By Jennifer Gallus
HOWARD LAKE, MN - Paula Broghammer of Howard Lake seems to be the definition of an interior designer. She has been an interior designer since the 1980s, and has worked on projects both large and small.
Broghammer and her husband, Frank, recently moved to the area from the metro area, where the majority of her clients reside. However, she is often flown out-of-state by clients who trust her taste and talents.
Her business is called Custom Image Interiors, and she works from her home.
“I offer fair pricing because I work by myself and I don’t have overhead, so to speak,” Broghammer said. “I do my own pricing.”
Hiring an interior designer sounds expensive, but in all reality, Broghammer explained that she can save people money by doing things right, and having the right color palate the first time.
“How many times have people painted their interior walls and then hated it, only to have it redone. Another scenario is where people have had to knock out walls after they’ve been put up, or purchase new furniture because they thought their existing furniture would fit in the new space,” Broghammer said.
Her consultations consist of whatever the client is looking for, from paint colors to the kitchen sink.
She works with CAD design floor plans, and can provide “space planning” to ensure existing furnishings will fit a new home.
From 2000 to 2002, Broghammer worked as a senior designer at Gabbert’s Furniture and Design Studio. She decided to go back to her own business, and believed that she could give very good service being on her own again.
When she and her husband designed and built their home in the Country Estates development on Lake Ann, she purposely planned just the right space for a large family heirloom to be displayed in their formal dining room.
Broghammer’s specialty is color.
“I was born with it,” she laughed.
Her other specialty is window treatments. In fact, some of her window treatment designs have been published in magazines.
“My pricing is really comparable with other window treatment companies, as well as all interior design products,” Broghammer said.
She can order and coordinate everything from wood cabinetry, bathroom fixtures, and flooring, to windows, bedding, upholstery, and even plants and floral arrangements. Broghammer can beautify an interior space right down to the candle on a coffee table.
“I can do traditional, soft contemporary, and contemporary,” Broghammer said.
“I like to mix eclectic things,” she added.
Broghammer does most of her shopping at the International Market Square in Minneapolis. Sometimes she brings clients with her so they can touch and feel items before they’re purchased.
Some clients just rely on Broghammer to supply interior design products, and doesn’t necessarily need her help with the design aspect.
“If you are purchasing product, there’s no design fee. I order the product, and since I buy at wholesale, I then sell it for retail,” Broghammer explained.
Because she is a member of the American Society of Interior Designers, she can find quality tradesmen anywhere in the US to help carry out the projects. She has her favorite local tradesmen, but when she goes out-of-state for a job, the ASID affiliation helps her find just the right tradesmen for the job.
Currently, she is working on a large home in Nebraska.
One unique project took her to Florida. As a result of what the client was looking for in patio furniture that would be placed on ocean-front property, Broghammer had the furniture custom made in Navarre, and then shipped it to Florida.
“It was all teak and had custom cushions. It was beautiful,” Broghammer said.
“Remodeling projects are the big thing in today’s economy. There’s not a lot of new home construction,” she explained.
To contact Broghammer, call (612) 384-7718 or (320) 543-2927, or email firstname.lastname@example.org