EL Questionnaire 2021


Name: Genevieve Messina
Company: SMMA
Concentration: Commercial/Work Place
College/University: Boston Architectural College
Year(s) of Graduation: 2018

What is your strongest personal quality?: Loyalty is my strongest personal quality. I take my relationships (personal and professional) very seriously and I strive to be the person they can come to whenever they need help or support. 
What is your strongest professional skillset?: I am a keen observer of other people's strengths and I am able to draw out the best in each person. I am intrigued by the unique qualities of each person and enjoy working with others to reach their fullest potential and create an enjoyable work/team experience. 
Why did you choose to become an Interior Designer?: It started with rearranging my grandmother's tchotchkes then transitioned to building my own cupboard villages and one day I discovered HGTV and I found out I could do this for a living. I have always had a passion for problem solving and organizing the space around me. 
How would you describe your personal style?: Modern-Eclectic-Boho. I love mid-century modern furniture, bold patterns, colors and lots of textures. 
What three things do you most geek out on?: (1) Any time my cat does something cute which is all the time. (2) Discovering new plants that I need to add to my growing collection. (3) Trying a complex recipe for the first time and it actually comes out perfect (which is rare, I am my own worst critic). 
What are you looking forward to as an IIDA Emerging Leader?: To connect to a diverse group of individuals that poses different insight and experiences that can help me gain more knowledge in becoming a better designer. 
What has been your go-to for de-stressing this year?: I love cooking and taking care of my plants. Working from home this year has given me more time to try new dishes and tend to my plants more diligently. These two activities really help me slow down after a fast-paced work day. 
What Advice do you have for designer students graduating?: Don't be afraid to ask questions and take notes for everything.  
What is your favorite annual IIDA event?: The IIDA Fashion Show. I participated in the event for 4 consecutive years, it is a lot of work, but so rewarding. It is amazing how everyone interprets the concept so differently and to see all the detailing and design execution.  
How would you explain the difference between a professional Interior Designer vs Interior Decorator to a stranger?: An Interior Decorator is someone whose primary focus is on aesthetics. They assist with color, furniture, and material selection. Whereas an Interior Designer is a problem solver. We also assist with color, furniture and material selections bit we are able to program spaces to be safe, functional and beautiful based on client specific needs.