Friday, July 17, 2015

The End

Well, today is my last day as an intern.  I don't really feel like my experience is over, though, since I am going to continue to work for the company.  I feel like I have grown so much over the last 9 weeks.  Not only grown as a designer, but also as a person.  I now rely on a cup (or two) of coffee to get me through my day.  On my first day at Mainspace Office Solutions, I was a timid newbie that thought of 320 hours as an eternity.  Now that the time is up, I feel like it all happened in the blink of an eye.  Below are pictures of my first and last day as an intern!
If you have been keeping up with me this summer, you already know that I have taken the College of Nursing project in as part of my family.  I feel like this project has become my child.  I will stand up for it in any fight!  This project is one of the most exciting parts about me staying at the company.  I cannot wait to continue to watch this project go from ideas to reality!  I know I posted some of the renderings a few weeks ago, but here are a few more!

Of course, I have worked on other small projects and have had multiple opportunities to work face-to-face with clients.  I am more comfortable now dealing with clients than I ever thought I would be at this point in my budding career.  As I mentioned earlier this week, I helped the project coordinators for College of Nursing choose fabrics for the seating and tackboards.  Here is a sneak peek of what we chose!
Also, when we met at the existing School of Nursing on Tuesday, I went in the main entrance and they had this on display! (Don't get any ideas, Mrs. Claire)
I would like to thank my boss, Jason Richards, for this awesome internship experience.  I cannot imagine my experience being more fun and beneficial than what it was.  Thank you for trusting me in handling so much and encouraging me along the way.  I cannot wait to see where this year takes me at Mainspace Office Solutions!

I can't believe I am about to begin my senior year in college (for the second time) in just a few short weeks!  I cannot wait to see all of my best friends so soon.  Enjoy the rest of your summer!!


Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Fabrics, Finishes, and Glue... Oh My!

As I am sure is true for most of us, this is my last week as an intern.  I have enjoyed my time here so much that I am being hired on as a part time employee for the next year!  I cannot wait to see where this journey takes me.  It seems everyday I am reminded of why I am majoring in interior design.  My time as intern has allowed me to grow in both knowledge and confidence.  I am now more comfortable sharing my opinions on projects, and Jason has trusted me with so many tasks that I knew I was capable of but most would not allow an intern to do. 

Last week, I specified every piece and part of the office furniture for the College of Nursing.  Thankfully, I pay close attention to detail or that task would've been a nightmare!!!  We went through the plan and each line item to make sure everything was correct before it comes time to place the order. 

Yesterday, I sat down with the project coordinators at the College of Nursing and helped them select fabrics for the tackboards and chairs.  They picked out two fabrics that they loved and I helped coordinate the rest of the fabrics for the spaces.  They told me that some of the fabrics I picked they would have never given a second look, but once I paired them with other pieces, they looked like a million bucks!  I think my smile stayed on my face all afternoon.  I loved the trust they put in me on such a major part of the project.  I am now creating a finishes board for the faculty to see what we have chosen for their new building.  I hope they love it all as much as the others have so far!!


Friday, July 10, 2015

Update on the College of Business

Hey y'all!  I had another opportunity to go visit the College of Business this week.  We took some of the people in charge of the College of Nursing project to see some of our furniture that was installed at Scianna Hall.  The building is now about 95% complete, and it looks amazing!!!  They went with a lime green/orange color scheme which looks really fun and exciting.  Below are a few pictures of furniture pieces that Mainspace Office Solutions installed in the building.
This is one of the faculty offices located in the Dean's Suite.  The P-top makes it easy for collaboration between the faculty member and guests or colleagues.
In one of the student lounge areas, we installed these really cool Feek lounge seating and tables.  They are super comfy and made of a heavy-duty vinyl wrapped around foam.  They reminded me of something you would find around a swimming pool!  I feel like these will be a crowd favorite for sure.

As you already know, the market out there is competitive.  Therefore, each company in the area was given a portion of the project.  These are a few of the cool things other companies added to the building!

Oh, and check out these vibrantly colored group meeting rooms for students to use!
These are only a few of the really amazing things that were added to the College of Business.  I highly recommend a tour once you get back to Hattiesburg!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Happy Hump Day!

Good morning everyone, and Happy Hump Day!  We have almost made it to the end of our internships, and we are inching closer and closer to the first day of school.  Although I am not really excited about beginning classes (sorry Mrs. Claire), I am SUPER pumped about seeing all of your lovely faces again! 

Things at work are going great.  We have had a few new projects that have kept us really busy which make the work days go by too quickly.  I had a chance to see the (almost) completed College of Business building yesterday.  I will post the awesome pictures in my next post!

As I mentioned in the last CIDA post, we have opportunities to work with other disciplines fairly often.  Last week, Jason and I sat down with a furniture sales rep.  He presented his company's new line and furniture offerings.  From there, Jason was able to request literature on products that he thought might be of interest to some of our current clients.  On Monday, we had a meeting with the College of Nursing and a fabric sales rep.  The dean wants to make the nursing school as "Southern Miss" as possible without it being corny.  We relayed this information to the fabric rep and he pulled memos of fabrics that he thought the clients would like.  I was shocked at how many black and gold fabrics there actually are! 

We are constantly dealing with other disciplines and practicing teamwork here at Mainspace Office Solutions.  Jason is trusting me with more tasks, so I am able to do a lot of the specifications and space planning.  Since he is the primary salesperson for the company, the more he can rely on others in the office, the more he can be out in the market selling products!

See y'all later!

Saturday, July 4, 2015

Happy 4th of July!!

Hey everybody!

I decided to save my blog post for America's birthday this week.  This past week was a very busy one for me, again.  Because of all of our hard work, Jason decided to give us the day off yesterday and it was amazing!

We started a couple of new projects this week, and now we are just waiting on client feedback so we can move forward with them.  We have an important meeting with a client this coming Monday, and if all goes well, we will be busy for the next few weeks!  I have officially decided to work for Jason part time this coming year, so I cannot wait to see some of the projects I have helped with come to life!

I hope you all have a happy and safe 4th of July!  I'll see you back here next week!


Monday, June 29, 2015

Monday, Monday

Hey there!

I hope everyone had a great weekend.  I know I did; it was just way too short.  However, I just found out that we are closing on Friday for the Fourth of July so that's exciting!

I have been busy filling in all of the faculty offices with furniture today.  I finished about 40 offices, so tomorrow I should be ready to finish this up and get a good price estimate for the customer.  We are still waiting to hear back from the faculty on which layout they like the best, but that shouldn't cause too much extra work once we get the results since offices haven't been assigned yet.  I am still so excited to be working on this project.  I feel like a real designer now!  Jason and I are supposed to visit a client at Stennis one day this week to go over plants for indoor planters. 

I am also working on a project in the Bobby Chain.  I'm super excited about this project, as well, because it is a remodel of the awful classroom on the first floor.  (Those of you who took Architecture History last year know the room I'm talking about.)  I think we all wanted to get our hands on that room a few times while we were in that class.  What we are doing to the room is going to be a huge improvement, and it is scheduled to begin at the beginning of the semester.  I vote that we all take a field trip to see it when it is finished!

Have a great week and check back closer to the weekend for a new update!

Friday, June 26, 2015

Finally Friday!

Well, we made it to the end of another week!  I have been so busy, and I love it!!!  I have had so many opportunities to grow this week.  First of all, we have had a few new clients, so I have been doing preliminary space plans for those places.  I am finally getting the hang of our new company software, so I am cruising along!

I went with Jason to two client meetings this week.  The first one was with Mrs. Claire in regards to the Dean's office for the School of Science and Technology.  We went over the checklist to make sure everything was accounted for and correct before placing the order.  The next day, we met with the College of Nursing to move forward with that project.  They were impressed with my renderings, and I think I have gained their confidence for the remainder of the project!  I edited a few layouts for them to send out to the faculty to review and choose the layout of their choice.  Now, I am filling in all of the offices with furniture.  This is definitely the biggest project I have ever dealt with.  I am in charge of the space plan for nearly 60 offices! 

I'm not sure who is looking more forward to a break this weekend, me or my computer.  We have both worked overtime to get presentations ready and drawings back to clients.  From the looks of it, the fun has just begun!

Everyone have a fun and safe weekend.  I'll see you back here next week!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Mainspace Teamwork

I apologize for such a late post this week.  Things have been crazy (in a good way) around here for me. 

Here at Mainspace Office Solutions we are all about teamwork.  Since there is only one salesperson (Jason), one financial/marketing officer (Lauren), and one designer (me), we constantly rely on one another on a daily basis. 

Most of our work is between the designer/dealer and client.  However, it is sometimes necessary to call on other contributors to the project.  As a matter of fact, I had to contact the architect for a project that we are working on to make sure the furniture we selected would fit under the window.  I believe that in order for a project to run smoothly, it is vital that everyone stays in contact with each other to avoid unpleasant surprises along the way. 

Although we rarely work with general contractors, Jason is considered the furniture contractor.  His subcontractors are the furniture installers, and they are in constant contact with the company.  They are a direct reflection of the company, so it is very important that we work very closely with them to make sure they understand how the products should be installed and if there are any special instructions from project to project. 

Since I began working with Mainspace Office Solutions, I have worked with other disciplines on nearly a daily basis.  Whether it is calling on the architect like I mentioned before or contacting our sales rep with questions about products, it is a necessity to maintain a close relationship with everyone in the industry to succeed. 

Thanks for checking in!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Is it just me, or is it super hot out there?

Hey y'all.  I don't know about where you are, but it is HOT in Hattiesburg!  If this is any indication of what to expect in July/August, then I think we are all in for a trip!  I have been spending most of my time inside (minus measuring the building for my research paper floor plan.)  After finishing up the renderings for the College of Nursing, I had to make a few modifications.  And, I have to say, I am very pleased with the final products.  We are meeting with the clients again next week to discuss the layouts.  Hopefully we will be good to go and can accurately quote the project!

Jason also told me yesterday that he and I are going to take a trip to Stennis Space Center sometime next week, and that I am going to be introduced as the Interior Designer!  The main focus of the meeting is choosing indoor plants and planters, so I am definitely going to have to learn as much as I can about that topic so I can confidently sell some products!  I have been communicating with the guy from Stennis in charge of the project, but I am still a little nervous to meet him face-to-face.  But, I plan to be so educated on the topic when we go that he will think I specialize in choosing plants.  Haha!

I can't believe that I am already over half way finished with my internship!  It has been such a great learning experience for me so far, and I still have so much time left to learn.  Jason plans on hiring me as a part time worker after the internship is over, so I will be working for him after class next semester.  I am excited to continue to grow in this area of Interior Design!

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

What I'm Doing Now

Good afternoon ladies and gentlemen,

I hope everyone is enjoying their "Hump Day."  I finished up my portion of the renderings for the College of Nursing project.  I am still learning our new program, so it was a challenge getting the software to do exactly what I wanted it to.  Here are two of the spaces I rendered.  What do you think?

It was a learning experience for sure, but I am so glad that I am broadening my software knowledge.  I am also learning how to research the answers to questions since my boss isn't always in the office. 

The new software we are using is from Project Matrix.  For this project, I had to draw the furniture in Project Workspace then render it using Project Render.  It was a little difficult at first, because you have to apply materials layer by layer.  Once the material is on the layer, you can't see that it applied until you render it.  However, once I got the hang of it, I was able to render the rooms as fast as my computer would complete them.

As of right now, the College of Nursing is my biggest project that I am working on.  Every day, Jason will bring me small tasks to complete.  Today, I had to look for LED lights that would be used as a  back light for resin panels on a custom reception station.  There are some really neat products out there!  I was also assigned the task of finding planters for a project that he is working on.  I will continue to look, because everything I have found is contemporary, but the client wants something more traditional/transitional.  I know it is out there, I just have to find it!


Friday, June 12, 2015

NeoCon Blues

I'm feeling a little bummed out today.  I'm not positive if my mood is because of the nasty South Mississippi weather or the fact that Jason just left for NeoCon in Chicago.  I'm pretty sure it's because of my jealously.  But, I guess somebody has to stay here and hold down the fort. 

I have been given some tasks to complete for next week, so I'm definitely going to be busy while he is out.  I am going to finish up the renderings for College of Nursing and hopefully present them to the clients when he gets back.  I am trialing a new software for the company, so I'm getting really good at watching video tutorials and applying them! 

I also have to find LED lights for one of our clients' custom-made reception stations.  I'm not very familiar with the different lighting companies, but I have a feeling I am about to learn a lot!  Hopefully, the information I gather will help me on next semester's hotel project.  I would LOVE to use lighting for visual interest!

I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Mainspace Office and the Market

Hey everyone!  Sorry for a late post, but this week has been pretty busy for me!  I am trying to finish up a few small projects, but I don't even know where to start.  I finally had a chance today to sit down and quiz Jason about Mainspace Office and its market. 

Mainspace Office Solutions is a local company that mainly serves the South Mississippi region.  Right now, we are working on projects on the Gulf Coast and at Stennis Space Center.  As I mentioned before, we have multiple projects in varying design phases at USM, with the College of Business being the one nearest completion.

When possible, Jason tries to do business with local companies.  Being a local business owner himself, he understands the amount of support smaller companies need to survive.  However, all of the furniture lines that Mainspace carries are American-based, therefore, most of the products are made in America (United States and Canada.)  As a result of carrying American-based lines, Jason does not personally deal with cultural and socio-economic design differences in his day-to-day activities. 

I know this is a short post, but I hope it will help give a better understanding of what type of market Mainspace Office Solutions serves.  Check back in a couple of days with more exciting updates!


Friday, June 5, 2015

A Promise is a Promise

Yesterday, I had the opportunity to visit the installation at the College of Business.  So, as I promised, I have some pictures for y'all to see!  I just thought it was beautiful before, but now that furniture is being added, it's even better!  That just proves to me that interior design matters and that even the smallest changes can make such a HUGE impact.

Of course, no Southern Miss building is complete without Seymour!  This life-sized bronze eagle statue is in the lobby of Scianna Hall.

These two rooms are faculty offices.  These pieces are from Indiana Furniture, a line that we carry here at Mainspace.  Each faculty member was given the choice of their color scheme, either orange or lime green.  The pictures don't do these pieces justice, but the dark wood grain laminate was an awesome contrast against the white laminate accents!

This space was interesting.  The room is L-shaped, so Jason worked with the School of Business to maximize the use of the space.  The solution was perfect.  When guests enter the room, they immediately see this desk, which will be tended by a student worker (jealous! What student wouldn't want to work at this beautiful wood veneer desk?!)  Around the corner, there is a 10-person conference table that can transform to suit any type of meeting from casual to formal.  Unfortunately, I do not have a picture of the conference table, but take my word for it, it's beautiful!

The furniture from our business was the only furniture installed this week, but there is still lots of great things to come!  I plan on visiting again next week, and if it looks this good already, I can only imagine what I will see next week!


Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Hey y'all!

Now that summer is in full swing, I hope everyone is enjoying their much needed time off.  This is my first full week in the office, so I have been pretty busy so far.  This week, my main goal is to finish the renderings for the College of Nursing.  Although the renderings that I am personally producing are going to be done using Revit, I have had to set up the drawings in AutoCAD to send to the furniture rep.  That is where my "internship challenges" begin.  The main challenge I have faced so far is remembering how to use AutoCAD versus Revit.  It's actually a lot harder to remember than I thought it would be!  However, I am getting used to it.  I have watched multiple YouTube tutorials, so that has helped me remember a lot!  I am also very thankful for all of the help Jason has given me so far.  Since he has worked using primarily AutoCAD for a few years now, he has been able to remind me little things that I have forgotten about the program.  Although he is a furniture dealer/salesperson rather than a designer, he has been the main space planner for the company.  I think he is enjoying having me around to work on small projects, and I am enjoying being here to help him out!

I am beginning to build a list of contacts, and so far all of the reps that I have had to call on have been really helpful.  One of them is even coming early for his Thursday meeting so he can meet me and help show me a few things! 

I haven't had a chance to see the School of Business yet, but from what I hear, the furniture installation is going great.  I will probably invite myself for a tour next time Jason goes!  Until then, I will keep on keeping on.  Check back soon!


Thursday, May 28, 2015

Welcome to Mainspace Office Solutions

Ok.  Before I get started, please don't judge my "desk selfie."  Jason was out of the office this afternoon, so I didn't have anyone to take a picture of me at my desk.  The good news is that I learned how to use my iPhone camera timer!  Isn't that what this internship is all about?  Learning new and exciting things?

The last couple of days have been very busy for me, but I'm not complaining!  I have seriously enjoyed having something productive to do.  Yesterday, Jason and I met with the dean and financial officer in charge of the College of Nursing project at USM.  I really enjoyed being a part of a hands-on meeting regarding a real project.  They even asked for my opinion multiple times, which I was hesitant to give at first.  But, you know me, I warmed up to them pretty quickly.  Thankfully, the dean wanted to see a few things at the College of Business, so I finally got a tour!  For those of you who haven't seen it yet, it is beautiful!  I've been giving it some thought, and I am going to propose that we give the business school the Kate and we take Scianna Hall.  What do y'all think? 

Jason had the chance to stop by the Kate a few days ago, and he saw my boards from the architectural firm project.  Now, he is giving me the responsibility to come up with the renderings for the nursing school!  I am super nervous to be given such an important role in the project, but I'm ready to show them all I've got.  Right now, I am working in AutoCAD.  Once I finalize the space plan for the Dean's Suite, I am going to send the file to OED and let them render a couple of preliminary space options.  From there, I am going to take the project into Revit and create my own renderings.  I am anxious to see the different products the two programs create. 

Next week is when we will start installing furniture at Scianna Hall.  Make sure to check back then!  Who knows?  There may be a little sneak peek of USM's newest building!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

And We're Off!

Hey y'all!

I hope everyone is having a wonderful summer so far.  A lot has happened since I saw you last.  First of all, I'm getting married!  I guess someone had to be the first of our group to take the plunge. 

As you all know, Ole Miss is very near and dear to my heart.  Mason did a great job incorporating the town that we met with our special day.  Now, I am super stressed out and confused about what I need to be doing to get ready for the big day.  Who knew that planning a wedding would be so hard??  Although we don't have a date nailed down yet, it looks like we will be getting married next June!

Last week, we drove down to Orlando to go to Disney World and Universal Studios for one last celebration before my internship officially began.  We had a great time (as expected), but I think the parks tripled in size since the last time I visited.  It has taken me a few days to work out the soreness in my legs and feet, but I don't want to blame the pain on being out-of-shape or getting older.  So, if you don't mind, let's just say the parks got bigger. 

This summer, I am interning at Mainspace Office Solutions in Hattiesburg, MS, which is a commercial furniture dealership.  I know a few of you attended the Lunch-and-Learn hosted by Mainspace earlier in the spring, so you probably had the chance to personally meet my boss, Jason Richards.  We have a few projects that we are working on this summer for USM, so thankfully I will spend a fair amount of time in my comfort zone. 

Right now, Jason and I are the only two people working at the company.  His wife, Lauren, will be joining us this week as the company's marketing rep.  I can't wait for her to come on board!  Jason has told me that he wants me to work with her in addition to working on interior design projects so I can use some of my marketing skills, as well.  Because of this, I think that Mainspace is a great learning experience for me, and I can't wait to continue learning the ins and outs of the commercial furniture world!

Well, I think that's enough for today!  See y'all in a couple days. Same place, same time!