furniture & interior design
design & build
los angeles, chicago, ny
Best in LA 2001 & 2009
5 Houzz Awards
3 Houzz Badges
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6 Reviews for thea home inc
What a mess. Four words could have saved me tons of grief: "hourly, with a cap." I will never again hire anyone any other way. Thea charged me $6,000 up front for designing layouts for several spaces on my property. It was a $200,000 budget. In our first meeting, I gave her written pages describing what I needed for each space that would be changed in my house and garage. I thought that would be the least I could do: do my own homework of what I need before hiring anyone. I needn't have been concerned to write anything, but I didn't know that then. I expected that we would take the pages I'd written and we would sit in each space, one after another, and hammer out plans together - with her asking me clarifying questions and offering suggestions to solve problems and giving me a heads-up if something I wanted might have an unintended consequence, etc. Then, with all the information she now has about what I'm looking for, she would draw. Nope. The four reasons I would not hire Thea again: 1. No teamwork seemed possible. From the first week, Thea seemed to think my specific, written needs for a space could be ignored in favor of her own plan. I had hoped to have a partner in designing my home; someone I could talk to and work things out with. But with Thea, it seemed a struggle for dominance from the beginning. Over time, I heard more than once about my disrespect for her vision at the same exact moment she was disrespecting mine. 2. Process problems. To avoid chaos, I believe in working with a specific end in mind. There are lots and lots of decisions to be made for layouts, and I wanted to talk about, work out and agree upon the overall character and feel for the whole house before making individual room layout decisions. I thought getting clear together about where we're going ultimately - how I wanted my whole place to feel and look in general, and what kinds of things would make that happen - would then allow us to draw up some general rules of the road for decision-making -- basically, style/character rules that would serve as touchstones for all decisions coming up in all spaces. I learned too late that Thea had no plans to do that whole-house thinking until "phase 3," after all layouts were completed and signed off on by me. To me, that is an awful lot of road-building without a map. And an awful lot of decisions to require of me and herself without the overall goal firmly in mind up front. I truly did not expect to have this important discussion delayed. Without it, decision-making seemed random and chaotic, the opposite of what makes sense to me. 3. Missing foundational skills Thea clearly did not listen to me, take adequate notes, nor did she respect the written notes I had given her about what I wanted and needed in each space. I say this because the resulting layouts again and again bore little resemblance to what I wrote and what I told her. She often misquoted me to me as the reason she had done something. The first time, the first week, I was surprised, but soon I began going over layouts for what was wrong this time. If I hadn't paid the $6,000 up front, I would have left much sooner. 4. Professional Behavior Boy was Thea irritated to have her layouts questioned and parts rejected. In fact, she seemed either irritated or about-to-be irritated a lot of the time. If it was intended to keep me from speaking up, it didn't work, but it was wearing. At one point, there was a five-minute phone call castigating me, her client. Another time, during our first week, I asked her to explain why 2/3 of the major storage I wanted on a specific garage wall was nowhere on that wall in the very first layout. Her one-word answer: "aesthetics," as she turned to talk with someone else. In my old profession jobs were tight, it was fairly easy to see who was good, and no one who was not a top professional was employed for long. In design and architecture, there seems to be an unlimited number of people who keep wanting their homes done. And while there are scads of people who say they can do the job, you never can know the quality of the hire, nor the relationship you will have, until you get into the work. That is why I will now only hire "hourly, with a cap."
Consummate professional with great style and an eye for beauty. Able to provide several choices allowing the client to make the final selection.
Thea and her team designed and built our beautiful new kitchen and eating area (with a full dessert station!). She understood what my husband and I envisioned and brought it to life! Our family spends many hours there and we couldn't be happier!
Thea Segal created my dream kitchen on time and on budget. I would not ever do another remodel without her.
Thea Segal was the designer for the Northwestern University President's house - a project that required not only renovating a historic home that was in TOTAL disrepair but also then furnishing it - from rugs to sconces and everything in between. The house is almost a hundred years old and it still had the cloth wiring and original boiler. Thea worked with the architect on redesigning the entertaining space (we regularly have sit down dinners for 70 guests) - taking out an elevator and making the first floor completely handicapped accessible - including two bathrooms. She also reconfigured the bedrooms and bathrooms throughout the 10,000 square foot space. The house was a warren of small dark rooms, and Thea transformed it into an open and inviting home. It's now widely regarded as one of the most elegant and functional Presidents houses in the country.
Thea and her team were consummate professionals. The design and building experience were wonderful. We converted a 1936 kitchen and dining room to one large kitchen with a table for 20. I got my window to look out onto the street, and I got Thea's signature paper towel drawer and chalkboard. She didn't run away when I insisted on a white refrigerator. I have a beautiful updated yet retro kitchen that is so beautiful it was featured in Country Living.
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11629 vanowen st unit 7
North Hollywood, CA 91605
North Hollywood, CA 91605