Top Interior Designers’ Brand Partnerships
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The Interior Influencer
Interior design has always been a popular topic among the daytime circuit taking off when Oprah introduced the world to her own interior designer, Nate Berkus. However, since the boom of social media, interior designers (or really, interior influencers) have absolutely catapulted.
Whether their fame began with an HGTV series or began with a popular Instagram account that led to a TV series, it is safe to say that these designers have become branding megastars with huge retail collaborations, their own personal lines of products, and everything in between. In this blog, Hollywood Branded explores the top interior designers’ brand partnerships.
Shae McGee is the mastermind behind the Instagram accounts @StudioMcGee (currently sitting at 2.2 million followers) and @McGeeandCo, the account dedicated to her line of products (currently sitting at 975k followers). The interior designer found social media fame quickly and unexpectedly after simply documenting her own home renovation for her friends and family to follow. According to their website, “Studio McGee was created in a spare bedroom with lots of big ideas and no room for fabric samples.” Soon after, she was getting requests to help other with their interior design projects, and her business snowballed from there.
After amassing such a large social media following, McGee officially started her own design studio, Studio McGee, where they offer clients full-service design and renovation packages. It didn’t take long for the business to grow to include McGee merchandise, McGee & Co. McGee & Co. sells everything from furniture to rugs to lighting to kitchen, bath, and wall décor.
However, the price points of the McGee & Co. line aren’t always super affordable so to allow the Studio McGee brand to reach a different demographic, in 2020 they partnered with Target’s internal brand, Threshold for a custom line of products. Similar to McGee & Co., the Target line includes similar categories like rugs, storage, bedding, furniture, but at lower price points, allowing the McGee brand to broaden its reach.
Also helpful in broadening the brand’s reach is their Netflix series Dream Home Makeover, which also launched in 2020. The series takes a look at both the personal life of Shae McGee and her adorable family and also the business, watching her makeover spaces for families of all budgets, trying their best to show that the McGee brand really does have something for everyone. Season 2 just premiered on New Years Day!
Stylist turned interior designer, Leanne Ford made a name for herself when she renovated a 1907 schoolhouse that she turned into a home. The renovation was featured in Country Living Magazine, and the artist took off from there, eventually landing her big break – a series on HGTV with her contractor brother called Restored By The Fords. The brother and sister duo’s quirky and relatable relationship made this show an immediate hit, not to mention Leanne’s unique interior design aesthetic.
And where audiences flock, so do brands! It wasn’t long before Leanne had multiple brand partnerships that spanned across a wide range of interior categories like furniture, paint, tools, and even custom electrical outlets!
In February 2020, Leanne launched her collaboration with the home décor and furniture retailer Crate and Barrel. Together, they launched a line of furniture, tabletop items, and home décor. After this very successful launch the two paired up again to create a custom kid’s line of furniture and kids room décor. This is a partnership that only keeps growing that we expect to continue for seasons to come!
Known for her love of all things neutral, it’s no surprise that soon after the successful launch of their series, Leanne partnered with PPG paint to develop 14 go-to neutral shades for the designer. Part of the launch press included Leanne showing images of her own home utilizing all of the different paint colors, so you knew exactly how to get the “Ford look”!
When most think of home renovations, they’re thinking of paint colors, couch orientations, and coffee table sizes. However, few are thinking about the appearance of their electrical outlets. Thanks to her partnership with Legrand, Leanne Ford is not one of those people. As an ambassador for the company, known for their unique electrical switches and sockets, the designer has used her platform to promote Legrand’s unique and stylist products, showcasing how she uses them not just in her projects for clients, but in her own home as well. Ford has posted on her own social channels tagging and promoting the brand in addition to the brand using her likeness on their website and in their own social content.
Above is a screengrab of Leanne gracing the Legrand homepage with her likeness!
Nate Berkus, who many might call the original interior design celebrity, catapulted to fame when his client, Oprah, introduced him on her show. As one can imagine, such an endorsement worked miracles on his career, leading him to a, albeit short-lived, daytime talk show, renovation series, book deals, and multiple product lines.
As one of the first interior designers to partner with Target, Berkus has one of the longest standing relationships with the retailer. Having designed everything from furniture to linens to décor for Target for over a decade, Berkus’s cool, effortless aesthetic has brought him mainstream and allowed everyone to give their home that vibe. In 2017, shortly after the birth of his daughter, the designer launched Nate Berkus for Baby, a nursery line available exclusively at Target, bringing him into a whole new world of kids and baby accessories.
In addition to his successful partnership with Target, Berkus and his husband, fellow interior designer Jeremiah Brent, launched their partnership with furniture retailer Living Spaces in 2018. The line, Nate + Jeremiah for Living Spaces, has released seasonal collections ever since, with their most recent collection releasing in July of 2020. The collection includes pieces for every room from dining room sets to couches to rugs to throw pillows. The price points are fairly affordable (ranging from $500 - $2,500 for large pieces), very affordable compared to other major retailers like Pottery Barn and Restoration Hardware, yet again offering consumers the duo’s chic aesthetic at a fair price.
The QUEEN of it all though, is Discovery+’s Joanna Gaines. Acquiring fast fame with her husband courtesy of HGTV’s home renovation show, Fixer Upper, Joanna quickly became America’s sweetheart. Their family’s extremely relatable and down to earth lifestyle in Waco, Texas quickly turned the family into a household name, and as we’ve seen with the above, with that comes the product lines and brand partnerships!
Starting with her own product line, Joanna Gaines has Magnolia, a company of products that consists of everything home and décor from furniture to lighting to bed linens. The product line and the Joanna Gaines name are so popular that major retailers like Living Spaces, Wayfair, and Bed Bath & Beyond often carry its products.
Anthropologie’s home décor line also got in on the action with a custom line that features wallpaper, rugs, and throw pillows curated by the interior designer.
And of course, Target wouldn’t let this slide without getting themselves associated with Joanna and her husband. Together the couple and brand launched Hearth and Hand with Magnolia, the Target exclusive line featuring everything from home décor to paint to tableware to rugs, lighting, and more! It feels like every season the collection launches more and more categories, and if you’re ever walking the Hearth and Hand section at Target, you can’t help but notice how baron it is, shelves often left empty due to the line’s popularity.
Instagram To Interior
Between the TV series, the product lines and the brand partnerships, interior designers don’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. Social media has only brought these designers closer to their fanbases, allowing them to inspire their followers to purchase their products and reshare their own homes. It’s an industry that truly does appeal to every adult because everyone wants to feel comfortable and proud in their space, especially during a pandemic when we’re seeing very little outside of our homes! Interior design is a luxury that was once awarded only to the wealthy, but now thanks to social media and big box retailers, a well-furnished home is possible for all!
Did You Think We Were Done??
Interior design is just one category influencers are taking advantage of. There are many other industries where influencer marketing is
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The world of influencer marketing is effective, frustrating, complicated, exciting, etc.! There is definitely an art to crafting the partnerships as there are so many elements that go into it, whether it's the actual influencers chosen, the content they post, what the brand chooses to do with that content, what the brand should pay for that content - we could go on! Check out our guidebook below for a ton of helpful tips and tricks!