Interior designer looks back on 15 years in the home design niche in Moose Jaw

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Jillian Bookout started her business after realizing there was a niche market in Moose Jaw for contemporary home design – 15 years later, her Main Street storefront is a go-to for advice, fabrics, decor , finishes and brand new ideas.

Jillian Bookout started her business after realizing there was a niche market in Moose Jaw for contemporary home design – 15 years later, her Main Street storefront is a go-to for advice, fabrics, decor , finishes and brand new ideas.

Bookout offers its consulting services for any project, commercial or residential, but finds its greatest pleasure in combining form and function in the homes of its clients. She considers how the space should actually be used on a day-to-day basis, while exploring design ideas that clients hadn’t even considered before.

“I feel like 15 years ago people were playing very safe,” Bookout said. “It’s evolved now that I’m able to do more projects that push people out of their comfort zone a bit, which is really good.”

Jillian’s Design Elements was born in 2007. Bookout moved to Moose Jaw at age 22 after earning a bachelor’s degree in human ecology from the University of Alberta, the study of the relationships between humans and their environment.

She is also a Benjamin Moore Certified Color Consultant and a minor in Marketing and Design.

“I hadn’t planned on staying, it was kind of a temporary thing,” Bookout said. “I just started helping friends, then it became word of mouth. And slowly it grew until it became a business.

She purchased the building at 621 Main Street in 2010, three years after starting her business.

“I realized the potential of Moose Jaw,” she explained. “It was just before the boom, and we lacked a niche market to have a contemporary decoration store here. So I took the opportunity and jumped in.

A space can be both beautiful and usable, Bookout believes. During her consultations, she asks questions about family dynamics, daily routines, and lifestyle, in addition to obvious things like color preferences or favorite styles.

“There is no one right answer when it comes to design. There are many options and many answers. … There’s a wrong answer, but there’s not just one right answer.

Bookout can work with most budgets, she said, and while a smaller budget can present a challenge, it can be interesting and rewarding to find ways to make it work.

She takes pride in her staff, and although she remains the chief designer of her company, customers should not hesitate to ask her sales advisors questions when they come to visit.

One of the things Bookout wants more people to know about their store is that the options aren’t limited to what’s on display at all. There are also regular inventory changes and updates, which means there’s usually something new to see.

“People don’t realize how many options we actually have,” she added. “They just see what’s on the floor, whereas we have hundreds of options in terms of ordering.”

Pandemic-related supply issues have affected her as much as everyone else, but she said people were generally understanding.

“You know, I’m so grateful to be in this community for 15 years,” Bookout said. “The support I’ve received from the community has been exceptional, and I’m truly grateful and grateful for it, and so is my staff.

“They’ve been here a long time, Marcie and Lana, and they’re extremely knowledgeable and can be extremely helpful to customers.”

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