In her own words: Marilee Wintz of Sage Interiors
Northern Nevada Business Weekly: Tell us about Sage Interiors and your position.
Marilee Wintz: Sage Interiors is full-service interior design firm for residential and commercial design projects in the Reno, Tahoe and Truckee area. As a registered interior designer, I plan spaces, select materials, design millwork, flooring, walls, lighting and art placement, as well as develop construction drawings. I also supervise projects. Here at Sage Interiors, we incorporate unique materials in a meaningful way to create an element of surprise that leaves a lasting impression for our clients and their guests.
NNBW: How did you get into the interior design profession?
Wintz: I backpacked through Italy, Greece, and Turkey and fell in love with architecture and design. It inspired me to come back to Reno and start the interior design program at the University of Nevada.
NNBW: What’s the most important thing you have learned in your career?
Wintz: That with hard work, you can always find a creative solution to meet functional goals and still exceed a client’s expectations. In a phrase, beauty inspires.
NNBW: All construction and interior design trades have been seriously affected by the downturn in the northern Nevada economy. What have you done that has kept business coming in over the past few years?
Wintz: I continue to receive wonderful referrals from satisfied clients and I also have clients who find me online and contact me through my Web site, http://www.sage-interiors.com.
NNBW: What are your favorite hobbies or pastimes? How do you spend your time away from work?
Wintz: Oil painting, pottery, cycling, hiking with the dogs, yoga. I am often inspired by my hobbies. Hiking in nature, I am often inspired by color, patterns and shapes which I use in my designs. Working with painting and pottery help inspire me to think of new and creative ways to approach a project.
NNBW: Tell me about the most fun you have had on the job.
Wintz: I have fun with EVERY project, particularly as it nears completion and the client sees the design come to life. It is like getting paid all over again to see the completed, beautiful design and have happy clients to boot.
NNBW: What’s the best advice anyone ever gave you?
Wintz: To open my own business. For 14 years, I have loved going to work every day.
NNBW: If you had enough money to retire right now, would you?
Wintz: No, design is what I know and love. I have good balance in my life right now and wouldn’t change a thing.
NNBW: Where’s your perfect vacation spot?
Wintz: Saignon, a commune in the Provence region of southern France. It is a small, gorgeous village where I took an oil painting class. Master Petrov taught us to paint village fountains and fields of lavender and sunflowers and at the end of a day, we got to go home to a gourmet dinner with friends. A lovely way to spend a week!
NNBW: Why did you choose a career in northern Nevada? What do you like most about working/living here?
Wintz: Reno offered a great opportunity to build a successful small business. I am able to work with many talented local craftspeople, artists and artisans to create beauty and inspire my clients. I love living among the sagebrush and yet being minutes away from gorgeous Lake Tahoe. Life is good!
Name: Marilee Wintz, Registered Interior Designer
Number of years in this job? 14
Years in this profession? 16
Education: B.A., Fort Lewis College; interior design program, UNR
Last book read? “Prosperous Heart” by Julia Cameron
Favorite flick? “Julie & Julia”
Spouse, kids or pets? Two wonderful goldendoodles
What’s on your iPod? Pink Martini, India Aire both of which I learned about at Artown, right here in Reno!
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Tiffiany Howard, a UNLV professor and recent Congressional Black Caucus Foundation senior research fellow, is the lead author of the study aimed at identifying ways banks can help support and invest in Black entrepreneurs.