For Maryline Damour, the bottom line is connections.
The co-founder and principal interior designer of design/build firm Damour Drake established Kingston Design Connection in 2018 to connect local designers to each other, potential clients, and the growing design scene in Kingston.
That same year, she launched the Kingston Design Showhouse to spotlight the work and talent of these designers, as well as local makers and manufacturers—and to further her mission of building community through design. “I’ve always made it very clear that this is primarily an opportunity to build connections so that we can hire each other, so that we can continue to keep the dollars here,” says Damour, who wrapped up the third annual showhouse in mid-December.
The 2020 version—which featured 12 interior designers, plus 185 makers and business participants—was an effort that persevered despite some setbacks due to the pandemic. There was, of course, talk about it being a virtual event, but that wasn’t an option for Damour.
“Part of it is that connection. That physical co-location of these designers, contractors, and local businesses that forges these relationships. People have already gotten jobs from [this year’s] showhouse, and the showhouse has barely ended.”
This year’s Kingston Design Showhouse—at a Hudson River Gothic house, taking place over six weekend days from November 27 to December 13—was a success as far as attendance and safety: It was sold out, but with fewer guests and scheduled time slots with a maximum of 10 people per time slot. Masks were mandatory.
And now it’s onto the next showhouse and a search for that space. Homeowners can submit their homes as potential showhouses on Kingston Design Connection’s Instagram.
After the house has been selected, designers can apply via Instagram to be part of the showhouse. To view the Kingston Design Showhouse’s first-ever virtual tour, which is produced by Coldwell Banker in Kingston, go to www.kingstondesignconnection.com.