LIBERTY — Stacey Yahne has been with Crowley Furniture for 24 years. She took a small hiatus when she had her two children, but for her career, Crowley has been home.
“I graduated from Liberty High and then went to what is now University of Central Missouri where I received my BA of fine arts in interior design,” she explained. “I took my little resume in for an internship. I met with Greg (Crowley) and he noticed I was a member of Sigma Kappa. He said I had sorority ties with his wife. That was the summer before my senior year. Then he hired me right of college. It was a blessing.”
Initially, Yahne worked at the Excelsior Springs location and kept the showroom floor looking good.
“I filled a role and learned all the aspects of the business,” she said.
What would surprise people most to learn about your job?
“When discussing interior design, there’s often a reminder that there is something for everyone,” Yahne said. “It’s about keeping an open mind. You are learning about their style and what is a reflection of that person, but also you as the designer. It’s about listening to what they want, not what is perfect for you.”
What do you like best about your position or this field in particular?
“There’s something different every day,” she said. “There is also something to learn each day. It might be finding a new company that can help, the right people or drawing on the latest trends. It’s always changing.”
Would 10-year-old you be surprised that you are in this field or position?
“No, 10-year-old me loved drawing and coloring,” the designer said. “My mom would let me rearrange furniture around the house. Initially, I thought about residential architecture. I’m really glad that my degree came out of the art department.”
What’s the most common question you get asked about what you do?
“It’s always about what the current trends are,” she said. “The coastal cities are the first to see the trends that will eventually get here. I like to look at magazines and other industry journals to see what is coming. When the Crowleys go to market, they take pictures of what will be coming this way.”
What is the most challenging aspect of your job?
“When you have a husband and wife or two decision makers and have to be the mediator,” Yahne said. “It’s about helping the two people get the best of what they both want. It’s often about helping them marry styles together in a working environment. We start with furniture, which is the largest aspect to a room, and then we talk about layering such as adding colors or textures.”
What advice would you give someone who is starting a job similar to yours?
“Always keep learning,” she said. “Stay fluid while educating yourself on trends and the ever-evolving world of interior design. You cannot stagnate.”