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Interior Impressions moves to Woodbury

Darcy Markus, left, and Amy Leferink will open Interior Impressions in Woodbury by the end of September. Staff photo by Riham Feshir

A Stillwater interior design business has moved to Woodbury, hoping to blend traditional styles with soft contemporary in a market bursting with new home construction.

Amy Leferink and Darcy Markus are opening Interior Impressions by the end of September at Eagle Valley Marketplace in the former Floor Studio.

Leferink, who left her banking job to become an interior designer in 1993, said the new location will be more convenient for her existing clients as well as potential customers in the growing parts of Woodbury.

Leferink will take on take on the design aspects of the business with the help of three other designers, while Markus will focus on the retail management side.

Interior Impressions is a retail store that offers gifts, home décor items and jewelry as well as design services -- something the duo said is not common in Woodbury.

With only one other similar business in town, Pomegranate Designs, Leferink and Markus said they're not so much competing as actually "supporting" the industry.

The duo travels all over the country to buyers' markets and gets the first peek at new merchandise before they even make it to stores.

Keeping their eyes out for different and unique things, Leferink's and Markus' store is in the process of displaying a number of different items — from the rustic coffee table with modern lines, to the colorful textiles featuring the latest patterns.

With many clueless homeowners trying to make a house a home, Leferink said walking into Interior Impressions will ease that anxiety with a number of staff members passionate about finding the right pieces for the right home.

"Everyone that works for us has a really creative eye," she said, adding, "They treat you like you've paid them to be your personal shopper. That's how we want our customers to feel."

By the time it's done Interior Impressions will be decked out with light fixtures, rugs, vases and accessories that help customers visualize the final product. If they can't find something they love, Leferink will work with them to identify their style based on pictures they see online, in books or magazines, or a questionnaire that she drafts to find out how they live and what they'd like to use their spaces for.

"We're good at finding things that look expensive but aren't," she said. "We have budgets too."

Keeping a neutral base and adding pops of contemporary colors, Leferink said Interior Impressions will feature family-friendly pieces that are also unique, chic and casual.

A design process typically takes between two to three months from start to finish.

"It's hard to cram that into two to three weeks because then you're rushing and you're not making good decisions," Leferink said.

Leferink has designed a number of homes featured in the Parade of Homes. She's also working on a new model home at Autumn Ridge, the new high-end development opening next fall in Woodbury.

Leferink and Markus are planning to hold decorating seminars at the store and at neighboring Angelina's Kitchen. A holiday décor session with food catered by the restaurant is also in works.

Interior Impressions will be open Monday through Saturday with additional Sunday hours during the holidays.

Riham Feshir
Riham Feshir is a reporter and photographer for the Woodbury Bulletin. Her coverage includes Woodbury City Hall, Washington County Board of Commissioners and business news.  Follow Riham on Twitter @RihamFeshir for the latest updates.