I’ve been on instagram a little while, but I mostly left it alone until recently. I know it’s not the right thing to say, but I’m not much of a user of social media personally. I don’t know where the hours go when I’m on there and I find it difficult to moderate my time, and to give proper attention to the real world.
But instagram is just so damn pretty! I can’t stop looking at the moment. As if I hadn’t wasted enough time #justlooking this week, there I found myself one day on a site where you can find your ideal instagram name (I originally set up our account with the handle SturmanCo). “Sturmanthegerman” and “piemansturman” were amongst the gems I unearthed on spinxo.com (don’t go there -I’ll never get those minutes back). Not to be taken seriously, but it did get me thinking a couple of things. Firstly, there are a lot of men in those those names! Secondly, German and Pieman?! What does the single word “SturmanCo” say about what our design practice?
I should say I love Germany and have no problem with being mistaken as being from there. I took a traditional view when I took my husband’s name “Sturman” and I’m proud to have adopted a name from ancestors who once steered ships across the cold seas of Northern Europe. Having grown up in Newcastle upon Tyne, it even amuses me a little to have “man” in my name – I used to end most of my sentences with that word.
And so I am a happy Sturman and our interior design studio is proudly called Sturman & Co. It’s especially important that our growing little team is recognised for their fabulousness by the “&Co.” bit. We now deliver on a volume of projects that I couldn’t manage without their valued support. When I was naming the business, I chose to use my surname not my first name because I am a professional – and it felt right to me.
But IRL I have always been Bess – both professionally and personally. A couple of clients have referred to their houses as having been “Bess-ed” over the years. The designs and inspirations on this page are the result of a personal collaboration between me and my clients, hence the new name and tag @bess_designs for our instagram account. Please come on over and see what we’re up to. Meanwhile, this picture was taken in my last studio (I’ll post pics on instagram of the new one when it’s ready) by very talented lady @photokathryn. Whilst I’m in personal mode I may as well confess – IRL I look nowhere near as good as this!