For interior designer Janice Long, the long-time dream of opening her own store became a reality this month when she opened the doors of Calla Design in Oak Bay’s Estevan Village. Rather than working toward early retirement, as many boomers do, Long had her sights set on creating her own studio and storefront. “It was now or never,” says Long. “It’s wonderful to see my vision come to life.”
The physical manifestation of her design philosophy, Calla Design carries an eclectic yet cohesive range of furniture, local art, jewellery and luxurious home accessories. Long has the exclusive rights for some international product lines and has stocked products not found elsewhere in Victoria. She also sources vintage pieces on her travels. In the showroom, she creates vignettes to demonstrate how a customer “can create a fresh, harmonious look for their home by incorporating the new with their favourite pieces they already own.”
Long’s artistic nature and natural design abilities were nurtured from childhood by her parents who gave her books on art and design and encouraged her to follow her creative path. After the journey of design school and several years of working for major Canadian retailers, it was time to showcase her talents at Calla Design. “I’ve always known there was a store missing from Victoria, one that carried the products and designers I was making special trips to larger cities to buy.”
Calla Design will carry the work of local artists, Vancouver-based structural artist Martha Sturdy, Canadian furniture by Whittington & Co., as well as international brands Lafco and Antica Farmacista.