Fernando Gonzalez of Flipping Design (Rafael Orellana/Living Out Loud LA)
From rearranging his mom’s living room to re-establishing the way we look at dining rooms, Fernando Gonzalez has taken his love for architecture and design to a whole new level.
“[I was always] looking at interiors and figuring out what that meant for me and the sense of space that I was in. I remember growing up and looking at magazines about interiors and architecture at around age 12 or 13; all of that led me to appreciate interiors on a different level,” says the Los Angeles-based interior designer.
Starting at a young age, Gonzalez focused all his extracurricular activities in high school to strictly creative-based classes. Growing up wanting to be an architect, he was obsessed with Legos as a kid. Once he graduated high school, he was determined to be an architect but eventually veered from his path and found his true calling in interior design.
The dining room is a focus area that Gonzalez has taken his business, Flipping Design, to. Most of us don’t use a formal dining room to eat meals, and if we do it’s for a celebration or a holiday. When asked what the dining room meant to him and why it was such a huge focus for his design studio, he states that “Guests may come and go, but you might never really have a moment to really get to know someone. I feel that cooking someone food is on a different level. Food is a way of showing them that you love them in a different way.”
All of this connects to his childhood and his reminiscences of having lavish meals with his family on the weekends or holidays and just having that time to sit and be with them all.
Interior design has become a huge conglomerate of professionals, DIY shows on television and even competitive reality TV programs. It is now one of the biggest and most competitive careers. So, how does one become the best at what they do?
“The biggest challenge for me was setting myself apart from other interior designers. Interior design is such a great trade, which involves a lot of skill, visual and artistic. Being in a city like Los Angeles, there is a big market for interior design, and that’s something I had to think about,” answers Gonzalez.
As an entrepreneur stepping back into interior design from a brief break after the economy crashed a few years ago, he had a very sophisticated thought process before his return: 1) what is going to set him apart from other designers, 2) how can he do it successfully and 3) how will he do it in a unique way that no one out there is doing.
“What I realized was that, through the years, I acquired a skill for refinishing,” he tells.
Gonzalez knew that second that his knack for refinishing, repurposing and/or refurbishing furniture was the way he was going to set himself apart from all the other interior designers.
“That’s when I knew I was going to name my business Flipping Design. That’s when I said that this could be something that can push me over the edge and something that I could be happy doing the rest of my life.”
For more information, visit flippingdesign.com.