Tackling yesterday's tacky trends beneficial for Bay Path grad

(above) Brandy Deveno. To see a sample of Deveno's work, Click Here to view the photo gallery.
Reminder Publications submitted photos
By Katelyn Gendron

Reminder Assistant Editor

WESTFIELD Avocado colored walls, warped linoleum flooring and outdated fixtures can be a nightmare for any homeowner but for Brandy Deveno, owner of Deveno Interior Design, a tacky scenario is a welcomed challenge.

She put her unique talents in color theory toward gainful employment earlier this year, when she started her business after graduating in December with a business degree from Bay Path College in Longmeadow.

Deveno's business savvy and artistic aptitude have not gone unnoticed by her clients or faculty at Bay Path.

The Harold Grinspoon Charitable Foundation s Entrepreneurship Initiative will honor Deveno for her "entrepreneurial spirit" at their annual banquet in Holyoke on April 29. Lauren Way, director of the Entrepreneurial Program at Bay Path, nominated Deveno for the award.

"While I worked with over 23 outstanding Bay Path students this year who have [started] new entrepreneurial businesses or [have] ideas for businesses this year, Brandy really stood out for her dedication and preparation," Way said. "She has a good grasp of the field after spending years working in it [at Builders Choice Kitchen & Bath in Southwick] As a residential interior designer Brandy is fresh, creative and very professional."

Sandra Burns, professor of Interior Design at Bay Path, agreed.

"I'm not surprised that Brandy [will be] recognized [by the foundation] because she s always had a strength in setting goals and ultimately fulfilling them," she added.

Way said Deveno was not deterred by the current economic climate but rather learned how to make herself more marketable by giving "her career an edge."

Deveno noted that she began taking on clients in 2008, before officially launching her business this year, and has seen a steady stream of customers via word-of-mouth.

She explained that color theory is her forte -- the place where she draws inspiration for her clients.

"I can walk into a space and feel what colors belong there," she said. "I love the way that patterns and light can create unique arrangements -- the way that space can reflect an individual.

"People don t know how to combine elements correctly," Deveno continued. "[There's often] too many accessories [in a space]; less is more. You want to create simple arrangements."

Sharon Chevannes, one of Deveno s clients from Springfield, agreed.

She added that Deveno was able to take her cramped, dark and visually unappealing guest bathroom and turn it into a space that shined bright and bold to match her personal tastes.

"I'm not good with matching and coordinating [d cor]," Chevannes said. "She was able to e-mail me different options [and] provide suggestions but not pushing [her opinions on me]."

Deveno explained that she took Chevannes' love for "big dramatic pieces" and her "desire to have pieces with brilliance" and turned "a very tiny bathroom into one that gave the feeling of space."

"This was accomplished by using clean lines; pieces that would reflect light; and the use of color, not only to lighten the room, but also to create weight and act as anchors," she explained.

Deveno said she will continue to study and practice her craft in order to create spaces that allow people to forget about the stresses of their everyday lives and enjoy the comfort of their homes.

For more information about Deveno Interior Design, visit www.devenointeriordesign.com.

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