As Studio IDC celebrates its 25th year – a key milestone particularly in the interior design industry – the team took a moment to reflect on where the studio began and how far it has come. And although many things have evolved over the years, one thing has remained: a focus on family.
Studio IDC, as it is known today, was founded by Stephanie Tyler in 1997, but the family’s
legacy in the Caribbean dates back to the early 1960s when Stephanie’s father founded a supply company serving the hospitality sector. In the late 1960s, Stephanie’s mother, Margaret Tyler, introduced interior decorating to the company’s services. When her husband passed away in 1973, Margaret took over the company, building its reputation across the Caribbean. In 1980, as part of the American Society of Interior Designers (ASID)’s first cohort, Stephanie expanded the family business and reintroduced the brand with professional interior design offerings. In 1997, Stephanie launched International Design Concepts, which was rebranded to Studio IDC in 2018.
Keeping it in the family, Stephanie’s daughter, Trisha, joined the firm in 2006 as an art consultant and curator for its boutique projects. In 2016, Trisha earned her MBA and took over as operations manager. In 2015, Stephanie’s son, Todd, moved back to Miami to join the family firm after working as an interior designer in New York and Los Angeles.
As her family marks seven decades of serving luxury hoteliers in the Caribbean, we spoke with Trisha about how being a family-owned and -operated business sets Studio IDC apart and some of the benefits and challenges that come along with it.
How do you think being a family-owned business sets you apart from other firms?
There is longevity and investment in being a family-owned business. When people ask Todd and me how long we have been working with our mom, we say basically since birth! We carry forward our grandparents’ and mother’s legacy of design and service in an industry we were born into and will do everything to continue the success of the business.
How does being a family-owned firm affect how you do business?
Other family-owned businesses tend to gravitate toward us, our methodology, and our way of being. We feel a familial ownership and pride in our work and the ways we interact with our partners and clients. We have several long-term clients and suppliers who are also family-owned businesses; there is another level of understanding in working with them.
What are some of the perks of working with family? What are some of the challenges?
As you can imagine, working with family has its charms and challenges! We get to see each other every day, which is something we value immensely. These years that Todd and I have with our mom are priceless, and we’ll hold onto them forever.
We also understand each other on another level. How often do you get to appreciate the “work persona” and professional abilities of your family members? Moms don’t always get to see how great their children are at their jobs and vice versa, but we get that all the time and can appreciate each other professionally as well as personally.
From a challenges standpoint, we realize there should be a separation of work and personal lives, but oftentimes, there isn’t. At family functions, we “talk shop,” and at work, we “talk family.” So, boundaries are blurry, which can be good and bad. But the benefits always outweigh the drawbacks!