Tam met up with interior designer and owner of Bureau – D.C.’s women only co-working space – Kerra Michele.
Photos By Lauren Scott of Tickled Photo Booth
Tell Us A Bit About Yourself.
My name is Kerra and I’m basically a serial entrepreneur. I launched my Interior Design firm, Kerra Michele Interiors, from my design blog, Apartment Envy, and have since gone on to open BUREAU, a co-working studio for women by day, and an event space for all by night. I’m also working on opening up a shop filled with things from my travels around the world (traveling is my absolute favorite thing), so that’s on the horizon!
How Did You Become An Interior Designer?
I originally studied Italian Literature with the intention of being a translator for the UN. I quickly realized regurgitating thoughts of others wouldn’t make me happy long-term, so I decided to go back to school for interior design. When I tried to find a job, however, everything was unpaid and I had no one to support me, so I instead chose to nanny and start a design blog on the side. That eventually turned into a full-time business, which then led me to need an office, which turned into BUREAU!
What’s your background? How does your background influence your path in life?
My father is Mexican and my mother’s ancestors are mostly French, so I’m a bit of a mix. I grew up in the United States but primarily in an area of the West Coast with a large Hispanic population, so even though my mother is white, and I consider myself American, I was on the receiving end of a lot of racism in school and around town. My graduating class in high school had 400 students and only 8 were not white. Growing up with these experiences certainly influenced me greatly, and has taught me not to judge people based on my perceptions. No one knows the struggles of another, so it’s important to give everyone the benefit of the doubt.
How would you describe your style?
My style is mostly casual. I rarely wear makeup — and even when I do it’s usually only mascara — and my favorite jeans right now are a distressed boyfriend style. I think people are so beautiful just as they are, so my beauty philosophy is to just let natural beauty shine through!
Describe your hair care routine.
My natural hair color is black, so it takes a lot of bleach to get my hair this blonde! Because of that, I try to only wash my hair once per week, leaving it down with a blowout for the first 2-3 days, then up with dry shampoo or in a [head] wrap for the rest of the week.
What motivates you?
I’m extremely motivated by love — a love for people, a love for nature, a love for beauty, anything that makes me feel full and happy and joyous. If something isn’t making me happy, I let it go. Of course I’m over-generalizing a bit (nothing in this world is ever all or nothing), but overall a desire to feel and give love is by far my greatest motivator.
Do you wear head wraps or turbans?
Yes! Wearing a head wrap lets me go longer between washes.
Where can we follow your amazing life?