From the desk of Christine Faulhaber #WhatDrivesYou with Media Maven, Karl Lohnes
November 19, 2015
A familiar face and voice to many households across the nation, we sat down with the multi-talented Karl Lohnes on what drives him! A man of many, many hats, Lohnes is a designer, journalist, television and radio personality, public speaker, writer and artist. He was one of the founding editors of Style at Home Magazine and now offers his home and décor expertise to CTV’s Canada AM, HGTV America’s, This Small Space, Metro News, Canadian Living and 104.5 Chum FM as well as his blog TheKarlLohnesDaily.com.
Q: When did you realize you had such a passion for home and garden design?
A: My first inkling of creativity/style came from the world of fashion. I studied fashion, marketing and business as I thought one day I would run a modelling agency. Then I worked at an agency and found out it’s a tough business. A friend of mine owned a home accessory store and I worked there on weekends while I held a full-time marketing job for a bank. I had a lot more fun working at the home decor store on Saturdays so made it my full time job for a few years. From there on I was asked to style some television shows, help start a home decor magazine, appear on HGTV, speak at home and garden shows. In a span of six years I had carved out the career niche that I am thrilled to be doing today.
Q: What is one thing you wish someone had told you when you first started working in media?
A: “What the reader/viewer/listener doesn’t see/hear, they will never miss.” I was always far too conscious when I was younger.
Q: What do you love most about what you do?
A: I like the variety, I like that I get to use my marketing skills, that I get to work with so many talented people. What I do not like is having to be my own sales/marketing agent.
Q: What is your definition of success?
A: My definition of success is being able to respectfully say 'no, thank you' to business opportunities that do not excite me. I will never take a job if I am not personally excited about doing it.
Q: Where do you look for inspiration?
A: I look to the past for inspiration. I see an old chair and somehow it looks familiar but then I start thinking about how to turn it into something new. They say everything that goes around, comes around; after almost 30 years in the business I feel like I am coming around again, as something new.
Q: How do you describe your personal design style?
A: My personal design style comes from vintage style. I believe that nothing is new and there is a purity to original shapes and styles. My house looks like a curiosity shop, anyone who visits takes about 10 minutes just to absorb the surrounding, and that’s fine with me; I hope all my discoveries make them as happy I am.