Barbara Hayman Interview

Barbara Hayman was interviewed recently by internet marketing specialist Sue Thomson.


How long have you had your Decorating Den Interiors franchise?

Since 2011, starting in Pennsylvania but later relocating to Orlando.

Why did you decide to relocate to Orlando?

I always dreamed of moving to somewhere warm. As my parents got older I planned to move to the Fort Lauderdale area to be closer to them. Unfortunately, both parents died in 2019 before I had a chance to execute that plan of moving. Around the same time, our first granddaughter was born and we decided to make the move to Orlando to be closer to her.

Interior designer Barbara HaymanWhat is the best thing about being in Florida?

I am an island girl at heart and love the warmer weather and the plethora of tropical plants. I am also deeply inspired by the bold colors of the Florida environment.

How has it changed your life?

Florida brings me closer to family and friends. There’s nothing better.

What do you offer your clients?

Excellent customer service is at the core of what we do. I offer creative talent, personalized experiences and attention to detail

What do you like about the design process?

I love watching a design come to life with the combination of color and fabrics, patterns and textures and tones and all the different layers colliding to transform a space.

How could clients make a project go easier for you?

I find that building trust is one of the most important things when I am working with a client. My best design projects have been the ones where the clients trust me and allow themselves to truly enjoy the process trusting that I am making the best decision that suits their goals, style and lifestyle.

Design by Barbara Hayman

What do clients like about working with you?

I listen. I have their best interest at heart and I am always striving to make their vision come to life in a way that goes beyond what they imagined. I offer personalized service and I make the experience as fun and exciting as possible, all while offering privacy, convenience and the comfort of knowing they never have to leave home for the design process to happen.

Tell me about the best project you’ve worked on, and why.

My best projects have been the ones where the clients trust me. They are willing to go outside of their comfort zone a little bit (or a lot) and understand the value that I bring as a designer. I love when a client trusts me enough to allow me to get inside their head. That’s when something truly magical happens. I really get to know the client on a deeply personal level. I get to understand their personality, their likes, dislikes, fears and the experience becomes truly personal.

These have been my best projects. When all of this comes together and we are able to nurture that client/designer relationship, there is nothing better than knowing that the client gives me freedom to create and the outcome is always, always the best.

Enjoy the Orlando weather in a beautiful beach house by Barbara Hayman
Design by Barbara Hayman

Name the type of projects you prefer.

I love working on whole room projects. They allow me the most impactful design results. Design elements fall together so much easier when we are able to create a space organically without having to incorporate pieces that don’t necessarily work together. I also love working with window treatments as I believe they are such a vital piece in the function of a Florida home.

Describe your perfect client.

My perfect clients are the ones that enjoy working with me the most and understand and appreciate the value I bring. My perfect clients tend to be busy professionals that don’t have time to shop or they have no interest in doing it themselves. They may or may not want to be heavily involved in the design process and that’s ok. I just need to know upfront. They appreciate, desire and believe that they deserve to have a luxurious life and a little bit of extravagance. Everyone deserves a bit of luxury and I love adding that luxury factor into all of my spaces.

Some of my best clients have also been widows and widowers who are looking for some comfort and joy in their space to help them conquer the grief of losing a loved one. My ability to listen allows us to build deeply personal relationships and this is so vital to how I work and how I see the design process coming together.

My perfect clients also talk about me. They have fond thoughts of me and they talk about me to their friends, their colleagues, their co-workers. Their friends are in the same income bracket, so coming into the design process with me, they have an understanding of what to expect.

The dining chairs add a touch of tradition to this beachy dining room by Barbara Hayman
Design by Barbara Hayman

Tell me about your family.

I was born in Jamaica and am eldest of 7. My siblings and I are scattered all over the USA and Canada so we have to make time to see each other whenever we can, usually around the holidays. When we get together we have tons of fun. My husband, Darryl and I have four children, two daughters and two sons and two grandchildren with a third on the way. We also have an adorable grand dog, a mini Golden Doodle called Simba.

What do you do in your spare time?

I spend a lot of time decorating and redecorating my own home. This is my experiment lab where my husband and I explore different design techniques and design trends. I allow myself to be bold and make mistakes in my own home. It’s where a lot of learning (and unlearning) take place. Its where I break the most rules, just because I can.

I love to travel and take frequent mini-vacations exploring Florida and the Caribbean. I also love reading design publications and keeping in touch with design trends by visiting local design show houses and design shows.


Find out more about Barbara Hayman, interior designer.