In the News

Pacifica Interior Designer Gives New Life to Your Home and Furniture

“There’s a sense of euphoria that comes from giving new life to your home and furniture” — that’s what designer Denise Dolan believes. A Bay Area native, Dolan grew up in Berkeley and attended the Academy of Arts in San Francisco. After graduating, she landed her dream job as a window stager at I. Maginin & Co. and Saks. Dolan later moved to Hawaii, and then went to Oregon, where she opened a store that specialized in refurbished furniture and high-end clothing. Her love affair with creating beautiful, custom-made pieces from existing materials flourished in Portland.

After returning to the East Bay during the tech boom of the 1990s, Dolan continued working as a buyer and stager for premium furniture stores before eventually settling on the Coastside in Pacifica. However, like many people in the Bay Area, she had to reevaluate her career when the industry crashed. “Nobody was hiring in furniture anymore,” says Dolan, “but life had to go on.”

And so she combined her love of furniture staging and repurposing to create Denise Dolan Designs, a one-of-a-kind interior design business that specializes in helping people reinvigorate their homes. Dolan is often hired to stage homes that are on the market. “A lot of people are in dire straits right now. They have to sell their homes,” she says, “I reuse all of what they have and repaint things they thought they’d have to throw away. I try to make the experience positive and fun — we change paint colors and hang up artwork to give the house a whole new look.” She also mixes her own paint when needed — combining paint from her own stock with her client’s leftover paint to get just the right shade.”

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