Feature: Nella & Sandra De Luca – South Hill Home
Leading a company through a challenging industry with factors across the globe constantly affecting business can be, well challenging. What steps do you take before taking on your day?
Nella: I am a strong believer in the power of mindfulness. I try to start my days with a Peloton ride or flow yoga, followed by a short meditation or 4-7-8 breathing exercises. The latter really helps me with clarity and focus to tackle my day’s tasks, and with improved ability to remain calm when things get a bit challenging or hectic.
Sandra: I always aim for 8 hours of sleep. When the body and mind are in sync, everything works that much better. A short 10-20 minute workout is part of the morning routine.I give myself time to ease into the day and rarely miss breakfast. My mornings usually consist of scanning my inbox for messages that require immediate action so I can get a good sense of what the day might have in store for me.
What led you to want to be your own boss in the Interiors industry?
Nella: Being in the interior industry came out of nowhere really. I was a Project Manager in the telecom industry when my business partners invited me to join them in this venture. It seemed odd at the time, but it worked because I brought a skill set to the operations side of the business while together, my partners brought design and clients to the table. Becoming my own boss was an aspiration I had from my teenage years, I just never knew exactly what I wanted to do or how I would do it on my own. Thankfully, things have worked out really well and I couldn’t be more grateful for it.
Sandra: An unexpected change in family dynamics and conflict with a former employer were the catalysts. It was a matter of taking the bull by the horns and “doing everything we were already doing and just doing it for ourselves, sink or swim.”
What challenges do you see cannabis having in the home setting? Do you foresee designers innovating home accessories to accommodate for cannabis use and accessories?
Nella: Personally, I don’t like the smell of smoke so for me, smoking cannabis at home is a deal breaker. This is where alternatives like edibles, creams, and so forth come into play. These all have a place in my home.
As far as design for cannabis – absolutely! I need a box for my edibles and my vape – why can’t it be a nice Shagreen Décor Box that is placed out to be seen while still keeping my contents private. For the smokers, beautiful stone ashtrays that once were all the rage but then became a forgotten accessory in our industry due to the decline of smoking (cigarettes), can now be revived and not viewed as a faux pas if they were displayed. When I was away at a weekend getaway in the fall, our host presented an assortment of edibles to us on a gorgeous shagreen tray, how lovely!
Sandra: The challenges I foresee are associated with the “smoke” element (which can be unpleasant to some) and mis-use of products as we know from the past. Since legalization, I have noticed more and more people participating with cannabis use in the home and I think this will lead to new innovative accessories to enter the marketplace sooner than later.
How has cannabis influenced your life and do you support the legal industry?
Nella: Cannabis’ legalization has given me more of a reason to experiment with products. Other than my youth, I hadn’t found the need to use cannabis recreationally – until now. This is also because there are so many more options out there now with alot of unique cannabis stores opening in Toronto. I’m still not one to smoke cannabis but I do enjoy consuming it in other ways. Therefore, I do support the legalization of cannabis because it’s what has allowed me to learn and experiment at my own pace with the proper dosages and regulated products.
Sandra: I personally am not an avid cannabis user. I have enjoyed using CBD gummies to alleviate extreme anxiety, but I find that is the best use case for me personally. I have seen first hand, the positive effects on people very close to me and as such I do support the legalization. I have been happy to gift CBD to friends that I thought could benefit from it for various conditions including insomnia and anxiety. I would like to explore more of the pain management side of cannabis now that it has become readily available.
What are you using right now?
Nella: I am using the Being CBD Oral Quick strips for immediate relief of any anxiety that i experience; thankfully I haven’t had to use much of it! I also tried the Proofly CBD Charcoal Face Mask and I find that it leaves my skin so soft. I use it once a week.
I occasionally enjoy the Wana & Chowie Wowie Balance Edibles as an alternative to alcohol to just have a happy, fun night. My husband and I recently purchased the Back Forty Forbidden Fruit Vape Cartridge that we are enjoying for relaxing at night
Sandra: The Dynthrive Pomegrante CBD gummies are my-go-to with the occasional 10:1 CBD Strawberry gummie from Wana.