Americans are linking arms during the month of March to celebrate the vital role of women in our country’s history and contemporary society. This national celebration dates back to 1981 when Congress passed a resolution, proclaiming the first “Women’s History Week.” Since that time, March has become the month to give special recognition and honor to women for their invaluable contributions to our lives.

Without question, the woman who has shaped our modern design culture at Cokas Diko Home is the gracious, genuine, and legendary Brigette Sallade’. If you’ve stopped in one of our stores just once or simply called with a question, there’s a good chance Sallade’ was the one you spoke with and instantly felt like you’d known for years. Her amazing talent for making the world a more beautiful, inspiring and functional place is not limited to her passion for interior design, but it seems to ooze from who she is as a person and the connection she seeks to make with each of her clients.

When asked what she’s most passionate about in the world of design, Sallade’ highlights the importance of trust and communication with her clients. “It is my job to make their home their home,” she explains, so she works hard to get to know what they like and feel about certain things. She concedes that one of the hardest parts for her is having to tell a client that the item they have chosen is out of stock or on back order. She says “there’s nothing worse than having to tell a client that a favorite fabric or rug is discontinued”.

When it comes to Cokas Diko Home, Sallade’ gushes about the uniqueness and the quality of their products and the joy she gets from working with the customers and the great vendors. “I could go on and on about what I love at Cokas Diko Home!” After ten years on the job, Sallade’s attitude is that of a honeymooner. She seems to have found her perfect match.

Sallade’s overarching design philosophy centers around layers and how they make a room more interesting. She avoids placing too many pieces in one space but prefers to keep things simple, making a big statement with an amazing rug or beautiful fabric. She adores colors and patterns but warns against being too themed. “A little goes a long way.”

A lifestyle as simple—and natural—as her decor, Sallade’ lives with her husband, of over 30 years, in a glass house surrounded by trees and boulders. The house’s layout limits furniture placement, but she can’t resist the occasional rearranging of her accessories and the continual bringing in of the outside. Artists often take inspiration from the world around them, and that couldn’t be more true for Sallade’ and her husband who love the outdoors, walking trails, going to the coast and gardening. “Being outside makes us happy.”

Don’t be fooled by the sparkle in her eye or her endless smile—Interior design work is not all glam and glitz. As interior designer, Sallade’s job entails cleaning, moving furniture, planning and arranging for hours on end, hand-holding, and lending a shoulder to lean on. But much of that comes naturally for Sallade’ who is quick to say, “I love so much and get so excited about each customers’ project. My work truly makes me very happy, and I feel so blessed to be doing design and doing it here.”

Her best advice for those just starting a career in interior design? “I believe you need to have a passion for interior design. There are many layers to doing design and many moving parts in a single project.  You have to stay organized with your clients, vendors and installers.”

Indeed, passion, organization, and a personable warmth are the hallmarks of Sallade’ touch.