Houston interior designer Nina Magon, ACC’s Entrepreneur of the Year

Magon opened her Houston design firm Contour Interior Design in 2008, later renamed Nina Magon Studio. His design has taken him around the world and to a home remodeling competition show for NBC. Magoon, whose parents were born in India, was named Houston’s Entrepreneur of the Year by the Asian Chamber of Commerce.

She spoke with the Houston Chronicle to discuss what the award means to her and how her identity and experiences have influenced her work.

Q: What drew you to interior design?

A: I was the first fashion. Finally, I opened a store in Galleria and I was more interested in the design of my store. A few years later, I closed the store and decided I wanted to build a house. I fell in love with design even more when I was building a house. It was then that I realized that there is such a thing as interior design. I went to the Art Institute of Houston for interior design and that’s where I just fell in love with interior design and haven’t stopped since.

Q: What made you fall in love with him?

A: I love creating interesting spaces because it’s art, but it’s functional art because people live inside it. If you think of art like a canvas and people live inside that artwork, that’s what interior design is really about. We create these spaces for clients, and every space is different because the person is so different. Since we do luxury, residential, hospitality and commercial design, we do it all. We are always curious, never boring. We don’t look back for anything, we love futuristic and modern design approaches to traditional aesthetics.

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Q: You’ve mentioned in the past that sometimes you’re the only Texan in the room. how does it feel

A: Texas is starting to show. What bothers me the most is that Houston is a futuristic city, it’s the fourth largest city in America, but for some reason, we’re not known for anything – not for fashion, not for design, not for filming , not for anything creative. I think it’s important for us creatives to put ourselves on the map by involving ourselves in activities that can help Houstonians.

Q: How has living in Houston influenced your approach to interior design?

A: Houston is a melting pot. My parents are of Indian descent, and I was born and raised in Canada, but being in Houston in this melting pot, I’ve been exposed to different cultures, which has taught me that nothing is right, nothing There is nothing wrong. All preferences is what I have brought back into my business and this is the philosophy I tell everyone who works here.

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Q: Do you have any other lessons that helped shape your career?

A: I have learned many lessons from my parents and from being of Indian origin. First of all, you have to work very hard, because without hard work, it doesn’t matter how smart you are, because someone will be smarter. Another thing my dad taught me at a very young age, rightly or wrongly, is that no one will remember #2, they will only remember #1. If you are a tennis player, everyone always remembers who won. It was Wimbledon, they never remember who they were playing against.

But I don’t think there’s a #1 in this industry because it’s so creative, and when you’re in a creative field, there’s no right or wrong, it’s all subjective, it’s not like tennis where you have to follow the rules. Followed There are no rules, you do what you think is right. And that’s one of the things I love about our industry.

Q: How did it feel to be selected as the top entrepreneur of the Asian Chamber of Commerce?

A: It’s interesting because when you’re so busy working, you don’t see how you’re affecting others or even how they notice you. It was very surprising to hear from the Asian Chamber of Commerce and we asked them to say: “You are the entrepreneur of the year for these reasons, you work very hard and we see what you do for society and how you are. It affects the younger generation. ” I’m very proud and humbled by that. There are so many women, especially minority women, who are really raising the bar in so many different fields. I think it’s so important to recognize that. That’s what I I want my daughter to see, because she learns from watching me and so she learns and sees that her mother works really hard. I want her to never think that she needs to rely on a man for anything.

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Q: Is this the moment you can say, “Now I’ve made it?”

A: I don’t have that moment, even to this day. One of the things my parents taught me is that you should always be humble. There is so much to learn and so much to experience that I don’t know if I will ever feel like “I got there”. There is so much growth in this industry, from design to learning and product development. I don’t think I’m there yet, there’s still a lot to learn.

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