How DIYer Joanna Gick Earned Her Spot on NBC's "Making It"
Joanna Gick has one rule for designing a kid's room.
"I don't really like to do themed rooms," she says. "Kids are only going to like Superman for so long. I like to do a nod to what they're interested in, but still be able to strip those pieces away so they still have a really cool room that they can inject the new things they're interested into."
As the co-owner of J & J Design Group and J & J Modern Kids, it's this forward-thinking design philosophy that has landed her a spot on "Making It," NBC's new crafting competition series hosted by Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman. In this six-episode competition, eight of the most talented makers from across the country (Gick included) will take on the challenge of mastering handmade projects. Each episode, two projects will allow the makers to demonstrate their honed skill and bespoke touch-all to impress the judges: Dayna Isom Johnson of Etsy, Simon Doonan of Barney's NY, as well as Poehler and Offerman.
"Amy and Nick were the coolest people," Gick says. "So down to earth and hilarious. It was like I was just talking to one of my friends."
Admittedly, Gick never expected to receive the call back after applying to the show online. "It was a total shot in the dark," she recalls. "They called me back and I was in shock."
As for her experience on the set? Three words: "exciting, surreal, and mind-blowing."
Gick has worked diligently to build her design and DIY career. Originally from the small town of Maumee, Ohio, she credits her innate creative talents to her family.
"Ever since I was very small, I was crafting and making things," she says. "My mom would take me to craft stores and my dad would give me a pile of two by fours and some nails and hammer and I would just make things. My parents really nurtured that creativity in me."
Today, Joanna finds her passion in interior design-specifically, kid's rooms. She lives in Chandler, Arizona, with her husband and their two children, Doran and Marin, and her family is a big source of inspiration.
When designing children's rooms, her creative process has many components. "I look through the eyes of my children, when I'm designing a kid's room," she says. In addition to the parents' direction, she sits down with the children to discuss their interests and vision for the perfect room. And according to her, "it's always a different craft" involved every time.
Her impressive knack for interior design doesn't stop at kid's rooms. The true measure of her design skills and craft work is showcased right in her own home. Having recently renovated her home, she has incorporated DIY projects all over the place (many of which can be seen on her Instagram @ohsojo_). With a penny-tiled laundry room floor, painted cactus climbing up the walls of her daughter's room, and an entire wall of decoupaged cassette tapes in her son's room, her home is a palette for her creative excellence.
And while she loves her work with clients, her individuality as a designer is what drives her creativity. Hence, her simple motto: "Always believe in yourself and your ideas to do what you love and love what you do."
"Making It" premieres July 31 at 10 p.m. ET on NBC.