By Lucia Volker
Seasoned interior designer Nicole Durden and her husband Dan opened their store, Sound and Vision Living, in the beginning of October on Olympia’s east side. They specialize in mid-century modern and boho furniture, design goods, one-of-a kind gifts and the work of local artists. “Our concept is to have a store that is comfortable and approachable and feels like you are in someone’s home, but you get to shop there and take all the cool stuff home for yourself,” describes Nicole.
Dan and Nicole always planned on ending up in Olympia. Dan grew up in Tacoma, and both instantly fell in love with Olympia the first time they visited. They began to spend more and more time here and decided it would be a good fit for the concept and aesthetic of the store. Like many others they were attracted to the eclectic vibes of downtown and want to be in a small town with close proximity to bigger cities. Nicole worked as an interior designer for 16 years and missed the whimsy of decorating. “After years of schooling, learning drafting programs, et cetera, and essentially ending up with a degree in interior architecture,” says Nicole, “it was easier to find a job doing the more technical side of design. I liked it, but I always kind of mourned the fact that I didn’t really get to do what I truly loved.” The Durdens were living in Sacramento and working office jobs. Dan was working in government, Nicole for a residential-design firm. When Nicole’s firm sold, it felt like the right time for them to make the move.
In addition to the retail aspect, Sound and Vision Living offers full design services. It’ll help you with everything from selecting paint colors to decorating and styling, and the Durdens can be hired to make plans for a full-home remodel. “I have always told my clients that I am not the type of designer that is going to force my vision on them,” Nicole says. “My job is to help them make their vision come to life.” Through the Durdens’ realistic approach to design, the two are eager to become part of the community by helping Olympians design and decorate. The couple has gotten involved with the Olympia Downtown Alliance and is excited to be part of the change happening in Olympia.
Sound and Vision Living
721 Fourth Ave. E, Olympia
11 a.m. – 7 p.m. Mondays – Saturdays, noon – 6 p.m. Sundays