by Lou Mancinelli
Glenna Stone, 38, is a Chestnut Hill interior designer who took an unusual path to her current career as the founder of Glenna Stone Interior Architecture + Design.
Stone’s past as an engineer and in the corporate world overseeing national promotion campaigns for Oral B dental products unexpectedly laid the framework for how she would run her own interior design business and apply her brand of interior aesthetics.
After earning a B.S. in industrial engineering from Lehigh University in 1997, Glenna worked for eight years as a consultant and project manager in the consumer products industry. However, she felt the need to embrace her more creative side, influenced by her mother, an art teacher, so in 2005 she left the corporate world and began taking interior design courses at the Boston Architectural College and the Rhode Island School of Design. After much consideration, Glenna decided to combine her technical and creative skills and pursue a graduate degree in interior design.
Glenna then graduated from Drexel University with a Masters degree in Interior Architecture and Design (while going to Drexel, she also worked full-time and taught classes) and in 2010 launched Glenna Stone Interior Architecture + Design. The firm specializes in residential and commercial projects in which Stone often guides her clients through the entire process from start to finish. She has been growing her client list between Philadelphia, New York and New England for the past three years through word of mouth.
“It’s not just putting furniture together,” Stone said about interior design. “There’s a very technical aspect to it.”
According to clients John and Tiffany Lee of Chestnut Hill, “Glenna created a cohesive design that included elements of lighting, organization and use of space that we would have certainly overlooked. Her attention to detail and creativity helped fulfill our vision in a way we could not have imagined.”
When Stone organized ad campaigns for Oral B and later Gillette, she oversaw many aspects of production from purchasing to design and had to meet deadlines while simultaneously having to address the needs of workers in various departments.
After Stone left the corporate world and before launching her own design firm, she also cut her chops in the design world by working for the internationally recognized award-winning firm Margeurite Rodgers in Philadelphia, which has designed many of the city’s most upscale restaurants, in 2009.
Two of Stone’s current projects are a restaurant in Bucks County as well as a 3500 square-foot residential addition. She also designed the interior at Eleven North, a restaurant in Martha’s Vineyard.
Through relationships Stone has developed over the years, she is able to bring together all the elements required for a large project: contractors, architects and other skilled workers, etc.
In 2007, Glenna moved with her husband to Philadelphia. The change from corporate employment to self-employment freed Stone not from the discipline of hard work but from concerns about overseeing and running campaigns about ads for teeth. She shifted her focus instead to the well-designed space.
Stone, a mother of two children and a dog named Saffron, celebrated her 10th wedding anniversary last month. In October, 2010, the same year she launched her interior architecture and design firm, she was also one of three founders of The Sustainability NEXUS (TSN).
The goal of the TSN is to create an address for sustainability in Philadelphia, according to Stone, also a member of the U.S. Green Building Council. She said there are numerous “green” organizations but that “a lot of these groups are not talking together.
“In my mind design is collaborative. It’s not about me putting together the best design as possible. It’s about me working with the team to put it together. The space has to work.”
For more information visit www.glennastone.com or call 617-290-4545.