SoWal Women with Soul: Margie and Kristen of Beau Interiors
March 10, 2019 by Audrey Johnson
Mother - daughter duo Margie Perry and Kristen Foley are happy and busy running their family business Beau Interiors in Grayton Beach.
As they approach their 8th year in business, I sat down with them for a soul sesh and learned the truth about why the store exists, what it takes to be an entrepreneur, how they inspire one another, and the one secret about obstacles that everyone should know. (Spoiler alert: they’re all in your head.)
The entire existence of Beau Interiors can be summed up in one word: faith.
“When God called me to open a store, I knew it would be a place where people would feel welcome, inspired, and encouraged. Whether it’s through the devotionals or the contemporary praise and worship music, God continues to peel off those layers and reveal the purpose,” says Margie.
A visit to Beau gives you a light and airy feeling. Upstairs, big windows reveal the top of the surrounding forest, making you feel like you’re in a really chic tree house. Light bounces off mirrors, while the furniture and accessories embrace the natural Gulf environment.
In addition to interior design services, weathered wooden tables, artwork that reflects life on the water, natural slipcovered sofas, inspiring devotionals, funny hand towels, and wooden signs etched with scripture are some of the treasures you’ll find. But the real treasure is the presence of the Holy Spirit.
“Someone might come in and share something that they may not have shared before in an open environment, but they feel safe to do that here because it is a Christian environment,” says Margie. “If they want to talk about something to do with their faith, or some trial they are going through in their life, they know this is a safe space to do that.”
Margie has been creating spaces since she was a little girl. Entrepreneurship runs in her blood, and Kristen’s as well. (Kristen left a successful real estate career on the East coast to join the family business.)
“I can remember from young age I would go through my closet - my toys, my dress up clothes - and I would decide ‘I’m going to do a store out front and have a yard sale,’” Margie reveals.
Keeping with the entrepreneurial spirit, Margie would ride her banana seat bicycle all the way to the TG&Y and buy candy to flip in her driveway. Simply because none of the other kids wanted to ride so far to the candy store. “It was just fun and I really got a lot of enjoyment out of it,” she says.
Ditching her candy store ambitions, Margie went on to enjoy a successful career as a Senior Vice President in the banking and finance industry. She believes that a strong work ethic, whether you’re male, female, young, or older, speaks louder than anything. What it really comes down to is whether you are willing to roll up your sleeves and do the job to the best of your ability.
“We were all designed to do something,” Kristen adds. “We weren’t designed to sit around; we were designed to work within our gifting and within where God designed us to be - whether that’s in business, in being an entrepreneur, being an artist, or staying at home with your kids.”
Of course, Margie and Kristen face challenges like everyone else. However, the old adage rings true: it’s all in how you deal with it.
“I think obstacles are often perceived and not real. So, I continue to pray for the discernment and wisdom to know that I have created the obstacle – it’s only real if I make it real,” shares Margie.
“Going back to my career path and where I am now, it’s all in having the presence of mind to step back and say, ‘This looks big, but through Christ I can do this.’ If he really wants me to do something, he is going to open up those doors and make a path. I pray, too, that those doors are shut, and they are shut hard, when it’s something he doesn’t want me to do,” she continues.
“I feel sometimes obstacles are protections to keep us away from things we aren’t supposed to pursue in favor of the better thing that God has in store for us,” adds Kristen.
Kristen and Margie love sharing their faith with their clients and the wonderful group of people that work at Beau. But I had to ask, “How do you inspire one other?”
Kristen took the opportunity to pay a beautiful tribute to her mother. “She’s always inspired me. She’s so talented and so focused and a phenomenal business person and smart and warm hearted and one of the most generous people that I know. That’s the truth. She has such a warm generous spirit. Growing up I always looked up to my mom.”
Margie paid a beautiful tribute to her daughter as well. “Having Kristen come and work in the business was huge. It’s such a blessing. She inspires me to slow down sometimes, and I mean that in a good way. I can be very focused - very diligent about what I’m doing. She is that voice that steps in and will give another perspective. She has such a kind, sweet, and generous spirit. We can be very different in our personalities, but we appreciate our differences, and that’s good for the business and it’s good for us. I think it’s good for everybody.”
I couldn’t agree more.
Beau Interiors is located on Scenic 30A in Grayton Beach. Stop by for inspiration any day of the week. Visit www.beauhomeinteriors.com to learn more.