By Jaclyn. Edited to fit your screen:

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t know what tipped me off that my experience as Designsensory’s summer intern was going to be a good one, but “sausage and biscuits” doesn’t exactly sound like the most legitimate answer, does it? I swear, though, at my interview, when Joseph Nother and Lindsay Miller were offering me a tasty breakfast as we discussed the “fine pieces of art” in his office (I’m referring to a children’s plastic buzzer-emitting wand and other “figurines” on his shelves) before actually discussing my portfolio, I knew this place would be great for me.

Designsensory has so much character. Even art on the walls is largely staff-created. The staff is so stylish that I practically have to wear a prom dress to keep up! You should see the stellar shoe collections belonging to Alison Ashe, Paula Solomon and Lindsay Miller. It puts my 54-pair stockpile to absolute shame. Everyone at DS has such great taste, with the occasional exception of the controller of the satellite radio. Ha!

The Designsensory kitchen is another story entirely. Something ridiculous is always going on in there: Josh Vittetoe is scrambling eggs; Sarah Mills is baking cookies; Alison Ashe is roasting pumpkin seeds; Susan Napier-Sewell is microwaving frozen spinach; Joseph is pan-cooking a T-bone. The community food table is one of the funniest (and best) phenomena. My already awesome office experience was further heightened by Anne Brogdon arriving with some insanely delicious homemade Magpies’ mini-cupcakes (demolished in under 5 minutes, no lie); another day, Susan Napier-Sewell brought in 4 dozen delectable vanilla thumbprint cookies from VG’s Bakery. It took a bit longer for the staff to work through a gigantic box of peanuts (from University of Tennessee Medical Center), but those, too, are gone.

However, all is not fun and games. Work is the constant, I promise. And, I learned, of course. To be honest, I didn’t go into the internship expecting to be a ninja designer by August. For me, this experience was about discovering and understanding the dynamics of a professional design firm, and Designsensory completely surpassed my expectations. Each person who works here contributes something more than the job that they were hired to do. I’ve always thought that the bestpart of a job is the family that comes along with it, and these fantastic people definitely have that. (Staffers Sarah Mills and Josh Loebner embodied this philosophy, getting married recently!)

This blog post may not be very telling or specifically indicative of my work at DS but, overall, I think the most important thing that I take away from Designsensory has little to do with the new portfolio items that I’ve acquired. Rather, if my time here is any indication of my future life and career as a designer, then it’s definitely something to look forward to, not stress out about. I also have learned to be more cautious with enormous cups of coffee around costly electronics.

Thanks very much to the very talented, creative, friendly staff at Designsensory. You guys made this experience what it was.


Well, Jaclyn, thanks for being the super-cool, super-fun, super-talented intern we knew you'd be. - JN