Working her first job at a hardware store, teenage Chelsey Preuss staged décor and gift shelves.
“Customers at the time would compliment my work, and my boss encouraged me to look into interior design as a career choice,” said Preuss with a laugh. “But I was persistent with wanting to help animals in some way.”
Eventually, she gave in and looked up interior design. She later, with a degree in that same field, found her true passion in kitchen and bath design.
She worked for reputable firms for six years in Minnesota before she came to Sioux Falls to do what she wanted most.
“I’m such a dreamer with a lot of ambition who loves to live by my own rules, so entrepreneurial life is my ultimate dream,” explained Preuss.
Fueled by that entrepreneurial spirit at 25, she started her own design business: Chelsey Home.
Custom. Curated. Chelsey.
Chelsey Home offers kitchen and bath design, vacation rental design, and custom cabinetry.
She explained, “It’s so much deeper than selecting finishes and all about how they function as well as how the space functions.”
Preuss puts together layouts, renderings, and design concepts for clients’ spaces.
“I essentially make a solid foundation for a design so that clients can achieve it at their own pace and budget,” said Preuss.
She says she also shares free information on how to implement mindfulness into homes and life through her online design studio.
This month, Preuss will be working on pre-designed rooms and guides for Airbnb setups.
The Apricate Collection
Check out Preuss’ online shop where she sells vintage pieces. In Japanese, apricate means to bask in the sun, and her goal is to “bring these lost pieces to light and encourage sustainability.”
Preuss embraces her favorite traits with her business tagline that reads, “mindful interiors for the life well traveled.”
When she bought her first house in central Sioux Falls, she had that idea in mind as she transformed it into a rental.
“I transformed the whole upper level into an Airbnb. I knew that I’d always wanted a house to be able to do something like this,”
When she first moved in, she was only renting out a private room, and the living space was shared with her.
“I wanted to celebrate my achievement with owning my first home with all of them and get their feedback as some stayed in the guest room from out of town,” she said.
With help of friends and family, she painted, remodeled the three-season room ceiling, and found second-hand furniture.
“The house was built in 1954 and has a vintage charm and details that you won’t find in a newer home, but has been updated for modern living,” she explained.
After about a year, she opened the entire top floor as a private Airbnb and moved into the lower level.
Included in a Kitchen + Bath Design Package
+ Black and white 3D renderings
+ Electric Plan
+ Product selection guide
+ Simplify and style guide
+ Detailed wall elevations
+ Floor plan
+ Project timeline and guide
+ Vision board
Her home, known as Meraki Studio, can be rented overnight on Airbnb or for daytime photo shoots through Preuss’ website.
“[Meraki] is a word that modern Greeks often use to describe doing something with soul, creativity, or love—when you put ‘something of yourself’ into what you’re doing, whatever it may be,” she explained.
Remnants of her travels can be found throughout her home.
“I added unique, worldly, and vintage pieces to tell a story and encourage conversation,” she said.
“I just want people to be able to come in and just feel super cozy and have a place to get away. It’s very rewarding to have people say that they feel that way.”
Her influences can be seen in each room, mixing with the mid-century modern design and taking the form of different countries.
In the original Airbnb room, the furniture embraces Scandinavian aesthetics with exposed wood and plenty of white.
The second bedroom embodies Japanese design and culture with a bed that sits close to the ground, pulling in the idea of staying grounded.
Around The World
Preuss loves finding pieces worldwide to use in her home. In the living room, there is a pouf that she picked up while in Morocco. Photos in the space were also taken there. In the three-season room, the hanging chair was handmade in Nicaragua. Her favorite place to pick up authentic mid-century furniture in the states, though, is Facebook Marketplace.
And while the living room leans into the Moroccan style, the three-season room strays to be more “Scandi-boho.” All of these styles can be found mixed throughout, as well.
“I think as an interior designer, I just love people enjoying what I’ve created and being able to create with no limits,” said Preuss. “It’s different than designing for a client.”
But she says it’s not necessarily a good or bad thing, adding: “They’re both rewarding in their own way, but to be able to make something out of nothing and just be able to share that with people is my favorite thing.”
For more information, visit chelseyhome.com.