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What’s On My Desk: Andréa Dixon, Principal of Fiddlehead Design Group

Making office clutter look chic.

What’s On My Desk: Andréa Dixon, Principal of Fiddlehead Design Group
The overhead view of Andréa Dixon's desk

Andréa Dixon is one half of the duo at Fiddlehead Design Group, a Minneapolis-based interior design firm with national reach, specializing in custom kitchen and bath design. Even her messes seem chic and inspired. “Unique play of pattern, color, and texture is our signature,” Dixon says. She gave us a peek at her workspace at International Market Square.

Drafting tools: Although our firm uses digital design tools, I still like to hand draft. Not many designers do it that way anymore; I feel like I’m preserving a lost art.

Laptop with Sketchup software: I love the look on our clients’ faces when we use this 3D modeling software to share our vision for their home. They’re able to see the plans come to life!

Design Finishes: My design firm is currently redesigning an historic home in Cincinnati that was originally designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and his protege John deKoven Hill. The home was featured as a “Pace Setter” home by House Beautiful in 1960.  We’re honoring that rich history, making sure each element of our redesign is a nod to the original.

Lipstick: I’m always on the go. I like to keep a few beauty essentials nearby so I’m always ready for a quick touch-up before I dash out the door. I’m currently loving Rose Saint Germain by YSL.

Coffee and chocolate: Because a girl needs fuel to keep going!


Is your desk in a private office or open area? I share a workspace with Jen Ziemer, the other half of Fiddlehead Design Group. Collaboration is integral to our design work, so working side by side (literally!) just makes more sense. We’ve been doing it that way since we started our business in 2007.

View from your desk? Our office is in International Market Square which has lots of big windows. I’m lucky to have a window just above my desk with views of downtown Minneapolis. Our office always has natural light pouring in. As visual as our work is, all of the natural light in our office is really vital.

Typical workday? There is no “typical” day at Fiddlehead Design Group. Like a box of chocolates, you just never know what you’re gonna get!  I try to manage my day by time-blocking for tasks like drafting, product sourcing and other important to-do’s, but when a client calls or an important email comes in, I’ve got to be able to quickly shift priorities.  It’s just part of the job.

How much work do you do at your desk? I do get a lot of work done when I’m at my desk, but some days I never even make it to the office. A lot of times I start my day at a job site to meet with an electrician, then I’m off to meet a client at one of our local design showrooms to select furnishings, then I wrap up my day with a design industry networking event.  Thank goodness for my iPhone!

Can you work at a messy desk? Flexibility is my middle name. I’m used to working just about anywhere - from a noisy construction site (with a hard hat, no less!) to a metal worker’s studio. A messy desk doesn’t slow me down.

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