Leslie Bowman, owner of The Design Bar (thedesignbars.com) in Burr Ridge, is glowing with pride from her firm’s most recent accolade. “We are nominated for another arts award for Best Home and Accent Store in the Midwest/Southwest Region,” she says. “We won last year and it’s the second year in a row that we are nominated. I could not be prouder, especially since I did not know a thing about retail before I purchased the store four years ago.” She and her husband Jim Bowman are empty nesters and enjoying all that life in the Burr Ridge/Hinsdale area offers. Their oldest daughter, Shannon, is married and lives in South Bend, Indiana, where she is a PhD candidate at Notre Dame. Their youngest children are twins Randie and Ryan. Randie lives in downtown Chicago, working as a graphic designer, and Ryan is a Navy pilot living in Jacksonville, Florida. Here are some of this busy professionals’ favorite lasts:
Last moment with a client that made you proud of what you’re doing?
I recently worked with a client who needed finishing touches in preparation for a big party he was having. We placed artwork, accessories, and small pieces of furniture and turned his house into a home. He wanted me to attend the party so that he could introduce me to his friends. It’s moments like this that make me proud to do what I’m doing.
Last amazing vacation you took that inspired you?
It was over the 4th of July to Texas. My son is in the Navy and he received his Navy wings on July 3. It was such an inspiration to see all these brave young men who at such a young age, commit to defend us conditionally. We also went to San Antonio and the houses among the Riverwalk and the historic district were amazing.
Last fantastic piece of advice you received that you now share with others?
Be disruptive … meaning, think outside the box. Don’t do everything like everyone else. And be genuine. Everybody appreciates a real person.
Last great design find?
Chic and sophisticated leather strip chandeliers from Ngala Tradiing. I can’t wait to use one in a project!
Last impulse purchase that you’ll never regret?
Purchasing my condo in the Burr Ridge Village Center. I know that might not necessarily be impulsive but my kids were going off to college and we just wanted an easier way of life. I do not regret it to this day.