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Life & Work with Amanda Kantor

Today we’d like to introduce you to Amanda Kantor.

Alright, so thank you so much for sharing your story and insight with our readers. To kick things off, can you tell us a bit about how you got started?
My first project ever was a dresser that was given to me back in high school. It didn’t go with anything in my room so I painted it and added new hardware. I was a huge fan of HGTV and enjoyed watching people work on our home at the time so I learned a lot through observation. I grew up working on cars, quads, and motorcycles so I was very familiar with different types of tools and comfortable handling them. I have always had an interest in design and DIY, but I wasn’t able to fully explore that side of myself until a little over two years ago. I was in an abusive situation and since then, I’ve really been able to lean into my self-worth and my authentic self. There are quite a few projects I have completed in two years. I have refinished cabinets and furniture. I have turned a run down shed into a nice contemporary bar. I have designed and completely renovated my partner and I’s front yard in our last home and backyard of our current home. I have created gifts for friends and loved ones for the holidays. I have designed client’s homes and helped with different handy projects around the house.

I enjoy finding ways to be creative and use my hands. I was a little shy to create a social media for my DIY and design, but my partner encouraged me to create an Instagram. Since then, I have created an account and gained displaying my projects. I also put together times lapses and videos that help walk my followers through what I’m doing and why. I showcase my mistakes and the finished product. I want to show others that their dream home is possible. I also provide services to help those that either don’t have the time to design their homes or work on ideas they’ve had for their home. Through my social media, there have been quite a few people that have reached out for assistance. I have provided zoom consultations to get an idea on how I can help. I love making a house a home. It really lights me up inside to help give my clients the homes they’d always dreamt of. Not only do I have my Design and DIY business called Handy Mandii Home, I also have a luxury picnic company called Boho Picnic Babes. Both are creative outlets that I can use to put smiles on people’s faces.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
Finding the time can be a struggle. I work full time and go to school full time so finding the time for my passion can be challenging, but it’s important to me make it a priority. I have faith that in time my brand will become bigger when the time is right. I’m still allowing my business to be fun rather than stressing out about how many followers I have or how many clients I’m booking each week.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
What I do is interior/exterior design and DIY. I love to design people’s homes that reflect their tastes and who they are. Our homes are where we land after a long day at work or after being out in the busyness of the world. I want to make my client’s homes inviting, comforting, and safe. Along with being aesthetically pleasing with different textures. I’m honestly still exploring what I really “specialize” in. My true specialty is making people’s home dreams come true, whether that be through design or DIY. By adding wallpaper, a feature wall, or finding the right pieces that really bring a room together.

What I’m most proud of is actually putting myself out there. I’m proud of myself for going after something that lights me up inside and has become a healing creative outlet for me. I love being of service to others and I’m happy I’ve been able to channel this side of me that has been dormant for far too long.

What sets me apart from others is that there aren’t a ton of female designers out there that can actually build or use tools. Typically they have to call in someone else for projects that require this type of work. I love that I’m able to do both so that it comes out exactly the way I had envisioned and I’m able to put that much more thought into what I am creating.

Alright, so to wrap up, is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
I just want to say that when you lean into the life that you’re worthy of, anything is possible. I know it’s cliche to say, but I really mean it from the bottom of my heart. A lot of us become wired to think otherwise, but once you recognize the reasons you think this way and rewire that thinking, the world becomes yours. Working as hard as I do, getting my degree, and creating not one but TWO small businesses has really opened my eyes to what I am capable of. I am fully capable of becoming someone that I had always wished I could be. You can too.


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Image Credits:

BOHO PICNIC BABES PHOTO – Kyle Wilcox Photograph

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