This year we wanted to highlight all of the amazing women at COCOON for International Women’s Day. However, this date is also significant as it is Women in Construction Week! We are so lucky to have so many amazing women working under one roof creating, and inspiring each other every day. From our monthly “Ladies Lunch” to collaborating together on projects we work to uplift each other. To highlight these amazing hardworking women we asked them a few questions geared towards women’s empowerment. Check out some of their inspiring responses below!
My grandmother, Carmela – or as she was more commonly known, Millie. She was loved by all who knew her – she passed away 25 years ago, and to this day people will make a point to share much they loved and miss Millie. She was a first-generation Italian American, so the culture of food, music, family & people ran in her blood. Some of my favorite childhood memories revolved around those things- like watching her cook a pot of pasta fagioli, Frank playing on the stereo, while she chatted in Italian with a neighbor, and I tried to understand what they were saying. (I learned quickly which ones were the cuss words! ) I want to be just like her when I grow up.
Honestly, for me it’s about the people themselves. The magic of connecting with, learning from, and investing in the people here – it’s really a privilege to be a part of their journey. This is truly the best team on Earth.
I think the camaraderie we share as ladies in any workspace can be intangibly valuable if we are purposeful to support and encourage each other. I don’t think a day goes by where there isn’t a woman building up another woman here and celebrating their success. It’s inspiring. We happen to be working together here to help transform homes, which in turn helps transform lives – but I believe a big part of why we do that excellently comes from this behind-the-scenes authentic support and care for each other.
Tough to pick a favorite. Top of mind – I’m currently reading the Nancy Drew books to my younger kids. I loved these when I was younger, and now revisiting them by reading aloud to my own kids- she’s still awesome, I love her tenacity. I still daydream about stumbling on a mystery involving a trap door that I can solve…
Oh, also tough to pick a favorite…I love collecting inspiring quotes and stories! Read this one recently and liked it a lot.
“Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.” – Jennifer Lee
I tell myself that I am just getting started in life, and I hope I always feel that way, no matter what age I am. I also hope that other girls and women would believe that for themselves! We all have goals and dreams, own yours, write them down, believe in them, stay the course, and practice gratitude along the way. “I don’t know exactly what the future holds, but I’m stepping forward with grit, anchored in grace.” – Julie Graham
All of the females in my family rock in their own ways, but growing up I had a special love for my grandmothers. I admired the way they took care of business but still had the time to sit down with me and brush my hair or play a board game with me. My maternal grandmother is the sweetest and has always been the best cook and baker in my eyes. I always looked forward to baking cookies with her at Christmas. My paternal grandmother is an Irish spitfire who would come to my sporting events, play badminton with me in her backyard and always taught me to keep family and God first. I have learned so much from them over the years and continue to every day! I am fortunate to still have both of them in my life.
My favorite part about working at Cocoon is the ability to collaborate with the fantastic men and women I work with, on creating beautiful projects for our customers. I especially love the ability to bounce ideas off my interior design teammates as we all bring different strengths to the table.
I love working with other women in the industry because we can talk shop together and relate on the day-to-day challenges that we are dealt with. There is so much strength in helping each other become better for ourselves and our customers. Knowing that we all go home to take care of a family at the end of the day too, is amazing. Women know how to juggle!
Pocahontas – hands down!
“To create one’s world in any of the arts takes courage” – Georgia O’Keeffe
I hope that I can inspire future women in my field by being an individual in design and showing enjoyment in a career. I think it is important for women in the field to feel like they are expressing themselves in their work while helping the customer fulfill their vision for a project. Design is something that I enjoy, and I want to be able to show my daughter that I have been able to marry a career with a passion. In addition to that, I will continue to do my best every day to hopefully influence her to do the same for herself.
My mom. She loved her kids and her husband well and sacrificially put other before herself always. She gracefully balanced work and home life, taught us about Jesus and strived to eat dinner together as a family every single night. #momgoals
The people! Not just the amazing customers we get to serve, but the individuals I get to work alongside each day.
Elastigirl/Mrs. Incredibles: She slays the superhero role but is also a superhero at home where she devotes herself to being a good wife and mom. *Clearly I only watch kids movies anymore! Haha
“Happiness isn’t something that depends on our surroundings…it’s something we make inside ourselves.” -Corrie Ten Boom
My mom – She was diagnosed with a rare autoimmune disease when I young. Despite her diagnosis, she didn’t let anything hold her back from truly experiencing life and doing all things that brought her happiness. She has since passed but continues to inspire me to do the same.
My favorite part is seeing my designs come to life, being able to see them in person, and touching and walk through the spaces I played a part in creating.
Mulan – She demonstrates women can do anything men can do!
“I am going to make everything around me beautiful – that will be my life.” – Elsie De Wolfe
For me, this would have to be my Aunt Karen. I met her for the first time when I was 6. She was living and working in New York City as a cool interior designer. From this point on she influenced my decision to follow my current career path as a designer. Although she’s no longer working in the business, I love to show her projects.
The women I work with are organized, driven, and passionate about design. Every day I am blown away by Lauren and Aly’s level of detail and creative genius and love collaborating with them and being creative together.
Frances McDormand in Fargo, hands down.
“The most effective way to do it, is to do it.” – Amelia Earhart
I hope to do so by continuing to influence new members of my community that are looking to shadow or be an apprentice in the design field. I shadowed a few designers early on and am thankful for their influence! I can’t wait to show them what my day to day is like and the world of all things interior design.
My Ya-ya (Greek grandmother)
Providing creative solutions for our customers and their needs.
The collaborative efforts and persistence in pushing a design to its fullest potential.
“I don’t think that architecture is only about shelter, is only about a very simple enclosure. It should be able to excite you, to calm you, to make you think.” Zaha Hadid
To keep moving forward and never give up on the power women have in the design and construction field.
Until I was 6 my mom raised me as a single mother – and that feat alone qualifies her for some kind of award – but that meant when my mom was at work, I got to spend time with my Grandma Lillie. Grandma Lillie was always up to something. She was mostly an antiques dealer though and I remember her having booths at shops in Gettysburg and New Oxford, PA. We would drive around all day visiting the shops where she would sell her goods, stopping at Yard Sales searching for hidden gems, and grabbing lunch at super authentic local spots. These are some of my favorite memories with her but the most inspiring thing about my grandma was her entrepreneurial spirit. I will always remember her as a woman who saw value in her talents and tried her best to make a living from them. From crafting to baking and much more, she put her heart into her work and her family
How am I supposed to choose just one thing that I love about working at COCOON?! From the homeowners we work with to my fellow employees, people and relationships always make life’s moments special and I couldn’t have asked for a more incredible posse of human beings to spend 80% of my time with. More personally, my favorite part of my position in the Marketing Department at COCOON is how my personal and professional life has been enriched through my time here. We transform homes every day, but my life has been transformed as well. COCOON has made me a better person, a better leader, and a better marketer. No idea is too crazy, no suggestion is unconsidered. The leadership saw something in 26-year-old me and gave that young woman the opportunity to grow into the person I am today! I have a lot more growing to do, but I know that I am in a place where that growth will be encouraged and that means more to me than anything else.
Having other women around me in my field has empowered me in a number of ways! The ladies of COCOON are hard-working and talented, but we also know how to have fun. Whether you need support on a professional level, OR you are looking for a group of ladies to float down the creek with, I know these women will be there to offer support!
I have 3 favorite fictional female characters that help guide me in life.
“I brake for birds. I rock a lot of polka dots. I have touched glitter in the last 24 hours! And that doesn’t mean I’m not smart and tough and strong.” – Jessica Day, New Girl
I hope future women who choose to work within the construction industry, or any similar male-dominated industries, find inspiration in the uplifting camaraderie between the women here at COCOON. Having a #girlgang like this opens the door for future generations to have unlimited opportunities. It is so important for women to uplift and support other women in the workplace!
A woman who inspired me growing up was my Grandma. She was a “do it yourself” type of woman and raised me to be the same way. She was my best friend and taught me how to cook. She was tough as nails and never took no for an answer. I think having a female role model like her in my life shaped me to become who I am today and set me on a strong path.
My favorite part about my job here at COCOON is how much creativity it allows me. From coming up with social posts and content to collaborating with the interior designers for mood boards, I feel like my creativity is blossoming. Although this is my first position out of college, I am learning so much already, and being around the amazing men and women at COCOON has taught me so many professional and personal life lessons.
It’s empowering to work with women who have been in business, specifically marketing longer than me. I find that it allows me to be a sponge and absorb all of the amazing knowledge that they have gained over the years. Being a young female professional, I am so thankful to have superior female role models and mentors.
Lady Bird for sure – she is such a queen and so sure of herself, I loved every second of it.
“Be passionate and move forward with gusto every single hour of every single day until you reach your goal” – Ava Duvernay
I hope that I can inspire others who are interested in a field like mine that there are no boundaries or rules. Creativity and imagination are your best tools. Be yourself and trust your instincts and the rest will fall into place.
Growing up, my mom always inspired me. She is one of the strongest people I know and she has always taught me to be positive and see the good in everyone. She also helped me stand my ground and speak my mind, which I am so thankful for.
My favorite part about being an interior design intern at COCOON is that I get to help people. Not only do I help with clients and the design process, but I am able to help the design team. These people are very hardworking and passionate about what they do and I am so thankful to help them out however I can!
All the women in both COCOON and the interior design industry as a whole are incredibly creative and hardworking. They inspire me to be a better designer both in their designs and the way they work hard and are kind to clients and others.
My favorite fictional character is June Osborn/Offred from The Handmaid’s Tale. She does not accept the fact that women are controlled and defined by men. She encourages strength and rebellion against discrimination and inequality. She is not afraid of standing up for what she believes in and I strive to be like that.
“We’re all water from different rivers, that’s why it’s so easy to meet; we’re all water in this vast, vast ocean, someday we’ll evaporate together.” – Yoko Ono
I hope I can inspire women in the future by showing them we can do anything we put our minds to. The world is crazy these days and there is so much negativity and unfortunately, inequality. I hope I can help encourage others to accept everyone for who they are. If you want to go into a specific career field because of whatever reason, you should – it does not matter if it’s “feminine” or “masculine”. I hope to set a good example for the generations after me that women are strong and independent and can accomplish anything.
We are so lucky to work with so many amazing women under one roof! We love our team but especially this squad! Looking to join a company with creative, smart, and inspiring women? Well, send us your resume to [email protected]. We can’t wait to hear from you and expand our team of powerful women.