Let Patti prove what mentoring can do for you!

Even while having a successful career as an entertainer, Patti Austin, co-founder of the Over My Shoulder Foundation, reveals that her first love was interior design. An avid believer in the power of mentorship, Patti discusses her first mentor in the design world – her mother. “My earliest design mentor was my stunning mother, Edna. Edna would wait until my father left for his night job, then she would re-arrange the house. Frequently! It was hilarious hearing my father come home early in the morning after his shift was done and bump into a newly designed furniture layout. My dad got used to it because my mother was constantly ‘rejuvenating her nest.’

It’s a habit Patti picked up.  “Design has been a part of my life forever. Music and design are akin to one another. You compose a room just like you compose music; you arrange. I am always creating interesting and effective ‘nests.’ When I was a child, we lived on a very frugal budget, and my parents often would take on more work by cleaning the opulent homes in Fire Island, New York. At 4 years old, I thought these were our homes and I developed a lifelong appreciation for exquisite spaces and objects.

I admit that upon first glance, few places ever get it right for me. One of the first things I do to my space is “Patti-ize” the room. I’ll even do it in a hotel, move the chair a bit to the left, place the lamp where it feels right to me. So, I guess I can say I have arranged thousands of spaces. And I’ve got my personal mentor, my mom, to thank for that.”

To learn more about Patti Austin and the mission of the Over My Shoulder Foundation, please contact us today!



Sofia Vergara is just one celebrity who has made the transition.

When Grammy Award winner Patti Austin made the decision to pursue her dream as an interior designer, songwriter and designer Dawn Carroll mentored her to make this dream become a reality. This successful mentor/mentee relationship helped to inspire the two women to establish the Over My Shoulder Foundation, which aims to raise the awareness of the positive impact that mentoring can have both cross-culturally and cross-generationally.

Patti Austin is not the first entertainer to cross over to the world of interior design. Listed below are several other celebrity interior designers that have successfully made this transition:

  • Justin Timberlake: First a singer, then an actor, and now a designer, Justin Timberlake is a co-curator for HomeMint, which offers high-end home furnishings, decor, and art.
  • P. Diddy: In addition to his music and acting career, P. Diddy also has his own clothing line and home collection known as Sean John.
  • Cindy Crawford: Aside from being one of the world’s most recognized supermodels, Cindy Crawford has her own home decor line called Cindy Crawford Style.
  • Sofia Vergara: This actress has not only come into her own in her role on Modern Family, but recently launched an affordable home furnishing line for the bedroom and bathroom called Sofia by Sofia Vergara.
  • Lenny Kravitz: This rock star has also created his own upscale home design collection called Kravitz Design, which includes custom-made furniture, crystal lighting fixtures, and bold wallpaper designs.
  • Brad Pitt: This actor turned his passion for design into a partnership with furniture maker Frank Pollaro to offer high-quality inventive designs.

Who are some of your favorite celebrity interior designers that have had successful careers in a variety of industries? Do you think the benefited from a mentor relationship while they made this transition?