Michael Reper was born and raised in Texas and had an apparent talent and passion for design at a young age. Growing up he would redesign his bedroom every couple of years, with his mom’s permission, with new paint, drapery, art and bedding. He loved rearranging furniture, redecorating and moving art around his house. Whenever his mother left the house she would come home to a rearranged and redecorated home – always a nice surprise!
While Michael was in design school, he got his first job working in a trade showroom. He later started his own firm in addition to owning three retail stores. He did extensive traveling to do design projects for clients around the world. But in 2008, Hurricane Ike hit Texas. Damages from the Hurricane added up to $37.50 billion USD, the costliest hurricane on record. The hurricane destroyed his business and his home, in the midst of a recession so Michael was forced to restart in the toughest conditions.
Michael decided to take a trip to Portland and quickly fell in love with it. While in Portland he started working with a client on a project and found out the furnishing and decor options in Portland were extremely limited. Being the entrepreneur that he is, he saw the potential for a showroom and created Nest. Nest Showroom caries over 10,000 fabrics to choose from and 50 other lines of designer products including upholstery, case goods, lighting, rugs and more.
Michael is well-known throughout the design community and is a true expert in the field. He values long-term relationships and trust with his clients, which is apparent in the way he runs his business. He has been extremely supportive of the school and provides our students with invaluable knowledge. Michael’s advice for aspiring interior designers is to let your personality and style shine, be confident, work hard, listen to your clients, ask for help, do it right the first time, clean up mistakes and thank your clients.