Listen To An Interview with 

Rebecca Pogonitz

I am an interior designer specializing in residential interior design that nourishes the souls of those living in their redesigned homes. My vision is to create a safe space where people can feel comfortable in a judgment-free zone to figure out what brings them joy and thus improve their overall well being. And please call me GOGO! (It's much easier than pronouncing my last name.)

GOGO's Story

Rebecca’s passion for design and culture began as a child, as she visited art museums and galleries with her mother, an art historian. Her exposure to interiors and fine art sparked a passion for exploring the ways that shape, texture, color and composition evoke an emotional experience. This interest in aesthetics and design led her to earn a BFA at Chicago’s International Academy of Design and Technology.

In 2001, Rebecca founded GOGO Design Group to serve residential design clients in the Chicago area and throughout the Midwest. Rather than being recognized for a particular design style, she is known for designing spaces that are uniquely tailored to each homeowner’s preferences and daily lifestyle, resulting in rich, layered spaces that will embolden, energize and delight them for years to come.

With honesty, integrity and trust at the core of how GOGO Design Group operates, Rebecca provides valuable insight, design expertise and personal attention as the unique vision for each client’s home is brought to life.

Rebecca speaks often on design-related topics at consumer education events and B2B design/build conferences. Her work has been featured in Kitchen & Bath Design News, Chicago Tribune Magazine, Design Chicago, and on Houzz and HGTV.com.

An Interview with Rebecca

Where are you located?

I'm based in Skokie, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, but I work all over (and dream about working overseas).

What is your inspiration?

I moved around as a young child, eventually settling in the Chicago area. I grew up going to museums and art galleries with my mother, an art historian and my inspiration. She shared her love for art history and aesthetics with me, discussing the people in the paintings and the context, history, and emotions they're feeling. She taught me about composition and color. Consequently, I aspire to create an environment for my clients to have an interactive experience that involves their whole being, like a painting!

How did you come up with the name of the company?

That's a long story, too. Just as I help my clients dig deep inside themselves and discover themselves, I was trying to develop a new brand name in 2012. Of course, my last name is tricky to pronounce, so that didn't work.

I thought about what brought me joy and energy and made me feel powerful. And I remember as a little girl, I didn't have many clothes, but I had this red patent leather raincoat. I just coveted it. The coat was so nice, I would never wear it. But when I put it on, I felt like I was transforming my life.

Something about that patent leather made me feel powerful like I had a superpower. And so, for whatever reason, I thought of a GOGO boot because I'm a huge fan of retro fashion (the sixties and seventies), and it's just fun.

And that's what I'm trying to bring to the Chicago design scene: embrace love, fun, and a free spirit. So that was the inspiration; thus, the GOGO boot has become my trademark. And when people see the boot, they know it's me.

What is your vision?

I strongly feel that a space's true measure is not how it looks but how it feels and the emotions it evokes. And, of course, you hire an interior designer for their expertise, talent, and artistic abilities.

However, the most important thing for me is to ask my clients what makes their hearts sing. Because if we're designing something that you don't own and you don't know whether you like it or not, how are you going to benefit from that? So, I work with all design elements to create a home that feels good and evokes happiness for my clients.

What is your favorite design element to evoke emotion?

Color! I say color first because many of us know that color evokes many different emotions in different people and can affect you.

Texture, composition, and improving a room's energy by rearranging the furniture are important, too. I encourage energy flow, and it's really about getting in touch with how you feel.

It's my job to get inside my clients' heads and live their experiences in their homes; it's not about doing it my way but about listening to what they want.

How do you build trust with your clients?

I'm always creating a space for my clients where they know they can trust me. I'm transparent and very open about how I do billing and my markup, and I answer any questions.

I do my best to ensure my clients know I have their backs and am their advocate. That's where the trust comes in, and that's scary for some people.

When I first meet them, I find many people are intimidated or embarrassed, and there's nothing to be embarrassed about. (You should see my place!) I take that away and help ground people so they can figure out what brings them joy because the world is nasty out there right now.

Who wouldn't want to come home, take deep breaths, and do whatever they need to recharge for the next day?

What is your favorite project?

You know, it's interesting. It's hard to say that there's a favorite, but what brings me joy is when my clients are open to having their envelopes pushed a little bit.

Even though they don't know what they want, the process considers things they might think are crazy. I love it when we collaborate, and everyone feels empowered that no matter what they say, no idea is stupid; we're just creating this fantastic synergy.

How is GOGO Design Group transforming?

I am honing my why and vision to gear my business towards emotional well-being. Moving forward, one of my topics is mental health and creating healing spaces.

As I've been honing my purpose over the years, I'm grateful that it's gelling into the idea that we don't design spaces. We heal spaces, and thus we help heal.

Again, I'm not an expert. However, my work is part of that healing process when life is so tough. And it's even healing in and of itself to go through the process. And that's the message I want to get out: I have a more holistic approach.

And, yes, I've been featured in magazines, but what is so important to me at this point in my career as I'm getting older is to help people in any way I can. And I feel like God gave me my talents and gifts as a blessing to share with others, and that's just my MO.

I take pride in the fact that I read people really well. I'm an empath, and I adjust my vision as people feel comfortable and bring meaning to it. When you feel purposeful in your work, then it's not work anymore. Now that I've arrived at this point, I'm very, very grateful.

Do you offer an initial consultation?

Yes. I offer a free consultation because we have to get to know each other to ensure we're a good fit. I have to make sure they're a good fit for me, and they have to make sure I'm a good fit for them. Otherwise we will not fully enjoy the experience working together, and we will not be as productive.

Start Your Journey Today!