Joanne Voll – Creative Finishes
Joanne founded her company, Creative Finishes, in 1999, but that was not her first venture into the world of color and style. Her previous career was as a buyer for the Juniors department at Marshall Fields. When her kids were born, she gave up her career as a buyer for an even more important position as a stay at home mom raising her children. After her children were back in school full time, she decided to try to take on a part-time position, but it wasn’t what she was looking for. She had always been an artistic person, and enjoyed taking art classes. She tried her hand at faux finishing a room in her house and was hooked. Her husband gave her a Debbie Travis book and told her “this is what you should be doing.” He then helped her by locating Kathy Carroll’s school. She took her first class from Kathy on March 10, 1999 and never turned back.
Since her first appearance as our Artisan of the Month in May of 2006, Joanne Voll has continued to grow in her business and become a master in her field. Her work is more sophisticated now, and she’s becoming more adventurous with color and design. She has added more layered finishes, lime finishes, metallics, plaster work, and Modello stencils to her portfolio.
Joanne places continuing education at the forefront of her business. When people ask her why she is still taking classes when she knows so much she simply replies that “there is always something new to learn.” She says that “clients are always asking me what’s new, and as a professional decorative artist I need to keep up with new trends.” It is this commitment to learning that took her to San Diego to take a Modello Master Workshop taught by Melanie Royals.
Voll says “Modellos have changed my business. There are so many different products that you can use with them, and so many artistic possibilities.” Recently, she submitted photos of three rooms that she completed using Modello stencils for Melanie Royals’ new book Modello By Design. It is a great honor to her that two of those rooms photographed were selected to be featured in the book, and she is also one of only 2 artisans from Illinois to be featured.
Her client relationships are built on trust. Her repeat customers often let her “run with it” when she comes on the job. One of her submissions for the book, also pictured in this article, was one such project. It is a large accent wall and bar done in circles and lines using Shimmered Suede and Celestial Leaf. In the same home, she also completed a You Got Waxed backsplash in the kitchen and a Portofino Plaster Ceiling with Modello. After completion of the job, Joanne received a letter from the client stating; “Your work is impeccable and stunning. Every room and area has a distinct and unique feeling and visual impact. Again, Marco and I can’t thank you enough for taking our house to a level of elegance we would have never achieved on our own.”
She takes pride in the fact that her business thrives not only by repeat customers, but also by word of mouth. In May she finished a treatment room for a local acupuncturist. Her customer was so thrilled with the results that in August she took the time to write Voll to express her gratitude on a job well done. The client said; “thank you for the absolutely amazing work you did in my space. You captured the essence of exactly what I wanted and helped me create a tranquil and inviting space for my patients…Every single patient has complimented the space and inquired about you and your services.” She continued on, saying “I highly recommend you to all that ask about your work and cannot wait to implement your services again in the future, both for professional and personal spaces.”
As a student of the Chicago Institute of Fine Finishes, Joanne has enjoyed the support of Kathy Carroll, and continues to attend classes yearly. She is also often the first to try out Kathy’s new offerings. She was the first to utilize Faux by Kathy’s custom tinting, as well as being the first to use the Institute’s spray booth. A problem solver by nature, Joanne is very adventurous when it comes to using new products. If a challenge arises with a new product, she is confident that she can find a way around it. If she needs further help, she knows Kathy will be there.
Joanne Voll can be reached at 630-334-8857 or at firstname.lastname@example.org