Decorator gives clients ‘A Nu Vue’ on home redesign

by Zacch Estrada-Petersen

Gina Hough, wife of Mount Holly Mayor Bryan Hough, helps clients redesign their homes. (Courtesy of Gina Hough)

MOUNT HOLLY – The expression ‘out with the old, in with the new’ is fairly common. Less common, however, is keeping the ‘old’ and learning to see it in a whole new light. As owner and creator of A Nu Vue, a Mount Holly-based home redesign business, Gina Hough aims to do exactly that.

“I like to take as many existing furnishings, pictures and accessories that are already in a home or business and use them in a new and different way,” Hough said, “giving the owner ‘A Nu Vue’ with what they already own.”

Having grown up in Mount Holly, home redesign isn’t what Hough had originally set out to do. The East Gaston High School alum graduated from Appalachian State University in 1991 with a B.S. in Elementary Education and began her career as a teacher, taking seven years off in between teaching stints to raise her two children – Mattie, now 13, and Jack, 10. Decorating, however, was always something she loved to do.

“I have always had a knack for putting furniture and accessories together,” Hough said. “My mom tells people all the time about how when I was a girl and she would be at work, I used to rearrange the furniture and move her accessories and pictures around. She would come home and be amazed at the transformation. She says she would say to herself, ‘Wow! That really looks so much better the way she did it.’”

Hough’s life, and the creation of her business, has been a testament to her ability to change the way she views the world. After a total of 11 years of teaching, she chose to leave the profession in pursuit of what had become a true passion.

“The past five years I taught first grade at Ida Rankin Elementary in Mount Holly,” Hough said.  “It is an excellent school with top-notch staff who were like my second family. But I had lost the joy of teaching.”

As she struggled to balance life, family and her teaching career, the combination of the three had begun to take its toll.

“I just no longer enjoyed it and it was affecting who I was as a person, wife and mother,” Hough said. “Also, I felt like my children were growing up before my eyes and I was missing out.”

So, with the blessing of her husband of 21 years, Bryan Hough – who also happens to be the mayor of Mount Holly – she stepped out on her own.

“He knew it was something I really enjoyed and was good at, and it allowed much more flexibility in my schedule,” she said. “I have come to realize that the older my children get, the more they seem to need me. I hated having to choose between a meeting after school and one of my daughter’s games.”

The process for her business is relatively simple. For a $50 consultation fee, Hough comes to a client’s home or business and offers them suggestions and advice on colors, furniture arrangement, accessories and the like.

“Sometimes an hour is all I need to spend with a client,” Hough said. “But most of the time, after our initial meeting, the client would like me to return and do the redesign for them.”

The redesign services go for $75 per hour.

“There are so many people who have hired me noting that they just do not have a clue about how to decorate or are intimidated by making decisions on decorating,” Hough said. “I come in and do it for them, and they are so relieved not to have to be the one to do it.” q

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