Lux & Concord


Heather Fritz is the Creative and Marketing Director for CEDARst, a real estate, hospitality, entertainment, and start-up company that touches so many parts of our awesome city.

We’re a little behind on our Women We Love post for this week because the post-Labor Day vacation hangover has set in for real. BUT, this post is worth the wait, and right in time for #womencrushwednesday love! Heather Fritz is the Creative and Marketing Director for CEDARst, a real estate, hospitality, entertainment, and start-up company that touches so many parts of our awesome city.

She specifically works as the sole interior designer for FLATS/CEDARst, and their micro housing offerings. That means she designs all the model units, lobbies and common areas in buildings like the Historic Lawrence House, The Ardus in River North and more. We talked to her about trends in architecture, why it’s important to speak up, and how we can make the most of our own spaces this season…

What did you want to be “when you grew up”?
I wanted to be a travel photographer! I got a camera at a young age, and a lot of emphasis was placed on art in general when I was growing up. My family would road trip from Wyoming to Pennsylvania and I always had my camera on me, photographing the landscape in between.

Describe micro-housing and its importance for us.
It’s all about discovering a way to live “smaller” and really thinking about not only one’s own apartment but existing outside of those four walls and interacting with the community. At FLATS, we introduce amenities that expand your living space. “Micro” to me is less about technical square footage and more about introducing smart layouts and multi-use rooms.

You even have one with a secret room! Tell us about that!
From the outside, you wouldn’t know that behind the hidden door lies a loungey club type room that also serves our office as a meeting space during the day. I used a tactile black wallpaper for the hallway entering the room to distract the eye, ‘keeping the secret’ which is also translated through a different pattern in the room itself. With custom shelving I designed, a velvet sectional, vintage mirror I bought years ago that was just waiting for the right project, and a mini-bar, the room feels very luxe while still serving a purpose as an extension of our office space. It’s multi-purpose and a fun break away from that day-to-day.

What are ways we can make the most of small spaces in our own homes?
Arrangement of your existing furniture is really important to maximizing every square inch, I encourage you to rearrange, you never know what kind of nook might open up that would allow a small desk of shelving unit. Also add plants, I know it sounds like an odd answer here, but even small ones in a window sill add so much life and texture to a space and there are really good options for those without a green thumb.

How would you describe Chicago architecture overall?
Diverse! During my time at CEDARst, we’ve seen so many different architectural styles through the eras jut in our own portfolio, from The Bush Temple, a French Chateauesque style building from 1901 to new, ground-up construction. Every neighborhood in Chicago has their own sort of iconic structure from the Garfield Park Conservatory to The Rookery, beautiful buildings are everywhere in this city. . Architects across the city are really pushing the boundaries with unique shapes for new buildings, Aqua for example. No two Flats buildings look the same and a lot of that is thanks to the hard work we put in to preserve historic architecture.

What is the best part of your job?
The freedom to use my creativity at an integrated firm. My role at the company grew vastly and quickly from when I first started over 8 years ago, and a lot of that is due to having a diverse skill set. Working in a small business environment where we’re dealing with everything from finance to construction to marketing, there’s a need for everyone’s expertise to compliment one another and to work off of each other’s strengths. With my strength lying in all things creative from interior design to branding and communications, I’m able to lead many stages of a project which is pretty exciting.

What is the best professional advice you’ve ever received?
As a woman, to not be afraid to have a voice in the room.

And what is your favorite quote?
“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou

Lux & Concord

Published online on September 4th, 2019 at 9:05 PM.