Home Staging Victoria BC

About Valerie Westra


I am no stranger to starting over. In fact, change has been the only constant in my life. And I have come to embrace change, even relish it, for the opportunities it has given me to find my true passion.

I was born in Ukraine (yes, that is the accent you hear!), and from a young age, I have been surrounded by art and by artists. Creating art – painting, drawing and decorating spaces – has always been a joyful escape for me. But it never occurred to me at that young age – and especially with my parents’ practical sensibilities – that I could or would make a living doing what I love

me 4Instead I pursued an education, and then a career in computer engineering – which is about as far away from artistry as you can imagine. My career path brought me to immigrate to Canada, where I settled in the Toronto area, and settled to raise my son. But no matter how successful I was in my corporate career as a business analyst, something always seemed to be missing. I was born in Ukraine (yes, that is the accent you hear!), and from a young age I have been surrounded by art and by artists. Creating art – painting, drawing and decorating spaces – has always been a joyful escape for me. But it never occurred to me at that young age – and especially with my parents’ practical sensibilities – that I could or would make a living doing what I love.

An unexpected change in the status of my health urged me to reconsider the next steps of my life. I realized that I had denied my passion for artistry long enough, and it was time that I made it a priority. I enrolled in interior design and home staging courses, left my corporate career behind, and decided to start my life and career anew on the other side of the country.

I launched At First Sight in Victoria in September 2009. The process of reinventing myself as an entrepreneur opened the door to making social connections that I had been denied in my previous career. I realize how much I need to connect with people, and how much I enjoy helping others make radical change in their lives.

I believe home staging plays an integral part in preparing people to make change. Clients who choose to stage their home for sale are, in many ways, starting over. Helping people make a transition from a place of empathy and experience has rekindled my lifelong joy for artistic expression.

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