• Cassandra Russell

Meeting Media Empire Creator Debbie Travis: From Home Design TV Producer To Inspiring Women's Tu


One thing I find deeply inspiring is to hear women speakers share not only their success stories but their tales of early struggle and how they turned it around. There are usually some hilarious stories to accompany these early beginnings. I make this point because British-Canadian TV personality Debbie Travis gets check marks in all areas. This woman has got it covered when it comes to TV production and personal branding. She has been awarded 4 Geminis and 21 nominations for television production and hosting along with 3 prominent book awards. She shared her warm funny and friendly speaking style with The Women Of Influence last week. This Evening Series Event featured Debbie at the Grand Banking Hall in Toronto. The night began with time to network, socializing and sip on a drink. The audience was filled with bright passionate women. This venue with it’s high creme marble arches provided the perfect the atmosphere for her share empire building stories of how she created her 10 books, 8 on design and 2 on advice along with a weekly syndicated newspaper column read by 6 million people. Debbie was at the event to promote her new book: Design Your Next Chapter: How To Realize Your Dreams And Reinvent Your Life.

Her start in 1995, began with creating one of North America’s first decorating shows, Debbie Travis’ Painted House. (I began watching this one in 1998 which helped to fuel my love of home design. She made painting walls seem easy and took paint to a whole new level. )This successful series was followed by Debbie Travis’ Facelift, From the Ground Up and All for One. Debbie has also made guest appearances on Oprah, Regis and Kelly, Marilyn Denis, Good Morning America and many more.

Her background story reveals that she was born in England, where she transformed her early training at Art College and a career as a fashion model into television production. She married and moved to Canada at 30, started a paint and design business and became a leader in the paint and decorating business in North America. Her special talent for design coupled with her dry British wit made Debbie Travis a beloved television icon around the world.

Her speech went on to share an insider’s view into the humourous beginnings of her career. She told a unbelievably funny story of how she had hot glue gunned together some skirts with friends in her early days. They wore them out to the bar only to find that the glue melted under hot temperatures leaving her friends in a odd position. It seemed as if the audience was constantly laughing at her anecdotes. The evening included a book signing where Debbie met with this lively group of guests.

Later on the night, I got my picture taken with Debbie and got to interview her. I asked her if there was one turning point moment where you knew you were successful and had reached a state of contentment? She said. “No there is not one moment where everything comes together, but many great ones along the way. It just keeps progressing along the way. If you have young children 3-5 yrs old, maybe it's not the best time to plan a huge business. Give it some time before you move forward.”

As a creative person I can relate. There is always another creative passion project for me to dive into. However, thinking mindfully about your next steps is advice worth journaling about. Moving forward requires taking time out to vision first with lots of ideas to draw from.

Her latest endeavor includes is hosting Tuscan Getaways. Debbie’s website describes the adventure this way :

“The Tuscan Girls' Getaway is an adventure designed around everything Debbie believes today's hardworking woman dreams of. Villa Reniella is a sanctuary where you will regain clarity and purpose and of course, have lots of fun. The week embraces the beauty of Tuscany as we explore medieval hilltop villages, breathtaking landscapes and everything this region has to offer.

We enjoy local, organic cuisine, both expertly prepared by Chef Francesco and at a variety of traditional restaurants. We walk and bike through our 100-acre estate of olive groves, chestnut woods, vineyards, lavender field and surrounding hills. There is always time to relax around the stunning glass infinity pool or sit quietly with a glass of something delicious under an ancient olive tree....”

I have traveled to Italy and through the Tuscan region. I can definitely say Italy is one of my favourite places because the pace is romantic and slowed down. It is the perfect place to getaway from the hustle and bustle of North American to “hear yourself think”.

I am adding this Getaway to my bucket list!

Debbie’s perseverance and accomplishment in the media space, especially as a female contributor should be a noted inspiration for everyone. Debbie gets my lifelong adoration because she has taken on a similar ”creative joy journey” and need to encourage people to see the bright side in a way that celebrates life! As a designer, television host and producer, best-selling author, sought-after public speaker, and now host of her Tuscan getaways Debbie has created an impressive business empire worth noting.

RESOURCES: DEBBIE TRAVIS - WEBSITE

WOMEN OF INFLUENCE


26 views