Joanna van Dijk’s journey from psychologist in Holland to home design store owner in Miami isn’t as big a leap as it may seem. In fact, The Yellow Canopy owner’s time in private practice was just a part of the eclectic global experience (real estate agent in the South of France, airline employee traveling the globe) that brought her to where she is today.
“I was always interested in home design,” says van Dijk. “During my real estate experience in the South of France I met so many people as both clients and designers, and my interest and love in home design really ignited. With that interest in home design, experience and contacts, I decided five years ago to open an eclectic home décor store.”
First at home in the Bird Road Art District, van Dijk moved The Yellow Canopy (which she describes as “an eclectic mix of French Baroque, shabby chic vintage and statement accessories”) to the Falls area in order to support her desire for not only more space, but a warehouse for her constantly growing inventory. Since then she has welcomed a variety of clients—from designers to those looking to add a unique touch to their home—to the shop and has built a reputation for balancing comfort with style.
“A home is extremely important and you should feel comfortable and happy in your own house,” says van Dijk, who imports the pieces herself to keep prices reasonable. “We like to advise clients how to change their house into their home. We encourage them to mix different styles to create a unique and personalized feel. An individual approach is important.”
That kind of outside-the-box thinking inspired van Dijk to create another aspect to her business in the form of a rental section, using her unique pieces to complement other rental companies more classic options. “For example, we rent our gorgeous baroque chairs for the bride and groom at a wedding,” she says. “We can add something unique for quinces, birthdays, baptisms, showers. You name it. And it’s all on the website.”
In addition to her blossoming rental business, van Dijk also created a studio space in her warehouse, allowing photographers to use both the space and the furniture for a reasonable fee.
Though the event and styling work may add new duties to her daily business life, van Dijk says her true love comes from the hunt and from finding “that one piece that can transform a room.” Her global take on design also helps drive her buys. “I like to travel, to meet other people and get inspired by other cultures,” she says. “Every time we have a container coming in I am thrilled. I know what is inside, but it’s always an exciting happening to get the items out of the container and bring them inside The Yellow Canopy.”
The Yellow Canopy is located in The Warehouses by the Falls at 8787 SW 132nd St, Miami, FL 33176. For more information, please visit theyellowcanopy.com or call 305-252-2266. The Yellow Canopy is open Monday – Friday: 11 am – 6 pm, Saturday: 11 am – 5 pm, and closed on Sunday.