January 10th, 2022 | by Rabun Martin
Meet Gary Parker. Mr. Parker was my mentor over 25 years ago. He was the buyer and design genius behind Hilda Flack Interiors. He has traveled all over the world, his work has been featured in every high-end magazine your fingers have ever touched, his knowledge of furniture and fine accessories is unsurpassable, and he is one of the nicest most humble people you will ever meet. The last time I saw Gary was 20 years ago in Bali on a buying trip. So when he came into Lulu's the other day, we did not even recognize each other! He commented on my store and my merchandise, and pointed out all of the things he loved and why he loved them; it was like he was speaking my own language.
When he finally made it up to the counter, he asked me, "Do I know you?" My first response was, "I recognize your voice." What makes this so crazy is that Gary was a storyteller. He could romance anything! He taught me how to design a home with things that my client loved and would want to keep and invest their money in. Gary was so passionate about everything he selected for Flack's Interiors, he truly loved his job and his amazing work was proof.
I love telling stories too, if you haven't noticed my "HandMade Tales" all through out my store. They are little bits of history about the makers and their creations. I have them featured on vintage book covers that have been painted and distressed. I loved sharing these with Gary because I knew he would appreciate them.
Some people do not realize the impact that they have on your life. I don't think Gary had any idea what kind of impression he made on the younger Rabun, and I am not sure I did either until I saw him recently and heard his voice. He will forever be a design icon of mine and a throw back to true design, when quality mattered and you bought items to become heirlooms.
So remember, someone is always watching and listening, so be kind and share your knowledge. Leave your mark!!