Terje Arnesen established New Deal in 1993, a showroom that first started out with new, repurposed, as well as antique furniture, in addition to lighting, local art, and home accessories. The interior design business followed shortly thereafter as customers quickly realized they could get help putting their entire room or house together beyond the furniture pieces they just bought. Within the first year several homes had been completely designed and remodeled, mostly through personal referrals.
The retail portion of New Deal is just as important as the design and decorating projects and offers a large array of well known lines like Lee Industries, Arteriors Home, Mr.Brown, Bungalow 5, Made Goods, Barbara Cosgrove Lamps, Palacek, Jaipur Rugs, Global Views, and Studio One. Customers are always encouraged to bring their ideas, photos and measurements to the store so they can order the perfect item that fits their need, budget, and overall style.
"It is so nice that I still have all the loyal customers who have come to New Deal for more than 20 years any time they're in the market for something new - and I can’t tell you how many regular customers have become design clients – it’s a matter of trust and knowing you’ll get an honest professional opinion from somebody who actually listens to the client’s needs” says Arnesen. “If a project looks like my own living room I haven’t done my job – every project should reflect the person who lives there - not me.” Now he also gets the client's children as clients - "it's so nice - it's like working with family - and I've known them since they were in diapers!"
The client list is long, reflecting interiors that show a very diverse and personalized range of periods and styles. “I’m happy to go with any style the client likes – I’m just there to inspire and make sure it all works - and take it all to a whole other level. I always tell clients what makes their place interesting and personal is how you mix it up – that’s what gives it personality and makes it interesting. And please - add some color!”
Today the majority of design projects are located in the San Francisco Bay Area, but Arnesen also works in Sonoma, Los Angeles, New York City, Aspen, Dallas, and Chicago, but in the last few years he has also finished large projects in Bali and his native Scandinavia.
In April 2017 he also opened a new web shop and retail store named Norden Living with fellow Scandinavian Christopher Sharpe offering modern Scandinavian design. "I had wanted to go back to my roots for a long time and a chance conversation with an old friend (Christopher) two years ago was how it all started".
Before starting New Deal, Arnesen worked in marketing and public relations in the fashion industry. "That was the starting point - I was more excited helping to create apparel showrooms, fashion show set designs, and the special event decorations than promoting the new fashion trends - so I kinda jumped ship and started a store (I didn't even know my pine from oak!) - from one creative and highly visual industry to another - it was actually a lot easier than I thought!"