URBANUS designs was created by Jeffrey Jensen in response to what he perceived as a gap in the design market of the Front Range.
After a successful career in retail, culminating with Jeffrey managing a business with an annual turnover of $1.1M per year, he graduated from the Colorado Institute of Art in Denver with a double focus on Furniture Design and Interiors. His Furniture Design career took him around the states making presentations to companies such as Target, CB2, Bed Bath and Beyond, Office Max, and Staples. In this time, he won two ASFD Pinnacle Design Awards, and his work even made it onto the set of “Will and Grace” on NBC.
As Design Director for a lamp and furniture design company just outside of NYC, in addition to domestic travel, he travelled to China to establish new relationships with manufacturers and oversee production of designs. He also became familiar with international design expositions, such as Maison&Objet, ICFF, Decorex, and Tendence. And it was about this time that he began to feel that he didn’t want to design just elements of an interior, but the whole environment.
In facilitating that transition, Jeffrey landed at Lobel Modern, a top-end gallery of mid-century modern furniture, lighting, art, and objects in Manhattan. Working directly under the owner, Evan Lobel, the exposure to the crème-de-la-crème of design was as much an education as Jeffrey’s time in school. This role expanded and challenged his understanding of design, as well as instilled a huge amount of knowledge about design movements, notable designers and manufacturers, and art. Effectively, the role became a cornerstone in the foundation of Jeffrey’s aesthetic, and his ability to interpret other styles and forms, and how to mix those successfully. And then London called….
During his twelve-and-a-half years living in London, Jeffrey worked on yachts and high-end homes around the UK, Ireland, Europe, and The US, gaining significant experience in Architectural Lighting Design and honing his attention to details to transcend an interior to an experience. He managed a practice in London for seven-plus of those years, and that role ushered him into Hospitality Design – bars and restaurants. During his time there, his practice was named one of the top-ten of London’s hospitality design practices. But after more than fifteen years living in NYC and London, and with other influences, it became apparent that it was time to return “home.”
Jeffrey returned to Colorado Springs (he graduated from Rampart High School) in 2015 with his husband Mark, and they found a house desperately in need of Jeffrey’s abilities. They also started an IT consultancy, for which Jeffrey serves as CEO and Administrator. Jeffrey has enjoyed focusing on updating and improving their house, and that time has also allowed him to assess the design market in this area and to find resources and suppliers. It has afforded him time to establish relationships with businesses and even other designers in the area, and during that time he determined that there was a gap in the design market.
Jeffrey notes, “There are decorators who do all things decorative – paint colours and wall finishes, soft furnishings, furniture specifications, and so on…. And then there are Architects and Builders who do the technical – space planning, technical drawings and layouts. But, there isn’t someone who has experience from both realms and who can bridge them – or at least no one who is marketing themselves that way.” Someone who can integrate the decorative with the technical, and someone who can create the details that transform an interior into an experience. This is the niche that Jeffrey saw, and why he created URBANUS designs.