FP fans, meet Dr. Amanda Van Emburgh, a therapist in Vienna, VA!
1) HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE THE STYLE OF YOUR THERAPY OFFICE?
Just weeks ago, Family & Child Therapy LLC moved offices down the street in historic downtown Vienna, Virginia.
My practice is now located in a bigger, brighter space with five offices, a larger lobby, a kitchenette, and space for my clinicians to gather and have lunch together.
Two of the new offices are still play-therapy equipped but now we have space for clinicians to run groups or have a family session. and we have also been able to expand our team. I have recently added a Board-Certified Art Therapist to our seasoned group of clinicians.
The offices are bright, playful, colorful, comfortable, inviting, and cozy. I tried to decorate the space in a way that would make our clients, ages 3+, feel like they are safe enough to share their stories.
2) WHAT VIBE DO YOU HOPE YOUR OFFICE GIVES YOUR THERAPY CLIENTS?
My intent in decorating the space in a calm but colorful way was to provide an inviting place for our clients of all ages, many of whom have suffered from trauma, to share their stories.
Play is the language of children, and at Family & Child Therapy we have several play therapists who use the therapeutic powers of play to help clients process their thoughts and feelings.
Our therapists who work with older clients use other mind-body and brain-based therapies to assist clients in healing.
My favorite piece of art in the space was created by local therapist, yoga teacher, and freelance artist Carolyn Wolfe, LMFT – “Safe Place”. It hangs in the entry hallway. She also collaborated with me to create special, smaller works of art to match this one, naming each of the five offices in the space (Haven, Harbor, Hope, Grow, and Play.)
3) DO YOU HAVE ANY CREATURE COMFORTS IN YOUR OFFICE FOR CLIENTS?
We offer clients coffee, tea, and filtered water upon arrival.
We have a waiting room that divides into a space for children (with a reading nook and train table) and adults (with a virtual check-in system via iPad that notifies their therapist about their arrival with an email).
Each room has “fidget” toys and gadgets that our clients of all ages can engage with during a session if desired.
4) WHO DESIGNED AND DECORATED YOUR THERAPY OFFICE? DID YOU GET HELP FROM PROFESSIONALS, COLLEAGUES, FRIENDS, OR FAMILY?
I designed and decorated each therapy office with advice from family members and friends. I bought most of the furniture and decorative accents from World Market, Target, Home Goods, IKEA, and Etsy.
The sandtray miniatures were collected over the years from my travels.
My logo, which is featured on my website and prominently outside the building, was designed by my friend from Kindergarten, Sima Nasr. She has her own successful website design business now and helps me maintain mine.
5) ANY ADVICE FOR THERAPISTS WHO ARE JUST STARTING OUT AND DESIGNING THEIR OFFICE FOR THE FIRST TIME, OR SEASONED THERAPISTS LOOKING TO REDESIGN THEIR OFFICES?
I would advise therapists to consult with other therapists and their websites for ideas! Some of my best ideas came from visiting my friends’ amazing spaces.
Amanda Van Emburgh is a PsyD, RPT-S (Registered Play Therapist – Supervisor), and owner of Family & Child Therapy LLC in Vienna, VA…