Steph Howles Achieves Excellence and Wins Coveted Grand Winner Trophy at the 2023 Dulux Select Decorator Awards
The Dulux Select Decorator scheme hosted its annual Gala Dinner and Awards in November, to celebrate its Dulux Select Decorators cohort and honour the 2023 award winners, including Steph Howles who was awarded Grand Winner. The coveted awards bring together painters and decorators from across the country to recognise their exceptional craftmanship, industry leadership and commitment to customer service.
Coinciding with the National Painting and Decorating Show 2023, The Fitch and Bristle, a virtual pub which was launched by Dulux Select Decorators during lockdown, was brought to life at the event providing a back drop to the pre-dinner reception and a post-dinner party with a live band.
An esteemed panel of Dulux Academy Skill Development Consultants, Mark Rigby, Tony Pearson-Young and Nicola Holmes, rigorously judged submissions based on visual appeal, preparation and repairs, innovation, product knowledge, and customer testimonials.
Steph Howles, owner of SHOW HOMES, triumphed over stiff competition, collecting two wins in the ‘Use of Colour’ and ‘Exterior Project under £2,499’ categories. Her award-winning submissions demonstrated exemplary skill across all aspects of decorating and customer care. From initial colour consultations where she advised on complementary schemes, to flawless prep work, surface repairs and expert final paint and wallpaper finishes, Steph’s keen eye for design and dedication to first-class service was evident, producing professional results that left her customers delighted.
Steph commented: “I am genuinely still in shock that I have won the Decorator of the Year award. After dedicating myself to the Dulux Select Decorators scheme for over 20 years, winning this award is extraordinarily meaningful – marking my proudest moment yet. Being in that room filled with respected industry decorators, when they called out my name was truly an emotional and unforgettable moment that I will cherish. To have my creative vision and years of passion be recognised this way is wonderfully validating. I’m so thankful to the Dulux Select scheme, my team, and clients for helping make this possible after 20 committed years of a career I take so much pride in.”
Vickie Mather, Dulux Academy and Dulux Select Decorators Lead, said: “I was honoured to present the Grand Winner trophy to Steph Howles this year. She’s a brilliant decorator and advocate for the trade and Dulux Select Decorators. It was great to see Steph so delighted to achieve this recognition after 20 dedicated years within the scheme.
“The standard of entries we receive get better every year and I’d like to congratulate all who were shortlisted and achieved awards on the night. Events like this are a great endorsement of the community we have built within the Dulux Select Decorators scheme and the support from all suppliers was very generous.
“At this year’s awards, we also held a supplier-based charity raffle and raised an amazing £1,640 for the Rainy Day Trust – a vital charity partner supporting Dulux Select Decorators facing difficulties in challenging times – demonstrating the incredible generosity and community spirit of our network.”
As part of the celebration, seven talented Dulux Select Decorators members joined Steph in receiving category awards:
Painted Interior Project to the value of £2,499: Gabor Kondor
Painted Interior Project over the value of £2,500: Mark Hutchinson
Wallpaper Project to the value of £2,499: Georgie Baker
Wallpaper Project over the value of £2,500: Simon Medlin
Exterior Project over the value of £2,500: Stuart Yates
Spray Finish: Nigel Bennett
New Generation Supporter: Les Copstake
In addition, highly commended awards were also presented to:
Painted Interior Project to the value of £2,499: Ashley Woodcock & David Barrett
Painted Interior Project over the value of £2,500: Georgie Baker
Use of Colour: Ben Tanton and Gary Marsh
Wallpaper Project over the value of £2,500: Gary Marsh
Exterior Project to the value of £2,499: Dean Barguss
Joining the Dulux Select Decorators scheme is open to all skilled professionals striving for excellence meaning all nominees at the awards are already the best of the best. To qualify, applicants need a minimum of three years’ experience and should have managed their own business for at least a year. By becoming members, they gain access to Dulux Select Decorator branded assets, subsidised rates on Dulux Academy courses, and a supportive community, complete with social events. They also become part of the exclusive forum to keep up to date with fellow Dulux Select Decorators, and receive monthly news updates, regular competitions, and product discount vouchers.
For more information about Dulux Select Decorators, or to find out how to join the scheme, visit: www.duluxselectdecorators.co.uk