By Laura Raines, for the AJC
Three years ago JoAnne Nelson was a real estate agent who saw many beautiful custom-made draperies and upholsteries in clients’ homes and decorated model houses.
But having custom drapes made for her own home proved to be a tedious process. Locating a shop, communicating her needs and wondering about the quality of the workmanship made her think there had to be a better way. She bought an established upholstery workshop in an old house in Smyrna and revamped it into Atlanta Custom Interiors.
“Friends thought it a bit extreme — to buy a business because I wanted drapes made my way, but I wouldn’t have done it if I didn’t think I could make a profit,” said Nelson, owner and operating manager.
Last year she knocked down the old house to rebuild the