ANDERSON — Local designer Jessica Madison had a real-life mountaintop experience last week.

“I was standing on top of a mountain with my family — up as high as you could go in the Rockies — and I kept catching myself thinking, ‘This is all because I took a shot.’ That’s the coolest thing.”

Jessica and her husband, Jared, and their 11-year-old twin sons, Nick and Noah, experienced their first family vacation together while Jessica was a featured speaker at the Old House Vintage Market in Loveland, Colorado.

The trip was the icing on the cake made up of several sweet opportunities that have come her way as a result of being an Instagram influencer.

“Influencers” are popular Instagrammers who have established credibility in a certain niche and are able to influence the purchasing decisions of followers because of their expertise.

Quitting her job at Pendleton Elementary School to devote her full attention to her popular home décor and fashion Instagram, @jessicamadisonhome, was way out of her comfort zone, Jessica admits.

“My mom and I went to a Mandisa concert a few months ago, and they were talking about getting out of your comfort zone and taking risks. And I remember then thinking, ‘They’re talking to me.’ This last year has been so transformative,” she said. “I just really decided to go all in.”

This week, Jessica will be a featured designer and speaker for the third straight year at the Indianapolis Home Show.

Teaming up with Indianapolis-area designers Liz Henderson and Jenny Hollander in the State Fairgrounds’ South Pavilion, Jessica will take the dining room of a blank 20-by-30-foot space and turn it into a designer’s dream on a budget.

“This is the first year we’re doing a studio space, so there will be a bedroom, a dining room and a kitchen,” Jessica explained. “There will be no walls — it’s an open concept. It will be interesting to see how our three styles flow.”

Besides collaborating with other designers, connecting with her followers is one of the things Jessica likes most about the home show.

“It’s always nice to see them or thank them — I couldn’t do anything without their support,” she said.

Jessica describes her decorating style as “boho farmhouse,” which can also be seen in her own home on Anderson’s northwest side.

She and husband Jared have spent the past six years transforming their 1970s tri-level fixer-upper into a showcase of Jessica’s decorating talents.

“I posted a picture on Facebook and a bunch of my friends were like ‘You need to post this more.’ So that’s really how it got started,” she explained. “I just did it on my own for fun in my spare time, and then it just became this crazy ride for the last two years.”

Whatever the future holds, Jessica is certain about one thing: she plans to stay true to herself.

“It’s just strange to me, sometimes people look at me like I’m a celeb, but I’m just a mom,” she said. “I’ve always said I will never be someone on Instagram that I wouldn’t be if you met me in Kroger.”

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