HGTV: Decorating Themes

May 11, 2007

I thought you may enjoy reading this how to guide that I wrote over at HGTV on creating the natural look in your home. It includes paint suggestions and a few tips that you may enjoy. In this article, I suggest using the Pottery Barn shelf below as a coffee table. Add four legs, top with glass, and voila! A rotating gallery of curiosities.

HGTV: Decorating Themes
I recently signed on with HGTV to write a bi-weekly column over on their site, so I’m overjoyed to have the opportunity to work for such a massive network on a regular basis now. If you’d like to read my articles over there, look for them starting in mid June on their website. Just search for my name and you’ll find them.

Want to know a secret? I’m not talking about my work today to boast because people out there are doing far more interesting things in life than I am. But for me, I’m happy with where I’m at because it’s where I want to be. My legs were unsteady when I left my career of 10 years behind to explore the life of a freelancer. It was scary! So I’m very excited about all the fun things I’m doing, and although I feel uncomfortable saying any of this on my blog, I’m proud of myself and hope I can be an example to others in a small way. You see, I was the girl that wrote under an alias (for 5 years!) for the school newspaper because I felt too shy to admit that I was the “roving reporter”. I didn’t want my peers and teachers to know I wrote for the paper because I felt that once the spotlight was on me, people would no longer say how they really felt about my work. As long as I remained anonymous, the feedback I heard felt genuine.

It actually took years for me to feel comfortable writing before an audience other than my parents or the stuffed animals in my bedroom that endured hours of my essay reading before them, listening intently in 3 tidy rows on my bed. It was only when a professor at Northeastern told me that I needed to read a very sensitive piece about myself to the class that broke me of my shyness. Because it was marked the best paper and counted towards my final grade, she insisted… So there I stood before a sea of envious, critical eyes as I went on to share with them a paper on a deeply personal topic. But the experience cured me, because afterwards, I felt no hesitation when asked to share my writing. It was a hurdle I needed to jump, a freedom for me. Reading before a class, something I had written, was the norm in school — but reading something so personal was not. That moment gave me wings.

So, as I sit here typing this today, I hope you can see the place where I come from inside of my heart. I think there’s so much me me me going on in the world, especially here in the states where humility isn’t a prized quality, that we forget the billions of others on this planet. I’m not bragging if I write about my articles or my work from time to time. I’m not trying to impress you because nothing really impresses anyone these days, does it? But I am trying to set a positive example because I know so many of you are scared to try new things, and you often write to me asking me how to take that first step into the uncharted waters of freelancing. I hope I can somehow encourage you to expand, grow, reach out, and explore new places in your life by setting a small example. You may be holding back in the one area that you need to actually jump into. Perhaps if you had that one moment of absolute freedom, like the one I experienced in that classroom, your dreams could come true. Think about it. What holds you back? Are you ready to jump?

(images from room and board, west elm, pottery barn, and

DIY, Objects

FLOR DIY: Hopskotch Rug

May 11, 2007

The second I saw this, I knew I had to share it here on decor8 — a fun FLOR project showing us how to create a hopskotch rug. I’d love to see this in a home where the only kids living there are the adults. I mean, seeing this in a kids space or school would be adorable, but somewhat expected, not so much of a conversation piece. But spotting this in an adults only space, in a home office or living room, now that would be completely fun. Not to mention great exercise. Now if only FLOR had a template for Twister… Sign me up!

FLOR DIY: Hopskotch Rug
To create the above, FLOR tells us to follow this handy guide where you’ll need:

1. FLOR Rug Map which includes layout, tile and design guidelines.
2. Number stencils from any craft store, or create your own with this template.
3. Bristol Brush or a Stippling Brush to dry brush paint onto FLOR tiles.
4. One to two 4oz. bottles of Opaque White airbrush paint. (Suggested: Createx brand from Bear Air).
5. Carpet knife for quick and easy trim of the Hop Skotch marquis.
6. Eight FLOR Tiles (they come with FLOR Dots). Toy Poodle was used to create the rug shown above.

Get hoppin’!

(image from flor)

Designers + Stylists

Brooklyn Designs 2007: Round-up!

May 10, 2007

Brooklyn Designs 2007 kicks off tomorrow, so in support of all the amazingly talented design collectives participating, this shout out is for you. Here’s a mini roundup of some of my favorite exhibitors (see them all here), I’m sure you’ll love them too. Known as the coming out party for the hottest furnishings designers, don’t miss this exciting event. Best part, it’s not trade only, it’s open to all.

Brooklyn Designs 2007: Round-up!The Puzzle Conference Table from 4-Pli, this funky sofa
from a+g, and amy helfand rugs.
Brooklyn Designs 2007: Round-up!Andrea Claire lighting, the Hovering coffee table from City Joinery,
anything at all made by Brave Space (wow), and the Bentboard table
designed Daniel Moyer Design.
Brooklyn Designs 2007: Round-up!The Marsh table and Symbol coat rack from DESU, the Title Danish chair
from elucidesign, or this gorgeous Bandwidth table by Eric Manigian.
Brooklyn Designs 2007: Round-up!An Eames-inspired Orville maple table (love this!) by McCullah Designs,
and Maureen Nollette’s fine art prints.
Brooklyn Designs 2007: Round-up!Of course, I have to mention Paul Loebach, whom I have a huge design crush on right now because, well look at his work, doesn’t that alone explain my adoration? The man is pure genius and in my eyes, has the potential to become huge. Then there’s Pryor & Williams, I like their Daily Bread board. I wish I had more images to share with you, but I am dying to see more images from Re-Surface. Their lighting is quite intriguing. Robert Martin is another talent, all of his tables interest me.

Brooklyn Designs 2007: Round-up!Brooklyn Designs 2007: Round-up! And last but certainly not least, Uhuru, Wud, and Zia Priven. God. More talents to watch. Can I just hire all three to come into my home and fill it with their amazing work? I would love to use the stoolen by Uhuru as a coffee table. By the way, these aren’t the latest from Zia Priven, in fact, their new lighting is all about exotic woods and will debut tomorrow at the show. I can’t wait to check them out, I’m hoping they’ll send me some photos so I can share it will all of you.

If you would like to attend Brooklyn Designs, it’s open to the public (vs. trade-only as so many design fairs are) and only $12* for admission and may be purchased at the show. Show hours are Friday, May 11th froom 10-8 pm; Saturday, May 12th from 10-7 pm; and Sunday, May 13 from 10-6 pm. Click here for additional information about shuttles, parking, directions, etc.

*Pre-registered members of the trade will receive free admission.


Wud Furniture: Sneak Preview from Brooklyn Designs

May 10, 2007

Keren from the gorgeous Wud furniture sent in a sneak preview for decor8 readers; these gorgeous pieces will be showing at the Brooklyn Designs 2007 show from May 11 – 13 – that’s tomorrow!

Wud Furniture: Sneak Preview from Brooklyn DesignsIf you recall, Wud was mentioned here a few months ago, they were part of the DIFFA’s Dining by Design event. Designers Barry Rice and Ted Allen incorporated some of their pieces in a space they created for the show, and the furniture was a huge hit. Looking at these beauties, you can clearly see why. Yum. I’ll take that bed, please. ;)

(images from wud)


Nest Decorating Blog

May 10, 2007

I really enjoy talking about other bloggers and sharing them with you, especially all the new decorating and creative blogs out there. There’s such an endless fountain of beauty and information that comes from so many places. It’s exciting to discover this endless stream, so refreshing!

Nest Decorating Blog Tamar from gorgeously green Shelburne, Vermont (a location we don’t hear about often in blogland), recently wrote in about her blog and decorating business, Nest Decorating. An interior decorator and crafter (she has an etsy store), Tamar writes about her passions in life that so many of us can relate to: decorating, gardening, and crafts. Of course, coming from her voice makes these topics fresh and unique, and seeing life in a Vermont setting is so appealing to me.

Great blog Tamar, thanks for sharing it with us!

(images from nest decorating)

Etsy Faves, Small Business

Shop Girl: Etsy, Anyone?

May 10, 2007

To keep our Shop Girl series rolling, I had to post this letter from Alicia today because I think opening an Etsy shop is on the minds of many lately. I receive a steady stream of emails on this very topic each week, so let’s open it up as a discussion to see what your experiences with Etsy have been, as either a shop owner or buyer, and hopefully, answer some of Alicia’s questions below.

Shop Girl: Etsy, Anyone?
“You write about different Etsy shops a lot, which I love, and I was thinking eventually I would open one. I wondered if you knew anything about having a shop in general. I’m concerned that perhaps a lot of sellers make stuff that just doesn’t sell, probably due to lack of buyers or publicity, or, how do you even know if your product is interesting to others? Anyway, do you know how well the average seller does? Is there a website that discusses this? I think Etsy is so amazing because there is so much inspiring stuff to buy and I can’t resist being so inspired as to do it myself.” -Alicia

Okay gang, we need to help Alicia out. Anyone have some advice to share? (If you’re a freelance writer, take this as a cue to write your next “How To” guide, there’s certainly enough books about eBay out there – someone write an Etsy book – quick! Even if you self publish on Lulu.)

Psst: If you’d like to read more small biz related posts, click on the words “shop girl” or “small biz” below.

Thanks for writing in Alicia!

(image from etsy store owner munieca)

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