Lunch & Lessons

Last Friday, I had the honor of being invited to a luncheon attended by many of the Atlanta designers whose blogs I follow.  I have to admit, it was a little surreal having my online world collide with the real world.  Women whose work I have studied in numerous publications, & who I feel I know personally because I read their blogs on a regular basis, were in attendance.  Of course, my natural tendency in intimidating social situations is to become practically mute & simply observe.  I tried my best to mingle, but I was still a little in shock that I was actually a part of the shindig, so I'm not sure I said more than 10 words the whole time.

Sweet Julie from Milk and Honey Home was the one who so kindly invited me to the lunch, & she shared some bits of wisdom on getting started in this business.  Although she was full of good advice, the main thing I took away was this: act like you're supposed to be a part of wherever you are, like you know what you are doing, and others will follow along.  I can be a perfectionist at heart who does not take failure or criticism well.  I have a hard time enjoying the learning process, & making mistakes just about does me in, but the only way to hone your craft is through continuous practice.  Luckily, my mistakes tend to only be detrimental to myself, never to my clients.  The good thing about design is that, unlike my previous profession, mistakes are not life or death matters, just embarrassing (& sometimes what starts as a mistake ends up being the best part of the design!).

I left the luncheon inspired by the beauty of the setting (Lindsey Hene hosted - talk about a gorgeous home!), & by the creative genius of the attendees.  I feel so lucky to have been included in the company of those who inspire me - being invited to an event like this honestly never even entered my realm of possibilities, so to be able to look back & record it here is more than a dream come true.

Hope you have a fabulous week!



A Renovated Cottage

     Last summer, I had the privilege of being asked to help these homeowners with the design & renovation of their new home.  A Cape Cod-ish style cottage, it was already a great home, but the homeowner had a vision for how truly wonderful it could be (not to mention she has fantastic taste, so working with them was a dream).  I was honored to take on the role of consultant & stager.  They blew out the small kitchen, & created the beautiful, light-filled space you see below.  It was so much fun for me to be a part of the ride.  Even more fun, the work I did for them last fall has to be redone due to the construction, so I still get to spend many enjoyable mornings at this home, reorganizing & styling bookcases, hanging pictures, moving furniture, etc.

     They expanded the kitchen, changed the floor plan, added an island, & most importantly, made these incredible windows the focal point .  The wife had a good idea of what she wanted, & used me as a sounding board & the deciding vote when it came down to Choice A vs Choice B.  For the island paint color, we had only an hour to pour through images, magazines, & paint decks before the final decision had to be turned over to the cabinet maker.  Happy to say that it turned out beautifully!

     When you are in the beginning stages of your career, having a client/boss/co-worker who believes in you  & gives you the green light to run with your ideas can make all the difference.  Helping with this huge project confirmed for me that the ideas in my head can translate into the real world.

     The home has wonderful built-ins in the two main living areas, and it has been a fun challenge for me to re-use their things in a fresh new way.  This is a real home, full of character & a few imperfections that make it all the more perfect in my eyes.  Nothing is off limits to kids, & their love of family is evident in each room.

     I have been so incredibly blessed with wonderful clients who not only encourage me but make it a goal to help me be successful.  This project has been the most fun learning experience.  Thank you for letting me be a part of your home!