Loving Out Loud: Lights & Feet

Yesterday was single-handed the most stressful day I have ever had since launching Courtney Lake Interiors.  Everything that could go wrong, went wrong and so in major, wildly unexpected ways.  Somewhere in the middle of the day, I called The Partner close to tears and he talked me down.  Honestly, that man is worth his weight in gold….

Being a one man band, there is no room (or time) to curl in a corner, eat Doritos and wonder if it is too late to join the military.  So being the big (baby) boy I am, I picked myself off the ground and went looking for lighting.  Fortunately, one of my favorite stores in San Francisco H.D. Buttercup did not disappoint…

It’s large, it’s sculptural, it’s reasonably priced (for a fixture that size) and it’s available for pick-up.  Waiting on confirmation from the client so I can pull the trigger.

In unrelated news, the other thing I am loving now in my life is this…

Yes, it’s a foot.  But a really awesome foot sculpture from Noir.  For a man who hates feet, I was drawn to it.  My friend and design mentor says it gives her the heebies because it reminds her of all the body parts being mailed around in Canada.  My other friend says it makes her think of zombies.  Personally, it makes me think of my college friend whose favorite phrase was ….

Don’t make me break my foot off in your a$$!

And honestly after yesterday, no truer words could have been spoken.

Okay, time for me to man up and start my day of tile hunting and sketching.  So tell me, what thing are you currently craving this fine day?

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Joyus Recap: Why Did He Do That……

Hey y’all !

It’s the  final week of voting for Joyus.com’s Viewer Choice Challenge!  I thought it would be fun to recap the process and explain some of my design decisions .  To give a brief reminder of the contest, myself and 6 bloggers were given a blank “white room” in which to create a living room space.  Each blogger was given access to artwork, furniture and accessories from a variety of companies such as H.D. Buttercup and 20×200 from which to decorate the room in 4 hours.

I opted to go with the idea of color, pattern and texture for my space after spying a great rug that I thought could be the unifying item for the space.

In all truth, that rug was a god-send as it helped me quickly cull through the various furniture and accessory options.  It took me about a half hour to pull the items I wanted to use in the space.   The rug inspired my selection of the purple chairs and grey couch as well as the inlaid trays.   With selections made it became a job all about staging and accessorizing.

So to address the “elephant” in the room – the vase with the tray on it that I used as a side table.  I have read through the numerous comments  on Joyus.com and to address the concerns actually, it was pretty stable.   But in all likelihood if I was to do this in a room that was not for “show”, I would epoxy the tray to the vase for added stability.  However, I think the point I made was valid – look for items you already have in your home and recycle them.  A tray plus an old pot could just as easily become an end table …… think outside of the box so you don’t have to dig inside your wallet.

I also got some flack for my “ban the bookcase” (BTB) comment but I still stand by it.  Unless bookcases are staged correctly, they become a catchall for clutter –and clutter my friends destroys even the best designs.  By stacking the books under the chairs, not only was I giving the chairs additional visual heft, I was using space that would normally be overlooked.  I love stacking large art books beside chairs, under furniture or in little niches.  I think of them as sculpture.   Honestly I can’t say the number of times I have found people sitting on the floor flipping through a new discovery.  As for them getting dirty, I have a dog who sheds so I dust once a week and have never had an issue with damage.

However, what surprises me most is the feedback I have gotten on the gallery wall.  Evidently, the votes are evenly split – folks either love a gallery wall or hate them with the same passion as they reserve for telemarketers.  Personally, like french fries, I have yet to meet a gallery wall I did not love.  Let it be noted that we weren’t given any large-scale pieces of artwork to use, so I opted to fill the wall space ala gallery style.  It allowed me to use the variety small prints we had on hand and create a unifying theme via their frame finish.  Using the paper templates were a quick and easy way to get the pictures perfectly placed in a quick manner.

Overall, I am still happy with the room I created.  Are there things I would change about it?  Sure!  I would love to have fresh flowers and real plants.  I would love to have a large-scale art piece for above the couch.  I wish I had added another end table beside the purple chairs.  And that list could go on…..

In the end, this was an exercise in thinking on your feet, using what you have in  interesting ways and sharing some tips on how to navigate the tricky terrain of decorating for yourself.  What I can say is that I had a TON of fun and learned a lot about how to work on camera.  My biggest takeaway from all of this is my newfound respect for Ryan Seacrest.  Honestly how he smiles for the camera, remembers what to say and doesn’t sweat like he just ran a 5K is beyond me.  I bow down to his overly tanned, slightly plastic self…….

Okay peeps, I am officially solidly in 3rd place.  I harbor no notion that I may win this thing, but I just don’t want to come in last.  I will even take Mr. Congeniality (which we all know is a cop out for the person they feel least threatened by).  I just don’t want to be last, so if you can help a brotha out, I would appreciate it.  Voting closes April 23 and each time you vote, you are entered to win a $1500 shopping spree from Joyus.com.

Okay I am off to see if I can precariously place any more trays on wayward vases!

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Spring Is Here….

Last night was the kind of evening I daydreamed about for years since moving to San Francisco.  I went to the Joyus Viewer’s Choice Launch Party at HD Buttercup.  I along with 3 of the other bloggers who participated in the challenge drank, smoked and nibbled on delicious yummies thanks to local Bay Area food trucks.  I was lucky enough to have The Partner and one of my good friends join me for the evening.  It was surreal seeing my face plastered on multiple screens throughout the store……

I left the party walking on air and just overjoyed that I was able to be part of this fantastic group of people.

So I woke up this morning and was still riding the “serotonin wave”.  I went downstairs to grab a cup of coffee and as I was savoring the rush of caffeine as filtered into my system, I noticed that my little patio garden was coming alive once again.  Things are in bloom!  I grabbed my camera and took a few shots – much to the chagrin of my neighbors who saw me with my bed head mumbling to myself with a camera and a mug of coffee……

I am now inspired to spend a few  hours this weekend in the yard to hang the outdoor lights, replant a few dead plants and add a new layer of mulch.

Ahhh Spring, I am so glad you arrived!  So has the “Spring Bug” bit you?  Are you itching to do some outdoor projects?

On a side note, thank you to everyone who has voted for my room on Joyus.com. You can vote for my room multiple times and each time you vote, you are entered to win a $1500 shopping spree from Joyus, so it pays to click especially in light that none of us won the mega lotto…..

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