I Now Remember….

I have been working on a home yoga studio this week for a client.  It is a fairly quick turn around project since she needs the space revamped by May 1 and I leave for a vacation and a wedding starting on April 24.  The design includes a vinyl decal on the mirrored closet doors in the shape of a lotus.


I proudly patted myself on the back when the client flipped for the idea and quickly ordered the decal.  Today I installed it and remembered why I have not suggested a vinyl decal in over a year.  Even the simplest ones are a bear to put up, but thanks to my ingenuity (errr….stupidity) and the need to divide the decal between two sliding closet doors, I had to split the  decal into four pieces.

Have you ever tried to put up something that instantly sticks to anything, has to be aligned perfectly  and is a lint magnet? Now multiply that by four.   It wasn’t a pretty scenario.  There were curse words, a tear or two and the realization why I hated vinyl decals.   I finally called upon The Partner for assistance and he came to my rescue.  But even with his help, it took us almost 2 hours to install the decal.  We had to tweak the piece, torque some elements and perform some DIY surgery with my Exact-o knife, but in the end, I am really happy with the results….

I don’t even mind the brass molding on the doors – it almost acts like a frame in this scenario.  Well that is what  I keep telling myself since I can’t change the color.  Denial is a well-used tool in my wheelhouse this week.  So I  still have to paint out the trim and molding, hang artwork and arrange furniture, but I think by early next week, I will be done with the project.  Cross your fingers for me!

However, for the moment, I am going to bask in the glory that is called a lotus decal and write myself a large note NEVER to recommend one to a client again.  Well at least one that I have to install……

For those of you who have entered the April Give Away, thank you!  For those of you who have not, what are you waiting for?  I am basically giving you the dishes off my table!  What are you waiting on?  Blood?    Remember that the give away closes on Monday and you can enter multiple times!

Design Board: At-Home Yoga Studio


Last week, I received confirmation from a client that her at-home yoga studio was a go!  I presented her three designs all centered around her desire to have a dedicated room in her rental apartment in which to practice yoga.  She recently completed her yogi training and is fulfilling a lifelong dream of opening a yoga practice.  Through a series of random events, the client was introduced to me and we discussed the room’s functions several weeks ago.  The studio would function as a space where she would counsel clients, perform body work, massage and some floor exercises.  The pieces in the room are going to be subjected to being moved around, massage oil, sweat and incense, so the pieces had to be hardworking as well as pleasing to the eye.  It was also made clear that the mirrored closet doors had to be dealt with since the client “hated them”.

The room in question, while spacious, is in the basement of a rental apartment which  brings some limitations including:

1) No structural or permanent changes can be done…..

2) One small window so no real source of natural light in the space

3) Mirrored closet doors

4) Wall-to-wall Berber carpet

5) 1.5 foot ledge that runs along two of the four walls in the room

I always said I enjoy a challenge and this room does not lack for them.  Each of the above challenges presents me with a design opportunity – some of which I have figured out, while others I am still working on.  In any case, when I pulled together my three concepts for the client’s space, I knew I wanted to keep the colors muted, the design clean and distract visitors from the fact that the studio is in a garden-level apartment.  Oh yeah, one last thing…… it all has to be done in a budget around $1500 for materials since the client is on a strict budget.  So I rolled up my sleeves, put on my thinking cap, drank a lot of tea and came up with three designs that I hoped would but the client in a zen state…..

OPTION 1:  Natural Oasis

All the pieces in this design are serene, calm and natural…wood, glass, clay, iron with touches of modern design.  Contrast comes from the textures of the materials rather than color.  Reclaimed, recycled and new materials share space to create a room that is modern but personal.

OPTION 2: Retro Ethnic Eclectic

The design borrows from everywhere to create a sense that the room  has been designed over time with found objects.  Furniture from the 50s sits alongside modern lighting, dhurrie rugs, African baskets and nature-inspired photographs.  The walls are kept neutral but color is found in almost every accessory used in the room.


White dominates this design.  Slick and decidedly modern, the room is void contrast making visitors focus on singular focal points in the room from the wall art to the flooring.  Accessories are kept clear or white emphasizing their use rather than presence. 

The client eventually chose Option 2 as the winner which was the first design I completed.  I am finding that as I do more design boards for clients, they typically are choosing the design I do first as the ones they like best which makes me happy.  The first design are typically the ones that speak the most clearly to me.  I wonder if this will continue to be the case…..

As I ponder this, do you  have a favorite between the three designs?  Leave a comment or post on my Facebook wall with your feedback!