A Chill Beauty Station

With the proliferation of and desire for organic and all natural beauty products, the question of how to best keep everything fresh has brought about an obvious solution that we have somehow overlooked  Koran women have known this and have been refrigerating their cosmetics for eons.  Americans are a little slow to the party ~ until now.

Chilling your cosmetics, beauty products, and let me go a step further and include medication, keeps them fresh thereby creates a longer shelf life and  maintains maximum potency.  All natural beauty products lack preservatives so spoilage occurs more quickly.  Cosmetics that are held at room temperature can also benefit, it keeps oxidation at bay.  We are told moisturizers only last so long when exposed to air, after the suggested shelf life expires, we are told to throw things away.  If we can hold on to our beauty products a little longer it becomes a money saver.  I'll do anything to keep my La Mer fresh!

The 15 inch  spa and beauty True refrigerator  can be customized with an array of different panels and colored LED lights.  Products can be cooled to as low as 33 degrees.  A cool towel and some water is a nice bonus for freshening up.

Plain and simple ~ it's brilliant!  Oh how I long for this in my spa like master suite with a coffee and wine bar.  I'm going to visualize it and see what happens.

Design According to your your Sign ~ Hmmm

This is a repost from several months ago.  For some reason this story is recirculating. The media has been talking about this as if its new news.  I think it is safe to say there will be no reshuffling of the zodiac signs we have become accustomed to because of  the discovery of  ophiuchus or the 13th sign in the zodiac..

Your whole life you think you are a Leo.  If you believe in designing according to where the sun's position was along the zodiac path the day you were born, you gravitate towards these colors:

You love gold and sheen ( I never met a paillette I didn't like).  You live in grand style, value excellence, quality, and LOVE drama in design.  Leos have a creative flair that is reflected in their homes and the way they entertain; therefore making them good hostesses.  They love hides and animal prints for their exoticism.  Warmth is most definitely conveyed!  Hello, have you met me?

Then all the sudden astronomers tell us that the Earth's alignment has shifted because of the moon's gravitational pull after centuries and has altered the signs.  WHAT??  It can't be, I'm not a Cancer; because if you're a Cancer, these are your colors:

Nostalgia defines this sign's personality.  Cancers are homebodies (which I most certainly am not).  They like the protection of home, it is their retreat.  I think that applies to everyone, though.  They like soft muted colors, functionality, a casual, comfy environment.  OK, I get all that but- Cancers like large entertaining spaces, they are conservative in style, and very attached to sentimental belongings and gifts from others.  Cancers use curves in their decor, and they are control freaks and perfectionists (not my words but I have been accused of both).   Part of my identity is rooted in the belief that I am a Leo, so I am just staying a Leo!  And what's with the new sign they added?

How do you know how to design for Ophiuchus, the serpent barer?  Too hell with that!

To learn how to design for your sign see Architectural Digest
credits: diduknow.org, windsorcottage.com

You do You

Yesterday I attended What's New, What's Next at the New York Design Center.  I heard a lot of inspirational speakers and saw a lot of beautiful product.  What stuck with me the most was a talk my friends Corey Damon Jenkins and Robin Baron gave.  They spoke honestly and from the heart about climbing the entrepreneurial ladder, trials and tribulations, branding and authenticity.  This seemed to strike a cord with the standing room only audience.  The Q and A could have gone on far longer than it did and everyone seemed truly engaged in this topic of authenticity, which really struck me in the  "smoke and mirrors" world we live in.

In that vein, as a nod to the conversation and because I am now straddling two passions; that of coaching and design, "taking a life coach approach to interior design" or "designing a new story," I am here to say honestly and authentically, "I am frazzled, fried, uninspired and overwhelmed!"  I sat down to write a blog post and...  Crickets.  Nothing.  Nada.  Zilch.  My mind is elsewhere.  I am preoccupied.

And guess what?  THAT'S OK!

The message of the importance of authenticity is a tale as old as time, but it is resonating more than ever.  In business, relationships, time management, the violence we are bombarded with, life feels hard sometimes.  Rather than being open, we sometimes hide a part of ourselves away or push through the pain of it all.  We are hard on ourselves, we create more stress.  We've been told,"fake it till you make it."  I'm not gonna lie, there is a place for that, but not in lieu of losing our essential self.  The stuff that makes us uniquely us.

Sometimes just feeling your feelings, acknowledging it's a bad day, a bad mood, a full moon, exhaustion, whatever, doesn't make it go away, but it makes it acceptable, tolerable.  You feel lighter just by recognizing it.  Be patient with yourself, accept the "what is" in the moment.  Everything will fall into place.  It always does!

I decided to make this blog post about my not feeling like writing a teaching moment.  I am so excited to delve into this and so much more along with the design posts you are accustomed to.  Hopefully I can wrap it all in a beautiful bow, because even yucky feelings are a gift sometimes.

fashion ph: Mira Mikata, painting:Mel Bochner

We've been Ghosted

I saw the new Gucci collection for Spring 2017, but really did not pay much attention to the "street art" style it took on.  I just assumed Alessandro Michele, the genius creative director of Gucci, who is resurrecting the brand for a new customer, was just busy trying to turn heads (see the story I previously wrote about Gucci here), until I read an article about the inspiration behind the collection.

Trevor "Trouble" Andrew, an artist, ex skater and professional snowboarder was in need of a Halloween costume one year.  Not thinking much of it, Trevor cut eye holes in a Gucci sheet and people began referring to him as Gucci Ghost.  This prompted him to paint the company's logo on just about everything he came in contact with and post it to his Instagram account, #guccighost.  Most companies would have called their legal team to intervene or press charges, but not Gucci.  Instead of getting upset when Alessandro was informed of what was taking place, he summoned Trevor to Milan and told him to "go crazy."  A collaboration as well as a collection was born!

“It’s completely different than the idea of copying. It’s the idea that you try to [take to] the street, through language like graffiti, the symbols of the company.”


Life is Gucci became "a thing," a reference to life is good.  A reference to consumerism.  People responded.  In Trevor's case the cost of his first Gucci watch he had coveted and eventually bought with his winnings from snowboarding made him feel like the money was well spent.  The value outweighed the cost.  I guess that's what makes all of us spend a lot of money on something.  It intrinsically makes us feel a certain way.  High fashion or street fashion, there is a certain cross over appeal of logos.  Creativity is creativity and is relevant on every level--high, low, vintage, new, repurposed and thus street style becomes status and vice versa.

The power of social media, a mutual friend, and the lack of intimidation and self confidence allowed for this extraordinary thing to happen.  “Alessandro completely works off of love and no fear,” Andrew said.  That's a beautiful thing. 


Could a textile line be far behind?  Life is Gucci for Trevor Andrew!


High Point Market Design Blogger Tour Fall 2016

I feel so privileged to have been chosen to be part of the High Point Market Design Blogger Tour. Every Spring and Fall the holy grail of trade shows in the interior design industry opens its doors for the trade to view what's new, what's next in the design industry.  High Point Market informs what we will see in the coming months in interiors, much like fashion week informs us via the runway.
Esteem Media has assembled a stellar group of bloggers/designers who will give you an in depth, on line tour of the goings on, trends, wares, events, and parties to keep you "in the know" as well as update you about sponsor news that's noteworthy!  Stay tuned to any of my social media channels as well as #designbloggerstour or any of my colleagues' blogs to keep up with all the action.

Courtney Allison @ French Country Cottage
Catherine Austin @ Bespoke Banter
Arianne Bellizaire @ Inspired to Style
Vicki G. Bolick @ The Ace of Space Blog
Jeanne Chung @ Cozy Stylish Chic
Janet Coon @ Shabbyfufu
Mariella Cruzado @ Splendorsyling
Holly Hollingsworth Phillips @ The English Room
Shannon Smith @ Burlap and Lace


Several of these companies I am very familiar with and order from quite often.  Others less so, but I am excited to learn more and educate myself, then you, on how they can help us beautify and/or simplify our lives.  That's what good design does!  The tour is October 23rd and 24th.  I'll be staying a few extra days for personal projects.  All I need now are great walking shoes.  It's a long couple of days!


Water ~ Falling


Wanderlust is setting in again.  I so wish I could see the phenomenal waterfall in the Grand Canal at Versailles installed through the end of October.

Berlin based, Dutch artist Olafur Eliasson created this incredible water installation in the 17th century chateau's gardens.  His intention was to make the impossible possible, to finalize the vision of Andre Le Notre, the original designer of the famous gardens of King Louis XIV.  Andre always planned on a waterfall for the canal, but it was not to be in his lifetime.  Keeping the engineering of the fall open invites the viewer to have an interactive experience with it.


“The Versailles that I have been dreaming up is a place that empowers everyone. It invites visitors to take control of the authorship of their experience instead of simply consuming and being dazzled by the grandeur. It asks them to exercise their senses, to embrace the unexpected, to drift through the gardens, and to feel the landscape take shape through their movement.”
– Olafur Eliasson
ph:Vincent Laganier

Olafur's work is thought of as a cross between art and architecture.  He recently won a Crystal Award for bettering the state of our world.  He studies and expresses his concern for the world around him.  Global warming, electricity, and clean water are some of the subjects explored.

He also created other site specific works placed throughout the palace questioning spatial relationships.  They are integrated into the architecture of the chateau in very subtle ways using light, space, metal, and mirrors.

One of them is The Gaze of Versailles ~ "The royal court at Versailles was a place of constant observation – of oneself and others; the strict social norms of the time were enforced through a web of gazes” says Eliasson.

* ph: Anders Sune Berg

The intention of the exhibit's totality is to examine impermanence and transformation.  It is interesting to see it thru Olafur's eyes.