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Showing posts from 2007

Inspirational Colors

For many people, choosing colors for their homes is a very scary process. Think about how many people’s homes that you’ve visited and the walls are still “Builder Beige” because they’ve been afraid to make a wrong decision. Do you live a beige lifestyle, or is your life full of color and excitement? Or would you like it to be? It’s been proven that color has a direct effect on our moods, so adding a little to your life might make a world of difference.

Here are some tips to start you in the right direction to find the perfect hue:

1. Ask Sherwin Williams or an expert at your local paint or home improvement store. Color is their life so they can help steer you in the right direction. I personally love Sherwin Williams because of their color palettes that they put together that give me fool-proof coordinates in a family of colors. Be sure to check out their new Concepts in Color - great fresh new colors with brochures that show the colors in an actual room.
2. Be inspired by your surroundi…
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One of my favorite builders of all that I’ve worked with in the United States is @Home Builders in Rochester, NY. It’s hard to believe that I’ve been working with builder David Riedman for over 10 years! Time flies, but when looking back at some of the model homes that I have merchandised for him in the past I realized that one of the reasons this builder continues to be so successful is because he understands timeless design and style, and builds homes that will never looked dated or “trendy”.

When designing your home whether it’s a model home or your personal home it’s important to really think through decisions you make that will become investments -kitchen cabinets and appliances, large furniture items, bath fixtures, and other materials that are expensive or difficult to change out. Bedding, accessories, wall colors and area rugs are places you can have some fun with current trends but change things out when your tastes or needs change.

De-Constructing Construction

The great news about deciding to build a new home these days is that you have options and choices like never before.

Current technology has made it possible to build “Factory Built” housing that not only meets the quality that site built housing offers, but in many cases can exceed the quality and value that is available.

For the next few weeks I’m going to go more in-depth about the different choices, and how they compare. The building types that I’m going to review are the following:

Trailers
Mobile Homes
Manufactured Homes
Park Models
Double Wides
Modular Homes
PreFab Homes
Panelized Kit Homes
SIPS Homes (Structural Insulated Panels)

Please let me know if you have interest in other building processes and I’ll be happy to do the research and share it here.

The Long Road Home

It’s hard to believe that Katrina roared thru all of our lives over two years ago. Living in Dallas, you may not have thought this would affect me as much as many living on the Gulf Coast, but when your parents have found their calling in doing disaster relief and you received a call from them in their Salvation Army canteen outside New Orleans and the Super Dome it gets personal. They were focused on feeding people in need and I was focused on the images that were floating across my television screen showing how life threatening the situation was. I couldn’t be more proud of my parents and the work that they do, and after spending a few days when I can volunteering with them, I don’t know where they find the energy and strength.

My parents have always been great role models, and if there is one thing I know about and have a passion for, it’s housing. My mother can cook for 2,000 as easily as she can cook for 2 - a gift I wish I inherited, but instead my passions tend towards making a …

Duff Goldman is the Ace of Cakes

Have I mentioned lately how much I love my Job? As a Lifestylist I spend a lot of time researching trends and ways that I can help consumers enhance their quality of life, so researching foodies and food trends is a large part of what I do. Last week I attended the Texas Restaurant Association's Southwest Foodservice Expo, and as luck would have it Duff Goldman, The Rock Star host of Ace Of Cakes was one of the speakers! People have asked me if I go everywhere with a photographer - as a matter of fact I do any chance I get attend events with Lisa Stewart of Lisa Stewart Photography so I can capture images to share with you all. Thanks to her I was not only able to get some wonderful shots of Duff, I was also able to go behind the scenes and see what he's like without an audience in front of him.It's wonderful to now know that Duff is not only fun to watch on his Food Network show Ace of Cakes, he also has an amazing amount of experience and credentials to back up the fact…

Street Smarts

It seems like one of the favorite stories publications are writing about right now (besides Paris Hilton going to jail) is the alleged housing slump. The power that the press has to determine housing prices is amazing.

The part that seems to be missing from all of the stories though is that simply put, housing should be based on supply and demand - shelter is a basic need and there is only so much all of us can or afford.

I've been working with one of my favorite builders in Tucson this week and their market has been hot particularly hard by the housing slow down. National builders came in to make a killing in a hot market and have left just as quickly.

A great home is a great home and for many people is a life long decision. Buyers need to remember that they aren't buying something they can walk away from in six months if they change their minds - a partnership needs to be developed between the builder and the buyer.

Canoa has done a tremendous job with this. They are a smaller …

Junior Lifestylists - The Next Generation

It’s amazing sometimes how kids “get it” more than most adults do. This weekend I spent time with my favorite Lifestylist® - Jenna. She understands how rooms should be designed around the interests and Lifestyle of the client and her room is the perfect example.

With Jenna, it’s all about pink and ponies. If it’s a pink pony, even better. She has taken a personal interest in designing her room and has done a remarkable job. Her Mom let her choose her own furniture, bedding and lighting and it’s ideal for what she needed. A bunkbed with bookcases houses her growing book collection and the top bunk has become the “stable” for her ponies. Wall shelves allow her to organize her other collections in a neat manner.

Kids rooms should be about kids. A place where they can dream, learn, grow, and above all, a room that’s all about them.
It’s amazing sometimes how kids “get it” more than most adults do. This weekend I spent time with my favorite Lifestylist® - Jenna. She understands how rooms should be designed around the interests and Lifestyle of the client and her room is the perfect example.

With Jenna, it’s all about pink and ponies. If it’s a pink pony, even better. She has taken a personal interest in designing her room and has done a remarkable job. Her Mom let her choose her own furniture, bedding and lighting and it’s ideal for what she needed. A bunkbed with bookcases houses her growing book collection and the top bunk has become the “stable” for her ponies. Wall shelves allow her to organize her other collections in a neat manner.

Kids rooms should be about kids. A place where they can dream, learn, grow, and above all, a room that’s all about them.

City Living

About five years ago I decided to move from the foothills of Tucson Arizona to Dallas, Texas. I loved my life in Tucson but most of my time is spent flying to help different clients so I needed a city that was in a central location and economical to fly in and out of. When searching for my new home I had hoped to be able to combine my living and workspaces, and to be able to house my growing collections of props, antiques, and tabletop items. A loft would have been ideal, but I yearned for a yard for the animals and a garden for me.I love being able to shop for homes (or just about anything) on the internet. You can look 24 hours a day and don't need a Realtor or sales person to tell you what you want or need.With The Home Idea Factory it was love at first sight. I get all of the benefits of city living - I can see the buildings of downtown Dallas from my roof -but I'm in one of the first neighborhoods that was built in Dallas so I have beautiful mature trees, wonderful archit…

Rachel Brown of Hells Kitchen

I found out this week that Rachel Brown who was one of the stars of Hells Kitchen - Season Two had died. Someone dying is always a reason to reflect, but Rachel was someone who was in and out of my life for over 20 years so it hit me very hard.

Besides what you saw on Hells Kitchen, who was this person?

I met Rachel shortly after she had just turned 21, and our first meeting was something I'll never forget. Here was this woman who had "it" - she was lanky - your eyes were just drawn to her when she came into a room - blonde, very humble, and a southern drawl that made you stop in your tracks and you wanted you to know who this woman was and where she came from.

Rachel was funny as heck. And it was a dry humor - she would say something and you would think... did she really say that? We used to spend weekends in a local park and Rachel would be there loving on the dogs and throwing the football. What is the most ironic thing to me is that the other memories I have of are whe…

Signature Style

I treated myself a few weeks ago to a potters wheel, and it has become my de-stressing tool of choice. If you"throw" a pot and try to push it, chances are good it will implode and it's all over. Today was a good day - I ended up with three items that almost look like something. Usually you sign your pieces to make them yours, and I decided that this was the year I wasn't going to be as embarrassed and came up with a way to make them uniquely mine. Z has always been my signature - if you are looking for an alphabet item chances are good z will be the hardest to find. Instead of signing my pieces underneath, I've chosen to stamp the inside of each item with a z. So now, if you see a slightly uneven bowl with a z in the bottom, you'll know who made it.Choosing what your Signature Style is should be about letting people know what you are about, and what your lifestyle is. It doesn't have to be complicated - it should just be about you.

Building Integrity

This has been an interesting week - lots of battles being fought and on the good side reconnecting with great role models.After getting an SOS from my sister that's building a stunning home in Oklahoma I headed up 35 to see how I could help. From the beginning it's been obvious that we are sisters - she and her husband didn't want a home that was like every one on the block. They wanted one that embraced old and new, had character just like their family definitely does, and was full of the love and craftsmanship our parents brought us up in. This wasn't a project they took on as a whim - finding the right lot and the right components has been a decade long search. They were also looking for partners in the process that could share their passion and to be honest they had no issues with compensating people for their time and involvement. As a person and as a professional there isn't one thing that I would have done any differently than they did.When interviewing bui…

Lifestylist Design - It's all about You

This month I've been very busy doing model homes across the country for Patriot, and also working on my new Lifestylist Design products that will be launching in January. It's been really exciting to see the Lifestylist program come full circle, and to see how people have embraced the concept and made it their own.My sister is the perfect example of what Lifestylist Design is all about. It should be about you - your life, your loves, your discoveries, not some designer or other persons interpretation of how they think you should live. I was finally able to get up here to see the new home that she and her family have been working on, and it's spectacular! And the best thing about it is that when I walk in the home, or even when I drive up to the home there is no question that this is an active outgoing family who loves life and are individuals. From the start my sister refused to get "typecast" into a specific style or theme. Instead she incorporated things that t…

Living Your Life with Style

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Welcome! I'm so excited to have this new forum to discuss Lifestylist Design and share some of the exciting projects we've been working on. Come back soon!