jan-begins

New beginnings come to us in many forms and once in a while, through least expected circumstances.  Most of us actively seek them out with the fresh start of a new year; however, others burst upon us, stopping us suddenly in our tracks, forcing our mental and emotional "clocks" to stop long enough to ponder its significance. Whether forced or invited, such reflections are all good.

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I am reminded of the question posed all too often in our youth but forgotten in our later years. “So, what do you want to be when you grow up?” Don’t think it is ever too late to ask yourself this again and again. And don’t think you can’t be multiple things at once. Growing old to me means sitting in one dimensional grey tones rather than opening yourself up to the invigorating colors of change.

 

Professionally, I meet most of my new clients this time of year as women typically want their homes to reflect whatever inner stirrings are taking place even if subconsciously. Now and then, it takes the re-weaving or re-ordering of the place you call home to actually acknowledge and become one with the emerging, new you. Occasionally, it takes creating a new vernacular within the home to step into a new role. And periodically, we just rip out what isn’t working and rebuild from a dream. I always feel so honored being witness to these changes. It is a great gift.

 

“I live my life in ever widening circles”

                                                                                                                Rilke

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december

Now that the snow has blanketed our gardens and we have lost our canopy of color over the drive, it is time for an infusion of all that is jade, olive, emerald and lime . And regardless of what holiday you celebrate in these winter months, nothing is better on these dusty grey days than the color, texture and smell of fresh greens in and around the house.  Go visit your local nursery and explore the delicacy of …

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Red Seeded Eucalyptus

Green Eucalyptus

Incense Cedar

Juniper

Red Huck

Blue Cone Cedar

The subtle pinks and plum of the Red Seeded Eucalyptus make it my personal favorite this year and its perfume keeps me smiling. Try some. Let this verdant (verdeant in Old French) collection keep your senses singing right into Spring.

 

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end-nov

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With the crisp chill and whirl of leaves comes the fresh scent of  cedar garlands, an amased flicker of candles,  vases overflowing with the radiant color of floral and fruit bouquets, the sugared aromas from the kitchen, sparkling table settings, jubilant music and a blushed glow in the hearth.  And while some wonder why these things should matter, I feel the investment holds more value than anything found in a shopping mall or purchased hurriedly with the promise of free shipping.  For in this time of recession, more than any in my lifetime, we need a return to an unplugged, home-based tradition – gatherings around table and hearth.

Nothing encourages GATHERINGS more than the sedate winter months of Wisconsin. And our holiday nestings give enough pause for a slower exchange of  stories.  Sadly, it often takes the effort we put into our holiday preparation to embolden this yearly sigh of thanks for our own story and prompt a real look at the beautiful faces that infuse our busy lives with spirit.

Countless thanks to all of my captivating clients.

You make my job a source of joyful delight.

Thank you from the depths of my heart.

 

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late-october

october-imagePart of designing the perfect life for oneself is paying close attention to dreams. If you can dream it, you can materialize it. It requires focus, patience and energy - all of which I bring to the equation. But most importantly, it requires you to slow down enough to identify what elements in your life bring you the most joy.

Let your home be an extension of whatever "that" is. Let each room cloak you in the warmth of your own joyful expressions. The best designed homes are not for show. They do not mimic - they sing a very personal melody. My favorite designs revolve around the senses, the sounds, textures, colors and memories that make my clients smile.


a European kitchen designed around a client's 10 foot French harvest table because the more people she can gather around her table in the middle of her kitchen, the better

a living room filled with oriental porcelains, paintings and fabrics that remind the owner of her childhood overseas

a house filled with library niches because the client treasures not only the time with her books but the sight of them

a kitchen painted in the warm colors of Southern France for a client who dreams of going there

a house filled with all the shades of an Irish blue seascape to remind a client of her roots

or, my house, which is an extension of my beloved outdoor gardens


Sit and ponder, wander and observe and then make a list of all that you dream about. The most nourishing designs reflect your enthusiasm for living. So live it.
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early-september

octoberI am a wandering poet and muse. I use color, sculpture and light to woo the heart and eye. I weave a blanket of joyful sacredness into gardens, homes and rooms. We all want to be more than just frenzied, trendy consumers and competitors. We want to give expression to our SPIRIT as well.

Expression of our individual spirits brings this thought to my 1956 aluminium trailer with cramped quarters, sandy sheets, spiders and a bucket for a dishwasher. Perfect design can also be found in awkward places like this because it requires you to find the simplistic perfection in the LIVING that takes place within it. It retrains the eye into seeing that no interior space is perfect until it plays host to the uncomposed messiness of children, food, laughter, pets... not always in that order.

This first blog is written while on the road in our vintage trailer with our youngest two children. We have christened this antique "Little Cowboy" and while I admit to hanging gold, gilded cowboy paintings on the rich wood paneling and to recovering the cushions in Ralph Lauren's decadent brown and blue velvet- and yes I confess the entry is gifted with riotous potted geraniums- the tiny, unplugged quarters grace us all with fresh eyes for the perfection in EVERYTHING including the sandy, the sticky and the gooey. So take a break from your staged living room and go submerge your feet in some wet sand, listen to the symphony of birds in the early morning, watch small children explode with laughter running in and out of the lake, drip ice cream down your shirt and read until your eyes can no longer see the print on the page. This moment, this pause, this stepping off into a different place, is better than good... it is poetic perfection.

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