“Remind yourself. Nobody built like you, you design yourself…” A Dream by Jay-Z
In January, Interior Design magazine published its annual list of the top 100 interior design firms for 2010. The top 5 firms on the list are: 1) Gensler 2) Perkins + Will 3) HOK 4) Nelson and 5) Jacobs. My current company isn’t on the list. Even though we are an engineering and architecture firm, with an interior design division, our primary specialization is in engineering. Anywho, my goal is to work for a firm that is on the Top 100 list after I graduate from school. I am familiar with some of the names on the list but need to do a little research to expand my knowledge base on “who’s who in interior design”. (future blog coming). The list also mentions that the median fee for interior designers increased by 3. 7 percent. Cool. I’m focused and I’m mapping out my career goals now. I have a lot to look forward to in the future. Who knows, maybe my firm will be on this list one day. (DREAM BIG) At any rate, I can’t wait until I can officially say, I’m an interior designer.
Are you working for your dream firm? Is there a design firm you aim to work for in the future? Do you desire to start your own firm one day? Are you currently the owner of a firm and desire to be on the Top 100 list one day?
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“Futures made of virtual insanity – now/Always seem to, be govern’d by this love we have/For useless, twisting, our new technology/Oh, now there is no sound – for we all live underground” Virtual Insanity by Jamiroquai
Using art in interior design is a great way to establish a focal point, add color, and personalize a room. Artwork also serves as inspiration for a color palette or design theme. I’m an art fanatic. I love to attend art exhibits, gallery crawls and museums in search of beauty in the form of art by some of my favorite artists. Today’s post features the paintings of a very talented artist by the name of Derek Mayo. He is a self-taught painter whose work can be found in local venues in the Charlotte area. Enjoy.
I personally want to buy this piece for my own house. I love the bold, bright colors.
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I took a floral arrangement class at Pottery Barn where they the taught the art of creating beautiful displays in your home using florals and other natural elements. Here are a few tips on how to spice up a console table, countertop or mantel in your home.
1. Start with your staple pieces like a large vase that can used all year round. You can easily change the look of the vase each season by adding various decorative elements such as sand and candles during the summer months, flowers during the spring, or Christmas bulbs during the holiday season.
Tip 2. Do mix a variety of elements together surrounding the floral vase to create balance, texture, color and depth. Photographs are a great way to personalize your vignette. Also, it’s okay to use an even number of flowers in a vase. When using artificial flowers be sure to blend the branches to add character and adjust the height.
Tip 3: If you don’t use flowers then play around with different textures. Instead of using botanicals use objects to decorate the space.
Tip 4: Do use vases with different heights.
Tip 5: Change your look throughout the year. Find your core pieces that can be used throughout the year and change your accessories up each season. Take a glass vase and personalize it with your favorite items such as sea shells, grass, sand, matches, fruits, etc. The key is to add texture and a pop of color.
Tip 6: Add frames and photographs to personalize the space
Tip 7: Know your space. If you have cathedral ceilings then buy tall flowers to draw the eye up towards the ceiling.
Tip 8: Lanterns can be used all year round. And they can be used inside or outside the house.
Tip 9: If you don’t have a green thumb artificial flowers are a great alternative.
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“Heal the world /Make it a better place /For you and for me and the entire human race/ There are people dying
If you care enough for the living /Make a better place for /You and for me.” ~ Heal The World by Micheal Jackson
In honor of Earth Day today’s post is dedicated to sustainability. In October 2009, the Queen City welcomed its first luxury hotel in the Charlotte Uptown area. The Ritz-Carlton Charlotte is a LEED Gold certified hotel and is the first LEED hotel in North Carolina. The eco-friendly hotel follows LEED standards established by the Green Council and boasts 18 floors with 146 guest rooms, a bi-level penthouse spa, wellness center and the BLT steak restaurant. Highlights of the Ritz-Carlton’s sustainability features include:
- A green vegetated rooftop - great for outdoor parties and entertaining.
- Uses 30% less energy than conventional hotels
- Provides purified water through a Natura Water Filtration program
- Bicycle spaces for 150 guests, the hotel also provides bicycles for guests to use
- Leather products in the hotel were created with recycled leather
- Local and regional vendors were used for materials to reduce transportation and packing
- All dining and beverages come from local, organic and 100% natural products
- Environmentally-friendly cleaning products are used to clean the hotel
Also, couples interested in having a green wedding should sign-up for the hotel’s “Something Green” services. This is a new service created for the Ritz-Carlton in Charlotte to give couples an eco-friendly wedding experience. Insider tips: The restrooms have cloth napkins instead of paper towels. The lounge area stays open until 2 a.m. on the weekends and provides entertainment from a really good jazz band. The vodka, wines, and other cocktails are all organic and taste yummy. Go Green!
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“So can I get a window seat /don’t want nobody next to me /I just want a ticket outta town /a look around/and a safe touch down” ~ Window Seat by Erykah Badu
I have a bit of a problem. As an aspiring interior designer, I’m having difficulty deciding what area to specialize in. There are two types of interior design: residential and commercial. Under those categories the career possibilities are almost endless. My problem is I have too many interests. Residential, Commercial, Set Design, Visual Merchandising and Green Design all appeal to me in some way. I can see myself being successful in each of those areas. How does one decide what direction to take their career?
Residential design was the reason I decided to become an interior designer. I wanted to design homes and make the people living in those homes feel safe, secure, comfortable and loved. Plus, it’s easy to make a name for yourself and start your own business in residential interiors. But I feel like that’s already been, well, done. Most designers go into residential design. Therefore, the market is highly saturated and becoming very competitive when it comes to finding a job. In my opinion, commercial interior design is a little more challenging. You have a bigger budget, longer project schedule, and a different type of clientele and materials. In commercial design, you have the option of going into hospitality, office, retail, institution, education, or healthcare. I prefer hospitality or retail. There’s something about walking into a restaurant or hotel and being captivated by the aesthetics. I’m the person that sits at a restaurant and looks up at the ceiling and lighting fixtures while eating my meal. I may not remember how good the food tasted but I will remember the decor. OK, that’s a bit of a stretch but you get my point. I believe that good design always makes you come back. I would like to enhance someone’s experience at a spa or retail store with my design. My dream job would be in set design. Whenever I watch a movie or my favorite television show, I always notice the decor and layout of the set especially if the scenes take place in a house. Girlfriends was one of my favorite shows on television. I literally wanted to live in Joan’s house. The decor was warm and inviting. Watching the show made me feel like one of the girls, sitting on the couch, chatting it up. The set design drew me in. That’s powerful! Unfortunately, I live on the east coast and I do not wish to move to LA to become a set designer. However, as an alternative to moving, I would consider visual styling for a furniture magazine or catalog. I have subscriptions to Crate and Barrel, CB2, IKEA, Design Within Reach, and other catalogs because I enjoy looking at how they display their products on the cover. LOL, yeah I know. I’m a design junkie. *lowers head in shame* A Designer’s Intervention may be in order. Finally, there’s Green Design. I already live a natural lifestyle. I’m conscious of what I put into my body and on my body. Sustainability would be a natural fit for an undercover tree hugger such as myself. I would probably have to take a Green 101 class because there’s so much to learn in this field. And new information and products are coming out daily. To sum it up, I have too many interests and not enough lives. *sigh*. I need a mentor.
What is your speciality and why did you decide to go in that direction? Do you specialize in several areas? Did you work in one area of design and decide to try something new?
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Posted in DecoAccents, tagged Lighting on April 20, 2010 |
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“Oh yes I’m greater than all MC’s when I breeeze give me room please/I be like fascinatin when I be updatin/Cuttin off wack kids, pullin their trump cards/
I thump hard, and mak eem say that I’m God” Mass Appeal by Gang Starr R.I.P. Guru
DecoAccents is a new segment on ADSOM that features various decor accessories such as artwork, lighting, rugs, clocks, mirrors, and other knick knacks that “accent” a room. Today’s selection is Bell from Axo Light. The light is16½-inch diameter to a massive 71 inches. The light comes in red, golden yellow, electric blue, bordeaux, white, warm white, brick, brown, black, or green.
Photo courtesy of Interior Design Magazine
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“Deep waters, I’m drowning in/Deep waters, slowly drowning in deeper” ~ Deep Waters by Incognito
Happy Monday! I am pleased to introduce a new segment on ADSOM called Naturally Inspired. Creativity comes natural to me. I’m inspired by so many things…art, fashion, architecture, music, and people. Therefore, it’s easy for me to see beauty in just about anything. But the one place where I draw most of my inspiration from is NATURE. There is so much natural beauty in the world around us. The flowers blooming in the spring, the leaves turning in the fall, the colors in the ocean and animals.
I took a visit to the Georgia Aquarium and was in heaven. As a matter of fact, I drained my camera battery because I could not stop taking pictures. Sidenote, I heart photography. Taking pictures is one of my favorite hobbies. I was captivated by the vibrant colors found on the fish. Each fish evoked the perfect color pallet for a room. I can see myself showing up to a client meeting with a picture of a fish on my inspiration board. LOL. What inspires you?
The jellyfish below reminded me of this chandelier.
I threw this guy in because it’s soooo cute.
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“Summer summer summertime/time to sit back and unwind.” ~ Summertime by Will Smith and DJ Jazzy Jeff
Spring is in the air and summer is just around the corner. As temperatures start to rise, people will begin spending more and more time outdoors eating, entertaining, reading, and sipping lemonade under the shade. Therefore, outdoor living spaces should be a reflection of the style, comfort, function and aesthetics found in the inside of our homes. Outdoor living spaces have become increasingly popular over the last few years. During the summer season, stores are filled with a variety of outdoor furniture, bedding, lights, rugs and accessories to help homeowners bring interior design to their home’s exterior. Here are a few photos of what I consider to be cool outdoor cribs…follow me outside.
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“I was born long ago/I am the chosen I’m the one/I have come to save the day/And I won’t leave until I’m done/So that’s why you’ve got to try/You got to breath and have some fun/Though I’m not paid I play this game/And I won’t stop until I’m done/But what I really want to know is/Are you gonna go my way?/And I got to got to know” ~ Are You Gonna Walk My Way, Lenny Kravitz
Last night I was perusing the Internet when I came across some surprising information. Lenny Kravitz is an interior designer. *gasp* Really? Fine a** Rock Star Lenny. Lisa Bonet’s ex-husband and Zoe’s Daddy Lenny. Apparently, I am tardy for the party because he’s been in the design game since 2005. Why am I just finding out about this?
Interior design is Lenny’s hobby when he’s not on the road being a rock star. He designed several of his homes which caught the attention of his friends and several notable magazines such as Vogue, Interior Design, and Harpers Bazaar. His passion lead to the creation of Kravitz Design, a New York based firm that specializes in commercial design. In interviews, Lenny does not hide the fact that he’s not a formally trained interior designer. He draws up the plans and sends them to an architect for review and approval.
What fascinates me about this information is whenever my colleagues and I talk about high-profile, successful African-American interior designers, we are always hard-pressed to name more than 10. You commonly hear about Cecil Hayes, Shelia Bridges, and Kim Myles. But Lenny Kravitz’ name never comes up. Honestly, I am not sure how I feel about Lenny as a designer. In fact, I’m not a fan of too many crossover artists. Most are not able to do it successfully. To me Lenny Kravitz, the interior designer, is like Rihanna becoming an actress. (O__0) Ok, that’s harsh. But after seeing pictures of Lenny’s work I am ready to run his way. I’m impressed. His style is bold yet contemporary. Not the rock star image initially imagined. Lenny is not the first African-American celeb to crossover into interior design. Venus Williams is the CEO of V Starr, a residential and commercial firm based in Florida. But Venus is not heavily involved in the actual design work. She ”runs” the company and hired a licensed interior designer to do the real work. Hmmm. I want the world to know that I am officially accepting applications from celebrities who want to use their fame and money to open up a design firm and hire me as the lead designer. Nevermind. Here are a few pictures of Lenny’s design work.
”I’d love to design a hotel resort. It would be soulful elegance from top to bottom, not stiff glamour.” ~ Lenny Kravitz
Do you think Lenny has what it takes to become a successful interior designer? What other celebs are crossing over into interior design?
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“Now keep in mind I’m an artist and I’m sensitive about my ish…” ~ Tyrone by Erykah Badu
I took a trip to the Art Institute of Chicago and came across a few treasures. If you have never been to the museum, I highly recommend it. It’s a designers paradise and Art History 101 class under one roof. Anywhoo, I wanted to share a few pictures of “art” that inspired me.
Isn’t this chair sexy? I can picture it at a trendy hotel lobby or martini bar.
The King of Castle. This is an African handmade chair. Look at the basket weave detail. A-ma-zing!!
Function follows Design. I could point out something I love about each of these chairs.
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