Hi!!! It’s been a crazy long time since I’ve written because things have been busy around here!!  Our show, Best House on the Block,  just finished airing and what a whirlwind that was!- we’re just coming up for air!  (If you didn’t get the chance to see it when it aired, it’s now available on the HGTV steaming app & On Demand and is currently airing on HGTV Canada!!)  {EDIT UPDATE: *** I’ve just switched blogging platforms and am running into some kinks with the spacing throughout the post & the commenting section- hoping to figure it all out soon & get it fixed- thanks for your patience!!}

The dining room from our “French Inspired Dreams” episode | photo by Helen Norman | Drawings on the wall by the super-talented Stephanie Kurth

 

 

I’d planned to do a weekly blog post as the episodes aired sharing the before-and-afters and behind-the-scenes details from each of the episodes but life just seriously got in the way.  (The first post also took me around 8 hours to write which I just didn’t expect due to how in-depth I ended up getting and because of back-end slowness on my blogging platform… I’ve since switched blogging platforms so my fingers are SO crossed that blogging will become a little easier!)   Anyway, we’ve been busier than ever before with not only our interior design business but with branching out into other home-related avenues of business which is something I’m insanely excited about…  BUT- I am still planning on sharing every last little detail of those episodes we worked like crazy for!!  We truly left it all out on the playing field with the Best House on the Block projects (along with our amazing contractor & good friend Mike Carr of CarrMichael Construction) and I’m really excited for you to see all of the details.  The show leaves so much out and I’ll be sharing all of my design reasoning, lots of product sourcing, and even spaces that weren’t revealed during the episodes.  So… I’m working the blog posts into my schedule!! (& making myself accountable by promising that to you here!! 😉

We’ve also been getting inquiries about what I was wearing in particular episodes of the show and on Instagram pics so I’m going to try linking my clothes through liketoknowit where possible.  I’ll also try to link to furnishings if possible (many are trade-only) and the way it works is that if you click on a product and end up purchasing it, I receive a small commission.  There’s no cost to you and the commission comes from the advertising budget of the company selling the product.  (I’m about ten years late to this party so I’m probably explaining what you already know but in case you don’t, Chris Loves Julia wrote a really informative post about the whole thing here.)  I’ve had to really put blogging on the back-burner for the past few years because we’ve been supporting our family with the design business, writing books and designing textiles.  Blogging time felt like time I couldn’t afford because it took up so much time (hopefully that will also get better with the new platform!) and the opportunity cost at work was huge.  I’ve fully embraced Instagram because I can share quickly and easily but do miss writing and sharing more than can be written in the small IG captions!!  So, I’m hoping that by monetizing my blog- even in a small way- I can justify the time spent writing and get back into it.  I know there are lots of mixed feelings about it out there but I’m going to give it a try.

Our old studio filled with so many of my favorite things

 

 

 

So what have we been up to?  For years, one of my goals has been to design product.  I love love love designing homes and have always wanted to take it a step further into designing the things that go into a home.  I started with my line of textiles a few years ago and I’ve been working on a collection of product lines that embody the laid-back, natural, relaxed vibe I love so much.  I’ll be posting separately & in detail about each of them but here’s a quick rundown of what we’ve got in the works: a tile line with Architectural Ceramics coming out this summer, a casegoods & dining furniture collection with Woodbridge Furniture being released at High Point Market in October, an upholstery collection with Taylor King also being released at Market in October, I’m working with a retailer on an art & furniture collections to compliment the others coming out this fall, and another retailer on a home collection including all areas of cooking and entertaining, bedding etc for release in 2020… and I’ve started a new hand-crafted knife company with my dad called Generations Cutlery.  (That’s a long story and I’ll be sure to explain it all soon!!)  We’re also venturing into real estate and I’ll be sharing all about that soon too!!  I’ve had my nose to the grindstone this past year so it’s feeling really good to be getting close to it all coming out and finally being able to share it all!!

On the homefront, things feel like they’re finally slowing down and we’re getting settled in our house.  (We’ve been here for two and a half years and have been steadily working on it but still have so much more to do.)  We’ve been trying to make as much time as possible with the kids and  are really just assess everything we’re doing and setting out to do. We’re thinking a lot about what we want daily life to be like and really trying to set our goals around that.  David is now at home with the girls almost every day and though this makes work a bit nuts, it’s working for us right now.  He’s doing a lot at night which is exhausting for him but the kids are really loving having him there all the time.  His new nickname from our 11 year-old is “room mom.”  There are, as usual, never enough hours in the day to get all of the work done but after filming the show, we really felt the pull to be home more with the kids.

Hanging with the kids at the lake house over spring break… #5 seen in the background causing mayhem per usual

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am really excited to share that I have an interview up on the amazingly talented, kind, and cool Amber Lewis’ blog- ALL SORTS OF – right now about how I got started designing, what life is like for us, and what we’ve got planned next.  Amber is a design hero of mine and her work is all just incredible.  She’s always real and is hysterical and everything she touches is amazing (clearly I’m a total fangirl) but I’m sure I’m telling you what you already know!! To check it out, click here.

And finally, one of the photos I got lots of messages about on Instagram was one of me with the girls the other week…  It was the prettiest day and everything had just stared blooming outside.

mom with daughters
Me & my girls in front of our screened porch. We added pea gravel and planted the massive American boxwoods last year.

I made a little collage (below) inspired by the photo with links to the products.  (And it was waaaaaay more fun than I expected…) If you click on the photos, it should take you to the products but this is my first attempt so please let me know if you have any issues!

I’m into comfortable and the linen dress has quickly become one of my favorites.  I think I need to own it in the solid white too!!  {Update: I just noticed that they’re sold out of many of the larger & plus sizes of the dress on the website so here’s another link which currently still has larger & plus sizes available: NEW DRESS LINK WITH OTHER SIZES }  I’ve had the espadrilles for a couple of years and have gone back & gotten them in black leather too and wear them multiple times a week when it’s warm out.

Anyway, thanks so much for catching up today. I’ll be back soon! In the meantime, enjoy your day!  For what feels like the first time in a lot of years we actually seem to be getting a Spring this year & it feels like heaven!!