Hey Friends! Sorry I was a little M.I.A last week! I worked a commercial in the evenings and set up for an event during the day, so extra time for blogging and sleeping was scarce! The good news is the event design turned out well and the commercial went off without a hitch!
The event was supposed to have a winter wonderland theme. After talking with the client, we decided snowballs, snowflakes, evergreens, golds, silvers, and whites were the ticket! Luckily, I had some great friends come and help me with setting up for the event! Thanks Emmy Lou and Emily Sue! Inside, we were up to our eye balls in snowballs, which was pretty fitting considering Oklahoma got hit with a huge snow storm last week!
Here are just a few I-phone pics I snapped. More/better shots coming soon!
It’s time for another post to remind you to keep dreaming and keep working! If you remember, Folgers is creating a platform to spread optimism, share positivity, and encourage a pay it forward attitude. Today I hope to add to the good vibes sweeping the online community with some encouraging words. In this post, I will mention some of my victories and some of my “failures.” I share everything with the hope that it can help those who read it and not with a desire to highlight my own accomplishments. Please read this with that in mind. You’ve heard me talk about basketball and Crossfit before. I love these sports not only because I am competitive person, but also because I feel like these sports teach me things that spill over into all parts of my life and make me a better person in general. Perseverance, teamwork, and goal setting are just a few. Recently I started competing in my first Crossfit Competitions and it’s been really fun to get back into the competitive ring. Possibly the best and worst thing about Crossfit is that there are so many movements (from body weight, to weight lifting, to gymnastics type movements) that you always have something to work on. I love that because it means there is always a challenge, but it also means there is always the possibility for failure and frustration. For the perfectionists out there, that can be intimidating.
I remember when I was growing up and a few years into my basketball career, I already knew that I wanted to play basketball in college. Because I set this goal for myself, I took every practice very seriously – from the line sprints to the dribbling drills to the hours of shooting. Back then, I wanted so badly to be perfect, to literally make every shot and to win every game, and when I didn’t – I was heartbroken. Negative thoughts filled my mind and tears flowed. Of course, once the thoughts and tears took over, (although I forced my body to keep going) I might as well have quit because my confidence was gone. Because I wanted to achieve my dream so badly, any small failure felt like I was getting further and further away from what I believed I was supposed to be and do with my life.
I was so blessed that my parents supported and nurtured my dream from a young age. Part of that support involved taking me to basketball lessons with Ron Brewer (an Arkansas basketball legend who played a number of years in the NBA) multiple times a week.
Ron Brewer-photo via
Of course in my eyes Ron was the end all be all, so when he sat me down to talk to me about this need for perfection and really, my fear of failure, I listened. I don’t remember the exact words Ron used, but I do remember his message. He said each shot I put up, each hour I put in was bringing me closer to my dream. He said I shouldn’t look at lost games and missed shots as failures, but rather let those moments propel me, to use them as motivation to keep putting in the work. Most people will slow down or stop and give up, so a little perseverance will put you ahead of the pack. The work is the key. No amount of desire or hope can be a substitute for the work. And as I continued to work, to put in the time at the gym, my confidence grew. Confidence can’t be created, it’s developed. It grows as you realize you deserve to succeed because you’ve put in the work that others haven’t. So, I’ll bring it back to present day now. In Crossfit, there are many movements that are difficult for me and although I’ve improved over the past 2 years, there are still things that I have trouble with – one of those being muscle ups.
muscle up diagram found here
And of course muscle-ups happened to be in one of the competitions that we signed up for. When our team realized that this movement would severely hamper our ability to finish well, we could have pulled out or even opted to do an easier movement (for more reps). But instead, we embraced the challenge and allowed it to propel us. In two weeks we were able to do the movement, not perfectly but able. I went into the competition knowing that I was capable, but still nervous because I hadn’t put in the work on that particular movement for long enough to really be confident. Long story short, I didn’t do as well as I wanted in stringing together multiple muscle-ups, but I successfully completed the movement several times. We didn’t win the workout, in fact we were the last team to finish in our heat. I wasn’t happy about it at the time, but in a few hours I was over the “embarrassment” of being last and embracing the fact that I had achieved a goal. And I knew that I would use that moment of seeming “failure” to make me work harder at the gym. And while others would call that workout a failure, I certainly don’t look at it that way – because I’m using the experience to propel me instead of paralyze me.
I’ve used a lot of sports stories today to get my point across, but if you aren’t into athletics I hope you can at least take the principles and apply them to your own life, to your own dreams. The main question posed today was “Will you let the fear of failure paralyze you or propel you?” I hope your answer is the latter friends. Great risks bring great rewards and the satisfaction of a goal reached is worth the work.
This post was brought to you by Blogher and Folgers Coffee. Folgers Coffee is dedicated to creating a platform where inspiring stories can encourage our online community. They are calling this platform, “The Best Part.”
The Best Part is an online community that’s dedicated to brightening your day—every day. How? By spreading optimism, one share at a time. The Best Part posts inspirational stories, encouraging quotes, good news and other upbeat items on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram—and encourages fans and followers to share that optimism with their friends. Because when optimism is shared, it grows, making an even more positive impact on our world. Check out what others are sharing on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.Comments
Hey Friends! So, forgive me- I am an artist of sorts and therefore I tend to change my mind a lot. That’s a valid excuse, right? Being an “artist?”
Anyway, I was going to post more info and the source list for the room for that we did for Hy (that was featured on The Pioneer Woman’s blog yesterday), but I need to get a couple of more things together before I’m ready to do that.
So, today I figured it was high time I shared some Christmas decor ideas. I mean, it’s right around the corner! So, if you’re going to decorate for X-Mas- now’s the time! Last year, we did a number of speaking engagements in which we shared all sorts of fun Holiday decorating ideas. You can find all those ideas and more in the DIY section of the blog, but I thought I would make it easy and put them on the front page today! So, check them out and spread the Christmas cheer with some festive decor!
PS- Many of these ideas are easy to do and can be accomplished in a few hours. Also, I’ve tried to curate a nice mix of modern and traditional style ideas so everyone can find something that’s to their taste! ENJOY!
Have a lovely day and happy decorating!!!
Oh, hey friends! I have been keeping a certain makeover under wraps, but today I am super excited to share about the guest room redo I did for The Pioneer Woman’s best friend- House of Hyacinth!
If your coming over from The Pioneer Woman blog, I am going to give you a little behind the scenes look into the design process and how we got to the finished product. If your a regular reader, check out the back story and then head over to Ree’s blog to see the finished photos!
If you’re new to the blog, here’s what you should know about my design philosophy. The only style “rule” I stay true to is to keep each design unique, artistic, and authentically personal. The most important thing to me at the end of the day is that the design speaks to the story of the person I created it for. I want my design to honor my client’s background and inspire their future.
First off- Oh my goodness, can you believe how great of a writer Hy is?! After the first installment in this series, I seriously couldn’t wait to read the rest of her additions. Of course I already knew how the story ends, but even so, the way Hy composes her thoughts is just riveting!
The room was really a blank space when we got there. Hy had painted the walls white and cleared everything out besides the beds and whatever was behind the closet doors.
Back in the day, custom projects like this used to take craftsmen months to create and as a result were not practical or available to the masses. As digital fabrication continues to develop, this type of work will become more affordable and even possible for homeowner’s to take on themselves. It is Kara and I’s hope to showoff the capabilities of these awesome machines to design enthusiasts and aid in this “Maker Movement” revolution!
We loved the wall, but wanted to add even more layers to the decor and the story, so we made a custom plaque with the year the house was built. Since it was much smaller and more detailed I used a laser cutter to cut out the wood sign.
Ok, I (Kara) am cutting back in now!
Of course the personalization of a space is only possible if you can come up with ideas to communicate the story you’re telling. There are always a million ways to do this but Tim and I prefer to use a combination of mostly abstract references and a few more obvious connections.
The straightforward connection we used in Hy’s room were the door headboards. These headboards were not just old, cool looking pieces that the family picked up at a flea market. These pieces were part of the family’s history! They came out of the family’s law practice. There was a genuine history there and that’s why we had to use them. Some lawyer bookcases were also an addition to the room that made sense from a meaningful and functional point of view!
Knowing that the oldest boy would be crashing in this room when he comes home from college, we thought a large steer head would be a fun element that would remind him of his time spent as a cowboy on Ree’s ranch. We got our’s from Z Gallery, where they have an extensive collection of white ceramic animal heads.
Since this room would be used by both men and women, we wanted to make sure the decor had elements to please both sexes. That’s why we went with a mix of masculine wood textures & feminine floral patterns, antique brass & golds mixed with pops of coral and so on.
We didn’t want this to simply be a space people could lay their heads…we hoped to create a space that would inspire. A space that people felt excited to come and stay in. Head on over to The Pioneer Woman blog and see how things turned out! And come back here tomorrow for more details on the room, including a source list!
Thanks for stopping by to all the PW readers, and please feel free to check out the rest of the blog while your here! You can find the Before and After Archives Here, the DIY Projects here, and my Portfolio here! Have a lovely day!!Comments
Hey Friends! I am making an unusual Saturday post because I was excited to share this parlor bathroom that I recently completed.
You’ve seen the beginnings of this bathroom before when I posted about covering the walls in a concrete product called ARDEX. But just to refresh your memory, here is what the bathroom looked like before we started any work.
The feel was very traditional…and a little bit boring.
A parlor bath is a great place to do something bold. It’s a room that owners rarely visit, but guests often get a good look at. For that reason you can make design decisions that have a great impact. A bold color and pattern could get overwhelming or old in a space that you spend hours in every day, but they are perfect choices for a room that gets less play. I explained this concept to my clients, but went ahead and provided them two design plans- one that was very classy, but more subdued and one that was elegant, but bold! To my delight, the couple chose the latter! Let’s take a look at the results!
There is a lot to talk about in this small space! The first thing you may notice is the hexagon wall! This graphic pattern feels contemporary but also timeless, especially when done in a black and white color palette. I took this pattern from floor to ceiling for maximum impact and to break up the colored concrete wall treatment.
Are you falling in love with that pattern as much as I did? Instead of using tile to create the look, I used a stencil. If you’re looking to create your own patterned feature wall, Royal Design Studio has a ton of great stencil options to choose from! They even can create custom stencils, which is what I did for this project!
The floating countertop helps this small space to feel more spacious and the simplicity of it balances out all the interesting finishes happening in the rest of the space. The rich wood combined with golden accents throughout bring warmth into the space, striking a nice balance between modern and timeless. The champagne gold, wall mounted faucet makes my knees weak.
Even in a space this small, the right styling can make all the difference. The woven baskets, turkish tea towels, mercury glass vase, colorful flowers, ect. bring a cultured feel into the space.
The polyhedronal light fixture mimics the faceted pattern behind the sink. It is painted a rich brass color- thanks to Modern Masters! It pops off the bold blue/green background beautifully.
Here’s a pic of the light fixture I posted on Instagram. I love the shadow it casts in the space as well!
The wall treatment was a process, but I love how it turned out. For me, it made the space feel like you could find it in a century old castle. It appears to have weathered naturally over time- a perfect patina to add some real charm to this bold space. I’ll explain how to get this look in a future post.
So, there’s the timeless, yet bold parlor bathroom- ready to inspire the homeowners and enchant guests! Can’t wait to start working on the next room in this home!
PS- You can get great metallic paints (like the brass I used in this room) from Modern Masters. You can order here or visit your local SPECTRUM Paint to see the options in person. Royal Design Studios has become my go-to for great stencils to create attention grabbing feature walls. Check out all their amazing products right here!Comments