Tag Archives: DIY

“I’m one to look back in order to move forward”- Thomas O’Brien


photograph by: Lauren Gries

Last week I wanted to write a witty post about how as we celebrated our independence, we should also be remember how much of England we owe our lives to American in interior design, music, fashion etc. Well I didn’t get around to it soon enough to do the post so I just decided to forget about it. However, tonight as I was reading through the new Thomas O’Brien book American Modern, his introduction basically explains my thoughts perfectly.

“Although I’m often referred to as a modern designer, my job is, I think, more about editing what has come before and making it into something new. I’ve always felt you can’t move ahead unless you know where you’re coming from, in order to really decide what you want to take with you and what to leave behind. In American design, that entails a particular debt to English and Continental influence, filtered through colonial assimilation, rural enormity, and the intensity of the city. Remixing those ingredients – making that mix your own – what I like to practice. I do believe there is something in that process which is quite American in spirit, ultimately modern in implementation.”

O’Brien goes further to say

“Practicality, industry, boldness, scale. Simplicity and sincerity. Innovation. These are the ingredients of American modern style.”

Betsy Burnham’s dresser seen on Decor Demon

Maybe it doesn’t fully explain what my post would have been about, but it describes the ideas I would have liked to evoke. I have grown up in America and fully appreciate what this country has to offer and has given me in my life. However, I feel that there are too many people in America who forget about where and how this country came about. If it weren’t for England, we wouldn’t have America. There would definitely be a country here now, but it just wouldn’t be the same. In any case, whether it be an understanding of our country or just anything that we enjoy in life, I think it really important to have an understanding of where and why that came from. I would see it so much in college where people would want to make something that referenced a certain style of design, or just ‘liked’ something, but never actually took time to research what that style was and why it even existed. I have to say, that would drive me crazy!

Design can be many things to many people, but to me, it has always been about tradition in modern life. I am guided by traditions, both inherited and studied, which I will bend to the moment I’m living in. I’m one to look back in order to move forward.” – Thomas O’Brien

On a lighter note, I’m really impressed by O’Brien’s new book. Although I’m only a few pages into the text (there is more than the usual design books), I have flipped through the photos and have already chosen a few favorites. Above are images pulled from aero studios and Laura Resen, the photographer.

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über busy

It pains me that I have started a bunch of projects but have left them unfinished, but only because my life outside of my dream filled head of creativity is taking control. Please see below example.

Entryway before:

Entryway in progress:

Entryway after: Just kidding! Not true.

I decided one Sunday two weeks ago that I would paint my entryway.  I chose this lattice pattern because I fell in love with it for two reasons, 1. it’s cute and 2. it’s easy to duplicate.  So I decide to make stencil out of a pizza box and voila! started painting.  Of course Sundays end and Mondays begin and I had to put the rest of my work off until I had the time. That was two weeks ago. Sigh. It WILL HAPPEN! I just have to get through these next few weeks.

I also started another project last weekend. That was sewing my summer curtains. Let’s just say I’m 3/4 of the way finished.  I guess I’ll need to get through the next few weeks for me to finish those as well.  I think starting new exciting projects is a way to express my ADD and a form of procrastination.  I have so many things that must be done, but for some reason my mind can’t focus until I have at least started more things.

I graduate in less than 2 weeks and leave for Paris 3 days before that.  Instead of walking at graduation I will literally be walking around Paris!  So exciting, but so scary because of the multitudes of work I have to do. With that said, I must take a break from my inspirational blog to focus my time on “more important things” like theses and presentations and self-marketing plans, but I will touch base soon.

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Filed under Apartment, Home, New York

DIY

Love this post from Design Sponge, Sewing 101: Curtains. It is a step by step tutorial on how to make a simple set of curtains.

I’ve always made things myself because first of all I love to make and create things, second of all its cheap! My problem though is that I’m really terrible at following a pattern or planning out the piece I’m going to make. I more or less like to wing it. But in the long run it works out!

For example: my kitchen curtains.

Before:

After:

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Design Crisis

How come whenever I have a question about what to do in my apartment I can’t find any answers?  I have to super search for what I’m looking for. This time its what to do when you have a really long, narrow room. How do you incorporate your bed? below is my apartment’s floor plan. The layout is how it was when I moved in, which for a while worked.

Last night however, I decided I hated my bedroom and needed a change.  I moved my bed against the back wall, with the window.  I’m fighting the feng shui in every way possible, but really there’s nothing else I can do. I’ve tried them all.  I checked out a few images on Apartment therapy that showed a bed in front of a window and some I liked, others I did not. I was thinking about making the curtain go all the way across, but the one image that really bugged me was the one that had those curtains.

Yes:

No:

The empty room before my bf built the wall.

This moving my bed around has also made me think about how I do live in New York and a lot of time when you live in a small space you have to just give up what you ideally would want  your place to look like and actually do what looks best for your space.

Apartment Therapy: Bed In front of window

Apartment Therapy: Bed in front of window take 2

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