Inspiration: Best Western

I love me a vaguely “cowboys & indians” themed anything, mostly because I’m such a big fan of wide-brim hats, denim and Madonna’s Music album.

Images via W Magazine,, A Continuous Lean,, Charlotte Minty, Oracle Fox, Garance Doré, Opening CeremonyTommy Ton and Fashion Toast…possibly others, oh no! I’ve forgotten.


Debbie’s House Part 2

And now for part deux of Debbie’s home! Below is a picture of the backyard…the yellow building is the cottage her brother John lives in, the interior of which is featured here. That path from the cottage towards the house was actually Debbie’s wedding walk, and she and her husband were married under the large tree to the right. John is the man responsible for the brightly colored buildings on the grounds…quite the artiste!

The blue glass bowl below is a favorite piece of John’s, which he unfortunately shot with a BB. But it didn’t completely fall apart, so hooray for silver linings!

The yellow building below is a former chicken coop, given a second life as apartments and a third life as a house. The downstairs still needs to be renovated – I took a few shots of the interior, but not enough for a Debbie’s House Part 3 – yet!
 An abandoned car down by the river behind the house.

Piqued of the Week: One Man’s Mess

This week I’m posting my sporadic “Piqued” feature on Monday to provide some food for thought before I upload photos of the week’s featured space. I’ve lately been wondering to what extent the “design” of an interior is really a conscious process. I don’t take for granted that decoration is an art form and that an interior provides a unique and uniquely rewarding canvas on which to work, but our homes are shaped, to some extent, by the random events of life and how we let those events manifest themselves in some detail of our homes is an interesting thing to see. And seeing – it’s a more complicated act than biology would have you believe. When my bench makeover was featured on Design*Sponge one commenter noted that she liked the bench, but was too distracted by my unmade bed in the background to appreciate it. I wasn’t offended so much as surprised – in my eyes, those sheets look whipped and fluffy, like chocolate mousse. I love the texture and shadow they add to the picture. This issue of disorder conflicting with the appreciation of a particular “mise en scène” came up once more when a friend of mine noted of the dining room table in Joey and Jeff’s home that he would like it if only there wasn’t a “mess” on the table. But the chairs, the table – so beautiful! How could you get hung up on some silly papers?

With the controversy unleashed by the recent release of the un-design book Undecorate, one has to wonder – what exactly do we see when looking at someone’s home? The picture above is of my friend Debbie’s son’s room. He’s left for college and the room is a bit unkempt, as one would expect – a makeshift shelter for his former home life. I love the way the comforter looks, though, and the pops of orange and blue hidden underneath. When shooting Debbie’s home I had in mind the photos of French photographer Dominique Nabakov, whose candid interiors shots make one relish the lack of obtrusive staging. As I upload the photos of Debbie’s home this week, ask yourself what you see…don’t take it for granted because it’s undecorated!

Sneak Preview: River Bluff

Joey was nice enough to take me by Latitude 38‘s latest project, a new home being built in the River Bluff community. It’s a beautiful home that makes interesting use of its space (there’s a second-story breezeway connecting the master suite to the main house) and rather elegant use of a lot of natural wood. Jeff, says Joey, is definitely inspired by Scandinavian design elements and that was very apparent here. River Bluff is a small enclave of modern homes adjacent to the Woolen Mills area of town, directly behind a public housing development.

The lighting fixtures below look as if they’re still waiting to be unwrapped, but that’s the style!
The bench was hand-carved by one of the company’s talented employees.

This Is Charlottesville: And Baby Makes Three

Joey Conover and Jeff Erkelens of local design and build firm Latitude 38 were nice enough to let me into their home to snap a few pics. To sum up the experience, I. LOVE. THEIR. HOME. To put it more eloquently…the three story structure is located downtown off of West Main Street. It felt fitting to shoot as Spring begins since the interior features bright colors, bold patterns, and beautiful light. The home includes such unique features as a green roof and an indoor climbing wall, of all things, which Jeff says he used to climb to get to his third floor master suite – until Joey asked him to stop! The couple recently welcomed baby Eleanor into their lives and are moving in the fall into another custom-built home that’s a little more family-friendly (fewer steps will be involved…) Check back later in the week for a sneak preview of Latitude 38’s latest project!

A Room of One’s Own

Apparently some of ya’ll are getting particularly antsy about seeing the rest of my digs, so I’m throwing you another bone: my “bedroom”!

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This Haus is Not a Home. It’s a Bookstore.

This is a bookshop called Domus Haus. I spent a few hours there yesterday, poring over design books (my fave is Turning Pages: editorial design for print media. w00t fanboy luv.) I also found my new favorite magazine at Domus, Apartamento, a worthy successor to my dearly departed Domino. The interior editorials are down-to-earth, and the photos are more inviting/flavorful than the stand-offish pages of, say, Elle Decor (barf). Apartamento = Domino – girlishness + The Selby x hipsteryness. It looks and feels like something Gert Jonkers and Jop Van Bennekom would endorse. In the stacks I also found Self-Service (plus back issues) and Purple, although I can’t afford either right now {do I want to?}(someone can – Purple’s Lindsay Lohan covered-issue was there when I first stopped in, and this time it was gone! I wonder if she’s a selling point in Switzerland?)

Tomorrow morning at 8am I head off to Geneva. Then Saturday I’m in Lausanne and some other French speaking towns. Fun! but also DIE. 8am = too early – morning person x agony. No posts for at least three days! Ahh! And I won’t have my computer?? END OF THE WORLD. This sums up how I feel about that (be sure to read the caption at the bottom for the full effect).