Archives for the month of: July, 2011


Not even for a red sole. 🙂

Happy Friday Everyone.

And if you want to say,”That was fun!” at the end of your project

contact me at


Lost And Found.

Don’t you love it when you “lose” a friend for years and years and then one day quite by accident you not only “find” them but discover that they are happy and incredibly successful? That just happened to me and I can’t wipe the smile from my face.

While at Auburn I had a precious little cupie doll friend named Dana Barnes. She was the tiniest cheerleader who always was tossed the highest and because she was in Fashion Design and I in Interiors we spent many hours together at good ole Spidle Hall.

So last night I couldn’t sleep and ended up surfing random blog sites at midnight. Suddenly this post pops up about Dana Barnes who has won the ICFF ( International Contemporary Furniture Foundation) Award for textiles and was preparing for an exhibition at Ralph Pucci… was it possible?????


There she was right in The New York Times. My sweet, sweet little friend. Dana, I am so very proud of you and for you. Here is her story as told in The Times.

“Dana Barnes’s debut collection “Souled Objects” won the Editors Award for Textiles at last year’s ICFF. And deservedly so: They are like nothing you’ve ever seen. Her new collection, Unspun: Tangled and Fused, currently available at Ralph Pucci International.

This collection was inspired by a trip home, down south, where aspects of the landscape and vegetation (oak trees, hanging Spanish moss) made their way into the needlepoint and knotted vessels seen here.”

Actually, the whole thing started when her neighbors complained about the pitter patter of little feet and Dana had to come up with some way to cover the vast floor space in her 3250 square foot loft in Soho.





All photos from The New York Times

Traditional textiles were an earlier obsession, said Ms. Barnes, who has collected Asian pieces for years. She and Mr. Westhoff married in Nepal in 1996, and have traveled extensively in the Far East.

“Dana always meets the artisans wherever we go and brings stuff home,” he said. “I think, ‘Why is that even interesting?’ When we get it home, I can see it. She makes you see it.”

Ms. Barnes made banquette cushions out of Japanese saki-ori — indigo-dyed work clothes — and wrapped the leftovers around a giant steel spring. This reporter sat down on it, thinking it was a bench.

“It’s just a sculptural thing,” Ms. Barnes said. “I thought it looked neat.”

A colorful pile of woven clothing in a corner came from Hmong farmers, she said, explaining that she had traded Mr. Westhoff’s T-shirts and sunglasses for the pieces on a recent trip to Vietnam. “Look at this hat, isn’t it great?” she asked, holding up a striped cap. “I just love it.”

Mr. Westhoff said, “I really loved my sunglasses.”

That quote cracks me up. Turns out Dana has been a fixture on 7th Avenue all of these years designing collections for several internationally known fashion houses. She wanted more time at home with her young family and turned to her love of textiles to make that happen.

 You really must go to her home page at

to view the pictures of the process. It is quite amazing!!!

You go girl and War Eagle!

If you want to say,”That was fun!” at the end of your project

contact me at



My good friends from Southern Accents were in town this week to save as many of the architectural relics as they possibly could from the historic Gay House in Montgomery’s Garden District.  Home to one of the most beautiful staircases I have ever seen, this Queen Anne beauty sat high upon a hill fighting for survival. It was beautifully restored once but then a fire in 2007 caused so much damage that it was not economically feasible to save it again.

I remember feeling physically ill the morning this picture appeared in The Montgomery Advertiser. The fire is believed to have started from an unattended candle.


 I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen a prettier staircase than this one.

from wainscoting

to newel posts

She was a thing of beauty.

Working tirelessly in the heat of a southern summer Kolby and his crew meticulously disassembled each piece of the puzzle so that salvage lovers like me would have the opportunity to find new loving homes for it.



Mantles, windows and doors fill trailer after trailer. How is it possible to feel sadness and excitement at the same time.

How I would love to have the freedom to build the house that I see in my head utilizing the amazing products that were yesterday.

They just don’t made ’em like that anymore.

So as I stand in what used to be, looking through the window of tomorrow’s possibilities, I invite you to join me in my dream of creating wonderful new dwellings filled with the marvel of yesterday’s craftsmanship as we link

 old to new,

death to life,

endings to new beginnings.

And if you would like some help adding value to your project

and if you would like to be  able to say

“That was fun!” at the end of it 

contact me at


 Woo Hoo! One last trip to market to check on all the merchandise that is arriving for the Watercolor move-in and we are ready to hit the road. 

 This is what market looks like when it’s not market time. We were here to inspect some new pieces that just came “off the boat” and to visit with the artisans who were building some custom pieces for me. It was HOT and humid but mission accomplished!

 A week or two later and this is what my shop looked like!

I think we are just about full don’t you?! In a soon coming post we will address how a designer can save your project when the un-thinkable happens.

Let the fun begin!

Protecting the headboard with shrink-wrap.

 This was one of the many custom pieces made for this job.

The truck is loaded. The van is loaded. WE’RE OFF!!!

Part II (the move-in) and Part III ( the reveal) coming SOON!

If you want to say, “That was fun!” at then end of your project contact me at


The only thing that makes a weekend at the lake more perfect than normal is the opportunity to visit Bobby McAlpine’s newly finished private residence. From the massive black planters filled with boxwood balls out front to the mirror frames constructed from corrugated cardboard (that’s right) each room offered something that made you stop and reflect.

I loved this not so kid friendly table in the entry hall. The top was formed by layers of black river rock; An orchid  in front of the black art photo the only pop of “color”.

I don’t know who had the patience to make this mirror but I have to tell you that the chair I had to make in school out of corrugated cardboard looked NOTHING like this. LOL

Thanks for sharing Bobby.

 Auburn turns out some fine designers.

And if you want to say, “That was fun!” at the end of your project contact me at


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