Tuesday Tidbit: Three Tips I Use to Keep Perfectionism at Bay in Decorating

Tuesday Tidbit: Three Tips I Use to Keep Perfectionism at Bay in Decorating

Tip 1: Imagine people living in the space.

Drinking coffee, eating at the table, emptying the dishwasher, folding laundry. I literally think about how they will navigate the space and get used to the movement as I am planning the decor. It helps remind me that books are not static items to look at, dishes will get stacked in cupboards and laundry will get thrown into a chute or hamper.

Tip 2: Go all out on Decorations they will use.

I spec out the best french press, the most beautiful laundry hamper, the gorgeous tea pot. I try to spec out lovely UTILITARIAN items that my clients touch each day. I believe it elevates the process & engages stewardship of space. These things are meant to be used, loved, washed, drunk out of. It’s like style points daily.

Tip 3: Practice using something fancy TODAY.

Yup. I’ve said it before, I will say it again. What are you waiting for? Use the china, eat breakfast in the dining room, drink your wine out of your crystal tonight. I absolutely love making the everyday the holy part. The truth is, the every day IS the holy part. And the person sitting next to us is deserving of our best.

Why are these my perfectionist breaking tips?

Because it isn’t until we realize that NOTHING is ever perfect that we start to break the cycle. That ordinary morning cup of coffee will never be perfect. Buy the French Press & make it in the French Press anyway. That perfect party you are planning in your “Martha” head will not materialize peacefully unless you practice using the gorgeous today & get comfortable with it. And it still won’t be perfect when you throw the party.

Tuesday Tidbit: Some takeaways from my own perfectionist in recovery heart…

What are your tips?

How do you get thru these tendencies?

Share!! We need the blessing of each other!!

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”

xo Ann

Tuesday Tidbit: Making Time For Design

Tuesday Tidbit: Making Time For Design

As I cleared the decks in the office yesterday afternoon

Ran some long overdue errands

Broke some tile, had to ask for forgiveness from a gracious client

I realized I hadn’t been making space for Design lately

At least not the kind of space I need

Do you need to clear the decks to get into your Design Groove?

Where do you do your best work?


Living Room Sofa?

From A Gracious Home Blog. Image Linked. I could tea it up here & design some fun stuff…

Back Porch?

It was nice to get some clear flat surfaces to just rest my eyes & think about some projects upcoming. Let me know what you have on the books. Are you thinking about a new remodel? A spring refresh?

Tuesday Tidbit: Take the time today!

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”

xo Ann

Tuesday Tidbit: Do You Have A Little Luxury in Your Home?

Tuesday Tidbit: Do You Have A Little Luxury in Your Home?


It makes a big statement

It can also intimidate

“I’m not worthy of Luxury”

“Oh, I don’t need luxury….

“Ewwww, Luxury is waste”

Not so, not so at all

At least not the kind of Luxury I am talking about

I’m talking about those little luxuries that make a huge difference in my day – in your day – in your home

One of mine:

My husband brings me coffee in the morning

Coffee, fresh ground, smell fills the house = luxury

What do I miss most when he travels besides him (mostly:)?

That he sets the coffee at night & brings it to me in the morning

I feel as if I live upstairs at Downton Abbey

trust me I don’t…but it makes me feel that way!

It’s just a porcelain cup with black coffee yet = luxury

What little luxury do you have

I know there must be at least one

What is it that you really miss when it doesn’t happen

Maybe it’s a taste & smell like my morning coffee

Maybe it’s a pillow or a special chair

Covered Buttons & a peek at our custom Couture Chateau lining on those private label pillows...

Why do I line + interline, cover buttons & custom make bespoke pillows for clients? LUXURY…

Maybe it’s a type of weather – the coolness of a spring morning

Maybe it’s a bloom on a rose or fresh cut grass

this color – I love the luxury of pale purple

Tuesday Tidbit: Delight in the everyday Luxury today

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”

xo Ann

Tuesday Tidbit: Time To Get In Shape, Darn…:). Can’t I Just Design Only?!

Tuesday Tidbit: Time To Get In Shape, Darn…:) Can’t I Just Design Only?!

You know those signs

You hear it, read it, see it….friends oh so gently remind you…

time to get in shape Ann


I know it, I have been in shape…but ouch!

As I told a friend this morning, it seems so much easier to just buy really nice clothes & pop on a pair of Louboutins!


I LOVE Oscar. And the color? Divine. The bow? Perfection.

So today my tidbit has nothing to do with homes or design, well I guess Lifestyle Design, sort of

Got back in the pool this morning. It will be a long road forward…

Oscar again. I also happen to love yellow. The 3/4 sleeve on this Spring RTW is a perfect length. Ditto the skirt portion. Flattering.

But journey with me.

Do you need to modify something?

I need to get my head out of work 24-7 and allocate some time to getting in shape

It is easier for me to work

Oscar Earrings. Cute with the dress, right?!

What about you?

What is good that you know you must do that you don’t?

I can’t be the only one…

Tuesday Tidbit: We are what we do.

Amanda Nisbet Design. Image linked. Just having a yellow moment. Does any body do this better than she? I think not!


“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”

xo Ann


PS: If there is some tidbit you need to change, let me know!  Or if you aren’t ready to share, just know I am here on the journey with you. We cannot do it alone. Heck, my husband had to practically throw me in the car this morning to go swim. I resisted – the coffee was good & the blog was calling…and now? I am still in my swim parka! BUT have at least started. The first step is the hardest….Have a great day. Someone out there needs you!

Tuesday Tidbit: Taking Time to Tinker With Design to Get It Just Right

Tuesday Tidbit: Taking Time to Tinker With Design to Get It Just Right!

It’s always interesting when design doesn’t just “come to you”

I absolutely love this! Decorating & Design is fun…it’s also a bit of work 😉

As a Designer by trade, we sometimes think it should just happen…without work or effort

There are times when we just walk into a space and “see it”

Yes, that’s the mania part

Then there are spaces & places that trick us

I mean really Esher! Image linked. Sometimes this is how a design job starts!

They toy with our heads, they mess with our 3-d modeling

We really have to pour heart & head into it

Do you ever struggle with that?

When you are planning a room at your home or designing one for another?

Is there ever that moment when you think “I’ve got nothing”

Time for a walk

Time for a head clear…a run, anything

I have found that if I try to jam in a bunch of design inspiration in, all I get is

1) over loaded

2) over stuck

But a clear head, some fresh air & time away from the Designing World always does a brain good.

What do you get stuck on?

Do you feel like this is the start or the end?!

Is there a space that you just can’t seem to finish?

Is there a room you’ve just given up on?

Let me know!

Yes, even Designer’s have them…

Tuesday Tidbit: What’s yours?

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”

xo Ann


PS: We are Tobi Fairley’s this week in Little Rock, Arkansas. Enjoying her Get Published Camp with some good friends. We will keep you posted. So fun!

Tuesday Tidbit: What I Am Loving Now In Spring Cleaning!

Tuesday Tidbit: What I Am Loving Now In Spring Cleaning!

In the morning, everything…

Along about 11 am ABSOLUTELY nothing!!


Just being honest!

I am fine at doing the regular clean outs – the stuff you can see…it’s part of my job & I love it


This cleaning out my files? HARD for me.

I am that (confession) person who stores EVERYTHING on my desktop



It’s like a wildly out of control pinterest board…and I wonder…WHY can’t I find the files?!

Since we have streamlined & everyone is now offsite or remote, I no longer have the accountability of someone walking into the Studio & looking over my shoulder & seeing the “Desktop” aka my personal pinterest board!

When we started recording the Webinars, I realized something had to change…so I casually dropped everything into a folder called “Hide My Desktop Crap”

Not so pretty…even with a hot pink background & a pug picture overlay…

Yes = true Luxury Design, right?


Now I have spent too many hours untangling this mess & I have MUCH compassion for those real life messes that creep up on us.

Compassion = it’s an amazingly powerful thing. We ALL need it.

Do you struggle with keeping any area clean?

Is there any area that is your hidden confession or pile of “they won’t see that”?

A closet where old chargers go?

A drawer full of things you will go through “next week”?

I know we shouldn’t do these things

I KNOW how powerful it is to be clean through and through

It really is

But sometimes it gets out of control

Real life living. I want my Louboutins to be shiny & perfect, my car shined within an inch of its life…& my outfit perfectly pressed

YES, I have shoe addiction….:)

& then you get a peek at my desktop.


Time to file, edit & DELETE!!

Tuesday Tidbit.

What’s yours?!

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”

xo Ann


PS: Practice compassion! Start with yourself….it’s hard. We overcoming perfectionists struggle daily with this. I just finished a GREAT book by Brene Brown entitled “Daring Greatly”. I downloaded it to my Kindle & read it in one sitting. Blessed through & through.

PPS: If you want to stop for an hour & just be filled, check out the Webinar we finally put out there. The link is here. FEARLESS. It’s our word for 2013. If you’ve already signed up your email you will not be double “listed” you are just taken straight to the Webinar! My heart is that it would bless you so you can pay it forward. Remember, it’s really not about “the couch”…xoxo

Tuesday Tidbit: Never Decorate When You Are…..

Tuesday Tidbit: Never Decorate When You Are…..




Super Happy???

Humm….did I just say that? Super Happy???

Let me just throw this out there:

Has there ever been a time when you were super excited and you bought something that didn’t look so great two weeks later?

I call those Vacation Clothes Moments “VCM’s”

You know…when you are in Nantucket and buy the cutest pants, not the reds which are appropriate anywhere imo 🙂 but the ones you can ONLY wear in Nantucket during a few months. They usually involve maps & whales…


When you are in Mustique and the white linen something calls you……and then you realize that $$$$ for a simple something that you can only wear in Mustique…..might not have been the best idea

Sometimes we do the same thing when it comes to our homes

Now, this might be fantastic as an art installation, but no amount of champagne & caviar should convince you that you need this in your main living area.

ESPECIALLY when it comes to our homes

We get super excited & are SO SURE that the “Insert Any Item Here” will look perfect on our entry hall table. Besides, at $$$$$$ it’s “such a deal” ;)!

Tuesday Tidbit: Do you have any “Don’t ever decorate when you are ———?” stories to share?

Can you laugh about them now?

I would so love to hear!!

I can not be the only one….

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”

xo Ann


PS: Make sure and sign up for our Beta Test Website! We have an awesome group & YOU need to be a part of it!! Don’t worry, I think we’ve sent out 4 emails over the past months while in test format. Link HERE.

Tuesday Tidbit: How Much Have You Wasted On Bad Decorating?

Tuesday Tidbit: How Much Have You Wasted On Bad Decorating?

It’s another NUGGET from our Decorate Like A Pro System Free Webinar

My hope is that by sharing some of these things you will just HAVE to join us!!

Here’s today’s question:

“How much TIME, MONEY & EMOTION have you wasted on bad decorating decisions? Or MEDIOCRE ones? Have you ever been angry over your house?”


We tackle this stuff head on.

Why? Because I believe – after so many years in this industry – that if we don’t, we never really get past all that baggage stuff & move on to EXQUISITE spaces!!

Think about it!

What would you give to not make another bad decorating choice?

What would you do if you could avoid the “mediocre” & actually live with beauty that inspired you?

How about this: what would it be worth to you and your family if you were never angry over your space again?

We tackle these issues head on! We talk and teach about WHAT to do about these

How to move forward in PEACE!

Make sure you are signed up for our Free Webinar when it comes out live. The drop date is March 30.

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”

xo Ann

Tuesday Tidbit: Nuggets of Blessing From the Design Bloggers Conference

Tuesday Tidbit: Nugget of Blessing From The Design Bloggers Conference

You never know where nuggets will come from in life. Sometimes they are easy to spot, sometimes they are like fabulous truffles & we need just the right hog to find them…but when they do, it’s extravagant blessing at it’s best :)!

My Tuesday Tidbit (blessing) takeaway today is this…

You really DO belong where you ARE right now

One of our bespoke custom  lined antique fragment pillows...it was made to be "in the moment" for a dear client

One of our bespoke custom lined antique fragment pillows…it was made in an excellent manner to be an extravagant blessing. I believe the same is true for you – you were made in an excellent manner to be an  extravagant blessing.

Doesn’t mean you have to STAY there…but where you are is just right, for today

Whatever house, space or place you inhabit today is the right place to start the rest of your life

By dwelling HERE, we are in the moment. We show up with our whole self.

It’s actually THAT which makes us authentic.

Are you authentic today?

Are your surroundings – your spaces & places authentically you today?

Blessings. Even when we think we can’t find them easily there are others close by who see & smell them out for us & steward them into beauty.

I love this! Such a fun metaphor for all our lives. We wade in the everyday & curate the exquisite in each other. It is why I love all things about design. The process is as beautiful as the outcome.

May your Tuesday be a day of blessing

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”™

xo Ann

Tuesday Tidbit: Small Blessings Make The Day

Tuesday Tidbit: Small Blessings Make The Day

First, thank you to all who have extended kindness & grace as we deal with this nasty nasty bug

Jokingly referred to in our house as the “50 year Flu”


That said, some of the smallest blessings make the day delightful

Laughter thru the ick

May these be encouraging to you TODAY

Where you are, who you are, why you are

Tuesday Tidbit: From my mug of hot tea with lemon (& brandy) to yours!

Remember…comparison is the thief to joy. You are delightful. May today be a day filled with laughter even if that laughter has some phlegm ;)! xoxo

“Live a custom life. There is only one you.”™

xo Ann