Wednesday Style Points: Let Them Help You Through the Day

Wednesday Style Points: Let Them Help You Through the Day

Style Points – it’s that fun & sometimes funny place where our inner nerd with fears & goof ball antics meets our inner desire to be on trend & beautiful

I really do love style. Personal. Individual. Group. All of it.

There is something so radically beautiful about true style

It isn’t about being on some list or getting into some group, it’s all about being who you are, where you are & why you are right now

Seriously freeing

What is your style today?

What is it that you embrace?

Are you loving how you are looking on the inside AND on the outside today?

That is a major struggle for me. I have never struggled with my weight before like this – whoa baby – and it’s hard!

But getting to a place where I am embracing my “Style” is helping

Wednesday Style Points: Can I Wear a Ball Gown to the Studio Because I am an Interior Designer?

I love getting dressed. It simply makes me feel better. I have tried to wear a t shirt and I have a visceral reaction to it! As in ewwwwwww. But I have seriously stylin’ friends who can rock a t. They laugh with me & I with them. Not at eachother. With. What is your style go to?

It’s also helping me make time to take time to take care of me & get back into the shape I like – one that is healthy – running, swimming – all of it

Where are you?

What are those style points you go back to?

Do they help you get comfortable so you can achieve your best today?

Does your inner nerd meet your inner desire for beauty?

I hope so!

Style points: you have them, I KNOW you do!

Rock them today!

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

xo Ann

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ps: today? you rock. tomorrow has enough trouble of its’ own.

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”

oy

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

Saturday Stuff: Getting My Decor Right So I Can Live My Life

Saturday Stuff: Getting My Decor Right So I Can Live My Life

I pretty much think most of life’s issues can be solved thru Design + Decorating

Ok, well, most of them…

I mean a cool coffee table can make a girls day!

Ok, some of them…

Truly? maybe all of them 😉

Doesn’t funky wallpaper cover all our painting sins ;)?

I mean, it’s Saturday…family is all home…family room can get rather chaotic, everyone is cooking some fabulous breakfast, dishes everywhere, a teenager leaves the pan on the stove & a glass of milk on the table before rushing out to get a run in…

The phone rings, someone get it!

Or maybe it’s a sippy cup dripping with juice stuck to the high chair because last night everyone hit the wall

The phone rings, someone get it!

Or perhaps the cat thought your wine glass was a great toy & you wake up to find Max the Persian purring over a few drops of Merlot….

The phone rings, hey Max…where did you HIDE it?!

Whatever it is, it’s “STUFF”

Life stuff – and whatever surrounds us, those design & decorating things, either make life stuff easier or harder

Remember that Frasier example from a few days ago

So this Saturday, my house is a bit disordered however the systems we set in place catch it from going completely overboard (most of the time)

What is your Saturday Stuff?

Did the sofa catch the remote last night?

Did the cat knock over the wine glass?

Is the sippy cup stuck to the cool table from Pottery Barn?

Yes, my teen’s cleats are on the English Coffee Table so the dogs won’t chew them…just an older version of that sippy cup 😉

Design. Real life living. It’s the good stuff…

What’s yours?

What are your systems?

How do they handle your stuff?

Saturday!

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

xo Ann

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Don’t forget to send your email to Ann@Couturechateau.com if you want to be a tester! We have fewer than 5 spots left! Are you FEARLESS enough? This Webinar is on “How To Custom Decorate With Retail Product & Make It Look Like The Pro’s”

How To Use Retail & Make It Look Like The Pro’s…let’s avoid the “nice Pottery Barn House” because you are so worth it!!

We are working on zipping up the name, so LET ME KNOW! What do you think of:

“Help, I’m a West Elm Addict: Decorate With Retail & Make It Pass The BFF Test”

“My Catalog Life: How To Get My Family Room Right Using Retail”

“My Family Room Wins: How To Start & Actually Finish A Decorated Room Using Only Retail”

Remember, as one of my testers, you will be on the inside track. Your feedback MATTERS! These are systems I have used for years with my full service clients and am SO excited to get them out to you!!

I want you to say YES if there is even the smallest part of you that is thinking about it! We will start testing in late February. Tomorrow we should have a short video for you to watch.

FEARLESS. It’s what 2013 is all about.

Thursday Spotlight: Who Am I & How In Heaven’s Name Does That Relate To My Sofa?!

Thursday Spotlight: Who Am I & How In Heaven’s Name Does That Relate To My Sofa?!

Spotlight: Who Am I?

My favorite sofa style for me? High arm, high back, deep cushion…in navy or red velvet……opposite a white contemporary piece….

I love the mix of old & new, contemporary, traditional. For me? Who I am today? In my living room, this mix feels like a great dinner party…enough tradition to keep it real & some spark to make it interesting….

Spotlight: Who Are You?

The roll arm…always a classic. Image from Apartment Therapy. Linked.

And how in the name of anything does that relate to my sofa….

Yesterday, I shared a photo from the TV Series Frasier. We saw how the choice of Frasier’s Bespoke Sofa ala Coco Chanel contrasted to his Father’s choice of recliner.

Both of those pieces were perfect for who the characters were – at that specific time

Knowing who you are so you can be consistent in every area of your life, starting with your “nest” is important

I believe with all my soul that we need each other to encourage, equip & figure it out. We cannot do this alone…we simply can’t

It can equip you or hinder you

This is such a great visual to me….to the ant, THIS is shopping! They work together to find just the right piece to be who they are…so silly & yet so relevant…image linked.

Can you imagine how uncomfortable the character Martin would have been on the sofa & vice versa?

SAFETY + ORDER + BEAUTY™

Yes, you know…one of my trademarked systems 😉

1) from a SAFETY standpoint, he had physical limitations. he needed his recliner to accommodate those issues

2) from an ORDER standpoint, he needed the recliner with a table close by for his drink, remote & as an easy spot for his dog Eddie

3) from a BEAUTY standpoint, that recliner had lived with him for years. It was a pleasant memory and comforting spot where he could delight in all that life had handed him. It was beautiful to HIM

Am I telling you to go buy a recliner?

NO

Though this one might be ok. Image linked.

Am I letting you know that it’s ok to decorate for you, today? YES

In 7 years we will re-asses. My Decorating Principle # 1: Decorate with no more than 7 years in mind.

Who are you?

Does your sofa fit?

Does it do for YOU what Martin’s recliner does for him?

Does it do for YOU what Frasier’s sofa does for him?

I hope so

Spotlight. You.

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

xo Ann

Tuesday Tidbit: Exquisite Design Detail & How It Reflects Us

Tuesday Tidbit: Exquisite Design Detail & How It Reflects Us

It’s Tuesday! Most productive day of the week ;)….so far…

As you know I am in Arkansas with my Design Mastermind Group. We had a fabulous dinner last evening & have so many new wonderful women as part of the group

My tidbit for the day: Design Detail

My challenge: How It Reflects Us

I love grand design

These "fragments" are from the Plaza Hotel in NYC. I re-purposed them as mirrors heading downstairs to our family rumpus room. Divine. Makes me feel as if I am in NYC about to have tea!

These “fragments” are from the Plaza Hotel in NYC. I re-purposed them as mirrors heading downstairs to our family rumpus room. Divine. Makes me feel as if I am in NYC about to have tea!

I also love the detail

You may know this picture…it’s been around a while. Detail of life. Constructed with care to do things set before us….image linked.

I think one of the reasons I love the detail is because it reminds me that special starts small.

Rearcher Michael Davidson, from under the microscope. Image linked to article from 2012. Detail is beautiful. We just have to be willing to stop and look.

There is something exquisite in all of us that needs to be paid attention to in order for us to thrive & when we capture the detail, we capture that exquisite

Not everyone “sees” the detail

I believe as designers + decorators + people, we live victoriously when we are able to “see” the detail, the exquisite around us

Not everyone captures the exquisite at first passing

Detail. Precise. You are precise in every detail! Special in construction.

That’s ok

Exquisite is for those are available to perceive it. It’s a process that can take a lifetime.

It may not be time for someone to notice just yet….

Tuesday Tidbit: What is YOUR detail today?

What is the exquisite in your life you need to stop & notice?

Are you reflected in that? I hope so!

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

xo Ann

Thursday Spotlight: Practical Applications, How To Make Couture Chateau Decorating Principles Work In Real Life!

Thursday Spotlight: Practical Applications, How To Make Couture Chateau Decorating Principles Work In Real Life

So you have a Decorating Principle in front of you

Seems logical

Let’s start with # 1:

Decorate with no more than 7 years in mind

I mean, Decorate for 7 years…good idea

Now what?!

Safety + Order + Beauty™

(Yes, another one of my Trademarked Processes)

I mean, how do I make this practical?

Three things, in this order:

1. Safety

2. Order

3. Beauty

It’s the SPOTLIGHT we put on every PRINCIPLE when working with Full Service Clients in that order

 #1 = Safety

Addressing safety, especially emotional & spiritual safety in decorating provides hedges. Pleasant boundaries that make a house a HOME. They can be many things to many people. The point is, if we address them, we can manage them & decorate a space to deal with them…

Therefore, we address every component of SAFETY in their life with respect to the PRINCIPLE at hand

Example: For the next 7 years….what do I need to do to be safe

Physically + Emotionally + Spiritually

What does YOUR safety look like in each of those areas?

Setting up residence overseas? Happen to be a diplomat? Physical safety is a component of our Design. Spiritual as well – there may be things we need to be cognizant of if someone is in and around volatile religious situations

Diplomatic Residence in London est 2017. Image linked.

Young kids? Infants? Safety can be about latches, locks & electrical outlets AND buttons on tufted sofas…..

Safety is simply not something we should overlook!

Troubled child moving home? Safety can mean no bar in the guest house & a video camera at the end of the property. It can also mean simple clean and calming interior spaces that are designed to heal…the right colors, textures…

I love this space by Mary McDonald. But I probably wouldn’t translate this boldness into a space for someone who is struggling…and those are conversations best had at the outset of a Decorating job. Trust me. You’d be surprised at how much we can fool ourselves into thinking…”oh, that would be fine…my son is coming back from rehab, but I don’t think it matters what the front room looks like…” Ummm, yes, it does!

Safety can mean many things – and you’d be surprised how many detials get overlooked when you don’t address these things

Remember, I created these Decorating Principles to equip me to best serve my Clients

With years of working alongside many different types of Clients in many different situations, I noticed that the Diplomat & Stay At Home Suburban Mother had more in common when it came to the PROCESS of finding the right Decor than first glance

Universal + Customizable

The process we use is the same for both = Universal

The outcome or answers are different = Custom

I love sharing these – my hope is that they will bless you!

Tomorrow? Step 2 in this process (Frugal) Order…

Hang on – this is going to be a fun walk thru with our Decorating Principles!!

And once we get through the top 10, I will let you know how we will make the other 20 available to you

Fun!

Spotlight

Shine it & LIVE!

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

xo Ann

Wednesday Style Points: Couture Chateau Decorating Principle # 8

Wednesday Style Points: Couture Chateau Decorating Principle # 8

Couture Chateau Decorating Principle # 8:

Great Decorating EQUIPS Living, it doesn’t ECLIPSE Living

Equip: /iˈkwip/

A verb: To supply with the necessary items for a particular purpose

I thought this was a fun quote. We are equipped to do things. YOU are equipped to help me do what I cannot or choose not & I am equipped to do the same for you!

I happen to think that’s my job as a Decorator

To supply YOU with the necessary items

Encouragement

Teaching

My Seminars are in small groups so people can learn together! We will share 2013 dates soon.

Design

It looks so easy doesn’t it…just try it! I always counsel nervous clients to try and then call me…seems to work ;)! This image from The Skirted Roundtable with Alexa Hampton

Decor

Training

Not to worry – I’ll be here when the phone rings…& will gratefully, graciously walk along side…

Procurement

We use Studio Webware to make sure Client’s jobs run smoothly

The Right Sofa

There is a look for everyone. We just need to find yours! Versace here…for which I have a weakness…a terrible terrible weakness…. Would this work in my real life today? No, but I can interpret elements and make them relevant

Processing

Follow up

For a Particular Purpose

For You to Live a Custom Life!

Versus:

Eclipse:/iˈklips/

A verb: To obscure the light from or to

How sad would it be if you hired a Decorator and they left ‘you’ out of the space…when all you saw was “them” after they were finished…

I don’t want my Decorating to eclipse YOU

It should EQUIP (enhance…)

Style Points

YOU have them

I have them

Great Decorating is simply a transfer of gifts that equip

Love this principle

You know what I’m talking about if you think about it

In Fashion, it’s the person who wears head to toe Burberry because it’s Burberry

In Theater, it’s when you remember the set and not the play

Design IS a process…there is nothing static about it. The Decorator who wants to create a static place is staging for a photograph, not decorating for a life…..I want to decorate for life…

Tomorrow we are going to spotlight the PROCESS we use to PRACTICALLY APPLY our Decorating Principles…

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

xo Ann

Thursday Spotlight: Focused Thoughts on the Past Year

Thursday Spotlight: Focused Thoughts on the Past Year

A lite post today, been a lot to ponder this Holiday Season in our Homes…

What does the spotlight see from this past year?

Elle Decor 2012 Luxury Now. In the company of the greats, am deeply humbled to be picked up on this topic.

Elle Decor 2012 Luxury Now. In the company of the greats, am deeply humbled to be picked up on this topic.

I am taking a few days to think about all we have accomplished this past year

Why?

Because if we don’t, if I don’t…I will perceive that nothing much has happened

Seminar is SOLD OUT but we will VIDEO it for an affordable download option broken into 5 Segments! So excited!!

Seminar is SOLD OUT but we will VIDEO it for an affordable download option broken into 5 Segments! So excited!!

Don’t we always take that route?

“Nah…not much happened this year…no biggie….”

And then we sigh, and wonder, is it worth it? All the work? The effort?

Meeting Charlotte Moss at High Point Market...

Meeting Charlotte Moss at High Point Market…

Is anyone out there walking the same path with our Decorated Homes our Designed Lives our Custom Passions? We wonder…

But if we focus a bit – really look at the details – spotlight those accomplishments & record somewhere, anywhere, what has gone before

Our gorgeous custom crewel out of India...truly special

Our gorgeous custom crewel out of India…truly special

We are better equipped to face what is ahead & to find those who walk the same journey

So join me! Focus on what has gone before – so we can journey ahead together…

Simple things are ok

Project in Process

Project in Process

I make no judgments – sometimes getting a bathroom painted is a MAJOR life hurdle, I know

So here’s to our custom life together

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

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

A painted bathroom, a decorated Christmas Tree, a remodeled Estate, a Birkin Bag or a Target Backpack

It matters not

It’s the process that counts…

Joyfully – it’s the process that counts

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

xo Ann

Saturday Studio Time: Custom Holiday Feature

Saturday Studio Time: Custom Holiday Feature

Working today. Grumble? Not exactly….

We are out in front of the Studio doing some retro Holiday Crafty Type Painting

Here’s a sneak peek….stay tuned and have a GREAT weekend

Daniel, our Assistant Project Facilitator and Inventory Chief…working today out in front of our Studio Door.

As soon as we are free to share this feature, we will.

Hint:

Customizing with Color

Using Recycled Material

Up-Cycling Holiday Basics

Are you working on a Holiday Craft this weekend?

Love this Ikea Blanket. Cozy up on the sofa. Malin Band Throw. $19.99

Let us know! We’re in!!

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

xo Ann

Wednesday Style Points: Details Make the Room

Wednesday Style Points: Details Make the Room

Yesterday we spent all day photographing for November Features

What kept us all day? DETAILS

a couture hem detail from Tien Chiu

How does the hem hang on a custom swivel chair with interlined plackets

Interlining comes in different weights. One of my favorite materials!

How does the hand knit throw blanket drape on an ottoman when it’s cashmere? what about cotton?

I love this site…”A community for hand spinners….”. Do you drool over the detail in hand spun yarns like I do? Swoon.

When we put rooms together, the envelope – the floor plan – of course those things matter

But what makes a room couture?

Details

Think about it. DETAILS make you – well – you.

Have a look around in your “best dressed” space at home

What do you notice? What is it that makes the space so special?

For me, it’s the custom details

The way the gilt lines a coffee table

The interlined chair skirts that look “thick”

A Silver Leaf (not pink;)! lined lamp shade

What do you notice?

I would love to know the custom details that make your spaces sing…

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

xo Ann