Although I have mostly written here about my interior design work, I have never spent much energy defining my career or goals too strictly. My only consistent goal over the past 6 years has been to say “yes” to opportunities, show up, work hard, create things that challenge and inspire me- and see where that takes me.
Since I started Biscuit almost three years ago, I have balanced my client projects with product design/running the store, splitting my time pretty evenly between the two, and my work in each realm naturally enhanced the other. However, over the past year or two as Biscuit grew, I began to transition away from my client work and focus more on growing the business.
There are a lot of reasons for that- client work is exciting- I love immersing myself in someone else’s world and creating beautiful & functional spaces that are personal to them- but having two small children it can be hard to manage your time when you are so involved in other peoples lives. Mostly, though, I just love working with our team at Biscuit. My approach to interior design is very in my own head, which is not usually somewhere I want to spend an excessive amount of time, and I have found myself growing more collaborating with and learning from my Biscuit colleagues.
This spring, after a meeting with our team, I decided not to take on any new client work for the rest of the year to focus on some big things we have been working on with Biscuit– and most importantly have more time & flexibility for my family.
Literally two days later I got an e-mail from someone who has been very special to me and supportive of my career asking me to do this years 2015 Coastal Living Showhouse. Their original showhouse fell through due to weather, and they had lined up a beautiful home in Cinnamon Shores/Port Aransas but were on a tight schedule to have it finished by July to make their editorial deadline for the November issue.
Basically it was the greatest opportunity of my career, but I had doubts I was up for the challenge. Some of my design idols like Erika Powell, Ginger Brewton, and Betsy Burnham have absolutely slayed doing the showhouse the past few years and I felt out of my league. Not to mention I would have half the time designers typically get, and oh yeah- I had just decided to take some time off design work.
But then, as always…
Say yes. Show up. Work Hard. Create things.
And it was a huge challenge, but also hugely inspiring. I couldn’t have done it without my team at Biscuit and my family both of whom make the worst things bearable, and the best things even better, and were so supportive and encouraging. We all went down to Cinnamon Shores two weeks ago for the official opening party, and it was super spesh getting to show them the house and celebrate!
I wanted to show y’all a few behind the scenes, and inspiration behind the design.
The house when we first toured it in May. It was further along than the houses normally are when the designer signs on- but luckily I loved the layout and only had a few tweaks here and there. I wanted the house to fit into the community, but still bring in some fresh ideas to shake things up a bit.
On our first visit we were able to tour several beautiful houses in Cinnamon Shores, and we chose a few popular design touches used in the community- like ship lap -to carry through our design to balance some of the kookier colors, wallpapers, and materials we were bringing in.
The next thing to decide on was the color palette. I am always very inspired by the sense of place in my design work. Especially in naturally beautiful places like coastal towns, it’s always nice when the palette of the natural environment carries through to the interiors. For instance the ocean in Nantucket and in the north east is a much deeper blue, and reminds me of the navy, red Americana color palettes favored in the region. The Florida coast is much brighter, and makes me think of preppy pinks, greens, and turquoise ala Lily Pulitzer.
The Texas coast, which I have grown up visiting and love, is a much more muted. The sand here is almost the color of cinnamon- thus the name of the community Cinnamon Shores. There is beautiful wildlife, and it is a very casual, natural vibe. I wanted the color palette of the cinnamon sand, muted green dunes, hazy blue skies, to carry through the interior of the showhouse punctuated with pops of red and pink to keep it interesting.
(The open concept living/dining/kitchen on the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd day of install!)
Install was bonkers. We were making beds as walls were being painted, but in the end it came together and I think we pulled it off! I can’t wait to see the pictures in the magazine, but I wanted to give you a little taste of what we did because November is just much too long to wait…
I am really proud of the space, it is different for me, much more neutral- if you can say any space with a flaming red lacquered console is neutral 😉 and I am in love with it.
I am also in love with Valerie- my Biscuit work wife- who works so hard, keeps everything organized, has the best taste (and personality) and who just makes awesome things possible. I had to leave suddenly the second to last day of install for a family emergency, and she stayed and kept everything together, so just generally a huge round of applause for Valerie!
Thank you also to my most special people from Coastal Living: Steele, Nicole & Amy for the opportunity & support. I am so so grateful! Cinnamon Shores for your hospitality- I can’t wait to come back for vacation this time! And finally, to all of the sponsors for creating such beautiful products it made my job so much easier.
There is much more to say about the design, process, and experience, but I will wait until the full spread comes out- and I have had several naps- to look back on all of that because right now I am exhausted! If you are interested in seeing the home in person, there is more info on tickets and timing here!
I hope y’all enjoyed this glimpse into the project, and I will be back soon to tell you a bit more about those big Biscuit projects I alluded to earlier. Happy weekend! xoxo