I can hardly believe that 2012 is now behind us. It seems like just yesterday that I was heading to LA for the Design Blogger’s Conference. Two more trips to California later, and the year has come to a close. 2012 was a year I will not forget for many reasons, but as I look back on the experiences and opportunities I have had in an industry that I love, I feel incredibly grateful. It is a true blessing to have a career that allows me to work with trusting clients, travel to interesting places with inspiring people, continually learn about history and exceptional craftsmanship, and explore my the depths of my creativity daily.
2012 got off to a rather unexpected start when I received ELLE DECOR‘s Blogger’s Choice award for Up-and-Comers in 2012. What a huge honor that was to be recognized for such an award along side some of my favorite designers and friends!
Next, I was off to Los Angeles for a week of seminars and lectures on blogging and social media at the Design Blogger’s Conference. While my tendency for privacy will not allow me to consider myself a real “blogger” there is something special that happens when you gather a group of individuals with that amount of creative energy and similar interest into a ballroom. And, common interests become the catalyst for natural friendships.
In February, I was the recipient of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art‘s Shutze Award for Interior Design for a project I completed a few years ago Atlanta. I was not only really excited by this honor, but also really surprised! The Southeast Chapter of ICAA founded the Schutze Awards in 2006 as a tribute to the late Philip Trammell Shutze who was one of America’s finest classical architects.
In April, I headed to Morocco for the Design Leadership Summit with some of my dear friends and design colleagues. We explored the ancient tombs and medersas of Marakech and shopped in the soukes. And our outing to see the Majorelle Gardens was spectacular. Traveling with this exceptional group always proves to be educational, inspiring, hilarious, exhausting, and really just a lot of fun!
This year I was also honored by being named one of 2012′s New Trad designers! Thank you Traditional Home for recognizing the tremendous efforts my staff and I pour into our projects and for liking the results! The TRADhome issue launched in April and featured a gracious write up from friend, Ronda Carman and photos from a project of mine on Kiawah Island.
As a part of the 2012 New Trad class, I attended a party in New York City hosted by Traditional Home to honor the winning designers. While I was in NYC, I also attended the beautiful Art and Antique Dealers League of America‘s Spring Show. My appreciation for timeless details was certainly enhanced after the show by having seen so many intricate objects in one place!
In the midst of Spring and a hectic work schedule, I made a quick trip to Connecticut to attend the Trade Secrets show to absorb lovely antiques, some fresh air and beautiful scenery. It was my ideal way to spend a sunny Saturday morning, and I highly recommend the weekend trip to everyone I can. Bunny Williams, the founder of Trade Secrets, was kind enough to give us a private tour of her own gardens while they were being photographed by Flower Magazine. They are perfectly imperfect, and a natural manifestation of her creative talent.
Next, Tobi Fairley asked me to write guest post for series she was working on for her blog. I wrote about patience being a part of the creative process– something I need to be reminded of on a daily basis!
This past summer, the office was busy planning, designing and preparing for the Traditional Home Hamptons Designer Showhouse. We really enjoyed working in the Hamptons and with the talented team at Traditional Home. And, to make the experience even more fun, we partnered with Serena & Lily, using many of their fabulous products in the design of our guest bedroom.
The fall started with and invitation to be one of the Tastemakers at Birmingham’s annual Antiques at the Gardens to benefit the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. I was asked to curate a booth around the theme, “Let There Be Light,” which featured some of my favorite lamps, custom designed iron fixtures and many beautiful shades.
In October, I made a quick trip to High Point, North Carolina for the fall market. My favorite part of the trip was getting to see a sneak peak of friend Ronda Carman’s new book, Designers at Home: Personal Reflections on Stylist Living! I am excited to be included in her first collaboration with Rizzoli which will be released this Spring.
I packed my bags again in October and headed for sunny California to explore Santa Barbara. The trip was sponsored by the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art and gave us an in-depth look at early-to-mid 20th century Southern California-style architecture. I can’t say enough good things about the experience, but one of the highlights was a personal tour of a house designed by John Salandino.
2012 came to a close with two Atlanta Homes and Lifestyles-related happenings. One of my favorite projects- the redesign of a Philip Trammell Shutze house, was featured in the November issue of the magazine. Then in December, I participated in the AHL Christmas House and designed the Gentleman’s Study.
And mixed into all of that, I was fortunate enough to have been able to spend time in Charleston, my favorite US city, and to visit Blackberry Farm (read my post about the trip here), my favorite weekend retreat. I always enjoy learning more about the artisanship and natural beauty of both of these places, and I look forward to visiting both again soon!
Most importantly, I can’t forget to mention the residential and hospitality projects I’ve been working on this year. I scoured countless showrooms and shops in Birmingham, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Charleston, Nashville, and New York City searching for one-of-a-kind pieces for various projects. And, I spent countless hours collaborating with gifted architects, and contractors on the many details that result in individual homes for our clients. From a beach house on Kiawah Island to a contemporary apartment in Manhattan to the restoration of an old Georgian home right here in Birmingham, we’ve been all over the place! I’m so very thankful for my wonderful clients who allow me to work on such incredible projects, a staff that supports my creative inspirations, an industry that inspires me daily, my supportive family and friends, (including all of you still reading this never-ending post) and the gift of creativity!
Cheers to 2013!