Sunday, December 11, 2011


I've packed up and moved to a lovely land far, far away!

THE GOOD NEWS IS YOU CAN JOIN ME!  Don't be scared, hop in the boat and follow us on our latest journey by clicking HERE!

love y'all!


Thursday, December 1, 2011

Blamo Toys

New discovery! My wife and I are now obsessed with Blamo toys.

"Rice baby" and "Munch" are our fav's -

With so much reproduction of EVERYTHING in today's world it's VERY REFRESHING to see something creative & unique, no matter what industry it's in.

Spencer Hansen originally founded Blamo in 2007 to create a more organic and enduring species of toys that are designed to outlast fickle fads. Hansen splits most of his time between San Francisco's art scene, Bali, and the mountains of Idaho. He claims he draws inspiration from all over the world, but more specifically from these three areas to create each WONDERFUL specimen.

Spencer Hansen also says, "a good toy design is one you want to touch".

I couldn't agree more. He uses REAL materials (leathers, woods, metals, & glass) that he discovers and collects from all over the world.

And, as if the Blamo Toys aren't creative enough, Hansen also came up with his own line of adult knit onesies that allow fans to embody their favorite characters.

To receive more inspiration and information on Blamo Toys, click here!

Have a great (think outside of the box type of) day.

love y'all!


Thursday, November 10, 2011

REAL LIFE perspective

Typically I focus on design related inspiration for this blog. Every once in a while I stumble upon a story that isn't necessarily design related, but IS MOST DEFINITELY worth sharing.

I hope this video not only inspires you, but gives you some perspective on life's challenges and how our attitude can change the way we handle "the storms" in life. This sort of positive thinking is EXACTLY what we need more of in a world that can be pretty harsh sometimes. Stay positive and approach each day with confidence and excitement because not only will it help you enjoy a better life, but who knows how many other people it will inspire to do the same.

Next time you run into adversity in your life, don't stress out about it or think about the negative aspects of your situation. Stay positive, fight for what you want, and BE PATIENT (this is the one I struggle with the most). I've learned, though, that BIG THINGS take a lot longer to happen and require more effort and persistence!

Love y'all! Spread the love!


Tuesday, November 8, 2011

hot air balloons on the vintage

My inspiration today? Vintage hot air balloons! There is a lot to admire and be inspired from in the photo below. Shoot, the CONCEPT of a hot air balloon is enough for me... and I WILL travel in one before I die, guaranteed.

Some more obvious inspiration comes from the vintage quality of this photo and the concept behind some of the first hot air balloons ever to grace our skies! So maybe these weren't the FIRST (I wikipedia'd it and the 1st one to launch was in 1783 in Paris, MERCY!) Anywho, these balloons look so much like oversized plump bubble gum bubbles that I just want to pop them!

Back to inspiration- the perspective and angle from which this photo is taken is spot on. Who is the lonely lady to the right? I love the outfits of everyone in the shot, but I'm also wondering if they're celebrating a safe return, or providing encouragement for a new launch about to happen.

With all of the progression of digital photography, nothing beats a vintage photo with a story. I would love to blow this photo up and do an entire wall mural with it in a quirky Manhattan restaurant.

Have a great week!

love y'all!


Sunday, October 30, 2011

Design Star 5

"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times" haha

I won't bore you with reflection from Design Star Season 5 (because that's old news). But, I will say that with all of the "flack" that Mark Burnett Productions took for the lack of design in our season, I'd say that it is pretty obvious that they have mastered the art of casting.

We're up to 4 out of 12 who have successfully locked in their own shows! Which is unheard of in season's past. I was excited to see Todd Davis from Season 2 lock in a show on HGTV, but have been even more ecstatic to watch my new friends (via design star) find their own tv success so quickly!

After Design Star, I honestly told myself that the BEST thing I gained from the show was the relationships that I created (both with cast members and production/industry folks). Amongst the cast, tight bonds were created quickly due to extreme stress, crazy situations, and limited resources on a show where your fate "hangs in the balance" each week. Although I left a bit earlier than I expected (and feel like I may have missed out on some great experiences/opportunities), I will say that I am thankful for the experiences I did have and the memories that I was able to make in this "once in a lifetime experience" on HGTV.

Post Design Star, I kept in touch with my new found friends, and have had a blast hanging out and getting to know them in REAL LIFE SITUATIONS.

Turns out, Michael Moeller and I live just blocks away from each other on the Lower East Side in New York and just so happen to attend the same gym, Ludlow Fitness! As we both settled back into "normalcy" and began to pick up new work and new clients, I had the privilege of working with Michael on several projects that included building some custom Capsule Furniture pieces for him. Although he was bummed about coming in second on the show, he was always optimistic about it and I KNEW WITHOUT A DOUBT that he had the personality and the design savvy to be a successful t.v. host. Outside of work, we have enjoyed house parties and great brunches in our neighborhood! My wife, Dasha, and I always look forward to our next adventure with Michael and his boyfriend, Tobin! A few months ago I was excited to hear from Michael that he and Nina Ferrer (also from Season 5 of Design Star) had landed their own show, Clean House New York, on Style Network!

It is so exciting to see Michael and Nina working and laughing together on Clean House New York. It's sort of like a "flashback" to the final challenge on Design Star. Obviously Style Network saw an element and excitement between these two that they love. They are seriously two peas in a pod and are individually and collectively SO talented! I see a bright future for this new show and for each of them as VIBRANT personalities on such a major network like


We all know the beloved Emily Henderson who actually WON Design Star Season 5! Her show, "Secrets from a Stylist" has received wonderful reviews and enjoyed two very successful seasons on HGTV. I'm sure Secrets from a Stylist is headed for another 4 or 5! Emily, who is as cute and quirky in person as she is on TV, graciously invited me to be on her show in the spring and build a custom coffee table for one of her clients. If you missed it, you can watch the full episode below:

I had a blast spending time with her both on screen and off. She SERIOUSLY is the biggest multi-tasker and craziest work-aholic I know and I'm certain it's one of the many reasons that she will continue to be successful in the industry. Literally every morning while she is getting her make-up done or anytime she has downtime from the show, she is on her Mac doing research, e-mailing, or updating her very successful blog, Style by Emily Henderson!

The good news too is that I guess I did a good enough job last time I was in L.A. to be invited back! Haha Emily had me back to build some custom furniture pieces that you will see soon in her 1 hour Christmas Special on HGTV. This trip was even more fun. Not only did I get to hang with Em, but I had a blast getting to know her #1 sidekick Orlando as well. He has such a great sense of snarky humor and is the perfect yin to Emily's yang.

I also love Emily's bio on because the way she was raised sounds IDENTICAL to how I grew up in Arkansas!

And the contestant behind door #4- CASEY NOBLE!

I have to say that I dig Casey's bold shift from high-end hospitality design to host of "Design on a Dime." She is a very educated designer, who believe it or not worked with Michael Moeller in the hospitality industry back in the day before they each started their own respective and very successful design businesses on opposite coasts. Casey's expertise will help bring new life to the classic HGTV show Design on a Dime, which I actually used to like as a youngster, but realized was a bit cheesy as I got older.

I have enjoyed getting to know Casey since Design Star too. I stayed with her when I was out in L.A. in the spring doing some work for the Oscars. Her and her husband Peter were great hosts and have quite a stylish home full of a few "design on a dime" features of their own! Casey's sense of humor is sly, but addictive. She instantly became the sister I never had, and when we weren't sarcastically bickering back and forth, we had a good time acting like 5 year olds who needed to be put in a cage. My most recent visit out to L.A. to be on Emily's show sparked a visit to Casey's house where I earned the nickname "screen door" which I'll explain in further detail to anyone who wants to listen. haha

Casey has visited New York quite a few times since our crazy experience together and each time is more exciting than the last. Hanging out with her and Michael together is about as close as I think I can get to an insane asylum without actually checking in! lol j/k y'all... I love ya! Here's a pic of one of our fun nights out in NYC!

I see Casey doing very well with her show and was excited to see snippets of her wonderful personality on the Season Premiere of Design on a Dime last night. The more they capture of the real Casey, the more America will continue to fall in love with her... I just wish she was easier to look-at! haha

I didn't find a link to a teaser or an actual episode of Casey's new show "Design on a Dime", but I did have a great time reminiscing and watching this video of her after she was kicked off of Design Star. It looks like she learned from her experience pretty quickly and has been doing some "on camera practicing" since, b/c she did a great job last night in the premiere. Congrats Case!

All in all, I can't help but smile from ear to ear when I watch each of my respective Design Star mates on their shows. Knowing them prior to their success and watching them blossom into successful TV show hosts is fun to witness. Regardless of their success, I feel blessed to know each of them and know that we will remain friends for a long time!

As far as advice for others, keep doing what you love and chasing your own respective dreams... Life is short and the opportunities that await you are countless!

Love y'all,


Arkansas Life Magazine

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

The Northern Lights

I am sad I didn't witness this because I'm in Arkansas right now, but Brian Emfinger did us all a favor and captured this phenomenal occurance in a time lapse video in Ozark, AR last night.

Here's the article from the LA Times-

The time-lapse video above was taken by Brian Emfinger in Ozark, Ark.

In fact, the sky-watching website reports that the northern lights were seen or photographed in more than half of the nation's states.


Usually the northern lights, also known as the aurora borealis, are visible only at far north latitudes — such as those in Canada and Alaska.

But this week, sky-watchers in the southern latitudes got lucky. What's known as a coronal mass ejection from the sun apparently hit Earth at about 2 p.m. EDT, which disturbed the Earth's magnetic field, which in turn caused the lights to migrate farther south than normal.

"When these charged particles [from the ejection] go by our own magnetic field, it's like dumping gasoline on a fire," Joe Kunches, a space scientist with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, said in an interview with The Times. "Everything gets a lot hotter."

And that translates into a gorgeous aurora display that drips over the Canadian border and down into the continental United States.

Still, Kunches said, it is highly unusual for the northern lights to venture as far south as Arkansas.

"Why did we get so lucky in the United States to see these? It wasn't that the disturbance was all that strong," he said, "maybe the timing was just right for the western hemisphere. There were clear skies in the middle of the country, and it was just our lucky night as it were."

And here's the best news of all: The sun is expected to shoot an increasing amount of CMEs out in the next several years as solar flare season heats up. So if you missed this display, perhaps you'll be able to see another one sometime soon.


Love y'all!


Monday, October 24, 2011

Scandinavian Style

It's all over the place and I have to say I love it! Scandinavian Style is simple, warm, comfortable, and rustic, which is MY DESIGN to the core!

WELCOME SCANDINAVIA... please never leave us, pretty please!

Love y'all! Happy Tuesday.


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Rustic Industrial Library

The interior inspiration for today is this amazing rustic industrial library in the Netherlands.

Ahhh.... to curl up and read a book in this space.

Photo via Jan Verlinde.

Love y'all!


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Creature Creation

This is blowing my mind right now! Inspirational indeed.

Monday, October 10, 2011

warehouse 54

So my brother, TLee, and his girlfriend, Heidi, have been HARD AT IT back home in Arkansas. They have acquired a warehouse space that is quite a little gem, just off of the beaten path, but close to downtown Springdale. The building is an old strawberry warehouse that was turned into a shipping dock for Central Freight Company in the 1970's. The long narrow structure is only 20 feet wide, but it is 160 feet long with 7 dock doors! For the first few weeks, clean-up was the task at hand. But, things are moving right along and they're starting to acquire and sell vintage items and antiques out of the newly deemed "warehouse 54". TLee says the name is a tribute to the history of the building because they were told the structure was built in 1954. But, after cleaning the place up, he also says the beams inside tell a much different story. Maybe older reclaimed beams from another structure were used to erect this building in 1954, or perhaps it is actually much older than the documents suggest. Either way, it's a wonderful building with a lot of character and history that deserves to be cherished!

I'm proud of all the hard work TLee and Heidi have invested into their new "venture". They both have good jobs and work full-time, but they've dedicated much of their free time and weekends to getting warehouse 54 off of the ground!

An appreciation for vintage goods and antiques is MOST DEFINITELY a Faires trait. Thanks to our mother and father who raised us in an old farmhouse where the collected decor looked more like a flea market! And if our house looked that way, you can imagine what the barn out back looked like! I think some of my earliest memories involve digging through the rubble to re-organize the rubble. In fact, TLee had a bout with the antique reel lawn mower and my youngest brother Ben one year (I think we were 4, 5, and 6 at the time... bless my mom's "pea-pickin' heart"). Well, unfortunately in the tug-o-war, Ben came up missing the tip of his pinky finger! The story gets pretty gruesome after that, but basically ended with mom passing out, dad taking care of mom, and the neighbor having to drive all of us to the hospital! haha Anyways, sorry for the tangent, but knowing how we were raised will give you an idea of:

a. why we're all a bit crazy
b. why we love and appreciate old things so much.

Anywho, check out these great photos of some of the vintage items offered at warehouse 54!

That's Tlee's dog, Chap, he's always been quite handsome, but I'm digging the grey mustache he's acquired in his old age!

With the downtown area itching to "turn-around", this is just the type of artistic creativity and business that needs to happen to revive the area. I'm excited to see a lot of new things happening in Springdale and look forward to watching the culture evolve downtown.

As far as warehouse 54 goes, I am hoping to feature some of their vintage finds on lonesome whistler soon! In the meantime, visit their facebook page. Let me know if you see something you want and I'll try to get you my family discount!

Have a terrific week.

Love y'all!