The A-Ha moment is one of clarity. It is a defining moment when you gain real wisdom that can be used to change your life. This moment can be inspiring, surprising, original, deeply personal and worth sharing. It often arises when there is an obstacle that needs to be turned into an opportunity.
Last week at Blogfest 2012, the editors from House Beautiful encouraged us to share an A-Ha moment from our design work. Up and coming designers Michael Herold, Jill Goldberg, and John Call shared their A-Ha moments with the group and challenged us to do the same.
My A-Ha moment came while working on the Pink House, a unique respite for breast cancer survivors and the Carolina Breast Friends organization. The Pink House serves breast cancer survivors in numerous ways: Wellness Education, Library and Computer Research Center, Fitness and Nutrition Centers, Self-Image Services, Arts & Crafts Workshops, and Counseling Services.
When I first saw the house, it was a beautiful historic home that had recently been renovated, but there were no funds to furnish the interior. What seemed like an insurmountable obstacle at the time turned into the most wonderful and fulfilling opportunity.
|The Living Room
Upholstery from Charles Stewart
|The Living Room
Accessories donated by Circa Interiors and Antiques
The organization wanted us to create a sophisticated, calming and feminine atmosphere. This was a haven where women would come together for fellowship, support and inspiration.
|The Living Room
Re-upholstery donated by Design Services, Inc.
Albert Hadley said, “Decorating is not about making stage sets,…it’s really about creating a quality of life, a beauty that nourishes the soul.” We wanted the survivors that entered this space to feel like their spirits had been lifted and their souls nourished.
|Painting donated by Kate Long Stevenson
in honor of her friend Neil Maddux Miller
We found several pieces at local flea markets and tag sales. With some refinishing, new paint and re- upholstery, we were able to turn others people’s cast off furnishings into beautiful pieces for the Pink House.
Window Treatments donated by
Custom Window Treatments
|The Sun Room
Carpet donated by Stark
When we first began this project, I honestly did not know if we would be able to pull it together. We had several different rooms that needed to flow together along with random assortment of found items and upholstery that needed some unifying element. I finally understood the expression “making a silk purse out of a sow’s ear!” Fortunately, we ended up with our A-Ha moment and we were all thrilled with the final product.
Renovations donated by J.E. Dunn Construction
|Yours truly with Newell Turner, Editor in Chief of House Beautiful
and Beth Greene, Executive Vice President of Marketing and Strategic Branding
for Kravet, Lee Jofa and Brusnchwig & Fils
In addition to the Evening Under the Palms party that I detailed in my last post, there are many more Palm Beach-inspired events to experience during the Room to Bloom Celebration. All proceeds from the events enable the Mint Museum to enhance its educational programs and acquire new works of art for the permanent collection. Celerie Kemble, noted interior designer, author, and Palm Beach native, is the keynote speaker at the Decorative Arts Symposium. If you are unable to attend the Symposium, there are two other ways to meet this talented and celebrated designer. Celerie will be doing a book signing at Room to Bloom sponsor Circa Interiors and Antiques on Wednesday, April 25th from 2:00-3:30.
Celerie’s latest book is a must have for any design library. Please see below for the publisher’s book review:
“Black and white décor is at once dramatic and understated, modern and classic, apparent in the work of iconic designers such as Dorothy Draper and Madeleine Castaing but just as present in design today. And the inspiration is all around us—from nature (a zebra’s stripes, tree trunks rising from drifts of snow) to old Hollywood movies and fashion to black-and-white photography and patterns we encounter in our everyday lives (crossword puzzles and the pages of our favorite novels).
In Black and White (and a Bit in Between), acclaimed interior designer Celerie Kemble trades in her signature vivid palette for this iconic aesthetic, highlighting the black and white work of design stars and peers, including Bunny Williams, Thomas O’Brien, Mary McDonald, Victoria Hagan, Mark Hampton, Delphine Krakoff, Brad Ford, Philip Gorrivan, Carrier and Co., and Miles Redd, and welcoming you into more than 100 spaces in every imaginable aesthetic. Woven throughout are her witty observations and expert advice on choosing the best paints and finishes, adding patterns and accessories, building an entire room scheme based on inspiration found in nature, collecting black and white objects, and even choosing the perfect accent colors. With more than 350 gorgeous color photographs, this is a vividly photographed celebration of a timeless scheme, infused with inspirational tips, glimpses into showstopping homes, and proof that a limited palette is anything but.”
The last opportunity to meet Celerie Kemble will be at The CommenceMINT Party on Wednesday, April 25 from 6:30-9:00pm. Wells Fargo Private Bank is the Presenting Sponsor for the evening which will be held in the beautiful home and gardens of Kelly and Rick Hopkins. Other sponsors include Allen Tate, Cummins Atlantic, Hubert Whitlock Builders, The Morgan Landscape Group, and The Triad Foundation.