Field Trip!

One of the things I love to do when faced with free time (heh heh) in New York City is just to walk. There are so many great things out in the open, and yet so many hidden treasures.

Last night I found myself in the Village, with about 15 minutes to kill before meeting a client for dinner. So, I took a walk around the block (probably could have worn more sensible shoes... oh, who am I kidding? Do I even own sensible shoes??!), and here's some snapshots of what I came across:

How great is the iron type at the top of the gate? I love it's clearly handmade simplicity. I would live here, just based on that type (I pick a lot of things out based on type that I like, which is probably why it's a good thing that my partner in crime has some say in things like where we live. Because he would not base that decision on type).

St. Vincent's, all boarded up. This made me sad, but right at the end of the block was an elementary school, and I could hear the choir practicing as I walked by--which immediately cheered me up. I would have stayed to listen if it didn't make me look completely creepy.

I love this elephant + castle font. I don't particularly care for the illustration, but nice use of type. This was a bar, btw, and yes, I would totally go here.

This chair from Elizabeth Bauer was clearly made for a queen. My girls--queens themselves--would adore this.

Oh, Jonathan Adler. I couldn't love this desk any more, I don't think. But at a bazillion dollars, it's just a hair out of my price range.

I can't resist an orange window. Or orange accessories. Or Jonathan Adler, for that matter.

Folks, this was just a one-block radius of New York--can you even imagine what I could do in a day?? One of these days, I will find the time to take my camera into the city and just start walking.


Notes from an Intern

Hey readers, it's the intern here. Usually I like to send my messages either by voice, or by crayon--but hey, let's embrace new technology. Anyway, I've got to learn how to work a computer some time, right? Why not now?

Anywho. Since I've pretty much hijacked the studio, I figured why not take over the blog as well. I talked to Mommy--er, the boss--and she thought a day in the life of a traciedesigns intern blog post was a great idea, especially since she's pretty busy these days balancing something called "work" with entertaining me. Whatever "work" is...

We get to the office shortly after 8:30, and at this point I demand to watch a movie. Something by Pixar, preferably--they are THE BOMB when if comes to animation.

Some time mid-morning, we go out for what the boss calls "fresh air." I don't know what fresh air is, but it usually involves me getting pushed around in the stroller. I like to sing really loud; and usually singing loudly is frowned upon in the office--especially when the boss is on the phone. I can sing all I want in my stroller, so I really like fresh air.

11:30 is TEAM UMIZOOMI time! Team UmiZoomi is my favorite show these days. I prefer to watch it start to finish, with no interruptions. Seriously. Do NOT talk to me during Team UmiZoomi time.

After Team Umizoomi is lunch time--another favorite time of mine. After lunch, the boss says she does more of that "work" stuff while I nap. I still have no clue what work is, but I'm pretty glad I get to sleep through it.

When I wake up from my nap, usually my sisters--the other interns--are home. At this point, the boss gives me some sort of intern-related task, like play Barbies (which I am all to happy to do). The other interns are doing something called "homework"--again with the work word!

Anywho. That's what a day as an intern in the traciedesigns office is like. Not too bad of a life, if you ask me (except for the whole singing thing. There DEFINITELY needs to be more loud singing in that office).

xoxo, the intern


I love lamp.

I'm going to have to warn you folks: traciedesigns is about to take a very sharp turn towards interior design for a while. See, renovations are humming along nicely (this week, they mentioned the P word: PAINT. As in, we're going to PAINT THESE PRETTY WALLS WE PUT UP. Do I sound excited about this? Just a tad).

Anywho. I am so very fortunate to be working with my awesomer-by-the-minute-friend Catherine Avery (of Avery Design Interiors) and she. is. the. bomb. This weekend, she actually assigned us homework--remember that show Trading Spaces? It was very Trading Spaces of her. Our assignment was to pick up samples of the colors for each room upstairs, and paint a big piece of posterboard, and hang it in the room to be painted that color.

Problem was, we didn't have any clue what color to paint our bedroom--because we had no bedding. I searched the internet. I searched Fairfield County high and low. And where did I finally end up finding out bedding? Homegoods. But--more importantly--what else did I find at Homegoods?


Readers, I think it's safe to say that I had a lamp-gasm right there in the middle of the store. Look at these lamps! Now granted, I'm not one for the printed shades... but slap another plain white one on there, and voila!

Seriously, I never thought I would quote Brick Tamland, like, ever; but I. Love. Lamp.

Oh, and Catherine's whole paint on the posterboard on the wall? Brills. We nixed a potential color for one of the girl's rooms, and lightened ours by a shade.

And our Homegoods comforter? The more I have it, the more I love it. I CAN'T WAIT to post pics of the real deal room all finished and put together.

In the meantime, I'll be over here drooling over lamps.


Mother Nature's cruel joke

Holy cow, Mother Nature is cruel, but beautiful sometimes.

Here's a great time lapse video of Eyjafjallajökull's eruption in Iceland last month. Says photographer Sean Stiegemeier:

So I saw all of these mediocre pictures of that volcano in Iceland nobody can pronounce the name of, so I figured I should go and do better. But the flights to get over took forever as expected (somewhat). 4 days after leaving I finally made it, but the weather was terrible for another 4. Just before leaving it got pretty good for about a day and a half and this is what I managed to get.


Iceland, Eyjafjallajökull - May 1st and 2nd, 2010 from Sean Stiegemeier on Vimeo.

Originally seen on PetaPixel.



So unfortunately, this week, my intern was back. Most people don't refer to an intern as unfortunate, but in my situation, my intern is 2. And this week, she had a stomach bug. That's a whole lot of unfortunate.

Oh, she tried to make it look like she was working...

But she always had her eye out for me,

And whenever she thought I wasn't looking, this would happen:

See, nobody told her that that is NOT graphic designer Barbie, so she made no contribution whatsoever to my workload this week.

However, I can happily report that the intern is feeling much, MUCH better and will report back to her day job tomorrow. So starting tomorrow, I will be intern-less.

And, she tells me, she'll be taking her Barbies with her.


Literally running for life

This year I'm so excited to be participating in my first Relay for Life. For those not in the know, Relay for Life is a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society:

The American Cancer Society Relay For Life is a life-changing event that gives everyone in communities across the globe a chance to celebrate the lives of people who have battled cancer, remember loved ones lost, and fight back against the disease. At Relay, teams of people camp out at a local high school, park, or fairground and take turns walking or running around a track or path. Each team is asked to have a representative on the track at all times during the event. Because cancer never sleeps, Relays are overnight events up to 24 hours in length.

I know both survivors, and people who--unfortunately--have succumbed to this terrible disease; including both of my grandmothers. It's scary for me to think that we've come so far in modern medicine, however, we have yet to find a cure for a disease that takes so many lives each year. I'm not one to use my blog/social media to go around asking for money--but I feel really strongly about this cause.

Won't you please support my efforts in Relay for Life? Make a donation to my team here.

Thank you so much; not just from me, but from every person touched by cancer.

Panic! At the Design Studio

You know how sometimes, you wake up in the morning, and you're all OH. EM. GEE. I AM SO STRESSED OUT. And then the stress just gets to you, and it builds. Like, a lot. And by 10AM you've convinced yourself that you are completely insane for running your own business, and what on earth are you going to do there is so much stuff to be done, and my God you are a fool for not working at all last night.

Then, you start with the little things on your list. Knock a couple of those off. Then maybe you get a medium sized thing just about done before 5:00 rolls around. Then you realize it's Friday, and your to do list is looking significantly less intimidating, and oh yeah, you have a date with your husband in a few hours.

Maybe then you'll plan to work for a few hours this weekend, get a jump start on next week.

And then you'll realize that your clients are not all running for the hills. Things aren't so bad. In fact, things are actually pretty good. Then you smile to yourself and think, Man, I am so LUCKY to have my own business.

Because this is exactly how I felt on Friday.

Anyone else? Bueller?


What Not to Wear: traciedesigns edition

OK, let's face it: I've always been into art and fashion. At one time in my life--in grade school--these paths crossed, and I spent most of recess not running around like the other kids, but sitting outside with my back against the wall designing outfits. I had a whole composition book filled with them (God, I wish I had kept that!).

Of course, that phase didn't last much past the 5th grade. And while I'm not designing my own clothes, I still have a big interest in fashion--I think, for a work at home mom, I can be pretty stylish (if I do say so myself).

Well that thought lasted up until about yesterday at 2:00.

Because yesterday, I had a meeting with a potential new client--a fashion designer who is looking to get back into the biz--and let me tell you, yesterday, in my J. Crew cargo pants, what I thought was a great shirt, and what I thought were even better sparkly sandals (sidebar: I love me some sparkly shoes these days!), I have never felt less fashionable in my life.

Because remember Laura Bennett, from Project Runway? She may as well have opened the door to greet me the other day. Black symmetrical flow-y, awesome top, black leggings, black loafers that I could sell to put one of the kids through college. Thrown together fabulousness.

I, on the other hand, felt like a prime candidate for What Not to Wear: Work at Home mom edition.

Don't get me wrong, the potential new client said or did NOTHING to make me feel like that (well, except for being fabulous); and also, I am SUPER WAY EXCITED to work on this project because she showed me some sketches and fabric samples yesterday, and one word comes to mind: drool.

Definitely not work at home mom apparel. But definitely apparel that work at home moms can wear when they go out for a night on the town and want others--men and women alike--to drool over them.

So, note to self when meeting this woman again: less J. Crew, more Barneys. I wonder if this is becoming a write-off...