Let me give you some background. My name is Jamie & I’m originally from the beautiful state of Connecticut. Nope, no yacht’s, no horses, just a big, Italian family and an early passion for all things design. I’m on record of telling my grandmother at age 4 that her pillows didn’t match her sofa… not my best days since after recent review of pictures from that time, they were perfect. In fact, today I would select them. Yeah, weird kid but I guess I turned out okay. Ha!
When I was 5 years old, my parents bought a 1902 Dutch Colonial in our town, 2 blocks from the beach. That was the one, single good thing about this disaster. The house was mere months from condemnation and no one had even been inside in years. The neighbors and owners showed my parents the house & they were sold. Later that day, my parents took my grandmother on a tour and she cried upon entering. DISASTER this house was. An absolute one at that. The picture on the left is the house in it’s current state, from what I can see, it’s a disaster. Again.
Then they started. Walls came down, beams went up in their place. Hardwoods were refinished, tile was laid. Wallpaper was stripped, walls were painted. Original woodwork was restored & light fixtures were installed. Window treatments were hung and furniture was bought. There we had it: 2 years later, it was brand new with all of it’s original character enhanced. You would think between ages 5-7 I would have no recollection nor any care to know what was going on but no, I was enamored. From there, I knew that some day I would be in this field.
So we moved, to South Carolina. Into a brand new house. Initially I was excited since it was brand new. We chose paint colors, got new furniture but I constantly felt like it needed something more. I painted and repainted rooms until I couldn’t see straight! It drove me insane. To this day, I’ll never own a new home unless it’s built by me from start to finish, I simply can’t live with others selections regardless of how good they are. This picture is the house in it’s current state. Side note: the shutters were added later which is why they are only on the first floor, shutters don’t fit on those windows!
Changed. My. Life.
I was a sophomore in high school when I realized that I wanted to be an Interior Designer and I wanted to be on Trading Spaces. So. Freaking. Bad. I could taste it! I actually signed my parents & neighbors up to be on the show but never completely followed through so you know how that worked… I even met Edward Walker at our local Lowes store when they were in town. I was obsessed. Too bad it was canceled before I even started college.
All of that aside, I always have HGTV. I will apply for Design Star one of these days. It’ll happen.
So college. The Art Institute of Charlotte. Such amazing professors that inspired & made it all make sense. But then, like most students, I kind of lost myself in what the teachers were telling me. I loved it & still do but my style got a little lost in the shuffle because of some of the things I was learning. Thank God I’ve gotten over that. I think it happens to everyone, you hear things like: “this is how it’s done” or “in the industry we do this.” Well in MY industry, this is how I’m doing things. I refuse to keep my portion of this industry in the box. I’m so over it. So here it goes…
I had my momentary lapses of Ed Hardy & the like but I always come back. Now you’re wondering, what the hell does this have to do with Interiors? To me: everything.
While I love trends & DIE every time I look at the color forecasts, I can’t help but go back to my roots. Classic styles with some insane, modern juxtaposition. Take for instance, my bedroom. My walls are navy – the Prep color. My floors are original to the house, my dresser is covered in vintage fashion ads, book covers, random clothing tags from vineyard vines & J. Crew but then a huge True Religion tag right in the middle. That is me. Then, I have a sitting area with a vintage Eames molded plastic chair & a pickled green side table that’s super traditional. Across the room from that sits an old (I can’t even pretend it’s vintage but I love it) luggage rack & atop that sits my circa 2010 Vuitton keepall. Yes, why not keep it out & on display? Then original artwork from my best friend, Michelle Loughran (look her up, she’s amazing!) hangs on one wall, while a framed Yale-Harvard football program from 1922 hangs on the opposite wall. Overall, it’s a preppy, nautical, modern, collected mess but somehow, to me, it all works so well together!
I’m not trying to blow smoke up my own ass, trust me. I’m just stating that until recently I had no idea that the Prep world or as Shep & Ian of vineyard vines would say, “The Good Life” could co-exist with interiors.
Now your just overwhelmed or you’ve stopped reading my rambling. I can’t say I blame you but I’m getting to a point.
This blog is going to be based on my likes & dislikes and generally focused on my love for Preppiness & Interior Design & how they play with each other so well.
I promise not to bore you with anything this long ever again. If I could have written papers in school this quickly & with as much passion, I probably would have done better…
Please enjoy & set sail because the first, real post is coming soon!