While I’m 110% in love with my house, I also know that it’s probably not my forever home. Sometime in the next few decades I really want the experience of building from the ground up. And while my architectural taste runs the gamut, lately I find myself really drawn to a-frames and their steeply angled rooflines and modern yet cozy vibe.
via Design Milk
via Hi Consumption
Posted In house and home, living, round up, series
I want to get up close and personal with Laura Moriarty’s sculptural paintings to see what each of those lovely layers is all about. The geological references are apparent, but I’ll let Laura explain her process.
Layers of color form the strata of a methodology in which the immediacy of the hand can translate a sense of deep time. Working and reworking molten, richly pigmented beeswax, I build each painting/object through a slow, simple yet strenuous physical engagement, which often becomes a metaphor for the ephemerality of life and civilization.
Posted In create, sculpture
While I’ve shared plenty on the updates of the interior of my old, partially-flipped house, there hasn’t been nearly as much done on the exterior. Why? Simply put it’s more intimidating. But back in January I vowed that this is the year that things would get done, and I’ve started off by partnering with Mid-America to replace and add shutters to the front of my home. Mid-America is a leading manufacturer of siding accessories, and they also offer the largest selection of exterior home products in the industry, so I knew both me and my house were in the right hands.
Prior to now only one window had shutters of any kind, the large one on the first floor, front and center and a little to the left. They were wooden, measured incorrectly, and too short. The attic windows looked fine as they’re a more interesting design and flanked by shaker wood siding, but the trio on the second floor just looked… sad.
But no longer! From the street it looks like my house got a facelift. The good kind.
Every window was measured correctly this go around and the shutters installed like a dream with just a drill, screwdriver, and hammer. Mid-America offers a wide range of shutter styles and colors, all low maintenance with no painting required. They’re impervious to moisture and insects, which is something I highly value as the owner of a house that’s 117 years old, and made right here in the United States. I chose their straight top all louver shutter in black for all four windows and couldn’t be happier with the quality or end result.
On the list for 2017:
• landscape the small front yard, dispose of one hundred river rocks
• replace the porch light fixture with something more modern
• strip and paint back deck
• sand and repaint porch swing
• build wooden porch up to door height, railing, stairs
• have slate roof repaired
• landscape backyard
• replace porch roof support columns with a sleeker design
Get a load of the full-on before and after! Looking back the house seemed so incomplete without Mid-America’s shutters. Eventually I’d love to add sets to the windows on the back and east-facing sides for the full effect, but until then I can’t help but smile each time I pull into my driveway. Onto the next project!
This post sponsored by Mid-America. All words and opinions are my own, as always. Thank you for supporting the brands that help keep Design Crush creating fresh content!Posted In behind the scenes, house and home, living, my house, outdoors, sponsored post
If you’re feeling drained from this week – or this year – Sam Chirnside‘s psychedelic paintings might be just the thing to boost your energy levels. The Berlin-based artist, designer, and creative director mainly uses oils to create these trippy pieces that are equally at home on album covers or a gallery wall.
Posted In create, painting
The to-do list for my home is a mile long, but near the top is the addition of a pergola. If you’re unfamiliar, a pergola is an architectural element originally used in ancient Greece and Rome to better define an outdoor space that’s gaining momentum in the current day. It usually consists of parallel colonnades that support an open roof of girders and cross rafters.
Pergolas are great privacy and shade solutions because, really, there are no rules. They can be built out of wood or steel, with a traditional or modern design or somewhere in between. Add fabric panels to the sides for additional privacy, let vining plants climb up to and cover the roof, add solar panels, or top it off with a plexiglas covering for protection from the rain. Your pergola can be freestanding in the middle of the backyard or built on top of a porch or deck, or maybe you’d just like to build one over your old concrete patio. See? Not many rules here.
I’d like mine to be similar to the second one below, but the wood painted white instead of black to keep the heat to a minimum during summer. Honeysuckle would climb all four colonnades and wind around the girders where it would mingle with strands of lights with edison bulbs. I’d have a few planter boxes on one or two of the sides that would blend in, and maybe a canvas tarp that could be attached to the four corners for shade on especially hot days.
But I haven’t put much thought into it.
Posted In house and home, living, outdoors, round up, series
I’m beyond ready for my local farmers market to open, and Hargreaves + Levin‘s Food Scans series is making me even hungrier for all that fresh picked produce. All twelve pieces are arranged in order of month, showcasing the beauty of each’s seasonal harvest by placing fruits and vegetables on a scanner in symmetrical designs.
Posted In create, mixed media
Ekaterina Popova‘s paintings centered around the idea of home, and the unmade beds that often find themselves beneath her brush, have me thinking about sultry summer nights and the warm spring ones we’ve already had that left me throwing off the covers. Popova references old photographs, images, magazine cutouts, and books that remind her of her old life in Russia to create these fictitious places that will inevitable make you feel something.
Posted In create, painting
Just like clockwork, I filed for my yearly tax extension yesterday.
See, I have a bit of an admission to make which is that I really hate numbers and money or any combination of the two. Design Crush has been a business for nearly ten years and an LLC for more than half of that, and I’m honestly just getting a hold on my books now. It’s always felt extremely overwhelming to me, and so I’ve never made the time to fully understand and grasp what was going on behind the scenes. Money in the bank? Great. Set aside enough of that payment for taxes? Done. And that’s basically the extent of what my plan has been until this year.
Accounting got to the point of being a constant source of stress, a point of mental wellness that needed addressing. So I reached out to FreshBooks after sitting in on one of their workshops, they made accounting seem both easy to tackle and far less overwhelming than it had up until this point.
I’ve teamed up with FreshBooks to bring you the story of my journey this year as I tackle the financial side of Design Crush – and what better time to start than Tax Day?
Let’s start from the beginning.
When I first logged into my free one month trial I was immediately impressed by the clean layout. One thing that’s always kept me away from other accounting software is the sheer amount of information being thrown my way visually. FreshBooks was actually designed to be simple to use for the self-employed and easy to navigate, and that’s actually what it is. It became apparent – quickly – that I was about to be far more streamlined as a business as soon as I familiarized myself with the system. (On average users save 16 hours per month!)
I played around backlogging invoices from January 2017 to the present, marking the paid ones off and entering the information of the brands I work with most often for future billing. FreshBooks helps you to create a professional looking invoice that includes your logo, as well as sends out reminders when one goes overdue – basically taking you out of the role as the bad guy. (I love this.) You can even personalize a thank you message that goes out once each invoice is paid. Now this feature is like magic to me, you can set up your account up to accept credit cards! *mind explodes* If you’d like to dig even deeper you can add additional charges for late payments and request deposits from clients. Everything can be automated, making invoicing as painless as humanly possible.
Invoicing features: customization, payment reminders, automatic late fees, accept credit cards, recurring invoices, flexible due dates, handle received invoices, discounts, deposit requests, preview before sending, multi-currency billing, multi-language invoices, duplicate invoices, automatic tax calculations
Next thing, I photographed receipts and uploaded them to mark as expenses. Being a visually-driven person, it really helps that I’m able to see both the actual receipt as well as the file in FreshBooks. Nearly all of the functions include a line graph spelling things out for those of us who comprehend information better in that form. In this case I can tell immediately how much I’ve been spending and how profitable Design Crush is at any moment. Goodbye shoebox of receipts and manual entry! My accountant is already thanking you because he won’t be receiving a handwritten list for my 2016 taxes. *cringe*
Expense features: receipt attachments, tax-friendly categories, easy to read summaries, remembered vendors, multi-currency tracking, easily editable
So, this is the start of my journey. I’m looking forward to sharing more of what I learn along the way as I step out of my comfort zone and tackle this neglected area of Design Crush. If you have any questions about FreshBooks I’d love to try and help get answers for you from their award-winning rockstars in customer service. In the meantime, you can sign up for a free monthlong trial right here!
This post sponsored by FreshBooks. All words and opinions are my own, as always. Thank you for supporting the brands that help keep Design Crush creating fresh content!Posted In behind the scenes, living, office, sponsored post