BOO YOU GUYS!

Whoa Nelly! This past year has been bonkers. We went to the A-Frame for the summer, had a wedding, my business took off when I got back, and now my husband is filming a television show in LA all summer. WHA?!

One of the more important developments in my life was forming an Accountability Club with 2 of my dearest self-employed friends in which we tell each other all the stuff we should do for our businesses that we can't seem to tell ourselves, like make a f***ing business card already. Getting out of my own head (and the sticky web of doubt and loathing in there) has forced me to work and advocate on my own behalf more in the last 3 months then in the last 3 years. 

So in that spirit, here is my renovated website. And a blog post.  And a new section devoted to my home with pictures taken by the wonderful Esteban Cortez. LET'S DO THIS.

Big thanks to StoryHouse Creative and Wallis Williams Design for making the site so awesome!

 

 

Posted
AuthorSarah Reid

So, I have this client. He's 4 and he's the cutest. There's something about designing for a cute and sweet kid; it turns on some kind of auntie/maternal energy that seeps into my work and gives it an extra shot of meaning. See how cute he is?

 Snow? What is this stuff? 

Snow? What is this stuff? 

 This is his blankie. It is destroyed with love.

This is his blankie. It is destroyed with love.

Designing for kids is a totally different ballgame (here come the sports metaphors! He loves sports). It drives me nuts when I see designers spend a lot of other people's money on things that a kid will hate in 3-4 years: literal themey stuff like Dinosaurs! Pirates! Princesses!, furniture that can't grow with them (size wise but also in function; multi-use furniture is the way to go), and infantilizing decor (let's be honest, pastel cuddly stuff is for parents, not babies). 

Jake is a sports fanatic. Like, he could rival my most rabid Red Sox fans friends on any given day, and that is saying a lot. What I love about his fandom is how un-jock, un-bro it is. He loves to dress up in his team jerseys, changing them out several times in an hour, he watches televised softball games and can discuss the differences in pitching between it and baseball, when we play catch it is with seriousness and purpose, AND he still sucks his thumb while cuddling with his blankie. I wanted to design his room to honor of all of these things without making it look like a literal recreation of a locker room or what have you. However, it couldn't be so subtle that Jake didn't see the sportsyness in his new room as 4 year olds are not known for their comprehension of subtlety and he definitely wanted a sportsy room.

When I met him, Jake's room was fine. It had the basics, a furniture arrangement that made the room feel smaller than it is and no finesse. His parents were hilariously upfront about how much they don't know about setting up a room, something I appreciate in clients more than anything. Knowing what you don't know is the best thing to know. 

We started with the floor plan. The first problem was the bed placement. Having a twin bed in a 10 x 12 room jut out into the middle of the floor obstructed traffic flow and divided the room into two weird spaces that didn't function well, especially for a kid. Adults like to have space on both sides of the bed but kids don't need it, and in fact they like closed-in spaces that feel less exposed (think forts, bunkbeds, etc.)

IMG_7427.jpg

His parents wanted to keep what furniture we could, so we settled on the bed and dresser, storing or donating everything else. We started the project with a purge (always purge before making concrete floor and decor plans so you know what storage you actually need, and because it feels good). We hired painters to paint, ordered things, I hunted for things in thrift stores and flea markets, and over the course of a weekend in which I kicked them out of their house (have I expressed my love for these people enough to you? do you get how much I love this family?) I went about making Jake's room sportstastic.

When I had presented Jake's parents with rug options I was SO GLAD when they both liked this rag rug (it's even better in person). I wanted Jake's room to feel homey and humble and semi-timeless and a rag rug is the perfect way to do that. They are not precious or expensive, hide dirt and stains like nobodies business, have a very long tradition, and this one was perfectly modern with it's hot pink and yellows woven in occasionally. 

They liked the idea of giving him a reading nook and of lockers for copious storage and beyond that they let me do what I wanted, and what I wanted was patent prints of baseball gear. What a great way to be sportsey while being nerdy and sciencey and historyey! Mounting them on foam board ensures that I will not be responsible for any nighttime earthquake catastrophes too. Whew. I also wanted a chair without it's legs (it came with legs which can be added later when he is taller - the idea came to me when I unloaded the delivery and it had detached legs) so that his reading nook felt super cozy and grounded. 

It took two days to pull it all together and I had so much fun doing it it felt silly to call it a job. I'd do it every day if I could. 

As always, please note that I am not a photographer and that at the end of an install it's hard to care about taking good photos, which is unfortunate but all too true. 

 That purple pillow is so annoying. It was a placeholder for a set that was late in the mail. It's killing me looking at it.

That purple pillow is so annoying. It was a placeholder for a set that was late in the mail. It's killing me looking at it.

 Dear Reading Corner, I would like to take you home and make you mine.

Dear Reading Corner, I would like to take you home and make you mine.

 Turning the bed made it more of a daybed, with sitting space for the whole family.

Turning the bed made it more of a daybed, with sitting space for the whole family.

 All his pals are in his reading nook.

All his pals are in his reading nook.

 I love this Target lamp. The shade is tweed and is so cozy.

I love this Target lamp. The shade is tweed and is so cozy.

 I turned his existing toy box on it's side to make a bench/bookcase.

I turned his existing toy box on it's side to make a bench/bookcase.

 I made a cork board banner and pinned pictures of Jake's favorite players to it.

I made a cork board banner and pinned pictures of Jake's favorite players to it.

 A new mirror helps bounce the light around.

A new mirror helps bounce the light around.

 I took a part a vintage baseball glove and made bows out of it.

I took a part a vintage baseball glove and made bows out of it.

 To show off his trophies I bought some old ones and spray painted them all white.

To show off his trophies I bought some old ones and spray painted them all white.

 I'm seriously considering doing this with all of my furniture. I love being on the ground. Those are his handmade blankies to the left.

I'm seriously considering doing this with all of my furniture. I love being on the ground. Those are his handmade blankies to the left.

 I like to use humor in my vignettes.

I like to use humor in my vignettes.

 I made a scoreboard coat rack out of an old sign and added cork so he can collect his game tickets over time.

I made a scoreboard coat rack out of an old sign and added cork so he can collect his game tickets over time.

 I took off the one ugly handle...

I took off the one ugly handle...

 Friday Night Lights forever.

Friday Night Lights forever.

 Lockers are great magnet boards too! His helmets fit perfectly and this thing doubled the amount of storage in his room!

Lockers are great magnet boards too! His helmets fit perfectly and this thing doubled the amount of storage in his room!

 And made new ones out of the vintage baseball glove!

And made new ones out of the vintage baseball glove!

 I included Carlton Fisk on the banner, of course.

I included Carlton Fisk on the banner, of course.

 You can always count on Etsy. 

You can always count on Etsy. 

 I think he likes it.

I think he likes it.

So there you have it! I'll be working with this family for a long time, room to room, so you'll get to see the whole house and meet the whole family eventually. Go Sox!

 

 

Posted
AuthorSarah Reid

I haven't shown you my living room in years dudes. YEARS. Whoa. It's the only room in my entire life ever that has felt completely and totally and definitely complete. I don't change things around and it doesn't get messy; it's just constant and steady and safe. It's calm, neutral, and filled with things I've inherited or friends have given me and it makes me feel warm and fuzzy looking at it.

I didn't style these or even plan on taking these pictures, I just shot these while having my morning coffee. Someday, I'll show you the whole room.


Posted
AuthorSarah Reid

Ever since I let myself off the hook and decided that I am really a designer who happens to keep a sporadic and narrowly-focused blog and not a blogger who is terrible at actually blogging, I have felt much better. I've even blogged more - go figure. So in the spirit of being a designer who happens to blog, here is an update on some current projects I've got going in the Bay Area! All these photos suck and were not staged and were taken hastily with an iPhone so be gentle.

Berkeley Hills Total Bathroom Renovation

 These tiles make me absurdly happy.

These tiles make me absurdly happy.

 The client already had this little chair.

The client already had this little chair.

 That tub! Have you seen a sexier tub? I didn't think so.

That tub! Have you seen a sexier tub? I didn't think so.

El Cerrito Hills Mid Century Dream House Miscellany

 We need some real window treatments up in here!

We need some real window treatments up in here!

 Gotta find someone to do some custom iron work! 

Gotta find someone to do some custom iron work! 

 Rug options! Different tree in the corner!

Rug options! Different tree in the corner!

 What to do with the old planter?

What to do with the old planter?

 Oh hey, they have all of  John's  books!

Oh hey, they have all of John's books!

Orinda Boy's Room - remember Jake? Things are on order, I'm searching the Alameda Flea this weekend and installation will happen soon! I'm going to send them away and when they come back everything will be different. I almost never get to do that so I'm excited like an HGTV host.

Berkeley Studio - Remember Christy? I'm still working with her on her house and just added her backyard studio to the mix. She's a photographer and needs a better way to keep and see her props and a desk area that will inspire.

Berkeley Whole Home - Remember Jessica? She's really more a friend then anything nowadays but every once in a while we get together and throw shit out and solve some problems in her house. Some day I'll show you her amazing home and taste and collections but it might take a few years.

San Francisco Modular & Temporary Nursery - this one is super secret and I'm not gonna tell you about it until it's done. I will say that I get to work with incredible people and use all parts of my design brain, which is rare on any given project. This one is the whole package going from designing out of thin air to styling for the photos. Yay!

 First sketches

First sketches

 Samples of the metal frames!  David Dempsey  is a genius.

Samples of the metal frames! David Dempsey is a genius.

My Apartment - just finished up my office! Now I'm on to our entry area and this weird little dark sad porchlette we have off our kitchen that we use for primarily collecting city air pollution in thick layers. It's 4'6" x 4'6". TINY. These projects are just getting going. I'll do full posts when they're done!

Posted
AuthorSarah Reid

I am incredibly sensitive to my surroundings when I'm trying to get work done. Every detail is an opportunity for procrastination or avoidance; My back is to the door! Not enough surface area! Lighting is all wrong! I CAN'T WORK LIKE THIS WHAT'S ON HULU?! So it's no surprise that I have had 3 offices in our apartment in 2 and a half years. 

Having a functional office is becoming more and more important to me. The clients keep coming and I'm tired of spreading out on our dining room table, shuffling salt & pepper shakers and cups of pens around (I CAN'T WORK LIKE THIS!). So in the middle of a heavy week of client work I freaked out and went on a office-improvement rampage, telling myself that my clients would get better work out of me if I had a proper office even if said work might come a day later than expected. 

I started with the Oh What fun! sign. Facebook demanded that I keep it and I agreed. If there's ever been another way of putting how I feel about my job I haven't heard it, so having it above my desk would be, like, perfect. I knew in my bones that the desk needed to be an L shape and white. I knew I wanted to get not-finished canvases by unknown artists to use as cork boards. I knew I wanted all my crafting/decorative nonsense to be visible and within reach, otherwise I reach for Hulu. I knew that between Ikea, UrbanOre, and Out of the Closet I'd be set and I was right!

YAY! Ikea supplied the desk, Out of the Closet sold me those shelves for $10.50, and UrbanOre had 4 canvases I had to have, 2 of which are too pretty to use as cork boards. My client/friend Jessica had given me that chair, the coolest office chair ever known to humankind, and the rest was thrifted at estate sales and stores around the East Bay. 

Here's what I was working with before. Shoot, that's embarrassing. 

 I CAN'T WORK LIKE THIS!

I CAN'T WORK LIKE THIS!

Let's tour the new digs, shall we?

 Is that a handwritten note from Emily Henderson? Yes it is a handwritten note from Emily Henderson. That excellent photo of a fireman's boots is by my friend  Solon .

Is that a handwritten note from Emily Henderson? Yes it is a handwritten note from Emily Henderson. That excellent photo of a fireman's boots is by my friend Solon.

 Do I have a problem? Probably.

Do I have a problem? Probably.

 Always have ribbon at the ready.

Always have ribbon at the ready.

 Yes my chair wears jewelry, doesn't yours?

Yes my chair wears jewelry, doesn't yours?

 Vintage trash cans are the best containers.

Vintage trash cans are the best containers.

 Heck yeah! That horse painting was $14 at UrbanOre and I love it so much.

Heck yeah! That horse painting was $14 at UrbanOre and I love it so much.

 People and memories I love.

People and memories I love.

 Maggie just gave me these vintage darts!

Maggie just gave me these vintage darts!

  Christy  gave me those photo holders!

Christy gave me those photo holders!

 Tools of the trade.

Tools of the trade.

 $4 portrait.

$4 portrait.

 YAAAAY!

YAAAAY!

Look at me! I'm writing this blog post at my desk in my office! It's working!

Whew.

Posted
AuthorSarah Reid