Saturday, September 27, 2014

Sblogging = Slog + Blog

An article on blogging done in the New York Times has been making the rounds. It's about blogger burnout.

All the usual poster children of the blog world are in the article, talking about how they have to take a break, or have moved onto posting less calling it slow blogging. Everything has a shelf life. Or life simply becomes more demanding. Boo-fucking-hoo. Okay that was snarky. But really, The New York Times deserves it sometimes.

From The New York Times

Remember when we all started blogging? We were in a fever to share and over share on a daily, if not hourly basis. I loved having other design geeks to communicate with. But sooner or later you run out of projects because you actually finish your house (for the moment). Or it takes too much time and money to produce those cute and crafty DIY posts. Or new and easier ways to photo share crop up like Pinterest, Facebook, Instagram, etc. Or it gets to be a chore (like doing homework or having a deadline) to come up with posts. Or you start putting ads on your blog that have to be managed. Or your blog becomes a "brand" or a business marketing tool that needs to be constantly cultivated.

I have slowed down because I am in the thick of grief. Living without Alberto is a shadow life. I am still at the stage where getting up, getting dressed, and doing work is about all I can handle sometimes.

I don't have guilt about not blogging. My younger friends say blogs are dinosaurs. But then so am I. Some bloggers stopped because they got fed up with the cliques that wouldn't let them in. I never let my blog be the boss of me. I chose to keep it homey and personal. Wonderful things happened because of my blog in a fabulous hippie-dippie organic way: Friends, work, my book, learning things, etc. There was no master plan to take over the design world.

I am proud of my blog. I was "new" when I started in 2008. There were others that started in 2006 and 2007 who I looked up to. This blog is my life history, an archive, forever etched on the Internet. No one may care, or someone might. I care. We all want to leave our mark on the world. Blogs have enabled a zillion souls to leave a legacy. I am so thankful for the body of work that Alberto put out there via his many blogs, Youtube, Facebook, and our Planet Tango web site.

From the blog The Tango Life

What about you guys? Are you still reading blogs? Are you still posting on your blogs? I can still spend a happy day clicking around reading blogs I love. It's how I stay in touch. Every post doesn't have to be a masterpiece. Sometimes I go back in my own archive to read early posts, and I love the innocence and enthusiasm. I still feel that way.

I also think we have all become victims of the over share. Along with cameras on cell phones came the thrill of documenting everything with an ease that was so exciting and seductive. But while snapping pictures we missed the actual experience of what we were taking photos of. I had some girls over for dinner. These are some of the women who have been keeping me alive these past sad months. They check in on me, feed me, lend me money, take me out, and never, never weary of my tears or talking about Alberto. I asked them to please not take any pictures or post anything anywhere. I didn't know what reaction I would get, but all of them were relieved and delighted to truly be relaxed in the selfie-less moment.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

New Build of the Year

I recently did a feature for New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles honoring architect Morris Adjmi for the new build of the year. If you are in New Orleans pick up an issue if you don't already subscribe. For you visual vamps outside of New Orleans NOH&L is very worthy to subscribe to. I am a firm believer that there is outstanding design talent in New Orleans that can inspire you and hold up to any other design work anywhere.  So subscribe HERE

Modern dining room - Interior Design by Valorie Hart

New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles - Fall 2014 - Subscribe

I also love this house because I did the interior design for it. When I first saw the house, it was a plain white box with a few pieces of place holder furniture from Ikea. The aesthetic was definitely modern, and I was not sure how my brand of mix would dovetail with the owners. But mesh it did, and it was one of my most rewarding projects.

Here are a the pages from the magazine, and a few out takes. The wonderful photography is by Sara Essex Bradley. 

New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles Fall 2014 - Interior Design by Valorie Hart

New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles Fall 2014 - Interior Design by Valorie Hart

New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles Fall 2014 - Interior Design by Valorie Hart

New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles Fall 2014 - Interior Design by Valorie Hart

New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles Fall 2014 - Interior Design by Valorie Hart

 Wallpaper  from Flavor Paper in a two story stairwell - Interior design by Valorie Hart

Pair of vintage chairs reupholstered by Leonels in Kravet fabric; toss pillows are custom except for "Be Nice or Leave"; rug custom over dyed by London Varner; pair of oversize modern lamps from Eclectic Home - Interior design by Valorie Hart
Vintage Bitosi urn; "Be Nice of Leave" pillow from The Shops at 2011 - Interior design by Valorie Hart

Detail in child's bedroom - Interior design by Valorie Hart

For shopping and more sources, please go to New Orleans Homes & Lifestyles magazine.
Have talent, will travel - contact me at - no project too large or too small.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Happy Birthday MILIEU!

Launching a new shelter magazine is daunting in the best of times. It is especially courageous in this digital age that has seen the demise of so many beloved magazines. Pam Pierce has talent and vision and drive and believes in unicorns and happy endings. Well maybe not unicorns, but she has done something extraordinary with MILIEU magazine. It has made it to its one year anniversary, and I am sure there will be many more to come.

Pick up a gorgeous hard copy wherever shelter magazines are sold.
Or subscribe to MILIEU HERE, and you can also check out MILIEU online.

This issue is extra special to me, because I have the honor of having one of my design projects featured in it! Peter Vitale did the beautiful photography, and Pam oversaw the shoot. I placed myself in their hands as the lovely assistant, always eager to see how someone else would handle a photo shoot. It looks amazing! Former NOLA resident Suzanne Levert wrote the article with insight and verve. 

As usual I like to take along as many people with me when something good happens to me. I use local merchants and artists in my design work as much as possible. I featured photographer Lisa Conrad, art from Gallery Orange, home furnishings from Eclectic Home, Source, Renaissance Interiors, and AKA Stella Gray. Local craftspeople Shading Places and Mitchell Settoon also did great work for me and got a shout out.

I also connected fellow New Orleans designer Donna Masselli with MILIEU, and I am proud to see that she got the cover! You know how I love New Orleans and all the talent here.

Joni Webb from Cote de Texas did a wonderful post about this issue of MILIEU so take a look at that too.

I have been posting few and far between. I apologize. Grief will not be hurried. Just working to make a living exhausts me. I so wish Alberto was here to see this issue of MILIEU. He did a lot of things for me on this project, and the clients Erica and Kevin loved him. He was always so proud of me and my work. He would be thrilled for me.

Anyhoo, it goes without saying: Have talent, will travel. Keep me in mind for styling, decorating, designing, and writing...xo xo