Thursday, April 23, 2015

Name dropping

Name dropping and a few dreadful pictures of me that we will have to endure.

Raina is wearing heels, I am not

Last week I met up with Raina Cox, the voice behind the blog If the Lamp Shade Fits. We met for for lunch in Old Town Alexandria and I let my daughter play hooky in order to spare Raina's daughter from our bloggy chat. It was so much fun!

I think our girls were best friends in a past life and stand a good chance of being besties if Raina would just move next door.

We enjoyed our day and saw a few really strange things.
Part of our post lunch conversation:
Raina: A shopping cart just drove by.
Me: What?!?
Raina: A shopping cart full of people just drove by. Is that some local thing?
Me: No?

After lunch said ginormous shopping cart had been pulled over and tons of people were snapping photos. Hours later we found it by us in the parking lot.

Fun but weird.

On Friday I hopped in the car and headed for High Point NC.
The opening gala for the Junior League High Point Designer Showhouse was in the evening and I had done a painting for Lisa Mende's kitchen/breakfast room and tons of people I know were going. Sorry for so many craptastic iPhone photos.

Her space was a showstopper. I want the kitchen in my house!

Kim Macumber and David Ecton (of Parker Kennedy Living) posed in the carriage house bedroom that David and Lance Jackson designed.

 Here is where I make excuses. Friday was the worst pollen day and I sneezed more than I have in years. Let me tell you, sneezing at 70 miles an hour is terrifying so I took every allergy med known to man to try and make it stop. Therein lies the reason I look puffy and demented.

Kim Macumber, Kerry Steele, David Ecton, Linda Holt
It was great fun chatting with Nancy Powell and Bethany Brower, two old friends. I met Kim Macumber in person for the first time and her pal Linda Holt.
I chatted with Meredith Heron and giggled with Traci Zeller.
It was fabulous.

I really wish I had taken more pictures. The house was really incredible.

Friday, April 17, 2015

The sconce saga

As we continue to prepare the house for sale, we face decisions about how to tackle items that should be replaced.
Consider the sconce at the landing on out back staircase. It reminded me of a bra cup and Mr. Designdumonde hated that you could see into it as you descended the stairs.
Down it came for the continuation of SW Repose Gray on the walls. 
Mr. D asked what to do with it. I said throw it away. So he did and I promptly went looking for a replacement.
I found this.

We are trying to keep the budget low while not using obvious ugly, builder-grade fixtures. Oh yeah but nothing too crazy stylish that your average Joe and Jane would not understand. So, vanilla with a cherry but no sprinkles. Sigh.
So Mr. makes the fatal mistake of asking if I could find something for less $$.
Grr. I find this and order it.

Stop laughing. 
It was too big and sucked so it went back. Just get the other one Kerry. Nope it was out of stock by then so the search continued.

I wanted this Arteriors Pruitt sconce.

 Or the Arteriors Voughn sconce but both came in around $400 and since I am leaving that ain't happening.

Yesterday I peeked at Home Depot and found my original choice was back in stock and ordered it. Whew! Please keep your fingers crossed that it does not suck.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Alternatives to the ubiquitous

Someone once asked me the question with puzzled disgust, "Why do you always have to be different?" I do have a contrarian streak that compels me to zag when zigging seems to be the thing to do.
I came up with a few trendy items that have been around for a bit and an alternative for us zag types.

Cute but everywhere. Instead of this...

Not another Beni!

I like this neutral alternative with a geometric pattern from Stark.

Truth be told, I almost bought one of these last week and I don't hate them.

Here is my alternative gold metal accent piece, also from Target.

What have I left out? Many things I am sure but I have canvases calling me.

Thursday, April 9, 2015

Like Switzerland

"10 cent phone booth" mixed media on paper ©2015 Kerry Steele
Neutrals have dominated my palette lately. I really have no explanation. I still like color but I like using neutrals to "whisper" in my non-verbal voice.
Here are a few that I have completed recently.

"Filthy Lucre" ©2015 Kerry Steele

"Nocturne II" ©2015 Kerry Steele

"Through the window" ©2015 Kerry Steele
The subtle differences in grays either from the tube or mixed, fascinates me. I had a mostly gray and green painting and on a whim added beige to the edges and it made the grays "bloom" and separate themselves from one and other.

"Mirror's a lonely place" ©2015 Kerry Steele

Monday, April 6, 2015

Artist Dorothy Shain

We are on "Spring break" here which means, for me, working from home is extra hard. I think I will devote the blog posts this week entirely to art. So be sure to check back after getting to know the lovely, Dorothy Shain.

I visited Redux studios in Charleston just over a month ago and it was a late Saturday afternoon. Only a few artists were there working. Dorothy Shain stuck out in my mind because of her charming, welcoming demeanor. Did I mention her wonderful artwork?!?
I looked at her website as soon as I got back to my hotel and discovered a Virginia connection. The girl sailed around the world with UVA's sailing program! I emailed her as soon as I was back in Virginia and began to get to know her work a bit.

Photos courtesy of Brooke Kiernan

Get a load of that figure! It is one of the pieces that really moves me.

Photos courtesy of Brooke Kiernan
I asked Dorothy to tell me a bit more.
Here are a few of the things that Dorothy had to say in her own words:
"My current work is extremely explorative. My paintings aim to channel my inner William de Kooning with bright colors, mixed media, and gestural drawings. I often feel like my painting is not finished unless I leave the studio with paint in my hair, ears & on my phone. These works are my fun/ wild works. I get very lost in them, don't focus on detail, and let completely loose. 

My pen & ink drawings are opposite. They are very tightly wound & require a great deal of attention to detail."

"Inspiration: Talking to other creatives around town, collaborating & traveling. Meeting new people really fuels my process and causes my wheels to spin. Current artist/ designer obsession:  - She is fueling my play with paper cut outs. 


On the horizon: A collaboration with Tink + Tiger

     An art show on

     An art + interior designer dinner with & "
I encourage you to look at her website. I think it is a fresh take on an artist's website that is well executed.
Also, visit Redux studios in person, if you can, but certainly the artists that use the studio space warrant a web visit.

This is NOT a sponsored post. All opinions are my own and unsolicited.