Category Archives: Featured

Founder & Creator Douglas Calhoun Works Frame Wall Magic for Zillow Porchlight

Incorporating interior design styles with a roommate, partner, or loved one is all about personal touches and pin-pointing a combined interest or aesthetic.  Watch and learn as Interior  Design Expert Douglas Calhoun creates a floor-to-ceiling frame wall for a special couple in Seattle.

Lauren and her fiance are taking a big step, cohabitation! They’re recently engaged and Lauren is making space for not only his furniture and odds and ends, but his style. This happy could have a love for food, wine, and entertaining. The two are active and social and we wanted to brighten the space they spend time entertaining in, the dining room. It’s adjacent to a cozy living room with iconic Seattle views of waterfront, sea planes, and neighboring hillside homes. The dining room is also steps away from their kitchen which we took foodie inspiration from. Their love of food and wine was the jumping off point for their frame wall.

You want to create a balance of organic shapes and square corners. Remember it’s a personal story so no need to be to precise, it should look and feel like something you accomplished easily. Sourcing vintage cookbooks, throwback kitchen tools, and metallic shapes like street signs and large lettering made for a great fit. Reframing pages and posters meant varying shapes and sizes creating a gathered look.

Cutting out the shapes with old warping paper or butcher paper and laying them either on the wall itself or on the floors means you rearrange without hammering a single nail. Do your research and look up a few images online for inspiration. Remember, it’s your personal space and style. If your space is more modern line them all up in one dramatic row or if your looking for a more lived in style than go crazy and layer different shapes in whatever format you’d like.

Final touches include a small piece of furniture at the bottom of your frame wall. A chest or bench anchors the whole scene and makes for a lovely spot to set a row of glasses or flower arrangement.

4 Rad Bar-Carts on Zillow.com by The Queer Interior

westcoast

The Queer Interior Team is psyched that we’re featured on Zillow.com today. Big ups to the amazing folks who chipped in to style, decorate, and capture these enviable bar-carts! 

We put together 4 distinct bar cart set-ups for your Mad Men viewing party, house warming or just to impress your next one night stand. The fabulous shoot for Zillow.com was made possible by a talented team of Brooklyn movers and shakers! Kristen Blush who we’ve worked with before got effortlessly stunning images of each cart on location at Patina Rentals. The floral designs by Hops Petunia captured the mood of each bar-cart. Guest staring: Foxy and Winston bottle openersVan Brunt Stillhouse booze, and lemons and limes from the Park Slope Food Coop. Below are just a few of my favorites!

Head to Zillow and comment on your favorite and spread the love! 

aw!The above shot is one of my favorite. The pink accents bring the 60s Shoshanna out in me. The flowers by Hops Petunia are spot on! #GIRLS
Butch

This vintage guy is the hot nerd in the bunch. He’s got a twee thing going, but he’s butched up by the trophy and oil painting. Highly dateable.

Moody1

On set we were calling this set up the modern painter and it ended up having a very new-money feeling that I love in the final look.

WestCoast

This was everyone’s favorite look of the day. Maybe because it evoked so much Summer vibes. We’re itching for the west coast and this little piece of heaven could really scratch! LOVE!

Beach House Inspired Brooklyn Apartment

Screen Shot 2015-07-09 at 2.43.49 PM
For many people, summertime means heading out to soak up some rays in the Hamptons, taking a dip at the nearest idyllic borough beach, or hanging out at a backyard BBQ. But theater producer Kate Russell and her partner Colin Moneymaker share a year-round beach bungalow — which just happens to be in Brooklyn’s Greenpoint neighborhood. Car horns and street chatter can’t be heard form this garden-facing abode, so there’s no disruption of the home’s island-getaway vibe.

2

The couple found the main room’s mounted drift wood on a trip to Maine and affixed it to the wall to remind them of their travels. It acts as both keepsake and one-of-a-kind sculpture.

8

Below it, a small antique school desk plays DJ, holding a modest but well-played record collection. Tucked inside are a few favorite titles and a seashell, a memento of a day by the water.

9

Kate and Colin’s combined design aesthetic is cool and collected. Colin works in downtown Manhattan, and Kate is a freelancer who works from her home office.

2

A simple desk in the living room is where she’s put into motion her most recent project: launching a theater company, and fundraising for its first production. Coincidentally, given Kate’s seaside-inflected home decor, the company’s inaugural season kicks off with an original adaptation of the classic maritime novel “Moby Dick.”

11

A laidback look

13

 

The Moroccan and tie-dyed pillows paired with colorfully patterned rugs against blond wood pieces and a modern couch help to communicate a relaxed style. The combined textures are thoughtfully chill, and reminiscent of overlapping beach towels on the sand. White shelves, built by Colin, hold photographs capturing time spent with family, intermingled with artifacts found along the way and quaint stacks of treasured natural elements like stones and driftwood.Colin takes great pride in his city garden.

3

 

Plant life along all the windowsills evokes images of a beautiful reef or cliff-side bluff. Some of the couple’s favorite plants are sourced at nearby Homecoming on Franklin Street, a charming cafe and lifestyle store, and a haven for the neighborhood’s urban gardeners.

14

When trying to achieve this look, remember to balance color and space. It’s a memorable home because it’s personal, but still minimal. In the absence of clutter, there are keepsakes.room

Taking a lead from nature itself, only a handful of simple pieces make the space sing. But Kate and Colin manage to bring the staycation home, and set a course to the welcoming space where they’ve dropped anchor.

Paris: A Tiny Tour of Boot Cafe

exterior boot cafe

It’s been really lousy in New York (and anywhere north of Washington) for the last few weeks and I figured I could brighten your day with a cyber jaunt to Paris for some pour-over coffee at Boot Cafe!

flowers in window_boot

I didn’t discover Boot Cafe. Everyone has scooped it, I mean everyone. The New York Times and Vogue have blown its tiny cover. You can’t but help feel like you’ve discovered a well-kept secret. That might be attributed to the size of the cafe, it’s probably standing room 10 people and even that would be a tight fit.

inside server station

It’s a departure form the lofty co-working spaces coffee shops have adapted in the last decade. What it lacks in physical real estate it makes up for in balls-out personal charm. The walls are layered in photographs, art objects, and postcards. It has a distinctly American vibe thanks to killer take-away coffee and the nearly all-English speaking Baristas.

Boots4

Located in a distinctly queer and not so newly bourgeoisie neck of the woods called the Marais, this miniature wonderland is an ideal spot for a tourist or local to hang their hat. The French signage from the original shoe repair shop is a beautiful shade of pale blue and as you enter the double doors your welcomed with all white subway tilling, three tiny marble tables and a tidy server station which looks like the best coffee shop job this side of the river.

Boots10

The vibrant green plastic stools that look like stumps are Arnold Circus Stools and are sourced from a shop in London by designer Martino Gamper. They are so chic and I am obsessed with them.

Boots1

Along narrow black shelves are perched bottles of water for the taking, bags of coffee beans, and treasures for purchase from nearby and faraway. When I stopped in they were selling Echo Park Pottery Mugs by Peter Shire Studio from the US.

Screen Shot 2015-02-14 at 4.48.47 PM

After taking some pictures and caffeinating I sat down and talked shop with a local regular, cutie Frank Adrian who brought by a homemade lemon cake that was divine (sidebar: he’s got a killer Instagram- follow @cakeboyparis). The small interior invites conversation the same way a cozy living room might.

Boots9

I can’t stress enough how generally lousy the take-away coffee game is in Paris, but Boot Cafe is one of the few exceptions and give you that boost a city for walking always needs. Go there when you are visiting Paris, or close your eyes real tight, ignore the buzzing of your electric heater and go there right now in a daydream. Isn’t it rad!? I know!

Boots11

Tabletop Trends for Fall Dinner Parties by way of Zillow.com

Excited to share these trends and entertaining tips for your next Fall dinner party. If it’s a casual lunch, fun dinner party, or holiday potluck I’ve got you set with 2 very cool very different table set ups. Share this video as a cheat sheet if you’ll be co-hosting a cozy dinner soon!


 

Shot thanks to some amazing production sponsors in The Queer Interior studio we put together two really rad tables that combine some classic Fall favorites and fun retro-cabin vibes. Table settings and accents that help to create a cozy vibe are showcased in this video staring yours truly as the host. So funny watching it back for me. It was a great day of shooting and I’m so pleased with the outcome.

Shop these looks! Here are some of the rad folks featured:
Patina Rental: Brass glass candle holders
Foxy and Winston : Tea towels
A&G Merch: Flasks and animal plates
Jill Lindsey: Blankets

Stay tuned because I’ve got move videos coming!
Excited to help you entertain with style!

THE GET THERE: Unsolicited Advice to a Freelancer

Credit: Michael Popp Studio
Credit: Michael Popp Studio

I haven’t done a post in a while and I thought I’d share some things I’ve learned in the last 10 years in New York. Seeing everyone “get there” in business or personal life is something that starts to happen when you hit 30 in New York. Either folks are having babies and buying houses or peers start to find a niche for themselves professionally.

Recently, out to coffee with my friends I’ve noticed all are in varying stages of either realizing or investing in their own professional success in non-profit sectors and freelance capacities. Some are expanding their businesses, some are starting new bigger/hairier projects and some are packing-up and heading west. My own philosophy for a long time was to find money. I took every gig under the sun and that nomadic freelance lifestyle always paid, sometimes not with actual dollars, but always with a lesson or a scar. That philosophy has served me for as long as it could. I have survived in New York and now I gotta get there.

Below are 3 things that continue to work for me and that I learned from folks further down the road than myself.  Some or none of these will apply to your experience.

1. Ask for what you want

This is something I learned from my parents and something I really take for granted. Everyone has goals they’ve either sketched out on a map or keep tucked away til’ something magical happens. You can’t bank on that magic and often times the map you’ve laid out doesn’t include the whole picture. The conventional ways modeled for creative people “getting there” haven’t proven useful to me. The way I’ve gotten to a fair majority of my professional success is by asking people for exactly what I want and working backwards. The truth is that people want to help other people and it’s made a whole lot easier if the people in charge have a full understanding of what you want.

2. Better done than perfect

There are jobs where things have to be perfect. Doctors, judges, architects all require a monastic commitment to details and perfection. Luckily the jobs I’m good at don’t. I work in interior design editorial, fundraising, events, styling and other creative industries and I know we aren’t saving lives, we’re making things pretty. There are tons of logistics and attention to detail and those moving pieces are very important, but not science. The personal experience someone has is the only part of the job that should be perfect; the getting there doesn’t have to be.

3. You are doing it wrong

at home project

I’ve messed up on projects or left things uncompleted and had to experience the consequences. It’s in those hair-raisingly awkward interactions or dramatic emails that you learn the most. You have to do it wrong. I learned way more from my slip ups than I did from my successes. The caveat here is that you want to be doing wrong less and less of the time.

What are the tools you use to “get there”?

Where these tips useful? irritating? Comment below

Escape With Manuela, A Small Marvel Designed for an Urban Patio

NIMIO

MANUELA is a small folded steel shelf to perch a coffee or wine on during your fire escape hang out. It comes in treated wood or hydrualic tile. I love the straight-up design of this friendly little space saver. It’s a real hero and can make even the bleakest of fire-escapes cheery and chic.  Designed by NIMIO  in Madrid, the small showroom produces elegant and simple solutions to tight urban living. We included it in our tip-sheet for outdoor entertaining on Zillow.com. Check out more tips for your next party on the deck here! two patio

 

 

 

Subtraction, Not Addition Design Tips Featured on Zillow.com

before side tableIt’s Spring which means it’s time to tidy up our living spaces and edit our winter hoard. I  shared some tips of the trade when it comes to using what you already have and looking at your space from a different angle. I rarely share images of my own space but decided since it would prompt me to clean up a little why not. For the first time ever I shot on location in my Park Slope brownstone and  I was thrilled with the results. It’s always exciting to see your very own stuff being shared and liked online. Enjoy and turn up the music and take on the clutter, here’s a hint, most of it’s trash!

Check out the full feature on Zillow.com today! 

Here’s one of the quick tips:  End tables often become a magnet for magazines, keys, office supplies and more. Get rid of the debris, then discourage it from accumulating again by grabbing a few favorite titles with color-matching bindings and stacking them to create a sweet, concise arrangement. Add interest by introducing an item with personal significance, like a camera (found this one at Housing Works in Brooklyn) or vase. You’ve already got the materials for this easy update, and even a small edit can have big impact. Your space will instantly look bigger and cleaner.

side table after

THREADBARE THEATRE WORKSHOP GETS ITS SEA LEGS AT WORD BOOKSTORE.

kate
pictured: Threadbare Founder Kate Russell credit: Michael Cinquino

Longtime friend, Kate Russell (a fellow at ELNYA) is producing a staged reading of her adaptation of Herman Melville’s Moby Dick entitled “or, The Whale.” As founding member of Threadbare Theatre Workshop she’s hustled together some really talented actors and creatives who will all be hanging out and drinking wine  from local sponsors.

Mark your calendars for an Earth Day (April 22nd) at 6:30 pm at WORD Bookstore in Greenpoint Brooklyn.  After the reading there will be a creative conversation talk-back with one of my other favorite creative ladies in N.Y .C (and sometimes L.A) Jen Tullock.

Get into it! I’ll see you there! GO THREADBARE.

Vegan Hotdogery Yeah Dawg Needs You! #UPDATED

YEAHDAWG

Yeah Dawg needs you as a backer on Kickstarter. Head that way and show love! New York City is a hot-dog city and it’s about time we could all be in on the fun! #YeahDawg

UPDATE:

Yeah Dawg has raised over $20,000.00 ! This means they’ve got 12 hours to make their remaining $5,000.00. Tweet them: @YeahDawgVegan  / Facebook them: Yeah Dawg Facebook / A Instagram them: @YeahDawgVegan to help spread the word. These final hours are the most important ! Godspeed you vegan hot dog! 

Y.D is an organic plant based pop up hot dog cart that serves soy and gluten free dawgs along with an assortment of home made fermented krauts, pickled toppings, coconut bacon, and our own cashew mayonnaise. The Y.D is homemade and hand-rolled using a blend of beets, potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, sunflower seeds, GF flours, herbs and spices. They are unique because they are the only soy and gluten free dawg to hit the market.  Founder and Chief Marina Benedetto is a mover and shaker in New York and has donated services and been an awesome leader/advocate in the LGBTQ community for decades. Show Marina’s brand some love and make the Yeah Dawg Team’s day!

Screen Shot 2015-02-25 at 4.36.02 PM

They are over half way to their goal and need backers on Kickstarter.com. I’m sharing because I realized my own start-up dreams on Kickstarter for The Queer Interior.com and I know how meaningful it can be to feel so supported. If you can’t donate, don’t. Just share the Kickstarter link on your social media and spread the word.  A post on Facebook or Instagram is super helpful especially in the last 72 hours. They’ve got 3 days left and it’s not over til’ it’s over. Share with your foodie friends and brooklyn peeps and let’s get Marina that money.

Here are some helpful links so you can learn more! Feel free to pass any of these along to your followers, friends, and coworkers because every $1 counts! 

Screen Shot 2015-02-25 at 4.49.58 PM

Village Voice spent a day working for Yeah Dawg.

Screen Shot 2015-02-25 at 4.44.54 PMWatch Marina as interviewed by Brooklyn Independent Media talk about the brands goals in philanthropy and taste!

Screen Shot 2015-02-25 at 4.47.21 PM

Check out the reaction of New Yorkers trying these banging’ dawgs through a NY CITY LENS. (Spoiler: THEY LOVED THEM.)