A hub for all things to do with design, furniture painting, photography, style, event planning [and some foodie bits for good measure].  

Studio Progress Update: The Home Stretch!

It's unbelievable how much progress can happen in just three weeks! The construction crew has worked tirelessly to get the studio done, and I'm constantly hearing from friends how shocked they are at how fast the studio has come together.  Having any renovation or new build move efficiently is solely based on the crew you hire and the amount of work you're willing to devote to the project.  Being a furniture painter and designer, I've naturally got a great deal invested in my own personal spaces!

I wanted the kitchen and really the studio as a whole to be a testament to my work as a painter and designer.  I opted to paint the kitchen and bathroom cabinets myself, along with the sliding barn door. The color choices in the main space are entirely neutral, but in contrasting shades and textures, allowing everything to coordinate while still providing a 'blank slate' for the changing pieces of furniture that will make their way through the doors each week. On the exterior, the path leading to the studio is currently being finished. It's probably the most important part of the construction process, since I can't really bring any furniture or clients in until the path is complete.

Tomorrow a cleaning crew is coming in to ready the studio and on Monday our 'finisher' guy will make all the final touch ups to the walls, adjust a few items on my punch list and paint a final coat or two on the floors.  The very last item to go in is the shower door this Tuesday morning, but I can guarantee I'll be moving in immediately after! I've still got work to do on the space, but until I start moving in, there are still a few design choices up in the air. I'll FINALLY start having consistent time to work on my blog again, take on new design clients and get the furniture business back into full swing.  It's such an exciting time here, and I hope to continue sharing the entire process with you! Here are a few more photos I just took this morning, to give you a sense of what the current state of affairs looks like [and it's not looking too shabby if I do say so myself!]  Happy Friday friends! -Jo

Last Christmas Post of the Year [I Promise!]: Christmas Morning + Pets

I know, it’s December 29th, so I’m a little late to the Christmas post game…but bear with me for just one more! I took the weekend off from work and relished every moment. I made myself a latte or three [because I can do that now!], enjoyed a luxurious lush bath and a half day of pure relaxation [not all spent in the tub of course!]. I went to not one but TWO movies [Joy and Star Wars: The Force Awakens…both were fantastic!] and had my fair share of popcorn and Christmas cookies in the theater. I’m finally getting back into the swing of things today and had to share a few bits from Christmas morning.

Between the opening of presents and stockings, breakfast, playing with our toys [well really, the pets handled this part], and lounging out on the deck, I easily took a couple hundred photos! Just imagine your friends who have kids [or maybe you’ve got some of your own]: when they’re little and adorable and it’s Christmas morning, all you want to do is spoil them and take oodles of photos of the inevitable cute overload and sheer joy on their faces. Now I may only have pets, but I’ve got four of them, and the same scenario applies [only I’m not sure if they believe in Santa or not, I haven’t asked].

Christmas morning perfectly shows the love and affection I have for my family [my pets, and of course my Mom, who elected not to be included in the photos!] and the love they have for each other [even Maggie and Watson had a proper snuggle out on the deck!].

I’ll soon get back to the furniture and design and whatnot that’s meant to be on this site, but for now, take a quick scroll through these photos and get a glimpse of what my Christmas morning looks like!

The cats and I enjoy the Yule Log for a bit while we get ready for the great present opening.

Check out this gorgeous wrapping work. I mean really now, we're basically professionals!

Easily the best part of Christmas morning: the investigation and romping about the mess of wrapping and boxes. 

Below sits the tastiest French toast you'll ever have [I speak from experience].

The following is one of my favorite Kona and Watson montages to date.  

Having a brief chat about the morning's events.

Smiles and sniffs.

Watson's tongue though...I can't even. [I know, I'm obsessed with my own pets, can't help it!]

Kona fully taking advantage of every last morsel of treats.

Some of us are a little less thrilled about wearing Christmas bows...

After several failed attempts, I finally got the bow on dear old Jake. But he refused to smile for the camera. I can't win every battle.

Investigating the great outdoors

Why Maggie, what great big eyes you have!

Just a couple dogs hanging out on the deck, no big deal.

Giving our deck dog a kiss.

Get ready for the CUTE OVERLOAD...

Wait, so are we buddies now?

Of course we are, silly! [SNUGGLES...I CAN'T EVEN.]

If you made it to the end of this post, I salute you for putting up with the overly saccharine cuteness of my pets and Christmas morning! I'll keep things mostly design related going forward, promise. Now begins the process of slowly un-Christmasifying the house and getting ready for all the brilliant things 2016 will bring!

24 Random Christmas Moments of 2015

24 Random Christmas Moments from this year: [in no particular order]

1. Trimming the tree with our hoard of ornaments [it may be one of the best trees we’ve had yet!]

2. Baking an excessive amount of Christmas cookies and treats [I even love the mess that inevitably follows] 

3. Watching sappy Christmas commercials on youtube and properly crying while it’s pouring rain out. [but seriously though, these commercials turn me into such a sap!]

4. Playing charades and getting ‘nonchalant leprechaun.’ Just try and act that out… [no photographic proof of this moment, for the best!]

5. Admiring [and making a few] of the ugly sweaters for our advent calendar [this was really all my mom’s doing!]

6. Watching Love Actually multiple times [on different days, so totally normal guys…]

7. Hoarding a ridiculous amount of Christmas pillows for the banquette [but hell if that isn’t the most festive banquette you ever did see!]

8. Singing late night Karaoke [aka singing along with random songs you know, sometimes paired with a bit of dancing!]

9. Being overly competitive at Heads Up [things get a bit physical and VERY intense]

10. Inventing two versions of eggnog [one with eggs, one without, both with bourbon]

11. Witnessing santa zipline from the top of Ponce City Market [amusing, terrifying, and slightly disturbing…]

12. Receiving my copy of Atlanta Magazine featuring Ponce City Market [and my studio!!!]- BEST CHRISTMAS PRESENT!


13. Snuggling up with each of my pets nightly [sometimes one, sometimes all four in a sitting!]

14. Wrapping presents in pretty paper [always with the help of Maggie, particularly when ribbons are involved]

15. Relaxing with Sunday games of Scrabble [with a slightly competitive edge!] paired with copious amounts of tea.

16. Experiencing the drama, intrigue and excitement of a White Elephant party! [sweetened with a healthy dose of GLOGG]

17. Drinking hot chocolate…all day everyday [and now there’s a Snoop Dog song in my head…Merry Christmas or Mizzle Chrizzle? You decide.]

18. Making coastal themed Christmas ornaments with my neighbor [and a heavy dose of wine!]

19. Laying out on the deck with the cafe lights twinkling from above [because I live in Atlanta, and even in December its 75 degrees out!]

20. Putting on a different Christmas movie nearly every day [including more Hallmark Channel movies than I’m willing to admit to…]

21. Running out of / getting slightly sick of all the Christmas movies and switching to binge watching Broadchurch [nothing says ‘Merry Christmas’ like a British murder mystery, am I right?]


22. Spending lots of time painting and singing extremely loudly to Christmas music [sorry neighbors!] while at the studio

23. Cooking Christmas Fettuccine [because they mention eating it in The Holiday] from scratch…this is actually happening as this post goes up, so hopefully it turns out!

24. Lighting lots of holiday scented candles and sitting in the bath with a glass of wine [okay, so this is actually my plan for tonight, but I’m doing it and it’s happening and it’s going to be AWESOME.]

Christmas at my Ponce City Market Studio

Though it's not cold in Atlanta [and I do miss a snowy holiday season!], there's a warmth to this place that I can't get enough of. There’s also just something in the air here at Ponce City Market that puts me in a festive holiday mood.

From my windows, I watch all the people making their way in from the Beltline, taking in the expansive views from the boardwalk-like thoroughfare. Some sit on the rocking chairs, basking in the sunlight and having a restful moment. Others wander around, take photos, and admire the beautiful holiday lights.

Below them, the food hall bustles with crowds of people eager to try all the food offerings [and there are many delicious ones at that!].

This time of year is particularly busy since so many are opting to do their holiday shopping at the stores here. There’s a palpable buzz at Ponce City Market and it gives me a euphoric, Christmas spirit.

Inside my studio, though I didn’t do too much in the way of holiday decorating, it still feels so festive and warm, especially at night. The warmth from my Christmas lights sets a cozy tone for the room. I had a last minute gathering the other day, and thought I’d share some photos I took of the space just before my guests arrived

I took most of the photos from my lofted bedroom looking down below at the living space. I don’t actually take photos of the interior much lately, but when I do, I’m reminded how wonderful it is to have such a colorful, eclectic and inspiring space!

I have to say, I'm all tuckered out from a solid roll out of holiday parties and nights out! In the days leading up to Christmas, I'm looking forward to snuggling myself on my sofa with some tea [or hot cocoa if the mood strikes me!], a book, and just having some quiet time, allowing all the holiday buzz to stay in the shops below.   Happy Friday! -Jo

Last Minute Christmas Party!

The writing for this post will be brief, as I'm currently in the throes of attempting to throw together a VERY last minute Christmas Party! My kitchen currently looks something like this:

But not to worry, tasty things are coming from this chaos. I have a toothache just thinking about it! These cupcakes with buttercream frosting are the central culprit to the tornado in my kitchen:

While I was at it, I went for two other desserts, because I can't be stopped once I've made a massive catastrophe of my kitchen! [photos of those to come later!]  In the meantime, here's what the studio looks like for the party now.  I didn't have much time to really get into festive decorating here since we went all out at the house, but it's still quite nice if I do say so myself!

Now that I've completed my share of the cooking and baking [my sweet mother is helping cook up several Filipino dishes for the party while I get ready!], it's time to tidy up [massive understatement...] and sort myself out for this evening.  I'll return to the regularly scheduled posts hopefully by tomorrow!  Gotta love Christmas!