Tuesday, May 11, 2010



I’m half way through the quarter.  Time flies when you are having fun.  It’s been quite a ride and here are the top 5 things I have learned at this point.

1)   I actually use this stuff
It’s true.  I am actually using what I learn in school!.  I remember back in college, the first time around, I kept wondering when I would actually use the financial calculations in the stats class I was taking. But not now!   From Drafting I, I have created a few quick floor plans for a client.  In doing this, I realized that large big chairs just won’t work on a certain wall - all because I measured properly and used all my furniture templates.  From Textiles, I learned to make sure the fabric runs the right way and that silk curtains on a west wall in Texas probably aren’t a good choice.  While running this morning, I actually identified the Greek Order of columns in my neighborhood.  Seems like the Corinthian type is the most popular….

2)   Ahhh….Summer Road Trips
There is no summer break for those of us at the Art Institute.  We run on the quarter system, year around, 11 weeks on and a few weeks off in between.  No more months off in the summer!  All the students in my class are lamenting about their friends who are finishing up their semester to return home for a break. 

But not us.  Looks like I will have some textbooks with me this year at the pool…but at least I will have a cute bag!

And this summer I will be driving a lot. No, it won’t be to Watercolor, Florida (our favorite beach spot) but on the many highways and streets of Dallas.  Mileage and gas are my new friends.  Not only do I have to commute to school twice a week, I am also driving around grabbing fabric samples, and shopping for furniture and accessories.  I haven’t spent this much time in my car since the traffic days in Chicago (think 2 hour commute from the suburbs to downtown, with snow falling and Michael Jordan playing that evening).  Thank goodness I have a big back trunk…and that my husband hasn’t mentioned the mess of our dining room that is now functioning as my new work room….

My poor dining room...crying for cleanup, redesign and new paint!

3)   I still want to be an architect or designer!
Yes, I have a totally new appreciation for architects.  After drawing tiny details of a home plan in Drafting I, I get the importance of correct measurements and flow.  But that doesn’t make me want to become an architect.  I actually get a bit bored drawing all these details - I guess that’s why they invented CAD (Computer Aided Design).  Bring on the color and furniture and I promise I will always bring along a great architect when I need one!

4)   Project Management is key
Of course, it is an art school and a good eye for design is essential.  But at the same time, you can’t do well without project management skills.  I’m grateful I got those first time around because I am putting them to much use!  Balance is the key for getting all my homework done, getting good grades, designing and purchasing while keeping my clients happy, and learning quickbooks and invoices (Thanks Jenny).  Most importantly, making sure the family is happy and cared for... 

It’s not a piece of cake.  I can’t exactly sit around and eat bon bons.  A new client asked me if I could have her three rooms done by Memorial Day.  Like, ok…sure…always up for a challenge….here are some of my orange accent inspirations…

5)   I made the right decision!
It’s hard to believe, but only three months ago I made the decision to jump into design.  I’m happy to report I’m totally thrilled with the change.  I’m definitely starting at the bottom, but I love what I do.  I mean, I actually get paid to shop with someone else’s money!  And all those design magazines I read every month?  I’m actually using them in my school assignments and my client work.  Oh, how it all is slowly coming together...

Love, C

P.S.  And yes Mom and Dad, I am getting all A’s.  But at least this time you aren’t paying for it…

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