Wednesday, February 2, 2011

The Art of the Blog

"Happy Birthday to me....happy birthday to me....happy birthday dear Why Not? blog....happy birthday to me!"  Ok.  I'm a bit early, but March 10, 2010, marks the beginning of my crazy ride into blogging - the birth of this bittersweet marriage of adventure and heartache in the design world.  Many have asked me the reasoning behind it and it's really quite simple:  I wanted to share my design ideas about beautiful rooms and talented designers who produce spectacular rooms.  More importantly, I had a deep desire to document my foray into design school as a 40 something mom (in other words, if I could do it...anyone can). 
LA Designer Mary McDonald, one of my favs, graces the cover of Domino Magazine.

Now just because I like to blog doesn't necessarily make me an expert.  It became quickly apparent that there is an art to blogging that I (to be brutally honest) knew squat about.  Sure, writing is important but who wants to hear an expert drone on about topics that only the expert likes? My faithful devotees yearn for more than just words on a page- they want photos.  The formula that works best for me is :  photos + interesting topics + honesty = success. 

There are some eye-popping examples of design blogs in cyberspace.  La Dolce Vita, Material Girls and Coco-Kelley are in the favorites bar at the top of my homepage.  Follow that up with the e-zines High Gloss, Rue and Lonny.  The funny thing is that many of these creators aren't even designers by trade but just some average joes that worship design.  The thrill of my inbox bulging with these jewels makes my life complete.  With their arrivals, come fresh ideas and fresh places to buy goodies along with snapshots that I'm able to save on my mac to pass onto my subscribers. 
High Gloss was just released yesterday!  And began as the result of a team of outstanding bloggers.

Don't get me wrong.  There are some stinky blogs out there clouding the view.  Those I immediately dismissed with the push of a button - never to return to my screen.  Even with my love of design and my head stuffed with nuggets of greatness, I understand my limits.  Just like the creators of Rue, I knew that I needed a team mate to round out my rough edges.
Another great online design magazine...Rue

Enter my buddy Jen.  Part editor, part sounding board and a whole lotta of fun...Jennifer boosts my blogging to a level that easily conveys my personality to the world.  Her editing skills give me that zing in an otherwise ho-hum endeavor.  Thanks. friend. 

Enough about the past.  As with any upcoming landmark birthday, it's time to ponder the future.  Where do I want to go? Coming out of the gate first is my intense desire to get this craziness out of my head and onto the page.  I thrive on chronicling this adventure of design.  It keeps my eye on the prize.  A constant reminder of the mountain I am climbing being an baby designer along with the successes and challenges.  I want to lay bare my progression to my readers in a crisp way - whether it be a new furniture discovery, a fabu paint color or a yawner class assignment.  

Recently I have had the huge honor of becoming blog manager for Dwell With Diginity here in Dallas.  I've mentioned DWD in a prior blog and cannot say enough wonderful things about this non-profit.  The stated goal of DWD is to bring good design to those less fortunate by inspiring them through their living environment to be the best they can be in life.  In other words, bringing beauty and serenity to their homes and having that flow over into all aspects of their life.  The beauty of this project for me is that I am able to manage this from my home and still know that I am contributing to  a worthy cause.  My job description?  Lining up the bloggers and topics for the site while managing the overall flow.  Exciting!
DWD Founders Kim Turner and Lisa Robison after their appearance on Good Morning Texas.  

In thinking forward for the Why Not? blog, I realize that my blog (however spectacular in this infancy stage) can be cranked up a bit.  I would absolutely love, love, love to attend the upcoming blog conference in LA February 28th - March 1st.  This gathering will feature my personal favs:  Palmoa Contreras of La Dolce Vita, Casandra LaValle from Coco+Kelley and Grace Bonney author of Design*Sponge.
Cassandra LaValle from Coco+Kelley will be sharing tips from her successful blog.

Of course there will be designers of all sorts there for the soiree also:  Jan Showers, Barclay Butera and Tobi Fairley.  Unless a sugar daddy pops up in the next few weeks (which with my schedule, who has the time), the chances are zilch that I'll be learning from these gurus in person.  If only Harrison Ford was willing and available...Pinch self.  Wake up.
Atlanta designer and blogger Tobi Fairley will be speaking on How to Build Your Interior Design Business

Availabillity is something that I'm lacking right now.  Design school, dream design job, volunteering for DWD and Paws the new puppy (more about the name in later posts) are all vying for my time.  As of publication, Paws is winning the competition hands down with her cutie patootie puppy snuggles.  So, LA will have to pine for me this year. 
My new puppy Paws...

Time to pack up the pointy pre-birthday hats and streamers until next year.  Snap the photo for the scrapbook and move on with life.  Join me in staking claim to another milestone in my design progression.

More cake, anyone?


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