Last year was the first time we rented a house in Palm Springs for the entire month of January.
And we were there again this year. Everyone always thinks we are on vacation, and I constantly get emails saying “Hope you’re having a relaxing time in Palm Springs”, but here’s the thing, we’re just working in a different location.
When you have an online business like we do, our office is on our laptops. January is dark and gloomy in Vancouver and it helps to get out of winter to keep our energy going for all the projects we’re working on.
My new website launched last January and it had some glitches that needed to be worked out. I have never met anyone with a big website that didn’t have issues when they launched. Thank goodness for my web developer Terrence Murtagh. He was my lifeline.
Anyway, this blog is in it’s 10th year. And over the years, whenever I would announce that I was taking a trip, I would get an inquiry from at least one or two readers asking if I’d come to their house to consult with them.. I’m not always available, depending on my schedule, however I love to make house calls locally or when I travel if at all possible.
Since you already know me from reading this blog, we are instant friends as soon as I arrive. It’s one of my favourite things to do.
And get this, suddenly these inquiries stopped almost completely, since the launch of my new website (one year ago).
Photo by Ella White Photography
My primary business model is teaching and writing. However, I find the time to take on one or two decorating projects each year because it’s all I have time to do and I love decorating. It keeps me fresh and keeps my readers aware that I know how to pull a room together with colour.
Many designers, once they achieve a certain level of success in their business, (and develop a well-rounded portfolio that shows their work well) only take on bigger projects. Often they stop taking one-off consultations because they have so many projects on the go.
However, here’s why I still love in-person colour and design consultations:
I was in a clients kitchen a few years ago who had charcoal glazed cabinets. I noticed that even though they were glazed, they looked quite white at the same time.
So I pulled out my white fan deck to determine which white they were painted. They were off-white. That’s when I realized that the glaze had only been applied to the traditional raised panels around the cabinet door, it had not been applied over the entire door (example below).
Until I saw that in person, my general advice about glazed cabinets had been this: Once you glaze your cabinets, they turn beige. If you use a green glaze, they will be green beige, etc.
During the tuscan trend, glazed cabinets were huge because we weren’t decorating with true white or off white like we are now. Everything was cream and glazed and that coordinated well with the browns and golds and richer colours we were using.
You can see the overall glaze on the kitchen cabinets in the above photo. And how the window trim and coffered ceiling is whiter because they are not glazed.
My sister Elizabeth has a cream, glazed kitchen (above). Her cabinets have been covered in a ‘mocha’ glaze which essentially turned them pink beige. If you look closely, you’ll notice the glaze has a pink undertone.
Making personal house calls from the East Coast to the West Coast keeps me on the pulse of colour and in tune with all the nuances I might otherwise miss.
This is why I’m writing this post. To remind you that I’ll still make a local house call if you are planning a renovation or a new build, or a decorating project and need some colour and design advice to make sure all your colours are going to be right.
If you live in Vancouver or the lower mainland, my rates are located here.
And I’m off to Los Angeles tomorrow morning with my team for 3 days, back on Sunday! Follow me on Instagram and Instastories to see what I’m up to!