I am sooo very excited to introduce you to the extremely talented Amy and show you around her lovely apartment! I hope it inspires you as much as it inspired me. Amy truly has eye for design and gift for making ordinary household items extraordinary!
1. Your style is so unique and enchanting! When did you first fall in love with interior design?
Thank you! That’s exactly how I want people to feel when they walk into my house!
I really fell in love with Interior Design when I was in High School (way back in the day). I was always really artistically inclined and I had an amazing teacher who got me into Graphic Design and from that point I discovered that I wanted to use my love of color and graphics in other ways, Interior Design was my favorite and most satisfying path. I love making people have feeling when they enter a room, using color, print, and design to cause something unexpected.
2. Where do you go for inspiration? What inspires you?
I love art in every form and try to see it in everyday things. I really love graffiti and the feelings that it incites, so even just walking down the street can give me inspiration. I always carry a camera, you never know when inspiration might hit so I always want to document what caused the inspiration in the first place, I always feel like its a moment I may never see again so I better capture it. One time I passed this girl on the street with the most amazing tattoos, they were vibrant and just beautiful…a true piece of personal art. I asked her if I could take a photo of her arm because it was just so pretty and it caused a feeling inside me that I wanted to duplicate one day.
Sometimes I love just walking through the paint department, I will find the first color that stands out to me and get a sample of it to use somewhere some day.
3. Where do you find your objects and treasures? What are some of your favorite shops?
Being new to Delaware and the Philly area and still getting settled in my own home I haven’t really discovered a whole lot yet but I cant wait to start digging in literally! Back in Nashville I loved flea markets! Flea markets are an amazing place to not only find inspiration but find great pieces of furniture that you will love forever. I love to find “multi-use furniture” or something that I can turn into that. Finding a great dresser that needs some love and turning it into a bar, or an old coffee table where I can take a little padding and some fabric and have a great bench for the end of my bed…those are the treasures that I love. Flea markets are also a great place to find vendors that you can really get to know, once they get to know you they can keep their eyes open for great finds that you will love and price negotiation is ALWAYS an option! I had these amazing vendors at the Nashville Flea Market that I had a great relationship with, I would get calls from them letting me know of pieces that they found for me and I almost always bought them. Developing that relationship and them knowing that you will always buy from them is a great way to score those deals. I have a gorgeous 1950’s lazy boy office set because of that, all in perfect working condition.
Another good place is GOODWILL, never underestimate the power of the furniture and art section of Goodwill. It may need a lot of work but in the end its worth it sometimes. I once found two vintage advertisements from Harpers Bizarre magazine that turned out the be originals! I had them framed and matted at a discount framing store, I sold one of them and then other hangs at my moms house. Never underestimate your local goodwill.
Online is a great place too. Craigslist (in safe areas, and always be smart…meeting in a public place, taking someone with you, etc.) and sell and trade groups on Facebook are great places to find great items. Most of my artwork are pictures that I have taken or found online, I save them to my phone or computer then send them off to Social Print Studio, using their app, to be printed. They print any size on thick stock paper so its perfect for framing, plus its a really good deal and great quality. Put them in some snazzy frames (I love IKEA frames) and on the wall and you have your own art gallery that you can change anytime!
4. Do you travel often, or have you lived many places?
We love to travel, and try to do it as much as possible. I love to bring back a little trinket from each place I go, especially if I can find a vintage compass…thats one of my favorite things to collect. Its always a reminder that no matter where I am there is always another direction to go. Our favorite travel destination is Austin Texas, if you havnt been, GO! It is such a fun city, so many things to do, places to eat, food trucks to explore!! They definitely live up to the weirdness they are defined by, but in such a good way. I have gotten so much inspiration from that city and find even more each time we go. Even for just a long weekend it is well worth the travel to go.
I like to say that I have a “Gypsy Soul”, my husband agrees. Im not sure if I will ever put down roots although Philadelphia is my favorite place so far, I could see myself settling there and loving it forever. I have a really spontaneous personality and love just jumping in the car and discovering a new place. I pretty much grew up in Nashville but always somehow new that wasnt the place for me, I went on vacation to California in 2009 and a few months later I was living there, 70 and sunny all year around really is the way to live. After several years we made our way back to Nashville and it still just didnt feel right so when we got the chance to make the change to the Philly area we jumped! I always thought that Nashville was the coldest I was going to get, now I know I was wrong. We havnt regretted one second of that decision. Now we look forward to more traveling and have several trips in the planning stages.
5. Do you have any favorite interior design books?
I do! My favorite book is Create the Style You Crave on a Budget You Can Afford: The Sweet Spot Guide to Home Decor
Im all for getting a good deal and if I see something in a magazine that I love I try to find a way to do it for less. I once saw these curtains in a magazine that were a ridiculous price but they were so beautiful! I recreated them with some $30 canvas curtains from IKEA, a stencil, and metallic acrylic paint. They turned out better than I could have imagined and everyone who saw them loved them. Thats what I love about Interior Design, its not about how much you spend or what your budget for a room may be…its about the feeling that you create and the mood that the space takes you to, and that can be done on any budget.
I also love “The Handbook of Interior Design”. Its a pricey book but well worth it. I like it because it looks at Interior Design from the perspective of why and how, Why should that picture go there, or how do you create a space that is calming or inspiring?
6. Where do you hope your design talent takes you in the future?
I hope that it leads me to a career path that I love, if that means that I am in intern working for an established Interior Designer, or I find a position staging apartments and condos for viewing, it would be a career that I love, and that’s most important to me. For me, its not about a paycheck or the hours I work, I want to truly love what I do, and I am so fortunate to be in a position to have the ability to hopefully do that.
7. Do you have a favorite DIY project if so what is it?
My favorite DIY project would probably have to be my ottoman coffee table in my living room. It started out as one of those cheap, sometimes temporary, IKEA coffee tables. It had these crazy metal legs that always wobbled and would never stay tight. I removed the legs one day and noticed how great the surface of the coffee table was so i went to the fabric store and got some thick foam, cotton batting, cool fabric, trim, and nail heads for the top. I found some great legs for the table and I now have a really cool ottoman/coffee table that people think I spent a lot of money on.
8. Do you have any major projects in mind for the future?
Well that Ottoman/Coffee Table is getting ready to be revamped! A few minutes with new fabric and trim and it will look like a whole new piece! Im also getting ready to create a pantry space in our condo. I love “usable” space. Usually if I bring something new into my space it will have multiple purposes. Im going to be making the pantry from a large kitchen island with deep drawers or shelving and then open shelving above for canisters, then on the back of the island hanging hooks for wire baskets. It will give me a lot more storage space as well as more work top space near my kitchen!
My husband is begging for a bigger bar so Im thinking of creative ways to incorporate book storage/shelving into a piece that could also act as a bar space…we’ll see how that turns out, it may take some time.
I also have this huge wall in my house that is seen from the living, dining, and office area, I really want to do something fun with that. An unexpected wall color, a huge piece of artwork, some temporary (peel and stick) wallpaper in a really great pattern…something is going to happen there!
Like what you see? Amy can be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org