Thursday, June 23, 2016

DesignHER Gives Vivid Hue a 'Nod'

When I was in middle school, there was a talented and artistic "upperclassman" (eight grader) whom I admired from afar.  Everything she touched with her paint brush turned into a beautiful masterpiece.  Her work had meaning and substance.  I silently kept notes on how she operated and I observed how she performed her craft.   She seemed out of my league and I was pretty sure I was non-existent in her world.  Mid-year, our school held an art show.  I looked for opportunities to be involved with anything having to do with art and so I volunteered to help hang the wall gallery, including some of her work.  During the show,  she approached me and inquired if I'd had involvement in setting up the display.  I nervously nodded yes.  "I love how you set up the gallery," she said.

In my mind, it was the equivalent of winning an academy award.  Ok, maybe that's overly dramatic.  But my point is, I was so thrilled to have that praise from someone I admired so much that I was filled with dancing butterflies inside my tummy.   Really, I was thinking, "Wow, that's pretty neat."

Yesterday I had a similar moment of "wow, that's pretty neat" when I learned that Julianne Taylor (Creative Director + Founder of Taylor Burke Home) gave lil' ole Vivid Hue Home a mention in her DesignHer book that she released earlier this year.

Photo Courtesy of DesignHER and Taylor Burke Home

Julianne is a sweet Southern gal from South Carolina who spent almost a decade living abroad and further enriching her interior design knowledge.  This experience inspired her to establish Taylor Burke Home,  a modern and luxury furniture brand company.  During my years as "just a home decor blogger," I kept tabs on the Taylor Burke brand through social media.  When I opened the Vivid Hue Home retail shop, I knew immediately I wanted to bring Taylor Burke Home to my area of Connecticut.

Photo Courtesy of DesignHER and Taylor Burke Home

We launched the shop in 2015 with Taylor Burke Home's Dallas Sofa along with their fabulous Beaufort Bamboo Chair upholstered in Cotton + Quill's Midnight Koi custom fabric).

Photo Courtesy of Vivid Hue Home

Earlier this year, Julianne released a truly inspiring design book called DesignHER which highlights 35 female entrepreneurs that are shaping today's home decor industry.  Each have launched their own businesses and pursued their true passions in design and are making quite a statement in the design arena.  The book celebrates many of the designers that we offer in our shop and have become friends with including Roxy's Society Social  and Mary Catherine's Cotton + Quill. and Meg's Meg Braff Designs.  

As a side story, ya'll know that I have long been a fan of Meg Braff and her incredible wallpaper designs.  I have used her Up In a Tree in my mudroom,  her Roxy in Navy in my daughter's room and her Vintage Trellis in the Vivid Hue Home shop.

So where do I fit in?  Well I don't want to steal the spotlight from these talented ladies, but I do want to share my butterflies-in-my-tummy- that's so cool moment.

Yesterday one of my fabulous clients (S.C) brought to my attention that our shop gets a mention in Julianne Taylor's DesignHER book under Meg Braff's feature!

Photo Courtesy of Sheila Casey

"I can recall seeing Meg Braff published in every magazine under the sun for as long as I can remember.  Then the gorgeous green trellis wallpaper installed in the Farmington, Connecticut retail store, Vivid Hue Home, alerted me to the extent of her talents.  A beautiful photo of our Kings Grant Chairs in ebony with zebra print cowhide placed in front of Braff's wallpaper was Instagrammed across the universe.  It has me gasping."  

-  Julianne Taylor, Taylor Burke Home

Here is the photo that Julianne was referencing: 

Photo Courtesy of Vivid Hue Home

There is a funny backstory about the Meg Braff install in the shop.  Our cottage is an historical building and the land lord made it expressly clear that I needed to maintain the integrity of the shop in the same state as how I inherited it.  The trouble was, the walls were a non-historical knotty pine and there was no easy way I could envision selling my colorful products within their confines.  I had to get creative with hanging the paper.  Here's the rest of the story about the evolution of the Meg Braff wallpaper here

Here are more shots of Meg Braff's wallpaper in the Vivid Hue Home shop.  

Thank you, Julianne, for your sweet nod to Vivid Hue Home in your book.  Though I know the props really go towards Meg Braff for her brilliant designs, I am thrilled to have the mention.  In my mind, "it's pretty neat."  So thank you.

And for those of you that would like to delve into the DesignHER book in more detail, of course I am carrying it in my shop.  You can also purchase on Amazon or directly from Taylor Burke Home.  




Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Everything's Coming Up Tassels

Tassels have been prevalent in fashion for some time now, but it seems they are growing bigger and more daring this season.   The heftier and more bold, the better for me!

I love that they can be added to handbags, shoes, necklaces, and other fashion accessories.  And because fashion tends to drive trends in home decor as well, you'll notice that the tassel trend has become popular in decor, too.

I'm obsessed with tassels this spring and it shows in what I've curated for Vivid Hue and my personal closet.

This is the ultimate resort tote.  It's perfect for carrying towels or items down for the beach.  The tassels are colorful raffia.

Photo Courtesy of Vivid Hue Home in retail shop

I love this cotton clutch for it's summer colors and embroidery.  The cotton tassel with beaded accents just adds an extra flair.

Photo by Vivid Hue Home on Dransfield Ross Grosgrain Chair
During a recent weekend getaway with my college girlfriends, I spotted these flats.  The fringed tassels are over the top but the sandal is so bohemian chic I couldn't resist.  I scooped these up for my own!

Photo courtesy of Vivid Hue Home- Tory Burch Weaver Tassel Sandal in Brown

 This spring, we introduced our very own collection of Vivid Hue Home custom tassel necklaces.

The gals over at Pretty Gritty Girls loved them so much that they asked me make one for each of them (there are seven) for a trip to Mexico.  

Of course, fashion trends usually transcend into home decor trends and tassels are cropping up on pillows, throws, drapery and more!  One of our favorite designer brands, Cotton and Quill, specializes in custom designed textiles for decorative pillows, linens, upholstery fabric and accessories.   They always adorn their unique pillows with fun accents, like these homemade tassels.

Photo courtesy of Vivid Hue Home

Check back soon for additional themes I'm crazy about this spring. 
For instant insight into what we're featuring in the shop, please follow our instagram!  


Saturday, March 26, 2016

You Need This Place

I opened Vivid Hue Home ten months ago.  Initially it was to satisfy my dream of owning a gift shop and to be able to curate colorful and beautiful items for the home.  I love home decor.  I love shopping.  I love finding unique products.

I've realized that this initiative has become much more for me.  I have met tremendous people during this journey.  My customers have become regulars, and friends.  They are no longer anonymous faces that just come to buy greeting cards.  My support staff has become part of the VHH team.   They don't just price merchandise and sell pillows; they are often my sounding board for business and personal endeavors.

The other day, I was at the shop working with AC, my 'right hand woman."  We were arranging new inventory of gurgling fish pitchers into a colorful display when I received a troubling personal call.  I hung up the phone,  fought back tears and took a deep breath.  In an attempt to delay the stinging reality of the news I'd just received, I turned back to AC,  in auto pilot mode,  "okay, so the tangerine needs to go next to the coral.  How bout the oatmeal next to the kiwi green?"  She understood what I was doing and looked back at me with sympathy and simply said, "You need this place."

I didn't realize it until this point.  But, it's so true.

I don't share my life on social media on a deeply personal level.  Partly because we are all facing "something" and what makes my road more difficult than anyone else's?   Also partly because I have an obligation to preserve and protect my family's privacy.  But, in an effort to protect that privacy, it can often feel like our family is isolated and living in a secret world.

I have a seven year old that is trying to navigate through life with sensory processing disorder (among other diagnoses).  Her nervous system has to work harder to interpret senses and turn them into appropriate responses.  For her, if she doesn't keep her body regulated and calm, she risks violent tantrums and episodes.  She has to work much harder than most people for her body to stay regulated and respond in a typical, appropriate manor.   Together, we have tried to empower her with a toolbox of techniques to accomplish this task, including behavioral therapy, occupational therapy, social skill building, and her growing maturity as she gets older.

My daughter's diagnosis is her own but she is not 'in this' alone.  As her parents, EG and I are responsible to nurture, support, protect and provide resources for her so that she can grow in to a healthy and happy young woman.   When she is disregulated, our entire family is impacted.  Sometimes it gets messy.

So while Vivid Hue is just a gift shop filled with colorful fun products, it is also my sanctuary.

It's a place where I can let my mind wander for a smidge.   My mind is never far from my daughter (and my entire family), but it's nice to have an outlet where I get to focus on making pretty bows and helping a customer decide between a turquoise gurgle pitcher or the coral one.

I need this place.

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