Designer Crush

Yesterday, I spent more than a few hours going over my finances from 2013. Not because I wanted to, but because I was selected AT RANDOM to undergo an excruciating line by line, item by item,  IRS audit.  Yes, my worst nightmare.  Actually, I am being a bit dramatic but still, it is definitely on the list of things you would not wish upon your worst enemy.  2013 was a tough year for me and there is some irony in the fact that I am being forced to re-live it through this very detailed audit. Thankfully, I have a wonderful accountant, named Laura, who is not only smart but also very kind and understanding to help me through this ordeal. After meeting with Laura, I decided that I needed a reward to look forward to as I had several hours of numbers yet to plow through before I was finished for the day. 

So, what do I do when I need a reward?  I pop into my local bookstore and check out the latest design books.  I have a bit of a design book addiction.  It is not enough to look at the beautiful images online or even thumb through them in the bookstore.  I must hold them, touch them, take them home with me where I can look at them whenever I need a jolt of beauty.  I love design books so much that I would rather own a beautiful new book than a piece of jewelry.

 

 Three months after I married Stu, I celebrated a birthday.  He asked me what I would like for my birthday (very smart man) and I told him that I would love a new design book.  As he knows that I already own a few and can be a bit picky, he asked me to make a list for him of the books that I might like.  Great idea!  So, I set to work, looking online at what had been recently published and what gaps I had in my collection. A few hours later, I handed him a list of a dozen or so titles that looked interesting.  

A few weeks later, I arrived home from work and found flowers, a bottle of wine, a new candle and some chocolate displayed on the table along with two design books.  My heart sank when I looked at the titles as they were not among the dozen that I had given him.  Moreover,  I knew that they stunk because I had already checked them out at the local bookstore!  Thanks, I said weakly, trying to hide my disappointment.  But I didn't do a good job because when he asked if I liked them, I asked him if they could be returned and exchanged!  That was a first for me.  I have never been able to say exactly what I am thinking to anyone before I met Stu.  He laughed!  Off we went to a lovely birthday dinner at our favorite restaurant.  When we came home to have cake, he asked me to sit at the table and close my eyes.  I was confused because I had already received my gift.  What was he up to?  Rather than protest, I did as I was told (another first!) and I closed my eyes.  Thud.  "Okay, open your eyes", Stu commanded.  When I opened my eyes, I saw a stack of design books in front of me. It was so high I could barely see over it!  My eyes filled with tears.  He had bought every single book that was on my list! I was overwhelmed with the generosity of this gift.  Never in my wildest dreams did I expect to get more than one or two books.  My heart welled with joy at the thought of reading and savoring  each one.   More importantly, I felt immense relief knowing that I was understood and that my husband truly gets me!

But I digress. Yesterday I found a book that so speaks to me that I feel like this designer and I are kindred spirits.  Her name is Tricia Foley and I have a designer crush on her. 

The elegant simplicity of her work is stunning and I share her love of white, old houses and working from home. Here are some photos from this book that inspire me today. 

Wood, white walls, slipcovers and plain windows.  This shows such restraint.  I must remember this the next time I feel compelled to add a pillow!

Wood, white walls, slipcovers and plain windows.  This shows such restraint.  I must remember this the next time I feel compelled to add a pillow!

I love the simple garden furniture in this light filled room. And can't you imagine spending some time reading on that sofa?

I love the simple garden furniture in this light filled room. And can't you imagine spending some time reading on that sofa?

This is a beautiful composition.  Love love love it. 

This is a beautiful composition.  Love love love it. 

The shutters open on the top and the dark beams against the white white ceiling...perfection. 

The shutters open on the top and the dark beams against the white white ceiling...perfection. 

The real wood burning fireplace, the scrubbed antique pine floors, the sturdy leather arm chair and the basket filled with reading material make me want to crawl inside this photo. 

The real wood burning fireplace, the scrubbed antique pine floors, the sturdy leather arm chair and the basket filled with reading material make me want to crawl inside this photo. 

Linen sofa, a jumble of books on simple shelves, and the light entering into the room through the shutters- sigh.    

Linen sofa, a jumble of books on simple shelves, and the light entering into the room through the shutters- sigh.  

 

I find it hard to tear myself away from her world.  But I have work to do now. Clients are waiting for designs. I reluctantly close the book, but know that Tricia Foley's world awaits anytime I want to return.