thursday thoughts: the psychology of design

Being a designer is my dream career field. When I tell people I’m a designer, I usually get one of a few similar reactions:

“Oh that sounds so fun!”  (It can be, but it is also hard work.)

“You can come help me pick paint colors!”  (Great. Sounds like a plan. But don’t forget we do soooo much more than just that.)

“Your home must be AMAZING!”  (Being a designer does not mean my house is automatically amazing just by default.  To have a beautiful home, you must have the money and time – you are lucky if you have both.)

Sure we are creatives and project managers.  But we are also a bit like therapists.  Clients come to us because they want guidance, advice, and/or reassurance.  They have a problem they are unable to solve on their own.  Or maybe they just want to talk it out. They have a list of wants and needs and are hiring us to fulfill them.  (No pressure, right?)  It is up to us as designers to decipher these conversations and ideas into tangible results.  And how does one do that?

The secret to success of being a designer is to “get” our clients. To truly understand them and deliver a design they never thought possible.  We must listen to what they say, and what they don’t say.  Give them a beautiful space or home that is also functional and reflection of their life and what they love.

You can see why I say I have a dream job.

This quote by Barry Dixon is what inspired today’s post:

Barry Dixon Quote

Hope everyone has a great day!  If you are a designer, take a moment to realize how amazing your job is.  For everyone else, be true to yourself and make your home a reflection of you.  Fill it with things you love and that bring you joy. If you need help with that, hire me.  :)

xo.

 

looking back before i look forward

Around this time every year, before I start planning and goaling up 2016, I find it really helpful to reflect on the last year.  I look at the accomplishments.  The people, places, and projects that made the year anything but ordinary. I try to learn from the mistakes and struggles so I can be stronger and better the next time around the sun.

Looking back on 2015, the best moments were ones where I felt in Awe.  Like being in the presence of beautiful architecture.  A pop of dramatic color.  Being inspired by plants, animals, and nature.  Going above and beyond what I thought was possible of myself.  All of these moments are what pushes me to my full potential.

2015bestnine - nataliyaborener instagram

Last year, my mantra for the year was to simplify.  Did I succeed? In some ways, I can definitely say I did.  But I have a long way to go.  I’m a complex person, so simplifying doesn’t come as an easy task. I’ve realized this goal is a lifelong one – cherishing what you have, refining what you want, and focusing on what you need.

My biggest career accomplishment was completing my NCIDQ certification.  After a conquering one final 4 month study binge and 8 hours of testing, I now can be a registered or licensed Interior Designer.  It was something I put on my career bucket list nearly 10 years ago, and it feels so good to cross it off.

Despite all of the awesomeness, 2015 wasn’t my favorite year.  I’m extremely blessed in so many aspects of this life, so it’s no big deal, just there were a lot of personal trials I’ve had to face. Relearning who you are and what you want is not easy.  Especially when you are so sure of yourself practically your whole child and adult life.  It’s like you wake up one day and everything is no longer black or white.  There’s a whole lot of grey.  Way over 50 shades.  More like 500.  (Any designer will agree!) And it’s hard to navigate your way. But the best advice I can give anybody is to stay true to yourself.  The rest will work itself out.

How was your 2015?  Great or just meh?  What was your self-discovery or favorite moment of the year?

 

 

 

 

 

 

highpoint market faves

Hi!

So last month, I was able to cross something off my design bucket list.    MTD took us girls on a 4 day trip to this little thing called Highpoint Market.

Seriously I was so excited when I found out we were going.  It has been one of my dreams since my college days at Michigan State.  To grow up and be a real legit designer and go to the biggest residential furniture trade show.

It was amazing. We found some great new lines. It was also so helpful to sit in, touch, and see the quality firsthand of some furniture pieces we’ve been eyeing for a long time.  Yes, “shopping” for work is enough to make anyone jealous, but I’m not going to lie, it was exhausting.  We covered about 6-7 miles a day on foot.  Probably the first trip I’ve ever taken and not gained weight.

Here’s some of my favorite finds from this amazing trip.   Hope you enjoy!

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IMG_3989IMG_4325IMG_4132IMG_4078IMG_4062\IMG_4083

IMG_4584IMG_4466IMG_3995IMG_4075IMG_4438IMG_4335IMG_3766IMG_3714IMG_4076IMG_4216IMG_4366IMG_4520IMG_4360IMG_3712

 

 

Lake Michigan modern farmhouse

Lake Michigan is one of my soft spots.  My memories drift back to being 19, young and in love, spending summer nights on the shore. Giant dunes and water for days, a coastline that could be mistaken for the ocean.  It was a time before social media, smartphones, and up-to-the-second updates.  Maybe we were naive to the world around us, but time just seemed to stop.  And in those moments is when you feel most alive.

When I saw this project on Lonny a couple weeks back, it hit that soft spot. Carefree and breezy, this modern farmhouse is just simply beautiful.

living room at the lake - Lonny Mag     Modern Farmhouse by Linc Thelan

Love all of the white and coastal decor that isn’t too in-your-face beachy.

Lake inspired dining room

Modern Farmhouse Kitchen

Modern Farmhouse Bath

I miss the easy lake life, the simplicity of youth.  I think that’s why I love this project so much.

Coastal bath vintage oars Pool Bath

For more pics, visit the very talented Linc Thelen’s website.