HCDH + The Guild

Well, HELLO 2017! The last half of 2016 flew by so quickly that it makes me feel dizzy, mostly due to the absolutely incredible project that consumed my life from July through December - becoming the Interior Design Luminary for The Guild

Headquartered in Austin, The Guild provides stylish yet flexible housing & accommodation for those that want a truly Austin experience. While some members (StayGuilders) visit town for just a couple days, others (LiveGuilders) put down roots for a year or longer. The cross-pollination of permanent residents and out-of-town guests is what makes the Guild community so unique and interesting. They truly believe that every person who visits our beautiful city should "Live Like a Local".

The Guild's stylishly-appointed flats are located in a handful of brand-spankin' new residential buildings, each in a uniquely cool part of Austin. They take design seriously, since living spaces should be a reflection of their surrounding neighborhoods. So in July of 2016 they hired me as Interior Design Luminary to create the environments that exude the unique community spirits of these awesome neighborhoods.

Over the next few weeks I'm going to share here what my inspiration was for each location and what my process was in getting there. In the summer and fall of 2016 we took The Guild from seven units to over 60! It's been a wild ride, and we are working now to add more in Austin and beyond...

Until then, let's do this 2017!

#CurrentlyCrushing: Mixing it up with Chairish (or "Life is Too Short for Matching Dining Chairs!")

Dining rooms can be tough. They are mainly composed of a table that is as large as will fit in the room, along with as many chairs that will fit at the table. We might not use them all the time, but it is so great having a dinner party and not having to bring out folding chairs!

Dining chairs can also be pricey, and that x 6, 8 or 10 can REALLY start to add up. Plus a sea of the same chair can start to feel a little boring. So why not mix it up and have a little fun with it? This was a question that the amazing vintage resource and online retailer, Chairish, asked...and I was all too happy to answer.

Below are three approaches to mixing up your chairs that I created while exploring the drool-worthy treasure trove of dining chairs on Chairish.

Same Style, Different Color

This plan keeps the shape, size, lines, etc. the same but plays with the color and/or material for a look that gives fun variety:

  1. Pink and Orange Eames Chairs on Eiffel Bases
  2. Multicolored Livia Chairs by Gio Ponti
  3. Panton Chairs by Vitra in Black + One White

Same Color, Different Style

Here, you can completely mix up the material, size, style, etc. but keep all in the same hue to create an eclectic look that still feels cohesive:

  1. 1970's Lucite Chairs + Vintage Lucite Z Chairs
  2. Vintage Thonet Anton Lorenz Chairs + Panton Chairs in Fuchsia
  3. Mid-Century Danish Teak Chairs + Black and Natural Wishbone Chairs

Wild Card!

Here, anything goes! This is a little more difficult to achieve, so I think keeping it to two or three different pieces is less overwhelming. If you stick to the same metal color or create a color palette with pattern and two solids, it helps the look be more cohesive.

#CurrentlyCrushing: Black + White + Quirky All Over

I love color. I really do. But everyone who knows me, knows that I am obsessed with graphic black and white. Few things add that crisp energy to a room, and it always goes with everything. EVERY room in my house has some graphic black and white, and I'm amazed at how little color is in my wardrobe whenever I do laundry. 

Here is a little selection of things high-contrast that I'm obsessing over, with a whole lot of quirk thrown in because...well, because life is too short to be boring.

  1. T-Rex Head Wall Mount by Near & Deer - So there's gold where white would normally be, but I DON'T CARE. This is AWESOME.
  2. "Warning! Boston Terriers Are Addictive!" Fabric by Missy Q - I can't decide what to make with this, but it will be in my house. Maybe a new dog bed for Gilley & Gus?
  3. Black + White Plaid Woven Street Shoes by Everlane - These look so comfy and cool and they need to be on my feet.
  4. Sonny & Cher Sunnies by Pared Eyewear - And these need to be on my face. NOW.
  5. Sloth Clutch Foldover by Fossil x Opening Ceremony - And this is the hat-trick for the shoes and sunnies, and is the cutest bag I have ever seen. EVER.
  6. Grip Tray by Finell - Perfect for klutzes, the rubber bands on this tray hold drinks in place. GENIUS.
  7. Rip Black Wallpaper by Stone Textile - I cannot wait to use this in a project, and I love that it was designed by a friend! 

That's it! That's my round-up of things I am obsessing over right now. Next week, COLOR!

XO Emily

One Room Challenge Week 3 + 4: Plus Life Lessons from Kimmy Schmidt

Source:  Buzzfeed , and of course  Kimmy Schmidt

Source: Buzzfeed, and of course Kimmy Schmidt

The last two weeks have been rough. I'm still hobbling about with the bum knee and sprained ankle. I'm juggling several projects in different stages, which is always first priority, and some other things have decided to cause further problems, as life does. And Prince died, which gave me all the sads on Week 3. So I've been tweaking my plans for the High Contrast Design House Headquarters, trying to heal and refocus my energy while binge-watching all of Kimmy Schmidt Season 2. And that helped my spirit SO MUCH.


I am vowing to get the floors painted this weekend. I'm packing up the office shelves and getting the room ready to be cleared right now. We will be ripping up that stank carpet and painting those walls WHITE! Next week I hope to get accomplished the following:

  • Close to having the floors finished, either painted stripes of vinyl tiles (probably paint)
  • Get current shelving sold on Craigslist 
  • Start working on custom DIY lighting
  • Have some of those things done and photographed for this blog!

So here's a few more ideas I'm thinking about:

I am going to make a custom lightbox at some point - super excited about this!  (source)

I am going to make a custom lightbox at some point - super excited about this! (source)

Neon washi tape to make the bad molding on the door look bad in a good way. ( source )

Neon washi tape to make the bad molding on the door look bad in a good way. (source)

tiny neon cacti - YES! ( source )

tiny neon cacti - YES! (source)

And because of the lack of natural light, some obviously fake & funky cacti. ( source )

And because of the lack of natural light, some obviously fake & funky cacti. (source)

Until then, wish me luck!