Monday, January 1, 2018

my {writing} year in review

Happy New Year from bright and below-freezing Rhode Island!

Last night at the stroke of midnight the idea of a new chapter began. 2017 was filled with many good things but was also disappointing in some ways both personally, nationally, and globally, and I'm more than ready to flip the page. Scanning through my Instagram feed -- which serves as a nice visual short-hand -- I realized that as a working writer, the year was better than I first recalled. I'm generally preoccupied with what piece of work is coming out next and don't always take that moment to celebrate making good use of my English degree from Rhode Island College to write about subjects near and dear to my heart: making pretty spaces and things. This post is more like my own diary so if it feels self-indulgent, you've been warned. ;)

The "IKEA book" was released in French in February and while I never received or purchased a copy (and I believe there's an edition in Korean as well), it still counts as having a book out in 2017, oui?!

I was contacted in late 2016 by USA TODAY to provide a quote for their annual HOME magazine, and what began as a blurb turned into a sidebar for the issue that was at my local market by March.

I always enjoy writing "home tours," which generally begin with my receiving photographs and interviewing homeowners about what lead to their decorating choices. For the Spring issue of Prairie Style, Kelly Keen shared about the makeover her home received from pals Amie and Jolie Sikes, better known as Junk Gypsy, for "Rustic Redo." For "Southwest Sanctuary" I wrote about the shared Albuquerque vacation home of sisters Kathy Fredrickson and Sarah DiPaolo. Very fun chatting with creative homeowners around the country!

I provided two projects with essays and instructions to Somerset Home for Spring 2017: an altered picture frame and stamped insert titled "Explore More," and jars painted in a mix of decoupage medium and food coloring in "Rose-Colored Glasses."

A trip to Home Depot for a new washing machine lead me to helping myself to a few laminate samples and tinkering them into what would become "Go With the Grain," my first contribution to GreenCraft.

The distressed sign at a farm stand served as inspiration for a Somerset Life how-to detailed in the blog post farm stands and newsstands.

I revisited memories of Paris and returned to my tinkering origins of fabric strips, paint and tin cans for "Les Jolies Pendules" in Somerset Home, Autumn 2017.

I always love writing about homes where space is an issue, like Rachel Mullen's Parisian-inspired Minnesota house in "Practical Sophistication" for French Country Style.

On newsstands now is my article "No Place Like Home" in the premiere issue of Modern Country, which showcases the less-is-more aesthetic of Melisa James' Boise apartment -- with some really cool space-saving tricks!

For the Winter 2017 issue of Prairie Style, I used one of my favorite words (plucky) in "Flown the Coop" about Tiffany Eckhardt's shop in Burton, Texas; wrote about Betsy Johnson Anderson's cozy cabin by the Colorado River in "Family Heirloom" and the fun-meets-utilitarian style of Jim Healy's Connecticut home in "Collected Wisdom."

Using a trio of hand mirrors from Dollar Tree, paper napkins and glue, I wrote, styled and photographed the "Vanity Project" tutorial for the Summer 2017 issue of Romantic Country.

I created the Cath Kidston-inspired decorated picture frame tutorial "British Accent" for the May issue of Romantic Homes.

For Rustic Weddings I interviewed new-bride Summer Hamrick for an article that showcased her beautiful but down-to-earth wedding held at a state park in South Carolina.

Pernilla Frazier's Pawtuxet home in "Mix Master" for Vintage Style provided an opportunity to shine a spotlight on Rhode Island friends and small businesses.

It was so special for me to welcome the return of my fairy godmother Fifi O'Neill, to my little house along with her longtime photographer Mark Lohman and his son Taylor, to style and shoot for the Spring 2018 Romantic CountryOn newsstands now, the eight-page spread titled "A Garden of Fresh Ideas" was written by Sandy Soria, and includes the sewing magic of my dear friend Lorraine Miranda. The issue also includes six DIY projects that appear toward the back of the issue as well as the two-page "Playing House," all about using a dollhouse as your own design practice space, that I penned.

So, what's in store for the year ahead? Well, my fingers are crossed about a book proposal and I just submitted two articles for the next issue of Boho Style, but other than that, blank pages await!

I have selected flourish as my word for 2018. May we all flourish in the year ahead! As always, thank you for visiting and reading!