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Creating with Color…Yes Please

Let’s face it, we’ve been dragged into the drabs of neutral decor for many years…I even tried it! But now color is making a comeback and I’m so glad it is. The more I fill my own home with color, the happier it makes me. Over the past couple of months, I had the most amazing time interviewing different designers, artists, and women business owners and the thing that I learned from all of them is confidence. I need to design and decorate with confidence… going for the things I really love.

Here’s how I’m using color in my bedroom (Photo: Abby Grace Photography)

These interviews came about because I decided to put together a virtual summit for my audience. I had only attended one online summit and it was all about lettering, so when I started to think about what my summit would be, I landed on the idea of creating with color. That would be my theme and I would call it, Design Whimsy Virtual Summit: Creating with Color.

Painting by Carrie Schmitt (and some of the fabrics are from her art)

I reached out to various artist friends and asked them if they would teach something. By now you all know Carrie Schmitt, the artist I’ve collaborated with for my chairs. I have some of her paintings in my home and I’ve taken her painting course, too. She agreed to teach how to paint expressive flowers for my summit.

Carrie’s art and fabric in my home (Photo: Abby Grace Photography)

I made a new friend on Instagram named Courtney Wafzig and we did a breakdown of her home’s decor. I learned so many things from her like using blue and white in very room…I’ve never heard of that being a neutral! Now I’m buying up blue and white ginger jars like there’s no tomorrow! And don’t even get me started on her fun wallpaper throughout her home. You will be so inspired by watching this one.

Photo: Courtney Wafzig

Another artist friend that I’m presently collaborating with is Lori Siebert. She agreed to teach a session on how to transform scraps into art. So much of this involves playing and just having fun creating…pretending to be a kid again. That’s so good for us to do!

I had been in awe of TJ McGrath’s floral arrangements on Instagram. He agreed to teach his method of floral arranging….secretly I wanted to learn this! Who wouldn’t? After watching him, I feel I could create something amazing, too.

Photo: TJ McGrath

Last summer I got to meet Elyce Arons, the cofounder of the brand Frances Valentine. And she agreed to be part of my summit and allowed me to interview her. We talked about her creative process, how she brainstorms ideas, and even the fun stories behind pieces of clothing they design. Like the brand’s Petrie Pant came from Laura Petrie on the Dick Van Dyke Show. Did you know that Mary Tyler Moore was one of the first women to wear pants on TV? Stories like that came out of our interview. It was so fun!

Here’s Elyce in her Petrie Pant by Frances Valentine (photo: Frances Valentine)
Here I am in my favorite Frances Valentine dress! (photo: Abby Grace Photography)

Do you remember my camper with the fun camel wallpaper? Well, that wallpaper was designed by Katie Kime who is based out of Austin! And I met her last winter because I tagged her company in my post. And yes, she agreed to be interviewed too. We talked about her unique color choices…what’s her process for combining them? I came out of the interview with so many great ideas to try with my own designs and in my home.

My camper with Katie Kime Camel Wallpaper and Striped Fabric

Who doesn’t struggle with setting a table? I’m not talking about the boring placemat and napkins…I mean a statement table that will blow the socks off your guests and family. I reached out to my colleague, interior designer Jill Kalman to teach a session on this. She created the most over the top, but easy to do, joyful table for the summit. How fun is this?

Photo: Jill Kalman

Abbe Fenimore is the designer behind the brand Studio Ten 25 in Dallas, and I’ve been following her for years. Her bold use of pink (and all colors really) just gets me so excited. Our interview is all about how she choses large art, graphic wallpaper, and pink to design gorgeous spaces. And she will give you the confidence to do it too.

Photo: Abbe Fenimore of Studio Ten 25

Now, these are only half of the people in the summit. I haven’t even told you about Madcap Cottage‘s home tour, Tobi Fairley’s home design, handlettering/shading with Prisletters by Diana (think of the party menus you can make!), how to build an ottoman with Cobani Bleu, turning an old tire into a table with Inspired Tire, sewing your own stylist tote bag with Sewing and the City (I don’t sew, and I know I can do this after watching her), and Cara from the popular podcast Never Skip Brunch who will give you the confidence to explore color in your own home.

The summit is free if you show up live to watch on October 18-20. But you do have to register. Click here to register. If you just can’t wait, and want to start watching right now (or whenever), you can buy it for the early bird price of $29. If you’ve already registered, click here to buy it and start enjoying it today! See you on October 18!

Wendy Conklin

I'm Wendy Conklin, The Chair Stylist.

What brings me joy is helping others live more creatively. I design antique-inspired, boutique chairs, and I teach others how to do what I do. Check out my shop, services, and courses to bring more whimsy into your home and life!

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