Out & About

Behind the Scenes with Ballard Designs

Sunday, December 9th, 2012

I’ve been receiving the Ballard Designs catalog for a decade and shopping their online store for the same amount of time.  The new catalog comes in the mail five times a year and I savor the new and the classic furnishings and accessories inside the pages. 

I really love their style, European inspired but always fresh, not too stodgy or too grandma.  Just about every room in my house has something  from their collection.  Their mirrored Savon Tray Table sits in my master bathroom and I use it daily! 

kate master bathroom

 

I absolutely adore the Bellasol Mirror in our powder room.

kates powder bathroom after

 

And just recently we hung their Grand Claire chandelier in our bedroom.

master bedroom centsational girl

 

Their Mariestad chandy (no longer available) and Couture chairs sit in my dining room, and a painted a trio of their Grand Palais mirrors are hung in our family room to mimic a window.  So it goes without saying, I’m a big fan! 

I was invited to attend a behind-the-scenes glimpse at their company last week and a peek into the process of creating the products and photographing the catalog, and I was very excited!  I spent a day learning about the products that start as a “twinkle in the eye” of their team and end photographed in the final rooms depicted inside the lovely spreads inside the catalog.

ballard cover

 

The event started with a tour of the corporate facility and a peek at the upcoming Jan/Feb and Spring catalogs.  Forgive the mediocre pictures, I brought my fancy camera but not a memory card (doh) so I had to rely on my iPhone for images.

The main headquarters is in Atlanta and there all the decisions for the company are made.  Headquarters has less than 80 employees, not including fulfillment centers and the phone and online order center.   For having such a national presence, I was  surprised by the small amount of employees they rely on to make the Ballard magic happen and so impressed at their willingness to open their doors to the bloggers they invited inside.  

We spent the morning touring the main office, meeting the employees, and seeing how they pull together inspiration for upcoming collections.  They use mood boards and pin inspiration all around the office!

ballard memo

 

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Traditional Home Showhouse Tour

Monday, October 8th, 2012

Last week I was invited to the opening event for the Traditional Home Napa Valley Showhouse event and was so excited to attend!  I love to read about the Showhouses all over the country but never get a chance to visit due to distance, so I was really happy to hear Traditional Home was hosting a showhouse out here in Wine Country, one I could actually attend!

traditional home showhouse

I arrived a little late but I was able to take some pictures of the spaces before the sun went down.  When you enter you are greeted by century old hound dog statue from France.  I asked what his name was because of course every good statue of a dog requires a name.  He didn’t have one, so I dubbed him Beauregard.  It fits doesn’t it? 

beauregard beagle

 

Inside are several spaces from formal to casual decorated by both renowned and upcoming interior designers with a fresh take on Napa style.  The formal dining room featured shades of emerald green and indigo, taking a cue from the peacock on a pedestal.  This room had really great combination of color and texture, the console and lantern sconces are my favorite.  Room design by Lucas Studio Interior Design.

napa showhouse dining room

napa showhouse dining room console

 

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Coronado Charm

Thursday, September 6th, 2012

We spent last weekend in San Diego, stopping by several of our favorite places while in town.  We visit the area at least once a year since we have family and friends that live there and it’s one of our most favorite places to relax and soak up some So Cal sunshine.

One of the most charming places to stop is just outside downtown San Diego, the small city of Coronado with its famous Hotel del Coronado.

san diego palm trees

 

To get to Coronado Island, you take the bridge and along the way you get a great view of the downtown San Diego skyline.

downtown san diego view

 

The Hotel Del is a beautiful Victorian structure that draws visitors from around the world.

hotel del coronado from beach

hotel del  coronado entrance

hotel del coronado

 

 

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