I was honored this week to be inducted into the North San Diego division of Soroptimist International.  I’ve been desiring for a place to give back, and in particular to women and children in need, a passion of mine.

Soroptimist’s are a global women’s organization working to improve the lives of women and girls through programs leading to social and economic empowerment.

In particular, the North San Diego Soroptimist club works together with local agencies on a Transitional Housing Program for domestic violence survivors.  This 18-month program moves families from dependency and abuse to a safe, self-sustaining life by providing housing, financial help and mentoring.  I will be working closely within this group in hopes of being able to provide our studios skills when furnishing these new homes.

Looking forward to giving back and encouraging women who just need a helping hand to get on their feet.

Induction Ceremony PIC

L to R – Pam Warnock, Yours Truly, Liz Bartoli




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This past summer we were in the middle of remodeling project for one of our clients when they surprised us with a new project.  The assembly and interior design of TWO life sized playhouses.  I must admit this was a new challenge for me, but one that I found really exciting.

Delivery - So Many Pieces

(Above) – This is how the houses were delivered, in lots and lots and lots of pieces.  The playhouses did come with directions, but they were limited in details.  Our wonderful General Contractor was a miracle man when putting these two houses together.


The Building Process

Once we started assembling these houses the clients informed us that they wanted all of the walls finished with insulation and drywall, wood floors and electricity.  I think the only thing we ended up not having was running water.


When we first started this project it was intended for lil’ munchkins, aka children, but in the end the owner decided to use the larger playhouse as a meditation room.


I wanted to include this photo (above) so you could see the scale of the house with an adult standing up close.


When it came time to do the interior of this  Rancho Santa Fe large playhouse, the owner wanted a cozy cabin feel and I think we accomplished that task without feeling to dark.  We did design 13 functional flat roman shades which also allows for a calming place for meditation by blocking most light and a lot of noise.   By the way, that chair is so comfortable, anyone could sit there for hours and read a book, or just enjoy some quiet time.


Then there was the sleeping loft.  We had a one piece cushion made that is nearly the size of a twin bed.  This cushion is 4″ in height which is incredibly comfortable for an afternoon nap or a great place to read a book.  All of those custom pillows are just the icing on the cake.


The simple red area rug pulls together the cabin look without being to bold. Take note on how at least one leg of the ottoman is sitting on the area rug.  This is an important designer touch so you can avoid that look of having the rug look like it’s floating in the room.

See those large doors to the right?  We custom made those to accommodate an adult.  The little child sized door on the front of the house is cute, and functional, but not practical for the adult visitors.


What is that to the far left?  Yep, it’s a fireplace that actually puts out heat and is operated with a remote control.

 The finishing touch for this meditation room.

Say No to Brown

Here is the other playhouse, with the WRONG color of paint.  Just another example of how a designer can ultimately help you save money.  You see, we worked on these houses while the client was out of the country and were making daily trips to the construction, upon the request of the client.  This enabled us to catch the error and get it corrected the next day.


Once we changed the paint color, it all came together.  A hideaway that that is every little girls dream.


We have yet to do the interior design on this charming little playhouse.  When we do get this design finished we’ll be sure to share the results here.   This playhouse is about half the size of the other house, but it still has a napping loft just like the other playhouse.

Full Size Playhouses

The Finish Project – A Life Sized Playhouse

So what do  you think?  If you are interested in the playhouses here is the link to large playhouse (click here), I’m not sure where the smaller  playhouse came from.  Please keep in mind that we highly customized both of these playhouses, so the “kits” will not end up looking like those in our pictures.

I would really love to hear your comments, or just drop me a note to let me know you stopped by and said “hi”.




Sharing is Caring


Many of you have already met my incredible assistant Maryann, but I thought it was time for a formal introduction.

Maryann came to me via Michaels Arts & Crafts parking lot.  Yep, it’s true.  Maryann had over heard my husband and myself laughing and having a good time in the local parking lot, a little over two years ago.   When she heard us having a good time she looked over and saw our company vehicle and copied down the phone number thinking she would like to work for a company that can laugh and enjoy life.

Maryann then emailed and called me shortly after that and the rest is history.  The two of us are perfectionists and both have a huge desire to please our clients so the fact that Maryann is now a part of our team has been a win-win.

Often you will find Maryann dropping off samples at clients homes, meeting some of our crew out on a job, delivering fabric, etc.

Maryann also works as a Personal Assistant for other professional women so if you need someone who is trust worthy and a hard worker, just give me a call and I’ll get you her contact information.


There she is . . . . the world’s best assistant.

Recently we had our new company t-shirts and working aprons arrive, Maryann was such a trooper to put on her new shirt and apron and pose for a picture!  She even included some props. Maryann really is the best and has been a huge blessing to our team.

Maryann and Ron

Then there is this man, I’ll call him Ron.  He has been so much fun to work with and even insisted on posing for a picture with our Mrs. Maryann.  You see, this was the first day we wore our new shirts and Ron was insistent that we share them with the world.

How did we meet Ron?  – Recently Ron’s daughter contacted us as Ron was moving to San Diego and needed help hanging and placing hundreds of pieces of artwork that he had gathered from his various trips around the world.   Once I met with Ron I knew we would be great together.  We quickly got started with hanging his art and doing a mini-remodel on his “new” kitchen.

Upon my first meeting with Ron I knew we were in for a good time!  You see Ron has the best sense of humor and he also adored his late wife, two attributes that I highly admire.  Ron is one of those guys that brings out the best in everyone.


We refaced nearly all of Ron’s kitchen cabinets so that he could display all of the china that he and his wife had purchased together.  Maryann and I spent several hours prepping the new cabinets for the new displays.

Maryann - Assistant

Maryann just loves when I get out the camera . . . maybe not, but I certainly appreciate her dedication and attention to our customer’s needs.

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