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Guest Post: Behind the Scenes

First of all, thanks for all of your kind words related to my previous post.  I'm feeling relieved of the pressure already.  I really appreciate your understanding.  Of course wouldn't you know, the same week I move to once per week posts, I actually have more than one to share. Figures.  Oh well, consider it a bonus.
It's hard to believe that I've been blogging for Habitat ReStore for over a year now.  I just love my ReStore blog sisters.  We got together last week for a little strategy session and I'm excited about what's in store for the remainder of this year.  Hop on over to the Habitat ReStore blog to get the inside scoop.  I'm sharing a little more about the whole gang. Click HERE.

Left to Right: Me, Lauren Shaw, Rachel Sutherland, Jennifer Burnham and Donna Scott


"We Need to Talk"

Those are never the best words to hear, are they?  You immediately brace yourself for something horrible when you hear those four dreaded words.  Right?  Well, take a deep breath.  It's not THAT deep.  I just need to level with you guys a bit.  The fact is, I'm tired and overextended.  There, I said it.

You see, I believe in integrity. PERIOD.  If you know me, you know that when I say I'm going to do something, I do it. So when I set out to start a design blog, and committed to blogging 3-5 per week, that's exactly what I did. For the past two and a half years, in fact.

That is, until my design business took off...

I became a blog partner with Habitat ReStore...
my design school classes got more difficult...

and I received a promotion at work.

To say that I'm busy would be a gross understatement.  Some days I barely have time to breathe (at least it feels that way).  It's time for me to be realistic with myself and with you. 

I believe I've said it here before, but when I started this blog, it was just an outlet for me to share my design ideas, inspiration and budget-friendly projects.   I never intended to become a professional blogger.  Truth is, I don't even like writing that much.  I set out to become an Interior Designer and I'm making huge strides in that department. 

However, I'm starting to feel like blogging is slowing me down.  It was different in the beginning, when the client projects were few and far between. I had plenty of free time to blog about small improvements or seasonal projects I did around my house.

However, these days I'm lucky to get to sit down for a few at my house, let alone decorate for the changing seasons.  My evenings are literally packed with homework, research for client projects, email inquiries and bargain shopping runs. That just doesn't leave tons of time for blogging.  And FYI, blogging takes TONS of time. 

So, what does this all mean?  Basically,  I think I need to set a more manageable blogging goal.  I've given it some thought and I think once per week is likely all I can handle right now.  I know some of you are probably thinking, "Ok. Big deal."  Well remember, I'm a woman of integrity and if I say I'm going to do it, I do it.  So, only blogging once per week when I said (to myself) I'd blog at least 3 times per week just isn't cutting it.  I have to let myself of the hook and release myself from the feeling that I'm letting you guys down when I can't muster enough energy to squeeze out a lack-luster post at 11:15 p.m. 

Trust me, I'll do my best to make my once per week post the very best it can be.  I will also continue to blog for Habitat ReStore twice per month and will be sure to link you to those posts as well.  Therefore, some weeks you'll get more than a single post. 

I hope you understand.  I'm just one person and unfortunately I only get 24 hours/day. I tried to negotiate for more, but The Lord didn't go for it.  : )

If you want to know what's going on with me during the times I'm not blogging.  Please follow along with me on social media.  Hint: I'm most active on Instagram.

Until next time... Or should I say next week?

"New Headshots and New Things in Store"

Can you guys believe it's mid-September already?  Whoa!  I actually started pulling out some of the Fall d├ęcor this weekend.  Honestly, I'm not a big Autumn decorator.  I do a little, but I save my energy for Christmas.  Nevertheless, I digress.  I thought I'd share with you guys the result of my recent photo shoot. This time, it wasn't for a space I decorated but for me.  Thanks to The Queen City Style and a recent blog giveaway, I was able to get new headshots! 

Whitley ran a promotion on her blog and the winner received a free photo session with her awesome photographer Donna Jernigan.  The winner was me!!  You can check out Donna's work HERE

I was super excited, since it's been nearly 3 years since I had my first photos captured for the website and social media.

 It was definitely time to step it up a notch.  I'm in the early stages of putting together a Dwell by Cheryl website (this is a blog site) and I needed professional photos that showcase me, the professional. 

I'd say, the most difficult part was deciding where to take the photos.  I knew I wanted them in an interior space and coordinating with a past client just seemed a bit much.  I decided to shoot at home and in the end figured the living room was the best space.  It's my favorite after all, at least for the moment.

Then, I needed to decide on an outfit.  I wanted something, obviously, that worked well in the space, expressed my personal style and that wasn't too dressy or too casual. 

With a little virtual assistance from stylist extraordinaire, Whitley Hamlin, we settled on this....

Working with Donna was so much fun.  It really is amazing how many different looks your face can evoke.  You should've heard the adjectives I used to describe some of my faces.  I mean, each shot was similar but I felt I conveyed something very different in each one.  Weird, huh?

After reviewing dozens of options, I landed on the top three.  One that I think makes me look "nice", like someone you'd want to work with or hang out with.  Another that says I'm "fun" and the money shot that says I'm competent (like, "I got this").

So, here they are....

I'd love to know what you think.  Instagram has already spoken, but I won't tell you which was their favorite (or mine). 
I think I'm going to hold off on using them until the website launch, but I wanted you to get a little preview of what's to come. 
Happy Tuesday!

Guest Post: Take Two

As a designer and small business owner, I can't tell you how much I rely on social media to establish brand identity and to attract new clients.  However, one of the biggest benefits has been developing a social network of like-minded, design enthusiasts most of whom I've never met.  I get so much inspiration, encouragement and support from other designers through social media.  It has truly become a virtual support system.  One of the perks of connecting with other bloggers is the opportunity to guest post on each other's blogs.  Since we each have our own dedicated followers, it's nice to mix things up a bit and feature other design professionals. 

Apparently, it's a guest post kind of week, so I'm over on fellow Charlottean, Beth Barden's Design Post Interiors blog sharing in her Take Two Series.  Beth asked me to share the answers to two thought provoking questions an one pretty fun bonus question.  Click HERE to check it out and this photo will make a little more sense.

Happy Friday!!!

ReStore Guest Post: Fabric Takes the Lead

Happy Hump Day!  I'm over on the ReStore blog sharing a little insight on how I typically begin my design projects.  Click HERE to check it out! 
Until next time....

"Deal Seeking"

Sorry about the radio silence last week. I'm not sure where the weeks go.  They just seem to fly by.  I've been doing quite a bit of deal seeking lately and have scored some pretty awesome finds.  Last week, I extended my Labor Day weekend and took a little trip to Asheboro, NC.  I heard they had some great antique malls, so I decided to check it out for myself. 
I walk in the front door of the first stop and "BAM!" I'm hit by this set of brass nesting tables for $35.  Wow!  A little Instagram poll confirmed that this deal was too good to pass on.   
Needless to say, they made their way back to my house and I LOVE them!  Not sure if this is where they'll stay, but you can't beat a good set of nesting tables.
They're so very versatile and I can see me using them for years to come. 
Prior to the Asheboro excursion, a quick stop in one of my favorite Goodwill locations yielded these vintage lovelies.
I have a thing for lamps and really didn't need these, but for $6.99 each I couldn't leave them behind.
A little switcheroo and I found the perfect spot for them in my home office.
Loving how this space is coming together.  I need a shorter harp on the lamp on the right and I've ordered vintage finials as well.  I'll give you a little update on the office project soon.

Apparently, my name is Cheryl and I'm addicted to brass animals.  I ran into this brass horse this weekend at the Metrolina Expo Antiques and Collectibles Show and it just jumped in my tote bag (after I gave the vendor $6 of course).  This is the last one, I promise.  Any more brass animals and it's going to look like a zoo in here. 

Hands down, the best deal I've scored lately was this bolt of 14 yards of Schumacher's iconic Chintz, Pyne Hollyhock fabric.  I paid just $49!  That's $3.50/yard!  Just so you know what a big deal that is, here's a site selling drapery panels for $1000/pair.
Lynn Chalk
Unreal!! And just in case you think I'm a little nutty for even wanting Chintz fabric, check out the same fabric in these stunning spaces.
Sherry Hart Designs

Lonny Magazine
I'm holding on to this for my Master Bedroom.  It's just about time for that space to get an entirely new look.
Until next time....

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