Let's Get Back To Business
Well, well, well...Did you miss me? I most certainly have missed connecting with all of you via my written blogposts. OMG what a year 2017 has been already and I must say a very exhausting, yet productive one with projects on top of projects galore!! And, I definitely don't see 2018 being any less busy or any less productive. I mean, I'd definitely much rather a productive year, executing and conquering the many things and projects on my to do list. However, this ambitious woman is TIRED and long over-due for a good NAP!!! But you know, the way my life is set-up, these ambitions and these many projects most certainly won't happen on their own without hard work put into them and sacrifices made for them. Sooooo, yeah that much needed nap may just have to wait a tad bit longer. 😩
Anyways...I promise to try and not make this post super long, as they'll be more future blogposts released this Fall Season written in my usual very detailed, thorough and story driven writing style. I mean c'mon, you should all know by now that I'm a writer at heart. And, for those of you who don't know, now is the perfect time for me introduce myself to newcomers to my page, and also to re-introduce myself to my loyal followers. Allow me to catch you up to speed...
If this is your first time ever visiting my design blog or first time ever stumbling across my page, or just your first time ever hearing about my brand...to you I say, Welcome to Allured By Design. Even better, I actually have a welcome blogpost that launched during the debut of my blog last year. I highly encourage you to please read up on that particular post. You know, get a little bit more familiar with me and my story and how this all came to be, by clicking here.
In the meantime, let's get everyone all caught up from last year to this year. Yes, I know I said this post wouldn't be super long and I"m still holding onto that, or at least trying to, lol. But I mean, I do have to tell some type of a story. In the famous words of Golden Girl, Blanche Devereaux - "I'm from the South" and not telling or sharing somewhat of a compelling story would just simply go against my Southern Belle nature. So follow along and let's get into it.
So last year around this same time, I was preparing for the launch of this very exciting project near and dear to my heart. Prepping to finally share with the world one of my greatest passions, which is my obsessive love for all things Interior Decorating and Design. My blog and brand launched on October 4, 2016. I invited everyone into my design world by opening me and my husband's home officially dubbed as #HousePiazza, and began sharing curated looks in our home (which I utilize as my main portfolio) designed, decorated and styled by me. In addition, I invited everyone to come along a design journey with me...to share in my passion and joy, to learn things about me, to learn things with me and to simply just have fun by discovering and unveiling as much as we all possibly could in this beautiful world of Interiors, Home Decor and Interior Design.
I had roughly four to five months of committed and dedicated time to give to my new followers that hopped along this journey with me. What? Only four to five months, what in the blog hell?!?!? Like what design blogger does that, or any blogger for that matter are some of the few questions I'm sure you're all asking. I know, I know...but let me explain. My situation was very special and different and I shared all of that in my very first welcome post. This is yet another opportunity and plug to read up on that post. Once again, click here. Gotta love me! 😉
So I'm a professional filmmaker with fourteen years of experience in the business. Outside of producing some of my own independent projects, I work as one of the three Coordinators...either Production Coordinator, Assistant Production Coordinator or Travel Coordinator on a variety of film and television projects. I work extremely long and demanding hours and I'm typically contracted to work anywhere between four weeks to six months or longer to coordinate and manage the production logistics for a show.
Right before I launched my blog last year, I'd just come off of working six months coordinating both production and travel logistics for the first season of Queen Sugar, which airs on OWN and also Executive Produced by both Oprah Winfrey and Ava DuVernay. I knew more than likely I'd possibly be offered to return and join the production team once more to coordinate Season 2. And, as I thought the opportunity did present itself and I accepted. As much as I badly wanted take the jump and leap of faith to solely focus on growing my blog audience and brand, logistically from a financial standpoint...it was just a smart financial move to secure more money (or as they say in the hip-hop world, "secure the bag") for all of the many design projects I intended to pour into my brand and to further expand my portfolio.
Believe me there were many many many times I questioned if I was doing the right thing, as I knew that coordinating another season would put me on a hiatus from blogging. I worried if my followers would forget about me, if they'd think I was a fluke or a one-hit wonder...if my brand would ever fully mature, grow, evolve and expand the way that I desire for it to do and beyond. But, ultimately I knew in the end this would be a sacrifice worth making. And,
knowing that is precisely what gave me a sense of peace and comfort in not only making, but also sticking to my decision.
When I launched Allured By Design last year, I can't say that I was really ready or prepared for such immediate inquiries. I seriously wasn't. And, boy did they come. I was merely opening up a door to share my love for all things design, but honestly never really considered what opportunities may present themselves to me. It's typical nature for women I believe to not just jump head into anything. We tend to operate quite differently from men. Generally, I believe most women always want to make sure we've done our homework first and that we're as prepared as we can possibly be, even over prepared if need be. But we want to make sure we have all of the tools, knowledge, understanding and TIME...in addition to being as adequately equipped as possible before taking on any project. And, if you're a worry wart like myself, being prepared and making preparations goes to a whole different level, trust me!
As I was saying, I had quite a few inquiries coming in after last year's launch and I absolutely HATED being in a position to have to tell people no. I badly wanted to be able to take on every opportunity and project that was coming my way. However, my reality was simply that time was NOT on my side. As I mentioned, I had a good four to five months to share and curate detailed snippets of #HousePiazza and my design journey before it was time for me to head back to Season 2 of Queen Sugar. Trying to squeeze in time to take on clients in that short of a timeframe, (mind you) at the very start of birthing and launching a brand as a one-woman team, was virtually impossible and I felt really bad about that. But one of my really good and dear friends shared this with me...
"You are your biggest client right now. If you have to be a little selfish and focus solely on your own design projects which will ultimately grow your blog audience and your brand and you know for sure you can depend on yourself to fund your own projects...then don't feel guilty about not being able to squeeze others in. Why? Because ultimately everyone else is only a potential client until they sign off on their contract and place money in your hand"
That was the best piece of advice given to me at such a crucial time and I so needed to hear it because I quickly learned almost immediately after my launch, that many are interested in design services...but very few are prepared to pay for it. And, what I absolutely did not want to do was put myself in a position (especially not initially) where expanding my portfolio was strictly contingent upon how many clients would actually go to contract. So I headed back to work in late January of this year, secured the bag and financed my own design projects. And, boy oh boy, I'm so ready to share all of these goodies with you.
At current, it is highly unlikely that I will return to coordinate a third season of Queen Sugar, as I have a host of design projects I'm committed to in year 2018. Of course several of my own, a possible design partnership, and yes quite a few potential client projects. But, I must say these are clients that have been diligent and patiently waiting for me to put my film coordinating days behind so I can for sure this time around, actually have the time to manage all of my ever evolving projects, including theirs. Now, I can manage my own design projects and others. But what I can't do is manage and coordinate a film project, my own design projects and multiple client projects. There's just not enough time in the day to make all of that happen, especially while I'm currently a solo team. Notice, I did say current...because at some point, I believe God will bless me with a team. But the way my OCD and meticulous nature is set-up...Lord I just pray that it's a team I can trust and depend on, a team that's equal to and compliments my work ethic style and a team that's most strong in areas that I am weak.
And, to those who may be wondering...I'm definitely NOT leaving the film industry behind.
Trust me, I have plans for bigger things as far as my filmmaking journey is concerned. I've definitely worked far too hard to just kiss it all goodbye and chalk up the deuces. Also, not to mention my parents spent good money and quite a lot of it to send me to Film School. But, I am very happy and at peace to finally be leaving my days of film coordinating behind.
Ok, moving this story right along...you're still with me right? 😩😉😂
I wrapped up Season 2 of Queen Sugar last month and immediately hit the ground running, prepping for all of the new content, which will begin debuting on my blog next month. During my six month blog hiatus, I was at least maintaining a presence on my social media pages...both my Instagram and Face Book pages for Allured By Design. I also begin posting a lot of Instagram stories updating my followers on looks and reveals they could look forward to seeing this Fall Season. And, in addition to that, I begin sharing a lot of design inspiration photos of looks curated by other Interior Designers, Interior Decorators, and Interior Stylists. Yes, there is a difference in all three titles. Google is your friend. 😉 But for your convenience, click here to read a post explaining the difference in titles and the type of design services each position offers. The post is written by a very popular Interior Designer,
Kathy Kuo, who's work and brand I so admire.
Ideally, I'd love for at the very least ninety to ninety-five percent of the photos I share on my social media pages to be most of my own work, which is the case for a lot of Design Bloggers I follow and admire the most on Instagram. However, with me not having a whole lot of new content to debut during my hiatus period, it was very challenging to do so sadly. Nonetheless, thank you from the bottom of my heart to those who rode with me regardless and continued to like and comment on my many recycled photos. Thank you to those who've followed along my Instagram stories. Thank you to the many new followers who chose to climb aboard and follow along this design journey with me. And, thank you to everyone who's been patiently waiting to see what I have in store over the course of the next few months of this year and beyond.
To share a few details on what's in store...my Guest Bedroom reveal makes its debut on my blog in early October. From there, I will next reveal my Master Bedroom, and I have a few updates to my beloved blue living room I hope to share as well. If it's possible to squeeze in my bathroom projects before the end of this year, I will try. But if not...they'll be shared with you hopefully in the first quarter of next year.
I also have a few design videos I'll be producing and shooting before the end of this year. See, putting my filmmaking experience to work even in the design world. 😉 I'm not quite sure if the videos will all debut this year, possibly just one. But definitely stay tuned for each of them, as I believe and hope you all will love them. Also, while I haven't really worked out all of the plans or logistics for a Christmas holiday shoot, I imagine I will probably do one again this year. Or, maybe I'll take that much needed nap instead and skip out on a Christmas shoot, so I can prepare for the workload of 2018. I am oh so serious too! So if you see no new 2017 Christmas content this year, just know it's because I'm napping, lol.
But before I close this bad boy out, I'd like to leave you all with three things...
1. An announcement that you all can now sign up via email and subscribe to my blog. Of course you're more than welcome to still be able to access my blogpost directly from my social media pages. But if you'd prefer to have each post delivered directly to your email inbox for assurance that you're never missing out on the latest blogpost, simply go to my new Home page and sign up by clicking here. And, if you've never seen my Welcome To Allured By Design video before, it's now accessible on my Home page as well.
2. A gallery of photos from Queen Sugar - Seasons 1 & 2 Wrap Parties. For those not familiar with the film industry phrase, wrap party, it's an end of season or end of filming private party all television and film productions throw for the entire Cast & Crew of the project. It's an opportunity for all of the Executives, Producers, Cast and all of the Crew to come together void of work and be social, drink, eat, have fun, de-stress and celebrate bringing the project to a culmination. I hardly ever share photos of that part of my world with my design audience. I mainly share my Queen Sugar world on my personal pages. But I thought, I'd let you all at least see a snippet into that world, since I've only spoken about the show a plethora of times in various posts since the debut of my blog last year.
As happy as I am to be moving onto bigger and better things, words can't express enough how very much I will truly miss working with one of the absolute best and genuine cast in Hollywood.
3. Last but not least, a teaser photo from my Guest Bedroom reveal. Word in these design streets is the colors plum and purple are the forecast for Fall 2017. Of course in my usual design style and aesthetic, you can look forward to seeing lots of bold colors and a variety of different prints and patterns all flowing in a beautiful visual cohesion from this upcoming reveal.
Interior Decorating & Styling By: Allured By Design
Photo Still By: Stacy Marks Photography
Shooting Location: House Piazza
Home Decor: Gray Toss Pillow - Cost Plus World Market, Blush Patterned Pillow - Pier 1 Imports, Plum Toss Pillow - Cost Plus World Market, Neutral & Gold Medallion Toss Pillow - Kirkland's, Zebra Printed Bench - Pier 1 Imports
As always, thank you all so much for your love and continued support. Feel free to reach out to me with any design questions, inquiries or concerns by clicking here. And, be sure to follow us on FB and Instagram. And, as the title of this blogpost says - cue Beyonce's "Run The World" and Let's Get Back To Business!!