Tag Archives: ballard designs

For Your Style I’d Walk a Mile with Karen Mooney

Karen Mooney is the Vice President of Creative at Atlanta-based home decor retailer, Ballard Designs. Her daily challenge is to make sure everything the Ballard customer sees and experiences is beautiful and inspiring — whether it’s the design of a room, the layout of a page or the logo on a box. Happy to have her here today. She’s a smart and stylish lady and I too can appreciate a little leopard in my life. Enjoy!

1. Who would you want to play you in a movie?
Because I’m irrationally vain I’d love to have Gwyneth Paltrow play me in a move. But in all honestly, Phyllis Diller would probably be a more appropriate pick.

2. I wish I could…
Sing! I fantasize about being on a stage in front of a band, dancing like a fool and belting it out for a cheering crowd.

3. My first style memory is…
Growing up, Easter Sunday was a big deal at my house, and I always got a brand new outfit. When I was about 8 years old, my grandmother bought me a Gunne Sax (does that brand even exist anymore?) Easter dress that was a light floral with an elastic neckline that I could stretch to make it an off-the shoulder number. Of course, I wasn’t allowed to wear it like that to church, but alone in my bedroom I was quite glamourous. The outfit was completed with white lace-trimmed bobby socks, white patent leather mary janes, a little white purse, white gloves and a CORSAGE. Hey, I said Easter was a big deal 🙂

4. I could not live without my…
Pandora. It’s on constantly at my house.

5. I could live without…
hashtags #blech

Pick a photo, decor object or piece of clothing that defines your style:

I have a tiny shoe obsession and love to rock a high heel. The leopard is just the icing on the cake.

Thanks, Karen!

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For Your Style I’d Walk a Mile with Susan Bogle

Susan is one of my artist friends and favorite people. Originally from Atlanta, Susan and her husband, David Turner, went to art school at Auburn and then moved on to New York to begin their careers as artists and designers. Now a Senior Art Director at Ballard Designs, she spends her days tweaking and perfecting the “European-inspired” home furnishings brand.

1. Who would you want to play you in a movie?
I was molded by old movies and always preferred the snappy-dialogue characters. Rosalyn Russell in “His Girl Friday.” Those smart broads were always more intriguing than the blond ingénues who would fall down when chased. But really the perfect fit would be Stockard Channing as Rizzo in “Grease.” It’s been pointed out enough times that I have to go with her.

2. I wish I could…
Sing. My God I wish I could sing. I’m a terrible singer, simply awful. Oh to have the angelic voice of Emmylou. Or to be PJ Harvey, all screeches and wails and elbows and lips.

3. My first style memory is…
Otto Zenke’s interior design showrooms. My grandmother worked for Zenke. I would go to the office with her and run amok through those rooms of gorgeous British antiques. My taste has been forever influenced by his timeless style. Start with a classic British base and then layer on the exotic. My husband and I call our
decorating style “we are English noblemen who have traveled abroad.” Granted, poor English noblemen. We invented shabby chic.

4. I could not live with out my….
My car. I drive a 31-year-old Jaguar. It’s gorgeous—and it’s a pain, but well worth the trouble and expense. The fluid lines, wood dash and black-rimmed dials are a designer’s dream. It doesn’t matter that most of the dials don’t work. When it’s in the shop (which is frequent), I completely lose my superpowers! Practical cars have no magic.

5. I could live without…
Overhead lights. They’re just wrong.

Pick a photo or décor objet, or piece of clothing that defines your style …

I fully admit it. I love Ralph Lauren’s world. I cruise the NY Ralph Lauren store any chance I get. However my style is a bit more streamlined because of my love affair with art deco. I can’t resist those powerful lines.

photo of Susan by Emmett Martin

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7 Golden Styling Rules for Bookshelves for Ballard Designs

People are always asking me how to style a bookshelf. Staring at rows of shelves can be daunting. Where do you put the books? By height? By color? I teamed up with Ballard Designs to break it down to 7 golden rules.

From organizing by color to telling a story, I’ll teach you the tips and tricks that I use in my own home as well as on the job. Stick to these tried and true styling secrets and you’ll get beautiful and clutter-free results every time. Happy styling!

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Susan Bogle’s Cocktail of the Week

Portrait on Susan’s Brooklyn Rooftop, circa 1992:David Turner; cocktail image: Susan Bogle

Susan is one of my artist friends and favorite people. Originally from Atlanta, Susan and her husband, David Turner, went to art school at Auburn and then moved on to New York to begin their careers as artists and designers. Now a Senior Art Director at Ballard Designs, she always has hilarious stories of their life when they were just starting out.  As many of you creatives out there know…it can be feast or famine.  Susan gave us a cocktail recipe of hers and David’s that they would turn to after they’d already spent their money elsewhere. Thanks Susan…for sharing another super cool story of what it was like to be an artist in New York hanging out around the Chelsea Hotel scene.

Susan says:

I spent the 1990s in New York City as a straight-out-of-school meagerly paid magazine designer — and yet my friends and I managed to live like kings. When we had the money, we dined on lobster and drank white sangria at El Quijote next to the Chelsea Hotel. When we did not have money, we just drank white sangria at the bar. It was on these barstools that we discovered the secret to the potency of E.Q.’s seemingly harmless signature drink: Liquor, and lots of it.

Our homemade version of E.Q.’s recipe became a staple on hot summer days in our Brooklyn backyard. Having no air-conditioning, David, Fred, Susanne and I would sit under the sprinkler, sipping the afternoon away. Living the good life on the cheap.

Our sangria consisted of a big jug o’ cheap white wine, apples/oranges/lemons/limes, sugar, and then the E.Q.-inspired magic — the  last dregs of most every liquor bottle in our bar. We didn’t know enough to add club soda, but for our purposes it would have just watered down our afternoon’s fun.

Now that we are grown-up working artists, the recipe has been tamed a bit. But feel free to experiment with those forgotten bottles of vodka, rum , bourbon, whatever that could sadly be gathering dust in the back of your cabinet.

To make one pitcher of Starving Artist Sangria:

1 bottle of white wine (Pinot Grigio is nice)
1 oz Cognac (or slightly more to taste)
1 oz Cointreau (or slightly more to taste)
2 tablespoons brown or raw sugar (also to taste)
Juice of half an orange
1 lemon sliced thin
Apples, oranges, or any fruit cut to small chunks
Half an orange sliced thin for garnish
1 cup of cold club soda

Combine the first batch of ingredients and leave in the refrigerator long enough to ‘marinate.’ An hour is plenty of time. Add cold soda, pour, garnish with orange slice (and anything else festive), and enjoy!




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