Design Psychology

Do you remember The Sound of Music? Julie Andrews teaching the Von Trapp family children the notes of the musical scale? Building on the progression, leading to “Do-Re-Me“? It has always been a powerful metaphor for me…

And so it begins… Always with Creative Clutter… Today, I began to sink my teeth into the interior architecture of our new project today. What about this? What about that? So many possibilities and options. Have to tailor/filter them to the client’s vision, budget and schedule. Thinking of chronicling the project as Sally and I develop the design, tailoring it to the project’s constraints. This is one small “detail” – the framed opening between the living room and dining room. Still grappling with the Gestalt. That and the dialogue between me and the design will become clear over the next week or so. Stay tuned – perhaps by the end of my journey, the song will be complete.

Regardless, I LOVE doing French Villa Style again!!!! So decorative… So musical… So full of energy… Even the straight lines…


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Do you ever have these moments where things converge – you don’t know why or how – they just do? I had one of those moments this morning.

I got  up early and as is my ritual, I went about the house raising the blinds and opening the drapes, letting in the morning sun. On the dining room table lay a piece of crinkled up tissue paper. What I saw was a beautiful tall woman in a white wrap around dress. She was walking down a dark street, from one pool of street lamp light of the next… I ran, got my camera and captured the moment.

Then a few minutes later I opened my email and waiting for me was an email from my friend Penelope Bianchi. We are always having the most interesting discussions about design and how we see and create. This morning she drew an analogy between the creative process and having a camera in her head!!! And I thought, “WOW!!! That’s exactly what happened!!! I saw the image in my head!  And I knew…”

Here’s the picture I took.

What do you see?

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The other evening after a full day Sally said to me, “Today it felt like several days came at me all at once!” I agreed heartily. I have set several resolutions and goals for myself and the business, all of which need to be worked on and launched in parallel. (More on that another day…) The consequence, is a very fast pace these days… Some might call it relentless.

 In spite of the fact that time is one of the few things you can’t get back, I’ve made the seemingly incongruous decision to take a certain amount of time in the morning, around noon time and in the evening making it sacred, where I will not talk or think about work. I believe in the long run, it will enable me to work more efficiently and effectively.

What prompted this decision was that I found myself looking at very particular kinds of images as I was going through more old design magazines this past weekend. They were all restful and serene.

In one, I might imagine myself reading a book,


while in another; it would be sipping a morning cup of tea or hot chocolate as I backed myself into the day.


Maybe a little inspirational reading before the day begins.


A place to read at the end of the day.


I suppose a nap here and there would be most restorative…


I put this in because I love butterflies. Butterflies make me feel good.

Hope you are all having a wonderful Wednesday!


Note: Other than the second to last image,which is taken from John Saldino’s book Style these are from old design magazines I’ve been purging. I realized after the fact that I didn’t note which picture came from what magazine.