Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Glam Lamb: Irene Lovetts Room Redo

You can view Irene Lovett's redecorated room here on the Glam Lamb post. And thank you Hallie from Glam Lamb for your donations to our charity project. Enjoy!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

HGTV & Good Shepherd Center Videos


Thank you HGTV and Editor at Large for producing these great videos from the Good Shepherd Center Charity Design Project for HGTV.

Click here to view some of the fabulous featured designers from HGTV:
Erica Islas
Jordan Cappella
Kristine Paige Kamenstein
Vanessa De Vargas
Shirry Dolgin
FORM

Enjoy!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Thank you Natalie at Houzz




Have you seen the fabulous post by Natalie on Houzz.com that features some of the rooms from our Good Shepherd Project? Take a look at these once drab rooms and see how these AMAZING designers took to re-decorating these rooms. Such an amazing transformation!


You can view the story and images here. Enjoy!

Thank you Glendale News Press



Vanessa Kogevinas and I were acknowledged for our project with Good Shepherd Center for Homeless Women and Children and were given an award at the Forget Me Not event at the Wilshire Country Club a couple weeks ago. Glendale News Press was there to cover the event and above we are pictured with Isabelle Zimmerman the Co-Chair from Good Shepherd. It was quite the honor to be be given such an award and want to thank everyone at Good Shepherd for the wonderful afternoon!

Click here to read the story.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Jessica Bennet Interiors: Blog Post Before and After



Thank you Jessica for posting this adorable video from your before and after experience from Good Shepherd. Your room is just beautiful! You can view the post and video here.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Laura Clayton Baker: Good Shepherd Blog Post


Take a peek at Laura Clayton Baker's blog post about her experience putting together her room at Good Shepherd at lots of posted pics of her room. Thanks again Laura for your time, design and efforts on the Good Shepherd Project. You can read it here.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Thank you Lamp Plus!


Thank you Lamps Plus for your generous donation and small video on the Good Shepherd Project. Please click here to read the press release and view the video of Susie Ho's room.

Taken from the press release:
LampsPlus.com, the leading online retailer of decorative lighting and home décor accessories, announced its involvement with the Good Shepherd Charity Design Project in Los Angeles. The project benefits the Good Shepherd Center for homeless Women and Children, renovating rooms used as temporary shelter by victims of domestic abuse and homelessness.

Lamps Plus donated table lamps, lighting fixtures and home furnishings to the shelter. The project renovated 30 single occupancy rooms at the shelter’s downtown location, and was managed by interior designer Vanessa De Vargas, and consultant/writer/editor Vanessa Kogevinas of the Los Angeles-based Designers Networking Group (DNG).

Each room was assigned to a local area designer, who was given one month to complete their room redesign. 10 of the rooms were completed in May, another 10 in June and the final 10 unveiled in July. Angela Hsu, Lamps Plus Vice President of Internet Marketing, noted that, “As a company located in Los Angeles, Lamps Plus is very pleased to have been a part of this charitable project, which benefits so many women and children in our community on an ongoing basis.”

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Thank you Ask Miss A!


Thank you to Erika Thomas for including our Good Shepherd Project on the Ask Miss A blog. We very much appreciate the support! You can view the blog post here.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Good Shepherd Charity Design Project Invite - TODAY is the last day!


You are invited to...

GOOD SHEPHERD CENTER FOR HOMELESS WOMEN & CHILDREN CHARITY DESIGN PROJECT IN LOS ANGELES


Presented by Vanessa Squared Productions Vanessa De Vargas / Turquoise & Vanessa Kogevinas / Get It! Consulting


Please come and join us for our Show House in downtown LA as 30 interiors designers transform the Good Shepherd Center for Homeless Women & Children into a beautiful space to benefit deserving area women and children. All 30 rooms will be open for viewing and each designer will be there to present their room. This is an event you don’t want to miss! Invite is attached.


Saturday and Sunday July 23 and 24th from 11-3pm


GOOD SHEPHERD CENTER FOR HOMELESS WOMEN & CHILDREN
Hawkes Building

11650 Rockwood St.

Los Angeles CA 90026

PH 213 482 1834



Food and refreshments will be served.


Parking available on all side streets.


*No RSVP is necessary we look forward to seeing you!


*Please feel free to pass the invite along.


ABOUT GOOD SHEPHERD CENTER FOR HOMELESS WOMEN & CHILDREN
The mission of Good Shepherd Center for Homeless Women & Children is to provide, with dignity and love, a continuum of care from homelessness to self-sufficiency for women and their children, through services offered by professional and volunteer staff. For over 25 years Good Shepherd Center has provided food, clothing, shelter and supportive services for homeless women and children. From mobile outreach to transitional shelter to long-term housing for mothers with disabilities, help is available every step of the way. Good Shepherd continues to serve more than 900 women and children a year through comprehensive programs, providing long-term solutions to poverty and homelessness. www.gschomeless.org

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Good Shepherd Center Interview: Vanessa Kogevinas



Good Shepherd Center Interview: Vanessa Kogevinas

Vanessa Kogevinas’s career in publishing and management has spanned over fifteen years, including positions at Architectural Digest and as a Founding and the Managing Editor editor of Western Interiors and Design magazine. She has also held positions as Project Manager of Veranda's show house at Greystone and as a Project Manager at Kathryn M. Ireland design.

Vanessa currently serves as a Contributing Editor for California Homes magazine, a Contributing Editor for the Editor At Large website, and writes for a number of publications and blogs. She also runs her own consulting firm, Get It! Consulting, which specializes in assisting interior design professionals in reaching their professional goals through marketing, public relations and counseling.

In 2009, she founded Vanessa Squared Productions with her business partner interior designer Vanessa De Vargas, which organizes events throughout the Los Angeles area.

Vanessa Kogevinas’s love for her community and her desire to give back is evident in all the hard work she has done for this project. I was very excited when she took some time away from her coordinating efforts to share with us her wishes for this project and how she feels about being a part of it.

VK: I am delighted and honored to be spearheading this project with my business partner, Vanessa De Vargas. The fact that our efforts will allow women (and their children in some cases) that are committed to overcoming their hardships live in comfortable, beautiful spaces is what drives me. This is all about supporting their efforts to become successful, productive women in society.

Hopefully, the newly decorated spaces that they live in will inspire them to go above and beyond what they thought they could accomplish. I also hope that it will remind them that they are loved and cared for by individuals and their community. That the hardships they have suffered do not define them--that they are supported and that they are believed in. Beyond that, the fellowship that we, the participants and donors, will feel is invaluable.





The Good Shepherd Center's Mission best defines how I feel: The mission of Good Shepherd Center for Homeless Women & Children is to empower women and their children to move from homelessness to self-sufficiency, through housing, employment and support services--offered with dignity and love. I am humbled by the generosity of all the people that I have called upon. Thank you to all the designers and donors for supporting us.


TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?
VK: Vanessa De Vargas and I were looking for a charity that we could help using our connections in the interior design and entertainment industry.
I called upon an old friend Tiffany Quick who works with Good Shepherd and 'the rest is history!'


TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
VK: The biggest challenge of the project will be getting the word out as far as we'd like the news to extend. We need everyone's help--word of mouth, reaching out to contacts, business associates, family, friends, talking about it... talking about it .... and talking about it some more. Somewhat like a You Tube video that goes viral... I'm going for 'viral' on this one!

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
VK: Yes, I chose my two inspiration pictures because they capture women that have benefited from the Good Shepherd Center.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
VK: The collaboration of all involved... and the knowledge that determined women will be living in the gorgeous spaces.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Thank you Apparel News!



Thank you to Rhea for posting our invite on the Apparel News Blog! Much appreciated Rhea and we look forward to seeing you at the opening. Vanessa De Vargas

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Good Shepherd Charity Design Project Invite


You are invited to...

GOOD SHEPHERD CENTER FOR HOMELESS WOMEN & CHILDREN CHARITY DESIGN PROJECT IN LOS ANGELES


Presented by Vanessa Squared Productions Vanessa De Vargas / Turquoise & Vanessa Kogevinas / Get It! Consulting


Please come and join us for our Show House in downtown LA as 30 interiors designers transform the Good Shepherd Center for Homeless Women & Children into a beautiful space to benefit deserving area women and children. All 30 rooms will be open for viewing and each designer will be there to present their room. This is an event you don’t want to miss! Invite is attached.


Saturday and Sunday July 23 and 24th from 11-3pm


GOOD SHEPHERD CENTER FOR HOMELESS WOMEN & CHILDREN
Hawkes Building

11650 Rockwood St.

Los Angeles CA 90026

PH 213 482 1834



Food and refreshments will be served.


Parking available on all side streets.


*No RSVP is necessary we look forward to seeing you!


*Please feel free to pass the invite along.


ABOUT GOOD SHEPHERD CENTER FOR HOMELESS WOMEN & CHILDREN
The mission of Good Shepherd Center for Homeless Women & Children is to provide, with dignity and love, a continuum of care from homelessness to self-sufficiency for women and their children, through services offered by professional and volunteer staff. For over 25 years Good Shepherd Center has provided food, clothing, shelter and supportive services for homeless women and children. From mobile outreach to transitional shelter to long-term housing for mothers with disabilities, help is available every step of the way. Good Shepherd continues to serve more than 900 women and children a year through comprehensive programs, providing long-term solutions to poverty and homelessness. www.gschomeless.org

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Good Shepherd Center Interview: Michele Alexandra Kay



Good Shepherd Center Interview: Michele Alexandra Kay

Renowned British retail and exhibition designer and owner of M.A.K Design, Michele Alexandra Kay began her career in London. She honed her unique vision and cutting-edge talents working with highly-acclaimed Design Centre in Piccadilly Circus as well as with Ilan Pivko, the prestigious and often controversial Israeli architect. Michele brought M.A.K. Design to Los Angeles where she shares her talents, creativity and flair with high-profile and celebrity clientele and companies. From classic drapery, to modern event decor, storefront window displays to private interior home decor, M.A.K. Design is truly inspired by the energy, vitality and pure creativity that is Michele Alexandra Kay.


The lovely Michele took the time to answer a few questions about being a part of the Good Shepherd Center Design Project.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?
MK: Through DNG

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
MK: I loved the idea to do such a creative project that will make a positive impact a help some less fortunate women and give them a wonderful and hopefully healing place to stay.

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
MK: I think donations will be the hardest.

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
MK: I actually got inspired when I saw one on the Madison and Grow wallpapers which I’m basing my design around.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
MK: Having the vision and seeing it manifest and knowing that whoever will be in that room will love it!

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small? 
MK: Keep it simple and clean.

TP: What are some of the challenges in doing a project like this?
MK: I think getting all the elements and design you want and relying on donations.

TP: What have you learned, not only about design but about yourself from doing a project like this?
MK: Anything and everything is possible!

Good Shepherd Center Interview: Typhanie Peterson



Typhanie Peterson is an interior designer based in Orange County, and the editor of the blog Shoebox Décor. Typhanie’s passion for interior design was born from her love of fashion. After spending several years in the fashion industry her focus shifted toward interiors and became fascinated with creating spaces that are uniquely suited for her clients no matter the budget or size of their home. This desire led her to switch fields, and she has been working with interiors ever since. Typhanie creates interiors that are playfully polished and colorfully chic while balancing the old and the new. By using High-end and inexpensive pieces together, along with some great vintage finds she creates interiors that function with ease. Typhanie Peterson currently resides in sunny California with her ridiculously cool husband Lucas and their two cats Mr. Bigglesworth and Audrey Hepburn.

How did you hear about the GS Design Project?

Vanessa De Vargas posted a tweet asking for designers to participate and I jumped on board since I had such a wonderful time on the Upward Bound House Shelter Project.

Why did you choose to design a room?
I think it’s important to give back and help those who are going through a rough patch in life. If I can use my talents as an interior designer to create a space that will relax and inspire someone until they get back on their feet, then it’s the least I can do.


What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
Donations! Trying to get items that will fit with the scheme that you have created in your head, then modifying the plan to work with the donations you have received.




What are you most looking forward to with the project?

Working with all the wonderful designers! While interviewing everyone I came to realize that there is an amazing group of designers on board with this project and I can’t wait to see all of their visions come to life.

All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small?
I follow the motto “A place for everything so everything can return to its place”.


Have you ever participated in a project like this before?

Yes, I worked on the Upward Bound House project last year with Vanessa de Vargas.

What are some of the challenges in doing a project like this?
The Upward Bound House project was a challenge because of the short time period the rooms had to be completed in. Getting donations was also another big challenge.

What have you learned, not only about design but about yourself from doing a project like this?
No contractor can take the place of a loving husband and sister who are willing to do the dirty work for free.

Good Shepherd Center Interview: Nadia Geller



Good Shepherd Center Interview: Nadia Geller

As the principal of her eponymous design firm, Nadia Geller has crafted the design experiences of sales galleries, show houses, community areas and model homes across the country. In addition to her work with successful builders and developers, Geller has designed offices, private residences, mobile tours and luxury events for discerning clientele. Her work as a stager with Sotheby’s International Realty and Coldwell Banker has given her a reputation of knowing what sells; as all of the properties she has staged have sold within 5 weeks.

Born in Chicago, Geller honed her design savvy in NYC. With her first position out of school at ABC Carpet and Home in Manhattan, she rose to Visual Manager in less than 6 weeks. Helming the mecca’s signature furniture merchandising and leading a team of 15 creative all stars; Geller’s work can be seen in numerous movies, television shows and celebrity homes. As her reputation for creating trendsetting and fashion forward vignettes grew, so did her clientele. In 2003, she formed Nadia Geller Designs. NGD is a multi dimensional firm specializing in creating spaces for the building community. Her first venture into show house design was soon to become her focus and passion. The award winning firm is the home to talented designers, project managers and skilled craftsmen. We are a proud member of the National Association of Home Builders.

Having worked on over 100 episodes of television, Geller is also a nationally recognized and respected host and designer on Emmy nominated programs such as "Trading Spaces" and "While You Were Out” for TLC. She resides in the Hollywood Hills with her family.

After working with Nadia on a previous shelter project, I was thrilled to get a chance to chat with her about the upcoming GSCDP.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Center Design Project?
NG: Vanessa DeVargas helms the Designers Networking Group along with the GS Design Project. I am a member of DNG and heard about it at a meeting.  There is nothing more rewarding for me than to create spaces that are needed. 

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
NG: I designed a room last year for Upward Bound House and enjoyed the process and results of giving back in the best way I know how.  I jumped on the chance again.

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
NG: The biggest challenge is pulling a room together based on donations.  Because there is a variety of items that you can get from generous donors the biggest challenge is creating a cohesive space that has a clear concept, is functional for the inhabitants and is attractive. 

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
NG: I don't have an inspirational photo yet. My goal is to use as many donated items as I can and find inspiration from a key piece.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
NG: I love a finished space and I look forward to that moment of seeing all the pieces come together.  Also, because this is pro bono and many women will be living in the space, it is great moment when the shelter gives you updates about how much the spaces were loved.  I am a true believer that an uplifting and well done interior can change lives. 

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small? 
NG: The best advice I can give is to use all the space you can. Furniture pieces should be multi-functional and it is important to utilize space underneath furniture and wall space above.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Thank you Beverly Hills Courier


Thank you Brenton from the Beverly Hills Courier for featuring our Good Shepherd Charity Design Project in your latest edition. To view the full article click here, and add in your email address to view the online edition. We are very proud of this project and cant wait to share the amazing rooms and talent from each room! Enjoy! (Vanessa Kogevinas & Vanessa De Vargas)

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Good Shepherd Center Interview: Jenifer Porter


Chic Living LA is a full service interior design firm based moments from the beach in Santa Monica, CA. Headed by designer Jenifer Porter, Chic Living LA is all about bringing a certain "chic-ness" into her clients' lives. Specializing in designer fabrics and furniture and an impeccable taste for art and fashion, her goal is to make her clients happy and comfortable in a house they can call a home. If it's pounding the pavement to find the perfect art piece or designing her own special furniture for a client, she makes sure that her clients are 100% satisfied with their areas!

Jenifer has over 20 years of interior design experience. Between her husbands Design/Build company (Porter Development Corporation) and her own Chic Living LA, together they have everything to design, build, and perfect interiors to make the perfect home.

How did you hear about the GS Design Project? 
I stumbled up on the project while looking for charitable design projects online! My endless Google searching really payed off on this one.
 
Why did you choose to design a room? 

I have wanted to donate my services for some time now, and this project just spoke to me. It is just as incredible for me as it will be for the women and children getting a fresh start from Good Shepard. I'm so excited that we get so much creative freedom. I wanted something that not only myself but also my family could be involved in, so this really was a great match!

What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be? (i.e., Time, Donations, Room Size, etc) 
The biggest challenge for me will definitely be the room size. I'm used to decorating really large, open spaces, but I'm looking forward to the challenge of doing something different. It's going to be a great experience for me!

Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?  
I don't necessarily have a photo. I really go off feeling. My inspiration comes from the the soothing colors of the sea and the warm feeling that makes a house a home.

What are you most looking forward to with the project? 

The thing I'm looking forward to the most is the feeling all of the designers will get when we see the entire project complete. I can't wait to see the excitement on everyones faces as we get together and share the experience of giving.

All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small?  
As I've been thinking about designing a small space, I think my tip would have to be stay simple. Too much clutter and patterns will give someone a panic attack in a space so small! Storage has also been huge for me. Really take advantage of vertical spaces (without being too busy!), and think of other creative ways that the women and children will be able to store their belongings. 

Monday, June 27, 2011

Save the Date! Party for Good Shepherd July 23th & 24th

Save the date! Our Good Shepherd Charity Design Project Party/Open House - July 23/24 (Sat/Sun) in Downtown LA! All 30 rooms will be available to preview including our large Living Room area. Come meet all the talented designers who have put their love and energy into each of these rooms. We are so proud of all the designers and cannot thank all the vendors enough that have donated to our Charity Design Project.

If you would like to receive an invite please contact Vanessa De Vargas turquoise.la@gmail.com

Monday, June 6, 2011

Good Shepherd Center Interview: Vanessa De Vargas



Good Shepherd Center Interview: Vanessa De Vargas

This is the second shelter project I have worked on with Vanessa and her dedication to giving back to the community can be seen in each one. I was very interested in finding out how she got involved with the Good Shepherd Center and what she is most looking forward to while coordinating her latest charitable endeavor.  

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?  
VDV: Last year I project managed and participated as a designer on my first homeless shelter for Upward Bound House in Culver City. This year I wanted to give back again so I looked to Vanessa Kogevinas my business partner and dear friend to see if she could help me organize another project. Turns out she had a fantastic contact at Good Shepherd and the timing could have not have been more perfect to make this all work.

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
VDV: Because of my experience of giving back and providing beautiful spaces for the last project, I realized that what I decorated was a vision I created for a family was based solely on my donations. For this project the room is for single woman. So I am exploring (again based on my donations) the type of resident that would live there. It could be someone 25 or 70? I also want to play with colors that I normally don't use and patterns that might seem unexpected together. So lets just say, there is going to be a lot going on.

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
VDV: Time, nope. Donations, nope. Room size, nope. Its making the person staying in my room happy. That is why I am a designer I am hired to create happy and inviting spaces for clients. It’s my unknown client, who I HOPE will like it. And most importantly be happy.

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
VDV: I have a fabric sample. And this it for now. Not sure how it’s going to be used. But I will find a fun way to use it. I am not a fan of orange. NOT AT ALL. But guess what I’m making an “orange” come back. Watch out.

TP: Why did you choose it?
VDV: I honestly chose it to challenge myself. I want to do use colors and patterns that are not familiar to me. I want to experiment. This is a project where I can take advantage of that.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
VDV: Working with everyone and laughing and having fun all the way through the process. I am so incredibly lucky to have all these talented designers as my friends too. Everyone is so willing to share, help and chip in. We are all there to work together and make this project one that we never forget. We will create memories and be rewarded in our own way of giving back.

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small?
VDV: My advice is: I always tell people go with your gut, don't change your mind about things because you might be setting yourself up for possibly making bad choices. Small spaces can be creative too, so limit areas as you see fit like a dressing area (hang hooks, mirrors, add trays to a dresser), a work area (great lamp, holders for pens and files for organization), the bed area (a water pitcher, good lighting- a DIMMER, books and magazines, large comfy pillows). Make the room cozy and always make it reflect who you are.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Touching Story


Please take a look at this sweet message that Irene Lovett from DesignStiles received from her the new resident that moved into the room she decorated. How incredibly sweet is this? This makes giving back so rewarding. Thank you Irene for creating such a warm and inviting space, we are all so proud! You can read Irene's post here.

From her new resident: My name is Destiny Coleman. I have been a resident at the Good Shepherd Center for Homeless Women & Children since February of this year and recently moved from #305 into my new room, #312. Please allow me to extend my utmost gratitude for giving not only of your time, talent, and money, but of your hearts. It takes a lot for someone to put their passion into filling someone else’s life with joy. And with a grateful heart I say thank you. I love the color scheme, the sophisticated Victorian Theme, and the modern Twitter Twist to my room, all done with a touch of class. It fits me! Only one thing….Can I take the designers with me when I move into my own apartment???? No, really :-)

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Good Shepherd Center Interview: Mollie Ranize


Good Shepherd Center Interview: Mollie Ranize

Prior to opening her own design company, dmar interiors, in the heart of L.A., Mollie had the opportunity to hone her creative skills with some of California’s top design firms on highly publicized projects such as the Roosevelt Hotel in Hollywood and the Thompson Hotel in Beverly Hills.  Her exposure to high-end residential, commercial and hospitality interiors broadened her knowledge base and ignited her drive to create uniquely tailored spaces for each of her clients.  Mollie graduated with highest honors from the Interior Design program at the University of Florida, College of Design Construction and Planning. She is an NCIDQ certified designer and has earned Professional Accreditation from LEED.

Mollie makes sure to stay connected with the design community through her professional memberships with ASID, NKBA and USBGC.  She is also a regular contributor to many environmental, animal and human welfare organizations.

Her interior design studio ranges from large scale residential renovations, exclusive photography and production studios, restaurants and lounges to highly publicized health and fitness centers. dmar interiors is a well versed design company with impeccable attention to detail, respect for budget and belief that customer service is what makes the most positive outcome on a project.

With Mollie’s vast and amazing background in design we can’t wait to see what she creates for the Good Shepherd Center Project. In the mean time here is what she has to say about being part of GSCDP.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?
MR: DNG (Designers Networking Group)

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
MR: After a few grueling years with a slam packed schedule, crunched budgets and a few demanding clients, I was in desperate need of some creative relief.  I've also volunteered (or made donations whenever my schedule hasn't allowed volunteer time) consistently since I was 12 years old.  My experiences volunteering have single handedly changed the course of my life, so the opportunity to give back in my field of expertise was obvious and welcomed.  I hope to gain as much emotionally as the deserving users that will enjoy my completed space.

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
MR: The biggest challenge on this project will be getting enough donations that fit the aesthetics I'm striving for. Like any project, I only provide high quality, thoughtfully produced end products. The fact that I have to work with free to nearly free items makes no difference to me.  I'm approaching this the same way I would be if the woman moving into the room were my highest paying client.

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
MR: I don't have any inspiration images for this project, but I've seen a completed space in my head since I agreed to do the job.  I usually only pull specific inspiration sheets to communicate what is in my head to clients since I (unfortunately) can't let them inside.  I know the feeling I want to produce, so every piece and every decision has to reflect that.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
MR: Reveal time! But I'm also really looking forward to the process of pulling it all together. I've been very impressed with the amount of people that have pitched in and I'm looking forward to sharing the impact they have each made.  Hopefully it will inspire them to do even more in the future.

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small?
MR: Think big! Even though it's compact, it can still be completely functional and inspiring.  Some items may have to do double duty, but I would apply the same goals for the emotional outcome to a small space as I would a large one.  There is also something comforting about having everything you need in one contained place... So long as it's organized.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Thank you Liz Gordon from Liz's Hardware


Last week Liz Gordon opened her store Liz's Hardware and Gallery at The Loft of Liz's for a special luncheon and the curator from the"Frostig Collection" talked about the sculptures from various artists to benefit children with Autism.

Liz then had the designers from our Good Shepherd Project pick from bins and discontinued items for our project. It was such a wonderful day and all the designers walked away with some amazing products for their rooms. Thank you Liz, we wish more store owners could learn from your example. We are all truly thankful for your generosity!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Thank you Seeshopeatdo


Thank you Whitney at Seeshopeatdo for the post today on the Good Shepherd Charity Design Project press that Vanessa Kogevinas and I received from TradHome Magazine. Super appreciate it! Vanessa De Vargas

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Good Shepherd Center Interview: Susie Ho



Good Shepherd Center Interview: Susie Ho

Susie Ho is an interior designer and owner of Mend, a boutique design studio located in Long Beach. A local to Los Angeles, Susie has always had a passion for design and has worked professionally as an interior designer for over six years. Her boutique design studio offers a wide range of interior design services along with re-loved furniture & accessories. She believes that your environment should make you happy, reflect your personal style and inspire you. Susie and her design studio are here to provide creative solutions while enhancing your life through design. Mend... heart, soul and home.

We cannot wait to see Susie’s design philosophy come to life in her GSDCP room. Her eagerness to enhance the lives of the Good Shepherd residents can be seen in her interview below.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?
SH: I was catching up on my blog reading one day and happened to catch Vanessa De Vargas' post about the women's shelter and the call for designers. I was really excited to hear that Vanessa and Vanessa Kogevinas were organizing a shelter project together.

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
SH: I had attended the open house for Upward Bound House last year and was really impressed with the work from the participating designers as well as all the support for the cause. Getting to do what you love is pretty gratifying, but getting to do it while also helping others is even greater.

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
SH: I think the biggest challenge will probably be donations. I think individuals and companies are still experiencing financial hardships, but I have faith that everyone will be able to achieve great design with the donations that we've received so far. I think this is a very creative group involved in this project and I know we're all reaching out to as many people as we can to make this project successful.



TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
SH: I do! I love all things vintage and this is my inspirational photo because it draws from the past, it's architectural, graphic, feminine and there is a touch of glamour. Everything I love! Through my design I enjoy giving nod to the past, but updating it for the present and future.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
SH: I'm really looking forward to working with the shelter and sharing in the design process with the other designers. (Did anyone measure the elevator?!?) I'm also excited to see how the women will react to the newly designed rooms. I know everyone wants to achieve the best possible design for the women living at the shelter.

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small? 
SH: I think there are the "standard rules for decorating small spaces", but I don't always like to follow rules and frankly some rules are meant to be broken. I'm not afraid of color and I'm definitely not afraid of pattern, so I say use those two with abandon if that is what you want. When working with smaller spaces, I think it's really important to designate areas of the room for different tasks so get creative with the furniture layout. I believe creating small pockets for different activities in a small space will make the space seem larger than it really is.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Thank you California Home + Design Magazine


Thank you so much California Home and Design for featuring our Good Shepherd Project on the blog. We really appreciate the shout out! (Vanessa De Vargas and Vanessa Kogevinas)

Monday, May 16, 2011

Good Shepherd Center Interview: Michelle Workman


Good Shepherd Center Interview: Michelle Workman

As one of Hollywood's most sought-after interior designers, Michelle Workman possesses a client roster that includes such esteemed and influential individuals as Jennifer Lopez, John Travolta & Kelly Preston, Kirstie Alley and Leah Remini.

Born in Los Angeles, California, Michelle's penchant for the craft was almost immediately apparent. Some of her fondest childhood memories were of her mother chauffeuring her about the neighborhoods to take in the endless array of visually arresting homes. As a budding young designer, Michelle frequently took pleasure in envisioning and fashioning her very own custom designed forts.

Michelle's engaging personality, calming demeanor and exquisite attention-to-detail continually instill confidence in her clients as she brings into being for them their one-of-a-kind dream home. These qualities, along with Michelle's professional discretion, have made her one of the top interior-designing choices for celebrities and other high-profile individuals alike.

We were very happy when we got a chance to ask Michelle a few questions about why she chose to join the project and what she is most looking forward to.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?
MW: From Vanessa De Vargas

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
MW: I love the idea of helping women and families.  It gives them a safe, comfortable and happy place to live until they get back on their feet, and ultimately my hope is to inspire them to reach for their goals.

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
MW: Probably time and donations.  My company is super busy and we are a small firm, so finding the time to work on the design has been difficult.  But the fact that it is a small space helps with that.  I do still need to find several items to be donated so wish me luck!



TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
MW: No but I have an inspirational fabric... I chose this fabric because it is happy!

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
MW: Seeing the faces of the women when they see the rooms. I'm expecting to cry.

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small? 
MK: Use a riot of analogous colors to achieve visual stimulation rather than many pieces of furniture.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Thank you Get Milkshake


Thank you Get Milkshake for posting our charity project on your site. If you would like to help out our Charity purchase from Pip and Estella please use code "milkshake" so that 100% of all store profits go towards Good Shepherd through 5/13/11. Click here for products from Pip And Estella. Thank you again and happy shopping everyone! Vanessa De Vargas

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Good Shepherd Center Interview: Irene Lovett


Good Shepherd Center Interview: Irene Lovett

Irene Lovett started designstILes as a hobby while working at Kahi Lee Lifestyle. Initially a forum showcasing the designs of her new home, the site began to grow in both scope and followers. DesignstILes soon became an independent business, focusing on clientele with limited budget but unlimited imagination. Inspired by vintage design and harmonic pops of color, Irene leaves an indelible stamp on each project, and a personal feel within every home. Additionally, Irene's talents and passion for cuisine have inspired her to create a vast array of tablescapes, ranging from picnic chic to Christmas swank. 

Irene is thrilled to be a part of the GSCDP, which is easy to see based on her responses during our interview.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?
IL: I follow Vanessa De Vargas on twitter and when she tweeted about it, I knew it was something I wanted to be a part of.

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
IL: I started assisting Vanessa in her design business, hoping to help her out with her room and then one day she asked if I'd be interested in doing a room myself. Um, yeah! I was actually really nervous about getting on board because I wasn't sure if I'd be able to handle this type of project. I realized I need to let go of that fear and go for it. And now, I'm pumped. Game on.

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
IL: Definitely the donations. I'm a newbie in the design business and don't have as many contacts as say, some of the other designers may have, so I'm hitting up my friends. So far, it's been less of a challenge than I anticipated. Fingers crossed that I continue to receive more donations. Hint, hint.

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
IL: No, not yet. I have a mental picture, though.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
IL: Creating an inspiring space for women who aren't necessarily familiar with Interior Design. I'd like for these women to say, "Oh wow, this is nice. I want this to be my room."

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small? 
IL: Don't feel restrained by the size and have fun with it. Sometimes a small space allows you to be more creative.

TP: What do you think are some of the challenges of doing a project like this?
IL: Because this is my first time doing something like this, finding someone to help me paint and hang things up will be a challenge. Plus getting all my furniture down to the location will be a multiple trip process. I hope several of these items will fit in my car.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Marcia Zia/Paul Priven: Good Shepherd Interview


Good Shepherd Center Interview: Marcia Zia / Paul Priven

Marcia Zia, formerly an Emmy nominated set decorator and Paul Priven, a former first assistant director, met each other and started their careers in the entertainment industry.  Since 1999, the husband and wife team—through their namesake company Zia•Priven have created extraordinary lighting for the interior design trade. Known for a sleek, modern aesthetic and the use of luxurious materials, their lighting is featured internationally in, among others, the Grand Hotel Stockholm, the Fontainebleau Hotel & Resort, and Four Seasons Santa Barbara. Their client list includes top designers such as Jamie Drake, Benjamin Noriega-Ortiz, Roderick Shade and Mark Zeff and their work has been published internationally over 200 times.

This power couple is always on the go and is always a pleasure to hang out with. We are so happy they are participating as designers for the Good Shepherd Charity Design Project.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?
MZ & PP: We heard about this fantastic project through the Designers Networking Group, headed by Vanessa De Vargas.

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
MZ & PP: There are several reasons we chose to design a room. First and foremost, we look for ways to give back to the community when we can.  Secondly, we realize that designing and manufacturing lighting doesn’t save the world, so we try to do our part.  Also, Marcia, who’s a former Emmy-nominated set decorator, was excited at the thought of taking on an interior design project, and Paul has had an increased desire to try his hand at interiors as well.

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be? (i.e., Time,
Donations, Room Size, etc)
MZ & PP: The room size is quite a challenge as we want to make sure the occupant will have all the necessities to feel relaxed and comfortable and truly enjoy the space.

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
MZ & PP: There’s not a particular photo we’re using for inspiration, but there are colors, fabrics and textures we’re excited to work with.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
MZ & PP: We really look forward to creating a warm, welcoming home for the woman who will be living there for the next couple years.  We want her to feel special every time she walks through the door. 

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small? 
MZ & PP: Choose pieces that are multi-functional, such as seating that doubles as storage.  Another good tip would be to keep your color palette limited.  Fewer colors will keep the room feeling cohesive.

TP: Do you have a partner for this project, if so, who is it?
MZ & PP: We’re working together—Marcia Zia and Paul Priven, husband and wife and the creative team behind Zia-Priven Extraordinary Lighting.

TP: What made you decide to partner up for this project?
MZ & PP: We’ve enjoyed doing the interior design of the homes we’ve lived in as well as for friends and family, but when this project came around we jumped at the chance to work together because not only could we do something we loved we could also give back.

TP: How will you split the design responsibilities of the project?
MZ & PP: Since we work so well together as a team, we’re going to go with the flow.  If one of us conks out, the other will be there to save them.

TP: Do you think it will be harder or easier having a partner for this project? Why?
MZ & PP: It will definitely be easier to work together.  We have each other to bounce ideas off of and if we’re going to paint, Paul gets the trim and Marcia gets the walls…

TP: Have you ever participated in a project like this before?
MZ & PP: We’ve donated lighting to numerous projects similar to the Good Shepard.  Two that come to mind immediately are the Domino Design Project in New York and more recently, the Upward Bound House in Culver City, but we’ve never had a chance to design a room.

TP: What are some of the challenges in doing a project like this?
MZ & PP: The biggest challenge for us would be time management. We run Zia-Priven, we’re completing a new collection and we want to create an ultra-chic, ultra-luxurious home for the soon-to-be resident. 

TP: What have you learned, not only about design but about yourself from doing a project like this?
MZ & PP: We’ve learned how fortunate a lot of us in this world are and how we, as a people in this day and age, tend to take too much for granted.  We also learned that we’re willing to beg, borrow and almost steal to make this room as beautiful as possible!

Monday, April 25, 2011

Laura Clayton Baker: Good Shepherd Interview


Good Shepherd Center Interview: Laura Clayton Baker

Laura Clayton Baker grew up in Boston.She received her BFA from Parsons School of Design in New York. Since moving to Los Angeles, she has spent many years designing an eclectic group of homes and offices, creating spaces which her clients tell her are a pleasure to live in and to work in. What unites all these spaces is a desire for simplicity and clarity, enriched by warm textures such as heavy linens, soft velvets, and rich woods, compelling colors both subtle and highly saturated, and the sculptural interaction of forms that the right furniture and accessories provide. Her many years of close collaboration with clients have taught her to find beauty in an environment well suited to its function, as well as in the happiness it brings to all the senses. Laura and her husband Steven live in a mid-century Craig Ellwood house in Santa Monica Canyon, with their children Jed and Lucie and their dog Domino, not far from Laura’s office in Brentwood.

With Laura’s artistic take on design we can’t wait to see the room she creates for the GSCDP. We also couldn’t wait to ask her about why she became involved in the Good Shepherd Charity Design Project.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?
LB: About a year ago I was researching a philanthropic way to use my design skills. I thought about organizing a show house kind of project that could turn into low income housing, but I never found the perfect way to get it going. About that time Sasha Emerson told me about the project Vanessa De Vargas organized last year for transitional homeless housing with Upward Bound, and we took a tour of the beautiful rooms. I was really sorry not to have been able to participate in that one, and joined DNG right away, letting Vanessa know I’d be up for the next project. I was thrilled to see this one turn up, and am excited to be able to take on a room.

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
LB: I’m a strong believer in the ability for environment to be a catalyst for personal change. Having a chance to create a space that can give a homeless woman a sense that she’s cared for, that she’s important, and that life can be joyful, is an incredible opportunity. I find colors can give enormous pleasure, so that will a focus for me. By my choices I hope to help this woman find a place of calm and order while creating excitement about future possibilities. I hope to help instill a feeling of pride and self respect. I want to do this with materials that are very inexpensive so that she might carry some of the ideas into her next home. 

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
LB: In my work I design a lot of custom built in furniture, which works well in a small space. For budget reasons I can’t turn to that, so I need to find other creative solutions. It’s a compelling challenge!

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
LB: There are inspirational artists, but not one photo… artists like Maira Kalman who use color in a joyful way which I plan to make a part of my approach.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
LB: I love the process…seeing the room come together, and working on it in a very hands on way. Being fully responsible is exciting; as of course normally I work with a client… this time it’s all up to me. I’d love to be there when the first woman to make herself at home there first sees the space.

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small? 
LB: Clean lines are important, to create an ordered space. There should be places to put everything so that the room feels restful. You can create architecture in a small space through the use of paint and pattern. There shouldn’t be too many objects around as it will feel busy, just a few favorite things.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Kelly Edwards: Good Shepherd Interview


Good Shepherd Center Interview: Kelly Edwards


Kelly Edwards is a host, designer, and lifestyle expert. The Style Network and HGTV star offers dwellers with decorating dilemmas distinctive design tips, bargain-decorating projects and total home makeover transformations inspired by personal style and popular trends. Kelly is well known for her knack in repurposing everyday items into extraordinary collectibles, refurbishing unique home accessories, and crafting recipes for creative cleaning solutions. Most recently Kelly has been seen on The Tyra Banks Show, in the pages of national magazines such as Cosmopolitan, Good Housekeeping, Life & Style and Midwest Living, and deemed over the airwaves as the “MacGyver of Design,” thanks to her amazing ability to turn a simple space into an innovative interior with only a $1,000 budget. Not just another designing diva, this former teen beauty queen is also a do-it-yourself darling with passion for all things self-created from fabrics to fashions to foods.

It is a pleasure to have Kelly on board with the GSCDP and we are thrilled to have had the chance to ask her a few questions about being involved with the project.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project? 
KE: Through the DNG Blog.

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
KE: It is the least I could do. I’ve been blessed with many great things and it feels good to give back and help people who really need it. 

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
KE: Right now, its donations, making them all cohesively work together and picking out the perfect rug...hahaha

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
KE: Since Z Gallerie was gracious enough to donate furniture and artwork to this project I am focusing my room design on what we were given.  I have this gigantic print that incorporates browns, pinks, grays and a few other neutrals. I’m hoping to work around this. It'll be my centerpiece.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
KE: Working alongside all the other talented and amazing designers on this project. It’s really when people come together that great things happen.

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small? 
KE: Have fun!  A small space doesn’t have to feel that way. Add splashes of color, mix textures together and make sure you have plenty of storage. Everyone needs storage!  And maybe

Thank you Tilton Fewick!


Thank you Tilton Fenwick for posting our TradHome press on your blog last week! We very much appreciate it! (Vanessa De Vargas)

Friday, April 15, 2011

Jessica Pakzad Bennett: Good Shepherd Interview


Situated in the heart of gorgeous Southern California, Jessica Bennett Interiors is a full service residential interior design firm with one mission in mind: put the client (and their budget) first to create a comfortable yet sophisticated home to suit their needs. Known for a style that reflects her constantly discerning eye, Jessica Pakzad Bennett, is committed to delivering designs that are fresh yet timeless, livable yet tailored, and above-all, completely authentic to the client who has trusted her with their most personal space.
 
Jessica attended USC’s Marshall School of Business, graduating Magna Cum Laude with an emphasis in Entrepreneurial Studies. Throughout college, Jessica worked at family-owned, Ebanista, a nationwide chain of high-end to-the-trade home furnishings showrooms ultimately taking over as their Business and Operations Manager where she resided for four years.
 
Always wanting to one day open her own design firm, Jessica combined her skills in small business and design to establish Jessica Bennett Interiors with the goal of making quality interior design accessible to young professionals and families. Breaking the myth that professional design service is only for their parents’ generation, Jessica excels at maximizing the potential hidden in each of her client’s homes…leaving them with a place they can live, love, work, and play in ultimate pride and comfort.
 
With Jessica’s propensity towards creating tailored interiors, we were excited to ask her a few questions about decorating small spaces and being a part of the GSCDP.
 
TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?
JB: I follow Vanessa De Vargas on Twitter and she Tweeted about it! Got to LOVE social media!

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?
JB: How could I resist? This project is such a wonderful opportunity to combine my business, my passion, and a great cause, all while getting to know other great Southern California designers.

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?
JB: Donations! I can work around the clock, and I can easily work with a small space but I really want to have the funds and materials to make this room gorgeous for the women who are going to call it home.

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?
JB: No photo yet, but I can’t stop thinking pink when planning this room.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?
JB: I can’t wait to see how twenty different designers are going to interpret twenty different rooms. Are there going to be similar looks or are they all going to be strikingly different? I also can’t wait to see the reactions from the Good Shepherd staff when we hand over the finished product!

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small?
JB: I love spaces this small! It forces you to concentrate on the details and create a really intimate, livable space. Tips include sticking with big solid blocks of color instead of tons of different prints and patterns. On a more practical level, think vertically for storage! Whether you place baskets under the bed or shelves above the desk/dresser, remember to use the space above and below your furniture pieces.

 

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

New Press: TRADHome Magazine


A big thank you goes out to Jenny Bradley at Traditional Home Magazine for featuring Vanessa Kogevinas and I in the premier issue of TradHome regarding our Good Shepherd Charity Design Project! Click here to read the article we are featured on page 344. (Vanessa De Vargas) *photo credit Dominique Vorillon.

Hillary Thomas Good Shepherd Interview


Good Shepherd Center Interview: Hillary Thomas

Hillary Thomas believes that good design is not something off-the-shelf or necessarily one particular style. Rather, it’s an eclectic mix of the high and the low where inexpensive flea market finds and fine antiques can coexist effortlessly. Hillary believes in “wabi sabi"; the Japanese design terminology that means "finding beauty in the imperfect" resulting in interiors that are refreshing, surprising and intimate.

Originally from Locust Valley, Long Island, Hillary brings her passion for good design and open spirit to all her projects. Her goal is to bring out the inner-creative in even her most left-brained clients. Rooted in her belief that life is multicultural, multi-layered and inspiring, Hillary harmonizes her clients’ lifestyles, tastes and beloved objects into a well-designed and highly individual living space.


Hillary Thomas Designs was launched when Hillary collaborated with architect Mark Appleton to redesign and decorate a Spanish-style cottage in Santa Monica. Through that experience, a lifelong passion for design, decorating and color was realized. Since then, Hillary has been helping clients identify their true aesthetic and mixing it with her own great style to make something that is unique and all together different than the status-quo.


Hillary is in the process of launching several exciting home lines that reflect her East Coast background and love of different cultures. We were beyond excited that even with her busy schedule; Hillary took the time to answer a few questions about being a part of the Good Shepherd Center Design Project.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?

HT: From Vanessa De Vargas.

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?

HT: I’ve wanted to do a project like this for so long. Vanessa De Vargas had told me about the one she did last year which sounded so amazing. So I jumped on the opportunity to be involved this year.

TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?

HT: Getting my vendors in to help me install and praying that everyone will be happy to lend their time!!

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?

HT: I actually don't! I just have a color scheme in mind. Maybe I need to find an inspiration photo… yikes!

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?

HT: Seeing it all completed and giving one of these ladies a comfortable pleasing room to find some peace in.

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small? 

HT: I am a big fan of color but also know that I need to make this room a bit more serene for the women who will be living in it. So I will try not to overwhelm the space with too much going on.  I'll be using one print throughout and keeping it clean, simple and serene with an element of fun.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Thank you Pip and Estella and Make Under My Life Blog


Thank you Pip&Estella and Make Under My Life Blog for featuring our Charity project on your blog! You can read the full post here.

Erica Islas Good Shepherd Interview



Good Shepherd Center Interview of the Week: ERICA ISLAS

Erica Islas is the founder and principal designer at EMI Interior Design, Inc., a full service interior design &build firm in Los Angeles, started in 2000.

A modernist at heart, Erica’s interiors are timeless and fun. Her incredible use of color and creative space planning is what attracts her clientele & keeps them coming back for more. “Form follows function” is Erica's guiding philosophy. She approaches every project from an architectural perspective, never sacrificing usability and comfort. Her interiors are innovative, inviting and ultimately functional.

Known for her incredible kitchens and bathroom renovations, challenges such as small spaces and children's rooms are welcome and embraced by Erica and her staff, as they creatively transform some of the smallest most unusable spaces to multi-functional rooms. Erica is committed to using sustainable materials, wherever possible.

Erica has been featured on HGTV and is currently featured on HGTV's designer portfolio. Her pro-bono work has appeared in Nesting Newbies & The Los Angeles Times. She has also been featured in Real Simple Magazine, Standard Magazine, amongst other online articles.

We were very excited when Erica took time out of her busy schedule to answer a few questions about why she choose to join the Good Shepherd Center Design Project.

TP: How did you hear about the GS Design Project?

EI: Through being a member of the DNG

TP: Why did you choose to design a room?

EI: My experience last year with UBH was fulfilling and rewarding. I feel blessed that I can give back in such a way. I love our Los Angeles Design community and coming together to work on shelter projects to help those individuals who want to get back on their feet.



TP: What do you think the biggest challenge of the project will be?

EI: I would say the challenge on the project will be the size of the room. But I love to space plan and make even the smallest room be multi-functional and inviting.

TP: Do you have an inspirational photo for this project?

EI: Yes, in my head! My idea is to design a room that is inviting and uplifting. Using natural colors, textures and lot’s of layers. A room that will make the woman staying in it feel safe and feel great about herself. If the tiny room feels like a home and not just a room, then I have done my job.

TP: What are you most looking forward to with the project?

EI: I look forward to creating a warm sophisticated space for someone to feel happy and safe in.

TP: All the rooms at Good Shepherd are dorm size, what advice or tip do you have for someone decorating a space this small?

EI: My advice for anyone decorating a small room is to look for pieces which can be multi-functional. Also keep furniture light and airy. Find a home for everything. Clutter can make small spaces look even smaller, so creative storage is important.



TP: What are some of the challenges in doing a project like this?

EI: Well, the UBH Family Shelter in particular was a challenge in that we were working in the rain, without power/electricity and construction schedule was running behind.So by the time we were allowed into rooms, it was major crunch time! But it was so much fun! All the designers came together, shared their extension cords, man power, donations, it was a wonderful experience and brought us all closer together. I have the up-most respect for everyone involved. We provided bedding, utensils, plates, furniture, art, accessories and much more for four families for an entire Year! That was a lot of work and donations, and I was really proud to have been part of that. It’s hard to think about these projects as a challenge, when you think about whom you are designing these rooms for. The reality is, it’s their lives that are a challenge and it’s humbling to be able to design a room for them, I know that anything we do for them would make their lives much better and bring them hope. It’s great to see there are places like the Good Shepherd and UBH who provide shelter and services for these women and help them get back on their feet. And so it is my honor and pleasure to provide my services as well.



TP: What have you learned, not only about design but about yourself from doing a project like this?

EI: What I found most interesting was how many of my vendors, friends and family all wanted to help. It was really great to have such a huge support system. The room I did at UBH in 2010 would not have been possible without everyone’s help and donations and I was very thankful.