Monday, November 9, 2009

Weekend Recap: The Martha Rules

Hi loves,

Wouldn’t it be great if this recap was about finishing everything off of my to-do list?

I’m certain that it would be a fab recap, but it so didn’t happen!

-I did end up cleaning the house. I actually got into a huge cleaning fit and rearranged most of the kitchen and put the Roomba to work in the living room! So yay for that!

-Finished and put away the laundry so that was also progress.

-Went out and got the supplies to make the pillows. I just never got around to starting them. Hoping to work on that this week.

- Helped Watched Jon rake up all the leaves in the front and back yards.

No home design projects got done, but I did get to work on a pretty big project that I’ll be revealing soonish! It kept me busy most of the weekend.

When I had some down time I settled in to read The Martha Rules. Since you all showed such interest in the book I figured I would  share one of her rules a day.

Rule #1: Build your business success around something that you love- Something that is inherently and endlessly interesting to you.

This rule is something that I have always believed to be true, but didn’t always use the advice on myself. I fought my love for interior design for a long time. When I was searching for my perfect college my first search lead me to art schools in order to major in interior design, but I kept thinking that it wasn’t a professional career just a hobby and went against my better judgement and majored in business and then communications.

After college I continued to resist my love for design and went into retail buying. I job hopped a lot searching for that perfect fit. I never felt like I was being creative enough in any of the jobs I encountered. I would tackle decorating and event design projects in my free time and started to be known as the Martha Stewart in my circle of family and friends.

Finally I reached a point in my life where I knew I didn’t want a job. A wanted a career, a life, something that would have me exciting to wake up every morning, something that was totally and completely me! With the support of friends and family I eventually took that leap and did my schooling for interior decorating and set up my own business.

It hasn’t been easy. Many days have been spent in tears. I have days were I’m convinced I’m totally horrible and have no talent. Days were I don’t feel a creative bone in my body. I then need to give myself a little pep talk, go out and clear my head and then inspiration will hit me and my brain starts working on overdrive with design ideas and I’m reminded of why I do design for a living. It’s a good thing.

If you were to start your own business what would it be? What is that thing that you totally love?

* Since everything looks better with pictures I used some images of one of Martha’s home to sprinkle throughout the post!

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Blogger Alicia B. Designs said...

My father said that he doesn't care what each of us (3 girls) do just as long as we love it and no matter what, we'll be successful. I started out thinking I wanted to work for a museum but FELL into this design thing and LOVE IT more than museums!

I can't wait to buy The Martha Rules/beg for it for xmas.

November 9, 2009 at 12:12 PM  
Blogger LindsB said...

Ok, this book has been moved up to #1 on my list now- I must start it tonight :)

November 9, 2009 at 12:22 PM  
Blogger Miss Wendy said...

We have such similar stories. Like you I never considered studying design in school thinking it wasn't professional enough. I am learning to listen to my heart a bit more.
I seriously need to pick up Martha Rules and read it.

November 9, 2009 at 12:23 PM  
Blogger Ms. Bright said...

Guess this is now my must-read. Thanks for sharing!! ID was my 2nd major. I had always thought it was just a hobby, too.

November 9, 2009 at 12:32 PM  
Blogger MyLittleHappyPlace said...

Seems like simple enough advice, but I fear not enough people follow it. I, like you, went against my gut instinct as well. I chalk it all up to experience, but one day - after all our globetrotting is done, I hope to have some sort of design-oriented business.

Great way to tie-in the Martha book with your own experience - keep it real!

November 9, 2009 at 12:34 PM  
Blogger Jessica said...

I JUST started my own business this weekend actually! Well sort of :) I opened an etsy shop finally FINALLY doing what I love, which is creating invitations & doing paper goods. So very excited!

November 9, 2009 at 1:17 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

I really enjoyed your post...I'm just starting a small jewelery business and i keep wavering from utter confidence and excitement, to panic and anxiety, to "what made me think i had the talent for this?", back to excitement...roller coaster ride, anyone?

November 9, 2009 at 1:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Whatever people think of Martha, they respect her business sense, and I totally agree that being in love with what you do makes such a difference. I'll have to check out the book! I'd love to consider a career in design someday :-) But, for now I work in a totally different industry...

November 9, 2009 at 1:22 PM  
Blogger Carolyn said...

Same as you. I'm a bit jealous. I too majored in business when I initially thought about graphic or interior design. Now that I am jobless in another country (because I can't speak the language yet) I have found that I spend SO much time on interior design. I admire you. I'm sure it's not easy. ds

November 9, 2009 at 1:38 PM  
Blogger Scientific Housewife said...

Truly inspiring and such beautiful pictures! Thanks :)

November 9, 2009 at 1:40 PM  
Blogger my favorite and my best said...

great post! and so true. and now all i want is a big table in a sunny spot for cactuses.

November 9, 2009 at 1:43 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

This is such great advice in a very inspiring post! Love the images you selected....especially that canopy bed!

November 9, 2009 at 1:55 PM  
Blogger Flavia @ Estilo Home said...

Thank you for providing us a rule a day! My story is very similar to yours. I've been drawing floor plans since I was 8 years old, but thought that was the job of an architect and I didn't want to pursue that. I spent the past 10 years thinking I wasn't creative enough and only now I'm coming around to believing in myself and pursuing interior design!

November 9, 2009 at 2:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Being your own business owner, do you value the business degree that you got in college? I think you're a wonderful example of having a well-rounded education and work history that reinforces the quality of your creative work.

My degree was in English, and I'm just now coming around to actually using my degree, which was my passion but got nudged aside for "practical work". Yucky words. Thanks for sharing your journey!

November 9, 2009 at 2:50 PM  
Blogger Melissa said...

I am going to have to read this book! I love that you took the jump and are doing what you love. If I could do anything I would give up the practice of law and be a wedding planner. Maybe someday.

November 9, 2009 at 2:54 PM  
Blogger Averill said...

Martha's advice is simple, but very true. I'm an attorney by training and now work at a major energy company. I enjoy the energy industry, find it interesting, etc. but am NOT generally in love with what I do on a day-to-day basis. Maybe someday, but not today.

So I'm giving it some time, but have found myself spending more and more time blogging, designing (both real and imaginary rooms) and trying to figure out a way to make some money off both of those. :)

November 9, 2009 at 3:06 PM  
Blogger Karen@StrictlySimpleStyle said...

Find something you love and get paid for it-a great goal for all of us to have.

I'm glad you found you way to the design field.

November 9, 2009 at 3:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I feel like I TOTALLY am 2 steps behind you... I have always loved homes and design, but took the practical route and majored in business in college. Now I do project management and am bored to tears, using my blog as an escape, taking a few classes, and hopefully doing what you're doing now!

Now I want to buy this book!

Keep up the amazing work! You've already done the hardest part - making the decision to go for it! :)

November 9, 2009 at 3:48 PM  
Blogger Southern Aspirations said...

Fabulous post and I'm a little bit envious. What I'd do-- wedding or event planning business. Always thought that I wanted to do interior design- but I too wrote it off as a hobby. Only I didn't stop at majoring in Business in undergrad, I went and got an MBA concentrating on Finance. ???

Anywho...I'm not sure how much talent I have compared with every one else's great work that I see! But, it is reassuring to hear that even great designers struggle with similar feelings.

Thank you for the post and great rec. And sorry this comment is so long! Eek!

November 9, 2009 at 6:39 PM  
Blogger Emily Arrison said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

November 9, 2009 at 6:41 PM  
Blogger Emily Arrison said...

Thank you so much for sharing this book and I look forward to reading your Martha tips. I think I'll add this book to my Christmas gift list! This year I have been starting my own business making paper embellishments and cutouts for weddings and parties. I also design invitations and such. My business is Timeless Paper. It is so nice to connect to another creative person who has been through similar events that I'm working on. Love your blog! Please stop by my blog anytime:


November 9, 2009 at 7:05 PM  
Blogger FrenchGardenHouse said...

Great Post!

November 9, 2009 at 7:32 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

What a wonderful post (and thanks for helping me find a "Must Have" item for my Christmas list!)

If I could do anything... anything? I would open my own home decor boutique.

Now if I could only get my dreams and my husbands to fall into place together... lol

November 9, 2009 at 8:09 PM  
Blogger pve design said...

Do what you love and the rest will follow!
Rules were meant to be broken, right....I think I might need to read this book.

November 9, 2009 at 8:17 PM  
Blogger Christen said...

I hope one day I am able to take that leap and do what I love even though I have denied myself that gift up until now. I feel stuck and don't know how to just take that leap of faith. I really admire you and your strength. Such a great example for all of us!

November 9, 2009 at 9:26 PM  
Blogger court. said...

What a great topic and thank you for such a candid post. I have had decor in my bones, like many of you, since I was young. I had to submit floor plans before moving furniture as a child because my parents found me trapped under a desk at age 8. I followed a conventional path through college and once the plans to be a doctor didn't pan out, I've been in sales ever since.

We moved to FL two years ago and I almost took the plunge. I looked into the local art school and came thiiiiissss close to enrolling in an interior design program. I chickened out, the debt was too much for us to handle at the time.

The only solace I have is that I know that EVENTUALLY I will come around to my calling in design. Before I was restless and in despair that it would never come, but am comfortable now to let things unfold as they may. There's a time and a place for everything.

Great to hear your story!

November 9, 2009 at 9:43 PM  
Blogger Sarah's Fab Day said...

Looks like a great read, I may just have to pick it up. I feel like I'm at a crossroads myself. I'm not feeling super marketable so this might be just the thing to get the ball rolling in the right direction.

Hope you're feeling better my dear!

November 9, 2009 at 9:59 PM  
Blogger Moni @ CL Journal said...

I read this book when it first came out. After reading your post, I have decided to take it off the shelves and re-read it again!

I always wanted to have a catering company. Maybe now is the time to look into this.

November 9, 2009 at 10:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love what I do and it happens to be interior design too. I just went out on my own and it's the hardest thing I've ever done but it's also the most rewarding. It wears me OUT :) but I can't imagine doing anything else.
Thanks for sharing your story. Glad you followed your heart!

November 10, 2009 at 12:36 AM  
Blogger The Brick Cottage said...

I just wanted to chime in and congratulate you on your courage in following your dreams. I have a similiar back story to yours. I love interior design but in college I decided to major in Merchandising and Design because I thought it was more practical. I then worked as a sales manager in a department store and later as a retail buyer. Now I find myself unemployeed and want to have a career, a business of my own, and not just working for a paycheck. What that business will be, I have no idea, but I am looking forward to the journey. Your blog is really encouraging and I look forward to following your successes.

November 10, 2009 at 12:03 PM  
Blogger Red Lipstick Style said...

I hadn't heard of Martha Rules, amazing because I'm am a huge fan!I have even written papers on her for my fraud degree about how she was unjustly attacked in the fraud case and reasons as to why this was the case (and I'm completely conservative!) I definately want this book! Thanks for introducing it and sharing the tips. I like to read your view points, you are very business savy. As I'm looking to expand a business, I love hearing what other women have to say.


November 10, 2009 at 5:09 PM  
Blogger Mslay said...

I have wanted to be an Interior Designer since I was 10 years now! I have completed almost all course work for my colleges IDES program and want a BA in Fine Arts of INterior Design! As for what I want to do for a career that would make me happy? I love entertaining people and being in a space that makes my anxiety level go down. I think thats why I love design because it is an instant appeal to me and I understand how it can realy effect your mind and soul.

November 11, 2009 at 6:38 PM  

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