I Entered A Design Challenge And If I Don’t Win Everyone Will Die


Dear Reader,

Do you have a big outdoor space that is just DYING for a makeover? Me neither. Because I am a poor, apartment-dwelling fool and the closest thing I have to an outdoor space is the window ledge I sometimes stand upon because I am so upset about not having an outdoor space. Thus, you can imagine my confused outrage when I was approached by Del Mar to enter into their outdoor space design challenge. Now I know what you’re thinking. You’re all “GAG ME WITH A SPEWN THIS IS A TOTALLY LAME SPONSORED POST” but it’s totally not. I am not getting paid anything to do this challenge. I actually lost money on it so DEAL WITH IT LADIEZ. Del Mar furnished me (and two other Glamourbloggers) with a fan and $800 to buy stuff for the makeover. I ended up spending more because the space I chose to makeover is at my parents’ house and I am a REALLY GOOD SON (after you see the transformation you’ll wish you’d birthed me).

Okay so I lied. I am getting paid. PAID IN LOVE. There is nothing more fun than taking your mom shopping and buying her stuff so I guess that counts as payment.

The only rule in the challenge was that I had to use the fan outdoors. Which at first sounded difficult then I realized that outdoor fans are actually kind of glamorous and fun. This is what the fan looks like:


And here’s what my parents’ deck looks like. Before you get all grossed out by that wall color don’t blame them for it. They moved in recently to a flipped house and the flipper made some interesting (read: cheap ass and tacky) design decisions that they are slowly fixing. One of them was painting the outside of the house the color of really ugly Maybelline foundation.

IMG_0434And now I’d like to go on a little rant about flippers. You know, people who take cheap ugly foreclosures, fill them with builder grade garbage, and then finish everything off with stainless steel appliances and granite countertops and TRICK EVERYONE into thinking they did something sophisticated? Those people. I wish they would all die in a fire.

IMG_0430The outdoor space in question is right outside the kitchen. Previously, it was super dark and depressing because the flipper painted everything brown. The paint, mixed with the corrugated metal roofing, made the whole thing look trailery and gross.

My goal with the space was to make it look more unified with the bright, happy interior of the house.  The house itself has great lines, tall ceilings, and a ton of natural light. It sits up on a hill on the outskirts of Santa Rosa, in glorious Sonoma County and has a 1970s modern vibe (though some obnoxious neo traditional accents have been added to it over the years, slowly being removed).


3d3ca14276eb994f2277dc8cf3166ccbI love the casual, eclectic vibe of this image. Totally up my parents’ alley.


My mom probably would have liked something with this crazy color situation, but I hate orange so that was out of the question.


I liked this space because it seems to have the same “Wait are we inside or outside?” kind of conundrum my parents’ deck has.


This was my color inspiration. I just love how sophisticated and spare it is.

So yeah, that’s the situation. I have that ugly ass brown deck, a fan, and $800. Can I save my parents deck from being all dark and trailery? ONLY TIME WILL TELL.

Don’t be a deck. Come back next Friday to find out.



Inspiration Images Via: Whatever Forever, Toast & Nutella, Decor Com Gosto, The Colored Door, Paper Blog.

12 thoughts on “I Entered A Design Challenge And If I Don’t Win Everyone Will Die

  1. You hit the nail right on the head. Flippers, generally, have no sense of aesthetics. Aaaand, “Of course I want granite and stainless steel” is so HGTVish… Isn’t it HGTV’s responsibility to train people to not be so stupid? If so, they are not doing a very good job.

  2. I probably latched onto the wrong thing amidst your beautiful post but I have something to say to all the Flippers and Flipper focused HGTV Reality Shows that are putting money in Home Depot’s pockets and trash in our landfills. Decent home buyers don’t need You Mr. Flipper, to make shitty design choices, leaving the rest of us to rip and strip on the slim chance you left a detail intact from the original design. You are not fooling anyone except people like yourselves who wouldn’t appreciate good design if it slapped them in the face. How’s ’bout I take that container of matte paint in “Swiss Coffee” and roll a coat of it on the entire inside of your home…tile, baseboards, cabinets, fixtures. Just stop already.

  3. Um, hello, you are hilarious! How have I been reading Emily’s blog for years and not noticed this? She needs to link to you more. JK, she’s perfect. ALSO, I was super interested in reading your post about how you made the frame for the large scale art, which I got to through Emily’s blog the other day, but I COULDN’T EVEN READ IT BECAUSE YOU ARE TOO HOT. Seriously. I don’t know if it’s because I just turned 32 and hit my sexual prime or what because I literally had no interest in the words and only wanted to scroll up and down and look at your hotness which was so prominently displayed in those pics. 😉 I’m adding this blog to the rotation fo sho.

  4. Can’t wait to see what you do! I do have to take a moment, though and defend *some* flippers. I am a flipper, but don’t judge me right there! I agree with you about most flippers and have the same complaints and jeers. Granite counters and stainless steel appliances do not make a house nice. Most of the time they’re lipstick on a pig. I’m probably the minority out there flipper-wise- I flip because I care, not simply to make a quick buck. I don’t use builder grade shit and I do everything I can to keep (or add) original character to a house- even if it means schlepping all over the area to pick up a restoration hardware chandelier from a craigslist seller for $50. I am an interior designer with a innate desire to rescue old houses, not a contractor who wants to make a buck on someone else’s misfortune. Again, though, I do turn my nose up with you on most ‘flips,’ but know there are a rare few of us out there that actually CARE.

  5. Your parents are so lucky! You’re definitely their favorite child now if you weren’t before (; Can’t wait to battle it out with you (; Your reveal will ROCK!

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