Lo and Sons – Whats in my bag?

I have ‘same place disorder’. Its up there with ‘inability to stop watching Bravo syndrome’ and ‘Instagram thumb’. Its nothing to be worried about and yet it actually causes me a lot of stress.  It’s a condition where you are unable to put something back in the same place. I have to consciously stop my hand, daily, from putting my credit card in my back pocket instead of its designated slot in my wallet after a purchase. When it comes to organization I’ll tell you this much – its VERY hard to be me. I’m about as organized in my personal life as Charlie is tan – not very at all. And yet it actually drives me nuts and I get so frustrated with myself constantly and it becomes a huge source of stress in my life.

Whats in my bag?

It’s in all aspects of my home life – my closet, my bills, my files and yes, my bag. I received this OMG (Overnight Medium Bag) from Lo and Sons 6 months ago and have been using it a ton (especially when traveling) because it’s so lightweight and it has pretty supreme packing and organizational abilities. Its been helping me combat my ‘same place disorder’, and it’s getting better. When I have a bag with just one big pouch, it could take me 15 minutes to find my keys – 15 minutes where I’m cursing myself, desperate to be someone else for just a day to see how the other half-lives.

I thought I’d show you what  I put in my bag (and how) because we are all secret voyeurs and all I want is in your bag. Oh and just to be clear, this is me on a good day – showing you my balled up napkins, wads of business cards that i’ll lose and 9,000 bobbie pins just doesn’t seem necessary. You guys get it. And just posting photos seemed boring so here’s a fun little gif/movie that really shows it in action.

It’s a lot of stuff that can turn into a total snow show inside my one big pouch purse, but if I’m good about combatting my ‘same place disorder’ then it makes my life easier.

Whats in my Bag Lo and Sons Emily

Here are all the features that I love about it:

lo and sons favorite features

But here is the real clincher – It slides onto your roller suitcase (and yes, this is the black one, which Ginny has so I could show you both). Since I travel a lot and now have been traveling with a kid you have no idea how much easier this makes it to get around. My purse or small carry-on doesn’t flip over or fall or I don’t have to hold onto two handles. I simply slide it on, and then grin with total satisfaction as it stays upright on its own.

lo and sons_suitcase feature

See? Look how satisfied I look. VERY. Oh and that’s the entrance of my home, which I know y’all haven’t seen them much of. I’m not 100% done with it – I want to change the lucite table to be something more solid, but its the perfect size/scale right now so I’m just waiting til that perfect piece pops up.

lo and sons emily door

lo and sons bags by door

There you have it – the Lo and Sons bag, OG and OMG bags. Right now they are 20% off, y’all. They aren’t cheap, but they are crazy practical because they are so lightweight, have lined pockets (that are coated so yes, it can be a dipaer bag, too), a shoe insert (for your disgusting gym shoes or your back up flip flops, and the sliding on the roller bag thing is a winner.

Now who’s got tips for healing my instagram thumb?

EMILY SHOPS: the fabric district

I’ve lived in LA for 7 years. SEVEN YEARS. At first I hated it – as in I stopped bothering to put on mascara because I would cry it off immediately. It took me two years to like it, and 3 years to NOT want to leave it. That might sound like a lot of time but LA is a tricky place full of tricky people and weird neighborhoods. It never feels like a traditional city and even more rarely feels like a community – at first.

As a stylist it was EXTREMELY hard to maneuver because unlike New York it’s spread out over 30 miles, and a lot of it is kinda unsightly. Most people aren’t heading deep into the valley for the best welder or going to Pomona for reclaimed wood.

But we stylists do. So I figured it was time to document this stuff and bring you along for the ride.

First stop? The Fabric District in DTLA (Downtown LA). Thanks to our friends at NatureBox (healthy snack delivery) for sponsoring this excursion. We love snacks while we are shopping (see this post about the flea market), especially in DTLA where the street food isn’t exactly GMO-free.

Emily Shops the Fabric District

I started shopping the fashion district for jobs probably a year after living here and now, after 7 years, I don’t get lost that often. It’s the area around 7th -9th Street and Wall – Maple that is the heart of the fabric district.

It’s an insane neighborhood near fancy/hipster restaurants like Bottega Louie and the Ace Hotel, but also near skid row which is a not so happy place full of hundreds (if not thousands) of displaced homeless. It makes for a really interesting, dynamic, strange, sad, exciting and intimidating shopping destination to say the least. So let me help you with the fabric part of it at least.

One of my favorite go-to upholstery fabric stores is Home Fabrics. When I only have 1 hour downtown I DEFINITELY only go here. It has the best selection of velvets, linens and a lot of other less cool fabrics that I skip (but that are probably popular), and its sheer volume, selection and price makes it worth it. And yes, it’s for everyone (not just wholesale).

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downtown-la-fabric district

emily michael lavines fabric district

Those velvets, below, are sooo beautiful. We used a lot of them in The Fig House and the Ban.do projects. Some are as cheap as $17.95/yd and some are more like $35.95. There is no minimum yardage and to swatch (get a sample) you simple ask one of their dudes. Don’t even think about bringing your own scissors.

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Meanwhile check out this pretty floral fabric ALSO WHAT IS FREAKY BRADY DOING TO THE FABRIC IN THE CORNER? Hands (and all body parts) off the goods, sir. Weirdo. Although in a way I look way more like the weirdo because I’m all posing casually for the camera not knowing that there is a freak show behind me. I think he was just trying to get out of the shot but instead he photo bombed hard.

fabric district_tassles

Besides fabric they have lots of upholstery trimmings; tassels and fringe and tie-backs galore. A lot of these are super decorator-y, but if you comb through enough you can find some chic ones made from cotton and way more paired back, less Marie Antoinette and more Laurel Canyon. Although sometimes those crazy ornate ones can be totally awesome.

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That’s the crew. Doing the team posing thing (Brady, Ginny and me).

emily brady ginny home fabrics fabric district

Who is that dutch boy in the middle of that silly stacked head photo???

They also have a section of $1.99/yard ‘no cut’ (meaning you have to buy all the have). I have found some decent stuff in here and if you are having a party or event this is a really good alternative for tablecloths or runners.

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If you don’t want to shop through all the fabrics or of you are looking for additional ones they have books and books of fabrics upstairs that you can peruse and then either have someone go get for you or order it if they don’t have it in stock. You can purchase these books for $25 each (which is what we do for our favorites).

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Shopping for fabric can be exhausting and make you very hungry so this seems like a good time to snack on, you betcha, NatureBox.

This is like the mid-podcast sponsor shout out and it’s important. So thank you, NatureBox. I love your snacks and your support.

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I go for the more ‘nuts and fruit’ based snacks. Brady would eat sugar for 9 meals a day if we let him. When he first started working with us I asked him to go grab a bunch of ‘healthy snacks’ from Trader Joes. I was picturing dried fruit, nuts, maybe some hummus and chips, fuji apples, etc. He came back with low-fat cookies and chocolate covered pomegranate seeds. He actually thought those were healthy snacks. It was VERY hilarious and once we stopped laughing I fired him.

But we don’t have to worry about it any more because we have NatureBox a-plenty in the office now. One of the best things about it is that its abides by a strict policy of  ‘No High Fructose Corn Syrup, No Partially Hydrogenated Oils, No Trans Fats, No Artificial Sweeteners, No Artificial Flavors, No Artificial Colors’. I don’t have to think about it – it does the healthy part on its own. And there are a ton of different snacks (over 100) to choose from and you can change it every month.

emily naturebox snacks fabric district

We ate the Toffee Almond GranolaPumpkin Spice Nom NomsMexicana Mango Fuji ApplesMango Almond BitesCitrus Kick Almonds.

Also Ginny has such pretty hands. I constantly look at them with such envy. I want to cut them off and sew them onto my wrists so I, too, can have long luxurious un-bruised, un-pale fingers instead of my sausage fingers.

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So we headed out to 9th street, between Maple and Wall street where there is fabric store after fabric store. A lot of them are selling the same stuff but some of them are surprisingly good. Maybe not for upholstery but for pillows, curtains and definitely costumes and parties. So much sequins, organza, fur, etc. A lot of it soo tacky, but a lot of it could be rad.

You can’t predict what is inside so if you have the time just go down there and pop into as many as you can handle.

Here are some random tips/info for you to know:

1. You can negotiate at the smaller stores. Sometimes I feel like they are making up pricing on their whim. Michael Levine and Home are not negotiable (well, sometimes they might give you 10% off if you buy A LOT) but the other small stores are.

2. You can buy 1/4 yard if you want a larger sample (some places only do 1/2 a yard). Sometimes the smaller samples are so small.

3. Park in a lot – not on the street. You’ll look forever for street parking and then you’ll get a ticket if you are one minute over.

fabric district_grid outside

I mean, $1.99 for crazy colored lace yardage has got to be good for something. Its more event or art installation-y but so fun.

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Also if you are in the market for foam, there is foam. Just sitting there on the street. Get yer foam, y’all. Also you want to know what is expensive? Foam. And styrafoam. you know why? Because they have petroleum in it so when the gas prices go up, guess what else goes up? The cost of foam. Mind blown. That is why if you think your foam is good in your chair you should have your upholsterer keep it instead of getting new foam – it adds a lot. However if you are buying it used from someone you don’t know, then get yourself some new foam… trust me.

brady and emily fabric district

Next up is Michael Levine. Now I’ve been shopping at Michael Levine for a long time. It has two stores – one for apparel and one for upholstery/drapery. I go into both. The upholstery/drapery never has super fresh new hip patterns, but they have good simple velvets, linens and sheer fabrics, and its way easier to navigate, much less crowded and better customer service.

emily brady ginny michael levines fabric district outside

I’ve actually scored a lot of fabric in their ‘Designers heaven’ row that is $6/yard. You can’t get a ton of yardage but if you need under 5 yards you can probably get that there.

emily brady ginny michael levines fabric district designer fabric

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The apparel side has a TON of pretty awesome fun trendy patterns that can be used for simple pillows or sewn into napkins, table runners, etc. OR if you are crazy like I am you can buy 1/2 yard and photo copy for cute unique wrapping paper.

The service here is mediocre on a good day. Every now and again I’ll get a nice employee to swatch fabrics for me, but it’s always a circus in there. It seems like there are 45 employees at all times, but it’s like winning the lottery to get someone’s attention long enough to BUY LOTS OF FABRIC. I’ve never understood businesses that make it difficult to spend money. I hope they read this and change. They need some serious customer service improvements. There. Sorry, it’s just that bad.

emily brady ginny michael levines fabric district

There is also a Michael Levine annex that is upstairs on the upholstery side of the street. It has crazy cheap yardage of not soo good fabric but I’ve found some decent stuff in there for events.

Also there is a strange amount of tutus downtown. Fun for the whole family – if you family is into that sort of thing.

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Also miniature hats. I found this little guy and immediately had to have it for Charlie, and it quickly became the inspiration for his first birthday party in a few weeks. (Geez, I’ve GOT to get on that).

emily fabric district hat

So that’s the fabric district. It’s a very wonderful and weird neighborhood full of fabric, people (tons of people) parking lot flaggers, fringe, tassels and foam. Lots of foam.

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downtown la fashion district map

Alrighty folks, a big thanks goes out to NatureBox,  a company we support, whose sponsorship allowed us to bring this original content from our lives to your computer screens. For those of you that do not know about NatureBox – stop living in the pre-interstellar age (if you have yet to see the movie you will not get my reference) and GET with it. They are a subscription service that offers the ability to discover and enjoy healthy snacks on a monthly basis, delivered directly to your doorstep. They come in resealable packages that have a generous portion size in them (i.e. one bag is just enough for Ginny and I to share, or just the right size for Brady to inhale in a matter of moments).

The lovely folks at NatureBox were kind enough to send some FREE snacks through to my readers, so click HERE to head over to their website and get started. Free trial is available for new and US subscribers only. Not valid on gift subscriptions and may not be combined with any other offers.

In addition to free snacks… I feel like Oprah right now (you get a snack, and you get a snack, and you get a snack) 2 lucky readers will each win a free 6-month subscription to NatureBox. All you have to do is click HERE and then comment below on which of their snacks you would be your favorite. Make sure to leave your email address when you comment so that I can get in touch with you once we pick the lucky winners. (Open to US readers only. Must have a US shipping address and the contest open for a week – so the more you comment the more likely your chance to win is)

Obviously a video of us shopping never hurt, so for your viewing pleasure here is Brady, Ginny and I in action.

Also one time – I did this (below) probably to be funny but decidedly just kinda weird.  2.50/yard. ‘no cut’.

emily-in-fabric

* I climbed in and laid horizontally on the fabric rolls. Apparently to be ‘wacky’.  Also I’m terrified of myself if I still have this blog when I’m 68. You guys are going to get some real gems of insanity that you haven’t even seen glimmers of yet.

*All photos by the lovely Jayme Burrows for EHD. Video by Scrunch Media.

*This post was in partnership with NatureBox. Thank you for supporting the posts and brands that make this original content happen.

Tucson vintage finds

We spent the weekend in Tucson and I might have spent some time shopping. Brian and his brother and uncle were at the UofA/Washington game and then golfing so I took a little Emily/Charlie time to peruse the local goods. There is honestly nothing that makes me happier than the possibilities of a whole new city of thrifting and antiquing. The excitement is palpable.

First stop: Toms Furniture Finds.  It was pretty good as far as how much stuff they had, but the prices were closer to LA prices than I wanted to spend.

Toms Antiques

All the things above were pretty great and had they been in LA I might have splurged, but I didn’t have a purpose for any of them right now. That brass Paul McCobb table (in the middle) was tempting. Its $250 which is just too much for a side table that I don’t need (plus shipping) but if you live in Tucson and need a simple modern investment side table, go grab that one.

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There happened to be a flea market on that sunday at Brandi Fenton park where I met some very nice readers and met this pretty adorable rug. Charlie wasn’t totally impressed.

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Copper Country Antiques was pretty awesome and I specifically loved the enthusiasm of the exterior and signage.

So here’s what I came home with:

Emily Tuscon What I came home with

The lucite/brass folding chairs were from Tom’s and they were $119 for the pair. I’m hoping that shipping won’t be more than $60. I can just picture them around my Saarinen table in the studio (although, man I wish we had four) or maybe I’ll keep them at home for extra seating for the 3 hour bachelor premiere in January. Not sure.  But I have a serious thing for folding chairs which probably stems from my years living in New York. They are in perfect condition (still in plastic) which is hard for lucite and brass which is probably why I snagged them.

That adorable rug was $15. So cute. Then I snagged a couple of adorable baskets ($6 and $8), some brass butterfly napkin rings ($8) and that shawl which has metallic thread in it that you can’t see. I think I might make it into a pillow because its pretty cozy and soft. It was $12 I think.

Lastly that string art is big, like 24″ wide and is going to look pretty dope on my credenza or in my shelving. It came from Copper Antiques.

And that’s what I bought in Tucson. I didn’t make it to Bon Boutique after all, but I will catch it next time, for sure. Thanks so much for all your recommendations. We had such a great time and relaxed very hard.

Which would you have hoarded? Which is your favorite?

Reader Question: Picking A Rug for My Space

Its been too long since I’ve tackled a reader question – so here goes. This one is from Kate in Stockholm:
This living room of mine in Stockholm needs a rug. Here is the question: Do I go dark to draw the space together, or lighter? Fluffy or patterned?
I have a mixture of earthy yet clean style but I love midcentury-mod and want to bring more of that in. Any thoughts overall for this living room?

 

photo 1msd

Ok, you are off to a good start – great gallery wall (I appreciate that it isn’t just a dinky collection right above the sofa) and your sofa/coffee table are really simple and easy to style with.

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So you have a few choices and it really depends on a few questions/answers:

1. How energetic do you want the space to feel? Right now there are no patterns, which is absolutely fine because you do have a lot going on the walls. But if you want the space full of energy then bringing in color/pattern would definitely achieve that. But if you want it to feel less energetic, more calm, then keep to a solid.

2. How low maintenance are you? I love a light rug, truly, but I’m not, well, clean enough to deal with them. Lighter rugs definitely make a room feel bigger, and this room doesn’t look that big to me so it could help. But going even more medium toned will be so much easier to care for. I have a white rug in my guest room that is BEAUTIFUL and far away from outdoor spaces, and isn’t used often, so its fine. And then in my master bedroom, where I REALLY wanted a light-colored rug I bought this quilted hide because cowhides are pretty much indestructible. You just wipe them off with a wet towel. They are also not terribly cozy, as you can imagine, but they reflect the light in such a pretty way and allow you to have white without the maintenance of white.

So here are some that I like that could look really nice in your place – some more affordable than others. Again, if you like a big high contrast pattern then these might not be the right selection, but I think that in a small space with all the art on the walls that a big high contrast pattern would make the space look small and busy.

The first group is soft texture without much pattern (so easy to hide dirt/stains, but not busy:

Solid

1. Safavieh Denim Jute, $199- $299 | 2. Vines Wool Rug, $169 – $999 | 3. Pencil Stripe Rug $195 – $895 4. Harper Denim Rug $195 – $945

Then if you can handle a bit more pattern, I’m pretty into these guys. Again, not toooo busy but busy enough that it adds more energy into the space:

Pattern

5. Threshold Criss Cross rug $74.99 – $249.99 | 6. Painters Rug $595 – $1595  7. Beaded Rug $149 – $289 | 8. Loloi Rugs, Anzio $139.00 – $539.00 | 9. Scallop Rug, $99 – $199 | 10. Multi Pixel Rug $249 – $999.

Finally, if you want to splurge on a white cowhide, I love these guys very much:

Hide

11. Natural Hide Rug  $695 – $1900 | 12. Scallop cowhide $495 – $2950 |  Bristol Cowhide $713 | 14. Jasmine Cowhide $549 – $976

There you go, Kate! Hopefully you still read this blog because I can’t seem to find your original email. If anyone knows Kate from Stockholm tell her that I’ve finally answered her reader question.

To submit your reader questions, email them to brady@emilyhendersondesign.com  (also, hint, the better the photo and the more specific the question the easier/most likely it will be to get picked!)

Trolling Craigslist… Madison, WI!

Madison, Wisconsin is actually somewhere I’ve always wanted to go to. A lot of people say its like my college town, Eugene, Or, and just a really fun/liberal little oasis in the middle of a quiet state. Meanwhile, now all I see is some really great thrifting. So lets get on trolling …

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trolling craigslist madison vintage rope lamp

1. $50 Vintage Rope Lamp This is awesome and weird and I want it REALLY bad for my house. Its modern and simple, but with rope makes it feel all warm and scandy.

2. $195 Vintage Campaign Dresser Yes, we are still doing this. I have a white one and have used a couple in different projects and I still really love them. This one isn’t cheap but its cheaper than a new dresser and wildly cooler. Plus that is a goooooood color.

3. $50 Pair of Mid Century Chairs Oh, its just a cute little pop of color for your breakfast nook. I’m not wild about the legs, but the shape of the chairs and that bright color make up for them. Plus they are $25 each and thats nothing to be mad at.

4. $95 Hanging Bamboo Chair Great price, classic chair, just overall wonderful. You can buy these new for $400 but obviously that is quite the price difference. I’ve used one in a few different projects, namely HERE.

trolling cl madison industrial desk and chairs

5. $20 Per Industrial Chair Such a great price for pretty adorable chairs. So perfect for a creative office space.

6. $300 Industrial Desk I love your shape but not your price. Too expensive, but would be such a cute entry table, right?

trolling cl madison settee and hamock

7. $75 Vintage Settee  Pretty darn cute. Expect that to be around 8 – 10 yards of fabric, and probably $600 – $800 to recover. Expensive, sure, but cheaper than most new sofas. I’d take off that skirt, for sure. This could be cute in a poppy color, or go safe with a navy or charcoal.

8. $30 Vintage Hammock So cute. Paint that base white and throw the hammock in the wash and you have a really adorable napping place for the spring.

trolling cl madison headboard and chairs

9. $75 Vintage Iron Headboard I love the shape of this headboard and it could be awesome in black.

10. $450 for a set of 6 Mid Century Chairs Beautiful. Kinda expensive, but again, cheaper than buying new except for Ikea. I think if you could get for $400 for the set it would be better, but I’m into them regardless.

trolling cl madison mcm chest

11. $80 Pair of Vintage Whicker Chairs A steal. Such a cute shape and at $40 a pop it is an insane deal. Go get ‘em.

12. $150 Mid Century Credenza I’m not freaking out about this guy, but it is a good simple shaped dresser for a really good price.

trolling cl madison brass table

13. $75 Brass Vintage Table Set Now I AM freaking out about those chairs. Take them away from the table, reupholster them in a more modern color, and maybe get rid of the ‘fan’ detailing in the back upholstery. The shape of the base of the chairs is RIDICULOUS. So simple.

14. $40/ Set of 4 Mid Century Dining Chairs AGHHH. Such a good price for a lot of personality. $10 a chair? Are you kidding? Amazing.

15. $75 Pair of Mid Century Chairs. Yep. So cute. LOVE. At first I thought that the part on the top was an upholstery detail but I now realize its for your head to keep your greasy hair off the actual chair. And that is gross. Just wash your hair and get rid of that guard.

Pretty good, Madison. Pretty good. Where to next?