Duck Fat Tater Tots and some pretty photos of Big Sur

I promised myself i’d give you original content. But then i also promised my body that i wouldn’t force Duck Fat Tater Tots into it.  Unfortuntely that was before I met Nashville:

Indeed.  Tater tots, fried in Duck Fat, as if there is any other way.  Otherwise known ‘my appetizer before i got a wedge salad drowning in blue cheese dressing and pork loin drenched in bourbon syrup’.  And there wasn’t one, not two but THREE dipping sauces – we all know that my ketchup owns my condiment heart, but i can dabble in bernaise and anything with mayo as well.

I’m flexible like that.

I’m in Nashville, hanging out with HGTV’s Taniya Nayek and 6500 men (and 500 women) from Sherwin Williams.  And I’m having fun, yes i am. 

This guys name is Phillip Morris.  

I mean, PHILIP MORRIS!!!! I’m sure he gets good tables at restaurants, but unfortunate letters in the mail. P.S. he’s not THE Philip Morris, in case you didn’t figure that out.  I guess there is also a guy on twitter who’s name is ‘SherwinWilliams’ and under his bio it says ‘i’m not the paint company. i am a man’.  And this makes me laugh. 

Behind me in that pic you can see the new line of paint palettes from the Sherwin Williams/HGTV partnership. And the color palettes are awesome.  More info on them later – stay tuned.

Meanwhile i thought i’d show you some old work of mine – to keep it original, but still design oriented while i’m away. These were all shot by David Tsay for Coastal Living, and to be clear, i didn’t design the rooms – just styled them.


This was in Big Sur, but i forget the name of the design firm.  I just put the stuff on the bench and made the bed etc.  I’m very good at putting stuff on benches and am strangely bad at making beds – which is why i’m not a bed stylist. And in case you think i’m kidding, yes there are bed stylists out there (Official shout out to Steven Whitehead, the best and chicest best stylist in the world).  

Pretty bathroom, with awesome herringbone painted tiles.  I want to ask the designer if they were painted and fired before installation or if they are painted afterwards because if the second option is possible, then i’m dying to know what kind of paint can possibly stick to tile in a bathroom. And if you know this answer, please give it to me and then i will give you a digital kiss, without tongue, of course.

And lastly an extremely pretty house, designed NOT by me, but yes styled by me.  All for Coastal living.  All in Big Sur, all shots taken by the amazing David Tsay. 

Off to Honky Tonk bars.  Last night we ate at the Patterson House (awesome, soooo pretty, too, thank you all for the suggestion) and the night before at Merchants on broadway.  Tonight we are headed downtown to the honky tonk bars to line dance, scoot my bootie and pretend to drink malt liquor, otherwise known as ‘hair spray that you put down your throat instead of on your head’.  I prefer the latter. 

  1. Justine

    Benjamin Moore sells a primer called Styx that works on tile. I used it in my bathroom to paint over pink and black plastic tiles, not cute, and it actually looks pretty good now. I love that chevron pattern though, makes me wanna take a trip to the paint store and whip out my painters tape.

  2. Brittany

    We bought a house last spring from a perpetual smoker who had lived in the house for 50 years. The bathroom, which looks as if it's the original 1928 bathroom, had subway tile that was yellowed (and browned) from Elanor's smoking. We're going to rip it all out at some point but HAD to do something with the tile and didn't want to invest in something non-permanent so we gave painting a try. We used Olympic's basic white semi-gloss and painted all of the tiles. We didn't prime, but used three coats, and didn't seal it. It's been 6 months and haven't had any peeling. And there's no exhaust fan or any ventilation right now. It's great. The tile looks new and it cost us like $20 to do. Best part: even our most discerning friends can't tell it's paint. Great success!

  3. Mary

    My hubby works for Sherwin-Williams and was in one of the sessions you participated in. He asked later that night if I knew of Emily Henderson and I was like, duh, I love her! Can't believe he didn't get a pic with you (insert frowny face). Love reading your blog and following your great designs.

  4. Sunnie

    I'm glad Nashville's bein' kind to ya. It's a good thing I read this post the "morning after" your Broadway debut or I probably would have been poking my head into Tootsies looking for you. Subtly, with giddy side glances of course.

  5. amyks

    Fun, Fun, Fun!!! Tater Tots take me back to my grade school hot lunch days, yummy! But Tater Tots in Duck Fat, hmm, not sure about that flavor profile :)

  6. Emily, if you have time.. stop by Clarksville. It's about 45 min north of Nashville. We have some amazing thrift stores and warhouses!

  7. I would never guess these photos were styled, which is how it should be right? It looks super natural. Also supernatural. The Martz lamp and painting in that last photo…why did you not steal them? I guess they frown upon things like that?

  8. I painted the bathroom tile (including the tile in the shower) in my old rental in NYC with Benjamin Moore paint…. I don't think it was any special kind. And it worked just fine. I was only there for about 14 months, but in that time it held up.

  9. I wish I had known you were in Nashville! I hope you had a great time. And I hope you got to eat at Baja Burrito and do some rock climbing at Climb Nashville. And I wish I could have had you come style my house while you were here. :( Oh well, I hear Patterson House is great.

  10. Kathryn

    Hi Emily, love your writing and design style, also adore the 50's style fabric with the pale blue background on the chair in the bedroom you styled. It would go perfectly on some chairs I want to reupholster for the beach house I will own one day in the future (forward planning!) any ideas where I could find it? Cheers from Melbourne, Australia.

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  12. The bathroom design looks good. I just don't like the green color and I don't know why. Why don't you try any dark color.