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Bringing In The Blue

An Intro to Orlando’s Guest Bedroom

You Guys! It’s Orlando today on the blog, and so much is happening you are going to FREAK OUT when I tell you. If you haven’t been following my shenanigans on Instagram, you have to start because my life is RIDICULOUS right now. To make a long story short, I’ve skipped town for a few months and am currently living at my parents’ house, writing my book, and running my design business remotely from Sonoma County (about an hour north of San Francisco, think wine, vineyards, and redwoods). I have a strict deadline for my book (which is still untitled so plz pass along any title ideas, K?) so I have to finish everything by May 31 and I’m FREAKING OUT ABOUT IT.

I left town because my life in LA has been insanely stressful and I basically went broke redoing my dumb kitchen, funding photoshoots for my book, and starting my own design business. BUT DON’T FEEL SORRY FOR ME. Yes, I lost my boyfriend, my job, and my home (temporarily) all in the matter of a few months, but I’m genuinely loving being up north and I’m getting tons of reach out from potential collaborators, sponsors, clients, etc. I have the feeling that next year is going to be my superstar year where I become disgustingly famous. So if you’re thinking of buying tickets to the Orlando Train, I’d suggest purchasing them now because next year they are going to be INSANELY EXPENSIVE. Yes I know how cocky that sounds but keep in mind that I’m literally writing this from my parents house and my mom made my lunch today (greens from the farmers market with salmon over it, so delicious!). I’m supposed to go back to LA in June but part of me is feeling like “NO THANKS.” It’s amazing here and I feel like the five month panic attack I was having is finally over. YOU GUYS WHAT IF I JUST LIVE WITH MY PARENTS FOREVER BECAUSE IT’S SO PEACEFUL AND GLAM HERE? Basically sounds like a pitch for the sitcom from hell. HELP!

Also, FYI, I’m still running a design business in LA with multiple clients and an employee so yes I’m a huge loser and nearly homeless but also, like, I’m still doing stuff, so don’t be scared. DON’T WORRY I HAVEN’T TOTALLY FALLEN OFF THE HORSE SORRY I’M YELLING SO MUCH ALL I DO IS DRINK COFFEE AND EAT ORGANIC FOOD HERE. I think sometimes when stuff falls apart it gives you the freedom to look around and just be like “Whatever, the world is a vampire, I’ma do what I want!” which leads to creative productivity. Also I’m starting Crossfit tomorrow and then you’ll all be sorry! And by “you all” I mean all my exes who dumped me for being gross and disgusting and fat.

Okay, so we’re not here to talk about how I’m a 75 year old grandfather of three who lives with his mom and dad. Today’s topic of convo is my guest bedroom. Which I got done just before I left town so I could shoot it for the book (IT LOOKS SICK YO!). But you’re going to have to wait to see the full, sexy reveal until later in the week. Today we’re gonna chat inspo, planning, and get an idea of the pieces I want to use in the guest bedroom.

The apartment was painted all sorts of buttery colors when I moved in. I love eating butter, but I hate it as a paint color, so I quickly changed all of them. I chose a dark, saturated color for the guest room, New Providence Navy from Benjamin Moore, because the room gets the least natural light of any in the apartment. You might be wondering at this point why I have a two bedroom apartment. Basically when I was looking I was in a bit of a time crunch and all the one bedrooms in the neighborhoods I was looking in were so expensive that a two bedroom made more sense. A) If I wanted to get a roommate and B) So that I could host guests to come stay with me to help me deal with the ABSOLUTELY OVERWHELMING SENSE OF LONELINESS AND SORROW I was feeling post-breakup. Weirdly, there’s only a few hundred dollars difference between decent one bedrooms in West Hollywood and decent two bedrooms. So I went with an apartment that has a guest bedroom. Deal with it, America!

Also, two bedrooms means twice the decorating fun, DUH!

I love a navy bedroom. I love it so much I painted my last bedroom that color (the previous bedroom was actually Ralph Lauren Iron Blue which was apparently discontinued FOR A REASON THAT REMAINS A COMPLETE MYSTERY TO ME). I just love a dark, romantic bedroom. And navy is such a pretty, velvety color. Emily taught me a while back that darker rooms look better painted a color with some pigment to it. A lot of people think painting a dark room white is going to make it look brighter but that’s normally wrong. Usually painting a dark space white just makes it look shadowy and dingy. So I’m going full-on gorgeous navy for the guest room AND I’M NOT GONNA LOOK BACK (except at these pics of my old master bedroom that I totally miss tbh COME BACK TO ME, ORCONDO).

One of the issues I’ve run into with my new place is that I have all this art I’ve collected over the years and no idea where to put it. So I’m going to figure out a way to incorporate it into the decor of the guest bedroom. In looking at all the art I have, about 90% of it is blue so I’m going with an all-blue art scheme in here. It’s going to be so peaceful my guests are going to LOSE THEIR MINDZ!

I’m working with a luxurious linens brand called Cultiver to outfit both bedrooms with sumptuous linens. I actually simplified my previous bedding scape a bit, less textile mixing, just a combination of linens. It’s really pretty and feels a bit minimalist/90z Calvin Klein in a hot way.

I’m taking a hint from my old apartment (that we shot for this blog AGES ago) and doing a cute gallery wall. It’s been a while since I’ve done one of these in my own home and I love them. They’re the perfect way to put all your art in one place so you can ogle it. I hate hanging gallery walls for other people because I always make like 5000 extra holes in the wall and I hate when clients stand behind me as I destroy their walls. But doing one for myself is fine because I don’t care if I ruin my own wall.

Before I moved in, the room was panted grey below the chair rail and butter yellow above the chair rail. I’m not a fan of this color blocked look for chair rails (one color above, one color below, and the chair rail painted the trim color). In my opinion it looks better to just paint the chair rail the same color as the bottom half of the wall or paint the whole wall the same color. I’m going for a simulated wainscoting look by just painting the lower portion of the room white. This also helps create contrast and gives some space between the reddish floor color and blue walls.

The furniture plan for the space is pretty eclectic, a mix of a few vintage items with very inexpensive furniture (I was doing this on a #nonspon MAJOR budget, so everything that went into the room is tres affordable). I’ve said it before and I’ll keep saying it until my head explodes, you can get away with anything if you have good art, so the furniture in the room may be super cheap, but the overall look is going to be high-end because the art is good. GET! EXCITED! Below is a small preview of some of the furnishings I’ll be using in the room:

Resources: Wall Color Benjamin Moore New Providence Navy, Wainscoting Benjamin Moore Super White, Ceiling Pendant, Gold Wall Hanging, Tom Killion Block Print, Traditional Rug, Nightstand, Table Lamps, Striped Duvet Cover, White Sheets

Check back on Thursday for the MIND BLOWING REVEAL and to hear more stories about how I’m a fully-grown man who lives with his parents. Maybe forever. Bye!

***Photography By Zeke Ruelas, Tessa Neustadt, and Orlando Soria.

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    1. I agree with Kelly’s response to this post…they are full of humor and purposefully over-the-top drama. I think they are absolutely hilarious and fun to read! They always make me smile…keep ’em coming, Orlando! So sorry to hear about the tight spot you are in, but it sounds like things are on the up-and-up! Excited to see the guest room reveal.

    2. Also, if you follow him on Instagram and see his instastories it all makes more sense. Once I was able to actually hear his voice, his posts crack me up. But also maybe you just need to get his humor and I do. I really find him refreshing.

      Cant wait to see your room on a budget. Expensive guest rooms are not in the cards for me. Enjoy living with your parents. I know they love having you to themselves again and you won’t have them forever. Cherish it. It is such an unexpected gift to you both.

    3. I think Orlando’s Posts are some of my favorites! You see so much humor and personality in his writing.

    4. That’s so funny – Orlando’s posts are my absolute favorite. I love that he pushes things until they are absurdly dramatic and then at least one step more. He literally always makes me laugh and his instastories are the absolute best.

      “Reporting live with a piece of lavender as a microphone”

    5. Agree. I find him shrill and annoying. But each to their own, I come here to read Emily’s voice and nobody else compares. I like the team voices much better than Orlando’s though.

    6. I love Orlando’s posts – and may I dare say, even much better than Emily’s fashion posts. I hope he’ll be a guest blogger here more frequently. His posts and his designs are totally worth re-reading and pinning!

  2. Orland, first off, will you be my best friend? Secondly, you are freaking HILLARIOUS. My girlfriends and I are currently sharing your quotes back and forth with each other. Not only are you a fantastic designer, but a hilarious writer. Cannot wait to read your book. Keep doing you my friend. XoXo

  3. Great Post! And Orlando — your instastory has been hilarious these past couple weeks.. I laughed so hard when you rode your bike with the brake on. And that scary mask that kept showing up, made me die. Thank you for killing it!! You need to be on TV again, please make that happen with Emily!! Love you guys. Xo Xo

    1. I totally agree with this!!! Orlando’s Instastories are priceless!! “Hello, this Orlando, I’m using this piece of lavender as a microphone”….YASSSS!

      1. Have to agree- I am living for your instastories. Keep them coming! And your parents house seems so lovely (creepy mask aside) and sometimes being surrounded by family is just exactly what you need ❤️❤️

    2. Wanted to chime in about these Instastories to say I AGREE. The day of the shoot that you woke up for 4 a.m. for, I was dyyyyiiing

      You are god’s gift, Orlando.

  4. I’ll take one ticket on the Orlando train because you are amazing! I love everything, especially the wall color. Your honesty is refreshing and I hope someone makes your sitcom. Can’t wait for the book!

  5. I am laughing so hard at making 5,000 holes in the wall! I thought I was the only reprobate that did that! I can’t imagine having a client watching me. I’m seriously dying!! As always, Orlando, everything you do is fabulous and I want Emily and you to know that I have been a fan SINCE THE VERY BEGINNING. I fell in love with her on design star and I watched every episode of her show. I love you guys!!

    1. Me too! I’m actually proud of myself if I only make 3 extra holes per picture!!! The eyeball method sometimes fails me. 🙂

  6. Thanks for this! I always love the Orlando posts (esp now that I’m going through my own breakup). But I just decided to move my office and paint it a navy-peacock blue, so this is perfect timing! I may just copy your paint color and rug… Can’t wait to see the reveal. And yay for the year of Orlando!

  7. I just love your posts Orlando. You have such a spirit that it is unbelievably cute, funny, playful and professional at the same time. Wish you all the best! And don’t wait for the next year to be super famous and happy, you still have 6 moths for your miracles to happen!
    Hug!

  8. Glad to hear that you’re doing well! Living with your parents in Sonoma County doesn’t sound so bad 🙂 I’m the same way about working out – 100% motivated by REVENGE! Can’t wait to see the reveal.

  9. Gorgeous room!!! Snaps m’ friend. And sending good vibes to you up in wine country, take care of YOU!

  10. You’ll have more fabulous success Orlando. You have many gifts that are to be shared with your waiting fans!

  11. Who cares if you live with your parents in such a beautiful town? If they love having you, it sounds like a win/win situation! I’d stay in Sonoma with my parents (who make me delicious lunches) before I’d live in LA by myself any day! Loser or Genius? – you know my vote ; )

    Can’t wait to see the book reveal. Keep moving forward Orlando!

  12. Orlando, you make me laugh so much with your Instastories. Good for you for continuing to be bold and pushing through.

  13. Sounds like you’re killing it with these new opportunities! So glad for the update, and CAN’T WAIT for the book! And the reveal! So true about the art vs. furniture. So true. That striped bedding will be in my dreams.

  14. Keep on keepin on, Orlando! Life is journey! Good luck in Crossfit! I hope you fall in love with your Fit Fam and have a great time learning something new!

  15. Dear Orlando, most every comment I read about you is “He’s so funny, he’s so hilarious.” You ARE, but please don’t feel that you HAVE TO be funny for us to like you. Don’t put that extra pressure on yourself. And don’t feel pressured to lose weight, etc–not for us and not for revenge, but do it for yourself (if you do it at all). We’ll always love you no matter what because you’re worth it!! If someone has been cruel to you in the past, that’s their problem, not yours. In no way is that your fault.
    So anyway, I like those nesting tables from Target, but $365 for linen sheets is just redunkulus. My sheets are from Muji–I like ’em.

  16. Orlando, I LOVE YOUR POSTS!! Clever and hilarious. I’m looking forward to your guest room reveal, upcoming book release and trying to find you on Instagram!?

  17. Orlando, I love your design style, your sense of humor and your posts – they always make me smile! The first half of this year has definitely been rough for you, but I think you’re about to embark on the “Year of Orlando!” Please don’t forget us little people when you make it big! 😉

  18. How glad I am for you that you’re with your parents for now. You’ve clearly been hurt and there’s nothing like having your mom cook for you–generally fuss over you–to remind you that you’re lovable and worthy.

  19. Can’t wait to see the guest room. I love, love Orland’s posts! They are hilarious and still have ideas.

  20. I love the mix of wood and tones – it’s beatufifully done and feels so organic versus picking up a set of furniture. Beautifully done.

    Also, that guest room is massive!

  21. Orlando, I seriously love you and all your insta madness. I laugh out loud often, which I need for my own reasons. You are so silly and genuine and so funny. I wish you lived near me so you could help me with my curtains and interview me with like a wooden spoon as a microphone. I am so on the train already! And your style, obvs.

  22. You are delicious and everything is going to be excellent in the end. If it’s not fab, that means it’s not the end. Keep going. XOXOXOX

  23. Two things: you have no idea what a gift it is for your mother – just in time for mother’s day! – to have you living with her for a bit. Truly. It will be many years before my kids are old enough to move out, but I already know for sure I would LOVE it if they came back for a while. She knows how talented, funny, genuisy, and lovable you are, so she has no reason to worry about her sweet Orlando, so let her enjoy mothering you again. What a treat for her!
    I have been coveting the photo of snowy Yosemite you made into quintets since the original reveal of Orcondo. I’m throwing myself at your (well-groomed) feet to BEG for access to that photo. A digital download for a modest sum? Pleeeease? DON’T MAKE ME COME TO SONOMA AND SNATCH THE LAST BIT OF LOVINGLY PREPARED WILD-CAUGHT SALMON OFF OF THAT PLATE OF LIGHTLY DRESSED ORGANIC GREENS

  24. What about “Hommemaker: Creating the home of your dreams with humor, grit and glamour”. Something like that. I don’t like “whimsy” in a room. But I love me some humor. And you’ve got truckloads. When I think of the right way to describe your brand, I think creative, humorous with some diy. And don’t skimp on the design of the binding. When styled on a shelf, it makes a difference. Erin Gates knocked it out of the park with her book.

  25. Love your posts Orlando and wondering if your parents have room for another guest – I’m kind of sick of being a responsible adult right now! Can’t wait to see the big reveal!

  26. I rarely laugh in a way that makes actual noise while reading blog posts. These two lines succeeded:

    “Also, FYI, I’m still running a design business in LA with multiple clients and an employee so yes I’m a huge loser and nearly homeless but also, like, I’m still doing stuff, so don’t be scared.”

    “Also I’m starting Crossfit tomorrow and then you’ll all be sorry! And by “you all” I mean all my exes who dumped me for being gross and disgusting and fat.”

    Never stop doing you, Orlando. #neverstop

  27. If drama means laughing out loud while my eyes pop out looking at fabulous rooms, more please. Also, for some reason I suddenly miss my parents. Thanks, Orlando! xoxo

    P.S. You do not waddle. Definitely more of a saunter.

  28. Hang in there Orlando! Gorgeous guest room. Keep the hilarious posts coming. And I’m ready to buy tickets for the Orlando train!

  29. Laughing so HARD omg one of the best posts ever. Also hungry for salmon now so thanks for nothing but also thanks for everything? Still laughing

  30. I want a gallery wall in my living room, but am filled with fear at the idea of making holes in the wrong places in my wallpaper. Agh. At least with paint you can usually cover up mistakes with a Q-tip and some leftover paint.

  31. You spread joy and beauty and laughter! I’m sure your mom is so happy to have you home for a while! Been laughing so hard at your instastories. Thanks for being honest about your life. It’s refreshing!

  32. This post has me envisioning you singing Captain Hook’s (yum) song from Once, lol. “Revenge, revenge, REVENGE is gonna be mine!
    Do an instastory of that, k? K.

  33. I had no idea that the design with the gallery wall/navy couch was yours, Orlando! I love that room and have been using it as inspiration for my living room. Can’t wait to see your guest room and the book!

  34. oh how I love thee Orlando!! keep it coming, all the silly, witty, self-deprecating you-ness. your design talent is only outdone by your inner light….even when you’re sad. BTW, I need some tickets on the Orlando Train, LOL!
    question, the color says navy, but it seems to have a teal undertone, is it?

  35. I have been on the Orlando train for years.

    I can’t wait to see this, and I’m so excited about your book!

    1. LOVE LOVE LOVE Everything about ORLANDO!!! Style, On File !! Hilariously Sexy Design to The MAX! Rockin’ Sockem Design, Via Orlando!! Do. Not. Change. One. Thing…….except your strive for excellence, beauty and happiness…….it’s CONTAGIOUS!!!! Consider me a patient !!!

  36. Omg that rug is going in my living room fo sho. Also painting my living room that swag ass shade of blue. Now I just gotta convince my man. Thanks Orlando!

  37. Orlando is right. He NEEDS a sitcom of his very own. And we need to see him re-designing the world according to Orlando ASAP. Can’t wait till next week.

    I need to start drinking coffee so I can write in all caps all the time too.

  38. My love to Orlando!

    You are beautiful inside and out beyond being a super talented human being.

    It takes guts to admit to hard times and I can tell that you are comin up to a major upswing in your professional life.

    You are already a star in my book!

  39. Orlando, I love you! I’m sorry there a re just a couple folks who don’t understand your well timed hyperbole, making fun of yourself, and SERIOUS SKILLZ. You most certainly are the funniest person on this blog, and to me, you and Emily are the best writer’s on this blog with well-developed style/voices. Celebrate yoself up there in your little Sonoma-nest while you heal from the massive heartbreak that we all know can temporarily tare a person apart- as you finish one of the biggest creative projects of your life!!!! You know the Japanese art of Kintsugi? When a piece of broken pottery is mended together with veins of gold and becomes more beautiful than it was before? YOU next year darling. Cheers!

  40. I love Orlando, he is the guy I want to knock back cocktails with after a heavy bout of thrift store shopping. Then we can wrap ourselves in vintage silk bathrobes and tell each other that we are fabulous. (Because of course we are!) His posts are warm and funny, keep them coming.

  41. It’s just not fair to anyone that you are both so funny and so talented. It’s a good day when there is an Orlando post to read! Thanks for making mine!

  42. OK, first of all, you are amazing. Please keep writing, it is saving my soul!

    Second, you absolutely SHOULD stay in Sonoma County because I visit family there during holidays and I would be THRILLED to bump into you in some artisanal cheese shop or other hipster locale that keeps popping up every 5 seconds (a random encounter, in a totally non-stalkerish way of course).

    Lastly, I have an idea for your book title. Ready? “Orlibro” Get it? Orlando + Book (in Spanish). You don’t even have to pay me royalties for that gem, it is yours. Just keep being you – brilliant and heart-crushingly honest. 🙂

  43. Orlando, thank you, your honesty and words just make me smile. I wish I could dance with words as you do. You have a remarkable talent and I agree you are ready for your career to burst into hyper mode, you are so brave AND have worked very hard to get to this place. Go for it, love to see success and to know what it truly costs in so many ways, thank you!

  44. How are we only just discovering you! This is fabulous! Going to check out some other posts now. The deep blue wall is just gorgeous and your interior photography is excellent! It can be really hard to photograph an interior without losing areas and without making it look smaller than it actually feels. Great idea with all the pictures on one wall. We are dying to do this too! Especially after seeing your inspirational job!
    Much enjoyed post. I would love you to check out our wallpaper, especially our Birds and Flowers design, we used a blue background which is SO close to your blue!
    Off to explore your site! – Laura