Welcome back to Tea Over Interiors, this week Dee is traveling for work but can’t leave you without an episode. This week we have the full episode with our interview with the inquisitive tourist, in case you missed it. It’s longer than our usual episodes but it is informative and fun! Next week we are discussing how to make sure your home is properly ventilated. Enjoy the episode as always we love you for listening. Share the pod with a friend 😊 — Send in a voice message: https://anchor.fm/teaoverinteriors/message Support this podcast: https://anchor.fm/teaoverinteriors/support
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Welcome to the inquisitive tourist. My name is Nate Ralph, and thank you for joining me. For those of you already listening. Welcome back. And if this is your first time here, welcome to an ever-growing community of listeners worldwide. We’ve now here, 82 countries. If I could also ask you to leave us a review on the podcast platform that you use, I would really appreciate it as it will help other people find the show.
If you could also share today’s episode with just one friend, it would be greatly appreciated. Now traveling to new places often leaves us feeling inspired. The problem is when we come home back to familiar surroundings, it gets drab and boring. Sometimes our life can feel super, super dry. Our senses can get bored easily when we’re in our own home in familiar surroundings.
Well, have you ever thought about how to alleviate that feeling spicing up your home to tickle your senses and keep you smiling post vacation? Well, my guests today, yes, there are two of them. Our practicing interior designers who love chatting about how to make the home a beautiful place. It’s the first time I’ve done a three-way interview.
So bear with me. I hope it goes well. And I hope I can do these ladies justice. So let’s meet them. Their names are D and Atia D Andia welcome to the show. Hey, hello, having us Hey Nate, you are more than, more than welcome. Who’s who? Who’s, who? Who’s D and who’s Alicia. So I’m D and I’m Alicia. Fantastic. So tell us about yourselves.
Who’s D you start off Alicia, tell us about yourselves. All right. So we are Alicia D of Trusdale Morrison design, and we host a weekly podcast every Thursday called Tio interiors. And we met about oh 10, 12 years ago. Probably. Yeah, absolutely. And we’ve been best designed buds since then we do staging. We do custom window treatments.
We do interior design. We just do whatever we feel called to do when it comes to design. Would you say that’s correct, Alicia? Absolutely. We have had the great fortune of doing a lot of different styles of design. We do not design in one particular style because we really believe in listening to our, and we try to get what is best for them.
So we do a very intense evaluation of how people live and, and what they want to experience in their homes. And we deliver that specifically. So not designing for ourselves. We are designing for the person or the client. And they’re home and the way that they like to live. I love that. So there’s that, there’s that personalization personalization there isn’t there.
Absolutely. Yeah, absolutely. And I, and I was talking to D about being on your show today and how you can really trans form of space based on your vision. And some people who travel as you say, they they’re, they’re excited about being in their spaces when they are abroad or when they’re traveling. But when they come home, they feel a little like blah, because they were so enthralled by the environment.
And a lot of times it’s not so much the destination. It’s the fact that they’re staying in a hotel or, uh, Airbnb or some type of other residential environ. That makes them feel something they’re just like, so enthralled with it. And they’re realizing this is nothing like home. Mm. And it doesn’t have to be that way at all.
And that’s what we believe in. We can bring that into their home and they can experience that all the time. I do not like to travel. I like traveling, but I don’t like staying in other places because I’ve made my home so fantastic. Wow. For me. Wow. Interesting. Yeah. Amazing. It’s fantastic place in the. But it is a fantastic place for me.
I can’t wait to get home you. Yeah, I have, I have a four day rule. I’m ready to get outta there after four days. If I’ve gone someplace, get me outta here. I wanna go home. you must love your home. That’s amazing. I do. Yeah. Yeah. My home is very warm and cozy and it’s very neutral feeling and it’s just very soothing and easy on the eye.
There’s not a lot of visual clutter and that’s how I live as well. Um, my husband loves the. He loves the feel of like a hotel and to be kind of treated, you know, it feels like he’s in a five star resort every day mm-hmm . So I kind of use the same principles that they use at a hotel. And of course we add personal touches so that it doesn’t feel so, uh, what’s the word, does it feel so not person.
So it feels more personalized. Absolutely. Yeah. And so, and that’s staged, right? Yeah. Not like staged or anything. So it feels lived in, but it does feel like a resort at the same time. And so that’s what, that’s how we like to live as well. Yeah, no, I love it. And you said that you’ve known each other for 10 or 12, is it 12 years or 10.
A C 2009, 12 years, 12 years. I can tell. Cause I, I it’s already evident within what, 3, 4, 5 minutes. I think it’s five minutes we’re in. And, uh, yeah. The chemistry between you ladies is, is already quite evident. I think the listeners would, would agree with that. Um, it’s a shame I can’t ask them live, but, uh, yeah, that’s, that’s very evident.
so that’s, uh, that’s, that’s a great, great thing. But you, you also mentioned that you do a, um, a podcast as well, tea over interiors, and I need to get something straight, obviously I’m from, from England and, uh, for all the people here who love tea, is that English tea or is that tea from another land? We need to clear that we, we need to a close up.
If you give the wrong answer, the podcast is straight over right now. oh, my. Well, okay. D I’ll let you handle that one. . Whoa. Okay. So the tea is from all over. We, we have a very expansive pallet when it comes to tea, we drink Ang, we drink black, we drink Roys. We like to try everything. And I know that that’s not proper, but, um, well, it can be, it can be but, um, you know, At my husband, he likes black tea with milk.
that’s good. That’s good. Yeah. Yeah. We, we, we we’re on site ground. We trained it properly. but Alicia and I, we like to sample all sorts of teas. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. So if you are a tea purveyor out there, you can send us some teas. We would love to talk about it on a podcast. You know, we come tea tastes with little chat about
Yeah. We do a quick chat about the tea that we’re drinking, but, um, yeah, so that’s, that’s where we are. We’re we don’t discriminate when it comes to tea. Yeah. Me Neith either it’s old tea equally, as long as it’s loose leaf, we don’t really do the bag tea too much cuz we know that’s dust. So interesting.
We’re very much into the loosely. Okay. Okay. But you take it black, you take it white. Same as me. It’s it’s it’s beautiful. Both ways. And uh, and of course you’ve got the herbal, uh, teas as well, which have certain benefits for, you know, for the mood and, and for the body as well. So it’s uh, we’re already getting into the ambiance.
I can just imagine you ladies sipping on your tea. You know, designing, coming up with some fantastic interior for like, uh, someone’s new home, you know? Yes. Tea is a great tea is a great way to calm you as well as, because once you feel more calm, you feel more inspired. And I just think of tea as like a warm hug.
And so if I’m skipping tea, while I’m thinking about designing a home, it’s definitely gonna be something that’s gonna be cozy and comfortable all year around. Yeah. There’s something very comforting. Isn’t there about tea, you know, you just get the home. Absolutely. Um, maybe it it’s, I dunno, like I’d, I’d be intrigued to know the results.
If they ask people in cold climates and warmer climates, how they feel I’m guessing or hypothesizing that the people in the colder climates, you know, when they get home, they, they obviously go for the warm drink, but either way, wherever you are, you know, having a warm cup of tea is just so cozy, you know, and added to that.
If you love your house, like you ladies clearly do, and you’ve made it that Haven, it’s just. It is, it is, it is. Yeah. And we, we’re very, um, to taking a really great tea and putting it over ice. So we’ve done ice tea since we are American, we do the ice tea and the sweet teas and the not so sweet tea, but we just love tea.
So we share that between us. Yeah. That’s nice. Where are you both speaking to us from, by the way today? So I’m in New York and I’m in New Jersey. Okay. So not over east coast. Massive. Yeah. Yeah. No, not, well we’re good hour, right? At least an hour. Yeah. Close to two New York, New Jersey and London. That’s that’s amazing.
And if I could ask you D and Alicia, what is your, your ambience currently describe the room that you’re in right now. Okay. Alicia, you wanna go? Sure. Um, so I actually was going to do. This, um, recording and our dining room, but I decided to come upstairs because it’s a little quieter up here. And so I’m in the master or what we call now, the primary suite.
the primary suite. I love it. Yeah. Yep. Very cozy. I’ve got a big postered headboard and drapery and a nice, uh, Flaco rug, which I’m really getting ready to get rid of, because that thing is creating way too much. Uh, little, I call ’em fur balls who knew I have designed with these for years, but I haven’t lived with one.
Now I’m thinking this thing is just ridiculous. I may as well have a little doggy up here. It’s crazy. that’s gotta go. It’s gotta go. Yeah. But anyway, it’s very, very warm and very cozy, but it’s all white, uh, excellent neutrals cream, a crew. Um, some. Kind of off light colors, not a lot of splash of colors in this room.
Mm. So it’s quite neutral. Interesting. It is. And, uh, and D how about you? So I’m in my guest bedroom, which is sorry, my guest, which is basically my room where I, you know, it’s like my, she, she, she didn’t, I guess you can call it and, um, it is linen walls and I have behind the bed. I have some linen style wallpaper, and I have a mid-century modern upholstered bed.
And I have, uh, two matching lamps that have gold with like a marble base. I have two side tables. And everything else in the room, the closet door is white. The bedroom door is white with the antique crystal doorknob. And I have, um, I have floor ceiling drapery with shears behind them and solid, like Offwhite neutral grapes.
You can say mm-hmm . Goodness me. Yeah. And, uh, I have a, an off white. Fluffy. It’s not a shad rug. It’s just kind of fluffy. It’s like a high pile rug under the bed and where I’m sitting, I’m feeling it’s warm today, but I’m actually, I have the window open and I’m feeling the beautiful breeze that’s coming off the backyard.
Is it very bring there today? Is it bringing? Yeah. Oh, that’s feeling a breathe. Maybe it’s cause I’m on the second floor. But, um, yeah, the breeze is blowing really nicely and I’m sitting on my bench in front of the window and I’m just looking out at the CRE Maples in the backyard and all beautiful flowers.
So I love this time of year. Yeah. Goodness, me not even Solomon in all his glory had an inner chamber, a raid like that, that, that was quite the, uh, that was quite the picture, uh, that you’ve conjured up. That word picture was so powerful. Um, I’m right there with you. I can just, I can picture it. Uh, wow. Wow.
Speechless. so Alicia, you mentioned yourself about, you know, you don’t like being away for more than four days because you love your house that much. So I dunno about youd, but in general, in terms of traveling, when it does come to traveling, uh, if you are gonna go away for four days, Alicia, where would you go indeed?
Do you go away for longer than four days? And if so, what, what type of trips do you do and how, and, and also mm-hmm, just added to that. How, how does your profession as interior designers affect or influence your choice of, of location? Hmm. So maybe I’ve had the good fortune of traveling all over the world.
And I did that earlier in my years as a designer. And just as you know, just in my personal travels, I’ve been to the Philippines. I’ve been to, um, of course I like to go to different Caribbean islands, but I haven’t been quite some time I’ve designed for clients in those locations. And my typical travel time, I think the, the longest time I was away was probably Greece and Turkey.
And that was 14 days or so, but. I think if I travel again and it’s gonna have to be more than four days, so I have to get ready. I really wanna go to Africa. I have not yet been and I would love to travel to Africa. So I was gonna go to, but I didn’t. Um, when I was in Spain, I was going to go to, uh, where was I gonna go?
It’s very close to Spain. I just forgot Morocco. Yes. Thank you. Oh, we did an episode of Morocco, just a couple of episodes ago. Actually. It was absolutely amazing. Did you? Yeah, we had a, a guest called, uh, as Dean Elmo stack him and, uh, I’m glad I’ve remember. I mean, he is a wonderful guy and, uh, shout out to him.
He, uh, he does tours there. Uh, it it’s just, you know, FARs, Casa, Alan, the way that he would talk about the, uh, the colors and the, and the aromas and the music of the place. It, I, I think you would enjoy it actually. Um, I would, it’s evidently a very colorful, beautiful country. With interesting designs of its, of its own.
Yeah. Yeah. I would love it. Absolutely. Hmm, indeed. I guess you wanna say where you’ve been and where you’d like to go or, oh, okay. So, uh, okay. So when I’m, I don’t like to travel for too long because I do get homesick after a while. I do miss my environment, but I love to travel. I love to have an adventure, even if it’s just in my own state, you know, last year I had the fortune of working and traveling around New York state and I had no idea how beautiful it was in some parts of the state that I live in, cuz I’m so close to New York city.
And so, um, the longest I’ve been away has been a month and that’s been like in Florida cuz I was working on a design project. Um, I have gone to the Caribbean a lot. That’s my favorite. I really love Jamaica mag grill specifically. I’ve been to like The Bahamas and things like that. And I’ve stayed in some really awesome resorts, but yeah, it just, it’s nothing like being home and the cues that I get from when I go away, I really I’m a nature person.
So I really love trees and plants and flowers. And I love seeing beautiful gardens. Like wherever I go, I have to see what gardens are in the area. Recently, I was in Florida and I went to this beautiful mansion with gardens. It was like a tourist place in, uh, I believe it was winter park, Florida, and I just love looking at all the different species of trees and plants and things like that.
And I like to see if any of those plants I can use in my own home. Can I use some of those in my home to brighten it up? Cause I love the colors. Mm. And so I really love the colors that are found naturally in nature. So sometimes if I see a color in nature that I like, I’ll take a photo of it. And when I get home, I try to search for the fabric or something.
So I can make myself something in that color. But right now I’m really into the, and so that’s the accent color in my bedroom is the TES and gold. But when I go away, I like to observe how things are done. Mm mm. So when we’re talking about bringing. From of that, but vacation vibe, back home, a lot of times what people are feeling when they get back home is the visual clutter.
When you’re away, you have a break from your things. Yes. And believe it or not, you need a break from your things because some people have too many things mm-hmm , and it’s not that they don’t have good taste. It’s just that they like a lot of different things and nothing seems to be cohesive. And so they don’t know where to put anything and they just scatter things around.
Or maybe I’ll put like four objects on this little shelf and clustered them together. Cuz I saw somewhere you should cluster things, you know? And , and then they have these clusters and they have all these different things around their house and it’s creating this visual noise, this visual clutter. And so they’re not able to relax as easily.
And so when you go away to a resort or a hotel. There’s very little visual clutter. Uh, there’s only beautiful, like, you know, maybe, maybe, uh, furnishings or wall coverings and things like that, depending on where you’re staying, you know, some five star resorts that really go all out. But there’s not a lot of, there’s just not a lot of anything.
There’s not a lot of ornamentation. Everything is very calming and soothing. And I think when people get home, that’s what they really miss that calming and soothing. They’re actually taking a vacation from their things, from their job, from their life, good point from all the visual noise in their lives.
And so that’s really the heart of it. And when you get back home, that’s some of the things you need to edit. So. You know, check out your, check out your bathroom area. When you were in the hotel, what kind of things did they have in the bathroom that you were able to actually live with? If you went like maybe overseas or something that you were actually able to live with for two, three weeks and you didn’t miss anything from your home.
Now you can go home and start editing things. You did not miss while you were away. Hmm. Because it turns out that you can live without it. And so I think once you come to that realization and you’re able to go around your house and say, okay, so then the bathroom, they had X, Y, and Z. I brought X, Y, and Z with me.
That was all I needed, but I did forget this one thing, but I actually didn’t need it. So I guess I could live without that. Let me try living without that for a while you put that away. So I have to see it and then, you know, start designing your. in the way that you saw the visual cues at the resort or the hotel or wherever you stayed, that you really liked, like, what was it that you really liked and start stripping some things away mm-hmm and adding them back slowly, the way that you noticed you saw in the hotel, or maybe not add them back and see how you feel with living without these things for a little while, and see if you can find that piece and that calm and that tranquility for yourself.
I bet you can. Yeah. And so the same thing happens with your bedroom, you know, with your bedroom. If you notice the be in hotels in a lot of places, there’s not a lot to it, you know, there’s the, the flat sheet, the top, the top sheet, a blanket, maybe a comforter and you know, like five pillows, maybe if it’s a king size bed and they’re turning them to the side now.
Right. Mm-hmm so there’s not a lot. So you just wanna get into that bed. And a lot of times people don’t realize the way they make up their beds with all these colors and all these extra pillows. It’s not visually calming because now in your mind, it’s like, okay, I’m gonna throw all those pillows on the floor, or I’m gonna put all those pillows on my bench by my bed.
Or I gotta, you know, there’s like a lot of work to go to sleep. , which we don’t wanna do when we are shattered. . But when you wait, there’s not a, there’s no barrier to sleep. So remove certain barriers that you’re giving yourself, you know, and a lot of it has to do with that visual clutter. Yeah. So I’m sorry.
I talked a long time. No, no, that, that was some really insightful comments there. Uh, D and, and Alicia, and anything else to add on, on, you know, what inspiration you take when you, when you come back from somewhere? Absolutely. And I’m glad that we have such D. Uh, perspectives because sh I, I share many of the things that D said, I do agree with them and I have done some of that paring down and I do encourage my clients to do it as well.
The, the thing that really inspires me when I travel are the aromas and the cause they’re so different everywhere I’ve gone and I do carry those. And those are the things that bring me back to that experience when I am able to either recreate or bring those smells or those aromas into my own home. And many of them are in foods and in food preparation because of spices.
And I do take great care to either visit the marketplace when I travel so that I can learn about the different spices. If I’m in a good. Restaurant or hotel or someplace where I can ask what the spices are and do a little bit of research so that I can then purchase those. And, you know, the United States has so many different sections where there are specific markets for a culture or group of people.
I can go and buy those spices in the designated market places here. So I’ve tried since I love to cook, I will do that. I will try to make things that I’ve eaten when I’ve traveled and those smells and those aromas filling the house and, and being part of my, um, my experience of, of food preparation, sharing food with friends and family is always a, a really special part of my travels when I, and I do believe D you, I believe you were part of this.
Yes. Remember I did the recollect. Yes. And we all, that was huge. I had so much fun sharing that with my friends and family. Many of you had never had that. Right. And of course recette is a cheese, but it is a wonderful process of eating cheese on bread. And, and, you know, when I read up on it, maybe Nate, you can tell me, is that a street food in England?
Can you find recollect? Um, specifically, I mean, of, of course we, we have cheese with many things and, you know, like finger food and so on. I can’t say that it is that it is, it probably is. Uh, I mean, we have a lot of cheese and wine shindigs and, and what have you, uh, and I’m sure it could feature there, but, uh, I , I, I can’t say for sure.
I had, OK. I did it wasn’t in England, but it was definitely, um, it’s so it’s a, it’s like a Swiss cheese. It’s really a nice, lovely, hard cheese, but when you heat it. On what looks like, uh, a press of some kind it heats up and it oozes down and then you put it on bread and it is just delicious. And you can actually put it on potatoes, boiled potatoes, and then you can have all a bunch of different condiments with it.
It’s a, it’s a wonderful thing as we had so much fun doing that, but my planning, I’m sorry, go ahead saying, yeah, it was fun. It was almost like fond, but it wasn’t fond and it didn’t make my tummy. So,
so everyone prepares their own food on this little grill, so you can do it with meats and you can do it with vegetables and it was amazing. Yeah. So the point is you bring back these experiences and the traveling allows you to. Experience those things have, um, conversation with people in the different countries about their traditions.
And that’s the richest part of travel for me, it’s not just being someplace else because we already talked about the fact that I really rather be home, but if I could have those experiences without being away for a long period of time, I just need to be very wealthy. I need to, well, you, you could always meet those people and invite them back to your home and, and, and then do the cheese fondue there.
Right? That’s true. That’s true. but I mean, as interior designers, would you say that you are often in a, sort of a state of almost fascination when you are traveling? Like, are you constantly on the lookout, uh, for cues as, as you go, you know, you’re walking down the road and these aromas are coming and these colors are flying out at you, are you constantly, you know, your brain is there working in the background, you know, and you’re thinking, oh, I can, I can take this.
I can use this in my next design here and there. And ah, I spoke to that client. She wanted a bathroom with this, and I think that’s a nice idea. You know, it talk us through that. If you could, for me, it doesn’t happen. I’m sorry. Let just say real quick. Cause it’s not gonna be long for me. I don’t necessarily create a database or a, a, um, a bank of information that way.
Not consciously. I do very unconsciously hold those bits of information and data. In my mind and the strangest thing happens, they just reoccur. They just come up and I’ll say, I may not know where I was inspired, but I’ll remember the,
so it’s subconscious thing. It doesn’t definitely T literally that way for me. Okay. And, uh, UD. So I’m an, I’m an observer. I really like details. And I do pick up on a lot of details, but when I’m away, I am just, so I really just, I’m just there for the beauty and I admire things and I really love architecture.
So I will notice compositions and say, oh, that’s different. Or. You know, I’ll notice the way something is made and you know, the craftsmanship and how it differs from maybe here. Or sometimes I notice like, huh, this was not even made here. Cuz I can tell it’s not made very well. You know, this is just for tourist kind of thing, you know?
But um, I really just remember the feeling of the way a space made me feel. And that’s what I like to bring back like the feeling because a lot of times, you know, as designers, we, we are inspired, but uh, well for Alicia and I, we don’t. We don’t look at the magazines. We don’t rip off other designs. We like to do things our own way.
We’re S so we’re, we’re creative people. , mm-hmm . And for us, as you can see, as you listen to Alicia for her, it’s like smells sight sound, and it’s, she’s a baker. She didn’t tell you that part. She has this fabulous kitchen she made for herself so she can bake me beautiful town cakes. Can I come over? But that’s the best way.
She’s always got some eggs out and cream cheese people. I dunno, uh, get you a good friend, but, oh boy, you’re gonna have loads of people knocking on your Jo on your door in New Jersey for, for cream, cheese and salmon on sourdough bread. But she, but, um, You know, it’s really just the feeling like how this space is making me feel this way, because of this of that, you know, a lot of times it’s the high ceilings, or sometimes these ceilings are too high.
I feel like it could be a second floor here. You know, I’d make a loft here, you know, but, um, usually when I’m aware, I’m with my husband, so I don’t dwell on those things too much cuz I’m into whatever he’s picking up or whatever he’s thinking or whatever we’re doing. So, but I do just, I remember the feelings and sometimes I just get lost in the storytelling of places.
Like I recently went to Savannah, Georgia and uh, you know, we went on a, a carriage ride and. You know, they took us around to all these different places and just telling us the history and telling us about how people used to use pineapples as like, they were like these sacred gifts and other people, you know, they’d make these beautiful pineapple displays and they would be in stores and you could rent them.
And I just thought all these things would like so amazing to me. Right? Yeah. Yes. And so it’s, it’s the way I feel in a space. It’s. It’s the culture, it’s the storytelling, you know, and how can you bring that back to your home and create your own story in your own home? What’s the story you want your home to tell?
You know, and it’s just, it’s just those feelings like we should said, you know, you take up the sight and the sounds and the. The smells you take in the smells and you bring those back with you and then that reminds you of vacation. And then you take the cues of how, you know, the cleaning schedules of how things are kept so neatly.
And you don’t see, you know, that they need to use vacuums and booms and dust pans. And, you know, they need, they need these instruments to keep the place tidy, but you never see it, right. Mm-hmm you never see it. And so you create those spaces in your home, the back of the house, you know, the, you know, while you create all the magic front, when your guests come in, when you come home after a long day, you know, creating your home really for yourself is so important.
So that’s what I get fascinating about is like, and how other people live in other places and how they live with so little. But in America, it’s like gotta do a target run every week. You gotta do home goods. You gotta do DJ. Next. We have a lot just, you know, we’re bombarded with so much images and it’s, it’s great that we have so much abundance here, but we don’t need it all.
No. And it brings that clutter back home. Doesn’t it. And, and like you, you mentioned that paradox of like, we have to keep our homes tidy, but then how stupid is it? If we keep the Hoovers and the dust band and the brush and whatever else and the cloths and blah, blah, blah, all there that adds clutter and defeats the very purpose that therefore in the, you know, in the first place.
Right. Exactly. Exactly. So it’s just like, you know, I take those cues sometimes and you know, I’m a. And so, um, that’s one of the things that I got into as a designer is that I realized how much I hated, how, how many things people wanted to put in a room, you know, people would say to me, oh, but what about this sliver of wallets empty?
What can we put here? Should we put a light here? Should we put a SC? Should I put in, should I put a floor lamp? And you know, would drive me crazy? Like I literally scream in my mind. Sometimes it will come out loud, but it’s just like, why do you have to put something everywhere? Yeah. You go, simplicity can be key.
Right. And then, yeah. And that’s like, when you want a luxurious space, think about the luxurious spaces you’ve been in. They’re not Maxim, you know? Mm it’s like so true. Some of it can be, but it has to be done so well, you know, and most people can’t pull off maxism it just looks like a mess. Mm. And so I just, you know, just like.
You gotta, you gotta give yourself, you gotta give yourself a. And you could do that at home. You don’t have to run away from your a house, you know, that’s so true. You feel like you need to give me an Alicia call. We’ll come give you a breath of fresh air and you can feel so good back at your own house again.
oh, I love it. I love it. If someone has been to a vacation where, you know, there is sorry, a location where there is a beach, um, you know, obviously not all locations have a beach, you know, sometimes you’re in, you are inland, um, and there’s no beach in sight, but if you have come back from, you know, a vacation where you’ve been near a beach and you’ve been enjoying surfing and being on that beautiful white sand and under the blue skies and the coconut trees or whatever it is, um, how can you rec recreate that beach vibe in a house?
I mean, because I’ve, I’ve been to a few friends’ houses and you know, you’ve got like the, the hammock, for example, just a very, it’s not even an expensive, you, you, you put hammock up and boom, you kind of have that feeling of. You know, put a little, uh, poster up of, uh, you know, a tree, a Palm tree swaying, you know, but it wouldn’t be swaying because it’s a picture, but, uh, you get, you know, you get what I’m trying to say.
Maybe if you had, if you’ve had a few GTS, it swaying, right. So we can fix it that way. But, uh, I mean, have you got any suggestions for how to recreate that beach vibe in, in one’s home? Oh yeah, I think in backyards, I dunno why more people won’t do it, but I was telling my husband that I want like a sandbox, not an actual box with sand in it, like a little kid, but I want an area designated with sand and you know, a place where I could play horseshoe and just what I love walking on sand.
I, you know, I’m not a grass person cause I have allergies, but I do love grass, but just not a lot of it. Um, this to me is very hard to take care of, especially like in New York, but cause our weather is, is weird. Mm. But um, you know, just an area where you can have some sand, you know, and then of course you do have to have a way that you, you have to clean it up so you don’t track it through the house, but that’s nor there.
But even if you live in a small area, even if you have like a small outdoor space, I think you can do a lot with it by creating zones and sections. You know? So maybe you have your little section here where whatever you did on vacation, you thought was fun. Maybe you went to Miami and you played something while you were at a bar or whatever, you can put that in a little corner or whatever, but you can create these different areas.
You know, there was a time when Tiki bars were very popular in people’s backyards out here. I dunno if they’re still doing it, but you know, cuz everybody wanted that Tiki vibe. But you can create anything. If you just have a, even a slither of outdoor space, you just have to use your imagination and your creativity, and you can make any space feel like it’s in a, a whole nother world.
Mm. So nice. And Alicia, yeah, I I’ve actually done that with a client, um, recently, so they, so the client was a Marine is a Marine biologist and is no longer practicing as a Marine biologist, but has a desire to feel connected to the ocean. So it wasn’t necessarily a literal beach that they wanted, that they wanted to have an ocean inspired and a little bit of the sand and the beach.
So we, we did a very cool palette of blues. In the home throughout the whole space, we didn’t do, it was almost two bedroom apartment. Um, and uh, living room, the common areas were living dining kitchen, and then the two bedrooms. So it was a small place, so we didn’t wanna overwhelm it. But we did that. I see kind of clear crystal, uh, blue.
And then we did a couple of pops of coral. And then we did several pieces of what would look like something that you would see in the, uh, sea life. So there were, and there were replicas of course, and we did seashells and we did sand and hurricane candle holders. And we did lots of little trinkets that were.
On the console table behind the sofa. And we did all natural sand color furniture. So the entire space felt very much like it may have been a beach with the naturally occurring items that would be on a beach and sometimes you’ll get like a branch or a piece of wood petrified wood, and you would see that laying on a beach and you would see rocks that were splashed by water.
So we tried to bring some of those elements into the space so that it always reminded her of her experiences on the beach. And I think some of these things can be literal where people go to a vacation spot or they go to an island and they. To have Palm trees and sand not necessary. It’s really, in my perspective, it’s really what that space made you feel like.
And then you wanna bring those feelings and were visuals that those, it doesn’t have to be literal. It could just be something that reminds you of it. And it can be done very tastefully because I think for me, Palm trees and sand in the living room is just not gonna cut it. Yeah, no, you wouldn’t put that stuff in your living room.
That’s where bio. Exactly. Yeah. But it, it be done tastefully if you’re just really kinda identifying the items that made them or take them back to that time and that space. And especially with this client, she was very connected to her, her work. And it makes her feel so much at home. She really doesn’t leave there.
I asked her about two weeks ago. do you go, do you leave often? She said you did this house a while ago and I’m telling you I never need to leave this space. wow. She’s always happy though. Yeah. Super happy. Yeah. You could always bring, like we were saying, you can always bring like the feelings and the sight and the sounds, and you can do it in a very, in a very luxurious or a very clean, not kitchy kinda way.
You know, I’ve seen, you know, some people get tired of the kitchy because it’s just, you know, it goes, it goes outta time. Yeah. It’s over. But using the colors in. Yeah. Using the colors. That’s so important. Like the pallets and things like that. When you want it inside, you know, when you wanna bring it inside, mm-hmm, outside.
You could sometimes get more literal, you know, like if you wanted some Palm trees in your backyard, why not? If you want your backyard to look like a Florida backyard. Cause you know, a lot of people, Florida have Palm trees. Why not? You know, you want some sand so you can ground in the morning. Yeah. It, yeah.
But indoors that’s where you’re going to create those feelings and colors and yeah. Yeah. Those smells. Yeah. So we’ve, that’s so beautiful. We focus obviously on the garden space, you know, for those lucky enough to have one, which, you know, these days, especially in the cities as well, many people don’t have a garden, they might have a balcony, you know, where you can, you know, you can do many of these things that you suggested, the hammocks, the, the, the Palm trees, the sand, and, and what have you many people that I know have even tried to make their own little outdoor cinema.
Um, to, to have, you know, something enjoyable and it’s, it’s entertaining as well. It’s where you create memories, but focusing more on the inside of the house, because obviously, like you said, that’s, that’s where things take a bit more skill. Um, what about, for example, the, the kitchen, I mean, many people, I, I believe this, that the kitchen is the most important room of the house.
I mean, maybe not everyone would agree, but what is your take on that? I mean, we already touched on the flavors that, and the, you know, the ambience and, and the aromas that, sorry, the aromas that we, we experience when traveling, um, how does that translate? Into, you know, your designs of, of kitchens, uh, because, you know, we, we, we touch as well on, on the, uh, the baking and the, um, you know, that, uh, that you do, uh, Alicia and how, how does that inspire you?
Cuz obviously if you are making these beautiful creations in your kitchen, how would you then use these, uh, these recipes, for example, and, and the desire to wanna please your friends or, or your guests who come to your house, how does that influence the design of the actual kitchen that you use to create these pieces of food?
So if, if a, if a homeowner or a person really wants their space to be shared, that’s something that has to be taken into consideration when designing a space like a kitchen kitchens can be very intimate. I’m not a really, I, I, I guess I, I’m not open to really sharing my. As a preparing foods, I don’t really necessarily want anyone kinda watching me do that.
I’ve had a home where that was part of it. I, I had a very open kitchen and the open floor plan when I had a house in Florida and it was important for people to interact and, and be part of that process, but it was a vacation home and I want everyone to interact. But when I’m at home, my peaceful time is early, early morning in the kitchen baking.
And that’s when I work out most of my problems and difficulties. So it’s a private experience. I really don’t want anyone there. I wanna be alone. So, and so the final product is there yeah. So you have to really figure out if I’m working with a client, I have to find. And I spoke with this when we very first started, it’s important to find out how do you live in this house?
What is it that you wanna do in this space and how is this space going to serve you? So, for me, it was important to make sure that I had access to a pantry that had all of my bakeware, all of my, um, different flowers and the different, um, sometimes I have like infused like vanilla. Natural vanilla. And I would have all these different types of spices and coconut, and I need to have that accessible.
So I needed a special cabinet and a special pantry for that. And I have a little baking station and I have all of the different pots and pans that I use for that, my mixer. So you have to design according to that person’s practice and the way that they do whatever they do, if it’s cooking, if it’s baking.
So I think it’s important to figure out how the person wants to live in that space, how they wanna utilize that space. Do they need, I did, um, marble as my countertop because I wanted to be able to, you know, use my countertop as part of my process of preparation. And then I have an area where there’s a butcher block, counter space.
It’s not huge, but I have some area where I can chop. And do things that I need to prepare and set aside for later on that space. So the surfaces and the finishes are very important. You have to have conversations with people about what they want and how they want to utilize their kitchens, but kitchens are huge.
And that’s a, to me that’s a whole specialty area within design mm-hmm I, I think it’s a lovely, lovely thing to do. Not just because you wanna pick out different cabinets and the floors or different colors in the I’m sorry. And the counters are different because that’s, that’s fine. And that’ll make for a nice looking kitchen, be functional and you wanna be in there and you wanna use it and you want wonderful things to come out of it.
Real cooks need a real kitchen, like a, a functional kitchen, not just a kitchen. That looks pretty. Would you. I agree that real cooks need that. Like my husband would need something like that. But speaking as an eater, no,
I’m well about the tables and you know how I’m gonna be comfortable. No, I’m just joking, but no, I totally agree, Alicia, you know, it’s we talked about this before, like a Baker’s kitchen versus a chef’s kitchen versus, you know, a caterer’s kitchen. Like they all need different. They all have different needs and they need, they have different setups, you know, that they need, but at that’s very interesting.
I never heard you say how you needed your time in your kitchen. It sounds like your meditation time. Almost it is when you’re baking it. I like to do it in the morning unless I have guests and you know, they want to be part of that. A lot of times I do have. Family and friends come over and, and D was right.
I usually have my, my ingredients for my signature cream cheese pound cake. Those are always kind of at the ready they’re on the counter. And if you come to my house, I can whip up a cake in less than 45 minutes and send you home with it. And I love doing that. So I make sure that I have those supplies all the time.
And I don’t, I can’t tell you the last time I ate a piece of that cake. It’s not for me that I make that cake it’s for others. You know, it’s part of my, someone would say it’s a ministry in, in a way it’s, it’s part of what I, what I do to, to bless and serve people, because I know that they enjoy it. So it’s, it’s just, I don’t know.
You know, we all have our little quirks and that’s one of the things that I’ve just love to do. So, um, I do spend a lot of time take preparing. Things to take to other people that I don’t even eat. You know, I might rename this, this, this podcast cake is my ministry. I love the way that. That was, that was quality.
That, that was, I, I, I did think though, it’s funny when you said that you meditate in the kitchen, shouldn’t I come with a health warning as well, because if you’re like just sort of meditating and humming you couldn’t you like cut your, your fingers off oh Lord. And so what I’ve got, there’s so many ways to meditate.
not just the yoga pose. She’s quiet in your mind. She’s just quiet in her mind. You know, no thoughts are happening. She’s just on autopilot. Cuz she knows what she’s doing. I probably take a million times I could do it in my sleep, but it’s really important that whatever your practice is, whether it’s something that you do in the kitchen or something that you do when you’re you’re um, I have a sunroom and I do a lot of reading out there.
Or a lot of just meditating, I guess I can sit out there for hours and not even have somebody came to my house recently and said, the only thing this porch needs is a television. No, that’s what you’re putting. That’s not what my the boob to. No, thank you out there. But I love the beauty and quiet and peacefulness of early morning.
I could take my little tea out there. It’s wonderful. But you really do have to figure out how back to the same thing, how are you gonna live? How do you wanna live in that space? Where, what are you gonna do there? And then you kind of create the space around that activity or that living style. And if you notice Alicia was saying how her quiet signs in the kitchen, when she’s cooking, she likes to sit on the, the, uh, sun porch and read.
And so she’s creating these mini getaways. Each and every day or each time she does these things, she’s creating a little mini getaway. And for the listeners, I want you to think about a space in your home that you can create yourself a little mini getaway. That’s all for you at a specified time. If you live with other people, if it’s something you can claim great.
But if it’s something you have to share, maybe you let people know like, Hey, between such and such, you guys gonna have to find another area to congregate because I wanna use area for X, Y, and Z. You know, just finding a space for yourself to allow, you know, creativity to play or knowledge. You can love books and you just wanna curl up and read a good book for an hour or two, find a place you can get away in your own space.
Before you decide to book a trip to get away. right from your space. absolutely. I mean, the trip, the trips are great. There’s nothing wrong with it. They’re great. No, they’re they’re awesome. Travel travel makes you so worldly and more open minded, right? It really opens you up. But you can’t. If you, if travel is not your everyday life, you know, some people, that’s what they do every day.
They’re just in a new location, experiencing new things. But if you have a family you work or you don’t, you wanna stay planted in one place and visit other places on the weekends on, you know, a monthly. Then you still will need a space in your everyday life. Mm-hmm for yourself every single day. Even if you just steal five minutes, 10 minutes, you need a space where every single day you can get away within your own space.
Yeah. I think that’s such an important point. Isn’t it? Because like, for the majority of people listening, E even though many in the audience might be travel lovers. And so on the reality is that most people spend, you know, 90, 95% of their life at home, you know? Sure. Like you said, yeah, there are some travel bloggers and there’s people that are in a new location all the time.
But for most of us who are at home most of the time, even if it’s 80% of the year and we, we are one of those really lucky ones who can travel 20% of our year. You’re still at home, 80% of the time. So make it an enjoyable. Exactly and I mean, look, what happened with the pandemic? A lot of people realized they didn’t like their homes cuz they had to stay in their homes.
You know, I was excited to stay home. Are you kidding me? I have to stay home. I have to sit in my own backyard for a little while. I’m good. Let me check out the grass again, see how that feels against my feet. My, you know, the coldness against my toes. Let me go out there and check that out is hot, you know?
Yeah. So I mean, it, it is very important. Love where you live. And love visiting other places. So you could bring that back to of those. Yeah. Yeah. And that’s right before we, before we I’ve loved this conversation, I mean, before we wrap up, we’ve, we’ve spoken about, you know, the outdoor space, like the garden space and you already brought that to life.
And we, we moved on the kitchen, you know, we spoke about a little bit how we can share living spaces and in practical terms, or for those of us who share with other people, but when it comes more towards the end of the day, which is even for me here now in London, you know, and you know, I’m looking forward to, to getting a good night’s rest because I’ve had a really busy few weeks.
And, uh, when it comes to a good night’s rest, you know, we spend a third of our life in our bedroom or we should, you know, approximately speaking mm-hmm um, we touched on this earlier, didn’t we about the hotel beds. I mean, a good night’s sleep can be so hard to, to, to have it’s such a, a basic human necessity.
But because of our routines and, and, and, you know, it’s so stressful, uh, especially in the Western world, how can we have a better night’s sleep? What recommendations do you both have for those who are parents, for example, uh, for, for, for single people, for, for married couples, it could be for anyone business leaders or just someone with a really simple job.
It doesn’t matter. We could come from all walks of life. All we want is a good night’s rest. We all need it. What recommendations do you have? So I would say a long time ago, it would depend how you have your room set up the temperature, the bedding, things like that. But there is something that I read recently about sleep and sleep affects us all so differently.
Right? So it’s such a broad thing, and there’s so many reasons why people can’t get sleep one because sometimes they’re very anxious about sleep. They, they think about it all day, how they’re gonna sleep. What’s gonna be the quality. Are they gonna get enough? You know? And so that anxiety is keeping them awake.
A lot of times at night, for some people, some people, you know, they can have that anxiety all day, get their bed and still their, like a light. You know, some people have sleep apnea. There’s just different things. I feel if you are having issue sleeping, you should consider cognitive therapy, cognitive sleep therapy.
But there’s one important thing that I learned recently. And it’s about your circadian rhythm. And I think this was something I never realized if the first thing in the morning, when you wake up and you can expose your eyes, this is very important. Your eyes to sunlight for at least a half an hour before you start your day.
And during the day, making sure that you’re still getting sunlight. You don’t have to be in the sun, but you have to be in like a bright space so that your body knows it’s daytime. and then having low lighting in your home, once it starts to approach nighttime because of our circadian rhythm, we’re not bats.
So at night we, we get tired. We’re supposed to, if you’ve exposed your eyes to enough sunlight during the day, then it’s easier for you to rest at night and you could totally lay like on a pile of rocks and probably still fall asleep and have a good night’s sleep. if you’ve done these things, I’m not saying a pile of rocks, but right.
That’s one thing. And so that’s why they’re saying that, uh, you know, those open dons and, you know, offices that have lots of sunlight getting into them during the day is vital for the employees. Because if they’re in the same level of lighting all day, which is artificial low light, it’s not right enough for your eyes to understand it’s the sun.
then a lot of times those people are more depressed. They’re they’re have, they’re more stressed. They’re sad that they just don’t know why. And it’s because they’re not getting enough sunlight during the day. So their circadian rhythms are off. And at night they can’t, the me melatonin is not releasing.
Like it’s supposed to cuz your body has its own melatonin and it releases it at night. Once it gets darker and your eyes detect that difference in light. So that’s one of the things I’ve learned, but you know, Alicia will tell you about the bedding and everything like that. So take it away. amazing. Love the segue.
It’s so important to have bedding that allows you, especially women at a certain stage of life and men as well. Believe it or not, you, you have a tendency run a little hot, right? So you wanna make sure that your bedding is breathable. it’s cotton, or it has really wonderful light bedding in sheets. Like I have a tendency to only look for natural fibers when I’m looking for be, but some people that that may not be what they want to do.
Plus it’s typically a little bit more expensive when you look for those natural fibers than it is to buy like a synthetic. So my, my suggestion is to always have layers of be that can be removed. So if you are warm in the warmer climate areas or dur during certain seasons, you’re able to take some layers off or put some layers on.
And I do believe that most of the time and I’m with D on this one, you really don’t want the bedroom to feel like a cave. I have clients all the time. B could probably even attest to this. They always want blackout blinds or blackout and blackout curtains, something they usually adopt from their travel.
They go to a hotel, they’re able to draw the curtains and every, or the drapery and everything is dark in the room. It could be 12. No, it could be one o’clock in the afternoon and they don’t have to know it because it’s dark in that room. I guess if you’re traveling and you don’t wanna go out of the room, you just wanna stay in a hotel room, I guess that works for people.
But for the most part, I don’t think that’s a wise thing to do when you’re home. Unless of course. Work a night shift or you, or you live in Alaska or, or something? Yeah, I think sunlight seven in a certain period, right? Like you really do have to help yourself. That’s different. That’s a whole nother scenario, but for the typical average person, that is not a good idea.
I have the bedroom, just like a cave, just so dark in there that you just can’t see. I thing. So if you feel like you wanna have those days where you wanna sleep in, and maybe you do work long shifts, the drap panels can be blackout, but allow your shade or your blind to allow some light into the room, know that it’s going to be, um, the morning time and not be confused about what time of day it’s.
I think that’s very, very important. Yeah, I think, uh, Alicia and I, we still shade that you can put them on a timer so that let’s say you wake up at seven in the morning, but you need a completely dark at night. Cause unfortunately we do live. I live near a city. I think you’re close to city too Alicia, and it’s very bright out here at night, even the birds confused.
So some people, they need to drown out that light cause the security lights on people’s houses, you know, with New York city. So, you know, a lot of times it is too much light and they can’t get to sleep. So I understand the blackouts for that purpose. I like it dark. I actually wear eye math because I need it extremely dark.
It makes, if mine is heavy, it forces my eyelids closed and puts me into a deep REM sleep and that’s what I need. But my alarm wakes me up in the morning. My shades are open and I’m ready to go because I always close myself to the sunlight that I. So, you know, if you can get those, those shades or drapery one, a timer motorized, then you’re in business because then you won’t have any sleep issues.
Well, you know, barring that everything else is normal. Exactly. But those are, those are some of the luxuries that you could add. I mean, you could even put that as long as you have a hub, you can put the blinds or shapes and drapery on your, you can have Alexa or any of the Google home. You can, you know, do the whole house automated systems that are so popular today.
Control your blinds. Mm-hmm you can, you know, put it on a timer and schedule all of it. And your window shades will open at a certain hour. All over the house for that matter. Not even the bedroom only and clothes, if you like clothes, if you like, you could be out at dinner and you say, you know what, we’re out later than we thought let’s just open the app and let’s shut all of our, our, uh, our shades since we’re not home and turn on the light for that matter.
So these are the things that can happen with modern technology. And I think it’s a very wise thing to, uh, add that to your bedroom if you can. That yeah, yeah, yeah. That investment will, will last many, many decades and yeah, it it’s gonna bring you satisfaction. Absolutely. And that’s what it’s all about.
Mm-hmm . Yeah, and I was just gonna say, cuz a good night’s sleep can, can set you up so good for the next day on it. And it just increases your productivity and, and, and everything else in your life just fits together so much better. Just from one thing, you know, just if your room, if you put a bit of effort into designing your room a bit more, you know, a bit more thought into it, how can I get a better night’s sleep?
And it can just, you know, uh, help in so many other avenues of our life, so to speak, oh, it’s great for your skin. You know, it’s amazing for your skin health for your, they regenerate. Yeah. You wake up, you could look like a newborn sometimes, you know, like did I go back 20 years as I, with. Beautiful. No, listen.
If, if that’s something else that you can offer your clients, you’re, you’re gonna be the busiest interior designers in, in the world. I’m sure. Yeah. absolutely. We can make your skin as, as you know, better than the baby’s bum. Like you you’ll be getting emails left right. And center. Oh yes. Yes. Let me show you the way people can’t believe how old I am.
Let me show you the way it’s sleep. It’s sleep. Oh, dear. No, absolutely. You’ve got a lot of fascinating and really interesting, uh, and practical suggestions. So where, um, the Alicia has been amazing. Where can people find, find you, first of all, in your work, you mentioned your podcast. Is there any other channel or medium, uh, where you would like people to, to find you, if they’ve liked what they’ve, they’ve heard and they would love to work with you?
Uh, where, where can they find you? Okay. So, you know, we would love to hear from your listeners. Um, you can reach us at hello.
O V E R interior I N T E R. I OS that right. Com and so that’s hello. You can email us there. You can just put inquiry the subject line. You could also find us at www do
Morrison, true Morrison
Morrison. Also recently just snippets of our podcast on YouTube. So go ahead and follow us there cause we need to describe it cause we’re new and so that is the interior podcast on YouTube and, uh, that that’s it. If you wanna reach just Alicia, you can reach her at Alicia. A L I C JT do com or me B the interiors do com whoa, girls, ladies, ladies, even
Thank you for your time. Uh, I’ve really enjoyed this, this chat together. Um, yeah, I’m definitely gonna have to, uh, to listen to a few more suggestions and, uh, maybe I can get thinking myself about how to spruce up some of, uh, my own interiors. So yeah, I wish you and your work and your podcast, every success.
Thank you. Thank you so much. Me. Yeah. We really enjoyed being on your show today. Thank you so much. I enjoyed having you both. Thank you so much. Thank you. My guest today were D and Alicia, two practicing interior designers who love discussing their work. Be sure to check out their podcast where they discuss all things, interior design, over a nice cup of English tea.
It is English tea. I’ll leave all of what they’ve said in the show notes so that you can find them and their work. What if you’ve enjoyed today’s episode, please do share it with a family member or friend who you think would get something out of it. And if you haven’t already, please do leave us a review on apple podcast or Spotify, and don’t forget to follow and hit the bell nullification there.
If you haven’t done so already. My name is Nate Ralph, and you’ve been listening to the inquisitive tourist.