Lifestylist® Advisory for Summer Fun

Summer is officially here, and many of us are wondering how to keep the kids (or guests) entertained. When I was much younger, we used to go to the beach on Lake Erie with my Aunt Julie who is an artist. She always had great ideas on how we could do art projects using found objects, and we used to love making animals by gluing river rocks together then adding color and faces using Sharpie markers.

When I started my first company - Memory Merchandising - I wanted to stand out from the crowd so I made all of my own business cards using rubber stamps for an imprint that I then tinted using Prismacolor pencils. I've been told that people still have kept some of those because they thought they were so unique.

Today while I was web surfing I found two great websites full of ideas that can keep all of us busy for the entire year, if not more!

Sharpie Uncapped is a really fun site that has all kinds of ideas on how you can get creative with a Sharpie. I personally love the mugs, and think I may be heading out to Staples today to buy some new colors and play. I also love how they play up the talents of various artists and how they are really embracing the art community. If we had more companies like this the world might become a more colorful place.

Prismacolor has an amazing site as well, and I can't wait to spend more time on it. You can upload your works of art to be showcased on their site, and a feature I really love is the color coordinator. You can use a virtual color wheel and they will tell you which of their products matches that color.

Congratulations to both of these companies for having websites that just aren't about selling but offer great information that anyone can appreciate and use. I have some thank-you cards I need to send out - think I'll be trying some of their ideas and making some handmade ones! Lifestylist Designed greeting cards here I come!

BeauFlor - The Next Generation of Flooring Has Arrived

As a Lifestylist®, one of the things I spend a lot of time on is sourcing and specifying products for the home. Flooring is especially important, and I've seen a movement lately from what we've always expected to see in a home to some really exciting, unexpected products. Your lifestyle should play a huge part in what you want in different rooms in your home - do you have pets, kids, allergies to be concerned about  or do you lead an active lifestyle? All of these should be considerations as to what type flooring you have in your home.

The Home Idea Factory is a perfect example of this. Living and working in a 1940's building has lots of different challenges - add to that all of the animals we rescue and grandbabies - what you end up with is a need for something that is easy maintenance & a lot of style as well to make this Lifestylist® happy. I've been looking for years to find the perfect flooring for my media room which is my favorite room at the factory and where I spend most of my time. It is large so tiling or wood was cost-prohibitive, I knew carpet wouldn't last since the dogs enjoy this room as well. I also wanted something with some sound barriers since the photography studio is below. When I discovered BeauFlor I knew I had my answer.

Believe it or not, this is a resilient vinyl flooring that is available in wider widths which means less or no seams. It also doesn't have the paper backing that many vinyl floors have which can add to mold issues, and it is "lay flat - stay flat". The patterns are absolutely amazing - I have been in homes that have BeauFlor in them and I have seen customers get on their hands and knees to see if the flooring was real tile or wood - actually it looks better in some cases! Plus you get the cost savings of a resilient flooring and the savings on installation - what more could you ask for?

Champion Homes of Texas has been using this flooring in their homes, and the customers love the look and how easy it is to care for. If you get a chance, be sure to take a look at this product in the nearest Champion Homes to you, or contact Syntec Industries to learn more about this amazing product. I can't wait to have it in The Idea Factory to spend less time cleaning and more time enjoying!

DalTile Listens

There are days (actually most of them!) when I love being a Lifestylist®, and this week was a great one. I was able to work with the amazing team at Champion Homes of Texas and finish the XTreme Model Home Challenge, then I was invited to the corporate headquarters for DalTile to view some new products they are working on.

Honestly, I don't know why more companies don't ask for our help - being able to give input to DalTile helps all of us in the long run. They get to learn about what we need and haven't been able to find, and by learning about what DalTile is working on I'm able to be sure that my clients know about these amazing new and current products so they can take advantage of them as well.

DalTile has always done an amazing job of understanding the needs of designers and builders and delivering beautiful products that are exactly what the homeowner is looking for. After spending a few days with their team, I think I know know how they achieve this - they listen. The innovative new products they will be launching that we got to see are obviously the product of really listening to and understanding the lifestyle of today's buyer. With more people wanting the ease of maintenance that tile affords as well as it being so family and pet friendly, tile is going to become even more important in tomorrow's homes. I can't give everything away, but soon you will be seeing tile that is so simple to install even I could do it :) and they are using new technologies to produce glass and mixed materials into mosaics that are worthy of being hung in a museum, but you will be able to easily install them in your own home. It was like they could read my mind - things that I had only dreamed about being able to use in my homes will soon be a reality.

Tile can be very intimidating to a novice homeowner, and with so many beautiful choices it can be very hard to choose what is your favorite. DalTile has helped take some of the guesswork out of this by having an easy to use website full of ideas. They also have design centers around the country that are staffed with some of the most knowledgeable designers I've ever worked with, and they are full of inspirations on how you can use tile to create your own dream home. They were very helpful to me when I was working on the new Design Center for @home Builders that will be opening soon - if you have a chance to stop by you should. They also helped me design the great kitchen backsplash for the new model home that just opened at Frisco Ranch for American Custom Builders.

Now it's my turn to listen. I would love to hear about how you have used tile in your home. Feel free to contact us at: and share your beautiful rooms with us!

Lifestylist® Advisory - It's Free!

We are starting a new blog - Lifestylist® Advisory Services. As Lifestylists® we are out in the trenches every day finding new sources, great foodie destinations and  traveling from coast to coast truly experiencing life and style. On our new blog we will share the best and the worst of customer experiences, and we already have some experiences that might surprise you. The best part is that all of this is at no charge to you - please just let the businesses that you learned about here know where you found out about them.

Have you had some experiences you would like to share with us? Email us at: and we'll share the best ones on the Lifestylist® Advisory.

XTreme Model Home Challenge

I love a challenge, but when I got a call this week from Champion Homes of Texas I may have gotten one that is even more than I can take on.

They are introducing their new XTREME Home Value Series, and they are so excited about it they didn't want to wait for the normal time it takes to put together a home show to introduce it to their buyers - they decided since these are factory built homes and they could get them built in a week, they would have a home show in a week! This means putting together 4 furnished model homes with Xtremely tight budgets in 7 days.

Can Lifestylist Design Inc. get this done? Check back in a week or so and find out how we did!