INTERIOR DESIGN • WANTAGH, NY
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Design professional who is transitioning from fashion to a career in Interior Design.

So that's the opening sentence and reality of my world! I have been a Children's Wear Designer, in NYC, for the past 23 years. I went to the Fashion Institute of Technology and received a BFA in Fashion Design. It has been rewarding and considering I have worked 4 days a week much of my career, and make a good living, I shouldn't complain. BUT personally it feels like Groundhog Day! I should warn you now I will proof read this but English/ Spelling (thank goodness for spell check) and grammar have never been one of my strong points. 

Going back to my childhood, my mother for the first 12 years of my life was a stay at home super creative mom. She wallpapered, painted, sewed and could make whatever she wanted. My father had an aluminum siding and roofing business. Both my parents came from large families. My mom was the oldest of six children, while my dad was third youngest out of eight. Most of my uncles were in construction from small jobs, to full house remodels and rental properties. As a child I was up on the roof and always around some sort of remodel/ construction job site. If my families houses were being improved my uncles did the work themselves. I loved seeing the mess turn into beautiful spaces.

In High School, I was in the Fashion Design program and we had an annual fashion show, where I made several garments from scratch. I didn't know that Interior Design existed as a career option back then so my creative outlet was fashion. I took classes at F.I.T. on Saturdays and then during the summer for High School students. When I graduated (a year early), I ONLY applied to F.I.T. so THANK GOODNESS I was accepted!! I was married and had a baby from the age of 16 so I can't imagine what my life would have been like if I hadn't been accepted. Luckily "it all worked out" and I graduated F.I.T. in 1996. I was only 5 years into my career when I realized  I wasn't going to want to do this the rest of my life. I owed a house by then and loved decorating and remodeling. I also pretty much only watched HGTV which is when I realized, I wanted to be an Interior Designer when I grow up!!

I attended night classes in Interior Design and in 2004 I received my degree. Around the same time we took on a huge remodeling project of our home. We added an entire second floor and extended the house out 10 feet. With the help of my step father and brother-in-law, I designed the entire remodel, which was given to the architect to draw up for the permits. My uncle was the contractor that did the remodel so I had hands on experience though out the entire process. Every morning at 7am we went over the plan for the day. The house went from a 1975 sq ft ranch to a 3800 sq ft 2 story home (including the basement). With my degree out of the way and the distractions of the house, I faux finished, applied venetian plaster, painted and designed my house. I LOVED every minute of it. Life happened, my son attended college and a career change was just not an option. So I continued on as the not so glamorous "Fashion Designer".

Fast forward to today.... Finally after dabbling here and there over the years in Interior Design projects, I am in a position to make a career change! I am super excited for what the future will bring. I hope you will follow me in my journey as I transition from Fashion Designer to Interior Designer : ))) I hope to aspire everyone to follow their dreams because I truly believe that if you put your mind to something and work hard ANYTHING is possible!!!

xoxo

Nicole de la Cruz

(my alter ego since my husband spells it Dela Cruz but I told him de la Cruz is more glamorous lol a la Oscar de la Renta ; ))

INSPIRED DESIGN TALK

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

Hello again everyone!! It is now Week 4 of the ONE ROOM CHALLENGE and we are so close to completion. Last week I shared with you the update for the Dining Room to Sitting Room makeover. If you missed that blog or any of the previous ones you can read about them here Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3.

This week I will be sharing more updates of where we are at. So I had a little bit of any issue with the Kelly Wearstler, Small Strada sconces from Visual Comfort.

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

After my electrician installed the two sconces I noticed a blemish in the gold gilding rim on one of the sconces.

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

As you can see from this image there is a noticeable spot at the base of the sconce.

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

I contacted my rep and told him about the issue. Since the sconce was already installed he said that my electrician caused the mark when installing. Note to self always double check the lighting as soon as it arrives and definitely prior to the electrician installing. This may seem like commonsense but I am one of those glass half full people lol. Luckily my rep is awesome and had a replacement sconce sent out. This time I did check the sconce before I called my electrician to come back.

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

As you can see from this image it’s a good thing I did that! The new sconce also has a blemish and what looks like a finger print so clearly it was not my electrician that cause the original sconce blemish. Again I reached out to my rep who is sending a new replacement. As he said “third times a charm” so lets hope he is right!

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

Here is an image of the sconces installed in the room. The one to the left with the wallpaper swatch I am dreaming about is the one with the blemish.

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

There is also a slight gap at the rim on the sconce to the right. When the wallpaper is installed I will have the installer extend the paper to cover that up.

Kravet Lucite Table

Kravet Lucite Table

I don’t believe I showed an image of the lucite table I purchased from Kravet. I am fortunate to live fifteen minutes from the Bethpage, NY headquarters where it is possible to purchase items from this location. It is usually hit or miss that I find what I’m looking for but this was a winner! The lucite table is the perfect piece that ties back to lucite drapery rods. I was also told not to use glass cleaner on this lucite table. To clean the surface you should instead use hot soapy water with a soft cloth. The ideal cloth is nonabrasive, absorbent, and lint free. To eliminate any chance of scratching the lucite you should use only disposable cloths.

Hobby Lobby $14.99 Fuschia Velvet Pillow

Hobby Lobby $14.99 Fuschia Velvet Pillow

Another find this week was this Pink Fuchsia Velvet pillow from, believe it or not, Hobby Lobby. I had done a google search because as we all know “we are only as smart as how quickly we can google”. To my surprise I found this gem which I had been searching for the past few months. I was trying to find the perfect fuchsia velvet fabric or pillow to work back to the pink velvet ottomans from TOV. When I came across these for $14.99 on sale I figured I’d order them and just return them if they didn’t match. Buying fabric or the other pillows I found from Little Design Co would have cost way more. Since I am on a budget and still have to find that bar cabinet I hoped these would work. To my surprise they matched perfectly!! Score!!!!

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

Another slight change to the design is the pink neon sign. I had origianally planned to purchase the “It was all a Dream” saying from Olivia Gal but it is still sold out. After searching online I came across this one from AOOS. Since “good vibes only” is a saying I frequently use this change was actually perfect and the sign should arrive by the ORC deadline. Fingers crossed my friends!!

HomeGoods App

HomeGoods App

Another discovery I made this week after googling the best days to shop Homegoods is that they have an app! Did you know that?? So how it works is you download the above app.

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

You then put your zip code, town and/or state in to set your store locations. Since multiple locations can be set and I know the Connecticut stores are larger I have mine set for NY and a few CT locations. Also because I am psycho and will drive that far if I find the perfect bar cabinet.

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

Next you can select if you want to see store posts and/ or HG Tastemaker post. You can also set the department you would like to see product from. This allows you to see what has been posted throughout the day along with the price.

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

You can also click on the location directly to see images of the posted products as shown below.

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

I have actually messaged several people on the app who posted that I’m looking for a bar cabinet so fingers crossed someone spots one. I have also been calling my local store and to my surprise they will actually check for you if they have a bar cabinet on the floor. Sadly they will not text you a picture, I tried!

So here is the plan for the bar cabinet. I don’t want to rush and over pay so I’m going to obsessively search high and dry for one over the next week or so. I will also take a ride out east which in Long Island, NY terms means I will drive to Riverhead, NY (an hour away) to the “Outlets” where there is a West Elm, Restoration Hardware and Pottery Barn outlet to name a few. There is also a HomeGoods and brand new HomeSence. For those of you unfamiliar with HomeSence it is another sister store in the TJ Maxx family which is now coming to the states from Canada. We now have two on Long Island.

ORC Week 4 - Dining Room to Sitting Room Willow House makeover // IQ Design

On a side note, Yes! I am fully aware of the fact that I have an obsessive personality. Again because I am redoing several rooms in my style for my website to attract my ideal client I have to be smart with the budget. The struggle is definitely real since I do not have the same budget as my future clients lol.

So that’s where we are at. We are nearing the home stretch people!! Please check back next Thursday for more updates of the ORC Sitting Room makeover. Don’t forget to also follow my Instagram Stories and daily Facebook Live videos to see the behind the scenes videos.

You can follow the other amazingly talented Featured Designers and guest participants here, as they transform their spaces as well.

xoxo

Nicole

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3

@oneroomchallenge | @betterhomesandgardens |@homelovenetwork