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!!!


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 ; ))

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Glam Beach House Project, Rockaway NY!

With warmer weather finally heading to NY this Glam Beach house design in Rockaway Beach, NY is a good one to talk about. I worked with my girlfriend on this project who is very much a DIYer. The plan was to reuse/ paint some of her existing pieces and then add new items to change the look and feel out of the Tuscan Trend and into the Glam Beach light and airy look she was now going for. 

This project is still in the works since we did it in phases but once it is complete I’ll be sure to post the reveal photos!

Living Room Design

Living Room Design

For the Living Room we went with the Ainsley sectional from Interior Define. Since I sourced from this vendor regularly as a Havenly designer I was familiar with their products. After visiting the showroom with my girlfriend we changed the original sectional style and fabric selection because again when you are able see things in person rather than on line things look different. As mentioned in the past it is really important to me to visually touch and feel products after having spent the past twenty three years designing clothes on the computer. There is something to be said about visually seeing the texture, scale, color and look of a piece in person.

Ainsley Custom Sectional in Linen Pebble Weave with Natural Oak Legs

Ainsley Custom Sectional in Linen Pebble Weave with Natural Oak Legs

The timing for the sectional delivery is 8-12 weeks out which is pretty standard for custom (pick your own fabric) furniture. Given the timing I told the client I would also find out what the price would be on a Duralee custom sectional. I had already planned to visit the showroom to get a custom chair quote, pricing on wallpaper and the fabric I had selected for the project. Once I received the quote for everything I had to let the client know it was not in budget. While I love the option of a custom sectional with thousands of fabrics options after receiving the quote I will reserve that for the higher end luxury client who has more disposable income in their budget.

For the Dining Room my friend painted her chandelier in silver which turned out beautiful. She also painted her furniture in Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Pure White. My girlfriend has painted and sold furniture in the past through her business Double Arrow Design so she is very experienced with the process.

Dining Room Design

Dining Room Design

Once her dining chairs are painted she will recover the seat cushions in a stripe ikat pattern which the color scheme of the room was based off. For the two captain end chairs again I received a quote from Duralee but they will not be in budget either. I was able to source a set of blue chairs with silver nail heads that will work within the budget.

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The legs on the chairs are a dark espresso so they will be painted in silver (as shown) to add a glam element.

Side chair Ikat Fabric and original blue chenille fabric for the custom chair option.

Side chair Ikat Fabric and original blue chenille fabric for the custom chair option.

The price on the gorgeous grasscloth wallpaper which has a touch of shimmer for above the chair rail will work in budget which was awesome news!

Glam Beach House Project updates and more!

We visited Mood Home in NYC for this project also. Think project runway but with home fabrics! Since the fabric I priced from Duralee was on the higher side we wanted to see what other option there were for recovering the kitchen bar stools that would also be painted

Here is the Sunbrella fabric that was ordered for the stools along with the nail heads and cording they have for sale at Mood.

Overall this project was a lot of fun and totally changed the look and feel of the space from outdated Tuscan to updated Beach Glam.

If this is a look you would like in your home be sure to reach out to us HERE .

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Have an Inspired evening everyone!