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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Spring 2019 One Room Challenge- Week 5: We have Artwork!!

Week 5 of the One Room Challenge has now come to a close! With just one week left it was time to get a move on all the last minute details like hanging the artwork. That said this weeks post is all about just that. Before I show you all things art here are the previous week's posts so you can get caught up:

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4

The vibe of the room is very much inspirational and we hope our Airbnb guests feel a sense of calm, positivity and overall good vibes during their stay!

That said first up is the inhale exhale vinyl wall art that I purchased online. I’m in love with how this turned out and it’s actually super easy to install. Click HERE for the product details.


After wiping the wall for any dust or debris I taped the art to the wall where I wanted it to go as shown below. I used a level to make sure it was not crooked.

Next half of the backing paper was peeled back and cut away. The left side of the image below has been peeled back. I then smoothed the left side to the wall which has a tacky face that sticks to the wall. In the second image, you can see how it looked when I was peeling off the backing.


The below image has both sides of the backing peeled away and the entire vinyl had been applied to the wall and then smoothed across. The next step is to take a credit card and apply pressure over the black areas of the vinyl so it adheres to the wall and any bubbles are smoothed out.


After the vinyl has been smoothed out and checked for any bubbles I then peeled away the top sticky layer pulling it slowly back and away at an angle.


Shown below is the end result which I love!


On the wall on the opposite side of the room, I originally planned to get one piece of art for that area but after visiting several HomeGoods and not finding the perfect piece I was left with the option of ordering one online for $300 or using smaller pieces to create a gallery wall. Since I had a few pieces already I decided the Gallery wall would make the most impact and it was actually the least expensive to create. I visited HomeGoods and HomeSense over the course of two weeks to get all my options. In the end below are the ones I went with.


The pieces I already had were “YOU GOT THIS”, the black chalkboard and THE Wifi PASSWORD IS. The rest of the pieces were from three different HomeGoods and I spent about $100 for those.

To get started I taped craft paper to the wall in the area where the art would be going as shown below. I wasn’t sure how far to the right I wanted to go and how the pieces would look once I laid them out so I extended the paper across the majority of the wall.

Then I started playing around with the pieces to get the best visual look. I noticed that I had enough of a mix of both gold and black pieces so I balanced those out by alternating the pieces with black frames. I knew that I wanted the New York piece at the top and the “She believed she could so she did” art in the center so I started with those two and worked my way out from there on each side. In the end, this was the layout I went with.

The next thing I did was trace out each piece of art on craft paper which I labeled so I could place each one on the wall to see how it looked.


Below is how the pieces looked after I taped them to the wall. The center of the gallery wall art is about 60” off the floor which is a good starting point when you are hanging art at eye level.

Then I started with the first piece of art as you can see below and used a level to check it was even.

To hang the art I used the OOK wall hooks which I love and are so easy to use and install art with.

As you can see I just worked my way out from where I started. I tried to evenly measure and center the pieces off each other.

I also wanted the bottom edge of each piece to be lined up across the bottom so I used the level to double check this as I went along.

I originally thought I may want to add a piece above the floor lamp area but decided against it.


I loved the saying on this piece from HomeGoods which is what I wrote on the chalkboard since sometimes I can have a bit of a potty mouth myself.


Above is the final wall gallery and I’m so happy with how it turned out!

That’s it for this weeks update of the One Room Challenge. As mentioned previously don’t forget to check out the other amazingly talented Featured Designers and guest participants here, as they transform their spaces.

At Home With Ashley | Casey Keasler | Dorsey Designs | The Farmhouse Project | Home Made by Carmona

 House of Funk | House of Jade Interiors | House Seven Design | House That Lars Built | Inspired by Charm

 Jana Bek | Jessica Brigham | Kelly Golightly | Murphy Deesign | The Pink Pagoda | Sarah Gunn

 Sherry Hart Designs | Sugar & Cloth | Veronica Solomon | Vintage Revivals | Media BH&G | TM by ORC

Hopefully this post will give you a bit of inspiration when adding art into your next project. DON’T BE ORDINARY or afraid to step outside your comfort zone! If you are not sure where to start or need help with your next design project reach out to us HERE! We believe everyone deserves a space that makes you feel inspired and reenergized after a long day of work!

Please comment and share this blog post with anyone you think will enjoy it! #sharingiscaring

As always please continue to follow the journey through our Instagram Stories and Facebook updates where we will continue to share behind the scene videos and findings.

Have an Inspired weekend everyone!