Stripping, er I mean striping.

Stripes are all the rage and really have never gone out of style.  Case in point: Marcel Marceau & Miley Cyrus.  Have them go vertically and you’ll appear thinner — horizontally and you’ll look wider (um, who wants that?!)… the same holds true in your home.

A vertical strip makes the ceiling appear higher, whilst a horizontal stripe makes the room look more spacious.  In this case, BOTH are good things.

BUT, if you don’t actually know the tricks and technique to make these stripes look PERFECT, you’re screwed… and, it neither matter if the room looks taller or more spacious it’ll just look like dreck (yiddish for shit).  Well, you were screwed until now… now, that I’m showing you exactly how to do it.

Hence forth a video tutorial by moi, for you:  How to paint stripes.

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Rocking chairs are the new…

You heard it here first:  rocking chairs are the new poofs… Poofs have had their day in the sun for the last few years, and I, for one, am OVER them!  Sure, I’ve designed many a room in which I’ve placed a poof or two, but no mas.  But now, I feel like they’re overexposed.

So what’s next?  Mark my words (or this blog!) that in about a year, you’ll start seeing rocking chairs pop up all over the place!  In restaurants, at parks, in living rooms of modern homes, etc.

I think rockers are ripe for a comeback for several reasons:

  1. They’re very soothing, and subconsciously hit us on the infant-in-the-basinet level.
  2. They remind us of a simpler time.  As a society, we’re doing everything we can to simplify our craziness, and rocking away some time can help us feel as if we’re unplugging (even if our laptop is going along for the ride).
  3. They’re classic… like a cute LBD.  Classic is… well, classic!
  4. Oh, and they come in as many styles as you can imagine… clean-lined, old lady, modern, retro, beachy, odd-ball… you name it.
  5. Because I said so ;-)

Know what else I’ve been saying is about to make a comeback?  The beret!

What do YOU think is about to make a comeback?  Tweet me your predictions @TracyMetro

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Gary Vaynerchuk is the man, but you already knew that!

Gary Vaynerchuk (wine guru, all around internet mogul, writer of “Crush It”) and I agree that “Passion is Everything”

“Live your passion. What does that mean, anyway?  It means that when you get up for work every morning, every single morning, you are pumped up because you get to talk about or work with or do the thing that interests you the most in the world. You don’t live for vacations because you don’t need a break from what you’re doing — working, playing, and relaxing are one and the same. You don’t even pay attention to how many hours you’re working because to you, it’s not really work. You’re making money, but you’d do whatever it is you’re doing for free.”

Do what you love.  Love what you do.

SO, since that’s the scoop today, I wanted to share some images of things I LOVE that I found doing what I LOVE… thrifting at the Long Beach flea market a few weeks ago.What do you love?  Tweet me @TracyMetro No, seriously, tweet me.

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Building a Brand is all the BUZZ pt 2 of 2

So how did I get here?

I’m the kinda gal that never wanted to be beholden to a man.  It’s not that I’m a man hater (to the contrary, I loves me some mens!!), but I never wanted to be the gal who had to wait for her husband to get home to turn on the grill, so I learned how to fire it up myself.  In fact, in my house, I’m the grill master.

Eons ago, I had an idea to build a piece of art which needed to be made using power tools.  My husband started to build the art piece for me until I demanded that he STOP!  I wanted to be the one to do it. He showed me how to use the tool, and then I built the piece myself… years later, I even became a spokesperson for Skil power tools, teaching women how to power it up with power tools!

Doing things myself initially grew out of ego, and not wanting to be a weak, unskilled woman who was beholden to a man.  But then it morphed.

When we bought our first home, we didn’t have enough money leftover to hire a fancy schmancy general contractor for our remodel, so I became the GC and grunt worker.  I had champagne taste and a beer budget, so I did what I could myself, and only brought in the high-paid pros when I could go no further.  Once the pros where on the jobsite, I shadowed them to learn what I could, so I could replicate it next time.

Shadowing true professionals has single-handedly been the most influential aspect to building my brand.

If you’re struggling with either finding your brand, or choosing between several areas (i.e., design, parties, DIY, food, etc), might I suggest looking beneath the surface, like I did.  There is likely some commonality in your interests; connecting the data points might be the task.  If you need help with that, this book is an oldie and true a goodie:  What Color Is Your Parachute? Funny enough, I’m currently midway through the workbook in an effort to further refine my brand, which is always evolving.

Having this “Dame on a dime” brand moniker still allows me to be exactly who I am, but it has created a way for others to classify me.  People feel better when they can put you in a box.  Allow them to do so, as long as you know the totality of your brand.  Whatever you do, do NOT (I repeat DO NOT) allow your brand to be portrayed as something it is not.  It won’t last the marathon.  Sure, it might be great for a little sprint, but once you’ve tuckered out, you’ll be back to trying to figure out what your brand is.

So, what IS your brand?  Tweet me your definition @TracyMetro


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Building a Brand is all the BUZZ pt 1 of 2

Am I poor?  Uh, no.  Well, I must be rich then, right?  Hardly.  I’m somewhere in between… by American standards, that is.   If I don’t struggle financially and don’t need to turn a McDonald’s packet of ketchup into a bowl of tomato soup, then how did I become a “life on a dime” expert?  I must just be cheap then.  Not exactly.  I simply don’t like the concept of feeling beholden to anyone; henceforth, how I became Dame of the dime.

Allow me to give you a bit of history on me.  For years my agents and managers have mandated that I build a hyper-specific brand for myself (oh, by the way, I design homes, throw parties, upcycle junk, cook, etc on TV).  If I gave you a dime for every time I was told to choose ONE area of focus… well, you know how that sentence ends.

My team would tell me that my multitude of skills confuses people.  What I heard was: God forbid one person should be good at doing more than one thing!  Truthfully, I think the reason I was requested to choose just one area was to make me “an easier sale” for them.  See, if I was super specific, I could be put into a tiny little box, and would only be considered for shows that were looking to fill that tiny little box.  Less work for them.

Since I refused to choose just ONE area of focus, there was always the unspoken threat that I’d never get hired for another TV show, again.  My retort?  “Nobody puts Baby (AKA Tracy) in a corner!”  Why can’t my brand be more than just ONE thing… because I truly AM a multi-potentialite!  In a world full of experts, I’m proud to call myself a generalist.  Unfortunately, I’ve been alone in this camp of thinking, much of the time; though, my NEW team actually embraces my multitude of skills, and sees them as MORE ways to sell me!  Ah, two sides of the same coin.

But then I began to look beneath the surface of my myriad of interests and skills, and noticed that indeed I DO have a brand. I AM an expert… an expert at doing things on a budget… designing homes on a shoestring, throwing parties with pennies, cooking dinner on a dime, etc.

Uncovering that hidden, little gem has allowed me to filter all of my brand choices through the sieve of “creative curator with oodles of style and a strong financial sensibility.” It might be a bit of a mouthful (and truly is still a work in progress), but it allows me to make brand choices based on that concept vs my emotions.

Check back next week for the other half of my BUILDING A BRAND BlOG!

What’s your brand?  How did you figure it out?  Tweet me @TracyMetro and share your words of wisdom!


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