Book Club: The Design Cookbook

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Welcome to Pregnancy & Newborn‘s Book Club! This month’s book is The […]

TheDesignCookbook3Welcome to Pregnancy & Newborn‘s Book Club! This month’s book is The Design Cookbook: Recipes for a Stylish Home by designer and television personality Kelly Edwards. Whether you’re in need of inspiration for the nursery or help with the living room reno, the handbook will help satisfy your home design hunger. With a list of ingredients and step-by-step instructions to achieve mouthwatering style in every corner of the house, it’s safe to say the tasteful resource has all the elements of a recipe for aesthetic success. Read our chat with Edwards below.
Pregnancy & Newborn: Tell us, what made you decide to go with a recipe format? How is decorating one’s home like cooking?
Kelly Edwards:
  The concept for the book was actually my dad’s idea. I told him I wanted to write a design book and he said, “Why don’t you make one that looks like a cookbook?” I thought, ” That’s ingenious!” Truth is, people love to read cookbooks even if they can’t cook. It’s such a great approach to design. If you give someone a photo, a recipe and a list of ingredients it makes it so much easier to complete a room! I wanted to show people that with a recipe for a room, they could be their own designer.
P&N: You have a variety of design experience, including serving as co-host on HGTV’s popular program Design on a Dime. How has the pace of writing a book compared to hosting a television show?
KE:  It’s different, but similar. In television, when something needs to happen, it needs to happen now, but with a book, slow and steady wins the race—except at the time that your deadline nears. Then you panic and try to make it all work much like television. I actually describe writing a book like pregnancy and having a baby. You think about it and dream about it, cultivate and grow it, can’t wait to get near the end, and then once it’s done you forget the pain and look forward to doing it all over again. It’s really an interesting experience. The funny thing is that my manager and my book agent had a baby in the same month I delivered the book. I like to say we all gave birth at the same time!
P&N: When designing baby’s nursery, most of us are overwhelmed, if not paralyzed, when it comes to getting started. What the first step to creating a space both mom and baby are sure to love?
KE: First and foremost, have fun with it!  It’s a chance to play with color and pattern that you may not be able to in the rest of your home. If that doesn’t suit you then my personal favorite is to forgo the typical “baby furniture” for modern and sustainable pieces that the kids can grow with. I love the look of a rustic white nursery packed with lots of texture. Rich woods, soft fabrics and natural pieces can look just as amazing. These days it not so much about color as it is texture. A natural fiber rug, neutral organic fabrics made from eco-friendly dyes and great lighting can be soothing and less stressful for mom and baby.
P&N: What are you favorite tools/items/tips for creating baby-friendly spaces throughout the home in areas other than the nursery?
KE:  When there’s a baby involved in design of your home you pretty much have to make every place baby friendly. The great thing though is that you don’t have to sacrifice style. I typically use no-VOC paint throughout the home and always try to be conscience of the types of glues and sealants we are using. Some can be quite toxic. When it comes to picking out furniture pieces, I love the look of modern high chairs in the dining room as an updated version of the typical high chair and I always try to keep my furniture pieces in every room soft with classic fabric. This makes the furniture look more high end with less impact should your little one fall into it.
P&N: What’s your favorite DIY project that costs $20 or less?
KE:  From the book, I have two. I love creating unique art pieces. We took an old frame and cut a piece of wood for the center and painted it with chalkboard paint.  Then we took a picture of a pair of sunglasses and projected the photo onto the chalkboard and traced it with chalk. It now graces our dining room and it’s the back of the book. This is a great project for any kids room too. The second is Vicki Eastland’s telephone booth closet in her son’s room. It’s so cool how she turned an ordinary closet into a telephone booth.  Ingenious!
Kelly_EdwardsAuthor stats
Name: Kelly Edwards
Age: 36
Job title: Television Host and Designer
City of residence: Santa Monica, California
Children’s names and ages: None yet.
Her five faves
Celebrity: This is a hard one. It’s like picking your favorite child.
Indulgence: Chocolate and more chocolate!
Workout: Soul Cycle, Hiking, Running, and Yoga
Beauty product: Palmers Cocoa Butter
Weeknight dinner: Fish and veggies or sushi.

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