Going for Bold

August 10, 2016

This post was originally published in skirt! magazine’s online blog. Thanks to skirt! for the opportunity and partnership with the Charleston Blog Society!

Any boldness in me comes from my momma. She didn’t let anything hold her back. She was feisty, kind, caring and determined. If she wanted something from a shopkeeper on King Street, she would pull up her car, honk her horn until someone came out to check on her, and she would politely hand them her credit card and tell them what she wanted. As I go through life without her physical presence, I find myself needing someone to help me be all the bold that I can be. A partner in crime. A bold companion. Someone who will help me stretch myself, my creativity, my individuality.

I found that in my husband when he convinced me to take on the renovation project of our 100 year old family home, built in 1915 and in unimaginably bad shape. He helped me see the once in a lifetime opportunity to restore the home my great grandparents had built. When the wall that divided the home into a duplex came down and it was opened back up to a single family home, I knew I wanted to have a big, bold entrance as if to say, “Hello, World; it’s nice to be open again.”  But I wasn’t quite sure how to get there.

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File Aug 02, 3 27 21 PM

I found inspiration in my neighbor’s home that had been renovated, in my friend’s home who has a flare for the bold, and even in the Charleston Symphony Designer Showhouse. Big, bold wallpaper. As it often happened during our renovation process, serendipity intervened. I wandered into the Sherwin Williams paint store and there before me was the largest selection of wallpaper books I had ever seen, and a very special lady (and I believe one of Sherwin Williams greatest assets), Miss Lorretta, holding court over thousands of wallpaper selections.  As I told her my story, the normal “call in advance to get an appointment” protocol was put to the wayside and she was all in with me, helping me create the bold entrance I couldn’t quite see.  I vaguely described what I was looking for: big print camellia wallpaper, tone on tone. She took a minute (or less) and grabbed a book and showed me some options. Finally, in the very back of that book, one of a hundred books at her command, was the wallpaper. Exactly what I was looking for!  It took a friend, a partner in crime, a bold companion to help me find it.  What transpired after that was a special friendship, so much better, bigger, and bolder than just wallpaper.




Don’t ever underestimate how someone else can help you find your bold.

GILL9348Interior post renovation photography by Gillian Ellis.


Miss LFile Aug 03, 5 03 42 PMorretta Bryan is located at the Sherwin Williams, 464 Savannah Highway. She accepts appointments and is an amazingly talented color expert with an eye and a memory to find you the best paint color or wallpaper for your next project!

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  • Reply Erin, Attention to Darling August 10, 2016 at 8:14 pm

    This is gorgeous, you did a phenomenal job, that wallpaper is beautiful and matches exactly the vision you sound like you were going for from the start!!!

    Erin, Attention to Darling

    • Reply English August 11, 2016 at 3:45 pm

      Thanks so much! I am so happy with it!!

  • Reply Kelley August 11, 2016 at 2:24 am

    That wallpaper is beautiful! What a great choice to perfectly fit the space!

    • Reply English August 11, 2016 at 3:45 pm

      Thanks Kelley! My Dad was a big camellia grower and it was a great way to honor him as well.

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