Decorating & Design

June 27, 2011

Design Blogger Q&A

Today’s blog is a special one because I get to play journalist and catch up with world-famous blogger Chelsea Fuss, author of {frolic!}.

Recommended by Domino magazine, {frolic!} was one of the first blogs I started following. I have always been in love with Chelsea’s clean, pure style and romantic influences. {frolic!} has been noted in many, many publications including The Wall Street Journal Magazine, The London Times, Elle Decor and more for being the go-to destination for all things pretty and perfect. Here is a peek into Chelsea Fuss’ many inspirations and creative ideas.

MP: How did you become so dang stylish? What were your influences growing up?

CF: Ha ha! I don’t think of myself as very stylish. I think I am more of a behind-the-scenes girl and a collector of pretty things. I love to work hard at making photos, flower arrangements and events, but I usually look pretty ragamuffin.

I was always very shy growing up. I read a lot of books and magazines (the original Victoria was my Bible!) and I was a big observer. I liked to study what people wore and how they decorated their houses. I also had a big imagination and yearned to live in a sort of dream world. I wore dresses, had tea parties, read poetry and planted a garden. Poetry readings were much more exciting to me than Friday night football games.

My mom was a big influence. She’s very creative and she created this very beautiful life for us with homemade food, beautiful handmade clothing, rooms decorated with homemade curtains and pretty wallpaper, and always a garden. I had a very idyllic childhood, especially during the time that we lived in the countryside of New Hampshire. My grandmother is originally from England and is a big gardener and artist. I think all of this has really shaped my outlook on life.

MP: Clearly, you believe in the link between fashion and design. How do you see them influencing one another?

CF: All design seems to be influenced by what’s going on in the world and there’s usually a thread connecting every genre. When looking at art history and humanities, we see certain trends and movements in art, music, fashion, and literature. It’s no different today. Even if, like me, you say you are not influenced by trends. You are influenced by your own economic climate and life events, and those are what tie everything together.

I like to see how a particular style can be interpreted through various genres whether it’s fashion, interiors, music, artwork or food. I get bored only looking at one of those!

MP: Your style seems to be rooted in the beauty of reality. How or why do you stay away from overly considered spaces?

CF: It’s exciting to make the everyday beautiful. The world is lovely as is. Old houses are pretty, flowers are breathtaking. They really don’t need much help. Just a little editing and placing things in an interesting context. Plus, I just really don’t respond to anyone or anything that appears to be trying too hard or anything very pretentious. I love effortless spaces, fashion and people who don’t take themselves too seriously. I am always aspiring to effortlessness. It’s so hard to achieve though! It’s harder to create designs that don’t look designed at all but rather like they just happened.

I also like design to feel accessible. When I look at a photo of a room, I’d love to be able to imagine myself there, even if it’s in my little dream world!

MP: What was your favourite colour growing up? What is it/are they now?

CF: I’ve always loved a very pale pink and still do!

MP: You create the most beautiful, effortless-looking flower arrangements. Describe your process. What goes into these creations and which flowers tug at your heartstrings?

CF: Thank you. That’s very nice of you to say. I think flowers are pretty and they don’t really need much help! My process is always a little different. I try to keep my mind open and once I am in the flower market or wandering through a cutting garden, I pick up whatever looks pretty to me and try to put together colour combinations there. I don’t have a lot of self-control when it comes to flowers, so I often buy or cut much more than I need. Once home, I soak the flowers for a few hours after re-cutting their stems. Then, I’ll pick out a container and start playing. Sometimes I get frustrated and start over. Other times, I love it right off the bat.

My favourite flowers are violets, lily of the valley, David Austen roses, snowdrops, lilacs, hyacinths, apple blossoms and peonies.

For more of our favourite design blogs, see our Blog Galleries and Design Sites We Like page.

Photo credits:
1-2, 4-6. {frolic!}
3. Anna Allen clothing line, photography by John Allen