December 31, 2014

Annual Review - 2014

It's become a tradition of mine to take some time at the end of a year to think about all the year has brought.  I find it's therapeutic in a way, and it helps me focus on everything that has been accomplished, rather than stressing about everything that still needs to be done (which is my normal everyday way of operating).

For starters, enzy design had the opportunity to be involved in some great projects in the past year.  Here's a small sample:

We took part in Fashion Remix and designed this beautiful dress out of LIVE flowers!

I was a Regional Winner for Design for a Difference.  This means I got to spend a few days on the Operation Breakthrough Makeover in Kansas City.  I gotta say - this trip was more meaningful than I ever expected.

Operation Breakthrough

Not only did I get to experience the shock on the faces of the staff, moms, and kids who get to use this new space, but I also developed an amazing bond with some amazing women.  How we became so close in such a short amount of time is impossible to explain, but I love these women dearly and can't wait to see them again in January!

Hollie, me, Dani, & Lucy with Mark Brunetz

As regional winner, I had the opportunity to work with the Salt Lake Bicycle Collective, a local charity that I have a ton of respect for.  This work is still in progress, however you can already see a big impact just in the addition of the bright adventurous color we added to the shop wall.  While not a large scale project at this time, I hope to continue our relationship for further projects down the road.

On a more personal note... 2014 was significant in many ways.

We bought a house and sold a house and are currently remodeling a house!
Here's our big ongoing project:



How it looks today.  

One month to go before we move in!

Last but not least... For over a year (following a miscarriage), I had been experiencing severe debilitating lower back pain, and nobody could determine the cause.  I tried massage, structural integration, acupuncture, an MRI, cortizone shot, and several types of doctors (general medicine, OBGYN, midwife, back specialist, physical therapist) and was getting nowhere.  Finally in December of 2013 my OBGYN at the time threw out the word "endometriosis" as a possible diagnosis via process-of-elimination.  Not being familiar with the term, I looked it up and was shocked that it described all my symptoms nearly perfectly.  Frustrated that this doctor couldn't determine something so obvious sooner, and frustrated that he had spent months downplaying my symptoms and telling me I simply had "bad cramps", and frustrated by the infertility and lost time caused by this disease (not to mention the unbearable pain that was robbing me of weeks of my life!), I sought out another doctor.  This doctor was able to diagnose me instantly.  He performed surgery a few weeks later and I felt instant relief.  I'm not telling this story to share TMI, but I'm telling it because I've since learned that endo occurs in 1 out of 10 women, yet few people are aware of it and many who have it don't like to talk about it.  More awareness means better/quicker diagnosis, better research, and possibly someday a cure.

The happy ending to this story is that 2 months after the surgery we got pregnant!  Little "Mini Mike" is due in March of 2015.  Which means 2015 will be a new year full of new experiences.

I'm looking forward to my 2015.  I hope you are too!

Happy New Year!

September 1, 2014

Taking "Labor" Day to a Whole New Level

We officially started demo today!  And thanks to some wonderful friends (+ my father-in-law) we made HUGE progress!

Let's start again with the dreadful "Before" photo:

Here's what happened today.  We only stopped because we ran out of dumpster space!

And some history revealed in layers of wallpaper:

Thanks to Steven, Danielle, Steve, Bri, Lee, Dave, and Jill!

August 25, 2014

Planning My Own Kitchen Remodel

So, we're selling our beautiful home and moving into a "new" place, which is actually a 1950's home that is a bit of a dump:

The reason I'm not completely depressed about this is because it's allowing us, for the first time, to take on a large remodel of our own.  I've been helping others with their remodels for years, and I've done plenty of smaller projects in the various homes I've owned, but never something of this scale.

I recently gave tips on Utah Style & Design for finding good deals on renovation materials (see the post here), and we've used every one of these to our advantage.

We've also been deep in the planning stages to make sure everything is done correctly.  We've got floor plans approved by my structural engineer, so we're nearly ready to start demolition!

I'll post pics along the way, but here's a glimpse of our current plan:

Stay tuned for more!  (And in the meantime, if you know of someone who wants to live in a charming old home in the Marmalade neighborhood, send them my way!)

August 1, 2014

Design for a Difference Regional Winner!

I'm thrilled to announce that I'm a regional winner in the Design For A Difference design contest!  This means we'll receive $2,000 to work with Foremost Interiors for a makeover of our chosen charity, Bicycle Collective.  I'm so excited to be able to support this great cause!

The Bicycle Collective is a local non-profit, whose mission is to "promote cycling as an effective and sustainable form of transportation and as a cornerstone of a cleaner, healthier, and safer society. The Collective provides refurbished bicycles and educational programs to the community, focusing on children and lower income households."  The concept is a no-brainer:  There are people who can really benefit from having a bike and being able to maintain it themselves, and the Bicycle Collective makes it happen, and has a whole lot of fun while doing so.  

Aside from supporting the Bicycle Collective, as a regional winner I also get to travel to Kansas City, where all regional winners will spend time with Mark Brunetz (of HGTV fame) and other International Design Guild participants, working on the Grand Prize winner's chosen charity makeover.  

July 22, 2014

Sneak Peek: Living Room

Just a couple quick photos of a room in progress.  We still need art and finishing touches, but the furniture and rug already make the room look fantastic!  

3 typically traditional elements used in a modern way:
  1. Tufted velvet sofa in a bold color 
  2. Extra-large nailhead trim on the chairs
  3. Large scale pattern and contrast in the black & white damask rug 

June 16, 2014


Just a quick post, but I wanted to share.  I was recently lucky enough to snag a painting by a friend of mine, one of my favorite people.  She paints for fun, and I love her work.  It just so happens that she had this piece, an "extra", and I got to claim it.  It almost seems as if it were created with my master bath in mind.

I love a home full of art, but more importantly, I love having art that means something to me.  Whether it's the content, or the story behind how I got it, or the person who created it... it's special.  We don't have a lot of expensive art in our home, but we have pieces we love.  And they're priceless to us.

I'm thrilled to now have this piece in our collection!  So Cora, if you read this, thank you!

May 29, 2014

Mentioned in Utah Style & Design Magazine!

I've been meaning to share this for a while.  And don't think my lack of sharing means I'm any less excited about this.  Enzy design is featured (again - see first feature here and here) in the Spring issue of Utah Style & Design!  Where enzy was the sole designer involved in the first project, this one is something I'm equally proud of because of the collaboration that was involved, and the end results.  Collaborating with other designers can be fun and refreshing, and a welcome change from handling every detail on a project by yourself.

(click on image to enlarge)

Interior Designer Cody Beal brought me in as a Kitchen & Bath Design expert to design & supply the cabinetry (using Hallmark Custom Cabinets).  Cody firmly believes in the importance of a team.  He knows he'll look better if he relies on his team of experts to help pull the project together.  So Cody came to me with his grand scheme plans for the kitchen, bathroom, and master bedroom cabinetry, and once we selected finishes, he gave me free reign to tweak the layout and design the cabinetry details.  This was smart for a few reasons:

  1. It freed up his time so he was able to focus on fine-tuning all the other design details throughout the house.
  2. Because Cody trusted me, it allowed me to fully use my expertise to provide the most functional, ergonomic, and aesthetically pleasing cabinetry for the clients. 
  3. By working directly with the clients, I was better able to understand their needs.  We discussed everything from comfortable reaching heights to how many pairs of shoes they had.  This much information would have been nearly impossible without direct contact with the clients.
Check out the whole issue while you still can!

And see more photos of this project on the enzy design portfolio.

May 2, 2014

Stunning White Kitchen Remodel - Before & After

Last week I wrote about a recent kitchen remodel over on the Utah Style blog.  Today I wanted to present some before & after photos for comparison.

The "before" photos of a remodeling project are what makes remodeling so unique compared to new construction.  They indicate the challenges involved in the job, as well as the dramatic difference good design can make, both in aesthetic and (just as important) function.

Let me give a little background on this project.  The client was looking to update their oak kitchen so she called enzy design.  During the course of our initial consultation I pointed out some of the inefficiencies of the kitchen layout, and we discussed potential changes.  We explored these changes throughout the design phase - I presented a concept that combined the island and dining table, creating space for a casual sitting area in the kitchen.  Fortunately the client was open to new ideas, and we went in this direction.  Since photos speak louder than words, I'll stop writing and just post some photos:











April 21, 2014

White & Walnut Bathroom Remodel

I had the opportunity to help a client turn a basic hall bathroom into her own personal retreat.  This just shows that you don't need a large space to create something special.   

One key element that brought this design together is the tub.  The Lacey tub from Hydro Systems is now available with integral seamless front & sides, custom made to order.  This allowed us to have a simple clean look without the need for a partition wall at the end of the tub.

My client has wonderful tastes - she just needed someone to pull it all together, and to ensure that she would get the look she wanted with the function she needed.


One important part of creating a personal space for a client is leaving room for them to express themselves, through accessories and artwork (in this case, this includes my client's own paintings!)

Photography by Jessi at hiya papaya.

By the way, this client is a realtor.  She obviously has great taste (AND a fun yet professional personality), so if you need a realtor recommendation, I'd be happy to provide anyone with her contact info!