Interior designing a children's book! by Joseph Bradshaw

Lauren Bradshaw Magnolias Magnificent Map Author

I'm so excited that the second book in my Walnut Animal Society series is out! It's called Magnolia's Magnificent Map starring Magnolia the Bunny. It's the follow-up to my first book, called Henry's Bright Idea

As a little backstory, my husband and I renovated and designed a 1925 Craftsman in downtown Orlando in 2009. We had our first son shortly after, when I decided to take time off work to be with him. I created a sewing pattern for a fox stuffed animal, called him Henry the Fox (after my son Henry), and started Walnut Animal Society. Our home and the whole Walnut crew were featured in Country Living, where my publisher, Cameron Books found me and asked to write a children's book about my characters.  

Writing the text for the first book, Henry's Bright Idea, was pretty surreal. I had thought about these characters for so long in the process of creating them, so to put their stories on paper was incredibly fun. But I had no idea how fun the next part would be—basically interior designing their world! Our lovely illustrator Wednesday Kirwan sent back some initial sketches for the book. I reviewed those and thought—wow, I get to build their treehouse, and all the furniture and palette within it. I sent over a super long list of inspiration links to the publisher; but most importantly I sent them over one of my very favorite homes I'd ever seen: Jens Risom's Block Island Retreat. It was the perfect inspiration for the Walnut treehouse. 

 Image by Floto + Warner via Dwell

Image by Floto + Warner via Dwell

Magnolias Magnificent Map Lauren Bradshaw
Magnolias Magnificent Map by Lauren Bradshaw Interiors Book

In addition to sending along the treehouse idea, I sent a ton of links to amazing mid century furniture from 1st Dibs, and Wednesday was so receptive to all of it. She incorporated some of my favorite pieces and painted the Walnut world so beautifully. We were so careful with the palette to feel vintage yet fresh, and I'm so proud of what we created.

I hope you'll add it to your children's book collection!  

Over on MyDomaine by Joseph Bradshaw

Best Kitchen Cabinet Paint Colors Lauren Bradshaw Design MyDomaine

Talking about kitchen cabinet paint colors over on MyDomaine! I used Farrow and Ball's Pavilion Gray in this kitchen to keep it warm against the white walls and tile. The white oak plank flooring was barely stained—we used a simple wax finish to keep the wood looking really natural. Another color I mention in the article is Farrow and Ball's Studio Green. I LOVE dark paint colors and can't wait to use this one. We're talking about doing a kitchen island with it! And speaking of dark paint, I've got a few more projects in the works that I'm super excited about. We're getting ready to paint the outside of a house Greenblack by Sherwin Williams and it's going to be an amazing transformation. 

Even though there are ten billion paint colors out there, I love to start by looking at Farrow and Ball's color card. Here's a little helpful hint: you can request a free color card from them and it's such a good starting point! Their colors are so rich and complex. Now I'm going to go restrain myself from painting the kitchen cabinets in our rental ;) 

Our apartment in the LA Times by Joseph Bradshaw

LA Times.JPG

I realized I never shared this article that came out back in May in the LA Times about our apartment (!!!!). We moved to LA on somewhat of a whim back in 2013, and spent nearly 4 years there. It was such a wonderful, creative, difficult, and crazy time. Amy Preiser wrote this article that so perfectly encapsulated what our family is about—I was so moved when I read it the first time. So special!

New Client // Co-work Studio in Nashville by Lauren Bradshaw

A few months ago I began working with a super talented client who is creating a co-work space here in Nashville. The idea is to have an office for people involved in all types of media production, so this space will have recording studios as well as offices. There will also be a lounge for communal working, and a kitchen.

The client and I got together and discussed the vibe he wanted for the space, and I presented some options for direction. He was really into a Wes Anderson/Ace Hotel coziness, but with a good dose of Scandinavian added in there. He had already planned on plywood for flooring and desks, which was a perfect way to incorporate the more minimal Scandinavian look. He's also into taxidermy and animal imagery (think Natural History Museum), which I thought was a perfect nod to the South (hello, taxidermy at every estate sale I've been to in Nashville). 

We began with a palette I chose based on some of the inspiration images we both liked. The main colors will be black/white/plywood, and then natural colors like green/blush/yellow.

Lauren Bradshaw Design // Co-Work Studio Inspiration

We began designing the kitchen and bathrooms first, with an overall direction for the main lounge area. Here are a few of the images we loved for inspiration. I loved these particular images for the black and white combinations, with added warmth from the wood, and art on the walls. We wanted to lean very Scandinavian but still with that touch of Wes Anderson/Ace Hotel. 

Lauren Bradshaw Design // Co-Work Studio Inspiration

Here are some Before photos of the kitchen, lounge area, and two (very green) bathrooms.  

 Kitchen // Lounge
 Bathrooms

And finally, here are some shots of the progress that's been made on the buildout. Even just this small snippet shows signs of life!  

Lauren Bradshaw Design // Co-Work Studio Progress

Inspiration photos, top (from left to right): DesignLoveFest, NeM Architects, Malplaquet House

Inspiration photos, bottom (from left to right): Stylizimo, Colombe Design, Läderfabriken