Sunday, August 08, 2010

Summer Adventure

This is a tale about what I did on my Summer Vacation:

Backstory: When I fell into the career of interior design consulting in the 2001 I didn't really have any goals, other than to relieve Martha Stewart of her title of Design Queen.
Other than that I was just grateful for any work that came along.
Eventually a few years in I developed a working "dream job" list in my head.

They were:
Design a Vacation Home
Design a Trailer/RV
Design a Restarunt
Design a Retail Store
Design all of the above for myself 

Well, somehow, by the Grace of God, 3 out of 5 have come true.
And all for the same wonderful, amazing client.
First there was her house
(a few pictures found here)
Then there was the Lake Condo
(pictures here, and here, and here)

And now there is her Shop

I am officially not in the interior design business anymore, as I now have a full time job at the kids school and lots of other irons in the fire. But I cannot resist when Liz calls. The jobs are always too much fun.
So I was so very honored to get to help with the design,  layout and interior decor of her shop this summer.

Here is how it turned out:

Just Leave it to Liz is the dream-come-true of Liz Bray, my client and friend.

She has been a personal chef as long as I have known her, but she has always had a dream of sharing what she has learned about cooking healthy and yummy food with others.

Her new shop is a mixture of Retail Space, Event Space, Cooking School and Treat Shop.

Located in downtown Benton the building already had a lot of charm, but it was pretty much a blank slate for us to create on.

If you know Liz, if you have been in her house or the condo, then you know that she ADORES the color red.
And Red,Green and Black is her very favorite color combo.

So our inspirations for this project were those colors, and a farmers market.

I am so happy with how it turned it, although I am sure I will do some tweaking and fluffing as time goes on, just for fun.

Here are a few of my favorite elements:

The Stools: Purchased from Worthington Direct, these are old school style science lap stools.

Spoon Lamps: Made from vintage lamp frames and painted wooden spoons, these hang in the windows and add a touch of whimsy fun to the shop!

The Pallets: We might still paint these black to better offset the great photo's by Nancy Pruitt but I do love their rough and natural look.

Dry Goods Drawers: was the original check-out counter at the store that previously occupied the space, it was not quite the right deminsions for Liz's check-out counter, so we re-purposed it. I love the look of these drawers all staggered and pulled out.

Vintage Mail Box Shelf.  This is an actual vintage mail-slot shelf that came out of the North Little Rock Post Office. I have to keep reminding Liz that it is "on loan" from me because we all want it!
I just had no place for it, so to the shop it went. 

Screen Door Chalkboards: We created these chalkboards out of old screen doors. We ( and by we I mean the contractor for me) knocked out the the screen panels and attached a think plywood backing that had been painted with chalkboard paint. I just adore them!

Red Tin Pendants: These are vintage pendants that I found at our local Habitat ReStore. They were a funky old gold tin and I simply painted them red. I love the scalloped edge and the contrast they add.

Red Bistro Sets: Found at, these were a fun find at the exact right moment for the exact right price!

The Window Buntings:  They were too hard to get pictures of with all the glare. Guess that will require an expert photographer, but in this pic you can sort of make out the Dishtowel Buntings that we made (and by we I mean my mother for me.)  To me they reperesent the true heart and soul of Liz's shop -they are fun and functional - just like her approach to cooking!

If you live in Arkansas you have to make a trip to Benton and visit Just Leave it to Liz.
Need a place to host a bridal shower? Want to take a cooking class?
Need an event catered? In town and want some soft-serve and an amazing homemade cookie to go with it?
Then just leave it to Liz - she will take great care of you!

(Oh, and tell her Jerusalem sent you!)


  1. HOw super! I love it! Just my kind of place. I wish I was close I'd be there all the time! Well done both of you!
    Hugs, Lisa

  2. ADORable! Great job Jerusalem! Can't wait to go visit.

  3. how fantastic!! it turned out so lovely. wish i was in little rock so could come visit! your did a wonderful job!

  4. lovely images.. simply beautiful :)

  5. wow... what a fantastic job. i love all of it... every nook and cranny. do you mind sharing where you got the string lights, or what kind they are. i live in ontario canada and have been scouring our local stores for something like this and can't seem to find them. any advice would be appreciated. thanks, kerri


ok, really. tell me the truth... do these comments make me look fat?

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