Tuesday, July 28, 2009


Hey there!

Thank you for leaving such encouraging comments on yesterdays Design Star post. You really know how to make a girl feel good. :-)

I had pretty much decided that I was too busy to try out again this year, but now I'm having second thoughts! Mr. LC is concerned about the physical demands placed on the contestants, and the emotional beating they seem to take, year in and year out. He's worried that because it's not "real life", and because they force contestants to call out the "weakest link", it may not be the most positive place in the world for me to be. I don't know, I'll have to give it some more thought. Just out of curiousity, would you want to be a part of the show? Do you think your design style would properly translate throughout the season when you're limited to working against a strict clock with team members that will likely have a much different vision than you? I'd love to hear your opinion on the matter.

Speaking of Mr. LC, he has been working very hard over the past couple of weeks to create LetteredCottageArt.com. Today, I'm happy to announce that it is finally finished!

To celebrate our Grand Opening, we're offering a 20% discount on all orders placed between now and Sunday, August 2nd. Before checking out, simply type
life is good
in the coupon code box to receive your discount.

Kevin will be uploading one new gallery of Color, Black & White and Sepia-toned images each month. We look forward to offering affordable, eye-catching art to those seeking unique and inspired photography for their home.

Kevin has also started doing custom photo shoots (when he's not on tour), for those seeking more personalized photography. Email me for more details about this service at LaylaPalmer@aol.com.

Before I sign off, we'd both like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for taking time out of your busy day to check in with us. We appreciate your kindness and positivity more than you know!



Found a peanut said...

Layla, you silly heart. You are a design star. Do you need HGTV to tell you that?

Anonymous said...

Layla, go for it. Let them ask what they want, and have a clever and positive answer in your mental rolodex! I'm addicted to your blog and know that your positive nature would be very refreshing. We're rooting for you!

Georgia said...

I think I'm with Mr. LC on his thoughts about Design Star. I think you have loads of talent and vision but more than anything you seem to good for the bull. I have faith that you will find your path in a way more consistent to who you seem to be.

Missy Langley said...

I live in Knoxville, where a lot of the cable networks are headquarted (HGTV, Fine Living, etc.) a lot of people around here freelance for these networks and I also know a few people with production companies. They all say that so much of what you see on the shows are bs. One of my friends worked on the first few seasons of Trading Spaces and said there were times when they couldn't get out of town fast enough because they knew the whole room was just going to fall apart because it just isn't realistic to do a job in the time allowed when you are trying to film on top of everything else, but it's fun for us to watch.

I think if you are trying to be a serious designer, going on a show like that probably isn't going to do it for you. Now, if you are trying to be an HGTV star, well that's another story. When you look at the people who are REALLY good, Candice, they were very successful designers BEFORE they became the stars that they are today. And, as you mentioned, Candice doesn't deal with those crazy time constraints.

Lettered Cottage said...

Found a peanut-

Thanks for the sweet message!
I don't need them to tell me- doing the show would just be a heck of a launching pad for my design business.

Missy Langely-

I've never dreamed of being a TV star. I simply want to inspire the world, one room at a time. The show would just be a way to spread the word a little quicker! :-)


Rachel said...

Hmmm... I think I agree with your husband, Georgia, and Missy - I don't think I'd sign up. All the drama, time constraints, and anxiety aren't worth it.

Consider this: most of the time, you are forced to work with somebody else - compromising your vision - and you are restricted by time and available resources. I don't think that the projects would be a true showcase of the work you can do. I know there are better ways of getting yourself and your business out there, without all of that.
I think you're doing a great job already!! You're inspiring to me!

G said...

The whole time I was watching the Kitchen challenge, I kept thinking about your fearlessness when it comes to chopping up some wood or beadboard and making it interesting. You have an invaluable eye for the details and at the same time you can do some heavy lifting of power tools. The women on this season seem to shy away from doing their fair share of manual labor.... I think you would rock the challenges, but I also think that your a little bit too good for them ;) Can't wait to get my photos!

redpolkadot said...

as far as them pointing out the weekest link, I think it will get to you if you allow it to. Think of it instead of as an attack but rather a call to action. Remember on that show there is only one winner which it would be great to win right. However mean while it gets you as a designer nationally recognized and perhaps the kick off you need to be the bigger deal even if you don't win. So I say go for it if you don't struggle in life it doesn't create room for growth.

Annelies Dease said...

I was thinking today that I am grateful you did not make the show. I think ( sadly) that so much of "reality" tv is demeaning and serves to destroy rather than build. THEN...very selfishly, I was thinking if you DID do the show, would you have as much time for US ( those who don't need a title or a tv show to validate how creative you are). I sense greater things for you and your equally talented husband....but these shows seem to produce "here today, gone tomorrow" designers. You are more talented than that!!! Continue to do what you do best..... XXX Annie

TRICIA @boutellefamilyzoo said...

Hi Layla.
I absolutely think that you would be fantastic on the show (as I have told ya' before) ;).
I also think that Mr. LC has a very valid point, as do so many of these other smart folks.
I guess it all comes down to your goals and what you are willing to do to get there. I think TV is about drama, especially reality tv. It's terribly entertaining, but I assume that many of the real life designers that have been on the show in the past did take a bit of a hit when they went home and had to go back to real life design. Those fiascos (even if they weren't all their fault) stick out in people's minds.
No matter what you choose to do, I know you will be great at it. You're passionate about what you do, and you have Mr. LC to support and encourage you through all of it.
Besides, on a totally selfish note, think of how your being gone would devastate the rest of us. I mean, really. ;)
Reach for the stars, Layla. Just remember to look for YOUR best path.

P.S. I forgot. I would never in a kajillion years want to do the show. The very idea of being on TV gives me hives. Tee hee.

Justine Frood said...

I am absolutely LOVING the photos! I will be purchasing some shortly... as soon as I decide where would make a good home for a few! Thank you for sharing your fabulous home with us =)

Nancy said...

From what I've seen of your home, I like your style. I haven't yet found any of the contestants this year who wow me. Blech. So, yea...I think you should have tried out again. As long as a person goes into it with the mindset that it's not real life, then I think it would be ok. I say give it a go next year.


Tammy of Yarborough House said...


I think your style is impeccable. You really have your hand on the pulse of the people and are amazing. That being said, I think it would be a bad thing for you to go on there. They seem to want people that are going to do weird stuff just to wow the audience or intrigue the judges but really would the normal person want those weird things? I think not.
I think you are doing great and I'd hate to think their negative feedback and beating up of contestants would somehow hurt your desire and drive to design.

You are a designer and you will continue to grow along with your business because you dear are very talented and don't need that show to justify that.

Heck they should just give you a show without all the crap of the show :)

Liz said...

I second everything said here and your husband's thoughts. :)

I recently found your blog (live in Nashville), and really enjoy looking at your ideas and your upbeat attitude. That should say a lot because I don't decorate my house in the "cottage style" or with anything lettered! :)

Aura said...

I did Interior Design in college, and then went to hair school and became a stylist, so I have considered some sort of reality show in either of these. But honestly, reality tv doesn't suit my personality, and I think that as easy going as I am, I'd probably be the girl that ended up fighting someone because I can't stand to take crap from anybody. And I feel like there's a lotttt of behind the scenes crap. But you seem completely patient and sweet, so I say go for it ;) PS..."life is good" is one of our favorite sayings, we have a big bumper sticker on our back window that says it.

Aura said...

Oh also, I've always wanted to start a website to sell some of my photos. Have you ever thought about having guest artists on your site? You could sell off a commission basis and take part of the profits.

Little Fingerprints said...


I couldn't do it and I wouldn't want to. In all reality you might not have that much time leftover for your hubby man, family or friends, to just relax and enjoy life. You would have a crazy busy design star schedule. Plus, you are already making a name for yourself... You are already a star.
It is so funny, everytime I google something about re-vamping, or re-doing furniture or anything crafty for my house..... The Lettered Cottage always pops up first! You have what it takes and you are an amazing designer and you are really making your own unique mark and that is awesome!

Glenda said...

Since you asked if *we* would want to do it, my reply is that no, I wouldn't want to. Having a design (or other) show might be fun, but going through a competition reality show to get there . . . for me, it wouldn't be worth it. I don't believe in throwing people under the bus to achieve what I want, and, unfortunately, shows like Design Star put you in the position of having to do just that. I don't want to compromise my beliefs and who I am, and if I'm not willing to do that, then odds are I wouldn't be top dog on a competition reality show . . . I'm not willing to do "whatever it takes" to win that type show, so, no, it wouldn't be a good option *for me*.

I think design style is likely compromised a good deal in team challenges, but if you can get through those challenges and on to some of the individual challenges, then, yes, I do think design style should translate fairly well, even working against a strict clock.

Good luck in coming to your decision :).

Flower Patch Farmgirl said...

DO IT! Do not be motivated by fear - step out on that limb and leap from it! Your style would be such a breath of fresh air. Heck, I'd even spring for cable if you were on the show!

Linda S. Socha said...

I would follow your intuition on this one Layla...You have an abundance of it!

Anna See said...


I say go for it! You are amazing!

I would hope there would be a way to stay out of the drama. Unless, of course, HGTV encourages drama and sort of sets it up (like The Real World)

Leah S. said...

Your husband loves you and wants whats best for you. I'd listen to him.

The Whispering Creek House said...

I think it would be extremely hard.. its hard to be creative under stress and takes the joy out of decorating..I wish that the show would showcase the joy, fun and art of decorating rather than human tendences of judgement and at times critical spirits.You are so sweet and talented and are a natural like David Braumsted hope I spelled that right lol.But I truly think you could do it if you can remain true to what you Enjoy about decorating! Good luck to you! We all think your great! I would love to be your teammate! lol

Funky Junk Interiors said...

Personally, time restrictions really mess me up. I need the time to think and then implement.

But that isn't saying that you ought to follow suit. If you have a true desire to go for it, just do it! If you have the design sence to make quick snap decisions and have them work for you, this could be your calling!

Most realize a shot at fame can be a once in a lifetime thing. You already have your own brand of fame now, however it's totally your call whether you want to join the superstar rat race and go for the gold.

Sounds like it's worth a shot to me. However, only you know your own personal endurance. If health issues are at play, as I have right now, I'd be somewhat concerned. But what's worst case scenario? They send you home, right?

Why not do your own personal trial run? Find another designer friend and go tackle a needy friend's home and do it up right as a gift of friendship with similar deadlines intact. You'll soon see if you're built to knock heads with another designer at such a breakneck pace.

ALVN of WhisperWood Cottage and Junkologie said...

You'll never know unless you try! If you feel drawn to it, then go for it. If not, focus on what makes you feel happy and fulfilled. You are a natural star and will do well no matter what path you take! Loving the new website!


Kimm at Reinvented said...

I'm not sure Design Star is ready for someone as seriously GOOD as you, day in and day out! You would rock their world, and maybe show up the judges too! I do understand your hesitation, just follow your heart. Then go kick some butt! :)

Kris said...

Layla - do you think, in 5 years, you will be sitting there thinking "what if" or will you be right where you are supposed to be and knew you gave it your all that one time and were okay with how it all turned out. I personally love your style and I just took another look at those kitchens and both were just plain ugly. Even I could decorate something better then that. You have style, grace, the face and from the video I watched when you painted the old bench - you are a hoot. That translates in to good TV. I'm just saying........

Anne said...

I really think you are above and beyond "Design Star." I'm kind of with Mr. LC on this one. There must be other avenues through which you can really share your talent with a broader audience. Do the winners of "Design Star" really "make it" after the dust settles? I don't know ... I don't have cable TV.

There are many designers who have reached book deals based solely on their blogs and their large following. Posie Gets Cozy comes to mind.

Donna said...

Layla, you are very talented and I agree with Mr. LC also. I was wondering how you could be away from him for so long while doing the show! ;)
Also, the way they dramatize everything is really getting old. You are really getting your name out there in the blog world and I think you will go far on your own with the talent you have. Hang in there!
If you were to do the show I know you would rock it! It seems like you know what to expect out of the show so you are more prepared for it.
I think you have many great things to come! Thanks for inspiring us all!

Rona's Home Page said...

Looking forward to your new venture.

Anonymous said...

Hi Layla, I'm with Mr. LC on this one. I think you have an amazing talent to share with the world but maybe have faith that there's another / better way to keep building your business. Look at all the followers you already have on your blog and your consultation business seems to be doing well! I fear that the networks "chew up and spit out" the people on those reality shows because they are cheap to make and pull in the ratings. You seem like such a good soul and it would be hard to watch you go through that. Also, you'd miss Mr. LC, right? :)

Jennifer said...

You know, being a contestant is not my thing. but if it was, I would approach it knowing full well the emotional impact that it could have. I'm sure that they prey upon the exhaustion, the feisty relationships, etc... it makes for good tv, right? I would play it like a game. Keep everything in check. It's a totally fine line as I'm sure it would be easy to be drawn into all of the drama. Gotta keep your wits about you, be confident, play smart, use your brain and play the game. I know, easier said than done, but keeping a lot of that stuff in mind should help you along! Go audition, will ya! You're a star!

sarita said...

i can't bear to watch those "reality shows" - they are all so mean to each other - and i would hate if someone was mean to you...so i vote - stay off the reality shows! i think you and your blog are inspiration enough for the world - one room at a time!!! :^) --- you asked if our style would translate - well - what style?!! HA!!! thank you for taking time to write your blog.

Gwen said...

That is a tough choice to make. The contestants are hard on each other and the judges are brutally honest. I think I can take the brutally honest, but the cat fighting??? I can do without.

It does look like a lot of stress. On the other hand, you are used to tackling big projects with just you and Mr. LC. I think that some of those people freak because they have never actually done the stuff on their own. They usually just wave their designer wand and call a contractor.

Whatever you decide, you have lots of fans already and are a design star.

ness lockyer said...

Layla, Is there anything you cant do??? You both are just amazing people and wish you all the success with your site.
Ness xx

Blushing hostess said...

I could not take participation - too much of a tender heart. great to see a new site - well done!

My name is PJ. said...

I think it depends on what your motivation is for wanting to be on the show. If you want a shot at being on television, uprooting your LC life and removing yourself from helping us little people, or if you think having participated would give you more credibility, then you have to try, right? BUT, if you want to enjoy your LC life with Mr. LC, and grow your business with the little people your own way, I think you'd be crazy. It's not real life; the conditions and feedback are brutal. The bitchy factor runs rampant. When you participate each week with your own entry on line for us to see - that's better results, created in a better working environment and left in a blog for us all to see. Mr. LC already travels at times. Do you really want to add to the 'separation' factor in your young marriage? Think hard, Layla. Signed, a mother of grown children. :)

Katherine said...

It would be very cool to see you on Design Star someday. But I always feel bad for the contestants. They are all very good designers, but the show really brings out people's "weaknesses" due to unrealistic time constraints and other limitations. It seems more emotionally challenging than anything else.

And you are inspiring people through your blog!

Victoria & Jeremy said...

Amen to the you already are a design star. I actually feel you have too much class to do reality tv. Kind of a Sandree Lee Semi Homemade except "LAYLA DESIGN DIVA". You seem to have the inner strength to endure it and most defintely the talent and skill. It's does not seem like the perfect venue for you to me.
Regardless of what you decide it is very apparrent you already have quite a following look at what has happened in your short blog life what will the same of time in this scenario bring bigger things that you can ever imagine.

jabee said...

Frankly, I think you're better than that.

Anonymous said...

I'm with Mr. LC and Missy Langley, and I read your reply, but I would ask, "at what price"? In other words, I'd be very concerned that the compromises one must make in order to achieve the launching pad for your business by participating in such a reality TV program could be far higher than you should have to "pay" to achieve the same result through hard work, networking, etc. Yes, it might take longer, but would the trade-offs in taking the reality TV short-cut be worth that? I'm not so sure. I don't think the manufactured tension that such a program deliberately creates is a very good thing for building a strong reputation - good TV, yes, but good business? Not so much. Be proud you made it as far in the process as you did the last time, but also be true to yourself and your artistic integrity, not to the gods of these manufactured reality TV dramas.

Anonymous said...

In the end the only one who can make that call is you. What I feel I have to say to you is that you reach a lot of people here at the LC. You have inspired me, a big ole scardy cat, to transform a room I was terrified of and kept the door shut so no one could see it. Your thoughts, the pictures, the videos all combine to teach the ignorant such as myself. When I get some cash saved up I have a kitchen dilemma with your name all over it.it maybe in the spring, but it is coming.

mrso' said...

love the photos! i ordered one the other day and can't wait to get it! keep up the good work!

vanessa said...

I don't know if I could do that show. Like you said, I don't like how they call out their team mates. Do I have better ideas than they do, in my opinion, yes. But don't all designers think that of themselves? I do know that I would pee in my pants when Candice started in on me. I use to get defensive in college when we had a jury judge our interior design projects.

Katie C said...

Dear Layla,

You have an outstanding eye for design. I think your style is far better than a reality show. :) I found your blog and I am eager to send you my requests for 2 room designs. You know, having a business that you enjoy working at is so important. I believe that you can continue to do well and grow without having to be on Design Star.

Take Care,

tina said...

My sons and husband have told me I should audition but I have wondered the same things that you are asking. I have people ask me for decorating advice all the time and I even recently had a woman tell me she was going to email me photos of her house for ideas!! that was a real compliment.

I don't think i could go on design star because I could not work in a team, I know that about myself. Plus my carpentry skills are probably not good enough. For major things I tend to come up with the vision and then someone carries it out!! The time constraints are also unrealistic. I think i would end up homesick!!

I couldn't help but think though the other night, give me the $20,000 and forget about the designers!! I know I could have done a better job.

It seems like when there are less people, the challenges seem to go more smoothly.

My other concern would be I know what I like, would I be able to understand what someone else wanted? for instance, the moroccan thing the other night, I think i would have said oh no, you don't want that in a kitchen!!

You are so talented though, you would probably shine on there!!


misty said...

I say...YOU GO FOR IT, GIRL! Yes, of course there would be the stresses of it all-that's part of it! But your sweet heart, talent, and go-for-it attitude would shine through and you would get through whatever it is. You're tough enough! I would love to watch you....and the entire world would fall in love with you, just like us bloggers that you inspire weekly have! You have a great day girlie! misty:)

Anonymous said...

Your kitchen design was so better looking than the others.

When I have big decisions to make I sit down, and with much thought,
write a list of pros and cons.
It sounds simple, but it works.
I would suggest both you and Mr. LC do this. Then review your lists together and really discuss.
This can be very revealing.

Don't let fear hold you back.

On a side note, your photography is beautiful and stirring.


Ashley said...

Layla, I definitely think you have the skills and talent to hold your own. It probably is a lot of BS but just stay strong and remember the reason you are there. I think you would totally rock. A gorgeous girl that can design that awesome?!? No question you should be there.

declansmom said...

I have to agree with your hubby regarding Design Star.
They have gotten so tough, and the comments almost make me cry just watching them!
In real life, you have more time to design a plan, more time to complete it and YOU are in charge of workers completing YOUR design which would have been pre-approved by the owners.
You are a star in your own right.
Both you and Mr. LC are on one page as far as likes and dislikes and you make a great team. You don't need the approval of anyone, if what you do makes you happy.

Paula Barin said...

Oh my gosh, Layla. I just checked out your new art site. Fantastic. Great photography. I love the ones I already purchased from you. Can't wait to see more.
As for Design Star? I agree with Found a Peanut... you're already a star!!

C said...

Just found your blog, and I truly admire your work!! You are too good for HGTV! Keep it up girl, and you will truly be rewarded. :)

Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality said...

Congrats on the new show!

And to answer your question on Design Star, no way would I put myself on that show. Not that I would ever get chosen, I wouldn't. But, I totally think YOU could be on there. You've got the talent & creativity. The only thing about that show is the tough time-frame they make them work under. It's almost impossible to pull off a good room with the tight time restraint. And working as teams has got to be hard, since many have such different tastes.

It's got to be hard on anyone with feelings to be on a show like that. I just wouldn't put myself through it. I think you'll do fine even if you never make it on there. There are other methods to get it done & you're doing a pretty darn good job right here on your blog.

Bay said...

Yes, I understand where Mr. LC is coming from but I think that show needs you probably more than you need the show. Your spirit, your goofyness, your heart, and mostly your designs are needed. I think who you are could make that show even better. And how long does it take? A couple months? What's a couple of months of crazyness if it drives you to be more creative and to teach the world all about Layla! I agree with Kevin and he knows you better than any of us do but really. Life is short, grab it by the reins and tell it what you want to do with it. You could inspire SO many people while jumping off your business. I say you can handle it and GO FOR IT!