Designing Woman

We tooled over to Orange County yesterday (2.5 hours each way!) to visit the design center and select a few options for our new house.

While I was there I took a photo of our lot. We couldn’t go up there because it’s a construction site and closed off during business hours, but I did get a photo from the street below:


Our house will sit where the black arrow is. I still can’t believe we were so lucky to score such a great spot.


The design center was fun but a little overwhelming. We spent about four hours during this session and will go back two more times. It is unbelievable the things we had to select. Very involved.

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Wiring. TV/cable/internet outlet locations. Can light (or not) locations. Ceiling fan prewires. Door handles. Speakers. Intercom. There are a plethora of sexy high tech options available today that you can operate with your phone. (We didn’t get any of that stuff.)

It’s good because you can get exactly what you want, but any upgrade at all costs extra. When we bought our last [new] house the only thing to select was flooring and countertops. And we bought it so late in the construction process that some construction worker made those choices before we bought the house.

We have yet to decide flooring and other surfaces, but we did choose cabinets. Below is the model of our plan.


We opted for a furniture island (vs. a sheetrock one) like in the above photo. We wanted vanilla kitchen cabinets and a brown island, but you cannot mix cabinets throughout the house and I knew I couldn’t live with that much white, so I opted for brown cabinets and a white island. It will look a little like the photo below:


Below are the things we did select. The square rocks on the right are the backsplash. They have them in the model (gray) and J fell in love with them.


The wood floor and carpet aren’t official, I was just goofing around while the designer wrapped up some paperwork. The carpet shows much lighter in the photo than it is. The wood is really pretty and has a lot of different subtle color shadings going on. We are keeping the background colors cool and neutral. We have enough warm wood furniture and a red sofa to pop some color.

Next is bathroom flooring and shower tiles, sinks and surfaces, mirror frames—more fun ahead!


  1. Looks like you have already made some excellent choices! Fun!

  2. Sounds a bit exhausting but you did a great job. Still have my fingers crossed for you on the existing house:)

  3. Beautiful choices. But, oh my, this would be my worst nightmare. Luckily, I only had to pick flooring and cabinetry and eventually, paint color and lighting.
    Yesterday, I looked at washer/dryers and gave up in ignorance and frustration. Happy designing !

  4. How fun! Love your choices. We only got to do this once a very long time ago, also in CA, and only got to pick the cabinets and carpet.


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