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Cristi Alyse, Diva Designer & Decorator

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July 2015
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Don't Fear Change...Embrace It!


Many things have happened in my life over the course of the last year and as a result, I took some time away from The Diva Design Diaries to reflect and renew. THANK YOU to everyone who continued to visit and share the site during this period. It is MUCH APPRECIATED!! </p>

During this time, I resigned from my job of 9 years to step out on faith and take my career in a new direction. Still an Engineer, just working in a completely new industry. I also moved from my beloved home to a new state, downsized my living space, and began the task of rebuilding my life in a new area. Whew!!! A lot of change in a short span of time. <span style="font-size: large;">☺

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Change is one thing that I have always been comfortable with. Whether its small changes like deciding to ditch my relaxer and go natural or a big change like putting myself back into the job market during the Great Recession, I have always viewed change as a necessary evolution and not a cause for panic. During my Freshman Year at Tuskegee University, our Freshman Week Theme was "Don't fear change, embrace it!" I was inspired by that message then and have continued to carry it as my mantra ever since.</p> <p>
During this interval of change, I have learned many things about myself, grown as a person, and now feel comfortable sharing this expansion with you. With this in mind, great changes are coming to The Diva Design Diaries. In addition to operating on a new platform and having a new look, the offerings of the site will now include themed sections such as: Career & Entrepreneurship, Inspirational Motivation, Lifestyle & Travel, and as always DIY & Interior Design. Additionally, a new shopping site, Cristi Alyse Designs, will be launching where you can shop both my products and curated products from other talented designers. Stay Tuned!!!</p> <p>Time is filled with swift transitions…Change is inevitable and always exciting! 

Until Next Time…

Ready, Set, Change!!!

Posted by cristialyse on July 08, 2015 at 11:25AM | Permalink | 0 Comments


DIY: Turn Junk into Lamps, Tables, Mirrors, and More via the “Today Show”


"Brian Kelsey, a licensed contractor, shows Today's Hoda Kotb and Guest Co-Host Carson Daly how to turn old junk into useful household items." "Do-It-Yourself: Turning Trash into Treasure"
Segment on July 23, 2013.

Posted by cristialyse on August 19, 2014 at 8:15PM | Permalink | 0 Comments


Find Trendy Outdoor Furniture Items for Less via the “Today Show”



"There is still plenty of time to host a big bash this summer, so why not do it for less? Sabrina Soto of HGTV shows how you can score some of the season's hottest items for budget prices." "A Backyard Bargain" Segment on July 19, 2013.

Posted by cristialyse on July 21, 2014 at 8:19PM | Permalink | 0 Comments


Thank You for 2 Wonderful Years!!!

Thank you, thank you, thank you for reading, following, and sharing The Diva Design Diaries for the last 2 years!! I've thoroughly enjoyed sharing my favorite DIY Projects, Designer Profiles, Holiday Décor Ideas, Diva Life Design Links, Decorating Tips, Interior Inspirations, Home and Décor Show Alerts, Design Guides, etc. Thank you for sharing in my journey to find new Décor and Interior Design Trends that are as easy to implement in your home and lifestyle as they are on your budget. Thank you for viewing and commenting on the Videos and Blog Posts and sharing them with your friends. </p>

To recap what we've accomplished over the last 2 years, check out this "Best of" list of past posts:

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As we embark on this next year, I want to hear from you. What would you like to see The Diva Design Diaries offer? Contact us and share your ideas. We're working on new things for the site and want to include you in the process.

Once again, thank you for SUPPORTING The Diva Design Diaries. I'm beyond GRATEFUL!

Until next time…

<p>Thank You! Thank You! Thank You!</span>
Posted by cristialyse on March 31, 2014 at 6:57PM | Permalink | 0 Comments


A Diva's Year: Best of 2013 Part II

</p> <p>Part II includes the last seven of the 13 features that round out our "best of" list.  From Holiday Centerpieces, Designer Profiles, and Dear Diva Q&A to Design Guides, Entertaining with Style, and Interior Inspirations, we hope these articles inspire your next Home Decor Purchase, DIY, and Home Improvement Project.

Part 2 of our Spring Forward Series details how to make a fabulous, yet multi-use centerpiece for Easter and Spring.  Centerpieces really bring a table to life, particularly if you do not plan to completely dress it with placemats, napkins, place settings, etc.  Holiday centerpieces are extra fun, especially if they can be easily altered to work throughout the season.  Here’s how I created a lovely centerpiece for the dining room.  Continue reading here…

<span style="font-size: medium;">Designer, Author, Talk Show Host, Expert…Nate Berkus wears many hats and wears them well. I fell in love with Nate back in college when I saw him on “The Oprah Winfrey Show”. Never before had I witnessed interior design be so accessible yet chic for any size space, at any budget. His attention to detail as he transformed his client’s space left me in awe because of its beauty, function, and true reflection of the client’s needs. Nate’s design tips made me feel like my small, dark dorm room could be as fabulous as I could imagine it. Plus, he was GORGEOUS!!! ;-)  <a href="http://www.divadesigndiaries.com/Nate-Berkus-Collection-Target-30769439" target="_blank">Continue reading here…

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Dear Diva:  What Everyday Items Can I Use to Clean My House?
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I’ve received several questions asking me what everyday items I use to clean my house.  With all the expenses and news articles regarding the latest breakthrough cleaning products, a lot of us are looking for alternative products to clean our homes, while saving money at the same time.  I’ve previously shared with you how I clean my electric kettle, below is a few tips I have for cleaning other items in my home with everyday items.  Continue reading here…</p> <p></p> <p>

New Host Alert:  Soleil Moon Frye to Host "Home Made Simple" on OWN
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Mention Punky Brewster to any child of the 80’s and a fun, mischievous, exciting wave of nostalgia twinkles in their eyes and sweeps across their faces into the biggest smile.  Well, Punky’s all grown up and joining Season 3 of Home Made Simple on the OWN Network as its new host.  Continue reading here...

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Design Guide:  Turquoise Home Decor
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Blue is my favorite color, always has been. Over the years, my love of Blue has expanded to include every shade of Blue, fromcerulean-to-teal-to-cobalt-to-navy. One of my favorite shades of Blue is Turquoise. This light blue with a tinge of green color reminds me of the cool waters of a tropical ocean, serene and peaceful. Lovely on its own or with complimentary shades, turquoise is a very versatile and beautiful color to decorate your home with, whether it’s in your bathroom, kitchen, or den. Personally, I have it all over my house in an arrangement of lamps, art work, candles, pillows, throws, serve-ware, etc. Below are just a few delightful and fabulous items I’ve found in turquoise that will surely had a little dazzle dazzle to your home.  Continue reading here...</p> <p>


Interior Inspiration:  Easy Tweaks to Update Your Home
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Every so often, mostly as the seasons change, I like to make small changes around my home.  Some of the simplest, most inexpensive ways to boost my mood, is to update things around my house.  Whether it's changing out the pillows on my sofa from Navy Blue and Peacock prints and to my Missoni for Target Pillows I lovingly dubbed"Missoni Madness" or swapping out my placemats and center piece on my breakfast table, little changes around the home can increase your sense of accomplishment and break up some of the routine of life that we all fall in too from time to time.  Continue reading here...</p> <p></p>

Entertaining With Style:  Threshold Dinnerware & Serveware
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From the time I was a little girl, I have such great memories of my mother hosting meetings with her sorority sisters or community leaders at our home. The grace, elegance, and pride she took in not only preparing the food for her meetings, but also in presenting them to her guest, really had a major impact on me and inspired me to do the same.  Continue reading here…</p> <p>
Until Next Time…
</p> <p>Ready, Set, Journey On!!!
Posted by cristialyse on January 03, 2014 at 9:09PM | Permalink | 0 Comments


A Diva's Year: Best of 2013 Part I


As we look forward to a new year at The Diva Design Diaries, let's take time and reflect on how far we've come…To that end, we've compiled a "best of" compilation of Designer Profiles, Interior Inspirations, Design & Shopping Guides, Dear Diva, Design Show Alerts, and Entertaining and DIY Ideas to highlight the path travelled and look forward to the journey ahead!</p> <p>
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Need a pick me up from life’s humbugs or the drab weather that’s caught somewhere between Spring’s rain and Summer’s sweltering heat? Then head right over to your nearest Home Goods and find a little happiness in a store! That’s just how I spent a recent weekend, with my sister, and my mother (a Home Goods newbie). The three of us oohed and ahhed over the lamps, furniture, mirrors, bath goods, kitchen finds, glass vases, etc. One hour and two over – flowing baskets later we emerged with goodies to outfit our dens, kitchens, and entire homes. P.S. Thank God for the bottom rack of those baskets, they definitely came in handy ;-)  Continue reading here...</p>
Sophisticated, Aspirational, Glamorous, Legendary, Sexy, Entertaining… Sex and the City!! The ground-breaking, colossally chic, cultural phenomenon that introduced us all to Carrie, Miranda, Charlotte, Samantha, and Manolo Blahnik, celebrated its 15th Anniversary on June 6th. June 6, 1998 also introduced us to the 5thmain character of the dynamic series, New York City! From Charlotte’s Upper East Side Apartment and Carrie’s Brownstone in Manhattan to Miranda’s Townhouse in Brooklyn and Samantha’s Sexy Apartment in the Meat Packing District, SATC introduced us to love, life, and real estate in the Big Apple.  Continue reading here...

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Quirky, Eclectic, Whimsical, Pop, and Colorful are just a few words that can be used to describe Jonathan Adler. As a longtime fan of his design aesthetic, products, and décor books, Jonathan Adler is Creative, Energetic – Happiness on display. From his fantastic ceramic pottery and namesake line of home décor products, to authoring several décor books and his memorable time on Reality TV, Jonathan Adler is a major force is the design world.  Continue reading here...</p>


How to Create a Fabulous Door Wreath Spring - Summer Edition
 

Nothing makes me happier than creating a new wreath for my front door. It’s such an easy and inexpensive way to refresh your home and boost your curb appeal. Having previously shared with you my Fall/Autumn Wreath, below is how I created my Spring/Summer Wreath. Made with easy to find materials that won’t break your décor budget, this wreath will make your front door stand out from your neighbors, create a welcoming display for your guest, and hopefully, relax your nerves as you create something fabulous for your home.  Continue reading here...

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Reusable wall decals, once a figment of all wallpaper phobic imaginations (mine included) are now a reality. Combine that with my love of peacocks and unique wall art and this Décor Diva was hooked. While researching wall decals, removable wallpaper, and interesting 3-D Wall Art, I was introduced to Dezign With A Z. This fabulous Home & Wall Décor site offers wall art, wall stickers, and wall decals that will please every member of your family in multiple categories including: Floral Wall Decals, Nursery Wall Decals, Sports Wall Decals, Tree Wall Decals, Reusable Wall Murals, Wall Mirrors, Decal Coat Racks, Wall Clock Stickers, Glow in the Dark Decals, and Writable Decals. The expansive product line also offers customizable wall decals for a totally unique piece of art. Available in a range of sizes, colors, and textures, the products at Dezign With A Z are my new favorite things. Best yet, the products are reasonably priced, easy to install, and beautiful. Continue reading here for details on how I installed my Turquoise Peacock Acrylic Mirror Wall Decal.  </p> <p>
Open, inviting, yet empty, my dining room was in serious need of furniture and furnishings. First step, in the journey of transforming this space was to find a great area rug that sticks to my design mantra of being fabulous and functional. Finding a fabulous rug is easy. Finding a functional one, well that’s a matter of defining what function, other than lying on the floor, you want it to serve. A functional rug for me is one that’s soft enough to walk on barefoot without feeling any course fibers. It should also be well suited for sitting chairs or a table on it so that if you need to drag a chair across it, there will not be any ripping or damage to the rug. A functional rug should also be the right size for the room, especially when it’s for a dining room. Unless you want a wall-to-wall rug, then make sure you measure the area in the room where you want to rug to lay and buy a rug according to that.  Continue reading here...</p> <p></p>

Until Next Time...

<p>Ready, Set, Reflect!!!
Posted by cristialyse on January 02, 2014 at 9:44PM | Permalink | 0 Comments


Entertaining With Style: Threshold Dinnerware & Serveware


From the time I was a little girl, I have such great memories of my mother hosting meetings with her sorority sisters or community leaders at our home. The grace, elegance, and pride she took in not only preparing the food for her meetings, but also in presenting them to her guest, really had a major impact on me and inspired me to do the same. </p>

Entertaining in my home has always been a passion of mine. Lending itself to this passion is my obsession for stylish serveware and dinnerware that is functional as well as fabulous. Eating good food is great for the palate; however, eating great food on stylish dinnerware is great for creating an engaging and entertaining experience for your guests. In my quest to decorate on a dime and entertain on a budget, I frequently visit my local Target to see what new and exciting home décor and kitchen products I can find. On one such visit, I came across a brand that has come to be a “go-to” for outfitting my home and kitchen: Threshold!!!

Continue reading here

Posted by cristialyse on December 04, 2013 at 9:15AM | Permalink | 0 Comments


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Posted by cristialyse on December 03, 2013 at 3:48PM | Permalink | 0 Comments


Laid Out: My Search for a Fabulous & Functional Rug


Open, inviting, yet empty, my dining room was in serious need of furniture and furnishings.  First step, in the journey of transforming this space was to find a great area rug that sticks to my design mantra of being fabulous and functional. Finding a fabulous rug is easy. Finding a functional one, well that’s a matter of defining what function, other than lying on the floor, you want it to serve.  A functional rug for me is one that’s soft enough to walk on barefoot without feeling any course fibers.  It should also be well suited for sitting chairs or a table on it so that if you need to drag a chair across it, there will not be any ripping or damage to the rug. A functional rug should also be the right size for the room, especially when it’s for a dining room.  Unless you want a wall-to-wall rug, then make sure you measure the area in the room where you want to rug to lay and buy a rug according to that. 


Since going into my rug hunt, I knew that it would be under my dining room table, I wanted to make sure that it met all my functional criteria and yet, still be stylish in its design.  Now I know traditionally, people often placed neutral colored rugs (if any) under their dining room tables.  Well, there’s nothing wrong with jazzing up your rug, even if it’s under a piece of furniture.  The exposed parts will be a welcomed sight to your guest and only add to the overall design of the room.  Having previously purchased a rug set for my home from Bed, Bath and Beyond, I first searched my local store as well as online.  

Continue reading here

Posted by cristialyse on December 02, 2013 at 5:00PM | Permalink | 0 Comments


Happy Halloween from The Diva Design Diaries!

For tips & tricks, check out our Special Edition of the
Diva Life~Design Links: Halloween Entertaining Guide!

How are you Celebrating Halloween this year?

Until Next Time....

Ready, Set, Be Scary!!!

Posted by cristialyse on October 31, 2013 at 10:48AM | Permalink | 0 Comments