Name: Leigh Poindexter
Location: Rockridge, Oakland
Size: Approximately 441.97 sq. ft. (according to Leigh's calculations)
Years lived in: 0.884 years, rented
Apparently Leigh had her work cut out for her. When she moved in she was greeted with dead mice, old linoleum and walls in desperate need of repainting, all of which she disposed of, ripped up, and painted, respectively, herself. Working on the apartment from the ground up like that, plus a knack for Craigslist and a network of artist-friends, resulted in a home that bursts with Leigh's ample personality.
While Leigh has moved on from The Dollhouse, as she calls it, she promises that her new place "is going to be full of taxidermied creatures dressed in drag." We can't wait.
My/Our Style: Dollhouse lollipop chic with a black metal bubblegum center.
Inspiration: Inspiration? Things I like that you should, too. Objective? To put a smile on the faces of everyone who enters.
Favorite Element: My color scheme somehow turned into those candy buttons. I really dig on that.
Biggest Challenge: Fitting everything in 441.97 sq. ft. Coming from the Southeast, I’m used to living in large old houses with more than ample space!
What Friends Say: Quoted from my friend Erica: "It’s like looking inside your brain!”
Biggest Embarrassment: Pageant tapes (yes, plural) from my childhood in the South. Thankfully, they’re all VHS and I don’t own a VCR. I should probably embrace it and put them in a shadow box, right next to my boyfriend’s vintage spray can of discontinued sunset orange Krylon spraypaint.
Proudest DIY: Either my 63 cicada entomology display (self-collected back in Alabama, summers and summers ago), or my curtains… man, how I love my curtains.
Biggest Indulgence: The original art adorning my walls, or maybe my four wolf dressforms take that multi-layer cake.
Best Advice: Given: Don’t be afraid of clutter. If it’s organized, it can live outside of drawers/cabinets/closets. When done right, it acts as its own design aesthetic, making a dwelling more comfortable for guests, giving it that lived-in-homey feel. I love clutter. I love clutter almost as much as matching Pantones. Received: “Don’t buy that creepy old baby doll.” Though, moments later the woman at the antique store checking out in front of us was purchasing said baby doll. The store-owner then proceeded to direct her daughter to wrap it in adult diapers, firmly stating, “be very careful with the head." I am so glad I listened to that advice.
Dream Source: I really couldn’t live without my Craigslist. My love for eBay was also revived about 2 months ago (my feedback rating has skyrocketed, a direct reflection of my decreasing bank account balance!). Where else are you going to find a vintage taxidermied penguin? I also really love going back home to estate sales and thrift stores (there are so many gems to be found that aren’t overpriced *cough* too-cool-for-school Bay Area *cough*).
Discontinued and discounted Kitchenaid mixers (mine is circa 2001 lemon yellow).
I purchased my large Sharp LCD HDTV from Dell — they sometimes offer really great deals and use trustworthy shipping companies.
Fortunate for me, but unfortunate for you, I use Craigslist for everything.
eBay, where I can find a vintage poodle knick knack for every day of the month.
Rugs and Carpets:
My dogs really don’t allow me to have anything of this nature, but I’ve always lusted after the designs and quality of the rugs of Angela Adams.
I just use regular ol’ Ikea curtain rods, sometimes even hooks if I plan on leaving a treatment stationary (I do this a lot with sheer fabric).
Most of my curtains, however, are made from vintage fabric I’ve accumulated over the years, most of it from an old fabric store in Savannah, Georgia. My favorite is old upholstery fabric; it’s nice and heavy to keep the light/heat out.
Pottery Barn has some killer antique/vintage looking iron beds. The best thing is that they’ve been updated to be platform style, meaning they don’t require a box spring or god-awful bedskirt! I found my headboard on the side of the street, i think it was waiting for me… maybe yours is out there waiting for you, too!
Probably my favorite artist, Nicholas Di Genova. He makes the most amazingly detailed creatures, that just feed my need for OCD linework and fantasy animals.
This guy Matt Cipov (Matty8080 on Etsy) does a lot with texture, small illustrations, and sharks. he made me an awesome stepford wives drawing for under a hundred bucks.
A super nice guy from back home in Atlanta, GA, R.Land uses some great color in his paintings. A lot of pinks and greens, which I’ve used a lot to pick colors for my dwellings in the past (my favorite painting is of a sea monster he did over a paint-by-number ship). Plus, he’s super nice and down to earth. My boyfriend and I probably own too much of his artwork.
Then there’s my girl Audrey Kawasaki… yeah yeah, we’ve all heard of her, she’s completely blown up in the art scene. But back in the day when we were ol’ LiveJournal buddies, she sent me this drawing of a girl with a HUGE cicada on her face… just a blue ballpoint pen on some notebook paper. Most people will probably never own one of her originals, but you can get on her mailing lists in hopes to snag a print one day.
My friend Erica has this amazing small gallery in the Mission called Iceberger. Her shows change every month, and many things are incredibly affordable.
I was perusing down 40th in North Oakland one day and fell upon this little gallery called Rowan Morrison. I have only been in there once but was really impressed at the illustrations they had up at the time, the art book selection, and even the works of past shows. I also think everything was at the right price, as art should be, to make it attainable for everyone.
Behr (found at Home Depot) has served me well, offering a wide variety of colors that require minimal coats all at an affordable price.
Ask your local linoleum dealers if they have any new vintage stock. You may pay a little bit more, but getting colors other than black, white or beige make it totally worth it!
Wallpaper: Flavor Paper, Naked & Angry
General: Etsy (I don’t sell yet, but I sure do buy!) and Flickr. I have met so many people that are creators/crafters/artists/company owners/etc. who offer me resources and inspiration daily. I used to say I hate the internet, but I guess I must now admit my love. Blast!