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what if...

By 5/11/2009

everything got turned upside down and you woke up one morning and could do anything you wanted? (within reason...)

what would you do?

i'm not going to use the blog to air dirty laundry, but a month ago, i had a job. a career, of sorts. and now, i don't.

so it's my time. right now. to do something different. anything i want.

it must include:
-my husband, cats and dog
-making enough $ to pay my bills

and really that's it.

i'm open to suggestions. or sponsors.


  1. So sorry about the job loss. What about a back-to-school jaunt, if there's something you'd like to learn about long-term and assuming you could get enough teaching/TAing hours to pay the bills? Or finding something that doesn't take too much of your creative mojo and ends directly at five, so you can focus on your own creative stuff after hours?

    Good luck!

  2. I'd pay you $20 to pick out my kitchen tile. I've had bare walls for over a year now because of indecision.

  3. sold! gimme options to choose from

  4. I'd see if the SPCA had any openings (since you mentioned the animals). I think you'd be great at doing their PR / community involvement. I wouldn't peg you with law school (something you're considering in a prior post). Been there, done that. It's never what people think it is and a lot of my friends who graduated in the past 5-7 years are getting out of the law.

  5. I know what I would do, if I could just up and start fresh. I'd drag my husband and my cat to New Zealand, buy a cafe on the south end of the south island that I know is for sale. I'd set up shop, have a veggie garden and never look back.
    That or I'd move to Salt Spring Island and apprentice to be a master Miso maker from an elderly couple that have a successful business that is shutting down for good as no one has expressed interest in learning their trade. Again I'd have a veggie garden, my husband and my cat and never look back.
    Maybe I'm not the city girl I've always been.

  6. Sorry to hear.

    I think I would do something to do with creative stuff. Like sewing or knitting related. Work at a shop? For a pattern company? Magazine/publisher?

    Or before I got a job when I was in school I said I was going to be a bike messenger when I graduated.

  7. How about you and sweet husband move to Birmingham and we could open a fun store together! I need a partner.

  8. I just graduated from college and the world is currently my oyster (despite the shitty economy that I have to deal with)... So I am packing up and moving to St. Croix in the USVIs. The economy ain't so bad there. And the beaches are beautiful. And there's lots of booze. It seems like the perfect place for me.

  9. that's awesome kim!

    that was one of my ideas too, remember:

    and i was told i should be shot by a mexican drug cartel

  10. kate, wouldn't that be wonderful =)

    i'd LOVE to have a store. but retail is so hard, i hear.

  11. Kim - are you really moving there? You are killing me. I want to go! Seattle is COLD.

    JM - don't go to law school. I think you'd be miserable. I wish x10,000 that I had not gone to law school.

    Salt Spring Island is AMAZING and becoming a Miso maker?!? That's genius! I am partial to warmer climes though. I need to get away from the moderate wetness of Seattle and into some sizzling heat.

    So, Kim if you need a roommate (plus my husband and chihuahuas), let me know.

  12. JJ what do i do then? i need direction.

  13. Ummm...design consulting? Think about it: you are totally qualified to work for an existing company (considering your blog success and sales experience), or you could start your own biz. You'd be so great. I would name it HDBJ. Like HGTV, but Home Design by Jamie. It also says BJ, which I think is funny. Rock it out!

  14. I think you are already sitting on a career - your blog rocks. Why don't you start a little design company where you do the traditional - help people spend big bucks on new lovelies - but also offer the service of coming in to a house like mine, full of lovelies that have no place, and get paid to re-arrange!

  15. What's in your wheelhouse? We may be hiring at my cary workplace if you are in marketing!

    I agree, though, you could work to make your blog your biz. Admittedly, I know nothing of the workings of that process but I know it's do-able.

  16. sorry to hear about the job loss- hope life isnt too stressful right now.

    you would be a great visual merchandiser for anthropologie.

    or make the blog full time. you could do mood boards like thisyounghouse. supplemented by being a buyer for nofo's (or another) shop. and sell your awesome finds on ebay and designs on etsy.

    i know those arent exactly huge start fresh ideas, but might be a good next step assuming you all are staying in town/your house.

  17. a lot of my friends have lost jobs lately and everyone seems to be finding their creative sides. I think corporate 9-5 jobs stifles our imaginations and entrepreneurial spirit.
    Figure out how to turn your talents into a job...you have all the time to do it now.

  18. Jamie,

    I got laid off last October and it's not such a bad gig.
    I started this.

    and now I am thinking about moving to hawaii. My fiance has a job there and he was going to go for a few months at the time but we might just pick up and go. SUPER SCARY for someone who hates change.

    Know anyone that wants to rent a cute 3 bedroom house east of downtown?

  19. so what you're saying emily is we need to do lunch...

  20. word.
    i am a lady who lunches.

  21. Along with everyone else, I think you have a big opportunity with your blog. You have a young, fresh aesthetic, and I loooove to see what treasures and bookcases you've found. Snaz up your blog, get some advertisers, get a non-Blogger URL, and do something you love! I come here every day to see what you're looking at, what bookcase is on here, which pillows and ceramic stallions and painted bamboo chairs you've found on eBay...you could TOTALLY do something really cool with your eye for neat stuff! (Okay, I sound like a 5th grader. Sorry.)

  22. I love Laura's idea of being a person who goes to others homes and re-arranges/decorates with the peoples own stuff. Sordof like a "stager" except the people are not moving. I love all my "stuff" just don't have a clue how to decorate with it....and of course keeping up your blog.

  23. Uh... you should totally be a gypsy!

  24. Retail is hard, but WE could do it and Birmingham is a great place to do it!

  25. You are about 890 times funnier and more interesting and more talented than the people who run design*sponge (worst blog name ever) and decor8 (second worst). If they can do it, you should be able to clean their clocks.


  26. Ditto, what last anon said. You could totally wipe the floor with them...

  27. Perhaps you could write jokes for 30 Rock. Your blog always makes me laugh.

  28. if you find a sponsor, send them my way too.

    maybe we should have an eclectic store in 5 pts. furniture, accessories, bookcases (of course), stationary, & cupcakes (cookies would work too.)

    and our dogs can be our co-workers. i'm looking for my next move too after being a laid off interior designer for the past 5 months...

    now we just need a financier...

  29. My hubby & I live in the FL panhandle - world class beaches, NO art/design scene. We are working very deliberately (read, excruciatingly slow) on an old cottage and living in 850 sq ft in the interim. Design blogs keep me focused on the goal so I don't go nucking futs. Yours is the one that engages me the most.

    I am in the medical field, so I'm in no position to point you in the right direction, but I KNOW you can muscle this out. You're too much of a butt-kicking snowflake to be a lawyer or a prostitute.

  30. 1.Emily, whereabouts is your house?
    Myself, one sloppy man with too much crap, and a dog is just WAY too much for 700 square feet.

    2. Jamie, have you been on littlegreennotebook? She charges for design consultation. You could AT LEAST do that. I need some help wtih a few ideas I have.

    3. Please open a store in 5 points. You could sell refurbished stuff and other neat things that I can hardly afford but buy anyway and cram into my small space. Mattie and I will walk down the street and visit.

  31. first, thanks everyone for the suggestions. i think they are super interesting. especially the rearranging stuff idea. i am a MASTER of that. it's like, what i do at home.

    what would you be willing to pay for a person to come in and tell you how to rearrange your shit for optimum happiness? and hopefully no buying of new stuff, but if you NEEDED new things, what if i offered you fabulous inexpensive refurbished finds, or other ideas about where/how to get cool things on the quick and inexpensive.
    god i sound like i'm pitching an hgtv show don't i?

    continuing on rant: i HATE hgtv shows where they remake your room in one day using craptastic cheapass stuff. it looks awful. its all about the shock factor, but what about those poor people who have to live with that cheap gross stuff afterwards? i won't be doing that...

    and erin, yes to shop in five points IF they had parking and IF rent wasn't ridic. but they don't, and it is. but i would love to have a shop. please sponsor me.

  32. carrboro arts center is hiring a designer

  33. I'm with Chompy: BJ = funny, and you could easily be a design consultant.

    If you'd fly to Boulder, CO. I'd hire you in an instant.

  34. BJ are always funny.

    hilary, chompy = alexis is in boulder! are you her friend? you should be.

    what will you hire me as?

  35. I would hire you to be my furniture rearranger, thrift store item picker-outer, J. Crew sale section sifter, margarita mixer.

    I will make guac, and you bring Chompy - who is not yet my friend, but should be.

    My deck is always open!

  36. Erin,

    email me!!!
    we'll talk.


  37. Me and Hilary have your life figured out! Sweet. :) Now, I'm going to throw something out there. If you don't like it, just throw it right back...I want you to decorate my house. I mean. Well, I want you to decorate my house. Come to Boulder stat.

  38. I am in lock-step with you. Got laid off from hated consulting job last October and went back to freelance journalism (my previous gig); I'm just going week by week trying to figure out what to do with my life.

    I actually spent the last couple weeks moving my blog over to my own domain and taking baby steps towards a few other ventures on the site, including redesign/home decorating help like your readers say you should do. And you should! I'm also listing art on Etsy and trying to come up with whatever else I can to avoid going back to an office. We should start a little support group.

  39. i would say open a store too, but right now it is awful. this is coming from a home decor/furniture Store Manager. i'll tell you what though, you could really make it work. here's how:
    1. spend this time off researching a business plan and go to your local S.C.O.R.E. organization. they LOVE women entrepreneurs and want them to open stores.
    2. have two people on hand in your plan: a fabulous salesperson who isn't pushy and a reliable person to handle your accounting.
    3. without sounding completely numb: wait until the recession is over but don't wait too long.
    i think it could be for you. granted, retail is choc full 'o RISK, but you seem to have the vision/business mind for it, and that takes you a loooong way.
    do it.

  40. just sayin'. ....

    Marketing and Design Director at The ArtsCenter

    The ArtsCenter is seeking a full-time Marketing and Design Director to oversee all marketing efforts for concerts, theater, gallery, art classes, and children's programs. Responsibilities include communication with local media sources, event planning, sponsor cultivation, and coordination of all ArtsCenter marketing efforts including press releases, advertising, presentations, website maintenance, and archiving. This position is also responsible for designing all marketing publications including playbills, programs, children's brochures, advertisements, and fliers and for continuing to develop The ArtsCenter's visual identity within the broader community. The ideal candidate will be an effective communicator, meticulous editor, and fantastic designer with a passion for the arts and community. Bachelor's degrees in journalism, marketing, graphic design or business are preferred with 3 - 5 years experience in both marketing and design. Must be proficient in Adobe Creative Suite and Microsoft Office with some familiarity with html. Experience working in an arts organization is preferred. For more information about The ArtsCenter, please visit our website at www.artscenterlive.org. Deadline for submissions is May 18. Please include a cover letter, resume and three samples of your design work. Send all applications to Lauren Sacks, Associate Executive Director, at 300-G East Main Street, Carrboro, NC 27510 or email them to marketing@artscenterlive.org.

  41. i concur with everyone's ideas for you: blog as a job & furniture re-arranger! i was laid off in october and have found it equal parts frustrating and inspiring. read this and it might make you feel better:


    ...that helped me today! i love kate's idea of the support group for those of us who are considering blogging and new entrepreneurial avenues:)