Not-so-Traditional Christmas

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I am not completely against the traditional red and green Christmas decorations but it’s just not my style.

Nevertheless, this year I have been running towards darker tones and hues. Green is still present, however, in the greenery/garland only. Christmas décor is no longer boring, now, you will see more of a mixture of matte black and geometric shapes. I guess you say it’s “minimalistic-modern”.

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Sapphire & Gold

 

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Geometric Shapes,Blues, Gold, ,Matte Black, and a hint of gold. I am seeing more and more of sapphire blue ornaments on Christmas trees. I am also loving that most of the ornaments are in a matte finish. Less sparkly and more matte! You will also see geometric shaped gold ornaments in the mix to give a hint of modern.

 

Green & Neutrals with candles as accents for dining. Greenery is wrapped around candles with little to no additional accent color. If there is an accent, it will be neutral, silver, or gold.  It gives it a moody/modern look to your dining setting. Bringing more mood/ambiance to the dining area. The overall focal point here, is the greenery.

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Geometric & Asymmetrical Wreaths. A different alternative to your typical green or burlap wreath, go geometric and add any greenery as you like. You will probably see a geometric metal wreath on my door step. Asymmetrical Wreaths are also in. Pick your favorite floral, add little green leaves, and have at it.

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How are you dressing up your rooms for the holidays? What colors and such spark your interest this year?

 

Be Bold, Be Blessed. Be Safe.

 

Enjoy the Holidays with your loved ones.

Disclaimer: I do not own the rights to any of these images.

Jamie Venice

Creator/Blogger/Interior Stylist of VeniDecor.com

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Should Home Decor Retailers be allowed to sale cotton stems as Fall home decorations?

OH wait a cotton pickin’ minute, have you lost your cotton pickin’ mind?! You are trying to take cotton stems from us?!

I know, I know. Another black girl talking about something else that offends her in America. However, you are more than welcome to scroll off of this post because this just might hurt your feelings.

Or keep reading if you want to be more informed!

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While I working for a home decor retailer after college, I did not enjoy bringing out the cotton stems every fall. It made me feel somewhat weird and powerless. because I knew the history behind cotton in the fall. I had no clue, however, why I continued to work for this company knowing that every year, they sold cotton stems faithfully. Oh. let’s not forget! They also sold cotton wreaths to match! How cute.

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I guess, at first, I was not aware of the issue that other’s had about it. My college friend Jasmine Hockett-Sweets, better known as Jasmine Sweets, put on snapchat while walking into a home decor retailer saying, “When did this become a trend?!” I nearly giggled to myself because I knew of this trend but never thought twice about how someone else felt about it. (Guess, my crazy butt was brainwashed in the retail life. I was used to seeing this crap every year.) You would think the south would know better. How naïve of me to think so. However, Jasmine was not the only person not here for the cotton stems. While scrolling through facebook, I discovered a article about a woman being angry about seeing cotton stems in hobby lobby. Her response was “this is reminiscent of slavery and those who were focused to pick cotton.” (Daniell Rider, you now my idol, girl. Thanks for speaking up). Ms. or Mrs. Rider, you are correct!

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Now for those who do not know much about slavery and cotton fields I am here to inform you that a retailer that sales cotton stems especially in the fall needs to do their research. Cotton fields were at their busiest in the fall due to the abundance of cotton produced. The end of August approaching fall was considered cotton picking season. So, was does this mean? Since cotton was growing in rapid rates and as high as five to seven feet high slaves had to work longer nights and quicker. The slower they worked, the more they got whipped.  The longer the work day, the less they got to sleep for the next day. Also, let’s keep in mind slaves weren’t done with their day after picking cotton. They had other chores, cutting wood, feeding the mules, you know, stuff of that nature. They also feared of oversleeping and  the consequences that came with tomorrow.

In other words, there were people that were picking cotton for you that were mistreated in the process. They were treated like machines and animals. They were treated like a product. So for those that are desensitized of the issue, you just might want to figure out and research more to understand the struggle of many just to make clothes and other products accessible to you.

So my reasoning for writing this is to spark awareness in a sense. Should retailers be allowed to sale cotton stems? Should they be taken off of shelves because of the offensive message it gives off to consumers? My answer is yes! I also believe Native American attire should be taken out of halloween/costume stores, but that’s a story for a different day. How do you feel about cotton being sold annually during the fall season? Tell me your thoughts. I just think we should stop throwing cotton on things and calling it rustic/ farmhouse.

Sincerely,

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Jamie Venice

A Moment of Wisdom: It is okay, to not be okay

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Photography by Charlisha Renata

 

 

I need a moment to be completely transparent with you guys. I was going through a lot last month. Something unexpected happened in Nashville that I rather not discuss because I am completely embarrassed about the matter. Secondly, My brand new car got rear ended by a horrible Nashville driver ( a hit and run at my apartments). Lastly, later in the month my uncle passed away. I personally believe that bad things happens in threes, well, in my life any ways.

What’s rather odd but normal,  is that I was acting as if everything was okay. I clocked in and out of work as normal. I smiled and said bye to my coworkers, but while driving back home I wouldn’t feel right. When I got home, I would just cry until I fell asleep.  I was not okay with my life last month. Nothing seemed to be going my way, really. A storm literally hit my life and continued to throw thunderbolts daily. I continued to act like everything was okay. I pretty much used work to keep my mind off of things. Temporarily it worked. No one knew that I was not okay except for a few people that I keep near and dear to my heart.

However, my question is to why do we act like everything is okay when it isn’t? Why do we  paint false images on social media when nothing is okay? It is like we are afraid to be human. We want to be perfect. We want to be seen as perfect and I have to say it is tiring to act as such. No one can relate to perfection. Being transparent is what helps others. Your testimony is what God wants us to share. It is okay to not be okay. It is okay to cry. It is okay to feel emotionally numb for a day. It is okay to feel anger for a few minutes, but you have to continue to keep it moving.

Myleik Teele twitted something that helped me during these bad times.

She tweeted “Every now and then I doubt my abilities. Normal. One thing I don’t do is stand still in doubt. I doubtfully MOVE. Must keep it moving.”

In my doubt, hurt, and confusion, I was not moving forward. I was sitting in self-pity. This month my focus is moving forward, doing things that I love unapologetically, and finding my own ounce of happiness on this earth. With everything going on in this world, we must move forward.

The Lord said in Jeremiah 29:11-14,

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you, “declares the Lord, “and will bring you back from captivity.

If in doubt or worry, Go to God. Especially, with everything that is wearing us down daily in this world.

 

Love you beautiful people and God bless.

 

 

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Veni Décor

 

 

Fall Home Décor Trends of 2017

Ohhh, Is it fall again? This year is really going passed us. In four months, we will be close to 2018. It is pretty insane as to how fast time goes by. But anyways, with every season comes different home decor trends, however, when researching what is popular this year I did not want to see a chevron pumpkin. (Thank you, God!) Eh, but since I live in the south, I am pretty sure I will see a few chevron pumpkin on a porch or two.

 You know what we can do with chevron pumpkins and burlap? Throw them in the trash!

Do not hate the messenger. Burlap and pumpkins are a bit played out. Sorry to say. Let’s discuss my favorite fall home decor trends of 2017.

 

My Fall Decor Trend Picks for 2017:

 

 

Emerald Green and Blush-You will see a repeat of emerald greens in furniture as wall as wall art. I was excited to see my favorite color pink come into play for this fall season. Blush will mostly be in your accessories and throws.

 

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Brass is going to be used more often in your lighting fixtures, accessories, and coffee tables will have accents of brass. Love it!

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Velvet & Leopard Print– Pillows are not your traditional ” fall” pillows. I am not seeing much of pillows that say “thankful” or “blessed” to put on your sectionals/ sofas this year. They are playing more with fabrics and textures. Velvet is here to stay! Velvet is not only going to be on your pillows but your sofas are in a dark navy. I am completely here for it. You will definitely see a few velvet pillows with leopard print.

 

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Woven Accessories– For those who already have woven baskets in your home, you are definitely in trend. Woven baskets can not only be used for you plants but as your wall art. Hanging woven baskets on your wall adds texture.

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Faux finished walls– Marble wallpaper is here and in trend. If you want an accent wall in your home this is the best time to change it up.

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Lastly but not least,

Bohemian Accents– Bohemian accent rugs and poufs will continue to be seen throughout this season.

How are you guys getting your homes ready for fall? What are you favorites so far for the fall?

 

Best wishes and many blessings,

Jamie Veni

 

Photographs from Pinterest

Editor Albert Akpotu

Other’s opinions do not pay the bills

but they do add a load of setbacks in life in general.

People and their opinions I tell you. You can not breathe without being criticize for it. I am not going to lie I listened to what others  had to say about me. Every negative word said from others stayed with me over the years. Beginning to take words seriously, I wanted to change every ounce of myself just to fit into a crowd. I knew that I was different somehow but I no longer wanted to stand out in a negative way. Well, at the time, I perceived it at as negative but later on I discovered that maybe these things are not so negative.

but I must say..these negative things did not stop me from building insecurities.

How does someone face insecurities all together though? Mainly by defining exactly what insecurity you have and then addressing what caused this insecurity thing to come about.

Insecurities are just a result of things we have  heard and experienced in our lives. You have to figure out what you are insecure about and get over it by finding something positive about it. For instance, I am introverted but there are others just like me in this world. I am not alone what so ever. Actually, being introverted is the norm now. Who isn’t nowadays?  Secondly, write down what you are insecure about and what caused you to be insecure all together. After figuring out what caused those insecurities, you can then face them head on.

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Determine if you are receiving constructive criticism verse a random opinion. You basically need to find clarity if someone is really just  saying something out of their butt because they just feel the urge to do so. Ask questions. Why does this person feel this way? If there is little to no feedback, then someone is just speaking on jealously in their own selves and putting it out on you. In other words, GIRL BYE! Two snaps two circles. Now if this criticism is somewhat helpful, listen to it and apply it to your life.

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People that accept you for  who you are, are the only people you should be concerned about. There are people that love the way you are and do no criticize you for it. You have to literally evaluate the circle of people you associate with. If those people consistently find something wrong with you then may be there is something actually something wrong with them. They may be throwing their own insecurities on you or better yet may just be jealous of something your possess.

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I’ve noticed this over the years. A person will point out something that you have in a negative light just because they want what you have.

which goes into another point, pay attention to a person’s motives

Where are these criticisms coming from? Where is this person’s heart when they speak.  Is it to help me or to bring me down? Oh, and do not forget about those people that just want to give you advice just to get credit for doing something to “help” you/make them feel better about themselves.  Don’t you just hate those kinds of people? Do not let someone use you just to fulfill a good deed for the day. You are not a charity case after all.

but back to what I was saying…

 Then you can further figure out what is best for you at this point.  If you figure out that it is not coming out of love then do not allow these people to continue to be around. Ain’t Nobody got time for that!! That includes family members. (I rather not go further on that because that will be a whole blog in itself. Family members can somewhat be toxic as well.) I am also the queen of letting people go little to no warning. So, I might not be the best person to talk to about letting people go and such. Let’s just say, I do not believe in wasting time what so ever. I do not believe in allowin people to collect space in my life when they do not deserve it. Just saying boo.

Personally, I have learned to not allow things hinder me from my blessings and from blessing others. I do not allow people to steal my joy because they are miserable in their own skin. You should not allow it either. Life is too short to allow others to stop you from being yourself just because they do not accept who you are. Eliminate the dead weight and allow yourself to continue to grow and flourish into the person God intended you to be. Be you. Forget what other’s are saying. Walk into you destiny and keep it moving.

And just remember, opinions do not pay the bills unless it has something to do with your business but other than that opinions do not matter what so ever.

With Love and God Bless,

Jamie Veni

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Photography by Marlon Williams

Did I miss my calling? What’s my purpose?

First and foremost, Thank you for all the support I have received so far on my blog. I highly appreciate every single comment (even the negative ones and I am not being sarcastic here). I appreciate the time everyone took to share my words with your friends and loved ones. I am forever grateful.

I apologize for my absence. I had a bad case of writer’s block. I want to make sure that everything I write is as transparent and relatable as the first. Anywho….let’s get to it!

 

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I often see people as well as myself trying to still figure out what their overall purpose in life is. Have you ever asked yourself this question? What’s my purpose? What am I really suppose to be doing?

Sometimes you find yourself dwelling on that thought. The thought of not knowing. Self doubt causing fears to arise allowing you to believe you are not ready to pursue your purpose. People consistently telling  you what you should and need to pursue does not help the situation what so ever. You are then forced to over think things and go down a different path that you did not begin for yourself. What makes matters worst you start wasting time thinking and doing things you wasn’t built to do.  Later, you will find yourself settling for what is told by others rather than what your inner being is telling you to do.

 

My story is simply this. I wanted to be a dentist in kindergarten. Later, I found out that I don’t like teeth like that so…yea. A big no to dentistry. I also wanted to pursue fashion design.. I wanted to be a fashion designer for barbie (lol). I drew clothes and created them for my babies using a CD software game. I often look back on that. I still think about that to this day. My mother pushed me to pursue interior design, so I did. I went to college in the interior design department butI was often mistaken for a fashion design major because of the way I dressed. Nope, I was an interior design major. A creative individual making C’s in color and composition and drafting. My rendering professor told me that I should become an illustrator because I put my heart and soul into my renderings. He also told other as well as myself that I needed to learn how to tone down my renderings but the other students needed to learn how to put themselves in their drawings like myself. It was a compliment to me. I knew how to do things others couldn’t seem to grasp. I was different, however I wasn’t fitting in this interior design world. Everything I  seemed to produce was not near to perfection as my professors wanted. In other words, I was too creative for interior design but perfect for interior decorating. Even during my internship, I was told I should be a sales rep and that I knew how to find ways to display home accessories. (Basically, you should sell for vendors and do some visual merchandising. Spoiler alert: visual merchandising is what I do now for a furniture company. Yes, I am pretty much the interior decorator but for a store.) Not something I wanted to hear during my senior year of college. A sales rep? Really? You gotta be kiddin’ me.

Long story short, I graduated college  Thank ya Laude with a  Bachelors degree in Home Furnishings because they closed down the interior design department.

 

Fast forward to the present, I am now being to told to start my own design consulting business and  pursue modeling. Even though, I work full time now and I am only a close to 30 year old woman that so happens to be too short to model. Eh, we will see people.

We are pushing it a bit with my age and height.

How do you find your purpose when others are constantly telling you what you should do?

There are ways to figuring out what you should be doing my simply listening to yourself. In my story, you will notice that I listened to some advice. I ran towards what seemed logical. I did not however let comments of other to dictate what I decided to do for myself. Listen to yourself. Listen to your intuition. Follow your gut. God gave us free will and our inner voice for a reason.

 

Do not listen to everything people say, but to some. Some advice given you have to take with a grain of salt. You have to pay attention to people’s motives. They may be giving you this advice to steer you in the wrong path. (In other words, steer you into the path THEY see you in). They could also be helping you find something that you do well. My professor said that I should consider becoming an illustrator because of something I did well. He was not saying ” You should not be an interior designer.” He was simply pin pointing something I did well. Also, things being said by others could be confirmation as to what you really need to be doing. Let’s just say, you prayed on something and a few days later someone points out “Girl/Gentlemen, you should be doing this!” God, could be using that person just to give you the confirmation that you needed. You just have to know when to listen and when to ignore.

 

When you figure out your purpose make sure to ask God for clarity. I do not believe in jumping into anything without confirmation from God. Finding your purpose is not easy. Fear will take over your mind causing you to doubt, but keeping God in that journey will insure you that everything will be okay.

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Your purpose is in something you naturally do. Something you are born with that others can not do as well as you. Are you doing what you love? or Are you doing what is comfortable? Your comfort zone is not a good place to be. If you are not challenging yourself you are not living in your purpose. If you are just clocking into a job and not fulfilling that gift that was given to you then you my friend are not living in your purpose. Your purpose may not just be one thing. It could be multiple things. Most of us are gifted in many things you just have to mentally decide to just do it. Everything you do well is not by consequence.

 

Where do you think I would be if I listened to what everyone said. Probably, a dentist like I wanted to be in kindergarten. Just because they made money. Even during college I was frown upon for choosing something in the arts to pursue but that was my purpose. I was born to create. I was born to inspire. I was born to serve while using the gifts God gave me. So the answer to the question I asked. “Am I living in my purpose?” Yes. “Did I lose my calling? No. I am a designer for a furniture company, model when I get a gig, draw/paint when I am asked to produce custom art and decorate homes upon request. I never stopped believing in myself and I never stopped doing what I love because others had an opinion. I am living in my purpose but however I am not done with my career. This is just the beginning

 

Continue to dream and live in your purpose.

And if you aren’t living in your purpose yet, you will once you decide in your mind that you are good enough to just do it.

 

Sincerely,

 

Jamie Veni

Approaching 30, Not Married, & Unbothered.

Before you start reading, I am just 27 but I will be turning 28 soon. But whatever, read. I wrote some good stuff, I promise.

So, I am pretty sure everyone wanted me to write a home decor blog for my first official “blog” on my website. If you did not want that topic then I’m pretty sure you expected it but either way I figured I would touch on something more personal and relatable. Well, let’s not beat around the bush and get to it, shall we.

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I recently saw people on my timeline this year posting a meme saying “Did not get engaged on December 25th.” As if they were throwing shade to those that actually got engaged or just sad that you just didn’t get that ring this year. Or posting hints to get the single fellas to get your digits and marry you.  I highly understand the pressure of getting engaged/married before you turn 30. Your parents want to have a son in law and cute grand babies they can spoil rotten. On top of that, every year approaching 30 is a reminder that your biological clock is ticking. OH! also watching your best friends get married every year and having to buy a bridesmaid dress. Later on, every time you look in your closet you see those 15 bridesmaid dresses. (I only got three bridesmaid dresses just to clear the air… ONLY 3.)

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Another reminder that a girl just can’t find her knight in shiny armour any quicker than Mariah Carey can find her high note again. (Okay, that was a bit harsh because I love Mariah Carey but let’s carry on)

Sweetheart, I know the struggle is real but let’s get real somethings will happen with time.

Wait, now before you get on my case let’s break down why you should be unbothered (like me) about not being married before 30.

Marriage is not an accomplishment, it is work between two partners that love one another.

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It requires God, patience, communication, and whole lot of sacrifices. You have to give yourself fully and there is no room for selfishness. You have to be ready for that kind of commitment. My friends have shown me true love in their marriages. They love their husbands and they also are their best friend. So, it is safe to say I have great examples through my friends. I have watch some of them sacrifice holidays to be with their spouses’s loved ones instead of their own for a major holiday. And yes, sometimes you can’t always get what you want. Yes, that means you have to watch the way you spend so both y’all won’t be broke. (You just might have to give up going to Target every week. I know. How sad! What a nightmare!) Men , hide your kids and hide your credit cards.

DO not believe the HYPE . I have a love/ hate relationship for social media. It creates false images and insecurities. Every thing on social media is not golden I promise you. I have seen way too many couples post their every move and then break up and disappear like nothing happened. (Okay, I am guilty of this and I just stomped on my own toes. I am human. do not judge me. I was in college and in love.) Some people that post their happiness are actually happy but there are those few people that post just to make it seem like they are. I am not saying go to someone’s instagram and look at their pictures and imprint in your mind that “They may not be happy” to feed your own misery and sadness. I am just simply saying “DO NOT BELIEVE THE HYPE”! and Do not let social media stuff get to you. Be happy for others for once people.

There is not an age deadline for marriage/relationship of some sort. I repeat “There is not an age deadline for marriage.” Why do we give ourselves to 25 to get married? You can not even predict your future so why do we think we can tell ourselves at what age we should get married? I will be 28, still single and absolutely loving that I am. Why? Because I personally need the time to make myself available to my future husband by working on myself. I was in a 5-6 year relationship that required some healing and reflecting. I had to have time to figure out myself again and what I really wanted in a future relationship. That kind of reflecting takes time. You can not rush the process. Anything rushed will not last.

Lastly, You are not alone. There are plenty of women that are not married just yet. Woman that are working their butts off and still single just like you. You are not the only one working a full time job, chasing your dreams, and getting a masters. Heck, some y’all are working on a doctorate. I looked at a Steve Harvey show once about making room for what you want. He basically said “In order to receive a blessing you have to make room.” He told his mom that he is getting a new car and every time he mentioned getting a new car she responded  ” But you have not moved your old car yet off the street.” Think about it. Do you have time for a relationship/marriage? Are you in an emotional/physical/mental state for this kind of commitment? Spiritually, are you ready for something that will require you to focus on something other than yourself during this process? How is your relationship with God? Is it good? How often do you read about the roles of a husband and a wife in the bible? Are you ready for what the bible says according to God’s word? Have you made room for love in your heart from previous pain from old relationships?  If the answer to these question are No then maybe you have not made room for your blessing just yet. It is coming but you have to make room. You have to leave a lot of baggage in 2016 and build on what you learned.

I really hope that everyone had an awesome New Year. Even if you spent it alone, you woke up on January 1st, 2017 alive and well. That’s more of a blessing then getting a kiss under the fireworks. One day, you will get that moment but for now build to make that moment happen.

Sincerely,

Jamie Veniimg_05901