House to Home with Debbie Travis
Decorating expert and television personality Debbie Travis appears in The Telegram’s My Home each week.
everything, then we can understand that nothing is ever ordinary,” says Barbara Irwin, owner of Barbara’s Birdcage. Irwin is a found object artist who transforms castaway items into unique works of art. Dozens of found bird cages are repurposed as tiny stages that hold a wild variety of vignettes, many made from old dolls. Her collections not only fill the home’s whimsical interior, but also decorate the exterior walls and surrounds.
Analyn Hughes lives in a “normal” apartment building, but her space is where Non-Conformity flourishes. Hughes is known as Queen of the Weird in Austin. A life-sized (papier mache?) pig glamorously festooned with a hairband sits on top of the stainless steel fridge. The fridge door is decorated with handmade fabric flowers and a tiny doll’s head is framed with coloured pencils and titled “She led a colorful life”.
What can weird or strange teach us? Is it beneficial on a larger scale? A development of Mobile Loaves & Fishes called Community First! Village shows us it can. The inhabitants of the Village are men and women who are coming out of chronic homelessness. The housing options available to the residents of this community vary from professionally-designed micro-homes, RVs, canvas cottages, airstream trailers and even teepees. A new medical facility and other support services are part of the community complex.
You might, as is the author’s hope, “take away design, architecture, and art tips and tricks to add flair to your everyday spaces.” But for sure you will be entertained and delighted by the magnitude of talent, imagination and artistry each home represents.
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