Monday, October 6, 2008

Inspiring Interview { John & Sherry Petersik }

I'm not sure how I stumbled upon This Young House, but once I did, I was immediately hooked. Young. Motivated. And totally stylish. John & Sherry are the creative brains behind the popular blog that's brimming with DIY, room redos and mood boards. What began as a personal home blog has blossomed into a full time gig helping readers turn their tired rooms into beautiful havens. The talented duo even have a little online shop where they flex their design skills and offer fun and cheeky original prints at a very affordable price. Without further ado, we welcome John & Sherry as our latest inspiring interview.

What's the best thing about blogging and why did you get started?
Sherry: It was actually John's idea to start a tiny little blog to document the progress of our kitchen renovation for our friends and family but I was a little resistant at first. The irony is that it's actually become my full time job and I LOVE everything about it.

John: We both came from a profession where there were a dozen people telling us what to say and how to say it (we met in New York City working in the advertising industry) so the freedom to control our own content and say what we want, when we want is absolutely the most exciting and rewarding thing about blogging.

Where do you see yourself and your blog in 5 years?
John: Well lets see, we'll definitely still be living in this house.

Sherry: We love our house. We've worked so hard to create a personalized little nest for ourselves, so I see us in our current home blogging away- maybe with a baby blogger or two to keep us company.

When you have "designer's/decorator's block", what do you do to get the inspiration flowing again?
John: Hug it out. Just kidding. But maybe I'm not really kidding because I go to Sherry and she comes to me. The collaborative process and the ability to bounce ideas off each other is priceless.

Sherry: It's true. And we love that we're in it together. For example, if I'm trying to whip up a custom mood board for a particularly challenging space and I can't even stare at the screen anymore I'll ask John to peek over my shoulder and he'll say something like "oh, what about red stools at the bar" and it'll totally fire me up and get me going again.

What's one thing about you that would surprise people?
Sherry: I don't drive. I went to college in New York City and then joined the rat race there for a few years, and in almost a decade of Manhattan living I just took the subway or hailed a cab. So when we moved to Richmond, Virginia I thought I'd immediately jump back in the saddle. Guess I'm a little slow on the uptake because two years later I'm still not driving.

John: I'm secretly a cat person. Didn't see that coming did you? We're so obsessed with our chihuahua Hamburger that no one can believe growing up I was equally obsessed with my cat Casper. I even made weird little music videos with him as the star.

If you had an entire day all to yourself, how would you spend it?
John: There's a big river that runs through Richmond and we love to go there and just lounge on the rocks in the middle of the river and take a dip when it gets too hot. It's like a mini vacation 15 minutes from our house. The perfect day would be hitting the river in the morning, then taking the dog for a walk and then maybe a sushi dinner.

Sherry: And then reading at Barnes & Noble. We love to just veg out for a few hours with stacks of books and glossy magazines and one of those big cookies they sell at the Starbucks counter.

What's your most treasured belonging?
John: I have this blue blanket with sheep on it from when I was five. I used to take it everywhere and sleep with it every night. I've recently passed it down to my son (our dog Hamburger) and he sleeps with it now so that's pretty treasure-able.

Sherry: My engagement ring and my wedding ring are by far my most treasured possessions. John got it so so right. But because that might be a slightly boring answer I'll share my second most treasured belongings: my dog sculptures. I realize this sounds insane but I have a giant concrete greyhound (which John surprised me with for Valentines' Day after I spotted it at a garden center) and a big white ceramic dog that I snagged for $29 at Home Goods. A few months later I noticed that Jonathan Adler and Kelly Wearstler were both using big ceramic dogs that looked just like mine to swankify million dollar hotels and even their own homes. I know it sounds weird but my big fake dogs make me feel posh.

Finally, what are you coveting this fall?
Sherry: A meyer lemon tree in a big mossy ceramic pot for the corner of our dining room, a red trench coat, and an organic queen sized mattress to replace our old lumpy hand me down.

John: A Mac Book Pro, a new pair of running shoes, and a traffic-free Thanksgiving road trip to see family in New York.

Thanks John & Sherry, for taking the time to chat with us!