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Fresh Off the Boa


Stripping through the American immigrant dream one feather at a time. Sharing my life as a burlesque performer, a NYC advertising Art Director (now remote), a woman of color, an ex-New Yorker of 22 years, a Texan at heart, a foodie, and a lover of vintage culture and glamour. Welcome to Calamity's blog!

Before & After: Part 1

Updated: Dec 9, 2020

'There's too much to upload on Instagram so I've uploaded all the before and afters that I remembered to take for every room. We are pretty mindful about costs so the stores we visited were Home Depot, Lowes, Target, Wal-mart, Wayfair, and Amazon. We hired only one contractor to do drywall taping but everything else Michael did. I helped with painting, assembling lighter furniture pieces, drilling small things that didn't require anchors (aka nail condoms). No surprise, the decorating and design part is my favorite. Whenever we would drill and level, I would get hit with a wave of sleepiness. Every. Single. Time. Anyway, hope you enjoy these!

My Office + Burlesque Closet

This room is essentially a bonus room, a common feature in many of the homes here in the Poconos region. It's one large room above the garage separated by a door. One side is carpeted and has heating–this part became my office since I needed to start working right away after moving so building out this big room became a priority. But the other part of this room is raw and I knew would be perfect as a giant walk-in closet for all my burlesque stuff. This room took the longest and was the biggest renovation we had to do. Many, many, many trips to Home Depot. I've been wanting more deep emerald tones in my life, started back when I bought the chaise lounge. I picked Rainforest by Behr for the office and Coral Fountain by Marquee for the closet.

This is what the room looked like when we got it. Michael came up and put up drywalls in 2 days.

Then he insulated the walls and built two little doors on either side. We store infrequently used crap in there. It is freaking cold in this room.

Our friend Bryan Helm got suckered into helping Michael built out my burlesque closet too.

Putting up the peel and stick wallpaper from Carter & Main was a 2 person job. It was not hard but would be even easier if I didn't have to work around windows.

Ya'll voted on Instagram your preferred carpet color: 52% Silver vs 48% Dark Red. I wanted red too but when I saw it in person it was thin and ratty. Not cute at all.

This was my inspiration on the left. This is what I ended up with on the right. It is a pretty epic view when you come up the stairs as this room is at the end of the hall. I'm happy with the result considering I didn't have to break the bank!

Final view
Lorna Suit by Collectif

My mom handmade these crane cushions

Thanks to Vivienne Vavoom for gifting me the white figurines

Vintage asian lamp from Minx

Main Bedroom

The house came in a generic palest of yellows on all the walls. We knew we had to personalize some of the walls to reflect our style. We picked a dark grey by Behr called Imperial Grey and used it in the main bedroom. We've owned these horrible Ikea Pax mirrored wardrobes for 3 apartments. Yes! They've survived 3 different moves and are still standing. We hate them so much but now they look so good in this room. I knew that the mirror doors would add an extra shine that would bounce off the dark grey really well. I also wanted to achieve that minimal hotel room aesthetic for the bedroom! I love hotel life and this year with no traveling at all, this is an escape for me. And yes that's a baguette body pillow. I love body pillows!


Music Room

If we were a traditional couple this room would be the formal dining room. But fuck that. From the day I set foot in this house I knew this room would make a perfect music room for all of Michael's 900+ records! I also wanted a masculine warm vibe that is welcoming so I can sit by the window, read, eat lunch, and check my phone etc. I am deeply inspired by the industrial chic design of San Antonio's Hotel Emma ever since I was there last summer. The aesthetic is just incredible and I would do the whole house like that if it was practical. I wanted a blend of vintage & modern for this room, a bit of Wild West, rock & roll and motorcycle culture. The only new furniture we purchased for this room is the faux leather couch/bed for friends visiting. The vintage gold frame we bought a year ago at Brooklyn's Artists & Flea winter market. The cow skull from a trip to Petit Jean Mountain in Arkansas. Cattle horn we got in Huntington, NY on a weekend trip with Gin and Dane. And Thomas my old neighbor bought the cool giraffe lamp from my registry. Thanks, Thomas! Oh and the color is Behr Berry Brown.

Thanks for reading!

Coming up next:

Part 2: Guest Room, Living/Dining Room, Bathrooms, Michael's office

Part 3: Basement Apartment

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