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    The Obamas’ Interior Decorator Releases Photos Of Their Self-Funded $1.5 Million White House Renovation – BET - September 4, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    If youve ever daydreamed about walking through the halls of the White House during the Obamas eight-year stay, youre in luck!

    In a newly-released book titled,Designing History: The Extraordinary Art & Style of the Obama White House, the Obamas entrusted interior designerMichael S. Smithgives us all a behind-the-scenes look into what it took to create the perfect home for the family of four.


    Highlighting all the detailed workincluding a $1.5 million renovation of the residence that the Obamas paid out of pocketthe $60 book featuring 372 color photographs and illustrations is undoubtedly a must-have for any coffee table or bookshelf.

    According to a press release obtained by theDaily Mail, the book explores how the house reflected the youthful spirit of the first family and their vision of a more progressive, inclusive American society.

    Along with behind-the-scenes stories of the redecorating efforts, the images showing the living quarters of the 44th president and his family are worthy of conversationespecially since the book was described as both a historical document and a voyeur's delight.

    Highlights of the book include taking a glimpse inside our forever POTUS and FLOTUS master bedroom.The warm and neutral room, whereBarackandMichelleslept, seemed to echo the couples warm disposition.

    (Photo: Brooks Kraft LLC/Corbis via Getty Images)

    It was personally very important to me to design a master bedroom that would be a true refuge for the president and first lady, Smith shared.

    Overlooking the South Lawn below, the naturally sunlit room featured design elements chosen by Michelleincluding an early 19th-century American high-post bed with a canopy that Mr. Obama wasnt too excited about initially.

    I had proposed a canopy bed to them early on, and though the president wasnt keen on the idea at first, he graciously deferred to his wife, saying, If Michelle wants it, then we can have it, Smith recalled.

    He continued, Its ironic, but nearly everyone who is initially hesitant when I suggest a canopy bed ends up loving it. I find it creates a real sanctuary in a room, a retreat within a retreat and it can be especially helpful in establishing a sense of architecture within a minimalist space.

    It is interesting to note that the Obamas, who moved in during the Great Recession, turned down the $100,000 in taxpayer money typically allotted to new presidents to redecorate. Instead, the family financed their own redecorations and used methods like budget-shopping and borrowing art from museums to help keep interior designing costs down.

    And this is why they are our forever favorites!

    To see more highlights of the homeincluding their antique furniture, art loaned by museums, and a pair ofMuhammad Alis boxing gloves autographed to Barack,you may want to get your hands on this iconic book that was released today!

    (Photo: ANNIE LEIBOVITZ/AFP via Getty Images)

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    The Obamas' Interior Decorator Releases Photos Of Their Self-Funded $1.5 Million White House Renovation - BET

    What Will the Fall Social Season Look Like This Year? – Yahoo Lifestyle - September 4, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Your fall formalwear is going to join your summer dresses and spring gowns on the bench. After much of the spring season was rapidly canceled or postponed to the fall, back when we were all still in denial over the longevity of the pandemic the reality of the upcoming fall social season is beginning to take shape (well, sort of).

    Some of the seasons most anticipated events most of the performing arts fund-raisers, for instance are off the schedule for the rest of the year, without a fall performance season to account for. Many of the more social causes have committed to virtual benefits. First up is the Kips Bay Presidents Dinner on Sept. 10, which the team says is practically sold out. The evening will feature video messages from Misty Copeland and Lin-Manuel Miranda and will honor interior decorator John Rosselli; pre-event cocktail hour will happen in the form of individual breakout rooms, so each table can have a chance to mingle. The Restoration Hardware table, for instance, will be chatting over a bottle of wine from RHs wine cellar at Yountville in the Napa Valley, which will be sent to each table guest.

    Also on the online social schedule is Planned Parenthood of Greater New York, which will host a party (Questlove is DJing) and benefit auction with a bevy of artists slated to attend on Sept. 21; the BCRF will host a virtual symposium and luncheon on Oct. 16, following the success of their virtual hot pink party in May that raised $5.2 million (not bad considering last years IRL event raised $6 million).

    The New York Academy of Art is also pivoting to digital for its fall fund-raiser auction, re-branding it from Take Home a Nude to Artists for Artists. Works by artists like Jeff Koons, Kiki Smith, Lola Schnabel, Shepard Fairey, Laurie Simmons, Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin will be exhibited at the Academy for a month visitors can stop by for a socially distanced viewing and auctioned through Artsy. NYAA will also host a livestreamed event on Oct. 20 with a live auction component.

    Story continues

    October (usually) culminates with Hulaween, New York Restoration Project founders Bette Midlers Halloween costume benefit gala. Plans for this year are still in the works, but it will include a virtual event on Oct. 30 as well as pre-Halloween treats and entertainment. Hulaween could not come at a better time as there is a renewed need for funding to support NYRPs 52 parks and gardens, says Erica Helms, chief advancement officer for NYRP. All of which provide green space for historically underserved communities to grow their own food, connect with neighbors, and access safe, open space close to home during the COVID era and always!

    Hopeful in-person events include the New York Botanical Gardens, which are uniquely well-positioned given, you know, its an outdoor garden. Their Fall in Love With the Garden Again fall party, honoring Hearst director Gilbert C. Maurer, is planned for early October, and still set for in-person. The Golden Heart Awards, which benefit Gods Love We Deliver, have shifted back from their usual October date to early December, on World AIDS Day, with both a virtual option and a plan for in-person, if such is allowed in New York by then. If virtual, the committee will send a care package to guests homes to re-create the usual dinner gala as best they can.

    As for the seasons other hallmark charity events The Central Park Ladies Luncheon, American Natural History Museum gala packed with SNL personalities, the MAD Ball, MoMAs Chanel-supported film benefit no word yet on whether they will sit the season out altogether.

    Although Broadway remains dark until at least early next year, the industry will gather belatedly virtually, that is to honor talent from the shortened season. The Tony Awards, typically held in June, will take place this fall on a date still to be revealed. Eligible shows to be nominated include Slave Play, Moulin Rouge, Jagged Little Pill and The Inheritance. The IFP Gotham Awards, which honor independent filmmaking, were originally scheduled to take place at Cipriani Wall Street on Nov. 20 but have been postponed until January.

    On the film front, the New York Film Festival will play on. The festival runs Sept. 17 through Oct. 11, with films screening virtually and at drive-in theaters at the Brooklyn Army Terminal and New York Hall of Science in Queens. The opening night film is Steve McQueens Lovers Rock, with other anticipated premieres to follow, including Chlo Zhaos Nomadland and French Exit.

    Cinema Societys Andrew Saffir, who has been hosting socially distanced outdoor screenings in the Hamptons all summer, is optimistic that events will slowly but surely start to take place this fall. I do think it will take some time before people are comfortable in a crowded theater (and were still waiting for theaters in New York City to open back up), but I do think theres an opportunity to do something along the lines of what weve been doing this summer smaller screening events, where everyone is spaced safely apart, in nontraditional spaces acting as theaters, and with invitees we know have been careful, Saffir says.

    The season wont be going on with its usual warm-weather bang, since Art Basel Miami Beach has officially been canceled as of this week. In the meantime, well see you online.

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    What Will the Fall Social Season Look Like This Year? - Yahoo Lifestyle

    The forgotten Olympic weightlifting hero of the Munich massacre – The Times of Israel - September 4, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    For those of us who compete in the sport of Olympic Weightlifting, there are legions of greats, unknown to the mainstream, who inspires us and we aspire to emulate. This cohort usually exhibit similarly characteristics: they are top level competitors who have exhibited incredible feats of strength, showcased technical prowess, or displayed formidable tenacity. Oftentimes, they also inspire because they have demonstrated resilience in the face of adversity, both in their personal and athletic lives, that invoke feelings of awe and admiration.

    For instance, scar Figueroas incredible journey to finally becoming Olympic champion at the 2016 Rio Olympics comes to mind; Lu Xiaojun overcoming his back injury mid-competition during the 2019 World Championships to set new world records at the age of 36 is another good example. Many of us also have a hard time forgetting Matthias Steiners spine-tingling victory at the 2008 Beijing Olympics after promising his late wife that he would bring her home a gold medal. All of these individuals are pioneers of the sport in their own right. However, there is one name that has been left out of the history books of Olympic Weightlifting, yet whose deeds and character, at least in my humble opinion, puts him at the apex of the heroes of Olympic Weightlifting and Olympic history: Israeli Olympian, Yossef Romano.

    Yossef Romano, one of the Israeli Olympians who were murdered in Munich in 1972. (Wikipedia)

    Born in Benghazi, Libya on April 15th, 1940 to a Jewish family, he was one of 10 children. When Yossef was six years old, the Romano family migrated to then-Mandatory Palestine. An interior decorator by trade, he discovered his love for Olympic Weightlifting at the age of eighteen and dreamed of representing the newly founded nation of Israel on the world stage at the Olympic Games. Competing in the lightweight (67.5kg) and middleweight (75kg) categories, Yossef held the Israeli national champion title for ten years. So dedicated he was to his craft, he often missed work for training, and was even fired from several jobs as a result. Not only that, Yossef also gave his time in service to the sport, simultaneously coaching and managing his association of Hapoel Tel Aviv. In 1971, his hard work finally paid off and his lifelong dream was realized when he was selected to represent Israel at the XX Olympiad in Munich, West Germany in the 75kg category. But Yossef was also a dedicated husband and loving father of three daughters, so he made a promise to his wife Ilana, that after he competes at the Olympic Games, he will retire from competition.

    The competition itself however, was not the dream-come-true that Yossef, or any competitor, would have wanted. On the day of his competition on August 31, 1972, Yossef ruptured a tendon in his knee mid-competition and was forced to pull out with a DNF result. Yossef decided to stay for the remainder of the Games in support of his team, and was scheduled to fly back to Israel on September 6th for surgery.

    On the evening of September 5th, just a few hours before his scheduled flight, a militant group known as the Black September Organization stormed their way into the Olympic Village in Munich where the Israeli athletes were staying and took hostage 11 members of the Israeli team including both coaches and athletes. Many scholars and journalists, more articulate and well-read than I, have recounted this event in great detail, so I wont delve into the specific chronology of events here. Instead, I want to focus on the acts of heroism displayed by Yossef.

    A veteran of the Israeli military who have seen action in the 1967 Six Day War, Yossef sprang into action when the intruders came to their apartment block with the other hostages in an attempt to round up the remaining Israeli team. As they were being led out, Yossef attacked one of the gunmen and tried to disarm him so that he could give his teammates the opportunity to escape. He was able to injure the gunman and take his weapon away, but not before being overwhelmed by the rest of the assailants. Yossef was reportedly shot and tortured to death in front of his teammates, with his body left at their feet as a warning to others who dare to try. Tragically, a massacre ensued after a botched rescue attempt by the West German police, and none of the 11 Israeli hostages taken that night survived. Other victims from the Olympic Weightlifting community include coach and judge Yakov Springer (1921 1972), a Holocaust survivor and member of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, flyweight (52kg) Zeev Friedman (1944 1972), who finished 12th at Munich which was the highest rank achieved by any Israeli athlete at the time, and lightheavyweight (82.5kg) David Mark Berger (1944 1972), who was the Asian weightlifting silver medalist in 1971. Yossef Romano is survived by his wife Ilana, and his three daughters, Oshrat, Rachel, and Schlomit.

    Yossefs story resonates with me on so many levels. For one, he and I competed in the same weight class, he at 67.5kg, and I at 67kg. Second, and most importantly, we are both military veterans. So each time I read about Yossefs story, I ask myself, would I have had the courage, the selflessness, and the gumption to do what he did so that my team can have a fighting chance, however slim? We all want to think of ourselves as the heroes of our stories, and we all want to believe that when the chips are down, we too would also act without hesitation to do the heroic, and right thing. But is this really a reasonable expectation to hold for ourselves? I argue, in these circumstances of extreme duress, its not reasonable for us to expect that we will spring into action the way Yossef did, simply because most of us wont have the training and preparation to overcome our fear and instincts of self-preservation in the moment. And we should not feel any guilt and shame for it. In the military, they train and drill us for years upon years to overcome this basic survival drive, so that we are able and willing to put ourselves in harms way, but that takes a lot of conditioning and training that is neither reasonable, desirable, nor practical for most people to undergo. This is precisely why I believe Yossef deserves to be placed on the pedestal of heroes for our sport. He really is extraordinary in every sense. Even as I write these words, I have goosebumps running down my back, and my eyes well up thinking about the character of this man.

    Legendary weightlifting coach Greg Everett once wrote that he doesnt care about his athletes physical potential so much as he cares whether or not they have good character. So the question that Yossefs story makes me ask myself is, who am I outside of weightlifting? Not what am I, but who am I? This is a lesson I strive to impress on my athletes: before you try to be a good weightlifter, be a good person first, and the rest will follow. In the words of Auschwitz survivor Primo Levi, I also know how important it is in life not necessarily to be strong but to feel strong, to measure yourself at least once, to find yourself at least once in the most ancient of human conditions, facing blind, deaf stone alone, with nothing to help you but your own hands and your own head.

    Thank you Yossef, for helping us understand what it means to be, and to feel strong. On this month, the 48th anniversary of your tragic passing, we remember you. May you rest in power.

    Cheng Xu is a PhD student in political science at the University of Toronto. He has served for nearly 10 years in the Canadian Armed Forces as an infantry officer and paratrooper. He is also a nationally ranked competitive Olympic weightlifter, and is currently the head coach of a Toronto based Olympic weightlifting club, Rx Weightlifting.

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    The forgotten Olympic weightlifting hero of the Munich massacre - The Times of Israel

    Man’s brutal assessment of ‘rank’ home makeover labelled best reaction ever – Mirror Online - September 4, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Viewers have been left in hysterics by a man who made absolutely no attempt to hide his disgust in front of the cameras during the grand reveal on a home makeover show.

    John Geoghegan's face says it all when he opens his eyes to see his bedroom now decorated with yellow floral wallpaper and a blue wardrobe, as his wife Rachel tries very hard to find the positives.

    The car-crash clip from BBC One's Your Home In Their Hands from 2015 saw four decorators compete to create the best design - and it's fair to say if John had anything to do with it, the interior designer responsible for his bedroom would be looking for a new job.

    After Rachel says she "likes the wardrobe", John says: "Nah, it's too much. For me it's too busy. I wouldn't have done anything like it and I don't like it.

    "You're supposed to be able to go to sleep in a bedroom and it's like a kids' play area.

    "I think it looks horrendous, it doesn't look anything like a bedroom. So sorry, but it's a big thumbs down from me.

    "It's hideous. I think it's even too much for Rachel if she was to tell the truth."

    As presenter Celia Sawyer awkwardly tries to get his wife on side, John quickly adds: "It's rank. I don't like it at all. Definitely not."

    Asking if they will keep the room with the new design, John states "not for long" and says his message for the designer would simply be: "Don't touch the other room."

    The moment of TV gold has been viewed almost one million times after being tweeted by @Plinketyplink2, with the caption: "Still the best reaction to a house makeover ever."

    And to be fair to John, pretty much everyone else was in agreement.

    One said: "If you use that wallpaper, the rest of the room should be as plain as possible. It just looks like the designed vomited up every idea they had."

    A second wrote: "Poor woman clearly hated the room & was fighting back tears yet the presenter was badgering her to speak positively about having a bedroom where the fabric fairy had been sick."

    It looks like other episodes went in a fairly similar direction with a viewer saying: "Im beginning to think its a prank show after watching another. Its called Your Home in Their Hands. The hands of maniacs by the looks of it."

    Time to order the boxset then.

    Continued here:
    Man's brutal assessment of 'rank' home makeover labelled best reaction ever - Mirror Online

    Interior decorator Desiree Busnelli: It’s been an amazing journey, from my association with B&B Italia to establishing Jechijo Bespoke Design -… - September 4, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    From being a nurse to a luxury lifestyle, and decor consultant, Desirees eye for fine luxury and design never left sight. Heres a sneak peek into her journey from traveling around the world for collaborations with renowned designers, and to launching her own company.

    Doing what she loves

    It certainly was a pursuit of happiness for Desiree Busnelli, as she overcame one challenge after another, but never gave up. Busnelli battled a life-changing stomach surgery in 2007, which left her in a body cast for over four months. Determined to be resilient, she made this a turning point in her life and chose to pursue her dreams of becoming a luxury consultant finally.

    As she dived into designing, Desiree already had experience in real estate and knew that this would help her progress. As children, we were five girls, and I was the oldest daughter. As I grew, I was fascinated with exquisite things. My grandma, Kathleen Leavitt, who also was an interior designer, would take me along to her showroom in Bellevue, Washington. At just ten years old, I was awestruck with the luxury street of dreams, and simple things like elegant, modern bathroom setups. This interest to explore opulence stayed and grew as I traveled more and developed a worldly sense of culture.

    Never, say never

    If being an entrepreneur is tough, being a woman entrepreneur is double the challenge. Being a stay at home mom, and juggling responsibilities, Desiree made sure to embrace all the roles before her. Working alongside the elite CEO, Emanuele Busnelli, and his team of B&B Italia over the last decade, Desiree was able to nourish her passion for fine aesthetics and charming decor. After years of persistence, I developed the expertise required for chic and contemporary designing. I strongly believe that nothing happens overnight, and it takes eight to ten years of hard work if you are aiming at becoming the best.

    B&B Italia went over to design sophisticated hotels around the world. And soon, Busnelli independently founded the JECHIJO Bespoke Design Company in the suburbs of Milan, Italy.

    If you want to fly, give up everything that weighs you down and march towards your dreams. It is very important that you enjoy and love what you do every day. Im a realist, and I constantly ask myself if what Im doing makes me feel good and if I can do it every day. What keeps me going is to try and make people happy by creating a positive space either by knocking down dormant walls or by building vibrant new walls.

    The world could possibly never get enough of inspiring women like Desiree Busnelli, who have followed their dreams. Despite being a high-end lifestyle consultant, Desiree is rooted and does her best for the community. Through her charitable collaborations with organizations like Miracle Babies, Voss World, and similar, she is a constant source of hope and positivity.Opinions expressed here are the opinions of the author. Influencive does not endorse or review brands mentioned; does not and can not investigate relationships with brands, products, and people mentioned and is up to the author to disclose. VIP Contributors and Contributors, amongst other accounts and articles, are professional fee-based.

    The DN News Desk reports on information from all around the globe. The desk puts the spotlight on personalities and businesses across various verticals that have an influence on their industry.

    Published September 2, 2020

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    Interior decorator Desiree Busnelli: It's been an amazing journey, from my association with B&B Italia to establishing Jechijo Bespoke Design -...

    Everything to Know About Scale and Proportion in Design – - September 1, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Alexa Hampton @alexahamptoninc

    Lauren Tamaki

    You know when you see something that just looks right, but you cant put your finger on why? Chances are it has to do with its scaleand more often than not proportions influenced by classical architecture, says Alexa Hampton, who built a foundational knowledge of such buildings while traveling with her father, the legendary American decorator Mark Hampton. But this concept isnt just something from the history books: Its built around function.

    If you dig back into why things are the way they are, its all about the sizing of people," explains Hampton. For example: "The reason why I like sconces at five foot six off the ground, is because that is generally where eyeballs are," she says.

    The general consistency in human size has resulted in a sort of template for design that has existed across generations and continents. Many of the lessons of proportion Hampton cites date back to classical antiquity. Understanding classical decor is a lot like the idea that modern dancers must first learn balletits about grasping the foundations of any art form, which empowers you to employ them in new combinations. "As Julie Andrews said, once you know the notes to sing, you can sing anything," Hampton says.

    So how to learn those notes? Well, "the easiest education you can get in design is to look at classical architecture," Hampton urges. "Look at Buckingham Palace or Gothic architecture or Russian palaces. The more you look, the more youll understand it."

    To go along with these observations, Hampton offers some notes. Think of this as your study guide, and once you read it, go back and look at some of your favorite buildings and spacesit just may make you see them in a whole new light.

    As Hampton said, it's all based on the human forma template that won't change, whether you're in a grand estate or a modest apartment. And it's worth keeping that in mind when you decorate: "I don't actually believe that furniture should scale up if your room is biggerI think that's ridiculous," Hampton says. "It should all be scaled to the human body."

    "Sometimes people get these huge homes and they think they have to scale up," says the designer. "They put the pictures too high and the furniture far apart, and it just looks off."

    Instead of scaling up for a larger space, Hampton suggests creating multiple groupings of human-scaled furniture within it.

    Of course, sizing based off of humans is inherently logical. "There's always a vein of practicality running through the whole process," says Hampton of her interior design work. This concept is a good one to fall back on when you're feeling unsure. What height should your countertops be? Probably just above your waist, so you can easily work at them while standing. How big should a rug in your bedroom be? Wide enough for you to set your feet down on it when climbing out of bed. Where should you hang a painting? Roughly at eye level so you can see it. Once you begin approaching design in these terms, you realize its "rules" are less strict barriers and more sensible

    "One of the central ways I think to be more fluid about proportion is to have pieces of many different proportions in a room," Hampton says. "If you have all furniture of the same size, there's no rhythm, there's no balance movement, it's very static."

    But still, she advises, the central barometer should beyou guessed itthe human form. "Once you establish that framework, you can go above and below, or that through line, go up and below it," she says. "But it all is tethered to that line."

    That line, in fact, is what connects pieces of smaller and larger scales. Speaking by phone from a room her father decorated, Hampton says, "This room has a really large sofa, and then these tiny slipper chairs. And if I were to just show these chairs and this sofa to a client, they would think I was crazy. But it's not in a vacuum: It has pieces of other sizes connecting them. And those together make it scaled both to the room and to the human body."

    Not only do you want proportional variation in your furniture, you want it in your layout. In a large room, break the footprint into sections with rugs of varying sizes. Oftentimes you want a really big rug to amplify and to connect the spaces," Hampton says. "But then you might put a smaller rug under the coffee table and part of the sofa, to punctuate that space as a destination of its own."

    This will also direct the flow of a room: "You need to think of traffic patterns," says Hampton. "There needs to be a path from the opening into the room to the door going outside." These pathways can be dictated both by furniture placement and rug outlines. "For example, you can't have the edge of a rug be your path," Hampton says. "Your path is either covered by rug, or it's not covered by rug." If you are decorating a room that connects two other rooms, serving as a kind of transitional space, make sure there is a clear path from one door to the other.

    As Hampton says, the more you look at your surroundings (or books and magazines featuring great interiors), the better you'll come to understand what worksand what doesn't. The designer recalls one instance as a teenager that confirmed the importance of education by seeing.

    "Right after I graduated from college, my father was supposed to go on this trip to Italy with the American Academy in Rome," she recalls. "And at the last minute, he couldn'tso my mother and I went. I was totally thrilled." Their companions on the trip were a group of top architects, designers, and artists.

    "One day, I found myself standing next to Michael Graves, and we were on this hillside overlooking a building," Hampton recalls. "And he said to me, 'Can you tell me what's wrong with that house?' What a question to be asked by a genius in his field," Hampton says. "I was terrified."

    "My mind was racing, and I finally said, 'there are four windows on that side and there should be five,'" she recalls. Graves nodded "and I ran away as fast as I could," laughs Hampton.

    "I've thought a lot about this story over the years. And at the end of the day I think it wasn't luckit was just, if you look enough and see enough, eventually, you can tell if something's off."

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    Half of Brits consider career change with medical professions, gardening and teaching topping list of – The Sun - September 1, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    ALMOST half of Brits are considering a change of career - with medical professions, landscape gardening and teaching topping the list of preferred industries.

    A survey of 2,000 adults revealed this years events had left two-thirds thinking life is too short to be working in a job they hate.


    This could mean a shift in careers for millions, with a fifth (21 per cent) admitting they dont enjoy their job and 42 per cent seriously considering a change in profession.

    Three in 10 (31 per cent) of those polled by the National Lottery said lockdown had made them realise how important a good work-life balance is.

    The desire to work in a traditional office role has gone out of the window, with 23 per cent considering a medical career, 12 per cent saying theyd love to be a gardener and 11 per cent wanting to retrain as a teacher.

    One in 10 said theyd like to start again as a chef or baker, eight per cent would now like to join the charity sector, and one in twenty (six per cent) have spent so much time online that they now want to become a social media influencer.

    The National Lottery carried out the research ahead of tonights EuroMillions rollover draw - where an estimated 126 million jackpot is up for grabs.

    Despite the life-changing sums won on the lottery, 22 per cent of Lottery millionaires have chosen to carry on working by retraining for a new career in an industry theyre more passionate about.

    The survey revealed just three in 10 Brits would give up working if they won the lottery, with 36 per cent learning a new trade.

    When asked what role theyd take on if they scooped a big prize, 16 per cent said theyd train to be a pilot while 13 per cent said theyd like to learn how to be a florist.

    Barbara Derry-McClellan is one of the lucky winners to quit their unfulfilling job to start a new career after she scooped the 2.3 million Lotto Jackpot in 2000.

    She didnt want to sit at home all day so, two years later, followed her passion and started her own florist shop.

    Eighteen years later, Barbara and her husband Ian own both a flower shop, Pinks of Hazlemere, and run a florist wholesale business supplying to flower shops and floral artists across the UK.

    She said: I hated my job at a courier company, it was so boring and unfulfilling.

    I didnt really have any other skills apart from being good at talking to customers but I did think my mum (a florist) was super talented and that Id love to be able to do what she did.


    Medical ProfessionalGardenerTeacherChef/BakerDecorator/Interior DesignerCharity Worker/VolunteerFloristCare WorkerPhotographerDelivery DriverPersonal TrainerShop AssistanYouTube StarNovelistCounsellor/TherapistSocial Media InfluencerPoliticianVideo CreatorMusicianFilm Maker

    The National Lottery win gave me that chance to try my hand at flower arranging and I have loved every minute, first working in the shops and now supplying other flower businesses direct.

    It can be incredibly busy and hard work, especially on big occasions like Mother's Day and Valentines but I find it really rewarding.

    I probably wouldnt have made the leap if it hadnt been for the Lotto win and now Im surrounded by beautiful blooms everyday what more could a girl ask for?

    Three quarters (78 per cent) of those surveyed said the events of 2020 had made them reconsider their lifestyle and priorities.

    Two thirds (66 per cent) have pledged to become healthier, 45 per cent want to spend more time with their loved ones, and 32 per cent are committed to travelling the world, as soon as its safe to do so.

    Andy Carter, Camelots senior winners advisor, added: 2020 seems to have left many of us wanting more from our jobs, thinking about what our next career move might be or jacking it all in to do something that we really love.

    Our passion for gardening and cooking in lockdown and months of home-schooling has clearly inspired the nation to consider a career overhaul and realise the importance of job satisfaction.

    The importance of our careers doesnt appear to change even after a lottery win, with only a number of the people looking to quit their jobs if they get lucky.

    HOMESICK HARRYHarry 'upset' he can't go to Balmoral with Wills & Kate but Meg's 'too busy'


    DJ DEADAward-winning 'I Like To Move It' DJ Erick Morillo found dead aged 49


    COVID ALERTGlasgow lockdown as half a million BANNED from meeting other households


    TRAGIC DISCOVERYCops searching for missing girl,15, who vanished two days ago find body

    ASDA OUTBREAKAsda corona outbreak as 8 staff get bug after 'shoppers let in without masks'

    NO CRIMEDodging TV licence could be decriminalised next month in wake of Proms row

    Over half of National Lottery winners still work in some capacity with many starting their own business after their win, turning their hand to floristry, hairdressing we even have a winner thats invented their own spicy sauce.

    Tonights EuroMillions draw is a rollover with an estimated 126 million jackpot up for grabs.

    Players can check their tickets online at, via the National Lottery app or in their local store.

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    Half of Brits consider career change with medical professions, gardening and teaching topping list of - The Sun

    40 of the Best Home Decor Stores in America – Architectural Digest - August 31, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Ceylon et Cie, Dallas

    AD100 designer Michelle Nussbaumer houses a treasure trove of vintage and antique finds from the furthest reaches of the globe in her Dallas design district warehouse and shop. Complementing the exuberant menagerie of pieces is Nussbaumers fabric collection with Clarence House, as well as a line of plaster furniture and lighting.

    Ceylon et Cie.

    Paloma & Co., Houston

    Offering a dose of cofounders Paloma Contreras and Devon Liedtkes timeless style, the concept space displays work by emerging artists, global finds, and colorful tabletop items and gifts. We are constantly adding new antique and vintage finds to our mix, Contreras says.

    Paloma & Co.

    Moxie, Houston

    Founded by designer Dennis Brackeen and located in the Upper Kirby shopping district, Moxie is a go-to source for high-end antiques, vintage modern furnishings, lighting, and decorative accessories. Last year, Moxie expanded into an 8,500-square-foot showroom that became available next door.


    Dressing Room Interiors Studio, Charlotte, North Carolina

    For a curated selection of vintage furnishings, locals seek out Ariene Betheas shop. Many pieces have been refurbished and updated with new colors and often graphic patterns before being displayed. Global wares and accessories are also scattered throughout, as are original artworks by local creatives.

    Dressing Room Interiors Studio.

    Mitchell Hill, Charleston, South Carolina

    Designers Michael Mitchell and Tyler Hill recently opened their own multilevel space in Charlestons design district, which is home to top brands for the region including Arteriors, Farrow & Ball, and Julian Chichester. The duos twisted traditional style is on display throughout, and designers and consumers alike are encouraged to drop in for inspiration.

    Mitchell Hill.

    Casa Gusto, Palm Beach, Florida

    During this years Kips Bay Palm Beach celebrations, AD100 designer Alex Papachristidis declared Casa Gusto one of the most stylish stores Ive been to in years on Instagram. Helmed by Cris Briger and Charles Peed, this Palm Beach destination specializes in 18th- and 19th-century furnishings as well as new additions, such as a series of papier-mch classical busts and hand-colored prints in custom-painted mats and frames.

    Casa Gusto.

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    40 of the Best Home Decor Stores in America - Architectural Digest

    The Obamas Re-Invented Entertaining at the White House – - August 31, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Were it not for the 22nd Amendment, which limits presidents to two terms, we would now almost certainly be reflecting on the final months of Barack Obamas presidency, its historic resonances and forward-looking ideals. Its a soothing reverie, and one that can, blessedly, come to life as you turn the pages of a lavish new book by the Obamas decorator.

    Michael S. Smiths Designing History (Rizzoli, written with Margaret Russell) is by far the most comprehensive illustrated record of the executive mansion and an engaging account of Smiths deep dive into the history of the White House, as he helped the Obamas update the stolid mansion with a more contemporary and open aesthetic, easing the burdens of a young first family living in the glare of history.

    Not since the Kennedys has a family had such a transformative effect on the White House.

    With the Obamas in residence, the house of the people became a place to entertain in a more casual manner, which fit their personal style. Glittering parties were, however, part of the program, naturally, and Smith recalls events that included everyone from Aretha Franklin to Lin-Manuel Miranda, who previewed what would become a number from Hamilton.


    Most institutions are highly resistant to change, and there was a strong sense in America that if you broke tradition, the dignity of the presidency itself was being assaulted, Smith writes.

    The Obamas never accepted that notion. Being conventional wasnt their style, and they recognized their ability to bridge the formality of the building with relevance and accessibility for all.

    This premise served as a guide rail for Smiths close collaboration with Michelle Obama, and together they brought about the most thorough rethinking of the important state and family rooms since the landmark restoration by Jacqueline Kennedy in the early 1960s. By adding contemporary art to these monumental spaces, Smith counterbalanced the sense of history. And not since the Kennedys had there been a family that had such a trailblazing, transformative effect on the White House, he writes.

    The Yellow Oval Room in particular captures the Obamas looser but no less dignified way of entertaining. Once Franklin D. Roosevelts private study, Kennedy, in collaboration with decorator Stphane Boudin, reimagined it as one of the most beautiful and romantic places in the White House, Smith writes.

    White House Photo / Alamy Stock Photo

    Peter SouzaAlamy

    Nancy Reagan also favored the Yellow Oval, and she gave Smith tips on where to place the furniture in a series of late night calls, one of which lasted four hours. The Obamas loved the drama of its views across the South Lawn to the Washington Monument, and they went with a less formal floor plan, with walls in the Virginia-born English decorator Nancy Lancasters buttah yellow color and graced with works by Barnett Newman and Alice Neel, as well as two Czannes from the White House collection.

    Designing History: The Extraordinary Art & Style of the Obama White House


    On the state floor of the mansion, which is mostly open to the public for tours, the Old Family Dining Room has long been the most private chamber. Its far more intimate than the neighboring State Dining Room, yet still imposing, so Smith again turned to contemporary art to create a groundbreaking aesthetic. Where somber 19th-century portraits and landscapes once dominated, the Obamas hung works by Robert Rauschenberg and Josef Albers.

    This room, the scene of Eleanor Roosevelts Sunday scrambled egg dinners, became the setting for President Obamas official luncheons and, in another White House first, the annual Passover Seder. It was also, Smith notes, for the first time included on the White House tour, at the Obamas request.

    The longest-surviving architectural interior in the White House is the wood-paneled State Dining Room, which was designed for Theodore Roosevelt by Charles McKim and once featured mounted hunting trophies. Smith gave the room a refreshing, Kennedyesque chalky white look: white coffered walls punctuated by straight-falling curtains with a Kailua Blue accent inspired by the waters of the presidents home state.


    The designer marveled that the room had rarely been used in recent times (these days, state dinners are often held in tents on the South Lawn), in part because the Teddy Rooseveltera chairs are practically impossible to move. Smith solved the problem with lighter mahogany reproductions, which still surround the dining table. He notes that the chairs fit Michelle Obamas considerate mandate that any change must improve the house for the future.

    The change she requested that didnt work out well, at least at first, was decking out the Truman Balcony, which overlooks the South Lawn, with comfortable furniture and hurricane lamps. The lamps kept imploding, and we couldnt figure out why, Smith says. Eventually we figured out that it was the air pressure from Marine One landing just yards away. They replaced them with plexiglass lamps, a solution that was sensible and elegant, just like the Obamas.

    This story appears in the September 2020 issue of Town & Country. SUBSCRIBE NOW

    Matt Tyrnauer is a writer and director. His docuseries The Reagans will air on Showtime later this year.

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    The Obamas Re-Invented Entertaining at the White House -

    Faranaaz Veriava: Always ready to take on the good fight – Daily Maverick - August 31, 2020 by Mr HomeBuilder

    Our roots plug into the soil of our origin stories, deep into the fertile grounds of heritage, family and values the ones we keep and the ones we eventually show the middle finger to.

    Faranaaz Veriava is propped up against her purple plush headboard chatting via Skype. She jokes about being an interior decorator in another life; about walking away from a cushy corporate law offer; and the damn fine feeling of taking on bad guys and winning.

    She turned out to be a human rights lawyer starting her career at Idasa (Institute for Democratic Alternatives in South Africa) and working at the Human Rights Commission before spending some time at the Johannesburg Bar. Today shes head of the education programme at SECTION27, the public interest law centre.

    Together with Equal Education, SECTION27 brought and won a legal challenge in July to compel the Department of Basic Education to continue with the Schools Nutrition programme suspended during Covid-19 lockdown. Governments decision came with the shameful cost of thousands of children going hungry.

    It was the most painful case to work on because nothing is worse than letting a child go hungry, says the woman who also worked on justice for five-year-old Michael Komape, who drowned in a pit toilet at his school in Seshego, Limpopo in 2014.

    That these cases stick in the public consciousness is the point for Veriava. Her outrage turns to drive and then, as a self-confessed A-type personality, she goes into high gear building legal cases and strategy for broad impact. She insists on resonance beyond a courtroom or a ruling. It should feel like Michael was every South Africans son; everybodys little brother.

    Michael would have been the same age as my youngest son Reza; I never forget that, she says.

    Veriavas story of becoming a fighter and defender for human rights though begins long before she was. Her roots are tangled up in a family story of political activist history and a tradition of public service. Its also a story of family rupture, sacrifice and confronting the inevitable flaws of beings human. Veriava claims all these histories. Struggle against injustice has given her an internal compass, and surrender to the certainty of human frailties has given her empathy.

    I want my boys to understand that who they are in the world does not necessarily make them better, and if theyre better at some things its because theyve had different opportunities, she says.

    When I was about 11-years-old my father, a public health doctor, was arrested under the state of emergency laws and detained at Modderbee Prison. I remember visiting him in prison and crying thinking he would be killed because it was just a few years earlier in 1977 that Steve Biko had been killed and my father was among the people demanding the doctors who attended to Biko be sanctioned, she says.

    Two years earlier her parents had also got divorced. It meant moving from Lenasia to Laudium to be raised by her single mom and aunt. There taught her independence and hard work but there would be labels: daughter of a divorcee; the daughter of political activist; and being secular born into a Muslim community.

    Being an outsider though was a super power of perspective. She could get over needing to pray five times a day to fit in with my Muslim friends at school. She would also grow to recognise complexity and shortcomings in her parents and the adults in her family. They were the imperfectly perfect of just being human, heroes too to her.

    At Wits University studying law and politics were magnets. So was student politics of the late-80s and the man who would become her husband, Kenneth Creamer. He is a publisher, economics lecturer and member of the presidential economics advisory council.

    The relationship would be love, but more labels and lessons would follow. They are an inter-racial couple with different religious and class backgrounds. In the beginning, they made concessions like living together but provinces away from family and expectation. They even settled for a fusion wedding combining religious rites.

    She says: We got together in that magical year of 1994. We believed in the same politics and values of a non-racist and non-sexist world. Maybe we were nave thinking we were going to change the world.

    Now in the middle of her life, she acknowledges that things have become more complicated. Identity politics of today, like the Black Consciousness Movement, are critical to get over an inferiority complex, to recognise oppression but it has to move beyond this and it needs to overcome opportunistic exploitation, she says.

    Complicated is not the moment to look away though. Its not the time to shrink from personal power, responsibility or action, she says.

    The fight for her is still about upholding values that build a strong state; one that delivers better quality public services. Its also to push back against the erosion of civil liberties and human rights. She keeps telling this to her boys Adam (15) and Reza (11), the law students she teaches and SECTION27 research interns she mentors.

    I want my boys to understand that who they are in the world does not necessarily make them better, and if theyre better at some things its because theyve had different opportunities, she says.

    She leaves them with heavy things to think about but its to shape them, not burden them. She adds that she anyway wins hands down as cooler of the boys two parents from my R&B and jazz music, to fashion or anything cool, she says with a laugh. She concedes though that shes rubbish at getting excited about sports.

    But the family may take walks together. Nature is her freedom, she says, religion almost. And its trees in particular that shes drawn too. Theres a kindred connection, or a metaphor at the least: growing from roots grounded in promise to release in canopies of fulfilled potential; and always the sure daring to stand firm. DM

    Five Questions for Faranaaz Veriava

    What image is on your phones home screen?

    Its a photo of my boys. In the photo Adam is four and half, hes wearing a dashiki and hes holding his brother Reza who was four months old at the time. Both boys are also wearing garlands we made for spring day; its a beautiful pic.

    What would you spend your last R100 on?

    A book, it would probably have to be second-hand one at R100.

    Whats the worst piece of advice you ever took?

    Thats easy behave like a lady.

    The thing you wish you learnt earlier on in your life?

    I was submissive for too long. As a young black female advocate at the Johnnesburg Bar I tolerated intimation and exclusion and allowed it to make me small; I wish I came into my own confidence and power sooner.

    Three books that have changed your life

    Books have been my security blanket all my life. My three book are To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee ; Animal Farm by George Orwell; and Nervous Conditions by Tsitsi Dangaremba.

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    Faranaaz Veriava: Always ready to take on the good fight - Daily Maverick

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