‘Home Town’ strong with United Way Women’s Leadership Council | Lifestyles | dailycitizen.news

It was a huge honor and pleasure to be a part of this wonderful and inspiring luncheon with HGTV’s Erin & Ben Napier, hosted by United Way Women’s Leadership Council…Congratulations and thank yous go out to Amanda Burt, Andrea Ross, Dixie Kinnard, Lynn Whitworth, Brenda Knowles and all the other talented people involved in coordinating and planning the day! I am so proud of #MYHOMETOWN Dalton, Georgia.

United Way of Northwest Georgia’s Women’s Leadership Council held its sixth annual Spring Symposium on April 18 at Walnut Hill Farm. Erin and Ben Napier from HGTV’s “Home Town”
— Read on www.dailycitizen.news/content/tncms/live/

United Way of Northwest Georgia’s Women’s Leadership Council held its sixth annual Spring Symposium on April 18 at Walnut Hill Farm. Erin and Ben Napier from HGTV’s “Home Town” were the featured speakers.

United Way Board Member Emily Finkell of Emily Morrow Home facilitated the event with 250 in attendance. Patti Renz, United Way board member and realtor at Coldwell Banker Kinard Realty, and Marianne Murry, United Way Volunteer Center Council member and director of marketing at Engineered Floors, shared their journey to join United Way’s Women’s Leadership Council.

Erin and Ben Napier live and restore homes in small town Mississippi. When they aren’t renovating homes, the couple and four of their best friends sell heirloom wares and durable goods at their made in the USA shop, Laurel Mercantile Co. Erin and Ben reside in Laurel, Miss., believing quality of life is best in a small town.

United Way of Northwest Georgia’s Women’s Leadership Council invited the Napiers to share their passion for revitalizing small towns and products made in America. Their dedication to improving their home town is perfectly aligned with United Way’s commitment to building a better community and enhancing quality of life.

Erin and Ben’s journey to becoming stars of their HGTV show was a bit of an accident as they were discovered on Instagram. However, their commitment to making their hometown of Laurel a great place to live was very intentional. When they began sharing the story of Laurel, they realized that there were a lot of perceived problems that didn’t really exist. It was really all about perception, and perception can be changed. Erin stated, “I started painting this picture of Laurel the way I saw it, as a beautiful town to live and raise a family in.” She began sharing photos of the exciting things they were doing in Laurel, and people took notice. Eventually, the Napiers were approached about hosting a show on HGTV and the rest is history.

“The discussion led by Emily Finkell was perfect for our community as we look to the future and seek ways to make our community a better place and more appealing for both residents and prospective residents,” United Way President Amanda Burt said. “The Napiers shared many great truths that spoke to our community. Their home town of Laurel, Miss., evolved because of the industry, much like our own community. They are strong advocates of American manufacturing and shared that anyone who is serious about revitalizing small towns has to be serious about American manufacturing. ”

The Napiers made sure to explain that change doesn’t happen overnight. They shared that an overnight success takes 10 years. Part of that, they explained, is looking at where you want to be in three to four years and listening to and only saying yes to things that will get you there.

There is a role for everyone to play. The revitalization of their town took many people with very different backgrounds and talents working together to accomplish their shared goal of making their town great. It also takes boldness. Erin mentioned that one of her favorite quotes is “The ones who say it can’t be fixed are the ones who need to get out of the way.” Their entire message boils down to this: we are the ones who decide how our community looks. As Finkell said, “We are all ambassadors for our hometown.”

This year’s Spring Symposium would not have been possible without generous sponsors. United Way thanks the following sponsors:

Gold Level

• Engineered Floors

• Debbie Macon

• Shaw Industries Women’s Innovation Network

• Textile Rubber and Chemical Co. Inc.

Silver Level

• Coldwell Banker Kinard Realty

• Emily Morrow Home

• Dixie Kinard

• Kim L. Woods Construction Inc.

• Simply Outrageous

• Walnut Hill Farm

• The Yellow Bird

For more information on United Way’s Women’s Leadership Council contact amy.ross@ourunitedway.org or call (706) 876-2552


As I’m preparing to
celebrate my 11th year anniversary of surviving Breast Cancer by
going on a photo safari, I find myself poring over images and
articles on Eastern Africa. This travel has been at the top of my
bucket list for ages and finally I’m finding the time to make the
trip. My expectations are great and I’m certain that I’ll return
with rich impressions from the wild-ness and beauty of the animals,
the land and the warmth of the people. Thinking over history and my
limited view of what “Africa” is, I can’t help but think of one of
my favorite movies, “Out of Africa”, favrorite stores, Banana
Republic. Consider today all of the styles that have borrowed
elements straight from actual “safari attire” as well as other
iconic fashion and interior designers who infused their look with
“safari campsite” looks, but done so on a very luxurious scale. I’m
sharing some images from the things that have caught my eye and
look forward to sharing my travel photos in my next blog. One thing
that is for certain, I will return permanently changed and my
outlook on the world improved from this time out of the office.
It’s going to be a great source of product ideas, color stories as
well as interior design concepts that, like safari living, have to
be versatile, durable, comfortable and unwavering in style. Check
out my Pinterest board, “SAFARI AWAY” for my
visuals. http://www.pinterest.com/emilykmorrow/safari-away/
Be well and stay tuned! Hugs, Emily



http://www.pinterest.com/emilykmorrow/safari-away/out of africa 1




Emily Kiker Morrow on Design & Color Trends, today and yet to come

Emily Kiker Morrow on Design & Color Trends, today and yet to come

This past week I had the pleasure of serving on a panel with the best and brightest minds in color and design known as Global ColorMix. As to be expected, the panelists had diverse backgrounds from paper, window coverings, paint, color communications and cabinets…not to mention my own floor covering and interior design point of view. What I’ve walked away with is the confirmation that as different as we all are, our creative minds and eye for color and design are keenly watching the same things.
Oftentimes I’m asked “How do you know???…How do you know that a color or a design trend is coming…or that it will last?”…(they’re probably imagining us holding a sealed envelope to our heads like Johnny Carson did as the “Amazing Karnak” with all of the answers inside).
I can best summarize it as “innate and informed intuition”…if you read Malcolm Gladwell’s’ book “Blink”, you’ll understand what I’m referring to when I suggest that anyone who’s been “practicing” something for over 10,000 hours ‘just knows’ without overthinking the subject and ultimately outperforms their peers consistently. Read these excerpts from the book and you’ll better understand what I’m saying.

+“When we become expert in something, our tastes grow more esoteric and complex.” …
“our world requires that decisions be sourced and footnoted, and if we say how we feel, we must also be prepared to elaborate on why we feel that way…+We need to respect the fact that it is possible to know without knowing why we know and accept that – sometimes – we’re better off that way.” …+“Did they know why they knew? Not at all. But they Knew!”
― Malcolm Gladwell, Blink: The Power of Thinking without Thinking

Now to the more fun part…what’s the summary of my current research as we near the last quarter of 2013, after having traveled through Italy, Germany, France, England, Canada and China? For starters, plan on having the “Gray Trend” around for quite some time…it’s being shown and featured in many “major commitment” pieces at all of the best furniture and design shows around the world, it’s still being featured in Runway Fashion, although paired with bright pops of color. Gray is in every product segment and is the frequent topic of conversation among interior designers, architects and product designers…”When is the gray trend going away?…” Beyond the subject of “gray”, we’re going to continue to see animal prints although they’ve become “toned down” to the taupe side of animal prints. See my image of the Cole Haan shoes which I purchased at Macy’s in NYC last week. According to the super helpful shoe associate, the style on the left, the taupe-black print (my pair) is selling faster than they can inventory them while the pair on the right, an orange-rust color, isn’t moving at all. The shoe salesman didn’t understand “why?” …but fortunately for him, I was able to tell him… the cooler (taupe and black) leopard print will go with everything found in ladies’ fashion today, black, brown, midnight blue, gray and taupe…while the warmer (rust and black) will probably be perfect in a year or two. Fashion is usually a step or two ahead of interiors but not by a big step. I love watching for the changes in the market place just as a meteorologist watches the doppler radar and barometers.

Obviously this is one of my favorite subjects and could go on and on, but I won’t…but please know there’s more to come next week. Meanwhile, let me know what you’re seeing in your part of the world!
Big Hugs!! Emily

Emily Kiker Morrow: Perfect English ~ English design, that is…why we love it!

What is it that we all love about “English” design? Is it their “English way” of making “clutter” look elegant? Layered rugs, stacked books, plump down pillows and decadently rich leathers…all of these details are what I associate with “classic” english interiors. Not to say that we aren’t fascinated with the arrival of Prince George Alexander Louis or what The Duchess of Cambridge will be wearing…we are…but who doesn’t appreciate the look and feel of “English” homes. They feel curated…in the best sense of the word. Mark Gillette Interior Design: Press coverage - English Home August 2012

English interiors, in my mind, are typically full of natural light and soothing woolish neutrals, not the dark and dreary interiors that one associates with Harry Potter movies. Comfort is key…where bespoke materials are lavishly used. Wood floors and furniture are lovingly cared and have “perfectly patinaed” surfaces. “Reclaimed” wood is a given…although the materials are not dredged out of a tobacco mill or from the bottom of a river, but rather exist exactly as the craftsman intended, in its original location. “Aging in place” has an entirely different meaning when it comes to wood millwork…it’s cared for and respected for generations upon generations.

home of English designer Rose Uniacke

Do we “romaticize” about what we imagine “English” families have in their homes, yes of course. That’s for certain ~ but I do love the “idea” of what we all think and feel “english design” represents. 

(by Plain English Designs - Chelsea Studio)

Stay tuned for more thoughts on English Design as my family and I report back from our trek to England. We plan to squeeze as much beauty and history as we possibly can and bring the memories back to cherish for a lifetime. 

Union Jack

Rustic Sophisticated Design Trends

Rustic Sophisticated Design Trends

Going Against the Grain: The Newest Wood Trends

These days I’m loving the evolution from “overtly rustic” wood and metallic finishes to the more sophisticated and subtle side of things. Walnut and steel blend beautifully in this Ralph Lauren Home “Parquet Ancien” Coffee Table. The table is a great example of what you get when you combine the right elements in just the right way. We have been seeing so much of the drastically scraped and distressed wood surfaces for quite some time and home owners hoping to update their spaces are looking for something that represents the future without being too “nichey”. Smoother surfaces with more grain, subtle face-sawn details, domestically grown and harvested white oaks, clean walnuts, and hickory are the “current” wood species. Zinc or chrome detailing is reminiscent of mid century “automotive or aeronautic” chrome details. Tune in to MadMen on the AMC Network and find yourself carried back in time to the interiors and fashions of the late 60’s. Today we are blending elements from the past that can best be described as “vintage futuristic”. 




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