Q + A With a Design Blogger

HGTV Magazine dropped in on Nicole Gibbons of sohautestyle.com and asked her to complete a style survey.

RX-HGMAG006_Design-Blogger-078-a-4x3

David A. Land

David A. Land


The blogger:
Nicole Gibbons
Her blog: sohautestyle.com
Home base: Harlem, NY
Blog stats: Approximately 25,000 visitors and 95,000 page views a month

HGTV Magazine: Why did you start sohautestyle.com?
Nicole Gibbons: I was visiting family in Michigan over the holidays and needed something to keep me busy. I already read a ton of blogs every day and decided to jump right in. I logged on to Typepad (I've since switched to WordPress, which is easier to customize) and published my first post in January 2008, using a photo of my dream bedroom that I'd saved on my computer.

HGTV Mag: Your current computer:
NG: A 13-inch MacBook Pro.

HGTV Mag: How is your blog different from all the others?
NG: Instead of writing about homes already published in magazines, I use exclusive photographs of designers' spaces that haven't appeared anywhere else.

HGTV Mag: What are three things in your own home that you've blogged about?
NG: My DIY draperies in my living room (I added a Greek key trim to the edges of IKEA panels), my Craigslist dining chairs (I paid $80 for four and revamped them with paint and new fabric), and my bedroom before and after (it took about a year to complete). I love every piece in it. That's something I'd advise anyone: Don't rush. Take your time designing a room.

HGTV Mag: Most unique blog feature:
NG: My "Meet the Assistant" profiles about the people who work behind the scenes with top designers.

HGTV Mag: Most viewed post:
NG: The one about my collaboration with Nate Berkus and Target. We teamed up to create a video to help launch his new home collection there: more than 150 pieces of stylish and super-affordable finds, from rugs and bedding to window treatments and bath stuff.

HGTV Mag: Coolest style trick you learned while blogging:
NG: Layering a dhurrie or cowhide rug on top of a larger sisal rug is a great look. I did this in my living room. Also: Always have accurate measurements for large pieces of furniture and dimensions of doorways -- you'd be surprised how many horror stories I hear from readers about investing in a piece of furniture they can't fit through their door.

HGTV Mag: Favorite site for procrastinating:
NG: Shopstyle.com. I type in the fashion item I'm lusting after and comparison shop. Before I know it, I've spent hours "window shopping" on the Web.

HGTV Mag: What kind of camera do you have?
NG: A Canon EOS Rebel T3i digital SLR, and my iPhone. I'm obsessed with Instagram, but I always take the photos with my iPhone camera first and then upload them to Instagram, rather than using the app's built-in camera. The photos turn out much better, and you can zoom in to focus on details, which you can't do with the app.

HGTV Mag: Best home flash site:
NG: One Kings Lane. It has great brands, and I admire their innovative concepts for sales, like Vintage & Market Finds and Tastemaker Tag Sales. Really fun and inspiring.

HGTV Mag: Three awesome apps:
NG: I love Pulse, an app that lets you browse your favorite news sites and blogs in one spot. I also have Pocket, where you can save online articles to read later. It's great for when I'm on the subway and don't have Internet access. And I use Foodily all the time to collect recipes from different sites and to follow other people with great recipe collections.

HGTV Mag: Which five blogs do you read every day?
NG: Into the Gloss for beauty inspiration; Sincerely Jules because fashion blogger Julie Sariñana has such great style; Mashable to keep up with all the latest tech and social media news; Sketch42 for art and design ideas; and Garance Doré because I love her conversational voice, and her photography is always amazing.

Next Up

Catch Up With Our Blogs

We're serving up the latest news, gorgeous style, crafty DIY projects, clever entertaining tips and more. Consider these your design digests.

Follow Us Everywhere

Join the party! Don't miss HGTV in your favorite social media feeds.