10 December 2013

A New Orleans Vibe Giveaway!

 

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Valorie Hart, The Visual Vamp, in her New Orleans house.

 

One of my favorite blogs is The Visual Vamp – written by Valorie Hart.  Valorie has been writing her blog almost as long as I have and through the years we’ve had some good times commiserating.  Valorie is an effervescent red head – though sometimes her hair is actually lilac!  We are about the same age and I’ve always been in awe of her energy and her ability to tirelessly write.  I like to call her Zelig, named after the famous Woody Allen character who turns up during every important historic event.  Valorie is like that – while she now lives in New Orleans, she previously lived in New York where she either knew everyone from the 70s and 80s or she had worked with them.  Her list of friends and co-workers is nothing if not amazing!!

At times besides interior designing, Valorie was a famous party planner, she was in a rock and roll band, and she was a floral designer – among other vocations.  Oh yes, and she and husband, Alberto Paz are also world famous tango dancers – who give lessons in their shotgun NOLA house when they aren’t competing on the international stage.  WHEW! 

 

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A party that Valorie designed and planned back in her NYC days.

 

So, it was no surprise when Valorie told me she had written a book that was recently published AND she was currently already writing the second one!!!  The first book is called House Proud, which features houses from Louisiana.  The new book will showcase houses in Texas. 

 

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The cover of Valorie’s book – with photographs by Sara Essex Bradley and published by Glitterati, Inc.

 

The book is fun.  It’s filled with beautiful houses and cute houses, large houses and small houses.  There’s something for everyone and every budget.  And there’s something to take home from the book  - at the end of every chapter Valorie writes a list of “takeaways” – ideas from the house for you to use in  your own.

While most houses featured in House Proud aren’t decorated by Valorie- there is a healthy dose that are – including a spread on Valorie’s own house. 

 

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One of my favorite houses in the book is this one in New Orleans designed by Valorie!  I love it – from the persimmon taffeta curtains to the crystal chandelier – it’s so beautiful.

 

 

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And the dining room – with its tree truck table – which she mixed with vintage chairs and a Kelly Wearstler fabric. 

 

 

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The living room – where Valorie mixed in antique furniture with mid century chairs.

 

 

 

 

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This house is another favorite from the book – which was designed by Evelyne Clinton.  What an entry hall with an antique French daybed covered in lilac velvet.  To die for!

 

 

 

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And this dining room is from Evelyne Clinton’s own house, also featured in the book.

 

 

 

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Two matching crystal chandeliers – hang in this New Orleans house.

 

 

Reading the book made me want to show you more of what Valorie has been up to lately.   Her portfolio is loaded with design projects she’s recently finished and articles she’s written – busy as ever!

 

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Valerie recently updated this house – recovering furniture and painting cabinets to bring the décor a bit more up to date for its owners.  Love the Ikat fabric she used on the chairs and pillows.

 

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On either side of the fireplace she had the brown stained cabinets painted a more trendy gray.  And she replaced a large armoire with a bench and mirror.

 

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And I love this runner she used on the stairs, behind the sofa.

 

 

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No one changes their house décor more than Valorie.  Over the years, her house has been redecorated so many times, I couldn’t even begin to count them!  Here is how her dining room recently looked, which I really liked – and figured she would keep it like this for awhile.  But no……

 

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She recently had this brainstorm (after living in the house for years and years) to move the table to the right of the room - which is rather skinny.  With the furniture off centered this way, you can walk around the table, rather than into it!   Instead of chairs – she put upholstered banquettes along the wall and added a wonderful large paper light fixture which really gives the room a sparse, almost Oriental vibe.

 

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Looking down at the banquettes with the pillows placed at the corner.  Love the cowhide on the table – which is a great way to disguise a wood table with a stain you don’t love.

 

AND, to see designer Susannah Salk recreate Valorie’s living room using all Ballard Design products- watch this video – HERE.  Very interesting! 

 

 

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And finally, since I don’t get to decorate for Christmas – I’m excited to show you how Valorie did this year!  She used a Tiffany blue color mixed with orange accents that match her velvet chairs.

 

 

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Here, the tree is set up in her dance studio – which is right outside her living room.  I love the blue theme!

 

 

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In her living room – she wrapped blue pillows like presents 

 

 

 

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And another pillow, wrapped like a present.  Decorating tip: instead of white linen or cotton – Valorie uses white pleather which is very easy to keep pristine.

 

 

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And on her coffee table, along with reindeer and a tiny wreath, she displays spools of velvet ribbon that matches the turquoise tree and presents. 

 

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Last year’s decorations – I love this picture mainly to see how much the room has changed in one year’s time. 

Here’s hoping Valerie and her husband and all our readers have a Merry Christmas and a healthy and happy New Years!

 

The Giveaway!

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For the giveaway, Valorie has graciously allowed there to be TWO winners!!!  Each winner will win one copy of her book, “House Proud.”  To enter the contest – all you have to do is go to House Proud’s facebook page HERE and “Like” it!

Then come back to this blog and leave me a comment saying you want to enter.  Be sure to leave your email address if you are anonymous!

That’s all!

The contest lasts from now until Friday night, December 13th at 11:59 pm.

The book makes great Christmas gifts – to order the book, just click on the picture below:

 

To read The Visual Vamp blog, go HERE.

A huge thank to Valorie Hart for sponsoring this giveaway!!!

 

146 comments:

  1. Dear Joni,
    I love Valorie and her book "House Proud" is full of stunning images.
    No need to enter me, however I did want to give Valorie a shout out!

    xoxo
    Karena
    The Arts by Karena

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  2. Thanks for the opportunity, Joni! Looks like an interesting read. Love her style!

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  3. Do I ever want to enter to win a copy of Valorie Hart's book! She is the best.

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  4. Oh my goodness! This book looks amazing! My husband and I are returning to our house 2500 miles away that we have been away from for the past two years due to my husband's work. I have much to do in the house to make it our home again and this book looks inspirational! Thank you for a chance to win a copy!!!

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  5. What a fab giveaway! I would love to enter tho I hope international entries are accepted? Either way I like her blog as well.

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  6. Thanks for the opportunity to win a copy of this wonderful book.

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  7. Lovely book for this give away--please enter my name.....

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  8. I, too, would like to enter this contest. But I will buy it if I don't win.....
    pbozanich@yahoo.com

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  9. Please enter me in the contest.
    Rra7@hotmail.com

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  10. Please enter me in contest.
    Aliceams@hotmail.com

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  11. I would love to have a chance to win Valorie's lovely book. I am certain many hours could be enjoyed reading it.
    dgmills@tampabay.rr.com

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  12. Looks like Valorie's book will be a lovely read... would love to be entered in the drawing!
    suzqzposson@gmail.com

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  13. I would love to add Valorie's design book to my collection!
    jlevalley99@comcast.net

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  14. Once again, another beautiful post....I would love to have Valorie's book -- such beautiful rooms!
    Thanks,
    Sabrina
    dawdlebythedaffodils@yahoo.com

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  15. I know just the person I'd like to gift this to - that is if I can part with it!

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  16. I adore Valorie! Love seeing her house and it's many changes. I had not seen the latest changes to her dining room. I love all the rooms she's done for others. I didn't know she was working on a book of Texas homes....how fabulous! Of course I've liked House Proud on Facebook!

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  17. Looks like a fun book. Does this giveaway open to international readers?

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  18. I already have Valorie's beautiful book, I think her blog followers are very proud of her!

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  19. I would love to win Valerie's book, I love reading her blog as well!

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  20. I liked the HP book on FB. I would love a beautiful new book. Jo @ Let's Face the Music jamesonvaughn (at) Verizon (dot) net

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  21. I would love to win Valerie's book! Been reading her blog almost as long as I've been reading yours Joni!
    Thanks!
    Sue

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  22. I'm happy to see some of Valorie's work on your blog today and the generous giveaway. Valorie's work is very unique to each client and nothing looks contrived or repetitive. Perhaps that is something that New Orleans style imparts, but it truly takes talent to make it work and Valorie clearly has that.

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  23. I would love to enter the contest especially since I live and love New Orleans, Lois
    lmsinno@hotmail.com

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  24. I looked through "House Proud" at the book store and loved all the beautiful homes and images. I live in New Orleans and would love to have a copy of Valorie's book!
    mdauzat73@gmail.com

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  25. Hi Joanie!

    What a great giveaway! Valorie's designs are always so unique! Love her style! I would love to win a copy of her beautiful book! I did my facebook duties!

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  26. Entered! Thanks for another great giveaway!

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  27. I love her style..thanks for posting this!
    bellaroses84@gmail.com

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  28. This book is beautiful! I would love to enter and win it!! Jarmstrong3@carolina.rr.com

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  29. love the vamps fun posts and the books looks wonderful Joni.

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  30. Fascinating person, fascinating home. I'm sure the book will be more than fascinating as well. Thanks for bringing us this gorgeousness, Joni!

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  31. Wow, such talent. I would love to win this. I liked House Proud, thanks for the offer. tmtm4@comcast.net

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  32. Would love to win this book. Sounds fascinating!

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  33. Hope I win! I would love this book. Jamiep44@gmail.com

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  34. What a beautiful book! Please enter me in the contest!
    Carole Willard
    carolewillard@yahoo.com

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  35. Thanks for the chance to win this book. deb@hildasfurnishings.com

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  36. I loved the the Vamp blog and her decorating is so fun and different. I would love to win and read her book. Please enter this Mississippi girl for a chance to win it. Merry Christmas! ibgardning@yahoo.com

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  37. I liked Valorie's House Proud FB page. Thanks! Sara
    sarapmartin@yahoo.com

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  38. Would love to have this book and will definitely order it if I don't win a copy! bchandler61@yahoo.com

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  39. Thank you Joni.I would like a chance to win the book too! dbowker80@hotmail.com

    Debbie

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  40. Would love a chance to win a copy of the book. Have also gone and 'Liked' the page as well! Thanks!

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  41. I would love a copy of this book! The persimmon taffeta drapes in one of the rooms are beautiful. Hope I win!! alaf@shaw.ca

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  42. I would love to be included in the giveaway. This beautiful book looks like a wonderful add to my Interior Design Library, and I'm happy to have liked The Visual Vamp on Facebook. Thanks for another great giveaway!

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  43. I would be thrilled to win a copy of the Visual Vamp. In the spirit of Christmas, I would give it to my oldest daughter, a budding designer in Brooklyn. Happy Holidays. luckylindyo@aol.com

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  44. Whew! and I thought I had a lot of energy! I would love to enter to win the book, and it would be a wonderful addition to my design library. Her style is quite unique and visually superb. Thanks.

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  45. I love her work! I would be honored to be entered to win the book! Thanks so much for your wonderful blog!

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  46. Would like to say, I love your blog! Valorie brings a beautiful mix of styles and visual interest. Her book would be a wonderful addition.

    Thank you,
    andreaelliott@earthlink.net

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  47. so proud of all of our author bloggers! When's your book, Joni?! Would love a copy.

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  48. Please enter me. Blue & orange is one of my favorite color combos. Since I don't get to decorate for xmas either, I used the colors for my Thankgivingakkah table. I have that velvet ribbon too!

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  49. Happy Holidays !! Drooling over this book !!
    fourms@mchsi.com

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  50. I enjoy reading Valerie's blog and am now a fan on Facebook. I would love to win a copy of her book! Happy Holidays! Kim (alexander2581@att.net)

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  51. I would LOVE to be entered to win a book. Thank you for your beautiful blog and best wishes for a Merry Christmas and Happy, Healthy, Prosperous New Year!

    annmelamed@gmail.com

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  52. Her book looks fantastic! I love the light, white rooms you have shown on your blog post. I would love a copy of this book! Thank you! mheinz@kslaw.com

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  53. I'd love to win this book. Valorie is a rock star. Joni, I would love to see you write a book. I'd be first in line to buy it.

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  54. I've added her book to my "want" list. The rooms and yes the lilac velvet daybed is fabulous! I would love a copy of her book. Thank you for sharing with us, roxanne939@gmail.com

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  55. Thank you for introducing Valorie and her blog to my design addicted self. She seems to be unique and very fun.
    Liz

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  56. Sign me up! tracyfisher418@yahoo.com

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  57. Valoire's designs are amazing and her eye for what inspires - it jumps from the pages. I would love to own her books, and I encourage you to publish, Joni! I would love to see your rooms in a book or two as well! Cathryn

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  58. EYE CANDY! I would love to win this book!

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  59. I would love to own this fascinating book. I really love decorating and she is a pro.
    sandram@wilsonhouston.com

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  60. Fabulous book! I would love to win a copy. brewerdm@mac.com

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  61. Please enter me to win a copy of Valorie's beautiful book.
    winpooh46@gmail.com

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  62. Thanks for turning me on to her blog - I love it!

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  63. Hi Joni! I liked Valorie's FB page and would love to be in the drawing for her fabulous book. Thanks so much for sharing and broadening our design perspectives as usual!~~Donna

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  64. just went to Valorie's facebook page and liked it..now I am in the contest. thank you for introducing me to valorie. xxpeggybraswelldesign.com

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  65. Oh, I need this book. I was pinning the whole time I was reading. I love New Orleans!
    Patty at Home and Lifestyle Design
    http://homeandlifestyledesign.com

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  66. I liked House Proud on fb and would love to win it!

    Laura J
    tjaklitsch@aol.com

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  67. Count me in on the drawing! I "Like" d on FB My e-mail is wwadeiii@gmail.com, aka "Quatorze"

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  68. I "Like"d House Proud on FB and I would love an opportunity to win Valorie's book. Great giveaway!
    Sherry S
    sherry@scurlocksystems.com

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  69. WOW! I,d say "think outside the box" is a motto she lives by! I would love to enjoy her view in her book. janiebolton@comcast.net

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  70. I reactivated my FB page just so I could enter this giveaway because I want this book. I would also like to ask Miz V where she got those pillows with the NOLA neighborhoods, etc.

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  71. Just moved to Houston and I am loving your style. Please enter me for the giveaway so that I may decorate my house in style! gnwells88@gmail.com

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  72. I got so many great ideas just from this post! I'm glad you connected us with Valorie. So inspirational!!

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  73. Valerie's book looks fascinating and I loved seeing all her ideas. I would love to win her book to help start out the new year! jtuzzolino@sohospaces.net

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  74. Please consider me for your giveaway! I would love to have Valerie's decorating talent rub off on me....But even more her talent for tango! Vanna

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  75. I would love to win this new orleans treasure! Angeladerbes@aol.com

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  76. Well, went immediately to Amazon.com to order this book but it doesn't appear to be available on Amazon so I guess I'll just have to try and win it! Love love love your blog, thank you!! abreck@swbell.net

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  77. Hm, it is on Amazon. doh. And you even have a link! So I'm going to buy it and if I win a copy someone will get a very nice Christmas gift! Joan abreck@swbell.net

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  78. Would love to win that beautiful book! XOXOXO!

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  79. I liked House Proud! Would love to win this beautiful book!!!
    Simona
    srhellinger@hotmail.com

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  80. Love Valorie and her blog. Would love to win the book.

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  81. Thank you for the sneak peek. Please enter me :)

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  82. Dear Joni,

    Thanks for the wonderful blog. I hope to win Valorie's book- she has elegant taste.
    Best,
    Trudi R.

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  83. JONI
    ENTER ME TOO-- ALONG WITH THE 10000000000000OTHERS WHO WOULD LOVE TO HAVE HER BOOK!!
    vaughanjustice@gmail.com

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  84. Please enter me in the contest for Valorie's book! I "liked" her Facebook book page.
    Thanks!
    30A Edition susan.zagorski@gmail.com

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  85. Hi Joni,
    I like it on FB! I can't wait to get my hands on this book! Love Valoroes style!
    Sharon
    one2styleyou@gmail.com

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  86. Would love to peruse this over the holidays!

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  87. Hello Joni:
    I liked on FB, and I love to entered to win the book.
    casilda_canino@hotmail.com

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  88. I "liked", no make that "loved" the intro you did on this book and liked it on FB. Oh, how I hope to win the book.

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  89. OF COURSE I WANT ONE!!!!!!!!! I think we all started our blogs around the same time, and I am in awe of you both! Valorie has great style and i love the photos you showed. Thanks Joni and Valorie!
    email@katiedenham.com

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  90. Would LOVE to own a copy of this book. I read her blog and find her so insuring. I liked her on FB.

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  91. I liked The Visual Vamp on Facebook! It's a time of year when I only shop for others so it would be lovely to get this book for myself...

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  92. I live in Louisiana! Would love to win! She is genius at decorating.

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  93. The pictures were such fun to see. I would love to own this book! PJKINATL@HOTMAIL.COM

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  94. Thanks everyone!!!! Good luck!!!!

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  95. Thanks for the opportunity. I read Valerie faithfully and gave her beautiful book to my aunt for her birthday, would love one of my own! Pam Clark hatkeys@yahoo.com

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  96. Interesting post. The book looks wonderful!

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  97. Joni, this has to be one of my all time favorite posts from you! We spend every Christmas in New Orleans with family.....heading there on the 22nd for our annual celebration. I have never heard of Valorie Hart until this post! I love learning about new people, great design and whimsy....she certainly has whimsy! I'd LOVE to win a copy of her book and will certainly order one if I do not. As always, thank you for the beauty you share and bring into our lives! Happy Holidays!

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  98. Thank you for highlighting this book. It makes me miss my New Orleans. Please enter me for the drawing.
    stumpf@consolidated.net

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  99. I have been reading her blog for years. She always has a unique perspective on using color and mixing styles to create energetic spaces. I would love to read her book.

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  100. Hey Joni!
    LOVE the book and can't wait to start following The Visual Vamp! I liked Valorie's blog on FB! Fingers crossed I'll be one of the winners of her fab book!

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  101. I've been reading Valorie's blog for several years and she's such a sweetheart! A couple of years ago she posted a photo of a set of candles I admired so I contacted her to ask her where I might find some like them. Much to my delight she wrapped up her own pair and sent them to me! I would love to have a copy of her book! I liked her FB page.

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  102. Valerie has such panache!!! I would LOVE to win her book. Just liked her on facebook. Off to read her blog. Thanks, Joni.

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  103. Joni,
    Love Valerie's style! I'm sure her book will inspire with my own project! I've liked her page and look forward to reading her blog. Thank you for this giveaway! cdellapenna@dellapenna.com

    Cyn

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  104. This book looks SO Fabulous, would love to have it in my library!

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  105. I lived in NOLA for 8 years and miss the architecture and design so much (especially my old living rooms 12 foot ceiling). Would love to have this book! Peggy.lowe@ gmail.com

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  106. Valorie's style is confident and vibrant. But I must confess to being confused...is it my age? The beautiful room with aqua chairs (and Joni pointed out the mid-century mix) and gorgeous Persian rug has a bright green painting. It feels glaringly wrong in there. Could somebody walk me through WHY it is the best choice? It seems just plain weird...

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  107. The book looks fantastic! I liked the page and can't wait to win my copy!! ;-) thanks -(monacointeriors.blogspot.com)

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  108. Have yet to read a "shelter" publication or a blog that I didn't enjoy!
    That goes for Valorie's new book and Cote de Texas!
    rraun@att.net

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  109. I would love to win this book, sign me up please. zak.tammy@gmail.com

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  110. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  111. Let's try this again! I messed up royally via sloppy typing and not from one too many Hurricanes! BTW, I am not the same "Margaret" as the lovely lady above me!
    Valorie's style should be, "N-Y-ola!" She is a hoot, and should be given the keys to the city. Am throwing my name into the hat for her book, oh yeah!

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  112. I've been enjoying Valorie Hart's blog for a while-- I look forward to reading it whenever it appears in my inbox ~ always full of cool decorating treats with a twist, and gorgeous pix! Thanks! [robichauxchris@hotmail.com}

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  113. I would love to be enetered to win this amazing looking book...thank you

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  114. There are a number of great designers that I would enjoy "shadowing" for a few days, but none more so that Valorie Hart. The reason, of course, is that Valorie sees every design opportunity through a fresh lens. It often amazes me the the schemes she developes for such a variety of clients and manages to give them such a sense of style no matter the budget. I really admire her work although it is an entirely departure from my own, she is a true "designer".

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  115. An original. I love persimmon anything! Count me in.

    Eileen@erosecomm.com

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  116. I've liked the Facebook page as Katherine Ryan :) Enter me please!

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  117. I "liked" Valorie's Facebook page. Please enter me to win one of her beautiful books. Thanks!

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  118. I liked and would love to be entered!

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  119. I would love a copy of House Proud. I've liked Valorie's work from afar and now on facebook!

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  120. I have been a big fan of Valorie's. Her blog is always so inspiring. I would love to have a copy of her book!

    Sally
    smpetermann@charter.net

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  121. I "liked" Valorie's Facebook page and would like to enter to win a copy of her beautiful and intriguing book. nanroth1328@gmail.com

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    Replies
    1. Another great decorator book to add to my collection!!! sylvialinhares@aol.com

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  122. What a lovely book! I just liked Valorie's Facebook page. Please include my name in the drawing.
    Thank you!
    Joyce
    aliugadrat@gmail.com

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  123. Hi Joni, I too, love Visual Vamp. Your description of her personality and all the different things shes into, her lively spirit...this is exactly how I have pictured her through reading her blog. Shes very interesting and so are her designs and use of color. I have been wanting this book, would love to win it! Thanks! elli1017@gmail.com.

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  124. Elegant, but sassy. Love Valorie's constant changing style and surprises in all her décor. Her décor gives my tired décor a welcome jolt! Thanks.
    Please enter my name in her giveaway.
    Merry Christmas.
    Elisa
    ttntex@att.net

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  125. Love Valorie and House Proud!!! She is a fun and talented woman with amazing taste!!!

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  126. The rooms by Valorie and the others in her book are beautiful! Would love to win a book. elizabeth@carskadden.com

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  127. I love the images you posted from the book; and I love having a new site to visit! thanks to you both for the giveaway! dekawatson@bellsouth.net

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  129. Joni, at times like these I wish I did Facebook! This looks like a good read. I love Louisiana, and I can't wait for the one on Texas. Your house should definitely be included!

    xo

    Sheila

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  130. I would love to win this book - if not, I will definitely need to buy it. I love the style - NOLA with a twist. New Orleans is a city that just gets in your soul. Once you have been, if you connect with it, you will always carry it in your heart.

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  131. Everything from the smallest details, to the drapes are beautiful!

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  132. A woman with true style ! Would love to win ! vickydar@charter.net

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  133. Aggressive designing i have no words to describe your logos keep it continue.
    Thanks

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  134. Love Valerie's style! I've liked the FB page and hope I'm a winner!

    Thank you!
    Stephanie

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