The Academy – A Creative and Editorial Styling Event

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 Over the years, there have been countless times I’ve been asked for advice about my career. Depending on where the person was on their own path, the questions would range from photography advice, blogging and brand image topics, to how I got started styling, and what it takes to work with magazines and major brands. I’ve realized there are so many creative people wanting to pursue their passion and learn to refine and improve their own body of work. I also noticed there weren’t many offerings of teaching others creative and editorial styling. Most were geared towards the wedding or floral industry and not specifically on professional styling.
So after a year of contemplating the idea of helping others learn the art of styling, I’ve created   The Academy – A Creative and Editorial Styling Event.

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The first week long event will take place next spring in Dordogne, France. I’ve reserved a small private 15th century chateau exclusively for our group May 14-21, 2016. Taking time away from our daily tasks and environments will allow for relaxation, inspiration and creativity to overflow. I’ve designed an amazing curriculum to share with you including intensive lectures and hands-on styling sessions and have included fabulous excursions to antique brocantes, 11th century villages, picnics, and authentic French open air markets. In essence, I can’t wait to share with you all my favorite things about France while we explore and learn the theories and best practices of creative and editorial styling.

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You can learn more about the itinerary I created and additional details about the event by reading The Academy Brochure.
If you would like to reserve a limited space to attend, please visit The Academy by Heather Bullard to fill out a Reservation Form and make a deposit.

For more information or questions, feel free to get in touch!

Styling Work: California Farmhouse


I’m just going to put this out there…farmhouses have been and always will be my favorite locations to style. It doesn’t matter if it’s a dilapidated 100 year old home with creeky floors and vines growing out of the walls or a complete renovation that’s been updated with modern conveniences – I love them all. This one I styled for Country Living is no exception. It was small with tons of windows, nestled in California wine country with a homeowner who adored simplicity. She enlisted the talents of designer Laurie Furber of Elsie Green to accomplish the task of renovating and decorating the home. And I think they struck the perfect balance of antique and new furnishings with a result that is warm and welcoming.
For the dining table I created an early morning breakfast scene with casual fare and a pile of mis-matched pillows on the banquette. It ended up being my favorite shot with that gorgeous light streaming through the window panes.


They tucked an old French work bench into a small niche in the living room making it the perfect bar area. The black and white photos throughout the home were original to the area and included a few of the property in it’s former farmhouse glory.
The kitchen was open and bright with large beams and library lights centered over the island. Here I added in natural elements, reworked the shelves and kept the styling fresh.


I’m sure everyone loves my shenanigans on set (wink, wink) especially when it involves grabbing the tallest ladder we can find and several of us trying to cut a large tree branch for my vision….
Mission accomplished (without injury) and it definitely added so much life to the entry shot.



I styled the outdoor table with a laid back barbecue gathering just as the sun was setting. This was in fact, our final shot. Too bad there weren’t any grilled burgers for those buns…we could have had a wrap party right there. You can see more images and read about the details behind this amazing farmhouse at Country Living.
Photos – David Tsay | Styling – Heather Bullard

Between posts you can find me on Instagram sharing highlights of daily life.

Grove House: Salvaged Wood & Marble Vanity

Heather Bullard | Wood & Marble Vanity-10

One of the design elements I incorporated into building our home was the use of salvaged wood. The warmth and character it can give new construction was the main reason I chose the material. By using it sparingly in several rooms I was able to achieve the clean modern farmhouse aesthetic I was going for. It unified the home design by creating a cohesive element throughout the spaces.

For the master bathroom my vision was to have simple lines and an overall light & airy atmosphere. I designed a floating vanity made with salvaged scaffolding planks and marble counters to fit inside a recessed wall. You can see a before photo of the area in this post. Because salvaged wood can vary extensively, we had to go through each and every board in order to find enough that would work seamlessly together. This was especially important since your eye is drawn down the entire line of the vanity when you walk into the room.

Heather Bullard | Wood & Marble Vanity-2

Between the double sinks, the makeup vanity drops down to the proper height for sitting and creates a nice nook that is now used daily. For the honed Carrara marble counter tops, I had our fabricator miter the edges with a 2″ reveal. This creates a more substantial look and hides the seam line. (This same reveal was done in our kitchen to unify the look of the marble surfaces.) The 4″ backsplash on the vanity drops down at the makeup area to create a focal point. The under mount rectangle sinks are by Kohler and faucets are from Signature Hardware.

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Above you can see the wood detail and imperfections. To prepare the salvaged planks, they were wire brushed and finished with a matte sealer. Here you can also see how adding a mitered edge to your marble will get rid of that dreaded “cut and glue” seam line I see so often in countertops. And the good news, any fabricator will be able to miter the edge for you.

The three lower drawers are made of solid maple and the wood planks were attached to each front. They have a hidden notch underneath for your hand to pull them out. I felt that adding hardware would have been distracting from the clean lines I was seeking for the space. The two upper drawers under each sink are false fronts.

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All of the salvaged planks had makers stamps and the contractors branding on them and I made sure we utilized these details in unexpected ways, so you’ll see every time I open my makeup drawer I’m greeted with this….

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At the end of the vanity (right next to our walk in closet door) I hung an Ikea towel/pot rack to hold my necklaces. Really, I could hang these in every room. They’re so incredibly useful. And simple.

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There are still a few loose ends before I can consider the room finished. I need to find a light for the alcove above the antique Swedish cabinet and decide on what artwork I want to add. Which is why there’s one propped up. Oh, and have the hardware fabricated so the mirrors will slide out. There are recessed cabinets behind those temporary mirrors. But things are moving along.

Let me know if you have any questions. I’ll do my best to answer them in the comments.
Thanks for dropping by today!

Between posts you can find me on Instagram sharing highlights of daily life.

Origami Leather Tote

Heather Bullard | Leather Tote-2

Hello! I wanted to pass along one of my favorite purchases this year, a handcrafted leather tote made by local LA based leather works company 1.61 Softgoods. Seriously. Obsessed with it. The quality is impeccable. The simplicity and attention to detail are what caught my eye. It’s handcrafted from a single piece of leather with modern solid brass handles, cleats, and rivets.

Heather Bullard | Picnic Tote-2

They were designed over the course of 6 months in collaboration with Baum-kuchen which is where I bought mine. Usually I keep it in my office to hold my planner, phone charger, and memory cards for my camera but it makes for a beautiful picnic tote and market basket for quick trips to the farm stand. I purchased the large size with cleats but I think it needs a little sister…so I’ll probably bring that one home next. Don’t you just love finding something that makes you giddy?

Between posts you can find me on Instagram sharing highlights of daily life.

Summer Reading List

Heather Bullard  Summer Reading 2015

This summer I’ve made a deliberate effort to spend more time reading. Or I should say, reading works outside my normal realm of non-fiction and business/finance books. I’ve never been one to “let go” and loose myself in the thrill of a fiction novel. I think it’s the sensible realist in me always thinking in the back of my mind…”this would never happen in real life”. But this year I made a vow to break out of my shell and try some new material and I have to say it’s been quite liberating to embrace the art of storytelling. I thought I’d share a few of my finds and hope that you’ll leave a comment with some of your recommendations. Please excuse the wide variety here…as I say, fiction is mostly unchartered territory and I’m still learning what appeals to me and for that, I’ve included a few non-fiction and design related books to even things out.

The Signature of All Things – This is the perfect summer book. It’s filled with botanical explorations and discovery during the 19th century and weaves a beautiful tale of the amazing life of botanist Alma Whittaker. While reading the astonishing story, I couldn’t stop thinking about the research that went into writing it. The intricate and vast detail of the landscape, geography, botanical specimens, the spice trade and life during that era are utterly captivating.

The New Bohemians – Being a self proclaimed neutral lover, I purposely bought this for inspiration on incorporating small amounts of color in my decor. The book nicely balances strong doses of color with images of rooms filled with rich textures and earthy elements such as lush plants and warm woods. Now I just need to act on my newly found inspiration.

The Martian – Wow. I mean really. Wow. This is about as far out of my comfort zone as they come. What with the space travel and all the Sci-Fi techno terminology interspersed throughout…but on the flip side, it’s a gripping story of human ingenuity and strength and you’ll find yourself rooting for the hero (who was accidentally left behind a mission to Mars) to survive all odds working against him on the desolate planet. I can hardly wait for the movie!

The Light Between Oceans – The book I’m currently reading. The story of a husband and wife living in a lighthouse on an isolated island off the coast of Australia. The couple suffer from the heartache of miscarriage and stillbirth only to find one day a boat has washed ashore carrying a dead man and a tiny baby girl. As you can imagine the plot only thickens.

Heather Bullard  Summer Reading2 2015

Trans Atlantic – Fiction based on historical events are always on my radar and I picked this one up based on GoodReads reviews, this particular quote lured me in, “Transatlantic begins with a breathtaking, beautiful and utterly compelling account of the first transatlantic plane flight. Even though I knew this little corner of history, my heart was still in my mouth as McCann describes the perils and textures of early flight.” Tales of harrowing first flights always remind me how brave and incredible mankind truly was during those feats into the unknown.

Manage Your Day to Day – I got this to read on my iPad during a business trip. I find those idle hotel room hours are a great time to learn ways I can fine tune my work routines. This book was amazingly helpful in that area. As the owner of a creative business, some of the concepts I found especially useful were establishing hard edges in my day (a start and finish time), tackle the most important task first (meaningful work before everything else), block off time for uninterrupted focus and never allow distraction. Really there were so many solid ideas I could put to use immediately. Loved it! And it’s free with Unlimited Kindle if you’re an Amazon Prime Member. 

Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less – Less but better. In this digital age it seems more than ever there are constants needing our “attention” pulling us away from what truly is essential. The disciplined pursuit of less focuses on how to gain insight into our ability to choose, discern, create boundaries, and establish clarity in our own essential truths whether it be for business or personal development. In short, it’s not about how to get more things done, just the right things.

The Girl on the Train – To be honest, I just wanted to see what all the hype was about. It was a quick read written in diary form with a few unexpected plot twists. The book jacket summarizes it as: “There she sits, the girl on the train, what she sees, gazing out the window, will change everything”. It sort of reminded me of Where’d You Go Bernadette in the writing style. Or maybe Gone Girl? Which I haven’t read but can imagine it might be…as it’s of the same genre?

There were a couple other books of note, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up (which was so-so for me as I found I’m pretty tidy with my mild ocd) and The Compound Effect which focuses on the small decisions we make that in return, can yield huge benefits. It’s a concept I grasped early in life in regards to finances but somehow easily overlook in how it applies to daily tasks as well.

Please share your summer books with me. I’d love to know what you’re reading!