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Fab Fridays: Nicole Dufour Durocher, the BKLYN Contessa

Each Friday Simplifying Fabulous! presents Fab Fridays, an up-close-and-personal look at how one of our community members simplifies fabulous in their own life. Is there someone you'd like to see featured? Email your submission to info@simplifyingfabulous.com. BKLYN Contessa | Simplifyingfabulous.com

Simplifying Fabulous! with Nicole Dufour DuRocher, the BKLYN contessa

ABOUT Nicole is a photographer, an artist and the editor of popular life + style blog BKLYN contessa. "I'm former corporate 9-to-5-er who left Johnson & Johnson to follow my bliss and live happily ever after with my Mr. Wonderful and our two adorable pups in Bed-Stuy {do or die} Brooklyn." We met Nicole back at Kravet's Blogfest 2011 and loved her unique vision and voice. We're sure you will too! This girl truly finds inspiration everywhere! Editors note: Nicole shared so much amazing information, that we've done a two-part Fab Friday! Check out the second post where Nicole simplifies fabulous through the lens of her blog categories!

BKLYNContessa | Simplifyingfabulous.com

RB: What do you love most about your home? BKYLN: I love, love, love the windows in my apartment. First, I have multiple exposures which is not the norm in NYC. Secondly, each of the seven windows are six feet tall with the original turn-of-the-last-century woodwork. Oh, and the view from my living room windows is so charming, especially in the winter when the pine trees in the church yard are laden with snow and throughout Lent the stain glass windows are lit in the evenings for Mass. It is rather E.M. Forster of me, but the best rooms are those with a view! RB: How have you personalized your home? BKYLN: Each of the rooms in my 800 square foot home are incredibly personal and I have included special sentimental bits here and there to make them so. In the kitchen I have my Grandmother’s rolling pins and a cookbook her mother made for her after she was married. In the dining room I have our engagement present from my mother which is an antique mantle clock and I also have a pair of brass vases my Grandfather sent to my Grandmother while they were dating and he was stationed in India during WWII. In the den I have my Grandparent’s hassock which I used to turn sideways and roll on as a small child and my husband has some of his Grandfather’s architecture books. In the bedroom on my husband’s nightstand is a little drive-in movie theater Limoges box I gave him when we were dating since our first date was at a vintage drive-in. In the dressing room I have my most treasured photographs which include five generations of mothers and daughters … portraits of me + my mother + grandmother + great grandmother + great great grandmother are framed simply and displayed in order. In the living room I have an African violet plant in a petite vintage pot which is something my Grandmother always had in her living rooms. For our bedroom, I purchased vintage metal gas station number signs in 4, 1 and 7 then mounted them horizontally in a straight line … 417 is significant because my husband’s birthday is April 17th RB: What inspires you personally? BKYLN: When you live in New York City inspiration is quite easily stumbled across and you never know what exactly it may be from moment to moment. Lately I have noticed chevron patterns in architecture and have snapped photos with my blackberry whenever I seen another pop up. When I first moved to NYC years ago I was very inspired by the noise, it may sound a bit odd but it completely changed my views on abstract art.

BKLYN Contessa | Simplifyingfabulous.com

Oh, I am also on a HUGE graffiti kick! It started when I watched the first episode of Art:21 on PBS and Margaret Kilgallen said “I like to see people’s hand in the world.” I see graffiti as temporary fine art, it is incredibly relevant in the urban landscape and though to some it may be controversial or considered garbage. Regardless of your personal views, graffiti is an evocative, bold statement and its communicative nature is art in its purest form! I came across this work a couple weeks ago … isn’t it stunning!

RB: What do you do when you have hit a creative block? BKYLN: To be honest, I take a beat or two. Anything creative cannot be forced and often when there is a block you need to go in a different direction. Life is not a clear, delineated path and sometimes you have to change it up. If you follow me on twitter, you might know that I have recently leased an art studio in Bushwick and I have been super busy with preparations there. When I creative block I evaluate everything and change course...this is actually how my art studio came to be. I found that I had posted a lot of abstract art on the life+style field guide plus my ART file was full with even more and I noticed my macro photography projects were becoming increasingly abstracted. I realized that I wanted to start to paint again and then the Mr. suggested that I lease an atelier! I cannot wait until I am all settled in and have a space to be creative that is my very own… There are some fantastic things to come for BKLYN contessa! RB: What are your personal indulgences? BKLYN: Whenever I travel upstate to visit my in-laws, things are normally hectic and hurried...and well we all know the joke: What is the difference between in-laws and outlaws? Outlaws are wanted. ha! ha! So I indulge in a morning trip to the day spa for a facial…then I am ready for anything! Bring on the screaming niece and nephew! At home I indulge with what every other 30 year old woman does…yoga pants, reality tv and wine.

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