At Floor Coverings International, we love to bring you insight and perspectives from designers. In this post, we have an interview with DIY designer Jeanette Chaney, host of Country Design Style.

Floor Coverings International: Can you tell me a little about yourself?

Jeanette Chaney: Currently we live in a cabin in the mountains of Arizona. Down time is spent on our large front porch with our two dogs. Our grown children live in different states which makes for amusing road trips. I volunteer for our local Humane Society on their fund raising committee. There I assist with decorating for events. I believe any home can be beautiful, no matter the size, type or style.

FCI: What made you decide to start a blog? What do you enjoy about blogging?

JC: I’m semi-retired but have to stay busy. DIY projects are a way of life for me. I would be designing and building projects for our home even if I didn’t blog, but blogging as a fun way to share my ideas and projects. Projects that are awesome and those that fail.

I enjoy the connection with others in the DIY blogging community. DIY bloggers are extremely helpful, friendly and supportive. Developing photography skills is a surprise benefit to blogging. Plus, finding my writing style and voice as I learn to write as through I’m talking to my best friend.

FCI: Why do you choose to “do it yourself”?

JC: It’s what I’ve always done. When I was six, my dad handed me an old alarm clock and tools to take it apart and remake it. Although I don’t think the alarm ever worked again! Mom let me rearrange rooms and help make curtains. As a single mom, I didn’t have much money, but always had a beautiful home. Even the little duplex next to the train tracks was charming. Before blogging was invented, I started a furniture and home decor business on the central coast of California. There I was building, remaking, and painting items to sell in local shops. Mantels are my favorite thing to make.

FCI: What do you find rewarding about DIY?

JC: Knowing I’ve spent little to achieve a beautiful home. I also like DIY projects that solve a problem and looks stunning. Like designing a way to hide the wires and cable boxes when the TV sits on the mantel or hangs on the wall. DIY is solving problems. My dad also said, “there’s not a problem that can’t be solved.” I also like the repurposing and using all the pieces when designing and building projects. Repurposing a buffet into a computer desk or picking up the wood scrap leftovers to make another project.

FCI: How do you find inspiration and come up with the ideas for your projects?

JC: Everywhere. That seems like a canned answer. But it is true. From home stores and magazines to filling that unique need in our home. Working on the computer and blogging adds another dimension to inspiration. I might find a color in the paint store that’s perfect for a graphic on the website.

FCI: Tell me about one of your favorite projects.

JC: My faux mantel. This project fits me. I used every scrap piece of wood, broken spindles, and leftover trim I could gather. Even the pieces I swept up in the dust pan of my workshop was used in building this mantel. It solved two problems. The mantel filled a space in our master bedroom that needed something thin, high, and wide. It’s also a fun place to decorate for the website and us. Even the chalkboard firebox gets a change with the holidays and seasons.

Oahu Country Design Style

Jeanette runs the Country Design Style blog at countrydesignstyle.com.