Dating Sucks: Wait, Is This a Date?

Photograph by Zeke Ruelas (an outtake from “Get it Together,” available now for pre-order) Editor’s Note: I love this image by Zeke Ruelas. It was taken for a chapter from Get It Together about weight loss and body dysmorphia. I know I look absolutely insane but it makes me laugh so hard. Okay bye. Dear Dating Diary, The other night, I went to dinner with a guy I’ve been “hanging out” with. I say “hanging out” because I have no idea whether the two times we’ve hung out were actual dates or if they were networking. The first time we…

Casa Soria: Planning the New Deck with Humboldt Redwood Company

Source Dear Construction Diary, It’s become increasingly clear that my parents’ kitchen renovation project has ballooned and is now basically an entire home makeover. One element that I’ve been itching to change on their house since they moved in is the deck the sits outside the kitchen. An interesting thing about their house is that it’s very vertical. There are three levels because it’s on a hillside and the kitchen is on the top level. In order to make sure there’s easily accessible outdoor space, a deck off the kitchen is essential. We’re expanding the new kitchen out onto an…

The Wacky Wacko World of Seth Bogart

Dear Diary, I first came across Seth Bogart about ten years ago when he was the frontman of the band Hunx and His Punx. I was immediately obsessed with the world he’s created with his music, his performance, and his visual art. The whole thing reads as some sort of fucked up version of 1950s melodramatic teen love drama, mixed with a bit of Pee-Wee’s Playhouse and a little bit of Litchenstein/Warhol/Hockey. His work has followed me and remained everpresent in my life for the past ten years and it’s something that makes me happy every time I remember it…

Amanda Crew’s Craftsman Bungalow Gets a Bright and Airy Update

Photography by Tessa Neustadt Courtesy Homepolish Dear Design Diary, After you’ve lived in LA for a while you start to dread meeting actors, especially ones on popular TV shows who are famous. Normally, they are crazy high-maintenance, attention-hungry, and completely insane (like not in a fun way, in a way that makes them irritating and unrelatable). These are vast generalizations, but I’ve made friends with enough COMPLETELY BONKERS actors to know that you should approach them the way you’d approach a mountain lion in the wild, with caution, fear, and a thoroughly-planned escape route. You can imagine my surprise when…

The Emotional Undercurrent of Interior Design

Dear Renovation Diary, Yesterday I was at Emily’s house shooting some promo stills for Get it Together! when I got news from my mom that the contractor I hired to renovate their kitchen told her it was going to be another two months until it was finished. I was furious. This project started nearly a year ago has taken months longer than expected, cost twice as much as expected, and been filled with compromises I didn’t care to make. I called the contractor to check in on what was going on and completely lost my cool. I tend to be…

Dating Sucks: Is Your Prospective Date a Lunatic?

Dear Dating Diary, I recently received this message from a prospective date: Hi Orlando! I hope you’re week has gone well. I want you to do a little exercise for me tonight. Stand in front of the mirror and say this: I’m really just a self-validation whore who’s on dating apps just to get attention with no real intention to meet anyone. Through my profile I mislead people into thinking that I’m looking for something real, when in reality I’m totally unexcitable and disinterested in the whole thing and that makes me a pathetic liar. I don’t care about other…

Casa Soria: Planning The Guest Bedroom

Photographs by Zeke Ruelas & Tessa Neustadt Dear Makeover Diary, Firstly, let’s discuss the fact that I’ve named my parents’ house Casa Soria. I did this for a few reasons. Firstly, I love naming things (Orcondo, Châteaulando, orMOMdo, orlanDAD, etc). Second, I’m working on a fair amount of projects there (kitchen, sitting room, family room, foyer, and so on) so I thought it would just be easier if it had a name. Casa Soria is where my family tends to get together. I’m making it nice because I think after working hard their whole lives and saving forever so they…

Why I Painted a Gay Triangle in My Fireplace

Pretty Photograph by Zeke Ruelas Gross Ugly Photographs by Orlando Soria Dear Fireplace Diary, There is a time honored question literally every single person who has a decorative (nonfunctioning) fireplace must ask themselves at some point. “WHAT SHOULD I PUT IN THE FIREPLACE???” It is a question I get from clients all the time. And there are about a million answers. None of them are totally satisfying to be fully honest. Because what you really want in a fireplace is – wait for it – A FIRE. When I stopped by (read: basically broke in) to check out Chateaulando, the first…

A Year Depressed

On January first, a switched flipped and the heavy feeling of depression I felt for all of 2017 was magically lifted. I don’t fully know how to explain it. I just woke up on the first day of January and was fine. I think it had mostly to do with my outlook and a bit to do with my physical state. I was a bit resigned last year to the fact that I’d be depressed all year, which probably became a self-fulfilling prophecy. I also had an injury and was in pain for the second half of last year, so…

Seeing My Bedroom in a New Light Thanks to Pratt & Lambert

Photography by Zeke Ruelas Dear Color Diary, As you may or may not know already, I decided to paint my bedroom blush pink at the beginning of this year. I’ve loved that color, but as a designer I’m constantly using my home to try out new ideas. So when Pratt & Lambert® Paints, the paint company who have been combining quality and beautiful color for over 150 years, reached out to me and wanted to collaborate, I jumped at the chance to re-envision my bedroom. Don’t get me wrong, I loved what the bedroom looked like before. I’ve always wanted…