We've always had a crush on the Don Juans, a powerhouse eye for art and design at an accessible level, and then we caught a glimpse of their home, and pretty much died and came back to life. Naturally it had to be a feature on The Folksie Way, and why not our first!
Miguel is an original member of the Grafitti and Street Art Crew, The Sour Grapes, and an Art Teacher at Trinity Basin. Diana is an ER nurse by day and Design Enthusiast by night.
Q: What objects have been most significant to you lately?
A: Now this is hard! Hmmmm… Well we just recently brought my old dog's watering bowl to live with us! My beloved family dog has been long gone to doggie heaven for many years but he was a huge part of my childhood and I wanted a part of him to be close, so we repurposed the galvanized tub into a yucca home. The beautiful tub brought the right amount of industrial feel we needed for our backyard.
Q: What are your inspirations for your home design?
A: Home design didn’t really play a big part of my life until we found a home to make our own and when we had the means to make the designs come to life. We both have never really liked the feel of ordinary so we knew we had to make this place speak to us, but now I must say that I am a bit obsessed. We find inspirations from our local restaurants and retail stores. We walk into them constantly looking on how they build their shelves or what type of material they used for their outdoor accent wall so that we can bring that same feel home.
Q: What are you serious about?
A: We are serious about life and experiencing it. Making sure that we enjoy this ride and embrace our family and friends throughout our journey! There is just so much out there to explore, touch, and eat that we need not to be stagnating and continue to move!
Q: What things will you never take too seriously?
A: My job! I don’t ever want to just live to work. I work so I can live! Also, debt because in life we will never really own anything other than our experiences!
Q: Which came first, the home or the love of home design? When did you find your perfect home and what was the process?
A: Our home! It came first before we even thought about the design world. We bought this 1940's home about 3 years ago. We had been living in an apartment for two years when the rent kept on creeping up. We got sick of hearing people say, "Stop throwing away your money and invest" so we found an Oak Cliff realtor (shout out to Brian Bleeker!) that connected us to this badass casita.
Q: Do you have a favorite thrifting spot? Tell us about it?
A: I’m not quite sure if I want to reveal this gem, but for you, my dear friend, I will! It’s an Oak Cliff classic called Thrift Town! They have a mixture of everything and its not overpriced like all the other thrift stores in Dallas. I have found countless knickknacks there for years that add the perfect amount of fab to this home.
Q: How important is Art in your home? What advice would you give to people who are unsure how to buy art or how to work it into their home?
A: Considering that I am married to this man of mine, it is VERY important! He has taught me the importance of not only having art to enhance our space, but also having original works that tell a story. My advice would be to invest in original art pieces and stop buying the framed mess that big corporations sell in bulk. There are many local artist that sell original works for very reasonable prices, so do your research, find what speaks to your style and buy local art!
Q: How would you describe your own personal style?
A: Party in the front and Business in the back.
Q: What are some of your favorite clothing lines?
A: My favorites are Pins and Needles, Ecote, Folksie, and Silence + Noise. Michael’s favorites are Gap, J. Crew, and Clarks.
Q: Do you have any rules when it comes to being a consumer of fashion, home decor, and art?
A: There is really only one rule. If you find any object, from clothes to furniture to plants, and you can look at it square in its center and say "I love you" then it belongs in your world! If not, honey walk away!
Q: Where do you live and what do you love about it?
A: We were so fortunate to have found this little pocket of goodness in Oak Cliff called Elmwood. It’s made up of many unique Tudors, craftsmen, and cottage homes. We love that no two homes look alike! The neighborhood is old and full of character that not many places hold anymore. We lucked out too that not only do we have this little gem but we also have sweet neighbors!
Q: Who was your first style, art or design icon or inspiration?
A: My parents. Without even knowing it, my mother was influencing my design style when she would take me to her old factory job. They were a vintage clothing distributor company that worked out of this beautiful old industrial building! As a child, I would literally dive into huge mounds of fur, denim, and leather clothing surrounded by wooden metal crates! It was paradise. As for my dad, he had an eye for finding unique rustic pieces, which brought warmth to our home and a story to tell. I blame them for creating this vicious thirst to design!
Q: What’s the one wardrobe or beauty essential you cannot live without?
A: Our wedding bands and tattoos.
Q: What has been your best score?
A: Our vintage badass lawyer metal bookcase!
Q: What advice would you give to anyone that wants to create their dream home, but feels like they don't quite know where to get started?
A: Take your time and buy what feels good to you! Buy one piece at a time and slowly things will come together and please, take risks!
Q: Tell us how you really feel about the old logic of "I need a piece of art to match my sofa"
A: Sell the sofa, take the sofa money and by an original piece of art instead.
Q: What is your favorite art / design / furnishings source, that is not thrift? Why?
A: Albert Reyes because it’s Albert Reyes.
Q: If money were no issue, what purchase for your home would you make right now?
A: Easy! A Brockway 3' wall mount wash sink from Kohler! Please!!!!!
Q: Is there anything about your story that you would like to add?
A: Do you bro! Do you!