PaperCity Magazine

October 2014 - Houston

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Why a mortician? During my senior year of college, I decided I did not want to go to graduate school. I was taking a class in thanatology, which led to my decision to attend the Dallas Institute of Funeral Service after I graduated. No one else in my family had a connection with this field. I chose to do it solely out of curiosity. I've always been fascinated with death and dying — the macabre. Going to old cemeteries was one of my favorite pastimes as a child. I consider cemeteries to be very meditative spaces. Once I graduated from mortuary school, I completed my apprenticeship and worked for four years as a funeral director at Sparkman-Hillcrest of Dallas. I maintain an active funeral director's license through continuing education classes every two years. How the move to Anthropologie came about. In 2003, I was working for a special events company that did propping and styling for Neiman Marcus. I was looking for ways to parallel my art degree and my career. Anthropologie came to Dallas that same year. With its innovative visual displays and collections of found objects and furniture, it's one of the only retailers to employ in-house artists to create visual environments. Many people suggested that I should apply for the display artist position and I did. The rest is history. "I KNEW WE WERE A PERFECT MATCH WHEN I DISCOVERED THAT WE BOTH KNEW HOW TO USE A SEWING MACHINE AND POWER TOOLS." — Brian Neal Sensabaugh Day-to-day at Anthro. I'm responsible for the conceptualization and creation of the artistic moments that are created in the stores, which include the windows and interior displays. Your home seems a definite reflection of you. Where does all the stuff come from? I've been a collector all my life. I love things in multiples — things that have a history and things that tell a story. I surround myself with objects that speak to me; I still have some of my earliest collections from my childhood. I use these found objects in my artwork and I always keep an eye out for interesting things. Is your home a never ending project? My husband would say it's complete because we are out of room! Somehow I manage to always find the perfect place for a new acquisition. Favorite find. We have a tombstone that I acquired from a random source that is installed in our dining room. It is that of a child that died in 1892 at the age of two years. We have researched a possible history but were unable to find any connections. It's something that we respect very much. Its history and energy are still very present. Not wanting it to roam the Earth without a home, we are happy to show it some love. The secret to creating a space. It's truly individual. People should surround themselves with things that speak to them. Common thread that ties together great interiors. Good designers use objects and art to tell stories. Anthropologie's aesthetic and design is very similar to my own personal style of decorating and design. Now, a few words about James. How does he inspire you? I knew we were a perfect match when I discovered that we both knew how to use a sewing machine and power tools. We have proven to be a partnership that challenges each other creatively. James is my best friend who amazes me with his patience and unconditional love. He balances my quirky nature and allows me the freedom to be me. The master bedroom is painted Green Key by Ralph Lauren. Above the bed hangs the National Geographic print Discovery, inherited from Scott's grandparents. Antique Queen Anne poster bed. Duvet from Urban Outfitters. Pillows from IKEA and Ralph Lauren. The retro loveseat was scored at a local Goodwill store. Handmade pillow by Sensabaugh and Scott. Sensabaugh and Scott sharing a moment in their backyard, which includes seasonal herb and vegetable gardens and a large fig tree. Vintage German Art Deco crystal chan- delier hangs above a dining-room table and chest inherited from Sensabaugh's grandparents. Vintage cane-back chairs from a Houston estate sale. Antique medical sign from Fort Sam Houston. Flowers by Sensabaugh. In the guest room, a Kartell pen- dant light hangs above a vintage bedside table from The Guild Shop. Ralph Lauren linens dress the iron bed inherited from Sensabaugh's grandparents. Above: "Haunted" doll head and vintage vase from Texas Art Asylum. Collage on left by Josh Pazda. Left: The couple's portrait collection fills the stairwell. Antique marble garden statue. Embroidered artwork by Sensabaugh. Ceramic dog head serves as leash holder.

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