Once on the fast track to law school, Alabama grad, Cathleen Cantrell, thought she’d work for a year or two in the field before heading back to hit the books. After working at a large law firm and discovering a love for marketing and social media, she decided it was time to make a career change. Instead of pursuing a law degree, she’d continue to work in the creative department of the firm. While she enjoyed exploring her new interest, she always felt as if something were missing. One trip to a bridal boutique while helping her sister find the perfect wedding gown is all it took for her to realize that that is where she was meant to be. There it was. Shortly thereafter, the owner of Mia Bridal Couture in Houston made her an offer as a Marketing Coordinator that she couldn’t pass up, so she left the law firm in the dust. Considering she’s had Martha Stewart Weddings subscription since the age of nine, we can’t help but support her decision to tackle the wedding industry.
Her Houston garage apartment is reflective of feminine industry in which she spends her days. Filled with a variety of textures and a solid dose of glam, Cat’s one-bedroom “nook” eludes just the right amount of Southern belle charm. Today, she shares her pink and gold home with us and encourages readers to, “let go of the timeline.”
Full Name: Cathleen (Cat) Cantrell
Current Title/Company: Marketing Coordinator, Mia Bridal Couture
Educational Background: B.A. in Political Science, University of Alabama
What was your first job out of college and how did you land it?
I was a Marketing Assistant for a Commercial Real Estate Company. Not at all what I imagined being a Political Science major with my heart set on law school, but it was a huge learning experience. My brief stint with the company really opened my eyes to the world of Marketing and I haven’t looked back since.
You’re currently a marketing coordinator for Mia Bridal Couture in Houston, Texas. How has your job in the marketing industry affected the way you approached starting your blog, Perpetual Perfection?
It’s funny, Perpetual Perfection actually started in college as a creative outlet from the never-ending sea of papers and projects. My short career has taught and still is teaching me brand development. The most important tidbit I’ve learned is the power of networking. Talk to everyone and tell him or her where you see yourself going in life. It’s how I landed this amazing opportunity!
Your garage apartment is the ideal humble abode! How did you go about finding such a space? How did you know it was a great fit for you?
I actually found it through a blog friend who also went to Alabama. She was moving to London (lucky her!) for a graduate program right when I graduated. I knew it was home the minute I arrived. The exterior is pink; I didn’t need to know anything else!
You’ve managed to make your apartment look a lot roomier than it is. What was the decorating process like when working with such a unique space? How long did it take you to get your home to look the way it does now?
“The Nook” as I call it, is about the size of half a shoebox so decorating was a bit challenging, but I love a good challenge. I really focused on using minimalistic pieces like my King Louis ghost chair, light airy colors, and utilizing negative space.
Did working in the bridal industry affect the way you designed your home? How would you describe your decorating style? Where do you look for inspiration?
Oh, without a doubt! The bridal industry is all about texture, elegance, and timelessness, which are all things I wanted to bring into my first home. I would call “The Nook” feminine chic with a Texas twist. I find my inspiration from many places, but I tend to look to at my favorite designers like Ralph Lauren, Miles Redd, & Diamond & Baratta.
What items for the home would you say are most important to invest in? What items do you recommend saving on?
I read somewhere to invest in fabrics that are close to your skin and skimp on the ones you do not touch often. I quite agree with that statement. For example, Egyptian cotton in your yummy sheets is far more important than your drapes. My rule is to invest in pieces with classic lines and furniture you can paint or recover. I hit the bargain stores for the trends.
Do you consider yourself a DIYer? If so, what pieces did you do yourself?
I consider myself more of a DIY decorator more than a “home improvement gal.” I have done my fair share of DIY in my apartment, including my bookshelves, coffee tables, and dresser. A can of spray paint is always a good friend to have at arms reach.
What is your favorite budget-friendly piece in your home and why?
I have to say my coffee tables because of the fun memory behind them. There is a big antique festival twice a year in Round Top, Texas, and it’s a tradition attend in my family. My sister and I had such a fun day shopping for my apartment, and we found them at such a great price.
What do you love most about living in Houston? Any favorite spots you’d like to share with our readers?
Houston is my hometown, but also a big city. I love that it feels that way simultaneously. Rodeo season is without a doubt my favorite time in Houston. Texas Junk Company and Goode Company Barbeque are my two Houston staples for great boots and tasty eats.
Where would you like to see yourself in 5 years?
I see myself working for large bridal house, being insanely happy, and living life to the fullest!
Cat Cantrell is The Everygirl…
Something adventurous and out of the box. I’m the ultimate daredevil so I’m always up for anything a little dangerous!
Best advice you’ve ever received?
“Let go of the timeline.” It was insanely hard for my Type-A personality to do, but I’ve managed to throw it out the window. Life has become exponentially more wonderful since that puppy is in the rear view.
An African Safari. Hands down.
If you could have lunch with any woman, who would it be and what would you order?
Laura Bush because she always handles herself with such grace and she’s a Texas gal after all. We’d enjoy a lovely steak and creampuffs for dessert.
TV Console: Marshall’s Home Goods
Desk Agenda: Whitney English Day Designer
Euro Shams: Caitlin Wilson Textiles
Desk Calendar: Inslee
Coffee Mug on Desk: Ashley Brooke Designs
Lucite Chair: Marshall’s Home Goods
Honeycomb Lamps: Target
Some Girls Are Just Born With Glitter In Their Veins Print: iSee Noise
Love Print: MadeByGirl