I first met Lisa, aka “The Nail Lady” or “The Purple Lady” a few years back while visiting my sister in Roanoke, VA.  Lisa does my sister, Mary Ann’s nails – has for many years.  In fact, she did my mother’s nails for many years and still does on occasion when Mom takes field trips with Mary Ann from her new digs at Richfield.  (See my Blog post, Creating Comfort In An Assisted Living Facility.) Lisa boldly lays claim to understanding our family dynamics better than we do.  You see, Lisa doesn’t wear blinders when she works with clients.  She sees what she sees plain and simple.  Oh, the stories she could tell…

Anyway, my sister and my mother both had nail appointments so I tagged along.  Truth be told, I saw this as a fun time to visit with Mom and Mary Ann while enjoying the peace and relaxation of watching them get manicures and pedicures.  We even stopped along the way and picked up munchies for the three of us to enjoy while we were there.   (Lisa is so easy going that when we three women made it a social gathering she was fine!)

Loving the color purple

Photo credit: Cathy McAden

Now remember, I am an Interior Decorator.  Imagine my surprise when I walked in the front door of her home and salon (the salon is built on the back of the house).  Her salon being an extension of her home should have been my first clue as to the unique world I was entering!   The world of “The Purple Lady”.

Purple, and lots of it was everywhere.  I mean E.V.E.R.Y.W.H.E.R.E.!!!

Oddly enough, I found it incredibly charming.  Then I entered the doors to her salon…

Where are Ouiser, Shelby and gang?

Stepping into Lisa’s salon was like being smack dab in the middle of Truvy’s Hair Salon in the hit movie, Steel Magnolias.   I realized that her salon, like Truvy’s was a meeting place.  It was a place to gather, confide in and receive support from other women.  What fun!  No rush, no clock ticking and no need to hurry.  Going to Lisa’s was an experience in rejuvenation.

Pampering purple pedicures

Photo credit: Cathy McAden

Since that first visit, I have gone back whenever I am in Roanoke and my sister has an appointment.  I wouldn’t miss being treated to Lisa’s world for anything.   Just like Truvy’s salon, Lisa’s shop is sheer delight and you never know who is going to stop in to chat or what is going to happen while you are there.   I love everything about it and now understand how perfectly well her colors match her.

The Psychology of Purple

In the western world, the color purple symbolizes wealth and royalty.  Varying shades of it such as violet symbolize good judgment.  The color purple is very often the favorite color of adolescent girls.  As adults, it symbolizes creativity and eccentricity.

Well Lisa, no surprise there!  You fit the bill for being creative, eccentric and still in touch with your inner child!

Purple has both mental and physical affects on us as well.  As I stated in my Blog post, The Power of Color, color affects both mood and behavior.  Purple’s affects are to calm, uplift and offer a sense of spiritual peacefulness to those exposed to it.

No wonder Lisa does so well in her chosen career.  By the way, most of her clients have been with her for over the entire span of her career, close to twenty years or so.  I have no doubt that her soothing surroundings add tremendously to her success.  Of course, there’s something to her listening ear, too!

Nail Lady's purple chair

Photo credit: Cathy McAden

Funny what color can do to folks.  Lisa told me that one time she decided to repaint her salon.  She changed it to a really shocking pink.  Lisa told me that it was fascinating to observe the changes in her clients.  While sitting and getting nails and toes done, many clients acted moody and irritated just like Ousier Boudreaux (played by Shirley MacLaine in Steel Magnolias) when in one scene she summed up her sourpuss attitude by saying, “I’m not crazy, I’ve just been in a bad mood 40 years”.  Lisa absolutely believes the bold pink affected her clients in ways they didn’t even realize so what did she do?  She repainted the salon the soothing violet!  Attitudes went back to normal instantaneously.

She’s proud as a peacock!

Exotic print chairs

Photo credit: Cathy McAden

When I first decided to write about Lisa and how she lives in a world of purple, I visualized a peacock.  Strutting her stuff just like a peacock showing all its living color, Lisa is the perfect example of someone true to her spirit.  Not only that but, a peacock usually has some teal in its body and guess what color Lisa retires to every evening in her most personal space, her bedroom?  Teal, of course!  Like a peacock, Lisa spreads her beauty for all to experience.

You go girl!   Keep spreading to others your multitude of gifts all the while immersing them in calming shades of purple!

To life…

And now for the back-story:

Larry the Peacock

“Larry” Photo credit: Mary Ann McAden

As I said, when I visualize Lisa I think of a peacock.  So, I wanted to use a shot of one for the opening picture.  Since resident photographer Susan Muehl had not yet captured the beauty of one for me in nature, I knew I was out of luck and would have to use something else for the opening picture and so I readied the post with a picture of a beautiful purple flower.  To my absolute surprise, the next day Mary Ann randomly texted me a picture of a peacock that had appeared in her yard from where we don’t know.  The peacock seems quite tame and has been named “Larry”.  I call this “Synchronicity at its finest”.  I needed a peacock and Larry showed up!

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Jamie Balzer

About Jamie Balzer

Jamie has worked in the field of interior decorating for over 10 years and has owned B&A Interiors, LLC for almost as long. Partnered with her daughter, Sammi Blake, Jamie has been honored to work in homes and businesses across the country. Knowledge and experience is but part of what she has to offer. As a young girl, Jamie intuitively understood that the placement of things, the color of things, and the arrangement of things evoke certain feelings. Working together with this knowledge, experience and intuition Jamie has answered the call to her life’s purpose- teaching the spiritual truth of what she believes- “Everything begins in the home”. As a branch of B&A Interiors, LLC, Living In Perfect Harmony emerged to teach her philosophy. Jamie believes, “if you live peacefully and beautifully at home, you are well, your family is well and that helps to make the world a better place”. Jamie's most passionate role is as a mother and grandmother. Jamie currently lives and works in the Chicago area but also continues her business in Charlotte, NC as both a decorator and a homespace coach. She is certified in Reiki Therapy which she believes broadens her success as a homespace coach. Jamie is available for private consultations, lectures and seminars.

9 thoughts on “

  1. Jamie…… I loved this story. Larry was a special gift to a special lady in her time of need. Seriously – I would love going to Lisa’s too. Think if I ever get there I’ll bring Lori with me. She is a peacock in my life. She is the sister I never had.

    Joy Stark

    • Seriously Joy, it was incredible how Larry appeared at just the right time. Life is truly amazing. As for visiting Lisa, she is an incredible joy to be around and my guess is she has no clue what she does for those around her. You should experience her and her world of color! How lucky you are to have Lori, I know first hand she is a remarkable woman. Keep reading…

  2. I found out today that Larry’s name is Pete. He is a pet of someone a few neighborhoods over from where I live. He is very friendly, my grandkids love to feed him. How weird that he showed up at my house when you needed a picture of a peacock. I didn’t even know you needed a picture of Larry/Pete, I just sent it to you because how many people have a peacock show up on at there house. As for Lisa (was there Wed.) she quickly becomes your friend, plus does a great job on your nails. Shades of purple are everywhere, it makes her home/shop fit here perfectly. She even has a purple Christmas tree for the holidays. : )

    • Well, at least we know where Larry (OK, Pete) came from. What a moment when I heard the click on my phone that I had a text and it was from you – a picture of a peacock. You know I don’t believe in coincidences. Life gives us what we want, we need only ask…
      And, you are so right about Lisa. She is a friend and has certainly added to my life! Doing a great job in her career is what I call more toppings on the sundae of life!

  3. You are right on about Lisa, I’ve been a client of Lisa’s for many years. Going to her salon can be such fun if she is in a good mood (she usually is). She has a quick wit and has been know to feed her clients as they soak for their pedicure. We love the purple lady!

    • I am so glad you are commenting! Thank you so much. Having people like Lisa in our lives adds amazing color! And, I mean that both literally and figuratively!

  4. Thank you so much for the wonderful, well written blog. I have never felt so special, it made me laugh and cry. I love my business and my clients, they are my friends and soon become like family. As for the purple, I think everyone should have a little purple in their lives. A little whimsy will make you happy!! Thank you again for making my day!

    • Lisa, thank you for allowing me to share a glimpse of “The Purple Lady’s World” with others. Not only do you define your true essence and let it refine you through how you live in both your homespace and workspace but, you bring multitudes of joy to those that get to be a part of it. Keep it going. There are few places I have gone that are so welcoming. You have the perfect combination for others to feel home in!

  5. Well, I’m so glad to know that Larry/Pete has a real home, he sure is a handsome fella. Lisa- Your shop sounds amazing, I know you do great work because I have seen your finished product many times on Aunt MaryAnn, so the color purple is working well for you!

    When I was a child into my teen years I was so obsessed with the color purple that for Christmas one year I asked for a set of purple Christmas lights to hang in my bedroom. I got them and they actually looked great, my friends were jealous! I even got a purple toilet seat cover for my bathroom, that was a joke from my mother but it was cute!

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