Tag Archives: Gay

Homepolish & One Kings Lane Give Gray Malin a Home Makeover

Photos by Nicole Lamotte, Courtesy One Kings Lane


Dear Reader,

By now, you’ve probably heard of Gray Malin (pictured above with his hubz Jeff and my scaryface), the brilliant photographer who took these gorgeous photographs:





As you can see, these photos are right up my alley. We both love Miami colors, tropical locations, and the coastal aesthetic. You can check out the rest of his beautiful portfolio online.

Homepolish hooked me up with the opportunity to design Gray’s home, starting with the living room and outdoor spaces. In collaboration with One Kings Lane (who sponsored the project and donated their lovely home furnishings), we created a preppy space with the color and sophistication Gray and his husband Jeff wanted (Sidenote: they are the cutest couple in the world. I ogled their wedding book and literally wanted to die because it was so sweet).


We selected this elegant sofa because Gray wanted something that was both comfortable and sophisticated. Quick tip: if you’re looking for a comfy sofa make sure you seek one out with lots of down in the cushions. This will mean you will have to reshape the cushions every day but will make it way softer and more inviting. The sofa we chose is called the Dunsmuir (all products in this post are sourced from One Kings Lane).


The crazy gorgeous Geometric Étagères were a game-changer and immediately made the space look more beautiful, the ceilings higher. I styled them using Gray’s collection of family photos, art, and objects, and trays and accessories from One Kings Lane.


I love that dog portrait, kinda wanted to steal it.


One of the challenges of this project was keeping it colorful while not making it look like a rainbow exploded all over the house. Gray loves color. I love color. But his main goal was a sophisticated, grown up space so I had to keep the color intentional and well-curated. Luckily, these beautiful nightstands served as the perfect console tables flanking the bay window AND they echoed the gorgeous colors in Gray’s Swimmer Photo Series, which we placed above (Sidenote: decorating for an artist is the BEST because you don’t have to worry about finding art, which is normally totally annoying and hard and no one wants to spend any money on it).


I’d by lying if I said these chairs weren’t my favorite part of this project. I am a huge Milo Baughman fan, so these Baughman-inspired pieces speak directly to my tender, needy heart. I love how modern and out-of-control chic these are (I totally want them for my own home).


See??? I told you those chairs were the best thing in the world! Also, those roman shades. I had them custom made for Gray by The Shade Shoppe and they are so lux that I just want to tear them down and wear them as a tuxedo to a royal wedding.

You can check out a detailed behind-the-scenes story about the makeover on Gray’s Blog. Also, check out these links:

To get design services: Homepolish

To source the items seen at Gray’s House: One Kings Lane Gray Malin Homepolish Sale

To see more of Gray’s beautiful work: Gray Malin





Filed under Decor

Nate Berkus & Jeremiah Brent Have Gone Bananas

Photographs by Mikael Jansson


Dear Gay Diary,

This isn’t exactly hot-off-the-press news, but I discovered recently that everyone’s favorite design powercouple Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent are part of a new Banana Republic ad campaign. Thus, I had to share the totally cute pics of them canoodling, cuddling, and just generally making every other couple on earth look like moldy dog food. Thanks guys! Of course these images fill me with the normal amount of jealousy, bewilderment, and outrage. But they also just kind of made me glad to see a cute gay couple in an ad like it ain’t no thang. The images were shot by Mikael Jansson and are beautifully done. It appears that they were shot at their totally ugly house, which I would love to break into and live in until I am dramatically removed by violent police force.






They’re so cute, right? Someday, when they die, I plan to taxidermy their dead bodies and put them in my living room as the ULTIMATE interior design accessories. That’ll teach them to keep their out-of-control dimples and get-lost-in-me eyes to themselves.



Filed under Style

Hello Mr Magazine

Photographs by Sean Gin


Dear Hello Mr Magazine,

I am glad you finally exist. I was introduced to  your founder, Ryan Fitzgibbons, by Richard Haines, my friend the fashion illustrator. I was then introduced to the magazine itself, which is really a breath of fresh air. It describes itself as a magazine for men who date men, but I feel like it’s filled with such great stories and such beautiful images that it will appeal to everyone. These promo graphics express the magazine’s sensibility:






For years, Gay magazines have been cheesy and gross and filled with fake tan waxy steroid dudes. It’s nice to have something that represents a different side of our culture. Ryan Fitzgibbon’s background as a graphic designer clearly came in handy in the creation of this publication – it’s beautifully designed, incredibly pleasing to ogle. Here are a few of my favorite spreads from the current issue:







Now go subscribe. Support this magazine so it will continue to exist so that I can continue to read it.



Filed under Style

My Week in Instagramz

Dear Diary,

It’s been a crazy few weeks. Well it’s basically been nuts since I joined Homepolish in December. Like good crazy. Working seven days a week loving what I’m doing crazy. I hired an intern to help me do blog stuff, which is exciting. He’s a totally awesome, insanely talented photographer named Sean who I’m really happy to have found (I’ll be featuring his work next week, excited to share it with you). Everything in my life has been art and design lately, and that’s really exciting.


I finished a giant painting based on a paint-by-numbers seascape and hung it over my bed. Even though I live in California, I have this fantasy about living in California. It’s weird, I think it has something to do with living away for so long. So I love anything coastal.


This gold metallic Japanese screen had been hanging above my bed, but now that I moved the giant painting in there, the screen was homeless. So I brought it into my dining room to be friends with my Lindsay Adelman chandelier. So far they’re getting along great.


Speaking of coastal, my beach house project in Venice is going extremely well. The style of the whole project is modern and minimal, which normally not my thing but I love it so much I want to totally redo my apartment to be modern and minimal now. I snagged this mid-century inspired side table from West Elm and kind of want to make out with it.


The view from the beach house. Revolting, right?


I went to a HelloLA party thrown by the editors of Hello Mr, a new publication for men who date men that is my new favorite magazine. It’s nice to finally have a magazine for gay dudes that isn’t cheesy and gross and full of steroid weirdos. The party was at the new Ace Hotel downtown, which is kind of like a cramped remix of the Palm Springs location, minus the large STD pool deck in they have in the desert.


A spread from Issue 2 of Hello Mr. It’s such a beautifully done magazine.


I went to the LA Art Contemporary at the Hangar in Santa Monica, which was totally amazing and fun and inspiring. Just lots of great galleries from around the world in one space, showing the best contemporary art. I’ll be doing a full write up on in it in the next few weeks.


This piece is by Jung Lee. I feel like it came out of my brain.


A David Shrigley piece The Thing Quarterly put out and had on sale at the LA Art Book Fair.


A stupid/amazing t-shirt LA Art Book Fair.  I hate my body, so I had to have it.


This zine I snatched at the LA Art Book Fair needs no further explanation.


I went to the most ridiculous Super Bowl party ever. Well since last year’s ridiculous Super Bowl party. It was at the same glamourhouse that I wrote this iconic post about.


The hosts of the Super Bowl party, who, concidentally both look like He-Man, are super sweet. You’d be super sweet too if this was what you woke up to every day…


I was walking down the street near Commissary Coffee the other day when I noticed these disgustingly beautiful flowers. People always talk about how ugly this city is. And honestly they’re probably right. If you’re looking for the ugly you will definitely find it in our nasty strip malls and dead-tree sidewalks. But if you fixate on those things that are beautiful, you can have a pretty gorgeous experience of this city.


My week ended back at the beach house, where I spent a few days primping for my clients first night’s stay. The only thing missing now are a few chandeliers and his art collection, which is totally crazy and amazing.


Um, speaking of incredible art, these Sandra Chervier collages (on the wall) are just lovely.


Finally, I had Sean take this awkward picture of me on the beach to tell everyone to go to the Hello Love party Hello Mr is throwing in New York. I’d totally be there if I was in town…

All in all, a crazy good week. Everything is happening at the exact same time, and I am thankful.



Filed under Life

Have Hookup Apps Ruined Gay Romance?


Dear Gays,

I’ve noticed a trend amongst my friends. Not necessarily a new trend, but one that is growing nonetheless. A lot of people are meeting new guys, new love interests, new hookups on hookup apps. It’s not like the old days when you had to put on a decent outfit, go to a bar, and use your in-person social skills to make a connection. Now you can just go on Grindr, shop for a guy, and hookup with the best one you can get. It’s a confusing world, because the more available everything becomes, the less satisfying every interaction becomes. I have no problem with people (safely) exploring their sexuality with strangers from the internet or mobile apps. What troubles me is the disconnect I see in the Gays I know – a strong desire for love and companionship combined with an emotional/sexual ADD. What is going on with us? Why did every single gay couple I know break up last year? Why does it seem like all the Gay guys I know are struggling to find romantic success when there are so many readily available, quality guys around? I have a few ideas…

The Grindrizing of, Like, Everything

About four years ago, a long time before I met my last boyfriend, I had Grindr installed on my phone. I met one dude on it, we hooked up, and then he never spoke to me again. He was super cute. Super smart. Had a sexy profession (architect). I really liked him. I wanted to date him. I contacted him a few times afterward, but never heard back and took the hint and moved on. Being the most overly sensitive homosexual in the world, was a little hurt by it. Not like crazy hurt, but hurt enough to be like “I’m never doing that again!” Clearly, I was on the wrong app. Like it’s kind of ridiculous to expect someone you meet on Grindr to be looking for his husband, it’s a sex app.

A few months ago, at the behest of my friends and family who were tired of my lovelorn post-breakup wallowing, I joined OKCupid. The site was described by one of my friends as “the only legit dating site.” OKCupid supposedly attracts the type of Gay that wants a long-term relationship. So you’d imagine my shock and horror when the first person to message me on the site was THE SAME DUDE WHO STOOD ME UP FROM GRINDR. What?!? Right? What was even better is that he didn’t even remember me, meaning that he had hooked up with so many dudes on Grindr that they all kind of blended together, creating one big bland boy soup.

I did what any self-respecting Gay would do. I told him that my name was Logan and that I was a street artist from Palos Verdes who came from a wealthy British family that owned the majority of stock in Virgin Galactic. We chatted for weeks without him remembering who I was. Until I met him at a party downtown and he asked for my number and “Orlando” came up when he entered it. It was my little way of passive aggressively messing with him for hurting my feelings three years ago. And it felt awesome. Yes, I am a crazy person.

For me, the most troublesome part of Grindr has always been its proximity to commerce. In the Grindr economy, your body is your currency. You use the app to shop the catalogue of headless, shirtless torsos, to find one that you can afford (meaning someone who is at a similar fitness level). For someone like me with notorious body issues, this clearly presents a problem. But there’s also something kind of gross about it. Like emotionless and clinical. Totally the antithesis of romantic.

I realized from that experience that I was too sensitive to deal with apps like Grindr. I know that if I used them enough, I’d desensitize myself to the rejection. Which sounds like a good thing but I like sensitivity. It helps you feel life. I like not being the kind of callous jerk that would sleep with someone then never talk to him again. But there’s something perhaps even worse than being desensitized to rejection is being desensitized to the excitement of sex. If sex is so easy to procure, has it lost some of its luster? Isn’t the excitement of sex that it’s kind of rare, that it’s kind of a secret? Maybe I have a closet fetish or something…

Screen Shot 2013-12-12 at 12.55.57 PM

Trading Pics

Another aspect of the selfie/me/me/me culture we live in is the readiness at which prospective dates send you, often unsolicited, totally explicit pictures of themselves. I have mixed feelings about this. I mean, who doesn’t want hot naked pictures of guys sent to your phone that you can look at from the comfort of your own home, procured with with zero effort? But getting dick pics is, perhaps, the least romantic thing that can happen to you. Also, it leaves no excitement for when you, like, actually hookup. It’s the opposite of mysterious. And mystery is sexy.

When I told one of my younger, more gay-app savvy friends that I was writing this post, he was like “Um, this is way old news.” Which I suppose is true, but think about the fact that I’ve been off the market, in a relationship, for a few years. Two years ago people weren’t really using Scruff. It was just Grindr, Adam4Adam, and Manhunt. Now it seems like there’s a gay hookup app for every single Gay subculture.  The last few years have seen a huge uptick in the ubiquity of Gay-sex-right-now apps. They went from novelty to necessity in the past two years.

Gays, and people in general, have and always will hookup. Meet people at parties, go home with them, and do stuff. (Sidenote: Have you ever been to a straight party before? They’re crazy. I once saw some Straights having sex outside, in the middle of the party. It was insane). But it seems now it is increasingly more convenient, because of the advent of systems like Grindr and Tinder to hook up with randos that you’re never going to see again. Perhaps I have particularly slutty friends, but the number of them on these apps, the number of them using them regularly, puts me in the minority of uptight dorks who do not use them.

I haven’t abstained from using them because I think they’re morally wrong. I am all for people enjoying their bodies, expressing their sexuality, being free, having as much sex as is humanly possible. I abstain mostly because I don’t want what they’re selling. I have little interest in hooking up with strangers because that feels weird to me. Perhaps because I lack emotional security and am a late bloomer. And because I enjoy how awesome it feels to have sex with someone you actually love. It’s an experience that can’t be replicated through casual random sex, at least not for me. For those of you who have the intellectual detachment to do that, I salute you. I’m too much of a baby for all that.

I have more than a few qualms with gay hookup apps/sites. Mainly that they fill one void while neglecting another. While they satisfy sexual needs, they leave us blank on the emotional ones. And, I’d argue they actually make us a little more callous towards one another, more rapidly judgmental about each other’s physical appearance. In real life, if someone approaches you and expresses interest, you have to use some tact to say no. Online, all you have to do is block them, or say something rude and dismissive. Or say something racist (anyone who has seen Grindr knows what I’m talking about). Men become totally disposable. If one doesn’t work out you can just move onto the next one. It seems like a rather meaningless way of going about searching for intimacy.



Intimacy. That is kind of the crux of the conversation. There is something inherently intimate about sex. By definition, it’s impossible to detach sex from intimacy. In fact, “intimacy” is listed as a synonym for “sex.” This gets a little deep into semantics, but I think it’s important. It makes sense that sex, because of physical proximity and the nature of the act itself, is an inherently intimate experience.

But “intimacy” is also strongly associated with “love.” Of course sex can be intimate without connoting love, but how intimate? Are we missing out on some deeper form of connection by allowing ourselves to have less intimate, less love-oriented sex? Does having tons of sex make up for this loss of intimacy? This I’m asking as a genuine question. Is sex without love meaningless? And if not, why does it feel so empty to have sex with someone you don’t love? Or am I a huge puritanical freak for thinking that it feels empty? Have I been so culturally brainwashed that I no longer distinguish what is natural human behavior?

I have refrained from downloading any of these apps, so all my anecdotes come from observing my friends and their approach to their sex lives as well as my limited past Grindr-ing. A rash of strangely-timed breakups last year left me and many of my committed friends single (Side note: If you live in the metropolitan Los Angeles or New York regions, are Gay, and have a boyfriend, lock him in a cage until further notice. You will thank me later). My concern is not that these apps are turning everyone into sluts. Sluts are great. My concern is for the emotional well-being of our community. I notice the same friends that use these apps feeling down and lonely, frustrated that they are not finding lasting relationships.

And yes I know how troublesome a statement that is. Describing promiscuous Gays as sad and alone has a long history of homophobia and heterosexism attached to it. For me it’s not about how many guys these apps allow you to hook up with and the ease at which it happens. It’s more about how flippant it is. How little our culture in general talks about love and intimacy. How often we talk about sex and hookups instead. And this isn’t just a Gay thing. Watch any episode of New Girl and you’ll see countless hookup references.


There’s An App for Everything. Except, Like, Actual Romance.

Basically what I’m saying is that I think everyone should be thoughtful about how they approach using technology to find sex, love, romance, intimacy, or all of the above. My biggest pet peeve are guys who run around whining about how no one in the Gay community wants a long term relationship and yet those same whiners are on Grindr all the time, trading pics. Yes, I know you can meet guys to date on Grindr. In fact, two of my favorite readers, a couple that have been together for a few years, met that way. But I don’t think that generally speaking, the app fosters a community of guys looking for true love and companionship. They’re looking for sex. If you want to date, look elsewhere. Maybe even the old fashioned way, meeting someone at a party, like, in real life. Which is annoying because you have to leave your house and stuff, but that’s good exercise anyway.

Finally, I recognize that I am totally hypocritical here. Some people reading this are going to think I am a Gay whore because I hooked up with a stranger from Grindr. Some people reading this are going to think I am totally puritanical and uptight and super boring. You have to keep to what you’re comfortable with, and don’t feel like you have to keep up with what everyone else is or is not doing. If you’re seeking intimacy, go about it in a tactful way. Don’t be like “here’s a picture of my genitals, let’s meet up!” It’s been my experience that you kind of have to become the type of guy you’re looking for in order to attract that guy. Meaning if you’re looking for someone who is really interested in creating an actual romantic bond, you have to shut off your boy ADD and really be open to pursuing a relationship, regardless of the fact that there is an endless stream of hot guys out there to hook up with.

But have Gay hookup apps destroyed Gay romance? A lot of people I interviewed about this subject said they thought Gay romance never existed. That due to our history of being ostracized by the mainstream we’ve never really developed a sense of open, positive love affairs. Instead, we’ve sought out sex in bars or other areas we knew we could find men interested in men, and those spaces function much the same way that these apps function, allowing us to efficiently get off and avoid actual emotional connections.

This kind of means we are at a cultural crossroads. For the first time ever we are feeling enough acceptance to move on from just having the freedom to have sex to actually having the freedom to ask for emotional fulfillment. As men, this is far more difficult a matter to discuss. Talking about sex makes you sound virile and cool, talking about the need for love and emotional satisfaction has been something traditionally associated with women. Which is in and of itself problematic, considering all the sexism and gender stereotyping that arises when you say love and emotional fulfillment are for women only.

I think it is time that we acknowledge our own need for love. These apps (Grindr, Tinder, Scruff, etc) are not helping us move forward. They are allowing us to passively seek out sexual encounters, brush each other aside, and create an environment in which partners seems disposable, replaceable. I think it’s time we asked for more of ourselves and of each other.

If you want to find love, if you truly want romance, like John Cusack holding up a boom box romance, don’t go looking to a sex app to find it.


PS: Since I began writing this post (which took me some time because it’s a very confusing topic), I joined Tinder. I haven’t met anyone from it but I have used it to kill time while stuck in traffic…

Images Via: Cute Gay Couples [Except the one from James Franco’s Instagram]


Filed under Life

What Are People Thinking About You?

Photo via Filth & Wisdomtumblr_mx91nkIKHS1rs81xfo1_1280

Dear Reader,

A friend of mine shared this story with me recently that I like too much to keep to myself. It begins now.

I was dating this guy, this handsome, confident, outgoing guy who lives in Miami. He totally wined and dined me and flew me out to go to a wedding with him in Florida. He introduced me to his friends, doted on me, and made me feel really attractive. 

[Sidenote: Like me, the friend relaying this story has a warped self-image, is totally self-conscious, and has questionable self-esteem].

While I was in Florida, we went to a huge suburban mall.

[Another note: my friend is tall, well-manicured, and dresses impeccably… Doesn’t necessarily look like he fits in at a suburban South Florida mall].

At the mall I started to feel really self-conscious. Was I dressed to gay? Was my walk too effeminate, too swishy? Was everyone looking at how weird I was? How out-of-place? Was I sticking out too much? I started to get visibly nervous, at which point my boyfriend looked at me and asked me what was going on.

“Everyone is staring at how weird I am.”

“Everyone is staring at how gorgeous you are,” he replied.

“No, they think I look gay and out-of-place. Like I’m some weirdo the likes of which they’ve never seen.”

“Well you can choose to believe that. Or choose to believe they are looking at you because you are beautiful. It’s your choice. You’ll never know what they’re really thinking. So you can choose the option of feeling terrible about yourself, like you don’t fit in. Or you can choose to feel confident, like everyone is looking at you in admiration. Which one is going to get you the better result? Which one makes you happy?”

I thought about it, and something clicked for me. I have to change the way I think.

I love this story for a lot of reasons. Firstly, I love it because I love my friend and I love hearing about someone calling him beautiful. Second, I love it for the lesson it tells. Why go around feeling like everyone is judging you, thinking you’re weird? Why go around worrying that you’re out-of-place? You’ll never know what’s going on in everyone else’s heads. So why not assume the best? Why not assume everyone can see that you are as beautiful, intelligent, and worthy as you are.

Merry Christmas.



Filed under Life

Homme/Maker: Richard Haines

Photography by Jill Ulicney


Dear Travel Diary,

I came to New York with one goal in mind. To meet people I find inspiring. And I really lucked out. One of my favorite artists is an illustrator named Richard Haines and he agreed to meet with me. I discovered his work a few years ago in the New York Times  style section. I quickly became obsessed with his fashion illustrations. The beauty of his work comes in its gesture, how a few simple lines create movement, weight. He’s collaborated with all the biggest names in fashion from Prada to J.Crew and GQ. Richard shares his work regularly on his blog, What I Saw Today, which I look at whenever I feel like life is getting boring.

Richard began his career as a fashion designer working for Perry Ellis during the 80s when it was the “place to be.” He continued to design for Calvin Klein, Bill Blass, and was the creative director of Nautica. Eventually, he moved on to illustration, a career he finds much more fulfilling. He’s been at it for years, and his visibility and success have only grown as he’s progressed in his career. He’s currently blowing up, so I was stoked to get into his studio to discuss his work with him.

Richard works and lives in Bushwick, Brooklyn. Which is the new Williamsburg now that the old Williamsburg is now  Manhattan and Manhattan is now Fresno Fashion Fair Mall. I’m not sure if I’ve ever been to Bushwick before this meeting but I can honestly say that I am now obsessed with it. As I exited the M train at Myrtle Avenue, someone with a boom box was blasting To Be Real by Cheryl Lynn and I totally felt like I was in Paris Is Burning. [Sidenote: Can we talk about how Paris Is Burning has become totally ingrained in urban Gay culture? Like you go out and everyone is, like, voguing? I saw this film (about drag balls in 80s New York) in college and loved it. I must say that as far as cultural influencers go, this is a particularly good one].

Ok now that I’ve established that Bushwick is awesome and that Paris Is Burning has spawned an 80s drag underground obsessed generation of Gays, let’s get to Richard’s studio:


Richard’s studio is full of eye candy for anyone who likes art. There are drawings everywhere, from floor to ceiling. And I wanted to steal them. All of them. But I didn’t.



I kind of wish the boy in the blue drawing would come to life like in that Take On Me music video so that we could fall in love and he would drag me into his cartoon-illustration world and force me to live as a fashion illustration until I die.



I want that “Ourboro” shirt.




I covet this giant drawing. It’s 4′ x 6′.


I had the pleasure of ogling on of Richard’s rare Prada books. Look how crazed my eyes are!






I suppose the most exciting thing about Richard’s studio is the possibility. Like the desk full of tools to make more beautiful drawings just like the ones all over the walls. There is something about the immediacy of Richard’s work that just makes you want to see more of it. All of his drawings are “one-offs.” Meaning he doesn’t draw and redraw them over and over again. He draws them once, quickly, and moves on to the next drawing. I’d imagine this gives them their emphatic appeal, their casual sensuality.



I ended the conversation by asking Richard “ARE YOU GAY???” like a total weirdo. This is something I like to do if a conversation is too comfortable. I guess before I got there I assumed he was Gay because he draws all these cute boys. [Sidenote: He is gay. And that’s none of your business but apparently all of mine]. Anyway, he had a lot of advice about love and life. So in addition to learning about his amazing art practice, I also got some insight into life from someone I greatly admire. You see? Meeting strangers can be fun! Try it today, maybe you’ll learn something about art. Or guys. Or BOTH!

For me, there is nothing more exciting or inspirational than seeing creativity in action. Seeing a space where new ideas are sketched out, new art made. My afternoon with Richard was greatly appreciated, and exactly what I came to New York for.



Filed under Art