Why I Hate, That I LOVE Nine by Design

{Cortney and Robert Novogratz}

The fabulous Novogratz family,
and their hit show on Bravo,
Nine by Design,
has me tuning in each week,
and loathing myself.
{here is why}

1.  My rationalizations for leaving New York City are gone!

It’s no secret that I miss living in New York City.
Like many a suburbanite,
I rationalize this choice by convincing myself
that it’s just too hard, expensive and all together impossible
to raise a family in the city.
And..hello..I have three children!

Cortney and Robert Novogratz have SEVEN!

 Seven gorgeous children,
running around and growing up in the most
amazing spaces and interiors, designed by their parents.
The two principals of the design firm,
Design Sixx.

Like this uber hip town house.

And this ridiculously cool roof top basket ball court.

2.  I can’t seem to lose those last ten pounds of “baby weight”.
I had my son almost four years ago.

Cortney just had her seventh baby.
Oh! Good for you Cortney!

3.  I regret going to Law School, and rationalize
that I am too old now
to go back to school for interior design.

Cortney and Robert are self taught.


4.  I was an English Major with a
Minor in Fine Art.

Here is some of the art they own…


and, look…
they even published
a book!


My reasons could go on and on…but I will sum it up like this:
When I tune into reality shows like The Jersey Shore, I get
to feel all smug about myself.
Watching Nine by Design has quite the opposite affect on me.

Oh, and speaking of the Jersey Shore…

they’ve made that fab too!

{Bungalow 24}
exasperating, isn’t it…

will you be tuning in tonight?
{you know I will}

images via:  DreamersDen; NYSocialDiary; Sketch42; Bravo; gooleimages; DesiretoInspire

Leave a Comment


  1. The Buzz wrote:

    Love Nine By Design – my new guilty pleasure! I don't think you need to go back to school for interior design – you're more of a designer than you think you are!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  2. Debra wrote:

    I will definately tune in tonight-upon your suggestion. I keep forgetting that it's on.
    Yeah-they do make it all look so easy!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  3. How stunning is that art! xx

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  4. I love it too!! But here's the deal..I love to watch it, don't want to live it!!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  5. See, I'm with bluehydrangea… I am sure they have their own set of problems… and a butt load of help.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  6. i definitely need to find somewhere to watch it!!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  7. MaryBeth wrote:

    I have the series dvr'd. I wanted to hate them but after watching the first episode I couldn't help but like them and their style.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  8. Cashon&Co wrote:

    something about that show won't let me like it. I don't know what it is. It's so unrealistic or something. 🙂 but i loved your comparisions…..too funny! another great post girlfriend! :)xoox

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  9. wow, have to try and find some episodes on the net for that! not showing over here yet! yep, i had a choice between Graphic Design and Interior Design..chose Graphic but also love Interior oh so much! 😉

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  10. i feel your bitter regret and acrid envy. the green bile is rising in my throat as i write this.
    i too wanted to hate these fartwads…but instead i love them. so far…
    they seem semi normal for such a crazy lifestyle.
    it just goes to show that when you do what you love you will find success..
    here's the question though…where did they start from?

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  11. It's never too late! Go back to school (I know- easier said than done!)and take a weekend in the city to revel in your old haunts 😉

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  12. I know *exactly* how you feel.
    why oh why didn't i go to design school? and now? regardless of the fact that i'm too old, it seems like everyone and their cousin is a "designer." not sure there's room for one more.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  13. The Zhush wrote:

    MFAMB: Annoyingly enough…from what I read, just regular Midwestern Middleclass folks!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  14. they seem pretty talented those two, and i love their art. i was researching an artist the other day and found that they own several pieces, they have great taste too!jxx

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  15. Melanie wrote:

    I caught about 30 minutes of it late the other night, and I kind of love them. I don't know if I could be as laid back as they are with 7 kids, a home reno and trying to get my entire family around NYC. But I think they are endearing and I will be tuning in! Let me just add that to all the other crap that is on my DVR, HA!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  16. Staley Mc wrote:

    I love it too! Last week I was SO SO jealous of that new house they were moving into. What a dream. I also picked up their book from the library the other day-Amazing of course!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  17. That was funny. Oops, I completely forgot to watch their show, but now we are on a self-imposed TV hiatus. Perhaps it is for the best that I don't see it. 🙂

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  18. Cashon&Co wrote:

    omg. forgot to tell you that when you said the words "squirrel in my pants" from F&P that I burst out laughing aloud…..not many people our age can quote Candace, much less sing that song!!! I have to say that if i'm picking a F&P song, it's Heinz's "evil kind of love"…..
    this must look so wierd to anyone reading this that has no idea about Doofenshmirtz

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  19. I love that family! I read many articles about them and I can’t get enough!
    Beautiful selection! Really love this post!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  20. sketch42 wrote:

    hahaha…. I think we all agree with you here. FYI it is NOT too late to go back to design school. NOT at all… Enroll.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  21. I've heard a lot about this show, but haven't watched it. Having your own business and seven kids has to be a challenge. I think this is one of those "the grass isn't always greener" scenarios. No one knows what struggles go on behind closed doors, I'm sure its not easy for them to make it all work even if they can make it look easy!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  22. You just never mind! I havent seen the show, I've never looked to see if Canadian networks carry it. xx

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  23. daisychain wrote:

    fabulous 🙂

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  24. I missed it last week but I won't miss it tonight !

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  25. charmaine wrote:

    I feel for you. Although I don't regret going to med school(where I met the husband), interior design is what I LOVE to do. Maybe it's not too late for us?!

    We lived in Westchester County for 7 years and we loved it! Great place to raise a family and still close enough to NYC. You still have the best of both worlds!

    Oh, and I love the show too!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  26. You make me laugh!
    I've been intrigued with this couple for years and I can't tune in. We just don't get their show here. So watch, enjoy, and don't feel bad… for a lawyer you have a pretty insane design eye. I would have guessed you were trained in design. You're a natural! xo Erica

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  27. Kathysue wrote:

    Never have regrets and looking back is a bad idea unless you are learning from it. You are amazingly talented and that is a natural gift.In my experience in design you either have the eye or you don't and you DO!! You could so design for clients. I know what you mean about the show, I am so curious about this type of lifestyle since I am a Calif. born and raised girl and have always lived in Suburbia. It is fascinating to me. There has to be a Nanny involved somewhere? and a house keeper!! Lets get real we have all had kids and we know the amount of work it takes. Fun show, so far I am enjoying it. Don't ever let someone or something make you feel badly about yourself. Just look at your blog and how great it is doing. We love you in blogland!! Kathysue
    PS Can you tell I am a FIXER?!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  28. Turbo wrote:

    I caught my wife watching this show the other morning. I couldn't stand to watch very much of it because I coveting their place pretty fiercely.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  29. They make me want to yack with jealousy, yes. But it's like a grisly accident, you can't NOT look (well, actually I can not look at an accident, but you know what I mean). They're so talented!!! Argh! I miss NYC so much, too. Really, there's no place like it. Loved this post.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  30. OMG, your leaving NYC? I would love to be able to live there for at least a year.
    I'm visiting the city in June, first week. Can't wait! need to ask you for a few tips 🙂

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  31. Karena wrote:

    Fist of all ….it is never, never too late, you can start anew at anytime. Women are coming into their own and living several lifetimes in one!

    Second, I adore the art and they absolutely make it the focal point of the rooms design!

    Art by Karena

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  32. Karena wrote:

    Sorry about my spelling, First!!

    Art by Karena

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  33. La Dolfina wrote:

    I'm still ambivalent.
    Nothing is as it looks!
    Their new baby is in for a wild ride though!
    I have to say it's a unique family and those kids are having a very unique childhood experience! One good thing about lots of kids is that they "raise" each other. I'll be watching tonight 🙂

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  34. I love this show. Their talent amazes me. But I totally agree with you, while they are completely inspiring, I'm also jealous. Ugh!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  35. i have never heard of this or seen it. DANG, that is a LOT of kids. yikes. lovely house, though!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  36. pve design wrote:

    …designer you are and comedian as well. I was entertained. I love being entertained at the expense of those around me. I think that makes you a pretty swell designer. I think your designs would humor me.
    Who needs another show where people take themselves all a bit too seriously.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  37. Averill wrote:

    I also love the show — and similarly can't believe how much they accomplish (with good humor in tact!). Gotta say though, I wouldn't feel badly about leaving NYC. Sure, they're raising 7 kids in downtown Manhattan, but in a house they currently have on the market for $25M. For the average New Yorker, 7 kids would just get stuffed into a 2/1.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  38. Josie wrote:

    I haven't watched it yet but am officially stoked to start now! I agree; watching shows like "Jersey Shore" makes me feel so much better about my life, but I feel like this show would make me feel indequate as well!
    xxoo Josie

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  39. Sally J wrote:

    Ok, young one! I started design school at 50…yes the big 5-0 ! I took as many classes as I felt like I needed and when I thought I could teach it better than the instructor, I quit…put that in you ASID pipe and smoke it! If you want to go to school, go. I also got a second masters degree as a single mother with two preteen age kids (who didn't drive!). As for the Novogratz, remember…it's a TV show. What DON"T we see! Ha! Personally, that much chaos would send me over the edge…and I'm pretty good with chaos. Regret is the only emotion that completely stops us in our tracks…As Yoda says, "Do or do not…there is no try!" Tee hee…

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  40. i totally feel you on this! i was watching this show and was like: really…how can they afford that house and all those kids. i know they are big time and all but really? i'm jealous

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  41. Iva wrote:

    Love Nine By Design!!!!!!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  42. Lets keep in mind this is a "reality" show, which is a oxymoron. There may be snippets of reality but we surely don't get to see everything that goes on. And I do adore the show and really it should inspire you. If those self-taught mid-westerners can create that kind of magic …

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  43. yeah for english majors (me, too). here is the thing…so many decor bloggers are attorneys or former attorneys. can we figure that one out…?

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  44. Oh why are dreams and reality often so difficult to harmonise? Seeing people who (apparently) live our dreams doesn't make it easier… Who knows, you might still decide to move back to NY when the kids are grown up (although the idea of really living in a city doesn't seem so appealing to me anymore).

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  45. Kwana wrote:

    Yes, I will be watching and hating myself a bit too for leaving the NYC. But I will also look out at my parking space in the suburbs and realize it is priceless.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  46. Oh Wow! I hadn't seen this show yet… but I need to check it out! How inspiring of her to have 7 kids, seriously? IN NY? Wow. really a challenger to us everywhere.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  47. I can't stop watching. I'm completely in love.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  48. They could possibly be the coolest people ever. Makes my married life seem so dull!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  49. You hit the nail on the head, so to speak! I also tune in with mixed feelings. Seeing all the talent and determination that comes from that couple is quite off setting. I also lived in NYC. I realize that the suburbs do not offer the life that the city does. Culture, people, excitement! I have friends that live in NYC with lots of kids and they will never leave. My hubby will never go back to live there. I do miss it in some ways.
    I guess we need to realize that our style of home (mine is a colonial) and type of neighborhood we live in doesn't define who we are (deep inside that is). We can still have an exciting life that is full. Maybe you have to make more of an effort like go into the city, art shows, theatre, and dinner ect…. Maybe our lives in suburbia is actually very appealing to the Novogratz's with 7 kids. Who knows, if we had a reality show about our lives, they may envy us…with our backyards and space. It doesn't matter where you live because…"Wherever you go, there you are." (Meaning you can't escape yourself, I think). Did you see what they did to that traditional colonial house in Massachusetts? Made it hip and cool! Our home is very traditional on the outside but inside doesn't really follow how people decorate in our "hood". I am sure we are all feeling the same watching that amazing couple. Just go for what ever it is you want to do! I hope this makes sense. I am rambling!

    I will be tuning in too! Can't wait to see what they are up to!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  50. Haha I haven't had a chance to catch it yet. I always see the commercials and make a note to watch but it hasn't happened. Will definitely check in tonight. Or at least will DVR. I have The City to watch. Lame, I know 🙂

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  51. I keep reading about these people all over blog-land! Must remember to watch tonight to see what all the fuss is about 🙂 (although this post was a good indicator)

    …I was doing some blog hopping this afternoon and just found yours – it's great, I'll be following. x

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  52. I-know-what-you-mean-I-must-watch-can't-help-myself.

    How many people would love to have a law degree and be as billiant as you are.

    I know I would.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  53. Flavia Fon wrote:

    Hi Zhu, beautiful images that I'll definitely post at my blog as well. And thanks for visit me as well!! If you want to follow me, be my guest! I'm already following you.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  54. Emily wrote:

    I am also lovin this show, as I love to watch all the reality shows involving NYC. Bravo TV does a great job! Their stamina amazes me, but they love their life and it shows!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  55. Marija wrote:

    So I haven't watched this yet but this has me more curious than ever. You can bet I'll tune in….or record and watch at a later more convenient time – after my long commute home, the scramble to make dinner and then putting my two kids to bed…in the suburbs.

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  56. I haven't watched this show. I love their art! She rocks- 7 kids!

    Published on 4.27.10 · Reply
  57. BookishNYC wrote:

    This show looks great. I LOVE the bathtub with the huge British postage stamp above it. Anyway, as a fellow regretful lawyer — thanks for your review!!

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  58. I hate these people. And I love them.
    Too bad I don't have Bravo. I have to get my fix by hearing about this show from friends!

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  59. Cat wrote:

    Girl…you crack me up:). It is a very amazing life these two are living…I mean, I can hardly get over the 7 kids, how do they manage?!?!?

    xo Cat

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  60. Stephanie wrote:

    You don't need rationalizations – you're pretty fabulous on your own! And 7 kids – hello! I get missing NYC – but it isn't too far away so you can get your fixes.

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  61. sketch42 wrote:

    ok… Nothing here beats PHILOSOPHY MAJOR. I dont think I gave a shit about ANYTHING decor related until I had my own place. AT ALL. ZERO. NIL. I refused gifts of jewelry when I was 16 on the grounds that "I am not a christmas tree"

    Oh… AND I dont envy anyone with 7 kids.

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  62. You're hilarious. So enjoyed the dry humour in this post. xx C

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  63. You really hit a nerve with this post! I go back and forth between loving and not-feeling-the-love with this show. Tonight I really enjoyed it since it was all about celebrating personal style. I think their sense of humor is the *major* reason why they are able to deal with so many challenges, whether they relate to design or raising 7 kids!

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  64. Thank you so much!=) and I love all the photos in this post like usually!

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  65. Never seen it before but now I'm intrigued! Lovely pics!

    xx Vivian @ http://diamondsandtulle.blogspot.com

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  66. Nice pics! I have never seen it, since it's not shown here in Norway. But sounds interesting;)

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  67. qerat wrote:

    Beautiful artwork and of course the bathroom is just great

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  68. Cornflake wrote:

    Oh nooo it's never to late to do something you're passionate about that's one of life's mistakes to give up! 🙂

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  69. I haven't been watching…and I'm not sure why. I know I would love it. I am going to set my TiVo.

    My the way, how do you get an icon to show on your page tab (on my web browser – there is a big 'Z').

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  70. Sharon wrote:

    Thank you for your comment!
    Yup my state of the union is a very happy and sunny one 🙂

    I have never seen that show but it looks awesome

    what a beautiful blog you have 🙂 xoxo

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  71. you crack me up. good design with sarcasm and sass to spare? love that.

    i have GOT to tune into this show! people are raving about it right and left and silly france doesn't even get bravo. maybe i could watch it online?!

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  72. Thanks for the post,i love the show,

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  73. can you believe i still haven't seen JS? i'm so backed up on shows . . .

    you're never to old to go back to school, but you definitely don't need it, either! throw caution to the wind and hang your shingle!

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  74. Hah! I laughed out loud when I read your post. On top of everything, their children are good looking too. Except Breaker kind of gets on my nerves. I just wish he would chill out.

    If you want to make yourself feel better, just flip over to The Hills. They're all train wrecks.

    Published on 4.28.10 · Reply
  75. AMEN to No. 3 and 4. You are speaking my mind!

    Published on 4.29.10 · Reply
  76. Naomi wrote:

    Haven't seen it yet… but I plan to catch myself. they must be utterly loaded though. 7 kids a huge house in NYC and an art collection? I smell family money or something.

    Published on 4.29.10 · Reply
  77. Bren wrote:

    I haven't seen it yet either, and now I'm not sure I want to! They already make me sick just looking at these images! I think Naomi is onto something…family money seems about right.


    Published on 4.30.10 · Reply
  78. Rachel wrote:

    Definitely need to tune into this show!!

    Yeah, I can't believe them either. Maybe they don't sleep, have an army of servants, and high metabolisms??? 😉

    Published on 4.30.10 · Reply
  79. you crack me up…suzanne

    Published on 4.30.10 · Reply
  80. I tried watching this show a couple of times, but like all "reality" shows, the drama seemed a bit contrived. When I watch shows like that, I usually flip back if there is going to be a big reveal of a room instead of staying and watching the extraneous nonsense.

    Published on 4.30.10 · Reply
  81. Just catching up on my blog-reading . . . so sorry to hear you regretting law school! If nothing else, I'll bet it taught you (as it did for me) that you can pretty much learn anything–and most things, you can learn on your own. Medicine, maybe not, but design? Absolutely. You don't need to go to design school. (Although, as an aside, it's never to late to go back to school if you want to. I haven't entirely ruled it out.)

    And as for the Novogratzes . . . I have only watched the pilot episode, but I have to say it really turned me off. Yes, it's amazing what they have accomplished, but I would read your blog any day of the week over watching their show. Perhaps it's just the editing that places the focus on her whining and b***ching and his patronizing, playboy attitude, and makes their lives seem intolerably chaotic, but I have little patience for that sort of thing. The Zhush, on the other hand, is a class act from start to finish!

    Published on 4.30.10 · Reply
  82. great name for your blog … a girlfriend of mine always says i have some "shush" going on when i push my sweater sleeves up revealing a cuff of the shirt. too funny.

    really loved this post of yours. what a tremendous family … love big families (i'm from 11 myself), so big props to them … and in NY no less.

    and like you, i sooooo regret going to law school. sure i might make good money, but i still owe a small (six-figure) debt and get phone calls galore (ugh). btw, i found your site via Princess Anne County (Kathy).

    keep up the great work! 😉

    Published on 5.2.10 · Reply
  83. totally agree. why did we become lawyers if all we really wanted to do was design? but it's never too late…

    Published on 6.29.10 · Reply
  84. Your taste is exquisite, you dont need to go back to school, unless you want to! My hubby was a professional musician, then when that ran it's course he went to school for his Masters. Now he's almost a fully licensed therapist…whole new career at 43.

    But I agree, it is hard to feel plump in the couch while people on tv are living the sweet life! :/

    Published on 12.22.10 · Reply