Recent Posts by Sarah

I Spy Potential

During a routine cruise through my local real estate listings I saw this jewel. If you’ve got the feeling that you just want to ship lap some walls, bring some character back, get your modern farmhouse on and just generally do it up Chip & Joanna Gaines style–this house is for you. This house would almost certainly be one of the three properties that a Gaines client would see, we’ll call it the “pond house”.

It’s a whole lot of 1990s goodness but I’m guessing the upside is that all the renovation would be cosmetic. For $275,000 you can buy a 3,200 square foot house with a detached mother-in-law apartment, 25 acres, a shabby barn, a pond that needs some TLC in the form of carp to eat the algae and a whole lot of potential.

Do you see what I see?

 

farmhouse back porch

The decision to cover the entire porch on the back of this house was clearly a good one.

You could tailor the exterior to look similar to these examples that have been in my inspiration file since the onset of my Farmhouse obsession.

farmhouse historical concepts

We need to get an outdoor fireplace happening and screen in some of the porch and put a metal roof on.

farmhouse screened porch

Moving around to the front, we can get some windows, new front door, remove the vinyl siding, update the columns and railing, add a few architectural elements and we are in the business of modern farmhouses.

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If you think you are going to take this on please email me, I’m happy to be of service!

It’s Always Time for Accessories

The April issue of Elle Decor features some stunning homes and to me it’s the best issue in a long while. You should pick one up.

The best feature is the former YWCA camp from the late 1800s in Northern California that was completely reimagined by architect Gil Schafer and designed by Rita Konig.

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It’s highly personalized and the rooms have heaps of character. Konig’s interiors and her personal apartments are testaments to the importance of accessories to layer your space and communicate your personality and experiences.

Said best in the article by Konig,

“The Harrises believe in details and discoveries, and they trusted me. So I’d buy something odd, like a ship in a bottle or a stuffed seagull–I mean, who bothers to stuff a seagull?–and They’d get excited about it. Others clients might say “That’s a detail; we can deal with it later.” But they understood that sometimes, little things matter most.” Details are what allows you to create the story that gives life to a house.”

It’s because of Konig that I always search for colorful vintage glass ashtrays.

The moral of this post quite simply is — loosen up and buy the accessory that can personalize your space, don’t keep putting it off. And do always mix the old and the new.

Here are a few other vignettes to wet your whistle.

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Shop TEOT: Vintage Eero Aarnio Wicker Stools

Eero Aarnio stools

Vintage Eero Aarnio Wicker Stools

It was hard to let these babies go once I got my hands on them. They are superb foot rests not to mention way cool with their hourglass shape. They provoke a sort of what would Tom Scheerer do? type of moment upon first glance, at least that’s what they did for me.

And here’s why,

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Wouldn’t our stools look right at home in a place like this?

Green Envy

Peter Dunham’s feature in Elle Decor is what opened my eyes to the recent influx of green accents that have been floating across my radar.

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J. Crew labeled their green offering in the spring line “pesto” and next to blue, green is my favorite so I ordered a new “baby suit” in pesto green.

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green peels

My mind also wanders to Sarah Sherman Samuel’s green upholstered bed,

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green cabinets

It seems though that the green accent is often the sofa,

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green liess sofa

 

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Jersey Ice Cream Company

Have I mentioned the design duo called the Jersey Ice Cream Company before, forgive me if I droned on about it on some other occasion.

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The mix is moody and casual and the settings are generally rural but there is always the right amount of modern surprise.

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The shelving and storage is always expertly styled.

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More great styling work, its all about the details.

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I have a thing for eat-in kitchens, I think they are decidedly the way to go…for me at least.

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The expertly tossed attic hang out room.

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the perfect English roll arm sofa

Betsy and I have been talking sofas. Reason being…I was thinking about putting my dirty well-loved Petrie on the shelf and getting a…Belgian Classic Slope Arm when Restoration Hardware was running a legit year-end sale on their in stock furniture.

I waded in to a sea of online reviews and read other people’s sofa journeys and rambled on about it via email, text and on the phone to Betsy. She listened, for the most part patiently, as she does. I texted my neighbor who has a petite track arm that stands up well at 3 years of age to two small children, no pets but no major spills. “I hate to bug you about this again but did you say you got the brushed linen in fog” She knew exactly what she’d purchased because she had the receipt! Her only regret? She didn’t get the luxe depth.

The conversation between Betsy and I shifted, as it most often does when I talk to anyone about sofas, to the english roll arm sofa. Betsy said, you’ve always known you wanted a roll arm–thats what you should get. But I’d have to settle because the perfect roll arm that is financially feasible and easily accessible eludes me…it eludes most.

Design junkies know these images,

sofa coppolaSofia Coppola

Jenna Lyons English Roll Arm SofaJenna Lyons

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and the image I’m fixated on,

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sofa bulow2I tell Betsy that Pavoncelli’s children in the Town & Country feature are laying on the perfect sofa. Betsy isn’t easily convinced but she wants to pour over it with me.

 

This is some of what that conversation sounds like,

“Well it’s a tight back. I can’t tell if the back has a seam and if it’s a single seat cushion or two because of the magazine binding” We can’t find the whole flat image on the internet. “It’s down-filled, I think it’s pretty safe to say the seat cushion is down-filled. Is it George Smith? Well AD says that Markham Roberts likes George Smith.”

I love the sofas of both George Smith and George Sherlock. They are what others try to replicate. Why don’t I invest in one? Well…because they are $12,000.

 

But what happens to these sofas that are seemingly perfect and supposed to last forever? What happens when they are sat on and loved and napped on for a good long while–say 20 years or so?

Well Grandma saggy buns comes to mind,

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The cushions are starting to take a dive at Ashley Putnam’s place,

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One of the authors of the Everygirl, has the Pottery Barn Carlisle in her Chicago apartment but the cover looks a bit askew and the seat cushions look a little broken down. My Petrie seat cushions look very similar and it’s 9 years old. The Carlisle is a roll arm sofa that a lot of folks go for, it’s relatively affordable and it’s good looking. I thought it was a sure bet until I sat on one and then I quickly put the brakes on. Sorry PB, painful but true.

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A well loved George Smith three-seater once for sale on 1st Dibs,

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This two seat Smith is on sale for $6500 on Viyet, BTW you should cruise Viyet if you haven’t yet. This sofa turns nine this year. It looks good don’t you think, wonder if she’s had work done? Ultimately the legs are too contemporary.

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Perfection doesn’t yet exist and by perfection I mean the perfect sofa that we can afford, that is a beautiful roll arm silhouette, that is well-made and can be reconditioned over time, something that will last. This is all assuming that you’re in to roll arms. Maybe you’re in to slipcovered track arms and if that be the case well then we can still talk.

 

 

 

Streaming on Sofas

Did you know that “NetflixandChill” is a code phrase in the online dating world? Ah, the things we miss out on being all coupled up in 2016.

But, whether you are on Tinder or not, don’t we all love a good night in with a cuddle on the couch and some marathon TV, you know for the actual purposes of devouring your latest TV thrill?

Turns out, we at TEOT have a fascination with the darker side of the drama spectrum. To lighten things up a bit, we’ve paired our juiciest marathon obsessions with an equally intriguing sofa, for a combo worthy of its own meme.

When it’s time to binge watch, we whole-heartedly endorse these streaming and sofa combos.

 

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Making a MurdererRestoration Hardware’s Belgian Classic Slope Arm

You basically have a civic or really a human duty to watch the 10 episode documentary series on Netflix called Making a Murderer. It’s a documentary deep dive into a murder mystery the likes of our favorite podcast SERIAL. Has the justice system failed an innocent citizen? Is there a vast government conspiracy at work? Sink into the luxe depth of the Classic Slope Arm and try to keep up with the details.

 

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FargoJoybird’s Braxton Sectional

The FX series based on the Cohen Brothers film of the same name is Billy Bob with creepy bangs, its a classic Cohen, “take no prisoners,” split-screen delight with a great soundtrack. If you like dark comedy, you may agree that this series was the best thing on TV all year. We’ll take it stretched out on the midcentury lines of the Braxton of course.

 

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The Returned + The Willoughby

(the French version, you gotta watch the original French version available on Sundance & Amazon)
It’s a slow horror series with a look at humanity through the kind of dark lens that only the European can hold up. Encroaching waters threaten a small lakeside town, haunted with the supernatural return of formerly deceased loved ones and the leftover anguish from serial murderer. You need a deep, dark lived in velvet sofa with classic lines to envelop you and cradle you throught this rocking cerebreal horror. We think Anthropologie’s classic roll arm sofa in Forest Green will do.

 

 

 

 

Shop TEOT: Vintage Navy Ceramic Lamp

Did you love almost everything as I did about Eliza Dyson’s CA home in House Beautiful’s December/January issue? If you haven’t seen it I recommend clicking the link to soak it in for a little or a long time.

Dyson’s bedroom is just one of the many places that I’ve spotted a classic navy blue ceramic lamp. We love the color of our vintage navy table lamp, so versatile, shiny and navy….sweet navy.

 

vintage navy lamp

SHOP TEOT Winter Sale 15% Off

Dear TEOT Readers and SHOP TEOT Lovers,

How did you make out this Christmas!? Maybe you all have very attentive and astute gift givers as significant others, friends or family, which is seriously lucky!

For those of you who missed the boat, or didn’t get exactly what you wanted and have got Christmas money in the pocket burning a hole, now is the time.

We’re offering 15% off the whole SHOP TEOT INVENTORY. And, yes that includes the vintage settee that everyone loves so much.

Dig into the SHOP TEOT WINTER SALE now through Jan 3 with coupon code BAGIT.

 

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Asheville Project: Bath Plan II

The Asheville clients got two design plans to choose from once we narrowed our vanity style down (i.e. color, white or wood) we were ready to jam out the overall plan. The clients narrowed it to a wood vanity or a colored vanity. We’ve seen the wood vanity concept, so let’s take a look at the vanity with some color.

I’m recently a fan of Benjamin Moore’s mysterious but saturated gray color called Brewster Gray. I don’t think it’s going to be an infallible color in every space but so far so good. I painted a sad little 1980s oak vanity Brewster Gray recently and it gave that little bathroom a new lease on life.

We’re keeping with a modern farmhouse aesthetic and my argument was strong for either a full shiplap wall or just wainscoting. Shiplap will add dimension and create that utilitarian look that we love so much.

A simple vanity with just a few drawers because it’s a guest bath and an open slatted shelf for towel storage should fit the 50″ wide space nicely.

The key differences between the two plans are the floor tile, sconce choices, hardware and the introduction of the blue/gray vanity. The obvious question to you is– Plan I or Plan II?

Asheville bath plan II

Don’t Resist White Rooms

Please don’t fight it. White rooms are ok, really I promise. You’re apprehensive because you think it will be boring or sterile. We can’t design/decorate the room with paint only just because we paint it a great shade of blue/gray doesn’t mean that our work is done in that room. There are layers and layers that can go in that white room and on those walls. It’s clean and bright and we can build on that.

I’ve recommended at least one white paint color to three different homeowners and two resisted and the third client is trying to resist in their bath remodel that has a modern farmhouse lean!

These rooms all have white walls, don’t you love them?

Let’s begin with the epic love affair we have with white kitchens,

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People pin this image like it is their JOB,

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We love white bathrooms almost as much as white kitchens. And you know what we really crave, fresh white ship lap on the walls whether we live in SoCal or Charleston.

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Now don’t be afraid but…everything is white in here except for the floor,

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You see the need for white walls here? Because color is bonkers everywhere else. A neutral foundation provides for a situation where you can totally flake out on the throw pillows you just bought every week, every month whatevs

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By the way– imagine that reading nook above full of a pile of indigo, from the TEOT Shop!

TEOT Shop Indigo pile

a white library/den makes it open season for book color and pretty much everything else

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White bedrooms…absolutely. Is anyone noticing that white is warmed up by…WOOD

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Farmhouse white,

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More of that glorious white ship lap even in the dining room,

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White is welcoming too, love the contrast of the black frames on those modern lanterns against the white on the walls

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white makes for a good workspace wall color too,

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And of course white makes for an excellent background for a great art collection,

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I’ve got dreams to remember

If you’ve been hanging out with us for a while here on TEOT, then you might have gathered that I move around a lot. I can’t stay in one house for long. For the record, I’ve been at my current house for a little over two years but it feels like at least…an eternity.  I don’t move from state to state, it’s more like one house over or maybe the other side of town. When I think about homes around here (everyday), I’ve come to the conclusion that as long as I’m physically able to move around I’ll never be satisfied with one house.

During my weekly visit with the MLS, I ran across this house.  Although I’d seen it before, it was far more interesting to me this visit.

I sent Betsy a text that said something like “I wanna move here, now. It’s like Betty Draper meets Southern Living later meets Betsy Burnham” Then I emailed it to a couple of people and then I leaned over to Dan and said look at this house. He did and remarkably he played along for a bit and was interested too.

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What I loved the most about this house is the way it sits on the property, especially in the backyard.

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It was built in 1928, but remodeled mostly by Betty Draper in the 1960s.

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Dan said you almost have to leave the wallpaper for a while because its so weird.


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Hats off on the acid yellow laminate.

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Betsy’s response to me was, “I wanna see you do that” but followed by “that place needs a serious update”. It really does, the bones are good, the potential is there as it almost always is but it truly needs a major overhaul.


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Dan’s favorite part was the little hidden basketball court

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Asheville Project: Bath Plan I

The Asheville Project is a guest bedroom and bathroom addition on to a newer home and the walls are about to go up.

Before we get to the sheetrock, we needed to figure out our design direction. After the clients narrowed the field of choices for vanity design to either wood or a blue/grey painted vanity, I put together two design plans for the clients to consider.

We’ve discussed the modern farmhouse vibe, we all love shiplap and we need to recognize the beautiful mountain environment outside without plastering bear paw imprints all over everything. I think we’ve achieved those things and a little more in these design mockups.

This is bath design plan I, the key difference is the rustic wood vanity.

Asheville bath plan I

Recent Comments by Sarah