Subscribe to our Shop TEOT newsletter
Subscribe to receive TEOT blog posts via email
Email Address

Bohemian Decor

Conversations: Bohemian Luxury

Bohemian Luxury by Williams Sonoma Home

Last night I was on the phone with my dad for a nice long chat and at one point he says “You know, I had an idea for your The Estate of Things.”

Oh, I was piqued and just loved the conversation that ensued. His idea was for Sarah and me to please illustrate for him just what exactly bohemian versus traditional would look like in the same space. His suggestion was to design a room using all of the necessary elements that could illustrate how one might lean toward tradition with elements of the eclectic. He wanted to see us style it Sarah’s way, Betsy’s way and the together way. Sweet Daddy.

We’ll work on that for you.

Meanwhile, it made me think of this image that Sarah snapped for me as she was cruising through the most recent Williams-Sonoma Home Catalog.

Considering Bohemian Luxury by the estate of things

Sarah had asked: “Betsy do you see flashes of your *boho tomboy luxe vision in WS Home?”

A fun conversation ensued. Indeed, this room is quite traditional, so we set to picking it apart.

BETSY: It’s a little tough for me to picture Frank Zappa kicking up his feet in that room – without some ol white lady comin by with a disapproving glare.

SARAH: Agree, I don’t think Frank would lounge there, pajama people would not be comfortable on that sofa. It’s too buttoned up. Are you wondering where the peacock blue is?

BETSY: Haha. Yes. Needs more jewel tone

We find this room to be well articulated. The shelves have been styled impeccably. The bones of the room feature a nice warm rustic quality that does bring in some SoCal canyon architectural reference.  What do you guys think?

In theory, this image is very much in the vein of a Southern Traditional Sarah / So Cal Casual Betsy mash-up, but it leans just a little too heavy on the formality for either of us to find it comfortable. Sarah says if you swap that sofa/chair combo for a PJ friendly, low slung sectional, it would make a huge difference. She might choose an extra deep English roll arm to keep it classic.

I think we need to swap out all of the patterns and accessories for something a bit more earthy, global and/or handmade. This room would sing with a little more personalization. That almost always happens in the final layer of accessories. It’s an opportunity to showcase who you are as the body that vacates the premises. The items you’ve collected from your travels and the sentimental mementos that make your shelves a showcase for your family are what gives your home that bohemian twist.


*boho tomboy luxe
trying to define my style


A Style Evolution



This is my home. We’ve embraced the boho vibe.

Some of you out there, like me, are riding the wave of this recent swell in hippie home decor. Call it boho or bohemian if you prefer.  Either way, it has taken its place in my heart in a way that makes more sense to my soul.

I dig it much more than some of the other styles out there. I’m looking at you guys SoCal Coastal Chic, Southern Traditional, and Industrial Loft.

I have kept a “Fantasy Living” as well as a “My Style” board on Pinterest since I started using the service. These are each fantastic places to bookmark the images of interiors that I feel resonate on a personal level.

I love to go back to these as time passes. Of course, style, in its essence, is constantly evolving. It’s so nice to have a reference point through which to analyze consistency versus influence over time.

With this practice, you may learn that you are mostly influenced in your tastes by trend, maybe this hippie thing is a trend and you are into hanging textile art and vintage hmong pattern for the moment alone! Or perhaps you have evolved by circumstance, maybe you’ve moved to a new part of the country and the influence of the new surroundings have changed your look at home. Maybe you are a gigantic sponge and you like a bit of everything (like me) or perhaps you are quite regimented in your aesthetic and you always manage to dig consistently into a look that is your signature style.

These are fun things to think about. Now here are some fun images to look at!

I like to think of this collection as an expression of my recent interest in fancy hippies! A touch of glam, some dark moody palettes and plenty of textures sets the vibe. Y’all dig? What are you into lately?


African Basket in the Etsy Shop


How great does that sweet little turquoise basket look among the peacock chair and Turkish rug in my corner that I set up just for this shot? I’m going to miss this dude, he’s come to have a personality. His lid is so expressive.


This beautifully handmade African basket originates from Senegal. I was told that this was handmade by the seller’s own tribe near Mali. He brings baskets to the US from Africa via air carrier and sells them on the street at the Culver City Farmer’s Market here in Los Angeles.

I love the contrast of the bright and lively turquoise against the organic texture of the grass basket.

Perfect for toy storage, a small contained diaper pail or for layering under a console table in your entry or living room. I styled this guy alongside another basket and my peacock chair, mixing in just a couple other global elements for that New Bohemian style.


[imagebox maintitle=”Shop The Basket on ETSY” subtitle=”” image=”” color=”white” space=”60″ link=””]


More from the Shop


Southern California Style: Exhibit A The Bungalow in Santa Monica

Kate on an Indigo Sofa with Mexican Serape The Estate of Things

I’ve been neck deep in a design project, trying to illustrate and educate just exactly what elements exemplify the SoCal cool vibes that I’ve grown to love while living here in Santa Monica.

The Bungalow is a bar that by all intensive purposes is the most beautifully decorated collection of douchery one could ever conjure. But, if you get there early on a weekday, you can enjoy a nice glass of pink wine with your sunset before its patios and porches fill up too tight, brimming with a mix of uber important biz dudes and ladies in Forever21 sweaters with floppy felt hats that barely hide consuming glares of judgement below them! *I’m sorry that I’m getting old. Kate and I have this conversation every time we go. It’s me, it’s not the crowd. They are probably all beautiful people. I’m just growing cold in my heart as I near the part of my thirties that means I must soon round up to 40.

Good lord, no wonder my Mom is hassling me to get married.

At any rate, going early to The Bungalow is the best for me. I can swim around freely to snap photos of all the lovely living vignettes that they’ve squirreled away in every nook and cranny of the old home. It’s all been converted into a lovely collection of bars and meeting spaces with lounging areas all over. I love hanging out when all of the sofas are empty and I can comfortably peruse every tschotke on each shelf.

I’ve recently described this place as such…

An aged hipster surfer dude with sun bleached curls and leathery tan skin finally returns to his California roots, after spending the last 20 years abroad… he’s built water systems in Morocco, chased some tail in Paris, he’s taught English to children in Peru, and he’s broken horses on the dude ranch on the Baja Peninsula – and now he’s returned to his boho surf shack to settle down and enjoy the items he’s collected from the lives he’s lived.

Here’s a glimpse! I wouldn’t know how to better capture of the spirit of the West Coast Southland.





Sarah and I have both been a little jonesy over Eskayel and their watery tie-dye designs. Are you hype to this hipness already!? I’m climbing on board in a big way.

The most fascinating part of this incredible line of inky blues and other extra-terrestrial color combos is the range of application that I have seen. From boho beachy bungalows to southern traditional powder rooms, this rorschach like graphic is carving a deep want into the hearts of many.

Peep a few of our favorites from their portfolio of applications and then tell me where you want yours!? I’m thinking it would have been perfect for the powder room at the house on the hill that we didn’t get. Maybe I should contact the buyer to see if they want me to help them decorate!


A Little Hippie Den Makeover

Hippie Den Makeover Before and After

This past week I took a quick trip to Fort Collins to visit with my brother and his wife and their sweet gaggle of children, Avery, Madeline & Ezri. They’ve recently moved from Los Angeles and are still making their new house a home. The split level ranch style represents an interesting challenge for a work-from-home momma that splits her time chasing a wild 2.5 year old plus a 8 month old oral explorer on the cusp of walking. The main floor features the most lived-in/baby proofed kitchen and living room combo, but we needed to carve out a more aesthetically pleasing family friendly solution in the forgotten downstairs den where the homies can all stack up and watch movies by the fireplace. Here is a look at the space before.

The family has amassed a fair suite of seating options for next to nothing from sites like craigslist as well as some serendipitous curb finds. I know as design bloggers we like to talk about dropping 44.5 gabillion budgets on a room redo, but the reality for most of us, is that a room might need to come together with more frugality than that. They had pretty much all they needed, so we approached this room with the idea to simply apply a plan to what they had. After a quick cruise at the local thrift store for just a few missing pieces, e.g. the pillows and a rug and a dig through a stack of textiles downstairs, we were able to pull together this little cozy hippie den.

I love how we ended up with something that felt like it speaks to the personality of the family and suits their needs as a second living area. What was once a careless den is now it’s own little slice of heaven for a nap by the fire or movie nights. My next suggestion for their collection might be a few floor poufs for the nights that their 8 year old son has a friend over for video games, and some hanging plants in the window to polish off that modern bohemian jungalow vibe.