I've been asked a few times about our home. What does our house look like? Do I decorate with vintage pieces? Do I shop for our home while I'm out shopping for my shop?
We purchased our house about four years ago. San Diego is a pricey housing market so we were thrilled to be able to buy a house even if it was a major project. Our house was nicknamed the "Teal Monster" because the previous owners loved bright teal and nearly every surface was this color - exterior paint, carpet, walls, kitchen cabinets... We've put a lot of work into our house over the last couple of years and while it's not completely done, it's getting there. It feels like our home rather than an old house that needs a lot of work.
When Lance and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary in August I felt it would be the perfect time to take some pictures together at our home. I know we won't live here forever, but we'll have these pictures to remember this time in our lives and to remember our first home.
Cindy from Orange Turtle Photography captured our home better than I ever could, so I'm sharing some of the photos she took to give you a glimpse into our home and answer some of the questions I'm been asked. Fair warning - it was an anniversary shoot, not a house shoot, so there's also a lot of Lance and me mixed in!
We painted our house dark gray with white trim. The paint job is fairly traditional, so I wanted something a little different and joyful for our front door. We went with a yellow that has some green undertones. Our painter asked me several times if I really wanted the door painted this color. Despite his hesitations, I love it. It's hard to be anything but happy when you come home to a door the color of sunshine.
I believe the hanging plant is called a stag fern. It's from my favorite nursery in San Diego - Exotic Gardens. The nursery is a bit small, but filled with all kinds of cacti, succulents, and other desert friendly plants.
We do most of our living in the front of our home. It's where we watch the morning news together and share coffee. It's where I put together Paper Packs on the coffee table. It's where we eat dinner sometimes when the dining table feels a bit too formal.
Like the rest of our home, I do have some vintage pieces, but also like the room to feel open and simple. Too much furniture and too many decorations makes me feel overwhelmed. I also prefer pieces that serve a function whenever possible.
Our coffee table has a vintage wood box that belonged to my dad for many years, but was passed down to me last year. It hides all of our remote controls and Lance's game controllers. I planted a succulent in on old coffee tin, and use an orange enamel bowl to hold a pile of photos that are fun to flip through. Some of the photos are Instamax, but most are from Social Print Studio.
The other vintage decor that isn't shown is a large red cross flag that hangs on the wall and a large 7-Up wood box that conceals our cable box and Lance's Xbox.
Behind our main living area is the dining room. This area was originally an additional bedroom, but was converted to a dining area many years ago. There is a closet in the corner leftover from its days as a bedroom. We took off the closet door, added a bar cart, and use the shelves to store glasses. Rather than an awkward closet, we now have a drink area that feels like it fits in the space.
The gallery wall in our dining area is one of my favorite parts of the house. It took awhile, but it finally feels right and balanced to me. The white frames are from IKEA, and the wood frames are from Target. All of the prints, photos, and paintings are meaningful, including a collage of the photobooth pictures taken at our wedding and a vintage Polaroid from my grandma who passed away. The blue astronomy chart is vintage sheet music that caught my eye at the thrift store one day. Framing interesting pieces of vintage ephemera is an affordable alternative to traditional artwork.
Our kitchen was the biggest project we took on. Aside from reusing some of the old cabinets, nearly everything else had to be redone. I like to keep my counters fairly bare, but do have a vintage scale (that currently holds a small pumpkin!), my grandma's old rolling pin, and a few other pretty and useful pieces out.
I mentioned before that my office is definitely the brightest and most colorful room in our house, and here it is. It's also the room with the most stuff! I have two large shelves from IKEA that line one wall, and a smaller bookshelf on the other. The top of this bookshelf also holds my vintage thermos collection.
My office has a very small closet, but plenty of storage above the closet. I store extra products in several green crates that are labeled with hang tags.
My desk was a semi-DYI project. It is constructed from a tabletop and legs from IKEA. I simply stained and sealed the tabletop and attached the legs. Above my desk is an old classroom map that I found in an antique store for an awesome deal many years ago before pull down maps became so trendy (and so pricey!).
The backyard was our big project of the summer. Our goal was to make it easy to maintain and require as little water as possible. We added some large cacti, lots of rock, and two seating areas. We ate several meals out here this summer, and look forward to drinking apple cider and hot chocolate by the outdoor fireplace once the weather finally cools down.
[All photos by Orange Turtle Photography]
And that concludes the tour! Hope you enjoyed a little look into our first home! If you have any questions, leave a comment and I'd be happy to answer!