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Geek Out: Home Edition

November 10, 2010

Our bleeding hearts really screw us sometimes. We won’t get our cats declawed because of what we’ve heard it does to their personalities, demeanor and that it can aggravate biting habits. Also, when they were kittens, we couldn’t afford it, and it seems cruel to do it when they’re a year and a half old because of how much they weigh (Tupac at a stalwart 18.6 lbs and Biggie Smalls at an ironic 8 lbs – they’re on diets).

Therefore, until they’re out of their scratchy phases (with the help of a couple of spray-bottles and Isaiah’s “scary voice”), we’re doomed to watch our Craigslist-find-of-a-couch get ripped to shreds. Luckily, they haven’t moved on to anything else and are slowly winding down from that habit.

When they stop/we cave and get their front claws removed, we’re looking forward to new, undestroyed furniture. We furnished our apartment on $400 and a whole lot of time hunting on Craigslist and browsing Pier 1 sales. It definitely feels like home, it looks lived in and eclectic and we finally have a space that says “Us.” If nothing else, we have soft mood lighting down to a science.

Every once in a while, I get on a decor kick and rack up a bunch of bookmarks for the future. This is for those of you in a different phase, who are ready to start gathering up inspiration.

Isaiah and I, just like our wedding style conflict, have two separate “pulls” for our decor affections. We love minimalistic, monochromatic decor (but this could never be a viable option for us of the people-who-spill-regularly-tribe).

Something like this from Fresh Home would be beautiful and excellent for us if we could swap out the white couch.

I love this workspace from A Merry Mishap, the chalkboard wall won me over immediately and Apple goes with everything, doesn’t it? The hanging pencil cups had me from “hello” I think.

I love this tutorial from Apartment Therapy on separating rooms with curtains for $40.00 and the eclectic vibe of the room leads me to the next half of our split style personality.

We have this other, completely eclectic and comfortable vibe with punchy colors and world-inspired or mid-century modern furniture and conflicting patterns side of us. Rooms like this, in a shoot from Feather Love, come to mind.

feather love photography eclectic home decor

Our apartment is most closely decorated currently like the jealous baby sibling version of this freaking beautiful home of interior designer Wary Meyers. Holy cow, I love her style.

We’ve established a couple of musts. We need colored walls, because white walls get dirty with our kid fingers…despite having no actual children. We cannot have a white couch. We have to mix these two styles.

Isaiah so sweetly painted the accent wall in our apartment an earthy but punchy mustard yellow while I was on my trip this summer. He’s a winner, eh?

What style is your home decorated in? Tell me all about it.

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28 Comments leave one →
  1. November 10, 2010 9:44 am

    i think we’re on our way to achieving this hybrid style you speak of, but we’re a little bare bones at the moment. still can’t commit to color. we don’t want to pay to have it painted over, but being allowed to paint our apartment is something we feel the need to take advantage of.

    our place is a mix of IKEA and random finds. we like it. it’s cozy. i definitely bring a “let’s refinish all this random crap we find on the side of the road” style and josh has a “clean lines is my jamz yo” thing going on. finding a way to blend it is beautiful and fun.

    you guys are nesting like crazy! what what!!!

    • November 10, 2010 1:35 pm

      oh for sure, isaiah and i are the same way. he loves ikea and streamlined looks, i love somewhere eclectic and liveable and what not – comfy. We’re mixing it up and I like it alot! (Maybe we can swap photos of our places, eh?)

  2. November 10, 2010 10:39 am

    Yes on the taste. Agreed w/ all of these.

    I can’t wait for the house and the beginning of our merging and collecting. Right now we’re sort of in limbo.

    And for the record, C’s cat is declawed, and it is what makes me able to love her. She doesn’t bite at all, and is still super playful and happy. She’s not a cuddler, but that’s because he adopted her when she was a few months old and had just been living with cats, no humans. But since I’ve moved in she’s been much more pet-able. I felt bad about it at first, but I will definitely de-claw any cats I get. I wouldn’t if she was an outside kitty, but she’s very firmly protected here.

    • November 10, 2010 1:37 pm

      yeah i agree…we’re thinking about it. the problem is that once they’re over a year old, it’s almost cruel to get them declawed because of the weight…they jump and land on the stitches and often rip them 😦 I’m not sure I can do that to my little munchkins, but I can’t afford to keep rebuying couches, either, so I guess we’ll see what happens in the next couple of months!

  3. November 10, 2010 11:10 am

    We went to Ikea the other day to get a rug for our living room. Our furniture is a hodge-podge for a couple of reasons: (1) we pick up cheap pieces to refinish and restore all the time because it’s our hobby and (2) we’re slowly trying to replace pieces that have bad memories or don’t feel like “ours.”

    Even though the rug we picked wasn’t the gorgeous Persian or hand-braided rug of my dreams, just that little touch made our room feel like more like home.

    I happen to be completely in love with that engagement session from Feather Love, btw.

    Our sofa is something I picked out and reupholstered years ago — it’s a dark blue-on-blue pattern with bright red piping. The art on our walls is all home grown — water colors my Mom painted; an oil painting and several charcoal drawings Tony did; and, of course, kid art.

    • November 10, 2010 1:40 pm

      YES. That session from Feather Love is my alltime favorite engagement shoot and I can hardly look at it without wishing that we had had our session taken in our apt. (unhealthy)
      YAY! 90% of the art in our apt. is either Isaiah’s paintings or photos we’ve taken. WOOT! Isn’t that ze best?! Kid art…I can’t wait for kid art.

      Dude…the rug in our apt. is so tattered…it’s done BEEN time for a new one. I bought one from Target for $50 thinking “this is totally gonna change the whole look!” Turns out, the cats found the loops used for the patterns completely enthralling! We ended up returning it..minus a few threads…later that same night. Your house sounds lovely, Sarah.

  4. November 10, 2010 1:34 pm

    i dig all of the above!

  5. November 10, 2010 1:44 pm

    I’m all about colour and texture myself. It’s a bit hard truly doing things your way when you live in a rented flat but I try. I do like mixing modern and vintage furniture and pieces though. I like the last 3 pics you’ve got up there best.

    • November 10, 2010 1:47 pm

      For sure, we live in an apartment and go through the same thing. The accent wall is the only thing we were allowed to paint, but we did the damn thing bright when we painted it. Agreed, the last three really feel homey to me, but I still die a little knowing that my workspace will never look as clean and streamlined and organized as the one from Merry Mishap.

  6. November 10, 2010 2:01 pm

    right now we’re in grandparent-hand-me-down land, with a dash of IKEA… don’t think we’ll be investing in new furniture for a while because it’s so damn expensive. I think we both tend toward a lived-in, comfy look… but maybe that’s because most of the stuff we’ve been living with dates to the ’50s and ’60s. I love colors, but I also think white space can be killer when used well! So, I guess I’ll find out if I ever get a place I can decorate on my own…

    I also wanted to weigh in on the kitties… poor kitties! Declawing a cat seems so painful — and what if they got out and were left defenseless against some other animal? I’m sure there’s a way to train them against scratching… use a squirt bottle maybe? Or just get a lot of scratching posts/cardboard things where they can focus their scratching energies? Dunno. They make plastic things to cover the corners of couches, but those might look pretty lame. At any rate, there are options. Oh yeah! This one blogger I read (jeremyandkathleen.blogspot.com) uses those little rubber things you put on your cats claws so they can’t mess things up when they scratch. that’s a thought…

    Anyway, sorry for the cat-lady tangent there! Love the photos — decorating and nesting is so fun!

    • November 11, 2010 1:18 am

      for sure! a friend of ours just recommended those cat-claw-covers…i don’t think we’ll end up getting them declawed…even when we trim them, they whine and cry and hide for days after (they’re not hiders).

      i love the lived-in look as well, dear. a friend of the family has a PRISTINE space, almost exactly like the first photo, and i never feel like i can sit anywhere…yikes.

  7. November 10, 2010 2:05 pm

    $400?!! Incredible! I must see your apartment, I’m sure it’s wonderful!

    The subject of cats came out in our discussion on which house pet to get. My husband loves cats, can’t get himself into the flat unless he played with the stray cats downstairs. The only thing is, they destroy everything! Dogs? As much as I like them, they drool too much. We are sticking with our current housepet choice – rabbits with attitude!

    • November 11, 2010 1:16 am

      haha, yes, $400, but it took FOREVER of window shopping on Craigslist to find what we needed. oh, girl, i know all about rabbits with attitude. i had a pet bunny once, named Lucy, who was a massive whore. she would scratch ALL night, Isaiah was terrified to feed her because she ALWAYS bit him, and she would ram her cage side to side until it fell and she would get free. i would always scream in the middle of the night, “Lucy, you bitch!” only animal i ever hated. i understand the problem though…cats and dogs are tough pets, man. have you seen “boo” – the dog on facebook with more fans than the majority of corporate brands?

  8. November 10, 2010 4:45 pm

    I highly recommend scratching posts and a squirt bottle. That way, you squirt them when they go for the couch (after a couple sprays, my cat would run away just at the sight of the bottle) and they still have a scratching post for what’s necessary. Doc only scratches his scratching posts about 90% of the time. The other 10% I yell, squirt him with water, or throw things in his general direction to scare him away. Probably not the nicest thing to do, but I never aim *at* him.

    I loved that Feather Love shoot, too. They & their house are gorgeous. I have no idea what I’d consider my style, but eclectic is probably the best word. Because I love MCM & Scandinavian, but I also like overstuffed chairs and wood furniture and leather chairs and antiques and things from Brasil. Once we throw DJ’s taste into the mix – some antiques, some classic (think furniture from Anthropologie – which ALWAYS surprises me), and not so much retro/MCM – and I think maybe “confused” is a better word for it…

    • November 11, 2010 1:20 am

      definitely, thanks for the tips, Kristy. we’re working on getting a great scratching post for them, hopefully that will work. haha we aim at our cats sometimes, but only because they pretend they don’t hear us…but we see those little pointy, mischievous ears geared in our direction, who you think you’re foolin, cats?

      i love classic furniture…we’ll have to talk sometime about this more at length, missy.

  9. November 10, 2010 8:14 pm

    Dearest Lizzie, so sorry to hear about your kitty situation there. I hope things get better soon. These photos from home are soo gorgeous…and im really loving that last one with all the colorful pillows. Very inspiring! I like very clean look and all white funitures with some really colorful decos. 🙂 Have a lovely merry happy day and love to you!

    • November 11, 2010 1:21 am

      jacqueline, you are just the sweetest thing! your blog’s title completely suits you, 100%. thanks so much.

  10. November 10, 2010 8:34 pm

    Oh, the curses of decorating as a couple! When John and I moved in together, we put my beautiful hand-painting turn of the century boudoir furniture in one room, and John’s heavy black desk and leather club chairs in the other! As our style has evolved together and our apartments have gotten smaller (goodbye Baltimore, hello San Francisco!), our style is traditional and pretty preppy, a perfect compromise!

    • November 11, 2010 1:23 am

      oh for sure! i think that combining styles is excellent..isaiah brings out this style i never even knew i liked…and turns out, i LOVE it, actually. your apartment sounds so cute! yay for SF, is it way more expensive to live there?

  11. November 11, 2010 5:29 am

    oooh love these photos. I have a tag on my google reader just for ‘home envy’. with 3 cats and a husband who lets his clothes fall where they may (I’m guilty too), I am never going to have a clean or stylish home. I have a super retro 50s home complete with a bomb shelter which has its own charms but my home will never look like any blog photo (well except mine own, I suppose). there is only one couch they like to claw and I will buy a couch cover for when company comes over or just hope they ignore it

    • November 12, 2010 2:19 am

      oh man, for sure. no one ever says anything about ours…i don’t know if it’s because they don’t notice, don’t care, or talk massive amounts of shit about us when they leave our place or what…but it doesn’t bother me too much.

  12. November 11, 2010 12:04 pm

    I think the greatest idea I ever had about decorating my place was to hang my guitars and banjo from hooks on the wall. It saves space on the ground, looks really cool, and virtually ensures the guitars won’t get damaged by someone running into them.

    Jessica and I periodically congratulate ourselves for our lovely little apartment and how we’ve decorated it. It’s not fancy, but we have some nice touches. Shelves my dad built and installed right on the walls; my grandmother’s old sewing table in the living room, floor lamps in two corners, bulletin boards with photos tacked on.

    When you really love your home, that’s the best decoration of all!

    • November 12, 2010 2:18 am

      That sounds awesome, Bret, good work! Floor lamps are my jam, I’m all about some lighting, dude. Couldn’t agree more…our apartment is tiny and we did what we could…but it feels like home…so I getcha.

  13. November 11, 2010 9:48 pm

    I’m completely smitten by the photos of Wary Meyers’ home. Gosh darn it. I could live there. Oh yeah. But, I live here, and it’s pretty nice. All white walls, which I’m not too crazy about, but the house is a bajillion square feet and we’d have to install scaffolding to reach the ceilings, if we tried to paint ourselves. Or pay someone a fee rivaling the cost of your wedding. Um, no. White walls. We’ve been here 1 year and have made a lot of progress. But it’s all about the journey anyway. Love and inspiration. 🙂

    • November 12, 2010 2:17 am

      Your house is FANTASTIC, lady! Hush! You’re doing an excellent job…I love decorating slowly, that’s my favorite…otherwise you rush out, spend a bunch of money on stuff to quickly fill the space and you end up not being able to buy spur of the moment great finds later because it doesn’t fit with the cookie-cutter style you picked in the beginning (or you run out of fundage, yikes!). Definitely gather inspiration, be careful it doesn’t make you nuts, haha!

  14. November 12, 2010 1:44 am

    ahh i LOVE these spaces!! i’ve been on a big white + black kick lately, and those first few images are so inspiring.

    • November 12, 2010 2:16 am

      Oh for sure, black and white is great for decor…we’re on a monochromatic gray kick lately…we’ll see if that transfers into our house at all…

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