Grown-Up Luxe, with a Sly Free-Spirit Bohemian Bent

My friend Darby: 

She's a smart, witty writer, doting wife, mother of two boys, hostess with the most-est, and the ultimate pixie-cut cool-girl. After months of casually keeping one eye open for a new and better house, she and her husband Andrew decided to stop the search and instead re-fall in love with their current home. Once they'd committed to stay she decided it was time to make their charming craftsman finally reflect that aforementioned dynamic personality. This is where I joined the party. 


One of my favorite parts in a client decorating project is the first meeting. You sit down, start talking, but mostly you dream. It's typically a very scattered conversation wherein inspiration is thrown about, haphazard and pure. Words - often unattached to traditional sentence structure - flow freely, pictures fly between iPhones, and artists are referenced. A vision takes shape. During my particular conversation with Darby her affinity for southwestern art, interesting textiles, Alfred Stieglitz and his photos of Georgia O'Keeffe, bits of glamour, but still the slightest hint of the macabre, all helped a theme emerge: Grown-Up Luxe, with a Sly Free-Spirit Bohemian Bent. 

This was my initial mood board:


In hindsight, wow, that was pretty feminine. Darby loved it, but the Graham and Brown Kensington Floral Wallpaper was an understandably definitive "No" from Andrew. I'd chosen it for its large impact pattern, yet still neutral palate. Luckily wallpaper is cool again; and, the current resurgence of crazy/sexy/cool wallpaper companies made finding other suitable options a breeze. We narrowed it down to a couple of Hygge and West papers, eventually settling on Knots (which has the added benefit of not having already been used in a million rooms on Pinterest).

For the area rug my plan was to score a beautiful vintage Turkish Kilim. It didn't have to be pink, but definitely in the warm color family. Unfortunately, finding a beautiful affordable 8x10 vintage rug is near impossible. I found a few options on eBay, but none of them were quite right. I briefly pursued the idea of layering a smaller rug on top of a larger sisal or jute rug, but it just felt like a lot of work for not a lot of impact. So RugsUSA it was. I sent Darby and Andrew a couple of options and they chose the Tuscan rug in Raspberry. 


Now that the rug and wallpaper were selected, the last remaining large ticket item to secure was the sofa. From the beginning I really loved the idea of a teal sofa for their room and it did stay in play for a long time. Unfortunately, even though Andrew and Darby both liked the West Elm Peggy Mid-Century Sofa from the mood board, the 8-10 week lead time coupled with the extensive additional fees for delivery and the ever ubiquitous/mysterious "handling" charges kept it from being the most viable choice. In the end, they chose to pursue a local option and selected this charmer.

Those are the plans. And now it's time for the fun part: putting it all together! Darby's been mad at work painting and wallpapering while I've been collecting all the quirky art, accessories, and southwestern textiles to my heart's content. We're getting close!