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Mel’s MOTO Reveal – It’s The Breath Of Minimalist, Uncluttered Air We All Need

Hi readers, it’s me Mel! (aka Melanie Burstin). I’m on the blog today to finally share my fully decorated first home. As a quick reminder, I’m an LA-based interior designer who once worked with Emily Henderson for a very fun few years and just recently (eek 10 months ago) bought my first home. It’s a TIC so if you want to go back and remind yourself what that is, and/or remind yourself what my plans were so you can see if I stuck to them or completely jumped ship…here’s my intro post

As I just mentioned, this project has taken me 10 months! I am going to go ahead and blame Covid for a lot of the delays but I’ll also blame some personal indecision as well. I’m definitely my pickiest client and man did I want this space to be perfect. Thankfully along the way, I’ve enjoyed every single second of living here and it really does feel like home. It’s perfect to me and for that, I’m grateful and excited to share. 

Sofa (custom) | Coffee Table (custom) | Pendant | Sconce (vintage)

So, let’s start with the living room and the amazing corner sectional I teased in my intro post. You guys, it is a big, big life move to have your first sectional. I would say it is ‘peak adulting’. Yes, we only sit in the same corner spot but man oh man is that corner spot comfy. I would be remiss if I did not thank my amazing OG mentor Rosa Beltran for helping me make the perfect sofa for this space. I wanted something that felt unique but also simple enough to not be crazy or trendy and I knew the perfect place to have a sofa like this made was with Clad Home. Clad Home offers the most custom options and the highest quality at the lowest prices. I work with them on pretty much every client project I have. They have countless sofa designs that I love, and then you can also just tweak everything for either style or personal comfort purposes if you so desire.

Lumbar Pillow | Solid Pillow | Striped Pillow (unavailable)

For my sofa, I went a bit off from the usual and skipped having an upholstered frame. It ended up being a fun little problem-solving exercise for us but I think it turned out great. I wanted the sleek look of a cushion right on the wood but I also wanted to make sure the cushion wouldn’t slide out every time someone sat down. I can happily say that does not happen and instead every single person (no exaggeration) immediately comments on how comfortable it is. I also just want to add that though I am so far from perfect in the world of sustainability I do try to be conscious about what I decorate my home with. For the most part, you’ll see I use custom or vintage almost exclusively. Yes, it’s because that’s often a hella stylish combination, but, it’s also the least gross? One thing I love about Clad Home is that their furniture is made in LA under ethical working conditions. Unlike most customers of Clad, I’ve even personally been to the factory and I can definitely attest that it’s true. This means a lot to me and I’m grateful Rosa cares enough to scale her business in a socially conscious way. Thank you Rosa for your help with this super comfy sectional of my dreams. And yes, I absolutely know that shopping consciously is a luxury not always available to consumers at all price points but I’m grateful I was able to take that into account and can encourage others to do the same if they’re able.

Frame TV | TV Art | Rug (unavailable) | Media Cabinet (custom)

As for the rest of my living room, I ended up keeping my old rug because it’s still one of my favorite rugs on the market and my custom-designed media cabinet came out exactly how I had hoped it would. It feels perfectly modern and warm to me. I love the scale of the wide doors and the fun open corners where I get to style my ever-growing book collection. I think we could say old Mel was obsessed with pretty pottery – current Mel is obsessed with pretty books. I also purchased my first frame TV which has been fun (especially when my neighbors and I try to connect to each other by accident) and I enlisted one of my BFFs and favorite artists/graphic designers Wyatt Carroll to create some tv art for me. He made a few others as well so my intention is to rotate them though I keep falling back to this cutie drawing I love so much. I also reached out to one of my favorite LA furniture makers Waka Waka and had a very simple custom coffee table made. I love their work. It’s chic, it’s simple and it’s warm (yes my three favorite things). Shin was also so so nice and the table was locally made to boot. 

Dining Set (vintage)

In the space next to my living room, we have my dining area. Now, this was a spot in my intro post where I said I really had no idea what to do. I did a bunch of layout tests with a folding table and thought I had maybe figured out a very specific table size I liked and then thankfully the solution found me… while I was aggressively hunting for it. So pretty much every morning during this decorating period I would search and search and search for vintage furniture and accessories. I’m an early riser so imagine my morning coffee spent in bed clicking between Etsy, Chairish, 1stDibs, and Instagram. Going to take another quick pause here to thank two of my BFFs, Wyatt and Remi, for whom I am so grateful for not dropping me to the curb when they had to wake up to 14 links from me every morning because I was up way before them and annoyingly sharing everything as I found it. Y’all are the best and I think it’s so funny that so many of my closest friends are from Seattle. Anyone up there want to hire me to help with their house so I can see what all the fuss is about?

Anyway, I digress, so that’s how I found my dining set. On good old Instagram. One of the many vintage accounts I follow posted my table and chairs and to say I responded in under 5 seconds was probably an understatement. It turns out they were posted by mistake but my quick intensity and over dm-ing sealed the deal anyway. They weren’t perfect but I knew I could make them be and I wouldn’t have to wait 11 weeks for them to ship across an ocean because they were already in LA. A fair amount of my indecision here was because I found my dream table in France and they just wouldn’t ship it to me because it would take too long and be too much money. I struggled to get over it. But anyway, I found my Alvar Aalto table locally and then I had the top repainted and the seats of the chairs changed as well. The chairs had this dark navy seat that wasn’t my style. I thought it would look fine to just paint the seats brown so I went to my awesome lacquering team and said ‘just match the tone of the wood please’ and then they airbrushed wood grain on the seat and now they look like real wood seats! I’m of course happy with the outcome but, I also think it’s hilarious. On top of the table, I placed a vintage Ikea table lamp from Etsy and then my favorite piece of flea market art that I have self-titled ‘Shirt Boy’ is gloriously shown off above. Cute, everything in this nook is vintage.

Shoe Cabinet (custom) | Ball Hooks

Right beside my dining area is my entry. I love the feel of having this big open sunny room but it does mean that once you walk into the space, you walk into the space. I’m a no-shoes-in-the-house girl and it is freezing in LA during the winter (I’m joking mom, I know it’s colder on the east coast!) so I needed somewhere to put my shoes and coats. Now this area is really small and apparently seeing clutter gives me anxiety so I knew I needed small closed storage; um yeah, in comes another custom piece of furniture! I feel like everyone knows the cool Ikea shoe cabinets that are narrow and somehow drop down to house shoes right? Well, I took that idea and tried to make it chicer. I sent my rough sketch to AD BUSCH, a custom furniture maker in Portland that I had actually found through Etsy last year, and asked if they thought they could make it happen (in my very very tight parameters). Aaron said he could definitely figure out the mechanism and then once renderings were approved, he quickly shipped me the finished cabinet and it was the first big moment that felt like I was close to wrapping up my home. No more piles of stuff by the door! AD Busch was super fun to work with, their drawings were clear and they truly worked really fast. I’m using a reception table they made for me in another project I hope to photograph soon and can’t wait to show y’all. Anyway, on top of this dope cabinet I placed a ceramic bowl I bought in Japan many years ago and a vintage mirror from Etsy (I do love you Etsy… sponsor me Etsy). For the final touches, I got these simple ball hooks and hung up my favorite jacket that I’ve been wearing almost every day all ‘winter’. 

Now, on the other side of the entry we have the space that I believe has gone through the biggest transformation; the kitchen. In my intro post you’ll see I was focusing on a lack of storage space, a lack of counter space, and a cute but not quite me ‘farmhouse vibe’. I had shown a mockup of flat face kitchen cabinets and thought that would be enough modernizing but, I ended up really going for it. Firstly I realized that living with butcher block countertops was not for me. I’m using them in a project that’s a vacation house because I think in a smaller usage they’re lovely to look at and totally usable, but for every day with me spilling water every time I use my fancy pitcher, I was just over it. Again, I don’t dislike butcher block counters, I think they’re so cute! Just wasn’t right for me and my everyday. So as I realized I wanted to change out the counters, I saw that I would then have a white on white kitchen which is super nice but again didn’t feel completely me. This is where the spiral ensued. I decided to change the countertop to a nice white pental quartz and… add wood faces to my existing cabinets to warm it all up. I had a custom island built for me that holds my dishes, as well as my pantry goods (another very adult move is dishes in a drawer right?), and I added a fun little shelving unit on the back to show off the aforementioned pottery and book collections. Thank you to everyone who commented on my intro post with all your ideas for how to switch out the cabinet faces! Between realizing I wanted wood (and therefore a very nuanced finish) and needing an Island (in very specific dimensions for my tiny kitchen), custom ended up being the only way.

Art

After my tiny reno, I then switched out the sconce to a vintage one I found on Etsy (I am in fact a broken record) and purchased a beautiful painting by artist Jack Paffett that I found on my morning internet dives. When Tessa came over to photograph everything I kinda realized that styling kitchens may be one of my favorite activities. (Call me Nancy Meyers.) I know there’s nothing groundbreaking about this kitchen facelift but it’s warm, it’s me, and man do I love it. As much as bold design choices are exciting, when a kitchen is open to the rest of the space I always think less is more. So that’s what I did.  

Chair (vintage) | Desk (custom)

The first room off of my kitchen has officially been transformed into my office and wow am I loving working at a big desktop computer with all my stuff and samples away in their specific homes. I hand sketched my dream desk and my amazing carpenters made a digital rendering and then made it happen. I love plywood and I hope one day I’m one of those cool people who live in a completely plywood box. I understand if you’re not for the vibe, but it’s a vibe I’m really into. My chair is vintage from Drosemod.com and Rarify.co who have really really nice quality vintage goods. I can’t remember how I first found them but now they’re a great vintage source for my projects. They also focus on sharing the importance of vintage pieces and the backgrounds of tons of vintage designers. I love the shape of this chair and I know a lot of people are sticklers for comfort in the office and I have to say, this chair is super comfy and I can use it for hours. 

Storage Cabinet (custom)

On the other side of my office, we have what some have called the ‘piece de resistance’. My gorgeous Reform custom storage cabinet. Nothing brings me joy like organizing. OK wait, that’s a lie but I did really enjoy organizing the inside of the cabinets as much as I enjoyed designing the outside. So first I found Reform online, immediately fell in love, made an appointment at their Santa Monica showroom, and went to touch and feel everything in person. I then designed a piece I thought would fit my needs (taking piles of crap off the floor) and had Reform help me confirm the correct pieces and details. A few weeks later I was so excited and home alone for the delivery that I then carried about 16 enormous boxes up the stairs by myself, broke into a huge sweat, and then immediately bumped into someone I wanted to think I was cool. It was a whirlwind 30 minutes but I was stoked to be one step closer to having it come together. Next up I had my amazing handyman (aka co-worker I spend the most time with), Edgar, come over to help me assemble it. We hit a few potential worry moments because my house is old and I would say not one wall is straight? But he did an amazing job and very quickly assembled the piece and attached it to the wall for safety purposes. 

Green Check Towels | Print

I really love the open cubbies I included (my surprise secret design element from my intro post). I knew I had a fair amount of styling bits to store so I thought it would be fun to have some open cubbies for my bigger pottery pieces to shine. But then ‘new me’ said no, you need books and that is how this beautiful little corner came together. The print next to it is by KJP Studio. I purchased it a few years ago (before the awesome Lisa Says Gah collaborations) but I hadn’t found the right place to hang it in my old house. The stool is from my trip to Japan (also a few years ago) where I brought an empty suitcase and then returned home with it completely filled with bowls, plates, trays, and the aforementioned stool. I had a lot of fun styling the desk portion of this room as well. You’ll see more cute books and um a lamp from Etsy, a lamp from Instagram, and a vintage Japanese radio from Etsy that I love way too much. Sorry, these aren’t linkable but maybe you’ll become a crazy person like me and start hunting Etsy every day at 6 am? 

Bed (custom)

Dresser (vintage)

Let’s move to the bedroom now. I love this room so much. It’s sunny, it’s bright, it’s happy…it’s also small and a little hard to photograph. There’s not too much different from my original plan but, I did have some things arrive that ended up not feeling right, so that was a bit of a delay/roller coaster. But first, let’s start with what went right. The custom bed I designed is exactly what I wanted. It’s slightly more off the ground than my last bed but it’s still low, calming, and comfy. My vintage dresser from Etsy has an amazing patina and I had a whole lot of fun styling it. Can you name the incredible/famous/world-renowned artist that’s accredited for the painting above it? Kidding. It was me. It was a DIY in my friend’s backyard. I wanted something bold but simple that added a small pop of color. Sometimes when you have something too specific in your mind all you can do is bring it to life. 

Nightstand | Rug | Table Lamp (vintage) | Art by Patrice Dworkin

My nightstands are also a huge success. I love having storage by my bed! Hello, easily accessible hand lotion, lip balm, and kindle. I mentioned this in my intro post but they’re by the awesome Domenic Fiorello Studio. The wood tone is so perfect. I feel like sometimes white oak can be too washed out for me (which is why I often go custom) but these nightstands are the perfect warmth. They’re also so well made and stylish to boot. Loving the open cubbies for my book problem and then I also styled them with some vintage lamps from 1stDibs that I am obsessed with. 

Bedding (off-white)

But before I found these amazing chrome and cream lamps, we hit problem number one for this room. The first pair of vintage lamps I purchased ended up feeling really small and just weren’t right. One of them also arrived shattered so though we (not perfectly) glued it back together I just already wasn’t feeling them in the space anymore. I still love the lamps though and that’s why the nondamaged one is in my office bookcase. Problem number two was the rug. I wanted a fun rug but unfortunately, it turns out I am not fun. Kidding. But, the first rug I purchased ended up really skewing my room a bit too 70s and though I was obsessed with how fluffy it felt, I knew it wasn’t quite right. I guess I’m not a shag girl. (By the way, this is not something I would do with clients but I was trying to take more left-field risks for myself). I then did another typical me thing where I had an exact idea of the perfect rug in my head that I was completely unable to find. I searched and searched and searched, and then found it on Etsy! But unfortunately, though I live and breathe Etsy, and I know there is an inherent risk with buying rugs without seeing them in person, this took the cake. In comes problem number 3. I purchased my dream rug and eagerly awaited its arrival. Except when the time came to unroll it and put it under my bed, I realized it was a completely different rug than the one I ordered. I thought I was going crazy because it had been a while so I barely remembered what I had ordered. I had a small inclination that I wouldn’t have bought this rug (because it wasn’t cute) so I went back and took screenshots of the listing just so I could do a side-by-side with the rug I physically had to see if there was anything off. Um, everything was off. Completely different texture. Completely different color. I of course then messaged the seller and said, ‘um hey, did you send me the wrong rug this isn’t right?’. They then said it was the exact same rug and that no one has ever complained before about it being different. And of course, guess what then happened…the original post was deleted. I then messaged back saying that I actually have side-by-side photos and you can see that this rug is grey and the one I ordered was cream (cough cough and a completely different weave and border and therefore a completely different rug). Eventually, I got a complete refund and I felt annoyingly guilty about it. I was duped! But, they managed to make me feel bad about wanting a refund from a small family-run company (not sure if that’s true but they did get me a little). Anyway, I do believe when you buy something that something is what should arrive. I eventually found exactly the rug I had been looking for all along from EQ3. My goal was something textured but not the kind of rugs that look like little pebble knots. That felt too similar to my living room and I wanted something softer. I’m obsessed with this one so all the hubbub is so far in the past. 

Wait, kidding we have problem number 4! Well, not really a problem but definitely something that took a whole lot of effort. As you know I am obsessed with the windows in my house. And even though I am an early riser I did feel like having no window treatments was too bright for me. My windows are quaint and small but unfortunately, that means that almost every company I reached out to said they were too small. Next in my saga of wanting something specific, I decided that since I had so many windows I really would need the treatments to be soft and lovely. So Japanese Shoji paper roll-up blinds became the goal. I scoured the internet but unfortunately due to covid apparently the one place everyone in the world gets them from wholesale was completely back-ordered in perpetuity. Thankfully I found someone in the UK who had some they could send to me. Unfortunately though, they were not the right size for my tiny windows but after some quick math and logistics I realized I could trim them down and make them work. The shades arrived, I purchased a Japanese hand saw (these things are amazing!) and had my favorite detail-oriented friend Wyatt come over to help (he is the actual best). First, we used an Exacto knife to carefully cut the paper down to the correct width and then we took the saw and carefully trimmed each end of the wood at the top and bottom. The first one took a bit of trial and error but from there things moved along and I am obsessed with how they turned out. Did I mention that every window was a slightly different size? That was fun too. 

Last but not least we have my little outdoor area that has turned out to be a dream. One of my besties has already copied it for her porch and as you know, imitation is the best form of flattery. Not too much has changed from my intro post since this was the first area to be pulled together. My cushions arrived, I put some throw pillows out, purchased some small planters on Etsy, and then added the plants. Moose is obsessed with her little outdoor area and likes to sleep out here in the sun some days. I may get one of those ugly door bug nets since she loves it so much so I could just let her hang there as much as she wants. That said, we do have a stray cat situation on my property. There is one in particular who thinks she is part of our HOA, but she is mistaken! Anyway, she has gotten a little too comfortable and has taken to naps on my bench. She scared me to death one night so I think my screams may have scared her down the stairs for good? But we’ll see. She doesn’t seem to respect the fact that this is Moose’s house after all. 

Well folks, here comes the end of my tour. Thank you so much for following along. I can’t wait to see what you have to say in the comments (perhaps my favorite part of sharing with the EHD world is you lovely people). As a typical outro I’ll say, check out my website, and follow me on Instagram please if you want to see Moose BTS and all the other photos of my house that didn’t make it to the blog today. 

And as a last note, I’d love to share something else new and exciting…I’ve started a Vlog! Over the last year plus, I have fallen in love with the medium and realized since my passion became my job, I wanted a new creative outlet. I’m having a lot of fun so if you want to see some daily vlogs where we run from project to project, or in a few weeks want to see the BTS of this shoot with Tessa, please check out my YouTube page and subscribe :). First episode is being released today! Thank you for all your support. And thanks Em for having me! Xoxo Mel Burstin 

*Design by Mel Burstin
**Photos by Tessa Neustadt

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Julia Sugarbaker
7 months ago

There is something so calming and satisfying about having such a precise vision that when something hits, you know it immediately. Layering pattern on pattern on color on mood is fun in its own way and can really help “dress up” a lot of quirks and “imperfections,” but I the discipline and commitment this took is also very brave. Warm minimalism not dead!

Bo
7 months ago

Disciplined is the operative word here. Love the aesthetic but totally unattainable for me. Who has this except the Japanese? But absolutely gorgeous and so satisfying to view these beautiful rooms. (Missed the bathroom.)

Molly
7 months ago

I dream of being this disciplined; with every photo I was thinking “where is all her crap?!” (“it all must be in those storage cabinets”…but then, nope, interior shot of cabinet: just as perfect and beautiful as everything else!). Currently, on my desk alone (not to mention my entire disaster of a house): a stack of greeting cards I’ve been meaning to send to friends, a mug full of custom pencils made for various occasions – e.g. my Gma’s 100th bday, a $2 bill my dad sent me, some seeds I need to winter sow, a broken gold bracelet I need to have repaired, 2 sets of headphones – one for computer, one for phone, 2 lip balms (one glossy and tinted for zooms, one carmex for serious business), two notebooks (one work, one home), pill organizer, backup wireless mouse, Nix paint color reader and cord, box of kleenex, fingerless gloves, I could go on and on. It’s hard for me to find the line between feeling ruled by my possessions and chucking out things that are meaningful to me and/or make my life easier.

🥰 Rusty
7 months ago
Reply to  Molly

Ha! That sounds a lot my my desk!🤣

Emma
7 months ago
Reply to  Molly

I’m not sure if you are looking for suggestions but I find that having a comprehensive task planner helps me a lot. I use a digital app where I can schedule tasks for the future and give them deadlines and categories. For instance, you could schedule gardening and then move those seeds someplace else until the day you need them. I put reminders for everything from taking my medicine to sending birthday cards (I put the “deadline” a week before the person’s birthday and it recurs annually). Those are just a few examples but I feel like it’s helped me cut down on visual clutter because I used to leave things out as a visual reminder and now I don’t have to. I also like the “sticker method” of decluttering where you put little colored stickers on things (like the color coding stickers you’d see at a garage sale) and whenever you use something you remove the sticker. Then you revisit at the end of six months or whatever and see what still has stickers on it – those are candidates for removal. Obviously some things are seasonal or needed for emergencies, but in general it helps me to get… Read more »

Lia
7 months ago
Reply to  Emma

What task organizer do you use?? Google calendar? I find I end up ignoring all my reminders 😩

Lizzie
7 months ago
Reply to  Molly

You forgot random lotions and little dishes for weird objects (why is there a marble on my desk?)! Your desk and my desk are probably best friends! I love this makeover and I crave the serenity, but I wouldn’t be able to attain this level of zen.

Karen
7 months ago

Gorgeous and cohesive. I love that your home isn’t full of a bunch of links for us to buy from. One of a kind. I was happy to see the pup at the end, too

CLP
7 months ago

I am almost vehemently anti-minimalist – and white stains when I as much as look at it – but this is stunning!

Amanda
7 months ago
Reply to  CLP

Same – total maximalist here – but i can appreciate the aesthetic!

Sarah
7 months ago

Since I have young kids, it was both terrifying and relaxing to look at the all white/cream interiors. Terrifying til I realized hey, I’m not bringing the crew in, so I can enjoy the serenity. Then calm as I realized I could just enjoy this. I love how each room flows into the next. The decor is edited without being sparse. And I love the window treatments you made. It’s beautiful!

Lia
7 months ago
Reply to  Sarah

Yes, parent with three kids here and we have so much stuff. It just creeps in. Art from school, tiny treasures, rocks from a walk, a stick, balloons. My kids are pack rats and it makes me crazy. Your house was a welcome breath of fresh air!

7 months ago

Amazing work. Congrats you.

KD
7 months ago

Lovely!

katy
7 months ago

Just came here to also give a 5 star review to Rosa Beltran and Clad Home. I bought our sofa from them and it was totally custom, totally affordable, and the only place I want to sit on a daily basis (we have another custom sofa in the same room, but my Clad one is my favorite). And they don’t seem to have been delayed by Covid like other sofa companies that make them in China and ship them on a boat because they’re made in LA.

Beautiful home, Mel!

Stassy
7 months ago

Wow! I love how you designed your space. Can you link where your bedroom shades are from?

🥰 Rusty
7 months ago
Reply to  Stassy

Didn’t she say they’re from the UK?

sarah in CT
7 months ago

Thanks so much!

Soozey
7 months ago

I love it! Gonna go look up all your home posts. Seeing how people live is fascinating and thank you for sharing so graciously !!!

Mary
7 months ago

This is my dream! I love how carefully you considered everything, and it’s perfect, Mel! Such a salve for the soul.

As a fellow Etsy fanatic, I’d love another Etsy roundup post from you. You have such a great eye and a passion for working with artisans and small businesses.

Nora
7 months ago

Same, and I especially love the art you chose.

Erin
7 months ago

I adore the way you had a vision and followed it throughout to create a space that is cohesive, charming, and calming as all heck. May it be a beautiful, happy nest for you!

Heather
7 months ago

Mel, I’ve always LOVED your style, and today’s post has me feeling all inspired. I feel like there is so much calm and breathing room in all of your spaces. Thank you for sharing as I’d love to recreate more of this feeling in my own home…now if I could just get my treasure hoarding children on board.

Juanita
7 months ago

This space is beautiful, congrats Mel and loved reading the post! Please tell us more about this secret world of custom-made furniture! Would love a separate post about how to conceive of and sketch out designs, source materials and builders, develop timelines, get cost estimates, et cetera. I have never thought of custom furniture being an option for someone who is not a zillionaire in a 10,000 sq ft home, but maybe it is—especially if you’re filling a specific need in your home that off-the-shelf furniture can’t do…

🥰 Rusty
7 months ago

The serenity!!!
Mel, your restraint and vision are impeccable.
I’m in awe.🤗
A calming, refreshing view of perfection.

I bow down to minimalism, but no way could I live like that. I have too many bits n bobs that mean so much to me, plus … I love colour! I have art ev-er-y-wh-ere and ceramics and family heirlooms and …. yup! Not a minimalist. 🤣🤣

I’m wondering how/why you don’t have window coverings in yoir living and kitchen areas?? I get that you love the gorgeous, cutie windows, but what about keeping the summer heat out and the winter warmth in? How does that go down?

Ally
7 months ago

This is so serene and beautifully done. I feel calmer just looking at these photos. Thanks for sharing the details of how you did it all. Would you mind telling us which white paint you chose– is it the same throughout? I like that it looks creamy, not stark.
PS Re the Etsy seller who sent you the wrong rug and then moaned that “no one else has ever complained,” i think you can be pretty sure that’s not the case…

Grant Klein
7 months ago

The true art of simplicity and discipline in minimalism. I love everything about this.

kk
7 months ago

Not my style but Im glad you enjoy it…
I’d love a link to the shoji paper roller shades…

Dena
7 months ago

This is beautifully relaxing! I am currently waiting for my Clad home sofa!!! The Paloma sofa in regent spruce!! It’s shipping really soon and I am so excited! I also went with Clad for environmental, off gassing, woman owned, and other reasons!

Jenni
7 months ago

Absolutely love this one. Mel’s design, makes me feel calm and focused – a place where I could work and relax. All the busy patterns that seem on trend these days are not for me. The overly colorful, patterned rooms make me feel unfocused and distracted. In these rooms, there’s too much going on, too much to look at, just too much.

Roberta Davis
7 months ago

Perfect! I love it! And it’s so cohesive. And, I agree- calming!

7 months ago

i loveeee your knife block; can you please share its source? or is it custom too?

Admin
7 months ago
Reply to  michelle

BergHOFF makes a similar one too!

Kj
7 months ago
Reply to  Julie Rose

There’s a good deal on Nordstrom Rack on the Berghoff one: https://www.nordstromrack.com/s/berghoff-international-natural-ron-knife-block/5768157?

Elisabeth
7 months ago

This is beautiful, and SO calming. A perfect home in which to think and create.

another jess
7 months ago

I love this, so beautiful and so serene. I also love the contrast between Malcolm’s reveal yesterday – two beautiful and inspirational reveals that could hardly be more different.

Kate
7 months ago

Gorgeous!
I also want to point out how helpful the photography is here in the before and after shots. Having the pictures taken from the same vantage point, with nearly identical perspective (and I think same lens?) lets us see the true differences.

Amy
7 months ago

This is gorgeous! Like other commenters, I’m inspired by your discipline and vision. I’m also inspired by your patience to wait and get exactly what you wanted for each space. Sometimes I buy things for my home that are almost right but not exactly what I want, and I’m not as happy with the end result. I need to be more patient: good things take time. Thank you Mel!

Andrea
7 months ago

Your first home is such a success! So lovely and tranquil. Great job.

Emma
7 months ago

Your place is gorgeous and your design and styling really complements the awesome canvas you started with – loving all the natural light and foliage outside! This is totally my style. I’m an architect who hates clutter so I get the battle between needing to store samples and not wanting to see piles of them all the time, especially now that we work from home. My latest struggle has been trying to put together a comprehensive emergency preparedness kit because it’s really against my nature to keep duplicates or back stock of things, but I know when an earthquake or wildfire or blackout comes I’ll be glad I gave up precious storage space to keep it all.

anon
7 months ago
Reply to  Emma

It’s so important to have emergency supplies. Everywhere has some kind of natural disaster (fire, flood, hurricane, earthquake, etc.) Have dups of the most important things and don’t forget to rotate stocks!

Alexandra Rose
7 months ago

Beautiful work. A couple of moments really stood out:

  1. Fabulous, chic custom shoe storage. I’ve thought about taking this Ikea design towards a custom design but this is the first time I’ve seen someone actually do it. So lovely and well done.
  2. The simple bedroom design takes my eye right out to the beautiful foliage outdoors. like a treehouse.

Also, what’s a TIC? Sometimes I feel sooo old. Hahaha! Does Emily know what all of these acronyms mean (she’s my age)???

Alexandra Rose
7 months ago
Reply to  Alexandra Rose

Oh, haha! Just read the old post about “Tenants in Common”. I thought it was another “MOTO” (makeover takeover) type acronym that only young cool people know 😉

Jessica
7 months ago

This is stunning! I particularly love what you did in the kitchen and would devour an entire post dedicated to how you redid the cabinets; as in what is your “very nuanced finish”, type of plywood, kick plates, other side of your island, drawer size, (hidden trash?), etc. Your design point of view is so clear and just wonderfully executed.

KP
7 months ago

PER. FEC. TION.

Chef’s kiss.

Mindy
7 months ago

So calming, very Cali, but where are the plants?!!!!

anon
7 months ago

I’m jealous of all your natural light. If it were mine there would be so many plants in your home it would be hard to count them. 🙂

Of course, I accidentally propagate my plants without even trying… 🙂

Linda Mclennan
7 months ago

Very nice arrangement in every room-peaceful calm thru-out the house.U totally get minimalism & the clear energy involved.Will be looking for other posts in the future!

Tara Lynch
7 months ago

I don’t have adequate words to describe how absolutely perfect every. single. detail. in your house is. I’m in love.

Susan from FOAS
7 months ago

Beautiful home, Mel. I would be interested in a budget, especially for the custom pieces because now you have me thinking that might be an option.

Re the “stray cat situation:” Many cats are very social with other cats, dogs, and humans. It sounds like the cat may be a neighbor who sees Moose and you as neighbors and friends. My 12 year old big orange guy loves to visit the Westie dog across the small park in back of us. He climbs a tree just outside of their fence, walks along the fence and waits for his friend to come out. I had no idea until the neighbor told me. Now she opens her gate so that Red can come in to visit and/or lets her dog out so that he can come visit Red. It’s very sweet. So maybe let it be and see how it goes?

Lauren
7 months ago

Really would love a followup post about the custom pieces. I never really thought it was in the realm of possibility for me but now I’m also thinking it might be an option and I’d love to learn more

jasmine
7 months ago

I often feel that I don’t know what I like, but then I saw this first image and physically felt my blood pressure dropping into meditation levels. This is gorgeous, I love it, I will never be it, but what an inspiration. Thank you for sharing. I love all of it.

Chelsea
7 months ago

Those blinds and the custom office cabinet make my heart so happy

jill
7 months ago

so boring! you need some art, girl or more stuff

Kj
7 months ago
Reply to  jill

EXTREMELY RUDE COMMENT. PLEASE DELETE.

Jenn
7 months ago

Mel, loooove your home! 😍 I have a question about your linen duvet cover: what duvet do you have inside, and does it fit well?

I have a linen cover that is way too big for its insert (even though they were from the same company! 🤦‍♀️) I’ve been looking and looking for a replacement. Thanks in advance for the advice!

Kari
7 months ago

When I thought I couldn’t be a minimalist anymore – it’s hard with little ones and I’m struggling to find anything to encourage me to pare down – this is exactly what I needed. Your things are thoughtful and that’s water for my soul. Thank you for sharing!

Stunning! So perfectly tailored for you. Also, Moose.

Heidi
7 months ago

Stunning!

Vera
7 months ago

So beautiful and serene! I especially love the living room; it’s warm and inviting. I want to return to this post any time I feel stressed just to gaze at the photos and feel my blood pressure drop.
Thanks for sharing Mel!

i wish i could be a minimalist and if i could, this would be such an inspo. i love so many things. that stool, that dining set, every single thing in that bedroom, the kitchen island (love love love that and now want one. i love this whole look so much. this is such a warm neutral. sigh. so so good.

HH
7 months ago

Love, love, love all of this. One detail that was great is the white faucet and how it just disappears into the background until you see how cool and modern it is. Our kitchen has the same color palette, except that our appliances are stainless steel (not my choice) and we have uppers – so obv this speaks to me.

EHD – please continue to feature Mel’s work (and interiors like it) for us readers not into maximalism or EEG, and who like things pared down. (I’m still here to look at all of the interiors, but most of the current decor is too busy for me.)

Bravo, Mel!

Monique Wright
7 months ago

I love the living room so much. It’s clean, well-styled and relaxing. Not cluttered with so much stuff. Nice work Mel!!!

Kate
7 months ago

Love, love, love! Your home is just perfection–dreaming of being able to accomplish something similar in our new-to-us house. Would you mind sharing info on the stove and fridge? I know they’re from the ‘before’ but it’s been impossible to find smaller-space appliances that will fit in our similarly-sized kitchen!

Kaitlin
7 months ago

Absolutely adore your home! I feel tranquil just looking at it. Where did you source the white table on your patio? My new balcony will be tiny so I’m looking for something with a small footprint.

7 months ago

It is beautiful! I wish my space were as neat and calming as this..

sarah in CT
7 months ago

Such beautiful spaces! And so helpful to learn about the companies from which you purchased/with which you worked. Can you give us contact information for the shoji blinds? They’re lovely. Thanks! And congratulations on your home!

sarah in CT
7 months ago

Such a beautiful home! Could you share contact information for the company that supplied your Japanese shoji window blinds? Thanks!

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