Posted by: littlebitofparadise | November 13, 2015

Come On In (House Tour Part One)


Welcome to our home in pictures!

I so wish we could do this in person, and after showing you around I could make you a cup of tea and we could sink deep into my droopy IKEA couch and settle under the throw blankets for a nice long chat. I’d even turn up Pandora on the TV so we could better ignore our kids playing dress-up in the upstairs puppet show closet or Hot Wheels on the car rug in the study. And I’d wish you could stay for hours and hours. Because that’s the reason for having a house and loving the design and decorating process: so you can make it a home…so you can fearlessly fling open the doors and give hugs and say c’mon in!, and stay a while.

I try to be as authentic as possible on my blog, and I must admit this post feels a little bit less so, because before I took these pictures I did the crazy 39-weeks-pregnant-fully-nesting thing and cleaned and dusted every room. And when I took the pictures I told Mark to pick up the Lego pieces from the family room floor, and I had Luke and Rett hold off on dumping all the stuffed animals on their floor and making a fort (again) until after I snapped their room pics. It was also the day I washed their sheets and actually made their beds.

I guess this is my way of offering a disclaimer that when you DO come over for tea, please expect to find more dust, more Hot Wheels, a heckuva lot more Legos, and the throw pillows and snuggle blankets in the family room will be vastly re-arranged when you come, and not by me. :o)

Some bloggers like to offer details on where all the furniture and design elements in the space come from. I don’t plan to do that here. Mainly because the answer 88% of the time is “Craigslist”, and at least 10% of the rest of the time can be filed under “thrifted”, “eBay,” “hand-me-down,” “IKEA” or “DIY/handmade” (read that last one as “probably spray painted.”)

I paint everything. All the time. And when I get sick of a color, I buy a different $4 can of spray paint at Home Depot and spray it again. It’s either a sick addiction or my personal therapy, I suppose. There are less than 4 new pieces of furniture in our home post-fire, with the added touches of all new downstairs rugs and lamps and linens, since those were all permanently lost due to smoke damage. If you have a specific question about where something you see came from, or how I made it, please post about it in the blog comments to this post and I’ll go through and answer each one, promise! If it’s a DIY thing, I’ll try to share the Pinterest pin that inspired me or where I got my zany idea from.

So come on in and see!

PART ONE: THE UPSTAIRS (Part Two with Downstairs Pics Coming soon!) 



All of the furniture in this room was a really rough oak color – we purchased the cheapest master bedroom set we could find on Craigslist when we got home from our honeymoon. Neither of us loved it but it was functional. I decided to chalk paint the entire set in Annie Sloan Graphite and Pure White, and now we love it! Chalk paint is my new favorite – so easy to work with and so forgiving for a messy painter like me.








Until I met Peter I didn’t know that there was a Saint Stephanie, a second century Christian martyr along with Saint Victor. Peter had this icon of St. Stephanie commissioned for me shortly after we were married, and it took the artist several years to complete. He gave it to me for a 5th anniversary gift. Isn’t it amazing?


This corner will be my nursing nook very soon, and the baby’s bassinet will be set up here by the window. We’ve never had a TV in our room before, but Peter just moved it up last week in preparation for “operation keep Steph and newborn baby in bed for as long as possible.” If you have a good Amazon Prime or Netflix series addiction up your sleeve do share!

2house39  2house41


The hallway landing on our second floor is small, but we use it a lot. The dark little desk under the stairs is my great-great Grandfathers. It was passed down to my great aunt who lived inn the midwest, and when she passed away I won this item in her home’s antique auction. I love having a piece of my past here, and we use the desk mainly for storage and display. The white dresser across the space was from my room as a teenager, and I use it to hold all three boys’ clothing. We have an upstairs laundry room and I LOVE being able to put their clothes away right here in the hallway, even during naptime when their room is occupied. I keep their coats, vests, church clothes and shoes in their little closet, and the rest of their (minimalist to the max) clothing is here.




I painted the bathroom and the laundry room, which is behind the bathroom, Silver Sage by Restoration Hardware (via Sherwin WIlliams) and I love it. Costco prints and posters from our travels make the room look cute for guests and not all about the kids, which I actually really like. It feels cleaner, minus the occasional tub full of bath toys. :o)





This is a new combined room for our three boys. It used to be our Peter Rabbit-themed baby nursery before the fire, but after 6 months of sleeping in the same bed in hotels, we knew they were most definitely ready to share a room together. I kept the firetruck theme that had been in Mark and Luke’s room, and found a third matching firetruck quilt on eBay for Rett’s bed. The walls are painted light blue, and my accent color was Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in Empire Red (my childhood desk is painted, as well as accent pieces, my “firetruck ladder bookshelf” (thank you IKEA spice racks) and a few other touches to pull in the rustic red/vintage look.)











(One of the best ideas I ever had was to take their 2yo picture in the exact same clothes. By the time this outfit got to Rett it’s a bit frayed – but I love that I can see all three of them at the same age in the same outfit!) 



The original owners built a small puppet-show closet in this room for their only daughter. My boys use it for building block cities or Hot wheels track. I also have a bin with all their dress up clothes in there.



Get ready to see some PINK!!!

Instead of going with a baby “theme” for the baby’s room, which will also double as our guest room, I just wanted to keep things simple with some basic colors, and use my mom’s vintage baby things and my baby things as a few baby decor pieces.





The dress hanging on the wall was my mom’s, someone embroidered the blanket for my mom, and the framed embroidery on the wall was made for me by my great grandmother when I was born. The vintage trunk was my mom’s toy chest as a child.




The framed pink picture is actually a greeting card that my great grandmother wrote to my parents on the occasion of my birth. So fun that my mom kept it for me! And the baby doll was my 7th birthday present. Shes’ wearing one of my baby outfits.



So that’s the upstairs! Will post our main floor soon. After the baby arrives I’ll post some postpartum life pics on Instagram to make up for these vacuumed floors. LOL.

Have a blessed and happy weekend!





  1. Steph I’m in love! What a beautiful, classy, authentic space you’ve created. I love that you have minimalist wardrobes for your kids, too. Number one way to reduce stress and tantruming re: not being in the preferred state of nudity. My kids only have about 8 outfits apiece per season, and it is MORE than enough. (and until they do their own laundry from start to finish, that’s all they’re getting, haha)

  2. You are amazing in so many ways. I love every inch of your space. Please help me with mine!! I really want to do chalk painting and would love to hear about your experience with it.

  3. Thanks, Steph! I can’t wait to visit your home again!! We are finally painting the interior of our home after two years! We tried SW Honest Blue and Contemplative Blue in D’s bedroom, but they seem too dark. And the light blues seemed too light or too “aqua-ish”, haha. What light blue did you use? We settled (or at least I think we have settled) on BM Stonington Gray (in SW) since it can pick up blues, and D’S quilt is blue and white (and soon-to-be-curtains). Some space shuttle decals may add color. What are your thoughts on getting blue “right” or going grey instead??
    Our study will be SW Quiet Moments and looks similar to your bathroom/laundry relaxing green-grey. I LOVE that color!!! Thanks, again, for sharing, and welcome home! XOXO

    • Hi Carla! Getting blue right is hard, but gray can be hard too. Boys room is SW Caught in the Rain. It’s a soft blue and I like it for their space. If you’re having trouble with paints looking too dark, pick a color you love and then go one shade up from it on the color chart. I learned that trick from my mom and it often works great.

  4. Oh, Steph – I LOVE your style!!!! Thank you for inviting me over for tea, if only virtually for now 😉 I absolutely love your baby girl’s room…and I had no idea about St. Stephanie! What a beautiful art piece! Praying for you in these final moments for baby girl’s arrival! 🙂

  5. I love this…you are so talented in the home decor department! Thank you for the tour and the inspiration–sooo gonna try to copy your style!

    Prayers for you and baby!

  6. […] Part One (upstairs) can be viewed here. […]

  7. Stephanie you are an amazing home-maker! What a lovely space! Your house looks so beautiful! Congratulations:)

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