The process of getting ready for the San Francisco Chronicle (check out the article) to shoot our home involved much anguish over pillow and plant placements, too much shopping, and the rearranging of many pieces of furniture, only to replace most of it back to where it was in the first place.
I wanted it to be an honest re-org, not a shove-things-in-the-closet one, so I cleaned out not only the obvious stuff, but also items no one could even see. I went through drawers and closets, tossed or gave away A LOT of clips, magazines, books DVDs, CDs, clothes Frida outgrew, clothes I outgrew. I channeled my inner Marie Kondo (though I ran out of time to finish in every room—next photoshoot!).
It was a lot of work, but it felt GOOD when the pictures were finally taken. I highly recommend a date with a photographer as a motivator for getting your home in order and looking fresh in that way the kids say it. Even if you’re not a blogger or don’t have a newspaper feature hanging over your head, maybe give yourself a deadline to snap some photos to post on Facebook or Instagram, silly as that sounds now that I read it back to myself. I’m making a point to do it bi-annually, because otherwise things get really out of hand. And deadlines are the only way I keep life moving forward productively.
Anyway, here are some photos in addition to the ones that appeared in the article to show you how it turned out. I increased by plant-to-human ratio to about 2:1, and borrowed many pieces from Room & Board that I was very sad to have to return (I restrained myself and only kept two baskets!).
Speaking of Room & Board, I highly recommend stopping by their San Francisco store because at the moment they have some beautiful accessories (many of which you’ll see in the photos) that are available in-store only. I also wrote about the collection at Forbes if you’d like to learn more.
My favorite part of doing this article, besides having a re-designed, cleaned-up house afterwards, was helping the author come up with five tips for creating a ’70s vibe but keeping in modern. Here’s a little summary of each idea, and hopefully the photos illustrate them well!
2. Dealing with carpet
If you, too, have a rental with a lot of carpet and it’s not your favorite, counteract the texture overload with smooth surfaces like glass and polished wood. And/or camouflage it with flat weave throw rugs (and a sheepskin throw never hurts).
It was the favorite color of the ’70s, and I love it too but in small doses.
4. Clashing patters
See The Jungalow and my piles of kilim pillows (thank you Kourosh’s mom!)
5. Natural elements
I love to bring the inside out. Branches, plants, forest wallpaper, geodes, shells, starfish—bring ’em on.
Coffee table details. The wing is Nate Berkus for Target. The boxes are from Iran.
The basement has always been a challenge but it’s currently in the best shape it’s been in since we moved in five years ago. The wallpaper is original, the bar is vintage. The lamp base is vintage from Community Thrift in San Francisco, the lampshade is from City Lights Lighting Showroom. The desk was here when we moved in. The triangle pillow is from Room & Board, the other one is from Iran.
The framed nautical flags are from Room & Board, as is the TV stand. The sheepskin is from trusty old Costco.
This painting was in my grandmother’s “parlor” (as she called it) for my entire life, and I always loved it. When she passed away a few years ago, my dad was thoughtful enough to ship it to me from Pennsylvania. I love it even more now. The indigo mud cloth is from Room & Board, as are the wood vessel and the basket on the wall. The butterfly sketch was a gift from my BFF and is a treasure.
The lattice ceramic pot is by Giselle Hicks and purchased at Yonder Shop.
I love this elephant, he is from West Elm. The table is from Room & Board, and the artwork is by Sean Newport.
The dining table and benches are vintage from the now shuttered X21 in San Francisco. The Bob Dylan poster is from AllPosters.
It’s too bad she’s so camera shy.
The velvet pillows are from Room & Board.
Hope you enjoyed! Peace!!
[Photos by Anna-Alexia Basile]