interior designInteriorssneak peeks

sneak peek: leah hennen

by anne


our first fabulous sneak peek comes from d*s reader and freelance writer leah hennen, of the blog more ways to waste time. she, her husband nick, and their two children have been in their circa-1939 oakland, ca home for nearly three years. she cracked me up with her comment that they worked on it from the top down (mainly cosmetic changes), and “are just about ready to start all over again (like painting the golden gate bridge).” but for now we’ll have to enjoy it in its present glory. there are so many great spaces in her home, so be sure toΒ click here for more fantastic images! stay tuned for one more sneak peek coming up at 1pm! [thanks, leah!]anne

[above:Β My husband and I hemmed and hawed over the paint color in our bedroom for about a year. Finally, he made an executive decision and choose Benjamin Moore’s Chocolate Sundae. I think he was right — the color is deep and luscious, but warm. I chose a satin finish for the paint, because I wanted the walls to literally glow at night. (We have 70-year-old lath and plaster, so the walls are definitely imperfect — a fact that the shinier paint does highlight, but I don’t mind the flaws.) Although the room faces north, it gets tons of light from a big corner window and a French door, so I wasn’t worried about it being too dark. Crisp white trim, bedding, and a large bookshelf, plus mirrored accents around the room help offset the deep color.


We got this Asian-style open bookshelf from Pier 1 awhile back, on sale for something like $200. The stuffed corgi was a present from my kids. The magazine collection represents only the last few months’ worth of shelter titles that I still need to tackle. It’s a sickness, I know.


I kind of hate the couch, chairs, and ottoman. Once I figure out what to replace them with — and if we ever save enough to actually buy those replacements — they’re going straight up on craigslist. My husband and I are both pretty tall (6’2&” and 5’10”), so the couch is more comfortable for us without the back cushions. The throw draped over the back is from Designers Guild, and the linen pillows are from Anna Joyce (a splurge from Portland’s Olio United), Sharon Spain, and Paper Cloud (both bought on super-duper clearance at Oakland’s Atomic Garden, the floor lamp is from IKEA. . . We really needed an entry table, but I didn’t want something solid that would block light from the glass bricks that flank our front door. This clear acrylic console table from CB2 was the perfect solution. The vintage metal locker baskets below hold shoes, kids’ backpacks, and other clutter that tends to pile up inside the front door.


I used the Orla Kiely wallpaper left over from my dining room hutch project to back the bookshelves. The ceramic horse head and turquoise dish are from eBay. The white bowl is from Perch!

This is an earlier iteration of the living and dining rooms.


The family room. We opted for daybeds instead of a couch, since this doubles as a guest room. The paneling is knotty pine. We painted it all white to help lighten up this dark basement room.


Except for the mirror and the books, everything in this picture was found on eBay; the metal “sculpture” is actually a vintage industrial cake beater. The latest evidence of my incurable lamp addiction always seems to end up on this cabinet.


The white Parsons table is from West Elm. The paint color is Benjamin Moore’s Soft Fern.

My 13-year-old’s lair. Let’s not go in here … I have a little problem when it comes to buying vintage kitchen items.


We tucked a small workspace and sewing- and crafting station into a corner of the dining room. I can set up here with the laptop, or my daughter can sew while I keep an eye on her. The desk is West Elm’s white Parsons. I found the vintage tulip-style chair (most likely by Burke) on eBay.


The credenza, Buddha head lamp, metal H, vintage letterpress letters, and ceramic bird figurines are yet more eBay finds; the black-and-white photo was a flea market score; the tiny print is one of Chris Crites’ paper bag mugshots; and the ceramic pear is from Heather Knight’s Etsy shop.

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