sneak peek: susy pilgrim waters


today’s sneak peek into brit-born illustrator/artist susy pilgrim water‘s boston home feels like the perfect place to ring in spring,  with its light and refreshing color palette. susy and her husband keith have been in this 1898 home for 14 years now, and have been remodeling it themselves ever since (each piece of susy work sold meant another small project could be finished). susy credits keith in the visualizing and designing of these spaces, while she’s the one who makes sure each space is covered.  click here to see additional images! {thanks, susy! – and richard szeliski for help with the photos} -anne

[above: The Aniline Eames chair is super comfy.The spray of lime green blossom and twigs turn in to Lights!  The open door is our back door, on to the deck.]

Our hall/entry way is very narrow, my “salon” of bunny paintings are ones I kept from over about 170 paintings I did for Matt Murphy’s pub.  Since that collection I  painted 5 4×4 ft larger panels (also of rabbits).  In most rooms I like to paint the ceiling the same color as the wall.  The strong angles and planes keep one guessing on the colors.

Here is our kitchen table with Tillie.  The bench is a very heavy old garden bench.  I silk screened the runner.

This is My desk. I was given it for my 18th Birthday by my parents as I headed off to art school In London. Its always pretty chaotic. Here I am painting and processing in one of my many sketch books- gorgeous watercolour paper, a one off from EM letterpress.  My other favorite  books are made made by Angela Liguori.  On my desk are probably 70 odd bottles of DR Martin inks, my collection of dip pens, Holbien gouache, and old fashioned peerless water colours, amongst other things… I work in mixed media, collage, paper, paint and  printing when I can. My brain feels much better when my desk is TIDY! So I dream on…

Keith took 2 years to rebuild our 3rd floor bedroom and bathroom.  He added height to the ceiling, built amazing built-in cupboards to help make use of all the nooks and crannies. He used old unfinished oak floor boards from the 1820s to make doors for the odd shaped cupboards.  We liked Bamboo for the floor.  Keith built our bed from marine grade maple reclaimed oak from the 1800s and slats from Ikea!  The walls are a colour called  Gosling (pratt and lambert; the trim called old praire – I dont know if they still make it). The floor tiles are La Fonda del Sol from Flor.

CLICK HERE for the rest of susy’s sneak peek after the jump!

The view of the fridge shows a circular flow, both front and back doors and the cabinets in the center of the room which we had to keep because of the chimney stack.

The 2nd floor bathroom also took almost two years.  Keith gutted the original bathroom, smashed the iron tub, replaced the plumbing, and put in the tiles.  The floor of the shower is small seaglass green tiles.  The wall color came first,  my favorite orange is PMS 157.  This is pretty close to it. The orange spot tiles were something I did at a paint your own pottery place with white 6 inch tiles from Home Depot.  We do like nice fixtures so those are all Hansgrobe.  Keith even replaced the window himself and once again poured the custom concrete surfaces.

These exquisite engravings which were hand coloured  are from the late 1700s.  They were done by my ancestors, the Custis’s.  I was lucky enough to have a French friend who was framing at the time, put them in a glass “sandwich,” then put copper tape over the edges (a Martha Stewart tip years ago).  The lamp is one of many Keith and I made together (he did the building, and I did the painting) – when we moved to Boston from Austin we could not  find or really afford the lamps we liked, so we made these folky lamps. They are all over our home.

Our wild fiberglass tub! It’s very groovy.  The counters were Keith’s first attempt at pouring custom concrete surfaces. The towels and soaps from pod and sarajo frieden.

angela liguori

Wow Susy, your home looks so stylish, and colorful! I’m so lucky I have been there! it feels as going to a design/art museum. Incredibly stunning!


I want to be her friend so I can come over and sit in that tub. Is that wrong? Her art really resonates with me as well. What a sanctuary!

Gillian Martin

Hi Susy,
The house looks gorgeous! Great palette and textures. Very inspiring, very you!….Looking forward to visiting soon!


susy your house looks gorgeous! i love seeing your artwork all over the house. and kudos to keith for all the design and building!


That’s a place to fall in love with! Wonderful colours, and everything ist just fine.


I love this, but I was expecting that first bathroom to be labeled as a “before”. I think it’s the tile (or the stripe within the tile? or the crazy orange?) that makes it look less sophisticated than the rest of this home.

Percy Bright

@Heather hahaha I agree 100% about that hideous bathroom. So strange and out of place. The rest of the house makes me feel happy though!


Love the house and it’s energy is so full of life & the bath tub is so unique, I LOVE it ! Is the dinning table a David Marsh table, I have one that’s similar…… just wondering.


Sharon, I’m with you – I so love seeing and making pictures of pears!

I would also love to know the resource for the tub. The colour is amazing, and the legs are to die for.

Thank you for sharing your inspiring home.


Count how many times the word love is used in the comments. It’s not just about great design but ultimately the home exudes the love from the family that lives there. You can’t style it and you can’t fake it.


The best thing about being at Susy and Keith’s house is being in the company of SUSY AND KEITH!


Answering a few questions:
We got the tub years ago from Expo( up market Home depot) I dont know the brand unfortunately.It came neutral and you chose the paint color.
Tillie is a cookerpoo.
Thanks for the positive comments.
BEST from susy


This home is a breath of fresh air — I love their style. It looks comfortable and lived in, yet sophisticated. Gorgeous!

Chloe C

O my freakin’ word, that collection of bunny paintings!
The whole place is lovely and fresh, but had to write because of the rabbits. Fun!


I have the delight and priviledge to live in suzie pilgrim waters ‘ neighborhood where I get to smile and be inspired by the artistic world she creates on her porch. Frequently changing with reused objects and furniture, it’s always creative, original and whimsical. Daphne


Love the sandwich frames, but I have a question…How on earth are they mounted or hung?


was wondering if any of your bunny paintings are for sale– i love them!


i never realized how many shades of white paint were out there until i decided to use white paint! if you recall the name of the white paint you used in the hall of bunnies, would you post it? many thanks.


this is so beautiful and inspiring! very design forward but it looks like real people live there (real awesome people!).


This house is so beautiful, bright, and homey! The bunnies made me laugh since I live right down the street from/ eat often at Matt Murphy’s. My friends and I always talk about the bunnies there and I am happy to know that there are many more of them in existence.


I love your house and particularly the paintings of the bunnies!!!

susy pilgrim waters

Gosh, I am novice at this.
The sandwich frames have a cardboard panel glued on the back with a hanging ring sewn on!
The colour in the hall is donald kaufman DK1.Its a pale celedon( sp?)
The present bunnies are not for sale…I will do commission if you are not in hurry!
Thanks for postive words.


I love the colors and the carefree spirit of this house. And Tillie is totally adorable.


Course its wonderful …its my little sister aint she just the greatest !