sneak peek: whitney + dustin of oh, darling!


Whitney and Dustin are the amazing wedding- and lifestyle-photography duo behind Oh, Darling. I met Whitney and Dustin this summer after they moved in January from Savannah so that Whitney, who also writes Darling Dexter, could return to school to study fashion design. And then in June, they moved again from a tiny East Village studio sublet to a larger space in Brooklyn. I was super impressed to find that, just a few months later, they were completely settled in! With Whitney in school, the couple is on a tight budget, so little by little they phase out cheaply made stuff in favor of items that they’ll want to keep forever. (See the full set on Flickr!) A big thanks to Whitney + Dustin! Amy A.

In old brownstones, we feel you really have to strike a balance with the old and the new. We’re renters, so cosmetically we can’t do very much and we try to incorporate old vintage pieces with newer, more functional furniture that allow us to maximize our small space. We tend to incorporate flea market/auction finds (wooden chair/typewriter table by bay window, end table with lamp by the couch, computer table, and bar stools) with more budget-friendly modern furnishings. We’re originally from the North Carolina mountains, so we usually get our vintage finds while visiting down south. We’ve found that to be a much cheaper and more enjoyable experience. We like our home to feel peaceful and clean, yet lived in. We’re not huge decorators so the process of putting our home together just happens simply and organically (and whenever we can afford things).

[We’re] trying to find items we really want to continue building our home with — consciously designed, well-made furnishings that are timeless and get better with age (instead of throw-aways that end up on the sidewalk every time we move). Space-wise, we could definitely use another closet or room — what New Yorker couldn’t? We literally have things packed into every possible nook, but try to get our home clean and clutter free.


Image above: Our apartment has 12-ft. tall ceilings! And in each room we have a non-working brick fireplace that goes from the floor to the ceiling.


Image above: We’ve had this couch for years. We can never seem to get rid of it — it’s the only piece of furniture that will fit in our tiny apartments. Thankfully it doubles as a futon for when we have guests.


Image above: We are lucky enough to have our own private deck that is amazing during the summer. Unfortunately we’re in the process of redecorating that space because of trees that fell during the tornadoes a few weeks ago!

CLICK HERE for more of Whitney + Dustin’s Brooklyn apartment!


Image above: We picked up these amazing vintage bar stools from the Brooklyn Flea.


Image above: We technically only have two rooms in our apartment, so making our space multifunctional is crucial. Our main living area serves as the kitchen, office, dining, and living room. We have these pretty amazing pocket doors that are around 10-ft. tall that separate our bedroom from the main living space.


Image above: Although we are north facing, we have an amazing bay window that pours in light all day long.


Image above: We often use props from previous photography jobs to decorate our apartment (e.g., red telephone, American flag, pennants, etc.).


Image above: To create more storage in our bathroom, I made a skirt for the sink with fabric, which really helped disguise disgusting pipes and gave us a little more space.

Sofia

Whitney and Dustin are photographing my wedding next summer. Sweet couple, amazing photographs, lovely home.

Justina

oh! That IS darling!! I love how they covered their sink. Such a goog storage idea too for TP and such…and swoon…that fireplace!

Martha

Just lovely! Can I ask where the bed-side tables came from? I’m looking for something exactly like that!

Anna of green gable

What a great apartment! I’ve been a fan of Whitney’s style since she posted on her apartment in Savannah. In fact, it was the pics of her home that got me hooked on her blog, and I’ve been following it ever since!

Elm

I’m in love! They mixed old and new so perfectly. I’m really envious of their brownstone! Now off to check out their flickr…

Whitney

Thanks guys! Our bed side tables are actually an ikea hack. They were part of the stolmen storage unit and when we no longer needed the unit…we added wheels to them to make our bed side tables.

christine

i love reading darling dexter… i figured whitney’s home would be well decorated but i had no idea it was this gorgeous!

Alex

Could you explain how you made the skirt around your sink? How did you attach the fabric, and were you concerned about the fabric getting dirty? I have a tiny sink like this in a rented apartment, and the skirt seems like a great solution.

carly mckenna

where or where is the cute little step stool from? the one by the door leading to the deck? i must get one asap!

Kristina

is that little sofa from urbn?

great space – seems palatial!

Celine

lovely home but how can one on a “tight budget” afford a place like this?!

Gayle

Everything is charming but using the flag as a a fireplace runner really is disturbing to me.

sarah

absolutely lovely! so sorry about your porch. hope it gets fixed for next spring/summer.

holly

My favorite photo is that image of the bar stools from the brooklyn flea…That says to me-” buy what you love”- looks like you’ve done a tremendous job of including the things which make a house a “home”. Thanks for the peek inside your world.

Andy

Hey Whitney + Dustin, my husband’s family has spent their summers in Black Mountain, NC since the 50s. Is that the area you’re from? We LOVE Asheville, and the Antique Tobacco Barn is the most amazing shopping experience.

Emily

I have that Zooey and Jenny picture taped to my wall too.
Darling Dexter is one of my favorite blogs. So great to see this apartment, it’s just perfect.

R. Pyper

Such a cute place — the high ceilings are so great, and those barstools are to die for.

I really hope we get to see photos of your patio sometime — I love to see the way people in NYC use their outdoor living space.

Alissa

I’m happy to see Darling Dexter and Design*Sponge uniting in this post and it has been fun to see how Whitney and Dustin’s places have changed since Savannah, Manhattan, and now Brooklyn. I love, love that beautiful space near the door to the deck!

Maggie Lyons

I had such a crummy Monday at work today (partly because I couldn’t squeeze in my daily Design*Sponge reading) and was DELIGHTED to see you feature Whitney + Dustin here. I literally just booked them for my April ’11 wedding today! Doesn’t that mean everything’s going to be awesome in life!?!?! I think so…they ROCK. Monday’s lookin’ up and their place is as *darling* as I expected.

grace

maggie

sorry about your crummy day- but congrats on your wedding, and working with dustin and whitney! you’re going to love them :)

grace

Mama V

Yes, please share how you got that sink skirt to stay up! It’s a brilliant idea that I’m dying to try in my Brooklyn apartment! Thanks!

Whitney

Thank you guys! To answer your questions…

– Our bedside tables are actually an ikea hack. They were part of the stolmen storage unit and when we no longer needed the unit, we put wheels on the drawers and turned them into our bedside tables.

– For the skirt around the sink — I used velcro to attach it to the sink…that way I could easily wash it if it got dirty. But honestly, it hasn’t gotten very dirty yet.

– The print above our couch is from Bold & Noble

– Our futon/tiny couch is from Urban Outfitters.

– We picked up the step stool from the Brooklyn Flea — so it’s a great vintage find.

– We’re actually originally from a small town in Western NC called Wilkesboro.

– Can’t wait for your weddings, Sofia & Maggie!

Neha

Love the steps with the vase and the telephone in the fire place….beautiful vintage stuff !!

bee

it just shows what can be achieved inexpensively in small spaces with white paint (and good taste, of course)

Liza

I’m with Jane…that quilt IS perfection! The log cabin pattern is one of my favorites. I love how all the colors stand out against the white. It looks so cozy!

tenille

i don’t know whitney personally but i’m pretty sure we could be friends! love, love, love the apartment and amazing style. i spy a Magbooth four grid photo in the last snapshot which means whitney & dustin are super awesome in my eyes. makes my heart happy! xoxo

Benjamin

+1 on the Quilt. I’ve been looking for one exactly like that for some time! Where can you get one like that? [knowing that I have very little sewing ability]

Whitney

My mom actually won that quilt in a raffle! So I can’t take any credit for it..but we love too :)

Inez

hi! love your place! i was wondering where did you get your shower curtain from? is it fabric or the vinyl kind?

love your living room:~)

noelia

Lovely! Can you tell me where you got that coffee table? I’m in the midst of an exhausting coffee table hunt.

Susan

Very cute place, but seriously, I’m also really disturbed at their treatment of the American flag and even more disturbed that only ONE person commented on that.

There are rules for how to treat the flag. If you’re going for a “look” use something else. Seriously.

Leigh

I will second Gayle & that I don’t find the use of a tattered American flag as a fire place runner appropriate.

I know that the flag code isn’t law & it makes me old fashioned to believe that people should respect our flag for what it is, a symbol of our country, but that’s certainly not the way our flags are intended to be used.

& no thanks, I won’t be getting over myself, before it is suggested, I’m perfectly content being old fashioned & patriotic.

dessita

The interior design here is realy lovely. The pictures are great and made from professional photographers. The accessoaries that are corelates with memories are just amasing. The proporsions, the placess of all the furnitures and accessoaries are the best. Feels like the 60s ;)

Kim at SassySisterVintage

What a cute place! I especially like the red phone in the fireplace. This apt. is good sized compared to some of them I saw when visiting Williamsburg, Brooklyn a while back.

Whitney

The old 48-star flag was purchased for a photo shoot (from a bin full of other old, tattered flags) at a flea market..just thought we’d hang on to it because its sort of a unique historic relic. Honestly, we simply thought it might be more respectful to hang on to it rather than running the risk of it ending back up on the floor of a flea market or worse. Never meant it to be offensive or thought it might be construed as such. Just the opposite actually. Maybe we should have mentioned all of that up front. But, thanks for calling us out..we appreciate the constructive feedback!

Eileen 2

The flag on the mantle: I love it. This is coming from someone who always puts the flag on her city porch on holidays. Someone who has a “no bumper sticker” rule for her car, but has been tinkering with the notion of adding one small rectangular sticker: A simple US flag. I carried the flag in my Girl Scout troop as a young girl, etc. Decorated my bedroom in red/white/blue with stars & stripes in 1976. Your old flag is wonderful.

Jade

This apartment is simply perfection: The wallmounted guitar, the mannequins, the framed maps & the you are my sunshine plaque. The red phone in the fireplace (the fireplaces & ceilings themselves) My dream abode!

gwyn

wonderful place! where did you get that amazing coffee table – I have been searching for one just like it!

thanks!!!

Yvonne

where is the side table beside the couch from? Love it!! Lovely home!!!

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