Sneak Peek: Greg & Melissa Hoy

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Greg Hoy is the president of Happy Cog, an award-winning boutique digital design agency with offices in New York, Philadelphia and Austin, and he loves to unplug by cooking. His wife, Melissa, is a former display coordinator and merchandiser for Anthropologie and Terrain who spends much of her spare time scavenging flea markets and antique shops for her own creations for her website, Papersatchel. Greg is on the road for work a lot these days, so when he’s not traveling or at the office, he cherishes his time spent at home with Melissa and their two-year-old, Nash (with another little one on the way!). When it comes to style, Greg is a modernist in favor of clean lines, shades of gray and dark wood (a typical male, he jokes). Meanwhile, Melissa prefers a classic, comfortable, vintage feel. When they were starting their family, they knew they needed more space and came across this 1920s Pennsylvania schist stone home in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania, that had undergone a renovation in the mid-2000s. The house’s dichotomy of new and old was the perfect fit for them. A big thanks to Greg and Melissa and to Laura Kicey for the photos! — Anne

Image above: We call this formal living room the “white” room because it’s spare, and we are considering white furniture. It features intricate Mercer tile from the Moravian Pottery and Tile Works. The mantle houses some of Melissa’s light sculptures, our vintage wedding cake toppers, and a truck from our wedding table centerpiece. The wreath was a housewarming gift made by a friend.


Image above: Nash’s room’s red wall (we have yet to repaint since we’ve moved in) overlooks the steel bridge that spans the kitchen added during the renovation. We collected paint-by-numbers for Nash’s nursery throughout the entire pregnancy with a firm $20 price cap. We now have lots of paint-by-numbers.

See more inside Greg and Melissa’s home after the jump . . .


Image above: The acoustics are amazing in the formal living room, due to the lack of furniture (we moved to the suburbs from a city home that was one-third the size). It was a no-brainer when Melissa’s brother-in-law asked us to care for his grand piano while he moved his family to Rome. We’re happy to piano-sit, and occasionally pretend we can play it.


Image above: This is the “informal” side of the house, and it was added on in the ’30s. It was a totally separate living quarters for many years. We had a super-cozy rug bound by The Home Depot, with lots of extra padding beneath for roughhousing with Nash. The fireplace is one of the two working fireplaces of the four in our home, so we spend much of the fall and winter in here. The sofas are from Restoration Hardware. Upon moving in, we agonized over the right shade of gray from Benjamin Moore for three days and finally landed on “Timber Wolf.” The adjacent informal dining room is just a few shades lighter in “Silvery Moon.”


Image above: There are so many doors and windows in our home, and the light is amazing, even on rainy days. We love how each room opens to the next. It definitely rambles, which is part of its charm.


Image above: When the previous owners renovated, Wesley Wei’s design called for reclaiming space from what was once a covered patio room. That space is now the kitchen, and the steel bridge above traverses it, connecting the original portion of the home to the 1930s addition upstairs. It makes a statement, and we love watching people’s reactions when they see it. We spend 95% of our time at home in this kitchen, much of it on the floor playing with trains and trucks with Nash.


Image above: What made a significant impression on us was the custom Bulthaup kitchen. I feel like a professional chef in it. I do all the cooking, and Melissa does all the cleanup. It’s our deal.


Image above: Wesley Wei, the architect who designed the renovation, added details throughout, such as these cut-through windows that allow you to see from one end of the home to the other, opening it up.


Image above: This is a view from the kitchen into our formal dining room, with the formal living room beyond it. We keep a play mat for Nash in the kitchen, where he likes to play with his trains and trucks. Melissa didn’t shoot that deer in the dining room; she found him somewhere. She calls him Paco. This is a great example of Melissa “softening up” what was a very modern space when we moved in.


Image above: We love the amount of space we have here, after bursting at the seams in our city townhouse. While I once may have considered my wife a “hoarder,” she has assured me she is only a “collector.” Space makes all the difference, since editing was not always her strength. From here, you can see a peek of the Orla Kiely-clad walls in Melissa’s art studio. She’s Kiely crazy.


Image above: The chandelier in the informal dining room is from Pottery Barn, and we often find our cats, Dottie and Pearl, either napping here or employing our chairs as scratching posts. The Doily Rug was from Anthropologie two years ago.


Image above: The steel bridge traverses the kitchen below and overlooks the back patio and lawn and leads right to my home office, which can be closed off by a pocket door.


Image above: This will become the nursery for our second child, but we love the idea of the boys sharing these twin beds someday. The faux bois bolster pillows are from the Land of Nod, and here is just a few more of our paint-by-numbers collection.


Image above: Nash’s room is a hodgepodge of art and collected vintage items. We acquired the orange letters at a Three Potato Four barn sale (I criticized Melissa’s letter kerning, and she gave me the evil eye), and the USA wall piece was crafted by a friend. The mobile is from Boukhou, and the other wall decor is from Something’s Hiding in Here, Made by Hank, doe-c-doe, and Art Star.


Image above: Our mudroom is something we never knew we needed but now we can’t live without, [providing] ample stroller parking. Melissa is slowly filling the hanging glass orbs with soft sculpture plants, and Nash will learn to tie his shoes here.


Image above: My home office doubles as my music room, where I keep my guitars and basses, amps, and turntable. This room probably best articulates my aesthetic. Everything has to line up all neat like. I love the sofa, which is from Crate & Barrel.


Image above: Melissa’s art room doubles as Nash’s toy storage room. It’s amazing how she always fits 20 gallons into a 10-gallon bucket.


Image above: We are dreading changing the paint color in Nash’s room because the 10′ radiator also boasts the reddest of all the reds. But that will be our next project. The stuffed lion head was scored at a Three Potato Four barn sale at a discount. As Stu was ringing us up, he said, “I hope this isn’t a Steiff.” Melissa found a “Made in China” tag on it later that day. No worries.


Image above: We hung painted type trays on the wall in the upstairs hallway to house the overflow of little toy trucks and cars. Nash picks one or two to take to bed each night. I am a big commercial aviation geek, so we pulled the colors right from the TWA print.


Image above: The light in our bedroom is amazing, as we have a wall of windows overlooking all the large trees in the neighborhood. Each day, we feel like we awake in a treehouse. Swarthmore has tons of old-growth specimen trees. The gingham wall was painted using Benjamin Moore’s “Revere Pewter,” and the bench is Benjamin Moore’s “Yolk.”


Image above: Melissa had a box of antlers (as people do) acquired from Renninger’s under her art room desk for a year. Finally, they have a home. On our wall. In our bedroom.


Image above: Our cats, Dottie and Pearl, nap while Nash naps. The house is silent from 1–3pm each day. We love the herringbone pattern of the fireplace brick on the newer side of the house. Melissa rewired the mantle sconces and used two of the mounted antlers as light fixtures. The sculpture by the fireplace is a light fixture Melissa made me for our first Christmas together.


Image above: Our home is made of Pennsylvania Schist mined from local quarries at the turn of the century. We recently landscaped, so all the plants are brand new and very small. We found the zinc planters at Terrain, and we love the way the grasses sprout in the fall. I have been working diligently on the lawn for a year, and I love it. Our garage is a tractor attachment and power tool museum.


Image above: This year we built our first raised garden beds. We had an amazing crop of Swiss chard until a deer decimated it in the blink of an eye. Luckily, he didn’t like arugula or mustard greens. We also replaced the old stone walkways with bluestone to match the bluestone wall in our backyard.

MB@YarnUiPhoneApp

Re painting the red radiators…I wouldn’t bother…simply have a custom-made radiator cover (perhaps in wood) made to fit the radiators. It will become a favorite spot on cold days. Or search online for an old radiator cover with the correct measurements to fit your radiator.

Anna

I love your home!!! Everything about it is stunning!!! Those sofas from RH are fabulous!!!

Lindsey

absolutely unreal. i love how all the different styles and touches come together in such a beautifully harmonious space. quite possible my favorite sneak peek to date :)

Carey

Perfect Home!! And I love the Gettysburg College Degree featured prominately in the music room.

Marla Eizik

Pretty sure this is my dream home! Gorgeous and tastefully decorated. You guys have a real talent for putting a home together. Love it!

Dodie Jacobi

What you love most is so touching! In creating an enveloping home, you are indeed creating a member of the family as beloved as one’s parents.

Lori

Thanks for naming the living room paint brand and color. As soon as I saw that picture I wanted to know what it was. Appreciate it!

Lizabeth

Like the dining room light fixture with the mason jars. I think I have enough sitting around the house to try a DIY on that!

Nancy D

Wow I just love the whole vibe of the place and will definitely look into Papersatchel to see what’s going on.

Camie

I love the fireplaces with the modern updates, such a great combo! Beautifully styled but still looks like kids can live in it!

Jamie

I love what comes out with the combination of your two styles. The living room paint color is perfect! Where are the leather couches from? My favorite is the little Nash hand at the end.

Jamie

Nevermind, re-read and saw the sofas are Restoration Hardware. Thanks!

Heidi S.

I live right near there (in a far smaller house). I remember when the house was on the market. It is nice to see how warm it feels inside.

Sara Kalashian

keep the red wall! Love it! (The radiator cover is a nice idea to break it up a bit.) Really great home!

Susan

Great to “meet” another PA local…love the use of area artisans. Beautifully curated home!

preveena

I love this house. I woudnt change the red wall, i like the contrast of it against the wood flooring and neutral surroundings. The backdrop against the master bed is beautiful, is that a wallcovering or paint. So many elements in this house i am love with. Great work!

Amy Keller

Could you please tell me what your floors in the kitchen and bedroom are. They are beautiful and we are in the process of choosing a new floor right now. Thanks!

Julia

This is beautiful! What is in the fireplace in the white living room? I’m also have a non-working fireplace and I’m trying to think of something creative I can put in it. Design Sponge – you guys should do a “best of” for alternative fireplaces!

Lisa

OMG… I would move right in, no questions asked. Love this place!

Kate @ The Loud and Clear

What a beautiful home! I’m agonizing over Benjamin Moore grays at the moment too and there are some great examples here. I especially loved the commentary. “A box of antlers (as people do).” Hilarious.

Jesselyn

What an awesome house! I love the kitchen the openness just slays me.
Also, love Greg’s personality he and his family sounds like we could really be friends and hang out in their house all the time.

Greg Hoy

You all are so nice. Commenters on Design*Sponge are so civilized. You should see with the crap I have to deal with in my line of work sometimes :) What a treat.

how2home

This is such a lovely home! There are so many interesting elements in this house that i’ve never seen before! The industrial style hallway is brilliant and the tiles in the living room is beautiful. Great home!

Allison

Is it wrong that the description of each photograph was my favorite part of this? The home is lovely, but your wit and charming commentary was even better! But as a Pennsylvanian living in Maine, I miss home, and it was nice to see peeks of it here. Thanks for letting us into your home!

dana

I love this house! What a treasure!
However the line that made me laugh out loud was “Melissa had a box of antlers (as people do)”. Um….I do. Plus, I have a wall of fake taxidermy that makes people look sideways at me. Glad to know I have a kindred spirit out there.

bah

Love the house inside and out. Your commentary is really terrific and you’ll be a good steward of this lovely home. Annoying question: possible to reveal the source of the crib. Thank you!

Roxanne Hallisey

Had to come back to this today, Tuesday, because I CANNOT get this house out of my head! I literally saw those cut away windows and that room with the piano in my sleep! I always stop myself before saying this, but this might be my favorite sneak peak EVER!

Melissa Hoy

Thanks for all the lovely comments!

Here are a few answers to the above questions:
We painted the gingham walls in the bedroom using a technique we found online– the secret ingredient is the mixing glaze.

The kitchen floor is quarter sawn oak and our master bedroom floor is walnut.

The white room fireplace is filled with birch cut to various heights and topped with mercury glass votives.

The crib is the Sparrow crib in grey by Oeuf NYC.

About the red: it’s really kind of an angry red in person… While we LOVE a good pop color, that red is just not it for us… But it may be a long time before that project is tackled; next up is the new nursery :)))

Tracy A

Lovely! And, as others have said, the commentary was really enjoyable!

Jesse Lu

The interior of this home is very fun, but the exterior, oooh it’s spooky-magical. I love all that lush greenery surrounding the stone home. What a wonderful place to come home to and make memories in.

Karen

Dream home, by far. It looks amazingly warm, cozy but not in a squishy way, eclectic, classy and just plain beautiful. Love your kitchen clock/calendar. Where did you find it? Thanks for letting us in……to drool!

A Day in May

This home is beautiful on the inside and out – and to have so much light and space must be a nice change after living in the city. Great job incorporating your own style and personality into this home.

marlene

Everything about your home is amazing. Seriously. And the old stones on the outside (and inside!) are killing me. I am a huge Orla fan too and am trying to figure which room in our house will get wallpapered when we move into it after our cross country trip. Your home truly is an inspiration!!

Christine

I love the fact that this house looks just like a house in a catalog! The captions are so perfect for a catalog too! You should really submit this to some sort of catalog contest. I love how you include the stores where you bought everything so that I can copy your look so easily. Thanks!

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