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Interiorssneak peeks

This Ranch-Style Home Brims with Nostalgia

by Garrett Fleming

Cora was a perfectionist. 100 years old, she never let a cobweb linger or a spill last more than a few seconds. Dedicated to immaculately maintaining the integrity of her 1950s charmer in Grand Rapids, MI, she left its second owners — Suzanne and Josh Brandsen of Selected & Collected — with a perfectly preserved home to call their own. The couple has always had an eye for retro, but it wasn’t until they bought the home from Cora that they really let their love of vintage flourish. The ranch-style house is filled with some of their favorite pieces, as well as overflow from their online store.

Seven years ago, when Suzanne and Josh moved into the home, they weren’t exactly sure what influences they should turn to when styling. While some decorators like to play against a home’s architecture, the couple decided to let the mid-century touches influence the furniture and accessories they chose for each room. The outside of the home was just as important to Suzanne and Josh as the inside. The two love spending time in the garden, and they even started a raspberry patch with shoots from Suzanne’s grandpa’s batch. This love of plants and greenery can be seen inside the home as well; hanging plants and potted pretties are abundant throughout. While they love the vintage theme of the space, their goal is for their home to be ever-evolving. Since the two have a passion for selling vintage and mid-century furniture, the look of each room is in flux. “Our friends and family laugh at us because there is always something new or different when they come over,” Suzanne says. “We like change, and there are few pieces of furniture in our house that we won’t sell when something better comes along.”

I totally relate to Suzanne and Josh’s desire to always keep their home’s style “on the move” with new pieces here and there. In a time when various decor options are more accessible than ever, I rarely keep my home’s look stagnant for too long. So take a peek at this gorgeous home as soon as you can, because it may be your only chance to see it as it stands now. While some items have made a mark on Suzanne and Josh’s heart, it sounds like this house’s look is fleeting, making this peek that much more special. Enjoy! —Garrett

Photography by Suzanne Brandsen

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This Sneak Peek is brought to you by Rove Concepts – offering high quality, affordable furniture and home décor that pays homage to iconic classics of the past. See their full range of mid-century style pieces here.

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The Living Room: Suzanne and Josh's home is full of mid-century touches. Since their home was built in the 50s, they let that era influence the decor they chose. The owner was 100 when she moved out and had impeccably maintained the home's vintage look, setting the couple up with this perfectly-retro backdrop.
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The mantel's accessories are ever-changing, but plants are always a staple when Suzanne gets the itch to mix things up. Print by She Reads Truth. The wall plate is vintage.
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The living room's walls are painted in Behr "Silver Tradition," and "White 1852." The couple's gemstones come from The Tucson Gem Show.
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Since Suzanne played piano when she was a little girl, she always feels more at home with the instrument nearby. Luckily the couple found this piece already painted white. All they had to do was a few paint touch-ups, as well as add a new bottom panel. Rocking chair by Franco Albini.
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"The brass bar across the windows that we hang plants from was a handrail in the stairway of the Fox building in downtown Grand Rapids where my Dad's jewelry studio used to be." The credenza is filled with games for the nearby nieces and nephews. When they were designing the space, Suzanne and Josh wanted to make sure that it was a friendly and inviting place for the little ones to visit.
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Suzanne bought this peacock wall art to resell in her shop, but fell in love so it stuck around. "The teal chairs were an estate sale find. Josh aggressively sat in one and called me in from a different room of the house so no one could buy them out from under us."
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This Kindel sofa's yellow hue is both contemporary and retro at the same time when paired with new pillows and throws.
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The Dining Room: "The goblets on the wall here are my grandma's," Suzanne says. "She kept them in her window, and the way the light shone through them was so magical." Josh talked Suzanne into the dining table when she was fearful that the 70s Milo Baughman original was too small for their space. It ended up fitting just perfectly. A $10 bar cart, vintage Herman Miller chairs and a rotating light fixture round out the room. Clock by Herman Miller.
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The Kitchen: "[It's] small, but it has everything we need. It gets great light and is always bright and sunny. There is always a collection of little pots on the windowsill. I love watching things grow! The canisters are vintage Pyrex, and I use them for ev-ery-thing!" Suzanne gushes.
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"We chose the hanging pot rack because of our lack of cupboard storage. We try to use every bit of space we have in the kitchen." The red dutch oven by Martha Stewart is so bold. I adore the mixture of blues and reds in the couple's kitchen.
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The Master Bedroom: Suzanne bought Josh this Danish bed last summer for his birthday. Bringing the outdoors in was important to the couple, so plants - hanging or otherwise - are predominantly featured throughout the space. Suzanne's mom made the throw pillows and the pink blanket is from P.S. I Adore You.
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"My favorite [piece of art] here is the butterfly diorama. An unusual way to bring the outside in, and a beautiful work of art," Suzanne says. The rest of the gallery wall is a mix of vintage and new pieces the couple has curated over the years.
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A pink master bedroom might not be what every man has in mind for his home, but Josh confidently let Suzanne take the reigns after months of her collecting pictures of pink interiors. The two finally landed on Behr's "Botticelli Angel" and went for it.
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The Home Office: The couple paid just $10 for this vintage wall photography and, "can hardly ever imagine parting with it." This room is totally outfitted in vintage decor.
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"The framed Otomi art piece is so pretty in person; another item I bought from an antique mall to sell, then fell in love with," explains Suzanne.
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The Spare Bedroom: "Our house is so short on closet space, so I keep my clothes in the closet of our spare room," Suzanne says. "It's my dressing room, in a way!" The credenza was inherited from a family member.
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"I found the white planter at an antique mall back when I had a collection of animal planters. It was a dark brown, and I never used it. So I painted it white and fell back in love! The fern chart on the wall came from a local high school when they were clearing out old storage space. We love science charts..." Suzanne and Josh explain.
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The Back Porch: The family spends almost all of their free time on the porch in the warmer months, as it offers a space to unwind with plants and delicately curated 50s finds.
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"This Eames table is an original and we went to the owner's home three times to convince them to sell [it] to us." The rug is also vintage.
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This Sneak Peek is brought to you by Rove Concepts – offering high quality, affordable furniture and home décor that pays homage to iconic classics of the past. See their full range of mid-century style pieces here.

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Comments

  • What a sweet story on how they ended up in the house. They did a fantastic job on preserving the original feel of the home – every room looks just right.

  • Ooooooh!!! What a lovely home the decor is P E R F E C T ! I’ve become very fond of ranch houses, I like the single floor layout and open feel many of them have. Thanks for sharing your home w/us. p.s. – Nice stack of Nancy Drew (?) books!

  • What a lovely home (+ so fun that it’s in my city too)! My mom actually has the same light fixture that’s above their dining table + we used to have those Pyrex canisters growing up. So fun to see those things in another home. Very beautifully decorated.

  • Thank you everyone! We’ve never done anything like this before and it was an honor to be featured here. :)

    I’m always posting more random vintage finds/shots around the house at “suzannebrandsen” on instagram if you’re interested!

  • Love the house! So fun and comfortable.

    Does anyone know what plant is in the pink planter on the mantle? It’s in other spots throughout the house too and I can’t figure out what it is but I love it!

    • rachel

      i’ve been looking all morning and i think it’s crassula muscosa, or “toy cyprus”.

      the larger one to the left is Euphorbia trigona.

      i’m still going to keep looking ;)

      grace

  • This story is really sweet and makes the heart happy. I love how they incorporated vintage designs with modern vintage pieces. They work really well together in the space. It will be great to be able to see all the new pieces they incorporate as they come in.

  • I love all the plants, and I’ve slowly been trying to add more to my home. I would be interested to hear about handling water around them–especially the hanging plants. Do they have drainage holes? If so, do they drip on rugs or furniture? If they don’t, how do you keep from drowning them? The brass rail by the window is lovely!

  • Hi – Love the way you styled your home… it is welcoming and bright! We have a similar fireplace but the stone is darker… we don’t really want to paint it white. From the photos, it looks like you added a treatment to the brick. If so, what did you use? It looks great!

  • That vintage photograph is Spirit Island on Maligne Lake in Jasper National Park in the Canadian Rockies! I recommend seeing it in person!

  • Thanks everyone!
    Rachel- Sorry, I’m no help. Its was not labeled when I bought it but I agree with Grace on the “crassula muscosa”.
    Aidel.k- Most of the plants have a removeable pot inside the outer pot for drainage. Sometimes I prop the smaller inner pot up with an old yogurt container or something so they’re the right height. As long as it isn’t visible! :) For the few that don’t have drainage, I try not to water them very much.
    Jocelyne- We haven’t changed the fireplace since we’ve been here but it does seem to have a whitewash treatment of some sort, just on the very outside surfaces of the brick. I have gone through stages of wanting to paint it or further whitewash it, but as of now no plans to change. These bricks were a pretty light color to begin with. I hope that helps!
    Carla- THANK YOU! We’ve always wondered, and had honed in on the Canadian Rockies somewhat but not the specific location. So. Many. Discussions.

  • Grace-

    I think you are right! Thanks so much. Now I have to make a stop at my nursery where I will probably get myself in a little trouble and buy too many plants!

  • Well now, this is just delightful! When can I see it in person? My favorite is the white fur piano bench cover. It just makes you want to sit and enjoy.

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