Interiorssneak peeks

A Garden Retreat Honoring Antiques and Treasures in Oysterville, WA

by Allison Burt-Tilden

Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge

With the onset of the economic crisis in 2009, veteran landscape designer and interior decorator Bradley Huson seized the opportunity to take some time off from working at his companies Madison Park Interiors and Bradley Huson Landscaping to realize his dream of a beach house that would allow him to escape city life in Seattle and work on a large garden. A native of Washington state, he found what he was looking for in Oysterville, WA, an enclave located on the tip of the Longbeach Peninsula that he enjoyed visiting as a child. Designated as a National Historical District, Oysterville’s charm comes largely from its coastal location, storied history and tirelessly maintained historical buildings. Given Oysterville’s historic status and the fact that there are few properties in the area, pickings were slim and Bradley bought the one and only house available at the time.

Originally built as two structures in 1870 by W. D. Taylor, a Loomis Stage Line driver, they were combined around 1900 to the single home standing now — which is known locally as the W. D. Taylor House. Later in the 1930s the home was bought by the Nelson family who set up an oyster smoking business in the backyard, which they ran into the 1950s (the space is now a beautiful hydrangea garden).

At 1,600 square feet with 2 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, living room, dining room, kitchen, laundry/mud room and garage, the current home is the perfect size for Bradley, his partner Dan, their two dogs, and the occasional dinner party. But it took years of work to bring the property up to snuff. After buying the home, Bradley and his then 73-year-old mother drove down from Seattle with a truck full of furniture and spent their first day ripping out carpet and cleaning. Later in the renovation they tore false ceilings out of many rooms and painted over dark orange and mustard yellow walls. Further work involved re-wiring the electrical, re-doing the fireplace and overhauling the kitchen and bathrooms. Overall, Bradley says his goal was not to have a home that looked decorated but rather “junky,” which he says with a wink. Whatever he wants to call it, it’s a feast for the eyes with color, texture, antiques and pieces that tell a unique story. —Allison

Photography by Mikola Accuardi

Image above: The library has wall-to-wall metal shelving which was made by Bradley’s partner, Dan. It houses some of their favorite paintings as well as collections of special treasures that have either been found or gifted to them.

Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The garden is Bradley's pride and joy and he maintains spaces in both the front (seen here) and back of the house. He built the garage last year and utilized a covered walkway to connect it to the house, topping it with a cupola for fun. Says Bradley, "I'm constantly on the lookout for architectural hardware. All of the doors and windows were salvaged."
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The entry hall does double duty as a library and features a 17th-century burled elm root table Bradley bought at auction. The beautiful eastern morning light is a perfect spot for potted flowers.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
Bradley grew up playing the piano and was delighted to find this one, which is from the 1939 Worlds Fair, at an auction. It was previously owned by Laurance Rockefeller and was in his NYC townhouse. The juniper topiary is vintage and was found in a sake shop in Japan.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The sun room looks out onto the garden and is the perfect place to read a book or take an afternoon nap. The wicker chaise and brass pendant lamp are both from the 1960s.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
This 17th-century chair is covered in an 18th-century Flemish tapestry. It's quite beat-up so Bradley keeps a bag of embroidery floss nearby to overcast it as needed. "It's a great project for days that the weather doesn't allow me to be in the garden," he says.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
Bradley keeps a lot of garden design books on the sun room shelves for inspiration. He also loves collecting pods and dried flowers from the garden for seasonally rotating decor. The allium shubertii, also known as a Persian Onion, is one of his favorites for this purpose.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
A view of the living room with spring furnishings. The dried hydrangeas are in an old Pyrex umbrella stand that makes for a great vase.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
Bradley loves to relax and enjoy some snuggle time with his pups, Malcolm and Wayne.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The dining room walls have been covered with French army blankets from the Army surplus store in Seattle. Bradley's grandparents collected 18th-century Chinese export porcelain and he began collecting it as well after inheriting a few pieces from them and loves how they pop against the dark wall coverings.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The dining room, which is open to the library, features a lacquered table and metal base made by Bradley's partner Dan, who also made all of the metal shelving as well as the fireplace surround.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The four-poster bed features colorful curtains which were made using tapestry fabric from Old World Weavers. They can be closed to provide complete darkness, which is great for sleeping in. "It's an amazingly comfortable bed!" Bradley notes.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
This custom chair came out of San Francisco in the 1960s and has since been covered in a Larson wool. Bradley's partner Dan gave him the adorable stuffed bear for Christmas.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
Bradley chose this bird and butterfly patterned wallpaper by Schumacher because it brightens up this upstairs hallway space and brings him joy.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The master bathroom, which used to feature both burnt orange and mustard yellow walls, is now covered with faux boise Nobilis wallpaper. The wallpaper and shell sconce both mirror the abundant nature found right outside.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The shell sconces are French papier mâché and are by Serge Roche. The french doors lead to a private bathing patio that's hedged with boxwood, providing a lovely respite and view come summer.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The renovated kitchen features an antique Victorian sink and sideboard with soapstone counters. The window provides a stunning view of Willapa Bay, the shore of which begins just down the road.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The galley-style kitchen has a globe lighting fixture from the 1970s. Dan and Bradley love cooking in this room together despite the kitchen's diminutive size; they credit the bright light for providing a buoyant mood.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The kitchen's back door leads to the garage via a breezeway and lets in extra light, which is appreciated on the many overcast days seen in Oysterville.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
Bradley counts this embroidered wall hanging, gifted to him by a dear friend and neighbor, as one of his most cherished gifts. He hung it above the stove and thinks it sums up perfectly what he loves best about his getaway home at the beach.
Bradley Huson Sneak Peek tour on Design*Sponge
The mudroom is outfitted with a vintage Fontana Arte mirror from JF Chen in LA. The sink is iron stone and was salvaged from an old house on Capitol Hill in Seattle. Adding some family history to the space is a taxidermy deer which was shot by Bradley's grandmother in her front yard in 1946.

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  • Oh my, so lovely and homey without feeling overly designed. My favorite homes are those that people carefully curate over the years <3 Also, more gardens!

  • I agree with other posters. This home is beautiful and doesn’t feel designed or decorated. Home sweet home.

  • Wow. Almost nothing here has been Instagrammed to death (just the antlers). Very personal and unique.
    Also, it’s maximalist without feeling overbearing. I will examine this more to try to figure out how he succeeded. I saw a different place earlier today, smaller and definitely not cluttered, but still it was just too much. Here, it works, despite a lot more stuff. Many lessons herein.

  • so so lovely (and obviously loved). I wish we could have a closer look at the gardens, the front is dreamy!

  • Wow! This home is so dreamy! I agree with Taste of France – “maximalist without being overbearing.”

  • This was so lovely. It’s creative and well-designed without being overly precious. The only thing I could ask for would be more exterior shots because Oysterville is breathtaking. Walking around spying on the beautifully maintained houses, looking at the water, eating oysters and drinking wine makes for some serious fantasy life musings. If you’re ever in SW Washington, don’t miss it.

  • This makes me wish even more than usual that I could convince my husband to like layered rugs!

  • Holy cats, this is amazing. And you’re telling me this is their vacation home??!! I wonder what their regular home looks like!

  • This is a lovely fresh home compared to all the minimalist/white rooms. Thanks for sharing. I have another thought – quite often you feature homes lucky enough to have lots of natural light. Would you ever cover interiors to do with lighting, and photographing how rooms look at night? Thanks –

  • No words can relay how much I adore every aspect of this home. I could live there in a heart beat and never leave!

  • LOVE!!!! and…that is my rattan chair and ottoman!! ( I have the dining set, 2 chairs and ottoman….purchased in 1976!)

  • I would LOVE to learn more about those gorgeous metal shelves created by Bradley’s partner. They’re the perfect balance of function and aesthetic, I’m smitten and getting no leads on Google – please spill the beans! X

  • This is perfection! I love how everywhere your eye lands it’s just more fabulous than the last. So good.

  • I simply love this home. What a beauty! Hands down my favorite DS featured home. Congratulations Bradley and Dan.
    I want to redo my Victorian after this one!

  • I’m so curious about the floors that appear to be sisal or jute, but wall to wall, rather than rugs. Can anyone tell me more about them? My mother just bought a condo that won’t let her replace the carpets with wood floors, so we are busily exploring options that aren’t awful, design-wise. This house is terrific. I love seeing Oysterville houses-it’s so dreamy there.

  • Dear lord. I want this man have a cup of tea with me and then set about designing my home interiors! (If you’re reading this Bradley and Dan I am 100 percent serious; come help refurbish a shabby cabin in NH!) This is exactly how I want my house to look – only I have just one dog and know that were this my house there would be dog fur EVERYWHERE. So maybe we skip the blanket covered walls, is all! I love this home and it gives me hope that some day my scattered random treasures and possessions will obtain the eclectic and homey look of a true collector.

  • Yas yas yas! I love this home! Also YAS to not having to to hit a right button to shuffle through the post’s images and instead being able to just scroll down. I vastly prefer this post format, Design*Sponge!

  • I didn’t even know that I wanted a 17th century chair covered in an 18th-century Flemish tapestry or a wire fish sculpture until just now! I’d also take the kitchen sideboard, the rug in front of it, the metal shelves…. This house is just too good!

  • “Adding some family history to the space is a taxidermy deer which was shot by Bradley’s grandmother in her front yard in 1946.” might be the best sentence I’ve ever read. And I’m a vegetarian! :-) I am in love with the layers and the textures and the life in every one of these rooms! This might be one of my D*S favorites.

  • There are so many interesting books!!!! And the pic where the owner sit with his dogs and in the background we can see colored cat pillow is adorable!!!

  • This is the home that you want to spend all your free time in. It looks like the best kind of homey retreat! I grew up in Tacoma, WA. Somehow it feels very Northwest to me, but it’s hard to put my finger on it. Kudos!

  • Love the calm use of white or dark walls to showcase all the collected treasures. Bradley and Dan really know how to achieve an “undecorated” look that invites you in. I could be the cat on the chair in this wonderful retreat.

  • Elegant, interesting, beautiful, comfortable, personal. This is a wonderful, wonderful house.

  • This is a wonderful home. Elegant and comfortable. It has the best bookcase arrangements I’ve seen. I can imagine relaxing here with those gorgeous dogs and the books.