Home Sweet Home: Kari
Welcome to Kari's home sweet home!
Kari's the creator of Spring Chick Designs, and is a fellow Virginian (who still lives there, unlike me). If you've read her blog, you've perhaps seen that her crafting studio has been featured on both Ikea Hacker and Apartment Therapy. I've been hearing about Kari's talent, humor, and kindness for years from my older sister Katie, who is her friend in real life, so it's been great to follow her via her blog. She is amazing.
Peeking into her house, Kari's surrounded her family with things that have history and sentiment. Exactly the type of home you want to be in. (Plus, I bet it always smells good, like hot freshly baked warm things - Kari makes very yummy treats. Be sure to check out her bread recipe).
Dining Room: "...I had an idea to make a gallery of original portraits in my dining room. I started with some family portraits (the matching couple are my grandparents, drawn by my cousin) and have collected others from various sources including eBay, etsy, and local art students. All four walls are now covered with interesting faces."
Kitchen:"Our kitchen table was my husbands' growing up. It’s pretty indestructible. My kids love the barstools because the tops swivel. The furniture piece was used for display at a boutique that was going out of business. I asked them if they were getting rid of their fixtures and they sold it to me for a steal. I keep fresh herbs in pots inside in the winter and move them outside in the summer (that’s my rosemary tree in the picture)."
Living Room:"...We decided to place our piano in our living room so that we’d get in there and use a room that some people just have ‘for show.’ The kids are constantly practicing in there and it’s also the preferred room for block building! The piano has been passed down through my family for 5 generations – not sure how I lucked out to get it. The iron piece on the wall is from an antique auction, I think it’s an old steeple. My neighbor was throwing away the ottoman, so I grabbed it and made a slip cover for it."
"...This room is very hodge podge right now (new furniture is on order – white slipcovers!). This is where we spend most our time. Coffee table is Katie’s [*side note - Katie is my older sister & friend of Kari's] old one (I bartered my sewing labor for it!) The marble top side table I scored at an antique store for half price. The mirror is antique. The curtains are Ikea, they were a quick fix for privacy, but they’re kind of growing on me. My husband made the huge sign. We copied an antique sign we saw that was selling for a fortune. We were able to get the Denton library to send us information on the Caroline Sales Co. that is advertised, that operated in the 1940s. Some people love the sign; some people think it’s really ugly." [*Kari - I love the sign.]
(For more pictures of Kari's studio see the links at the top of the post from Apartment Therapy & Ikea Hacker. Well worth seeing - Kari is so resourceful.)
Her five year old's room:"...The dresser was a hand-me-down that I repainted. The quilt on the wall was made by my mom. I found the baby scale on the dresser in my grandparent’s attic (it was used to weigh my mom and her siblings). I found the play metal baby crib at a flea market. The doll dress was made by my mother-in-law."
Her ten year old's room: Bedding from Ikea, Kari made the pillow and doll (doll from Wee Wonderfuls pattern), her daughter made the S plaque and cute paper chain.
Basement: "...I can’t believe I’m showing you my unfinished basement, but it is the greatest place for the kids to play. I don’t care if it becomes a total mess, and there’s nothing much they can hurt. Someone gave me the best advice to paint my concrete basement floors before we moved in. It eliminates the dust and makes it so much brighter. All of this junky furniture was headed for the dump, but at the last minute I changed my mind and put it in the basement. The dresser actually works great for storing puzzles, games, and art supplies. The teacher’s desk and chalkboard inspire hours of playing ‘school.’" [Another side note: The one thing I hate about California is the lack of basements! This might be my favorite picture of all -]
I asked Kari to share a parting housekeeping tip. She says this, which I love: "...if something’s not working for you, change it. In my last house I was constantly frustrated with things about the house, but just lived with it for 7 years. In this house, if I see that something could be improved I just change it! For example, I found myself taking my mixer and baking ingredients in and out of the cupboard so frequently I decided to put them in pretty canisters and just keep them out. When my kids’ coats kept falling off hangers, I took out the closet rods and put up hooks instead. I read a book once that said every house has “hot spots” where stuff collects. If you have a spot where you dump your mail, put a pretty tray there to hold it, and then it looks better and feels more purposeful, right? Make your house work for the way you really live – that’s my new motto."
Thank you Kari, for sharing your lovely home with us!