My House!

News alert!  News alert!  Kay, maybe that’s a bit dramatic.  Interesting-ish fact announcement!  Interesting-ish fact announcement!

If you’ve been sitting at home upset, fretting, weeping uncontrollably because you couldn’t see my house in Style at Home  … fret no more.   The stylish folks at Style at Home Magazine have released the article that features my  semi-stylish house on-line.
My feature is the “One-Month Makeover – Century Cottage Goes Glam”.  ‘Cause I made over my house in a month.   Cause I’m weird.

You don’t get the whole written article.  You only get part of the writing but alllll of the pictures.  But let’s face it, how many people actually read decorating magazines?  You look at decorating magazines and read your horoscope.  Duh.   Unless you’re me.   I actually read decorating magazines.  Again, that’s that aforementioned “weirdness” popping up.

Now before I give you the link … before I invite you into my house … there are a few rules.

1.  Please wipe your feet.

2.  Please don’t try to pet the cat.  She’s surprisingly aggressive for a spoiled Siamese who was potty trained too early.

3.  Please don’t mention my kitchen floor.  I hate my kitchen floor.  The kitchen floor doesn’t exist.  Got it?

O.K.  having said that, I’d like to welcome you all to my home!  Come on in and please … stay a while.    After you look at my house in Style at Home , come  back to read some insider information about every photo!   (Scroll down after you’ve seen the pictures)

Click here … to see my house in Style at Home on-line, then come back for some stories!


The stuff you didn’t get to hear about in the magazine …

Photo #1 – Me in my foyer.  I’m laughing hysterically (which results in chipmunk cheeks) at something my niece said.  It’s an inside joke which you won’t think is funny at all but it involves  pee pee.  Classy, eh? And grown up!


Photo #2 – My Foyer.  It took me months and MONTHS to get my bookcases looking good.  If your bookcases don’t look this good, don’t give up.  Just keep playing with them until they feel right.  Leaning beside my chair is one of my most prized possessions. A set list I got signed at a Ramones concert.


Photo #3 – Margaret. Margaret is the massive oil painting in my dining room. When my father died of lung cancer 10 years ago, my mother gave my sisters and I some money. Her only stipulation was that we spend the money on a piece of art. I bought Margaret. I will never, ever get rid of Margaret.


Photo #4 – My dining room. Lord I love my dining room. You may notice, the star of the show is my Dollar Store Garbage Bag Table runner.   Again with the classy.


Photo #5 – My kitchen. Kay, um … here’s a real confession. That kitchen table? The tulip table? I don’t own it. It ain’t mine. My niece owns it. I have been looking and looking at flea markets and on Kijiji for the same one for AGESSSSSS but could never find one. Since it’s the one I WANT in my kitchen, and will eventually be the one I HAVE in my kitchen, I figured a little borrowing would do just fine. Do you feel cheated? Suck it. As far as I’m concerned THAT’S MY TABLE. It’s just a matter of finding it for the right price and buying it. Or stealing it. Whichever seems easier. Oh! And that white brick wall was natural brick until about 3 days before the crew arrived to photograph my house. I highly recommend painting ugly brick walls.


Photo #6 – My Living Room.  The huge mirror? I got it at a garage sale for $7. I almost didn’t buy it because I don’t like to spend any more than $5 for a garage sale item. That end table? The chopping block looking one? It actually is a chopping block. I made it. And in a couple of weeks I’ll show you how to make one too.


Photo #7 – My fireplace.  The filigree vase on the left-hand side of the fireplace mantle was brought to my house by the prop stylist. I bought it as a memento of the event. It cost $89. The wooden bowl in the far upper left corner of the bookshelf is an antique camel milking bowl from Saudi Arabia!  Saudi Arabian antiques are kindda rare outside of Saudi Arabia what with people not being allowed to visit the country without an invitation by a resident.  My sister (who is an actual interior decorator … unlike me) spent last summer in Saudi Arabia decorating the house of a Saudi Arabian princess.  She brought me back the bowl.


Photo #8 – My boudoir.  I don’t own the 2 green pillows on the bed. One is patterned, the other one is a beautiful green velvet. The prop stylist brought them to add a little colour to my bed. I loved them so much I thought I’d ask how much they were to buy. The velvet was somewhere just over $400. I did not purchase the pillow. I am currently on the lookout for a green velvet pillow pricing in at just a titch under $400.


Photo #9 – My bathroom.  The bathroom is the only room in the house that isn’t painted white. It is a mixture of white and Benjamin Moore Bar Harbor Beige. When I first moved into the house the bathroom had a wood toilet seat. Blech. Double blech.


All photos by Donna Griffith by way of Style at Home.


Okey doke … don’t let the door hit you on the ass on the way out!   Thanks for comin’ by and please leave all hostess gifts by the door. Unless you have a white tulip table, in which case you can leave it in the kitchen.

You might also be interested in:

Style at Home Series Pt. I   –   “Oh Dear, I’m About to get Shot

Style at Home Series Pt. II –   “Getting My House Magazine Ready

Style at Home Series Pt. III –   “I’m Magazine Ready, I swear

Style at Home Series Pt. IV –   “The Art of Having Your House Photographed for a Magazine


  1. Heidi says:

    Hi Karen,
    Just recently discovered you and I am a big fan of your blog. Already made your dollar store mirror planters! I too love the good old dollar store, oh and they know me by name at Homesense! I searched but nothing came up, so I wanted to double check that I have not missed the “How to make a log end table” post. I see you said above, it was in the works. (um hint hint :)
    I turned a slight green looking at your house! Thanks for the inspiraton and ideas!

  2. Gal says:

    I love your house, really beautiful even without the added stylist details. Also great blog.

  3. sherry hart says:

    Mad talents my dear!!! Your home oozes style…..Audrey Hepburn meets Suzanne Kasler meets Thomas O’Brian….. ish. AND you are cute and funny. The Gods smiled on you.

  4. Angela N says:

    I just found your blog, via Bryn Alexander’s. Love it. I saw some velvet pillows at Pier 1 that might work. And for $15.96!! Just a tad less expensive then $400. ;-)

    • Karen says:

      Hi Angela! Thanks for the pillow info! Would you believe the day after the magazine shot at my house I ran out to Pier One to look at their pillows! I picked that one up and walked around the store for about a half an hour with it, but I couldn’t decide if I the green was quite right. I didn’t end up buying. And now … of course … I wish I had. Maybe I’ll go take another look! Thx. again for looking out for me (and my bedroom)! ~ karen

  5. LiveLikeYou says:

    You did a fantastic job. What an inviting beautiful, traditional yet super modern home. I want to live there!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks! I went to have a look at your blog and also your design website. Um. Wow. The Swedish house all white on white you featured today is STUNNING. And your design portfolio is shockingly beautiful. Great use of .. well … everything! ~ karen

  6. magali says:

    my friend has been telling me about your blog forever and this post has just made me a regular follower from now on! great house! i love your bookcase.
    I am redoing my kitchen right now and well… i have a white tulip table. oval however. my grandmother is giving me the one she use to have way back when. good luck with finding one!!

  7. Emily says:

    Karen – it looks wonderful! I love all of it, but I’m especially jealous of your beautiful coffee table. I’ve been on the hunt for one for about three years now. May I ask where yours is from?

    Thanks in advance.


  8. pam h says:

    dammit, CANADIAN. I can spell, despite all indications to the contrary.

  9. pam h says:

    How did i JUST DISCOVER YOU JUST NOW? probably because I am not Candaian. But I am now a devoted follower.

  10. Terri says:

    I am lusting after the bookshelves – particularly the one by the fireplace. Guess I need to find a drunken carpenter!

  11. jan says:

    I love your house and my house would be something like it if only I could persuade my husband to get rid of his rather unnecessary junk. I live in hope.

  12. Malinda says:

    Oh my god, I love the chopping block end table!!! I just found your site… are you going to be sharing how to make that soon? I’m looking for a challenge ; )

  13. Megan says:

    Love your home! I particularily love the bookcases in your foyer!

  14. I love, love, LOVE your house. Such a perfect combo of modern and antique. In fact it was love at first sight in Style at Home, can I move in? I kid, I kid.

    I’m so happy to have found your blog!
    : ) Christine

  15. Jenny says:

    Hi Karen! I’m ready for your chopping block post. Why you ask? I picked up some big sections of oak wood from a neighbor’s fallen tree a month ago and my husband wants me to get rid of it, since the wood’s been sitting outside for a month, untouched. I just need a project to convert a few of them into beautiful end tables. Can’t wait to see it!

  16. Your house is beautiful! I found you through Made by Girl and I’m happy I did.

    The big art work is absolutely stunning.

  17. coming to you from made by girl….and so glad i did! :) how exciting to have your home featured! and its…..awesome.

    the gold mirror. love. the bedroom…..i really admire your bookcase so thanks for the reality check that it DOES take awhile to achieve a good looking case :)

    p.s. i’m a fan of painted brick too :)

  18. Visual Vamp says:

    Hey babe, ,
    Don’t they have an Ikea where you live? They have a very inexpensive tulip table knock off there. Check online to see.
    Nice house – very mag worthy indeed. Love how natural feeling it is.
    xo xo

  19. Ana says:

    My heart aches for your house!! I think my favorite are is the foyer (I love foyers and bathrooms, if only houses could just be foyers and bathrooms),but that painting! GOR-geous.

    Karen, what is that column, standing at the far left corner of your living room? It looks like a white tree. What is it made of??

  20. You are hilarious! (Make that Hilarious with a capital H) And your home is lovely. It’s amazing what you accomplished in a short period.

  21. LindsB says:

    Love your home, it is beautiful and gives me hope for my own! Thanks for being the inspiration for my post today!

  22. Zina says:

    Oh thank goodness. But really? I wouldn’t say my sobbing and wailing was uncontrollable. I had it down to weepy dripping and, at intervals, whining quietly but bravely, holding up a pathetic paw every now and again.

    The Stories We Wouldn’t Have Heard are fab.

    And just as soon as I have my sewing machines back (prolly in a month or so), I will happily make your green velvet pillow for you, just so I can say I made a pillow for you. What size pillow do you want? :)

  23. Robbin says:


    I know where you can get green velvet pillows for under $400.00 — IKEA! Just bought two for my sofa at $12.99 for the cushion cover and 6 bucks for the pillow insert! For that price, you can get two!!!!

    • Karen says:

      Thanks Robbin! I’ll give it a shot. Now, do ya know where I can get a tulip table and chairs??? :)

      • b says:

        Hey Kare, Great site you have here… and I know where you can get a great tulip table and chairs…from that selfish niece of yours :).
        Hey niece give up the table already your loving aunt can only throw out so many hints.

      • Karen says:

        Thanks B! I’m workin’ on the niece. And Craigslist. Oop. That doesn’t sound quite right does it? I’m not “working” on Craigslist, I’m looking for the table on it. ~ karen

      • Shirly says:

        Hey Karen, if you haven’t found that perfect tulip table already (and if no one has lead you to this site yet), this tulip table version may be on the pricey side (about 700 buckaroos), but I’m sure it’ll serve it’s purpose well. If not, I hope your search continues!

  24. Diane says:

    I spend so much time on Facebook that I’m finding myself looking for the “ilike” button. hehehe

    Seriously though, it’s absolutely beautiful!

  25. Nina Bredell says:

    Just lovely !!!! Espcially your bedroom & bathroom…

    Love from Sweden

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *