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Summer 2015 Home Tour


Welcome to my home tour from the summer of 2015!  We’ve worked on our home for almost nine years and it has been a true labor of love and DIY marathon.  We’ve painted, built, repaired, installed, sewed, upholstered, sanded, refinished, ripped out and remodeled just about every corner.

Our goal was to balance the function we needed for our busy family with our (mostly my) desire for a beautiful home.  I hope this home tour gives you some inspiration and encouragement to do the same in your home.

Let’s start at the front door…


Our house is a 1 1/2 story, 2300 sq foot, brick cape cod that was built in 1948.  It’s in a two stoplight town in the hills and orchards of south central Pennsylvania.  We’ve spent most our time fixing up the inside of our house, but we’ve been working on the outside of the house over the past year or so.   Painting the brick is still on my wish-list, but the garden beds, planters and window boxes are really coming along.


Holly bushes are planted along the front, under the windows, and lavender flanks the stairs.  It’s a little wild, but it smells so nice and I love how it softens the steps.


I got the concrete planters from my Opa’s house before it sold.  They’ve been sitting empty for a long time and I finally planted little boxwoods in them.


The window boxes are filled with a mix of white petunias, alyssum and a few purple flowers.  They are going nuts this year!  I took this picture only last week and they are already fuller and spilling over.  It’s amazing what a little dead-heading, fertilizer and watering can do!



You can see some of the work we did to the garden and driveway HERE.

When you walk through the front door, the living room is to the left and the dining room is through an archway to the right.  Straight ahead is an antique dental cabinet I bought from Urban Farmgirl at the Chapel Market a couple of years ago…


The original oak floors are currently raw.  We stripped them down this winter and I just haven’t wanted to finish them.  I sort of like them raw.

The living room is one of my favorite rooms.  It has the prettiest light and I love every stick of furniture in that space.  The walls are painted in Pearly White by Sherwin Williams.  The ceiling and trim are bright white, out of the can.  The jelly cupboard is in Miss Mustard Seed’s Milk Paint Linen, the rocking horse (from Restoration Hardware) is in Grain Sack over Shutter Gray and the hutch, a Craig’s List find, is a custom mix of French Enamel and Trophy.


The Gustavian-style sofa was a $100 Craig’s List find that I reupholstered in antique hemp sheets.  I painted the frame in MMSMP Grain Sack.  The blue & white factory cart was $130 at a local antique store and the chandelier was picked up for $60 at a junk shop.  The home didn’t have an overhead light in this room and installing one was going to be very messy (cutting through the plaster) and expensive, so I wired it to plug into the wall and made a super-long “scrunchy” cover for it out of antique linen.


The woven rug is from Joss & Main.  You can read how my jute & sisal rugs are holding up HERE.


The primitive hutch was another Craig’s List find, along with the pair of Bergere chairs.

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The Bergere chairs are upholstered in antique grain sacks supplemented with hemp sheets.  I bought a bolt of the checked fabric for $1.50/yard.


Of course, the hutch is filled with ironstone, my favorite thing to collect, and some blue & white transferware.


The marble-topped dresser was another $100 Craig’s List find.  It didn’t sell at Lucketts one year, so it was meant to be and I’m glad.  I painted it in MMSMP Grain Sack with Ironstone highlights on the drawer details.  The chair was a trade with one of my blog readers.  I reupholstered it in the same $1.50/yard checked fabric.

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Click HERE to see the full evolution of the living room over the nine years we’ve lived here.

There’s a small hallway through the living room that leads to Jeff’s office, a coat closet, 1/2 bath and upstairs.  You can see the boys like to decorate dad’s door.


The dining room is another space with beautiful light.  The dining table is made out of an old tongue & groove wood door and the base of a potting bench.  I purchased the wing chairs for $50 for the pair and reupholstered them in more of the checked fabric and grain sacks.  The French side chairs were a Craig’s List find.


The chandelier may be one of my best finds ever.  It was $4.00 at a yard sale.  Yep, that’s $4.00.  It was actually $5.00 and I negotiated it down!  I my defense, it was in a box, so I had no idea what I was buying, but when I saw the bag of crystals at the top, I knew it was worth the gamble.  (And I should’ve just paid five bucks for it.)


The corner cabinets were given to me by my aunt and I painted them in MMSMP Shutter Gray with Ironstone details and a Mora interior.  The chairs and table base are painted in Ironstone.

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The cow painting, Eulalie, is an original work by Cindy Austin.  You can buy a giclee print of Eulalie in Cindy’s etsy shop, HERE.  The painting is framed in a $11 clearance frame from Hobby Lobby that I gold leafed.

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I made the skirts for the dining chairs out of antique grain sacks and hemp.  Are you seeing a pattern, here?  If you’re interested in making your own, here’s a tutorial.

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On the wall opposite the buffet, I have a pair of Courier & Ives prints in custom mats (tutorial HERE) and gold leafed frames.  I added a little dark walnut stain to the frames to antique them a bit.  I still need to have glass cut for these, but it’s handy for pictures not having the glare!


I didn’t get a picture of it, but I also have a phonograph in the dining room.  I listen to it sometimes when I’m home alone, cleaning or rearranging.  One of my favorite memories from last Christmas was when we were sitting around the table and I played “White Christmas” by Bing Crosby on it.  There’s just something special about those scratchy records.

Through a small archway from the dining room is our home office, which used to be the 1940’s kitchen.  It had patchwork linoleum floors, a gas pipe sticking up out of the floor and a fridge sitting in front of the ironing board cabinet when we first moved in.  You can see the before and the transformation HERE.

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The channel-back chair was an honest-to-goodness-side-of-the-road-freebie.  I reuphosltered it in antique linen.  Jeff built the radiator cover and the built-ins in the space.


The walls are Gray Owl by Benjamin Moore.


This room is sort of our “landing zone”.  It’s where we hang our bags and backpacks, take off/put on shoes, etc.  The desk is a bit of a clutter magnet, but I try to stay on top of the papers.

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The home office leads into the new kitchen, which is in the modern addition to the home.  It was built about five years before we bought the house.  You can see the before and transformation HERE.  The full list of sources as well as the total cost can be found HERE.


The kitchen was an awesome space to begin with, but the finishes and colors weren’t my taste.  I painted just about everything…the walls, ceiling and all 53 cabinets.  Jeff and I also made the butcher block counters and the custom range hood.  My dad and I installed the marble backsplash, which was my first and most likely last tiling project!  The floor tile was from Home Depot and the hickory wood flooring was from Lumber Liquidators.


My mom bought the pot rack for me as a house-warming gift.  In all of the 8+ years we’ve lived here, that may be the one thing that has never moved!  And yes, those are actually my real, everyday pots and pans.  If you’re going to use things every day, they might as well be pretty!


The barstools are from Restoration Hardware.




We actually use the chalkboard for our grocery list.  We write what we need as we think of it, which is handy since it’s just two steps from the fridge and pantry, and then take a picture of it before heading to the store.



The cow head and wreath are from Decor Steals and the sign over the stove is from Copper & Tin.








The kitchen opens to the family room and obviously, these two rooms are where we spend the bulk of our time.  Once we cleared out the bouncy-seats and jump-a-roos, which used to be a in row under this window, we made room for a small eating area.


This is where we eat most meals, play games, color, work on homework, etc.




The walls of the kitchen and family room are painted in Glass Slipper by Benjamin Moore.  The Belgian linen curtains are from Barn & Willow.



The Brooklyn leather sofa from Pottery Barn is one of my splurges, but it’s where we all sit when lounging and watching TV, so it was totally worth it.  (See how I paid for it without eating into the family budget HERE.)  The rug is also from Pottery Barn.


I would love to replace that side door with a cool dutch door and the fans with pretty chandeliers, but there are just some things that will have to wait for our next house.



Our TV console is just an antique buffet.  We removed one of the drawers to accommodate some of the components.  We used to have a big gas fireplace where the TV is now, but we knocked it out.  It wasn’t functional or pretty and it really limited the furniture placement.  I love fireplaces, but this one needed to go.


We designed the wainscoting after a visit to a beautiful old inn in Charlottesville, VA.  This room needed some architectural interest and this was the ticket.


The wing chairs were given to me for free, since they weren’t purchased at a friend’s yard sale.  I recently made new slipcovers for them out of hemp sheets.  The French caned daybed was $150 off Craig’s List.  I upholstered in it free buffalo check my aunt gave me.




An antique woven trunk is topped with a cutting board to make it a functional and unique side table.  (That other cow painting is also by Cindy Austin.)


…as is “Gwendolyn“, the holstein cow.


She’s in a yard sale frame that I painted in MMSMP Grain Sack.




I made the family room pillows out of a mix of remnants, vintage fabric and some new.





The family room opens to the back deck, which recently got a vintage-style makeover.    You can see the full transformation HERE.

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The master bedroom is off of the family room.

The dresser was another Craig’s List acquisition, as was the French wardrobe, which is probably my most epic Craig’s List find ever





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The bed is from Restoration Hardware with bedding from Pine Cone Hill.  What most people assume is wallpaper, is actually fabric that’s been starched to the wall.  It’s “Artissimo” by P Kaufmann.


Our bathroom underwent an overhaul a couple of years ago and it made this small master bathroom feel a bit more luxurious.  Jeff built the shelving and rad covers and installed the shower cornice and trim.  We also put in a skylight, to bring in some much-needed natural light.


We had this tile professionally done and I opted to have these niches put in the shower wall, which I like so much more than any rack hanging from the shower head or stuck to the wall!


Back at the front of the house, there’s a small staircase that leads to the second floor.  It’s been a neglected space for years, but I recently painted it in Gray Owl, framed, matted (video tutorial HERE), and hung a family gallery wall and installed a Dash & Albert stair runner.



You can read about the stair runner installation HERE.


The upstairs bathroom is super small, but it has everything a full-bath really needs.  Since it’s a small space, I wanted to go bold with this wall mural from Anthropologie.  The light fixture is from Pottery Barn, the sink is original to the house.  The marble hex tile is from Amazon.  I painted the antique plaster mirror frame in a mix of MMSMP Boxwood and Lucketts Green.





The guest room is another favorite of mine.  It’s a departure from my usual blue and whites, with golds and reds added in.


The sconces are from Pottery Barn (discontinued), the bedding is Pine Cone Hill and the bed is from Restoration Hardware.  The checked curtains were made from more fabric my aunt gave me.  The walls are painted in Mascarpone by Sherwin Williams.






The beautiful (and unpainted) 1800’s wood dresser was another $100 Craig’s List find.  




The boy’s room is across the hall and is decorated in a loose vintage sports theme, mostly with pictures, racquets, and banners from my Opa’s attic.  The walls are painted in Hale Navy by Benjamin Moore.

Click HERE for resources and to see how the room has changed over the years.




And that’s about it!  I hope you enjoyed getting a tour of my house.  This was a quick flyover of my house, but if you’d like to learn more about my rooms and spaces, you click HERE to see the “my home” posts.

I also wrote a series sharing the full evolution of each room over the nine years we’ve lived here. This home was collected and worked on over time, which can be hard to see in a home tour that doesn’t show all of the behind-the-scenes work.  These posts show that…

Part 1 | Living Room

Part 2 | Dining Room

Part 3 | Home Office

Part 4 | Kitchen

Part 5 | Family Room

Part 6 | Master Bedroom

Part 7 | the three bathrooms

Part 8 | the guest room

Part 9 | the boy’s room

If you love my style and would like inspiration and encouragement to land right in your inbox, subscribe to my e-mail newsletter and you’ll never miss a post…

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  1. I’m a little speechless Marion. Your home and photography is so beautiful and I know I need to come back several times to take it all in. Thank you for sharing your home on the bHome summer tour. I’ll be pinning and sharing for sure :)

  2. Heidi Ferguson says:

    Oh MMS!!! I”ve followed you for years and I’ve seen your house in bits and pieces. I love that you did a whole house tour! I honestly don’t have a favorite space or room. It’s all magnificent. Yes, that’s a fancy word for your house, but it’s just amazing. You have done such a beautiful job with everything. Thank for showing us that a truly beautiful home can be done on a “dime” and that everything doesn’t have to be top dollar or designer. Thank you as well for taking the time to tell us the details of paint colors, prices and where you purchased certain things. I know it took a while to compile. So thank you!!

  3. SPEECHLESS! More gorgeous and unique than any home I have seen in a magazine or ANYWHERE! thank you for sharing and love all of your work!!

  4. Cindy Jones says:

    When did you get the new (or old) bar stools? On 2/21/14 you posted about finally getting the last stool painted blue. Did I miss a post or you just checking to see if anyone notices?

  5. Sheree says:

    Lovely home. How did you cover your box springs? Is it a fitted sheet?

  6. marian says:

    In the guest bedroom, it’s a box spring cover by Pine Cone Hill, so it matches the coverlet. The box spring was black, so it really needed a cover with the white bedding.

  7. Absolutely gorgeous home! You have me re-thinking my entire décor scheme!! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!

  8. Wow, everything just looks so beautiful, Marian. Your home is so warm and welcoming. Enjoyed the tour.

  9. So pretty and restful. Love your color choices and linens! Looking forward to seeing your outdoor improvements!

  10. stacey says:

    Of course, it’s perfect! Spot on perfect!

  11. Marion, everything is gorgeous! I work a lot with outdoor spaces and the first thought I had when I saw your front entry was “get rid of the wrought iron and replace it with wood posts and rail painted white”. I think you would be surprized by how it will change the look and give it a more substantial feel without changing the overall atyle. You might not even need railings. Jeff could probably do it with some help in a day!! Anyway, just a thought. Love your blog.

  12. Cassandra E says:

    I’m not sure if my original comment came through, and I’m scrolling back through posts and comments. Your house is amazing. It is one of my most favorite of all, and I take a lot of cues from you. I don’t understand why there are so many comments critiquing your home? I’m sure there are things you’d like to change still. I’m sure it’s still a work in progress. All I can see today are the lovely things that you have put so much time and effort into. You have such a talent. Thank you for sharing your home, and all that goes into it.
    Cassandra E

  13. aww that was such a beautiful home tour! thanks so much for sharing!

  14. Rachel says:

    Love your home!
    I noticed the dog print you have hung….do you happen to have any info on it?

    My grandfathers uncle from Germany painted the exact painting….only huge….was trying to figure it all out 😉

  15. Your space is beautiful, I love the bright, simple, clean, vintage & neutral space you have created. Its so calm and relaxing and welcoming to anyone that comes in!

    Lauren Baxter | LB Designs

  16. What a fabulous home tour! Every photo is eye candy to me!!!! Thanks for sharing!

  17. Marion
    I simply adore your home. I am a lover of blue and white and the chairs………I think they are adorable and I want two!!!
    You use plates a lot, as do I, but I am surprised that you use the wire holders as they can damage plates, I use the sticky place disc’s which are fantastic they don’t damage the plate and are easy to remove if you want to you can find the here, but Im sure they are sold in the US too.


  18. I am completely in love with your home. Bought your phenomenal book and am completely loving your philosophy of making this home a wonderful sanctuary for my family – little by little. God bless you!!

  19. I’m new to your blog and facebook page. I work with a friend who has raved about you for some time. Your home is beautiful. I look forward to learning and doing more with our new home once we move to Gettysburg….maybe our paths will cross!

  20. Linda Wyngarden-Blue says:

    Wonderful house! Great job in every room! I love it!

  21. Leigh says:

    Breathtaking home… really. So warm and each detail is as beautiful as the next…

  22. Bonnie Broten says:

    Hello Marian ….My name is Bonnie Broten and I am a Field Editor for Meredith Publishing…BH&G etc. I think your home was in a photoshoot for them, and also thought you were selling your home. We are looking for a great home in the Gettysburg area….. already have one chosen but when we send the whole crew it is best economically to shoot more than one house in same area. So am wondering if you can help me. I live in Minneapolis so will be flying with the photographer and asst in late Sept. (dates not set yet).

    Let me know and thanks so much, Marian.

    Bonnie Broten
    Field Editor
    Meredith Publishing

  23. Iolosdad says:

    I need to be your apprentice I will work 24/7 the come back to the UK and become Mr Milk paint ! Haha

  24. Absolutely LOVED your home my favorite color combo is blue & white too

  25. I love your house! Can we just swap houses and you can start all over again? LOL

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