Reader Design: Meredith's Simplified Space

It seems like the whole country is experiencing some crazy sunshine this week! But no place gets more sunshine than the location of today's reader design location: Denver, Colorado. Allegedly, this city gets a whopping 300 days of sunshine, and you can tell by the lightness and brightness of Meredith's home.

bLiving Room.jpg
When we bought this home, it was filled to the brim with bold paint colors, glossy finishes, and bright accent walls. My first goal was to lighten everything up and make the rooms feel more cohesive. We used the same light gray paint color (Silver Drop by Behr) in almost every room, and it’s done wonders for making our home feel light and bright and so much bigger! From there I tried to arrange furniture and decorate so our home feels welcoming and cozy but still simplified and clean.
— Meredith
cDining Room.JPG
My style and DIY skills have definitely evolved over the past 10 years of home-ownership. Our first house was an 80s ranch in Arkansas, where we learned to scrape popcorn ceilings, add recessed lighting, and paint lots and lots of wood trim. I started collecting mid-century modern furniture pieces there because they fit the style of the house, but over time, mid-century furnishings became part of our style, too. Now those same pieces seem to fit our very non-ranch second home in Colorado because they are a reflection of us.
gFamily Room.jpg
iFamily Room Stairs.JPG
jFamily Room from Above.JPG
Our family room is full of more favorite pieces. The credenza was a $40 Craigslist find that I spent hours sanding down to bare wood and refinishing. That thing will probably outlive me! The gold arc lamp was an estate sale find that took three adults to load into my car (with two carseats installed). And of course, our West Elm leather sofa is the most durable, comfortable thing ever. It was our only brand-new furniture purchase after moving to Colorado and it was worth every penny.
kMaster Bedroom.JPG
lMaster Bedroom2.JPG
One design element I will always be willing to splurge on is good lighting. In both of our homes, we replaced horrible wood-framed fluorescent lighting in the kitchens with recessed lights. We’ve also updated almost every single light fixture throughout our home. I don’t necessarily need something high-end if it’s a good design. I tend to prefer simple globe pendants and sconces, except for in our girls’ shared bedroom where I added the most girly floral chandelier ever!
oGirls Shared Bedroom.JPG
pGuest Room.jpg
Over the past year, my husband and I have strived to simplify the way we live. We’ve emptied out our unfinished basement, decluttered our kids’ toy collection and our closets, reduced the number of decor items out at any given time, and even put half our dishes and flatware into storage so our kitchen stays cleaner. Our home feels lighter and bigger and we spend much less time cleaning and tidying! I’d love to be a true minimalist, but I have to balance a love of adding interesting textures and pops of color, too. Lately I’ve learned that keeping the pieces you feel most passionate about and letting go of the rest is a pretty great recipe for a home you love.

Meredith, thank you so much for giving us a tour! Follow Meredith along on Instagram @welcometoheardmont for more!

McKenna Sig.jpg

Reader Design: Miranda's Welcoming Nest

Oh style mutts, how I've missed you! I'm writing from the comfort of my couch, coffee in hand, because jet lag is real, my friends. And we're back after a brief hiatus with a reader design home that makes coming home oh so special.

Miranda and her family of four have lived in their Charlotte, North Carolina for 13 years, and over that time, Miranda has made it a loving reflection of how she views style and family. They love it so much that they plan to simply add on to the space as they need to grow and stay here as long as they can. 

The warm, welcoming, and eclectic design you see today isn't how this home always looked. As Miranda explains: 

My style came to life a handful of years ago when I was home all day, every day with two kids under two. With baby gear, and toys, and a large dog, I felt like there was just no room to breathe. During nap times, I found myself scrutinizing the living spaces, and trying to figure out how to make the areas feel larger. Over time, I realized our giant Rooms-To-Go couches and random knick-knack decor were suffocating the life and charm out of our home.

And one day it dawned on me: this house was built in the 50s, when furniture was made on a much smaller scale. Why not look for pieces that fit our home, and are meaningful to us? That change in perspective really helped me see the potential in our home, and opened my eyes to being more intentional about creating meaningful spaces for gathering and conversation.

With that revelation in mind, Miranda set out to curate a home that meant something real to her. She and her husband reached out to family and were able to bring in some amazing pieces from their parents and grandparents. There are photos that capture Miranda's husband's grandmother napping on one of the club chairs after Easter brunch, with the grandfather clock quietly keeping time in the background, and Miranda's mom as an infant blowing out her birthday candles at the dining table. 


This home continues to evolve and develop as new influences come and go. For instance, when Miranda read Myquillin Smith's The Nesting Place two years ago, she focused on one of Smith's main design tenets: "it doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful." And, inherent to that principle, neither does it need to be expensive to be beautiful. 

That came to life in the bathroom, where Miranda actually made her own wallpaper with nothing but the wall and a Sharpie. Yes, those "I love yous" specially covering the wall were handwritten by Miranda. If only we all had hands that steady! 

The bedroom is simply beautiful - a relaxing place to lay your head at night after caring for your family. It's actually the newest addition to the home and replaced the original space which was small and dark. Miranda captured the airiness and brightness she was missing in the new space while still ensuring it "went" with the rest of the house. 

It captures her mindset perfectly. 

My approach to decorating is two-fold: 1) it doesn’t have to be expensive, just intentional. 2) it’s all about the people inside this home. Whether you live here and I see you every day, or you’re just visiting for the weekend or coming over to share a meal, you should always feel like there’s a place for you, and that you are welcomed, enjoyed, and loved.

Miranda, thank you for bringing us in to share your home with you today. It is a truly gorgeous space. Mutts, be sure to follow Miranda along on Instagram @thehousethatmercybuilt

See you all next week!