When it rains it pours. I received two invitations to do a house tour: first from Naturally, Danny Seo (you can see the story in the Summer 2017 issue) and the second from the San Francisco Chronicle (you can see the story here
). The shoots ended up being back to back - exactly one day after the other.
Having your home photographed for large publications concentrates the mind wonderfully. Suddenly I was looking at my dear familiar spaces with another set of eyes.
My house is an old duck-hunting cabin built over the water, and I did a lot of the carpentry myself, using driftwood I collected along the breakwater. It is full of curiosities, so there was plenty to collect, organize and edit, and plenty to recycle! That's the beauty of foraging: nothing matches but it all came together in the same spirit, so I can let it go just as gently.
I never know what I will find on my forays - giant kelp, an old crab net, a piece of timber worn into lace by the sea. In garage sales I look for old tools and handmade items, boxes, maps - solid, useful, nostalgic things.
Above is the entryway table, made from slabs of cypress kindly given by a customer. I use old galvanised bins as wastepaper baskets and storage - this one came from the side of the freeway. My orienteering compass hangs at the ready.
The hats all get used! The rope-trimmed table was the top of a wine cask, on driftwood legs. I slipcovered my sofas in white Orkney, Cushions Covers and cosy throws in soft colors from our collection make it one of the best spots in the house to watch the inlet, rain or shine.
The large central room is planked in dark wood, with skylights and a woodstove, and a long table for dinners and projects. The crab nets came with the house - and can you spot the hammock?
The smaller sitting area is intimate and bright, a place to stretch out and relax. I salvaged two huge mirrors from a demolition site to reflect the water and framed them with driftwood (my mother was brilliant with mirrors.)
Our back door opens right onto the deck. We can enjoy an indoor-outdoor lifestyle most of the year.
The bedrooms feature Rough Linen bedding, of course! One is all white, another in St Barts Aqua, to accent the driftwood headboard I put together years ago.
Both photographers captured the light and the scenes just beautifully. Each had their own style and method, and the two articles each had their own look and angle - very interesting to see how each interpreted my space.
A crab feast was the logical choice for the table on the dock. This is the best way to entertain - salads, fresh seafood, and crusty bread with butter. We toss the shells over our shoulders into the water, to nourish the next season of shellfish. Recycling at its best.
When the shoot was over, we all relaxed, sat back, and ate the props! Exactly what this house was made for.