Bridget & Jake's "Make It Your Own" Denver Homestead

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Name: Jake Pedziwiatr and Bridget Mahoney
Location: Whittier, Denver, CO
Size: 1,600 square feet
Years lived in: 1.5 years; owned

Around town, Bridget is know as one of Denver's best barbers. To her friends and Instagram followers she is known as the queen of power tools, master of weekend DIY projects, and just a plain bad-ass. When she's not working the scissors in the barber shop, you will either find her riding her 1978 Honda CB 500 through the hills with her man or behind safety glasses and a band saw, working on another home project. The best thing about this house tour is that it does not perfectly mirror a specific design style nor is it riddled with the latest home decor trends from Pinterest. This home simply represents its creative owners, Jake and Bridget.

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Readers be warned, this tour is not your average "see and replicate" house tour. It's something much better. This peek into Jake and Bridget's refreshingly offbeat home is meant to foster creativity and encourage one to make their home a place they love. Some will connect with their style much more than with the modern or vintage decor we see often here on Apartment Therapy, while others might turn up their noses to certain bold design decisions, such as the lacquered MDF flooring upstairs. Either way, this home is beautifully unique and original to its residents and let all critics and self-proclaimed design experts, be damned - your home should be your style and your taste. Over the years, the best advice I ever received in regards to decorating has been this: buy things that speak to you and you will always love your home. It's clear (and oh so refreshing to see) that this couple has done just that.

As a couple, these two are nothing short of inspiring and innovative, but Jake will gladly admit that Bridget has been appointed as the decorator in the house. A neutral paint palette, small pops of color, and a conscious mix of feminine and masculine elements make up Bridget's design aesthetic. The many rustic, antique pieces in their home (yes, including the skulls) are not hipster thrift store finds, but rather hand-me-downs from Bridget's Aunt and Grandmother. West Elm is clearly a big favorite for staple items and lighting. Many decor pieces were acquired on trips to Mexico and New York along with many visits to the local treasure that is the Brass Armadillo Antique Mall.

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Now let's talk about all those projects. "Everything we've done has been triggered by a picture that we were inspired by." Bridget says. "I would see a picture and think how can I get as close to that as possible and still stay within my budget. This kind of planning causes you to get really resourceful." First off, on the ground floor, they had the light hardwood floors sanded and stained dark. This was the only job they hired a professional for. Everything else they did themselves. One of their first projects was taking out the electric fireplace and big cheesy mantle installed by the previous owners, revealing the gorgeous late 1800's original brick fireplace hidden underneath. The rustic wood accent wall was created with old cedar fencing from Bridget's Mom's house.

The unique mantle also comes with a story. Bridget's sister was renovating her kitchen (guess the remodeling gene runs in the family) using antique tin tiles as a backsplash. Bridget begged her for the scraps, wrapped them around a long wooden beam, creating a one-of-a-kind decorative mantel with the perfect patina.

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The one renovation I think I love the most involves the upstairs flooring. First they ripped up the dingy carpet followed by a layer of old linoleum. Getting down to the raw MDF, they decided to leave the base layer uncovered (old stamps and all), polyurethane it, and let it shine. I love the grit and character this brings to the space.

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Of course, as is most often the case in any home occupied by a serial decorator, one room (or two) is stuck in limbo. The small room off the kitchen has and will probably continue to take on many lives. What was once an in-home hair salon for Bridget, is now a working laundry room/office space. And yes, the clothing line does get a good amount of use. The upstairs master bath is currently a construction zone, undergoing renovation, hence the lack of photos.

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Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Rustic,
 Modern, 
DIY,
 Country, 
Gray,
 Trill.

Inspiration: Trying 
to find
 the 
perfect
 balance 
between 
masculine 
and
 feminine.

Favorite Element: The 
collection
 of 
bones. 
They
 are
 beautiful 
to 
me. 
The
painted
 horse
 skull 
was
 my 
Grandma’s
 and
 she 
had 
it 
since 
I 
can 
remember. 
The 
other
 bones
 come 
from
 Jake’s 
fishing 
trips, 
Rocky 
Point 
beach 
in 
Mexico 
and 
lastly...some 
antique
 store
 finds.

Biggest Challenge: Leaving 
things 
alone. 
I 
always
 want 
to 
change 
things 
up. 
I
 get 
an
 idea 
in 
my 
head 
and 
I 
obsess 
until 
I 
do 
it. 
Sometimes 
I 
just 
need 
to 
know
 when 
things
 are 
okay 
the 
way 
they 
are. 
But
 where's 
the 
fun
 in
 that...right?

What Friends Say: My
 personal 
favorite 
one: 
“It’s 
like 
a 
magical 
museum 
in
here.”

‐
 Winter, 
a 
4 -year-
old. 
However,
 most 
often 
it 
is 
“Can
 you 
come 
help
 with 
my 
house ?”
 and 
the
 answer 
is 
Yes. 
I
 love 
doing 
projects!

Biggest Embarrassment: The 
back
yard
 and
 the
 master 
bathroom.
 I 
wouldn’t
 even
 let
 our 
lovely 
photographer 
take 
pictures 
of 
it...

Proudest DIY: Jake’s
 man 
closet.
 AKA 
his
 “Mariah
 Carey”
closet. 
I
 wanted 
it 
to 
look
 like 
a 
man’s 
only 
retail 
spot.
 (Inspiration 
for 
this 
room
 is 
Berkley 
Supply 
in
 Denver,
 CO.
 Look 
them 
up;
 it 
is 
an 
incredible 
place. ) 
Also, 
the 
concrete
countertops 
in 
the
 kitchen.
 I
 put 
Henry
 Feather 
Lite 
directly 
over
 granite 
tiles...
$70
 for 
new 
concrete
 countertops 
and
 backsplash.

Biggest Indulgence: Knick‐Knacks. 
I’m 
the 
knick‐knack 
queen.

Best Advice: Listen 
to
 gangster 
rap.
 Oh 
and..
Don’t
 be 
afraid
 to 
tackle 
projects
 yourself.
 With 
the 
help 
of 
the 
internet, 
you 
can 
find
 so 
many 
step-
by-step 
guides 
to
 walk
 you
 through 
any 
project. 

Think
 of
 something
 that
 you
 want, 
and
 research
 the
 DIY
 version 
of 
it. 
You
 don’t 
have
 to 
be 
crafty 
to 
DIY, 
you
 just 
have 
to 
know 
how 
to
 read 
directions.

Dream Sources: Apartmenttherapy.com 
(of
course!) 
Houzz.com,

Diynetwork.com, Google 
Images‐ - so 
many 
ideas 
just 
from
 scrolling 
through
pictures 
here.

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Resources of Note:

PAINT & COLORS

  • Magnetite 
by 
Glidden 
(
Kitchen 
cabinets 
and 
dining 
room
 wall)
  • 

Black 
Mica 
by 
Devoe 
Paint - 
Man 
Closet
  • Heather Belle 
by 
Devoe
 Paint
 - Kitchen

LIVING ROOM

  • Cowhide
 Rug - 
Tandy 
Leather 
Factory
  • 
Table
 - 
West
 Elm
  • Couches - 
West
 Elm
  • Wood
 Wall - 
Old 
cedar 
fence from mom's house
  • 
Mantle - Tin 
tiles found at The Brass Armadillo , wrapped around wood beam
  • TV Stand - Antique from aunt's house

DINING ROOM

  • 
Trunks - 
Brass
 Armadillo 
Antique 
Store
  • Table - Antique
 Store
  • 
Dining Chairs - 
Ikea
 (patio 
furniture 
section, 
then 
spray 
painted 
them) 

  • 
Light - 
West
 Elm
  • Rug - 
Mexico
  • Statement Wall Art - Fab.com, artist Reuben Ireland
  • Upholstered Vintage Chair - Passed down from Grandma

  • KITCHEN / LAUNDRY ROOM

    • 
Concrete Counters - 
Henry 
Feather
 Finish
 from
 Home
 Depot
 (Flooring
department)
    • Sink
 and 
Faucet
 - 
Home 
Depot
    • 
Cabinet 
Fixtures - Came
 with 
house 
but 
spray 
painted
 copper

    • Chalk Board 
Paint 
Wall - 
Guiry’s
 paint
 store

    • Wine
 Holder - 
DIY 
from
 mom
 and
 dad
    • Chicken
 Wire Door - DIY,
 Home 
Depot 
materials
    • Drafting Table - Found in alley, refurbished.
    • Table light - West Elm
    • Chair - Ikea (outdoor section)
    • Rug - Ikea
    • Dark side table - Family piece

    BEDROOM

    • Cowhide
 Rug - 
Tandy 
Leather
 Factory
    • Vanity - 
Antique passed 
down 
from 
mom
    • 
Candle 
Holders - 
Grandma’s
    • 
Bed 
Frame - 
Ikea
    • TV Stand - Old horse feeder from Aunt's house.
    • Bedside Hanging Light - West Elm
    • Side Chair - Guiry's

    BATHROOM

    • Shelf - 
Hardware 
store
    • 
Towel 
Hooks - 
World
 Market
    • 
Rugs - 
World 
Market
    • Mirror - gift
 from
 friend
    • 
Light 
Above Mirror - 
Hardware store

    JAKE'S CLOSET

    • American 
Flag - Ace 
Hardware
    • 
Mirror
 and 
light - 
Ikea 
Copper
 pipes 
and
 clips 
for 
jeans - 
Local 
hardware 
store

    BRIDGET'S CLOSET

    • Antique Vanity - Garage Sale, Refurbished.
    • 
Mirror, Frames, Garment Rack - Ikea

    GUEST BEDROOM

    • Knick‐Knacks over 
bed - 
World 
Market 
(during 
Halloween
 decoration 
time)
    • Mexican
 Blanket - 
Mexico
    • 
Side 
Table - 
Urban 
OutFitters

    OFFICE

    • Desk -Refurbished craigslist find
    • Office Chair - Thrift store find
    • Artwork - New York artist/tattoo artist, Mike Bellamy
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    Thank you Bridget and Jake for welcoming me and my camera into your wonderful home!

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    (Image credits: Kathryn Bacalis)

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