A Sunny Space in the Sunshine State

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The best spot in the house is by the bay windows! (Image credit: James Hill)

Name: Stella, her partner and pet
Location: Gainesville, Florida
The basics: Two years, rented | 1,200 square feet

Stella’s home is full of bright yellows, rich pinks and purples and some lovely plants soaking up all of that Florida sunshine!

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: We try to fit in unique details from all around the world. My boyfriend and I love our house, as well as our cat Sal Pacino who rules over the both of us. We both have eclectic, playful tastes when it comes to home design and there are little pockets of that everywhere around the house. Our mantel are filled with tokens from special moments or travels. We have a little section in our living room that displays art and toys we’ve collected from Comic Con and that we’ve had since we were young.

I’ve always loved lots of color in the house. I was raised in Cameroon and my father is from Tanzania, so I started to add color in my room through bright African prints or pieces of Maasai jewelry. From there it grew into more textiles and textures. I have textiles from Argentina, Morocco, and India which all seem to blend perfectly together. I also have gotten really into challenging myself to have more plants around the house, so I’ve made the bay windows a focus of our living room since the plants love it there and we get great light in the room.

What is your favorite room and why? My favorite room is our living room. I spent a lot of time experimenting with the space and I just kept getting drawn closer and closer to the windows. I grew up close to the equator and I’m a Florida girl so I love to be next to the sun. We spend hours there unwinding after work or hanging out on the weekends playing games or getting into creative activities, listening to records, etc. We’ve actually abandoned our dining room because we love eating in here as well.

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? The last thing I bought for the house was a very plain, light colored jute rug to place underneath the very colorful boucherouite from Morocco. It also gives it a better grip and padding to the boucherouite and balances out our living room a little more.

Which fictional character would be most at home in your place? I would like to think that if Issa Rae’s character from Insecure came into my home she would love it, make herself at home on the couch, ask me where the snacks are so we could some get into some real talk.

Stella’s words of advice: Find out what brings you joy at a micro level and expand on that! Then figure out a system and a balance for it. Our love for toys and fun art translated into how the house was decorated overall. We balanced that out with simple furniture pieces that didn’t overcrowd the room, so that we could let all the other little things shine. It’s a great feeling to be in a cocoon of what you love and what brings you happiness.

Thanks, Stella !

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