Name: Moorea Seal, her husband, and pup Lemon
Location: Seattle, Washington
Size: 1,400 square feet
Years lived in: 3 years, owned
When I reached out to Seattle boutique owner, social media extraordinaire, and author Moorea Seal about doing a home tour, she was in the middle of writing her third book, Make Yourself at Home. (The 52 Lists Project was her first hit journal, and 52 Lists for Happiness has been featured by the likes of Oprah.com.) As the title of her newest book may have tipped you off to, it's all about helping readers design a space that reflects their truest self, something she clearly knows a thing (or 52) about.
Known for her beautiful shop where you want to buy every.single.thing, Moorea's home feels like a home, not a store. I wanted to sit down, sink into the space, and look at everything. Southwestern design details as well as nods to her Cherokee heritage mingle with bohemian touches like the macramé plant hanger in the dining room. It's a mix of collected pieces with history and significance, along with newer items you might very well find in her shop.
And getting more of Moorea's style is even easier these days with a brand new Moorea Seal flagship store in downtown Seattle. Mark my words — on that next trip my arms will be full from all the things I'll want to buy!
Apartment Therapy Survey:
My Style: Southwestern/Rustic Bohemian
Inspiration: My family history and decorative objects that feel like outward expressions of my inner self. My great-grandfather was Cherokee, so his daughter, my grandmother Betty, kept many of his home decor objects, special pieces from his tribe and family, and sought to support Native American tribes by buying decorative objects for her home directly from Native artists. I have a few special pieces that were my grandmother's and great-grandfather's scattered around my home. And I, in turn, am especially inspired to support handmade makers and small businesses in decorating my home. My hometown, Nevada City, California, doesn't allow any chain stores inside city limits. It's filled with tons of amazing "ma and pa" shops. I own a storefront and an online retail site that stock over 160 handmade makers of clothing, jewelry, accessories and home décor. You'll find a few of the designers' works from my store in my home as well!
Favorite Element: I love that we have two French doors in our dining room, leading out to our big backyard. In the summertime, we open up the doors, pull our dining table out onto the porch, and invite friends over for cocktails under the stars and dance parties in the dining room!
Biggest Challenge: There is literally no wall space in our kitchen! We also don't have a linen closet or a separate pantry from our kitchen so we are strategic with how we hide our cleaning supplies, backpacking and camping gear, and anything else that needs to stay tucked away.
What Friends Say: My friends find our house comfortable, welcoming, cozy, and a great space for get-togethers. They love how open our kitchen is so people can easily chat and hangout together while we cook. Though it's a smaller house, it's really open, which makes it great for dinner parties, game nights, and hangouts.
Biggest Embarrassment: Our backyard is a wild jungle! It's luscious and beautiful during the springtime, but it can get messy and muddy in the winter. We haven't been able to do much to it yet.
Proudest DIY: My copper pipe blanket ladder, which is a DIY in my new book, Make Yourself at Home. My sneaky little golden retriever ate a hole in one of my family heirloom Native American-made rugs when she was a puppy, so being able to display it on the ladder is a good workaround for hiding the hole. (Sorry dad!)
Biggest Indulgence: Our Crosby Sofa from West Elm is by far our biggest indulgence, price-wise and size-wise! My husband is 6'6" so my goal was to get him a couch that he could take a nap on. The only problem was that when it arrived at our first apartment together, it was so deep and wide that it couldn't fit up our elevator or our stairs! So we had to wait another three months until we moved into a house to actually use it.
Best Advice: Invest in antiques and hunt Craigslist for treasures. When my husband and I first lived together, most of our furniture was from IKEA or was free from Craigslist. Over time, I've slowly saved money to invest in furniture that I will be happy with for at least ten years or more, rather than something that will wobble and fall apart in three. When you invest in antiques, you are investing in history and craftsmanship. And sometimes you can score incredible deals on antiques on Craigslist like our dining table, which is a large writing table from the 1800s. We got it for just $70! And the glass and brass cabinet in our dining room is from the 1970s and was just $50. The value of those antique pieces will only increase over time, which makes a larger investment worth it.
Dream Sources: Goodwill, Etsy, Craigslist, Ebay, Flea markets, Street fairs, Yard sales, Rummage sales, Estate sales, Everything But the House, Homestead Seattle, D+K Renewal, The Citizenry, West Elm, Cost Plus World Market, Ikea, Target, Amazon, Kitkitdizzi, 6th and Detroit, Carter & Rose
Extra Long Crosby Sofa – West Elm
Patterned Pillows – D+K Renewal
Coffee table/trunk – antique
Leather Butterfly Chair — The Citizenry
Rug – vintage
Mid-century buffet – West Elm West Elm
Andrew Bird Art — Frida Clements
Vintage Nevada City, CA poster — Etsy
Blanket Ladder – DIY from my book, Make Yourself At Home: Amazon
Decorative objects – mooreaseal.com
Dining table – antique
Brass Cabinet – vintage
Macramé plant hanger – vintage
Dining chairs – West Elm
Wall art – mooreaseal.com
Bed frame – ikea
Bedside tables – target + ikea
Large Vintage dresser — Homestead Seattle
Ornate Vintage Dresser – family antique
Bull Skull – family antique
Antlers – vintage
Hats – mooreaseal.com
Rustic shoe rack — Fermata Woodworks
Antler Poster — VOL.25