A Toy Store Owner’s Creatively Collected California Home

updated Apr 30, 2019

A Toy Store Owner’s Creatively Collected California Home

updated Apr 30, 2019
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Name: Caroline Rodrigues @shopmercimilo @rebelandquillobjects
Location: Mt. Washington, Los Angeles
Size: 2 bed, 2 bath
Years lived in: 1 year, renting

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Caroline and her husband, Jason, have designed their home in a way that strongly reflects their personality and aesthetic. After moving from New York City back to their home state of California, the couple took every opportunity to feel more connected to nature. They settled into the Mt. Washington neighborhood, which they consider their to be a hidden gem of Los Angeles.

Business owners and makers in their own right, Caroline and Jason continuously infuse their home with pieces made by artists they love and support. Caroline also has her own personal line called Rebel and Quill Objects, sold online and in their neighborhood at the Echo Park craft fair.

But their beautiful rental house doesn’t just hold their collection of hand-crafted home goods, it’s also where the couple works. They run their their online children’s toy shop, Shop Merci Milo, (inspired by their daughter Milo) out of this Mt. Washington home as well. With inspiration thoughtfully sprinkled on every wall, corner and shelf, their home beams with the energy and spirit of folks in the creative industry.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: I try to stay true to myself when styling my home. Your home is a reflection of who you are and your personality. I like to collect furniture especially from the early ’60s to the late ’70s. I also collect lots of art/objects from friends who are makers. It’s taken me years to really develop my own sense of style and I think I’m really comfortable now how I have set up my home.

Inspiration: I honestly love Japanese minimalism and textiles. I also find a lot of inspiration from my favorite artists such as Noguchi and Brancusi. One of my biggest inspirations for my home is the Russel Wright home and design studio in upstate New York. I would make a visit twice a year as it was one of my dream homes.

Favorite Element: My favorite is waking up to chirping birds! It really feels like you’re living inside a tree house. Living in NYC for so long, I had forgotten what it felt like to live closer to nature. I also love the concrete floors of our place. I did not think I would enjoy it but it is much easier to clean and keeps the place nice and cool in the summer.

Biggest Challenge: Our biggest challenge has always been space and the lack of it. I wish we had an extra room. We live and work in our space currently so it has been quite a challenge trying to find a balance. We have plans to relocate the business soon so that it can alleviate some stress from all the clutter it can make.

What Friends Say: “Your home is very you!”

Biggest Embarrassment: When we first opened our business, our home was filled with boxes and boxes on top of each other until it reached the ceiling! It was so embarrassing we had to move them into our bedroom. Now we have a space for all the product in a little studio outside of our home.

Proudest DIY: I hand made all the brass hooks and key hooks in our bedroom and front entrance in the living room. They are my creations that I am so proud of! You can actually purchase them on my other site Rebel & Quill.

Biggest Indulgence: The walnut credenza in the dining room was our biggest indulgence along with our new bed. We love them both so much and do not have any regrets. I tend to buy things knowing that I will have them for years to come. It’s like an initial investment but in the long run it’s well worth it.

Best Advice: Always decorate your space and home in a way that relates closely to your personality. I love stepping into someone else’s home and seeing how they decorate their space because it really shows that person’s character. You learn so much by just visiting someone else’s home and you automatically get a sense of who they are. Also I recommend buying furniture that you know will last for years, something solid and well made. Replacing furniture every year can be so costly; it’s better to just make that initial investment in the beginning and go with what you absolutely love.

Dream Sources: ABC Home in NYC, Heath Ceramics, Nalata Nalata NYC, Canoe in Portland West Coast Modern LA, Kaufman Mercantile, Lowell Shop and Gallery in Portland, Tortoise general store in Los Angeles, Good Liver in Los Angeles, Foundry home goods, West coast modern LA, Adaptations NY, RE POP Brooklyn, Post War Modern, Merci in Paris, Stella Dallas living in Brooklyn is a dream for textiles! Brimfield Antique Fair in MA, Rose Bowl Flea in Pasadena, Girl and the Abode


Brass Hooks and Key Hooks from Rebel & Quill
Rugs from Stella Dallas Living Brooklyn and Brimfield Antique Fair
Noguchi Lamps from Shop Noguchi
Cups and Mugs in Kitchen from various ceramic artists/shops: A Question of Eagles; Sandwich Shop; Small Spells; Shino Takeda; BKB Ceramics; Hasami Porcelain; Mugs from Gravel and Gold

Planters from various shops: Modernica; Wire plant stands Ferm Living

Ceramic Pots and Vases from: Heidi B. Anderson; TW workshop; Sprout Home Brooklyn; Kat & Roger; B. Zippy and Co.; Rami Kim

Brass Hooks and Key Hooks from Rebel & Quill
Rattan Wicker Stand- Rose Bowl Pasadena
Shelves — Ikea
Brass Brackets — Signature Hardware
Ceramic Wall Hanging— Knotwork

Couch — Vintage West Coast Modern LA
Coffee table — West Elm
Rug — Vintage (Turkey)
Rattan Chairs — Vintage Cyclic Furniture
Side Table — Vintage Cyclic Furniture
Credenza — Vintage REPOP Brooklyn
Bolga Basket — Vintage Brimfield Antique Fair
Shoe Basket — Target Target
Toy Storage — Steele canvas bins
Hallway wooden stand-Vintage — Brooklyn flea
Textile Artwork – Vintage — Brooklyn flea
Wooden Play Kitchen — Shop Merci Milo

Dining Room Chairs x 4- Vintage — Adaptions NY
Walnut Credenza — REPOP Brooklyn
Two Dining room end chairs — Antique – Luddite NY
Circle Shelf — Urban Outfitters
Side Bar Table — Target
Indigo dip dyed wall tassel hangings — WKND LA
Decor — Joinery NYC General Store Knotwork LA Girl and the Abode

Shelves — Ikea
Brass Brackets — Signature Hardware
Solari Bell — Arconsanti
Rug- Vintage — Brimeld Antique Market
Toaster — West Elm
Kettle — SMEG
Pots — DANSK
Wooden Rack — The Foundary

Bed — CB2
Teak Desk — Vintage West Coast Modern LA
Dresser — Vintage West Coast Modern LA
Credenza — Vintage Adaptions NY
Rug — Camille London
Rug — Stella Dallas Brooklyn
Chair — Urban Outfitters
Night Stump — Kalon Studios
Baskets — Connected Goods
Bolga Basket — African
Vintage Lamp — Noguchi
Brass Hooks — Rebel & Quill
Hanging Solari Bell — Cosanti Studio
Brass Wall Tassel Hanging — WKNDLA

Bathroom #1- Rug — Target
Shower curtain — Threshold Target
Stool — (part of kids table and chairs set) from Dwell Studio
Bath Toys — Shop Merci Milo
Turkish Towels — Amazon

The vintage dresser and side tables — west coast modern LA.
The wooden rattan children’s chair — Etsy (France)
The middle table and 4-piece chair set — dwell studio.
The bed sheets are vintage — Stella Dallas brooklyn.
The wall decor (cacti stickers) — Etsy.

Rug — Cold Picnic
Shower Curtain — Threshold Target
Peace Towel — General Store
Brass Water Can — Kaufman Mercantile

Thanks, Caroline!

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