Jennifer’s High-Low Mix in Boston
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Name: Jennifer, Paul and Shea
Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Size: 840 square feet
Years lived in: 3 years; Rented
When I met Jennifer Allen of Market Home she was selling her housewares at the South End Open Market. A set of pristine Kartel ghost chairs, a cast iron antler candleholder and a curvy vintage settee were among the goods that made me stop and take notice.
Setting foot inside the apartment that she shares with her fiancé and his son I spot a few familiar items in an expertly styled high-low mix of one offs, vintage pieces and big box bargains. Scanning the room I have a tough time telling which is which. I guess the large, graphic rug is designer and she corrects me with “TJ Maxx.” She’s disarmingly genuine in her enthusiasm for her finds and is equally excited to share her resources. It’s this passion for both discount finds and high end treasures, coupled with the ability to seamlessly put it all together that makes the end result all the more interesting.
Apartment Therapy Survey:
My Style: Eclectic, a mix of vintage and modern.
Inspiration: Everything. Curves of a chair, patterns on a rug, textiles, tea cups, Domino Magazine…I kept every issue.
Favorite Element: My grandmother’s bench. Paul rescued it from a corner shop after it was sold out of my family. He convinced the shop owner to sell it back and refinished it just in time to surprise me for Christmas. When I was little, each time I arrived to my grandmother’s house she would greet me while sitting on her favorite bench. When I received the bench back that Christmas tears of joy were flowing, especially when I noticed the plaque with her name.
Biggest Challenge: Finding a happy medium between a kid-friendly and adult welcoming home.
What Friends Say: They love our apartment and want me to decorate their own homes.
Biggest Embarrassment: The mountain of clothes that seems to accumulate in random spots around the house. I blame the house not having enough room and lack of dressers/storage.
Proudest DIY: My dining table refinished in Graphite by Annie Sloan chalk paint.
Biggest Indulgence: My Queen Anne 1940’s desk purchased from HomeStretch Antiques.
Best Advice: Don’t be afraid to mix vintage and modern pieces. Invest in good quality classic pieces and then give yourself time to fill in the holes with things you find along the way. Your furniture needs shouldn’t be purchased as one big set from a cookie-cutter home store.
Dream Sources: ABC Carpet & Home, Anthropology, Charles Spada Interiors, and Elements of Style.
Resources of Note:
PAINT & COLORS
• Portland Grey- Benjamin Moore
• Indian River- Benjamin Moore
• Camel Back- Benjamin Moore
• Sofa- Estate Sale Find (CB2)
• Rug- Overstock.com
• Roman Column- Yard Sale Find
• Cubed Book Shelf- Yard Sale Find (west elm /painted white)
• French Arm Barrel Chair- Antique Flea Market
• Large Mirror- Ikea
• “Flora” Statue- Inherited from my Grandmother
• Wood Shelving Unit- Ikea
• White Sofa Table- SoWA Vintage Market
• Queen Anne Desk- The Homestretch, Lower Mills, Dorchester
• Rug- TJ MAXX
• Magnetic Boards- Ikea
• Plaster Wall Hanging- Yard Sale Find
• Leather chair- Street Find (matching chair in bedroom)
• Ivory Louis Ghost Chair- Kartel
• Dining table- Craigslist Find (painted graphite by Annie Sloan chalk paint)
• Italian Arm Chairs- Craigslist Find
• Cups and Saucers- Zara Home (Italy)
• Red Asian Stool- Brimfield
• Artwork- Somerville Theater by Jodie Baehre
• Elephant- Inherited from my Grandmother
• Bed- Pottery Barn
• Desk- Ikea
• Bookshelf- Ikea
• Nightstand- Craigslist Find
• Eagle Mirror- My Grandfather’s
• Leather Chair- Street Find
• Lightning Sculpture- Yard Sale Find
• Galway Sign- Flea Market Find
• Frames- Ikea
• Blue Desk and Matching Chair- Ikea
• Lamp- Ikea
• Storage Bench- Home Goods
• Whisky Box- Flea Market Find
(Images: Kim Lucian)
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