Jenn's California Gathering Place

Jenn's California Gathering Place

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Nora Taylor
Jan 28, 2016

Name: Jenn
Location: Goleta, California

Ten years after I fell in love with Santa Barbara, my husband and I managed to scrape together enough to buy a home in the area. However the home we could afford had been abandoned for 10 years, when we moved in there were no doorknobs, no light fixtures, and the property was covered in shoulder-high weeds. All the furniture we owned at the time was inherited or thrifted without much of an overall plan, plus we had just been living in a tropical climate, which was hard on our stuff.

After getting the basics taken care of (i.e. some hot afternoons with a weedwacker) I was able to focus on interiors. The problem was, I had no real idea what our style was. My husband and I are both working on our PhD’s in geography, so travel and collecting maps and globes are essentially part of our job.

I refined my style by following designers on Instagram and when I liked a room I made a note of what it was specifically that I liked- that’s how I figured out I have a thing for textiles! As a California native, I found myself influenced by “California style”- bohemian, global, and comfortable. Pretty much all the furniture, with the exception of the TV hutch, was thrifted or found on craigslist (the best find might have been the knock-off Beni Ourain from Goodwill for $25).

We have two young daughters, and I never want to stress when they spill or jump on something- I highly recommend using outdoor rugs inside! With respect to accessories, a lot is DIY or from local artists or artist friends. I am most proud of the way in which our house has become a gathering place for friends and family. Our guest room is “booked” most weekends, there is always something in the crockpot, and there is always a crew of kids building something with blocks in the living room. As someone who has found “home” after a lot of traveling, knowing that the people we love are at home when they come to our house has been a wonderful thing to facilitate.

Thanks, Jenn!

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