Laurel & Conor's Silver Spring Family House

Laurel & Conor's Silver Spring Family House

Rachael Grad
Dec 17, 2009

Name: Laurel, Conor & their children Gianna & Michael
Location: Silver Spring, Maryland
Size: 1,400 square feet
Years lived in: rented for 3 years

Laurel and Conor have turned a rental house into a warm, comfortable family home. A creative person by nature, Laurel sewed most of the curtains and organized the decor. The small house has plenty of room for children Gianna (5 years old) and Michael (2.5) to play and for talented artist Laurel to have an art studio.

Laurel and Conor's home is flooded with sunlight and warmth. Gianna and Michael's room combines decor and toys that appeal to both - the patterns and colors are great for kids without favoring either boys or girls. Laurel's artwork is displayed throughout the house, but you can see more on her website.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our style: Traditional contemporary with a personal twist

Inspiration: Bauhaus, traditional Italian style; having a sense of humor with fabrics, patterns, textures, fine art, graphic design

Favorite Element: Having an art studio for Laurel in our home

Biggest Challenge: Making everything multifunctional (or overcoming the urge to) due to our LACK OF SPACE.

What Friends Say: the nicest thing anyone said was "Gosh, I just want to stay here."

Biggest Embarrassment: Our hillbilly front porch. No matter what we do with it, it looks like a dressed-up version of the Clampets' at best. May at well say it loud, since it's right out front for the world to see!

Proudest DIY: Not sure there's one we can zero in on. Laurel is most proud of taking a cookie-cutter colonial and transforming it into a very personal, pleasing place that both reflects the people who live here and serves their needs.

Biggest Indulgence: Shell mosaic armoire

Best advice: Only have things [in your house] that you LOVE.

Resources of Note:


    • most rooms are butter-colored (owner-chosen), but behind the shell armoire is an aqua that Laurel mixed herself.


    • Dining room table, chairs, sideboard and trunk in living room: Urban Retreat (an independent retailer in Reston, Virginia).
    • "Petrie" couch from Crate & Barrel.
    • Ottomans (with storage and tops that flip into trays) from Target.
    • Side tables from Pier 1.
    Couch: "Tulsta" IKEA chairs; Laurel dyed the slipcovers with Rit dye.
    • Coat hooks from Anthropologie.
    • Shell Armoire from Jean-Pierre Antiques in Georgetown.


    • Living: Target bases, Pier 1 shades.
    • Master bedroom: Anthropologie lampshades, IKEA and Target bases.
    • All overhead from owner


    • Kitchen: Hatch Prints, Gianna
    • Living room: small woodblock print from Time Zeitler; large painting above piano by Laurel.
    • Laurel's photographs in the hallway
    • Kids' Room: Woodblock prints (unknown artist), Gianna's portrait by Laurel
    • Master Bedroom: Icon "Our Lady of Perpetual Help" print, unknown artist, purchased at Church of St. Alphonsus Liguori in Rome, where the original icon is enshrined; sculpture by Laurel
    • art in studio by Laurel

Thanks, Laurel & Connor!

Images: Rachael Grad

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