Two People Went Hunting for Antiques at an Estate Sale… and Ended Up Buying the House

published Dec 9, 2019

Two People Went Hunting for Antiques at an Estate Sale… and Ended Up Buying the House

published Dec 9, 2019
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Home Type
Square feet
Sq ft

Name: Hillary and Johnny
Location: Tyler, Texas
Size: 4,000 sq ft
Years lived in: Owned one year

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Anyone who frequents large estate sales on the hunt for antique goodies might have thought about buying the gorgeous old home… but these two people actually did it. “We purchased the house when it was part of an estate sale last year, not having any intention of buying a home when we went to scavenge through the potential MCM goodies… yes, that was an expensive antique hunting day!” explains Hillary, who, along with Johnny Musselman, founder of the clothing brand En Sanctum, has transformed this house they unexpectedly purchased a year ago.

Credit: Minette Hand

“Our offer was to leave the house ‘as-is’ after the estate sale concluded, meaning that it looked like a bomb went off in many of our ‘before’ photos, because all of the items hidden in the cabinets for years were strewn throughout the house. But the house was truly a time capsule, having never been updated since it was built in the ’60s and it felt like we were stepping back in time, which we loved,” Hillary says.

Credit: Minette Hand

They haven’t shied away from adding their distinct personality to the space while renovating the house—a style they refer to as “’Mad Men’ meets Mezcal” vibes, but they’ve also done a great job of honoring the architectural roots of the house, as well.

“We kept many of the books and oddities left in the house by the original owners, Dr. and Mrs. HH Muntz, and it’s helped us piece together what we imagine their lives had been like, raising five kids in the 1960s,” explains Hillary. “We can gather that they were big on in-home entertaining, voracious readers, educationally driven, and traveled the globe extensively. I would like to think that we would be good friends if we were to have known them back in their heyday.” 

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: “Mid-Century Friendly,” Mid-Century Modern with a dose of Southwestern influence (we like to say our house has a “’Mad Men’ meets Mezcal” vibe).

Inspiration: Our inspiration primarily comes from traveling, art, and being in nature, but individuals that we often reference for interiors include Natalie Meyers and Sarah Sherman Samuels. 

Favorite Element: The natural light that pours into the living room in the afternoon.

Credit: Minette Hand

Biggest Challenge: The concrete slab was poured at different levels, lower in some rooms to accommodate the original carpet to then be the same height as the tile floors… it’s been a beast to work around!

What Friends Say: “When will you finally host a house-warming party?!”

Credit: Minette Hand

Proudest DIY: Uncovering a hidden skylight when scraping off old acoustic ceiling tiles in the kitchen.

Biggest Indulgence: The cork floors were probably our biggest expense, and they really weren’t a break-the-bank purchase as we did the install and carpet removal ourselves. And they were worth every penny; the movement in each plank hides dirt and crumbs, almost too well.

Best Advice: Live in the space for a few months before really going to town on renovating; some of the things that I despised when we originally walked through the house have now grown on me. Don’t feel pinned down to decorating in just one style/ aesthetic, even if you live in a very period-specific home. I like to say that our sense of style is “mid-century friendly.” It gives me room to breathe on developing my own style as we evolve with the house. Also, if you have your eye on something that is a little out of the budget at the time, save up for it and purchase what you really want rather than settling for something that will just get you by for the time being but be a constant regret.

Dream Sources: Eames and Herman Miller furniture in every corner of the house… also marble countertops. 


Credit: Minette Hand


  • Sherwin Williams – Alabaster White (any white walls/ ceiling are this color)
  • Sherwin Williams – Persimmon (peach bedroom)
  • Hidden Bar Wallpaper – Target 
  • Dining Room White & Cream Wallpaper – Target
  • White oval tulip table – Secondhand
  • Chandelier – Vintage
  • Mirror – Wayfair 37″ x 37″
Credit: Minette Hand


Credit: Minette Hand


  • Dining Table – All Modern
  • Chairs – Restored Eames fiberglass 
  • Velvet and wood chairs – Secondhand and recovered
  • Wallpaper – Target
  • Artwork – Personal collection (1956 oil painting by my great great uncle Robert Johnson of the south TX landscape near Pearsall, TX)
  • Rug – The Noble Knot
  • Cork Flooring – Build Direct
  • Crystal glassware – Family heirlooms
  • Gold flatware – Oneida Amazon
  • Ceramic plates – World Market
  • Woven chargers – Target
Credit: Minette Hand


Credit: Minette Hand



Credit: Minette Hand


  • Vintage drafting table – Vintage 
  • Black wooden chair – Personal collection (funny story – Senator Chilton (TX early 1900’s) had the chair specially made for his very large brother, as his brother couldn’t fit into any of the other furniture in the house when he visited, and we inherited the chair when my in-laws restored the Chilton mansion in the early 2000’s.)
  • Cork Flooring – Build Direct
  • Artwork – Personal collection 
  • Framed Photograph looking at mountains by our friend Matthew Genitempo
Credit: Minette Hand


  • Nightstands – CB2
  • Curtains – West Elm (discontinued color, panels linked in a different color)
  • Curtain Rods – Amazon
  • Southwestern pillows – Secondhand
  • Woven shams- Pottery Barn
  • Rug – West Elm
  • Wall sconces – Target
  • Side Chair – Pottery Barn
  • Ceiling Fan – Haiku Fan (Wifi Enabled)
  • Dresser – Estate sale
  • Cork Flooring – Build Direct
  • Bed Skirt in Natural Flax Linen – West Elm
  • White quilt – Target
Credit: Minette Hand


  • Bedding – Target Opal House Sheets
  • White linen duvets and shams – Target 
  • Lumbar Pillow – Pottery Barn
  • Green Pillows – West Elm
  • Leather and metal chair – Four Hands
  • Patterned rug – The Noble Knot
  • Curtains – West Elm (same as Master bedroom, discontinued color)
  • Curtain Rod – Amazon
  • Artwork – Personal collection. The watercolors were painted by my grandmother in the 1970s)
  • Basket – IKEA
  • Wooden and rattan bed frames – Vintage
Credit: Minette Hand


  • Paint Color – Persimmon by Sherwin-Williams
  • Curtains – IKEA
  • Curtain Rods – Amazon
  • Cream chair – Pottery Barn 
  • Bed Frame – All Modern
  • Duvet/ pillows  – Target
  • White shams and quilt – Pottery Barn
  • Ceiling fan – Haiku
  • Printed rug – The Noble Knot
  • Black Trunk – Lucas Street Antiques in Dallas, TX
  • Artwork – Local thrift and consignment shops
  • Nightstands – IKEA 


  • 3 nude Charcoal sketches – Personal collection (college roommate turned local artist Mandy Cave


Correction: This post has been updated to be more accurate.

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