This 103-Year-Old Oakland Rental House’s Style Is “Vintage Lullaby”

published May 30, 2024

This 103-Year-Old Oakland Rental House’s Style Is “Vintage Lullaby”

published May 30, 2024
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“Built in 1921, this house was home to Soviet émigrés for decades, and their grandchildren still own it today. The layout mimics a shotgun style, apart from interior doors that close off the two bedrooms and bathroom in the rear of the house,” begins Kirsten White, who has rented this place with her partner for the last two years. They decided to rent it “after falling in love with the hardwood floors, unique cabinetry, and location.”

“My partner, Geoff, is an attorney and I work in public policy in San Francisco. Because we both primarily work from home, we had to find enough space for two desks. I am still trying to figure out how to make these more cozy!” Kirsten continues.

Credit: Kirsten White
"I have upcycled or refinished a number of furniture pieces in our home," Kirsten explains. "Sometimes I go with paint; sometimes I stain the wood. My favorite project so far has been a scalloped-edge table I found on Facebook marketplace for $100, and painted a vibrant pink. I absolutely love the Art Deco vibe it brings to the space."

“I am autistic, so I have very strong preferences for color, textures, and overall feel for each piece in our home. My vision is for a space with colors and textures that invite rest — what I call ‘vintage lullaby.’ I love a backdrop of verdure, neutral focal points, and pink accents. Even though a lot of our furniture is mid-century modern, I am enthralled by Art Deco and want as much pink as possible. I try to get at Deco silhouettes and palettes in a more tranquil way,” Kirsten admits.

“I love curating thoughtful tableaus that spotlight vintage treasures. We source vintage pieces from Facebook Marketplace, thrift shops, and estate sales. Tracking down the perfect piece can take time, but finding well-loved pieces with unique histories is worth the wait.”


Credit: Kirsten White


  • Couch — Living Spaces
  • Throw — Anthropologie
  • Coffee Table — Estate Sale
  • Stool — Etsy
  • Pictures and Art — Estate Sales
  • Side Table — Vintage
  • The Scalloped-Edge Table — Facebook Marketplace
Credit: Kirsten White


  • Cabinet — Vintage
  • Pitcher — Ayla Mullen Ceramics
  • Painting — Estate Sale
  • Candle Sconce — SuiteMeadow on Etsy
  • Dining Table and Chairs — Soy Vintage LA
  • Painting — Elisa Valenti
  • Tablecloth — Etsy
  • Rug — Revival Rugs
Credit: Kirsten White


  • Print — Reyna Noriega Studios
  • Watercolor — Me
  • Dresser — Kent Coffey
  • Knickknacks — Vintage Markets and Estate Sales
  • Rug — Ruggable
  • Nightstand — Kent Coffey
  • Bed Set — Sleepy Kitty Textile

Thanks, Kirsten!

This tour’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.