This St. Louis House Is Full of Nature-Inspired Wallpapers and Dark Paint Colors

published Jun 6, 2023

This St. Louis House Is Full of Nature-Inspired Wallpapers and Dark Paint Colors

published Jun 6, 2023
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“During COVID, we (like almost everyone else) found ourselves shutting our in-person offices in New York City and shifting to a remote work life. When we realized our work would stay fully remote, we started rethinking our decision to be so far from family. I grew up in St. Louis and wanted my children to have the opportunity to spend as much time as possible with my 94-year-old grandmother, who has been such an inspiration in my life, as well as my parents,” begins Rebecca van Bergen, who is the founder and executive director of Nest, a nonprofit that supports the “responsible growth and creative engagement of the artisan and maker economy to build a world of greater gender equity and economic inclusion.”

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She moved with her family — husband, Chris van Bergen; kids, Ella van Bergen (10), and Sawyer van Bergen (8); and their Bernadoodle, Oliver — from New York City to Missouri, two years ago, and bought this large house in St. Louis’ Kirkwood neighborhood. “We wanted to lean into the Midwestern vibe of our new home, but not fall prey to just another suburban home, which all (more or less) look the same,” she writes.

“It was important to us that we kept our own individualism and personality and even bring some East Coast spunk to our quieter Midwest suburb! We do also work on a budget — we run a nonprofit, after all — but love leaning into our antiques and hand-me-downs and mix less expensive items from partners like Target and West Elm with more expensive items.”

“We also realized that living back in the Midwest is unique — the cost of living is certainly better, but that has more than just an impact on our wallets — it also means that small businesses, locally owned restaurants, and pop-ups all thrive better too — the cost of living means people can more easily explore, test, and innovate with their dreams, giving these more ‘off the beaten path’ towns a different kind of vibrancy and local flavor than we saw in the Big Apple,” she continues.




  • Mid-century sofa — West Elm
  • Throw pillows — Rifle Paper Co.
  • Vintage arm chair — Upholstery woven by my mother-in-law
  • 2 Eames rocking chairs — One from my grandparents, one magically found antiquing



  • Nest seal certified quilt — Pottery Barn (black & white no longer available)

Thanks, Rebecca!

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