Design Ideas

Stacey & John’s Crazy Quilt of An Apartment

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(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Name: John and Stacey Cline (and dog, Laz)
Location: Skinker-DeBaliviere Neighborhood — St. Louis, Missouri
Size: 787 square feet
Years lived in: 2 — rented

Minimalists, avert your eyes. Stacey and John’s apartment is the interior equivalent of a crazy quilt. It comprises an eclectic mosaic of recycled items, vintage fabrics, and reclaimed tidbits that Stacey brings in, mainly from thrift stores. She’s not afraid of pattern and color, and mixes them liberally to good effect. A multitude of interesting curiosities are all creatively arranged.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)
(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Like the iconic quilts, all those seemingly disparate pieces come together as a lovely whole, making a home that’s both unique and familiar, traditional and new. It’s kind of what would happen if Martha Stewart did good drugs and got lost on the way home to Connecticut.

If you share Stacey’s aesthetic, you can visit her etsy shop, where she sells those items that don’t work their way into her own decor.

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Hm, let’s call it vintage-bright-slightly Martha Stewart-make it new-tell it slant-happiness mashup!

Inspiration: The usual — blogs, vintage fashion, nature, movies, and the serendipity of making what you have work together.

Favorite Element: The windows — being on the 2nd floor, we get tons of light all day! And I sort of like the railroad-style layout … it’s cool to be able to sit in the front room and look all the way into the backroom, taking the whole place in at once!

Biggest Challenge: Keeping the clutter at bay, not letting Etsy stock overtake the house, saying no to an item even when it has lots of potential, completing projects I bought because I didn’t say no to their potential, fighting boredom, time.

What Friends Say: Where did you find everything? Will you help me with my place?

Biggest Embarrassment: The office/sewing room. It’s basically a pit: things we don’t want end up there and never leave; things we want disappear in there. And it’s not pretty.

Proudest DIY: The cantilevered window-turned-plant shelf above the couch and the antique light fixture in the kitchen — I bought it at a barn sale, planning to tear out the very old wiring, then paint it and use it upside down as a table centerpiece, filled with glass vases or candles. John decided to patch it up with electrical tape and wire it up one day when I was gone. We were pleasently surprised that it actually worked! It might not be kosher, but it hasn’t set anything on fire…yet. Please don’t try this at home!

Biggest Indulgence: Good coffee, my lone piece of Van Briggle pottery, and an Anthropologie rug…once I actually save up and buy it!

Best Advice: Surround yourself with colors and things you love…and then remember they’re just things! And definitely make a space work with your life. Our bedroom used to be in the larger, brighter back room, but I had no space to sew and the office wasn’t functioning–swapping rooms and squeezing our bed into the old office has made such a difference!

Dream Sources: Time capsuled homes from the 1890s, 1920s, 1950s…shoot, let’s just say one house per decade for the past 150 years! And a 1950s fabric/dress shop!

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Resources of Note:


    • Rug: Target
    • Curtain rods: Lowe’s
    • “C” sign: Anthropologie
    • Couch: Salvation Army thrift store
    • Yellow chair: St. Vincent De Paul thrift store
    • Paint: Martha Stewart from Home Depot, “Sea Anemone”


    • Paint: Valspar (Martha Stewart color) from Lowes, #MS021 “Pinniped”
    • Curtains: thrift store
    • Table: Independence Center’s Clubhouse Shop
    • Hollyhock house painting: Sarah Luginbill


    • White rolling cart: The Purple Cow Antiques, St. Louis
    • Curtain: handmade
    • Everything in its right place print: Etsy seller thebigharumph
    • Black Bear on Sofa: Etsy seller amberalexander
    • Portrait on cotton canvas: Aubrey Studebaker


    • Paint: Behr from Lowes, #500F-6 “Hallowed Hush”
    • Curtains: Goodwill
    • “Headboard”: vintage hand painted Brunschwig and Fils fabric, “Pomegranate” pattern, Bexley Fabrics, Columbus, OH
    • Kissing Bears canvas papercut: Etsy seller thetimeisnow
    • Three’s a crowd animal illustration: Etsy seller corelladesign


    • Paint: Dark Green: Valspar “Ivy Wreath”; Light Green: Olympic “Sprite Twist”

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

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