Room of the Week: This Is the Two-Story Indoor Fire Pit of Your Dreams

The indoor fire pit inside a Haddonfield residence | Photograph by Pascal Blancon

The indoor fire pit inside a Haddonfield residence | Photograph by Pascal Blancon

My biggest home-buying regret is that I had “fireplace” on my nice-to-have list instead of my need-to-have list. This is my way of saying that my house doesn’t have a fireplace, and I regret it every winter.

So when I saw the ingenious two-story indoor fire pit inside this Haddonfield home, I knew I needed to find out the design details. Here, how it came to be, from the architect himself.  Read more »

Room of the Week: A Dreamy Old City Dining Room With Ceilings for Days

Photo by Andrea Cipriani Mecchi Photography

Photo by Andrea Cipriani Mecchi Photography

Imagine with me, if you will, the amazing dinner parties you could have in this Old City dining room. I can’t help but place myself right there at the head of the table, full-on fabulous Great Gatsby attire, with a long smoldering cigarette between my fingers, while I entertain my guests with my wit and charm. I don’t even smoke, you guys, and I’m probably not that charming, either.

But doesn’t this dreamy dining room just make you want host the most fabulous parties, with the light from that pretty chandelier glinting off your champagne flute?

In this week’s installment of Room of the Week, I got the skinny on how this pretty dining room came together. Pay attention, people. There’s plenty of design inspo to crib here.

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Room of the Week: An Eclectic 1840s Living Room in Northern Liberties

Northern Liberties rowhouse | Photo courtesy PS & Daughters

Northern Liberties rowhome | Photo courtesy PS & Daughters

I’ll admit it: I’m a sucker for wood beams. They can be a gamble, though. If you’re not careful in how you use them, exposed wood beams can feel too heavy — or make a tall ceiling feel unfortunately low — so they only work in the right spaces. This, my friend, is one of those spaces.

In our first installment of Room of the Week, we’re taking a voyeuristic peek inside a fabulous open-concept living room/dining room in Northern Liberties that seamlessly blends old with new, original with modern, in a totally livable, family-friendly way. Check out all the inside design details below.  Read more »

9 Coffee Mugs from Philly Artists That Are Worth Getting Out of Bed For

coffee mug lead

Mitz Mug at Felt + Fat

On cold, wet days like today, the last thing I want to do is even think about getting out of bed. The only thing that makes it tolerable is the endless supply of coffee awaiting me. And the best way to make your coffee time even more enticing is by pouring said coffee into a gorgeous handmade vessel.

To wit: this roundup of nine unique coffee mugs — all made right here in Philly — that’ll actually get you out of bed with a smile. Or at least, something very closely approximating a smile. (Because let’s be real.) Read more »

Home Design Inspiration: 8 Gorgeous Ways to Add Geometric Elements to a Room

The Inspiration: A dramatic geometric space by famed designer Kelly Wearstler

The Inspiration: A dramatic geometric space by famed designer Kelly Wearstler | Photo courtesy Kelly Wearstler

Interiors are going geometric this season with sculptural circles, crisp angles and eye-catching cubes. Trust us: Math never looked this good. Take a cue from the geometry-soaked inspiration room above and work some geometric elements into your decor with our picks below.  Read more »

6 Upcoming DIY Decor Workshops You Don’t Want to Miss

As a homeowner (or even a creative and savvy renter), there’s nothing more satisfying than successfully completing a DIY project in your home. Every time you look at, say, the tile backsplash you installed yourself, you find yourself beaming with pride. And I can tell you from experience that the feeling never really goes away.

If you’re looking to up your DIY ante, check out these upcoming local workshops that’ll hone your DIY prowess and spit you out on the other side with either a completed project, some serious know-how, or bothRead more »

How to Transform the Look of Your Home in One Weekend

A master bedroom in Doylestown | Photo courtesy East Coast Creative

A master bedroom in Doylestown | Photo courtesy East Coast Creative

Designer and DIY maven Monica Mangin might live in Bucks County — “I live in the woods, and I love it,” she says — but she knows all about the unique design challenges facing those of us who live in classic Philly rowhomes. The DIYer-turned-blogger-turned-TV host-turned entrepreneur and owner of East Coast Creative has bestowed her talents and aesthetic on many-a-Philly rowhome, so she knows her stuff.

In fact, last year she launched a home design-focused web series called The Weekender, which featured many homes from right here in Philadelphia. The show feels like something straight out of HGTV — styleless homeowners turn to our expert and host, Monica, for design help, and she completes five projects in a single weekend that totally transform their space — but it comes at a more web-friendly pace: Entire episodes last around 10 commercial-free minutes, and you can find them right on YouTube.

Season 2, which premiers today, branches out to homes beyond our region, but I chatted with Monica yesterday to get the skinny on what she learned about working in Philly homes during the show’s debut season, and to glean tips for totally transforming a space in a matter of days. Her insights below.  Read more »

Prediction: You Will Want Every Piece of Furniture From This Philly Design Firm’s Gorgeous Line at West Elm

Mitzie Wong (left) and Wendy Wurtzburger (right) of Roar + Rabbit

Mitzie Wong (left) and Wendy Wurtzburger (right) of Roar + Rabbit

You know you have found your soulmate in furniture when your friend Slacks a picture of a nightstand to you, and you both drool all over your respective keyboards. My soulmate in furniture happens to be my colleague, Emily Goulet, who over the weekend discovered — rather by accident — that Philly-based design firm Roar + Rabbit has a positively gorgeous furniture and home decor line at West Elm, which launched last year. The firm is helmed by venerable Anthro veterans Wendy Wurtzburger and Mitzie Wong.

The line includes everything from tea towels ($29 for three) to artwork (around $150 and up) to leather and velvet sofas ($1,699 and $1,099 respectively). The pieces are modern, heavy on geometry, gorgeously balanced and full of whimsy and elegant femininity.

You can see the full line for yourself here, but our favorite finds are below.  Read more »

10 Lessons I’ve Learned From Living in a 100-Year-Old Philly Rowhome

My house celebrates its 100th birthday this year. It’s weird, when I really stop and think about it, to ponder all the lives its lived — and all the people who’ve lived in it over the past century.

My husband, Chris, fell in love with our South Philly rowhome before I did. He had to convince me we should buy it. But it’s been nearly four years since move-in day, and, with countless improvement projects, DIY forays and homeownership lessons under our belts, I can say I finally came around, too.

Here’s what we’ve learned along the way. Read more »

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