Swell Dwelling

A Swell Dwelling: The Man Lodge At Last!

Friends and family, welcome to The Man Lodge. After a year and a half of planning, collecting, arranging, and finally painting, we’ve turned our tiny office into a dark, cozy nest that’s perfect for such manly activities as smoking a pipe, reading the morning paper in slippers and a red, velvet robe, and polishing a collection of hunting knives. JK! We don’t do any of those things. We DO use our office for surfing the interwebs, recording a sweet tune or two, and oh-so-exciting homeworks!

Despite the theme, I’ve actually become quite attached to this supposed den of masculinity. I’m certainly in there more than Brian! But I don’t think he envies all the homework I have to do…

We just finished painting this past weekend, and we decided to take a risk with the color. I’ve never been a real fan of dark colors, but we wanted to truly embrace the “richness” of the Man Lodge decor and chose this dark, grayish-blue. While the official paint color name is Mt. Etna, we’re calling it Sea Serpeant. Who’s to stop us?

What we love most about the space are all the tiny surprises–the heirlooms and pieces of decor that have personal and historical significance. See that giant map of Missouri? That belonged to Brian’s grandfather. It’s covered in a grimy layer of soot and smoke from Grandpa Ken’s pipe. You can’t buy that kind of character!

A vintage metal wastepaper basket, a raggedy chair from Goodwill, a leather keepsake box from Spain, a coaster from our favorite British buddies. These things are beautiful to us.

The pictures on the wall (third photo from the top) include a card from our wedding invitations, a photo of Brian’s great grandfather, grandfather, and uncle (a little cowboy at the time) standing with their prize winning bull, Brian’s beloved lumberjack print, and a picture of his family’s old farm. We also turned the room’s tiny closet into a book-nook of sorts, with a giant wooden bookshelf filled with more treasures.

And every time we leave the Man Lodge, we’re reminded of Poor Lucy (Brian’s great great aunt who died from a sudden chill) and the rest of his Italian immigrant ancestors. It is a rich history we get to behold! A rich and interesting history, perfect for a mysterious, masculine (not really) office.

Leave a comment
Tagged , , , |
Swell Dwelling

Swell Dwelling: Sweet Dreams

cat and monster

The whole reason we got married was to get a new mattres. Ok, well, that’s not true at all, but we really wanted to update our late 70s model mattress with something a bit nicer! But we didn’t stop there. We used the new mattress as an excuse to buy new stuff for the rest of our bedroom, to make it feel cozier. Below are some highlights from our progress thus far.

We’ve got a whole new sleep system: mattress, duvet, cover. We still need new pillow covers for the throw pillows, though. It’s quickly become Fitzy’s new favorite place. He just loves that fluffy pillow top!

We’ve also tried our hands at arranging some new/re-positioned wall art.

Here’s another view of said wall art… and new curtains! We need to steam out those wrinkles. We’ll also be painting in the coming weeks, so stay tuned for that (and please ignore the messy nightstand).

More curtain wrinkles! And a peek at our fave rug.

We also got a vacuum, so now we can have rugs. Well, rugs that aren’t covered in dirt and a layer of black cat hair!

More wall art. Please ignore messy dresser. Do not ignore silly cat.

More silly cat. Fitzy’s not the only one who loves our new bedroom.

2 Comments
Tagged , , , , , , , , |
Swell Dwelling

Swell Dwelling: Cuttin’ a Rug

mod interior design, sheepskin rug

With all of our new hardwood floors (!), we’re in need of some plush area rugs to keep our little toesies cushioned and our rooms a-swingin’.  Luckily, we got Sherman (pictured above), a vintage sheepskin rug, from Brian’s Grandma Jane.  Thank you, Grandma Jane!  (aside: I’m like an anthropomorphizing tornado, naming everything in my path…)  Sherman seems to fit nicely in the living room, but we’ve still got the bedroom and the man lodge (aka office) to pad, not to mention a welcome mat for the front door.  And you know what that means… shopping!  So, I’ve picked out a few dandies for said rooms.  Wanna help us choose?

Continue reading

Swell Dwelling

Swell Dwelling: This is not an Elks Lodge

{ Union Man: 1938 from Shorpy }

As we’ve mentioned previously, we’re moving. Now it just so happens, our new apartment will have a a bonus room! Sarah and I have decided to turn it into some kind of work room, but at first we were unsure of what exactly that would mean. Now we know. It will be a kind of throw back room: an early 1900s-ish men’s study or “man lodge” as we’ve begun to call it. Of course that doesn’t mean Sarah can’t play, too. I’ve been slowly gathering up items that would fit this style for awhile now, but our decision to go this direction hinged on re-watching There Will Be Blood, and thinking: “That was intense . . . and awesome.” So today, we’ll share some inspirational pictures for you, and in the coming days, the Shopping Sherpa will help us by digging through the interwebs for some essential man lodge items.

Continue reading

Swell Dwelling

Swell Dwelling: Bliss in a Teacup

sweet vintage home of Bliss in a Teacup

Now here’s a dwelling I can appreciate.  Bunting, crochet, teapots, and vintage portraits?  That’s a recipe for sweetness… a home fit for happiness!  Make room, Becka, cause I’m movin’ in!  Not only does Becka’s Flickr photostream boast romantic images of her home, she’s got a lovely blog full of happy adventures AND a swoon worthy shop with embroidered clocks and wooden bookmarks, all under the moniker Bliss in a Teacup.  How befitting.

Swell Dwelling

Swell Dwelling: Kay Loves Vintage

Kay Loves Vintage is a lovely little blog I stumbled upon recently.  I especially love browsing through Kay’s flickr photostream, where I found these photos of her swank Dutch home.  Sweet and cozy looking, no?

interior design, home decor by Kay Loves Vintage

A Westervin Wedding, Swell Dwelling

Swell Dwelling: Trampoline

Not only does Kim Ludy have a great eye for vintage — she’s got a collection of treasures for sell at Trampoline — but her interior styling and sweet, simple photographs are a pleasure to behold.  The beautifully rich colors are balanced with a sparsity of ornamentation, which makes these spaces seem livable and lovable.  And there’s the toy fire truck!  Hello!  Two words:  Awe. some.

Leave a comment
Tagged , , , , |
Swell Dwelling

Swell Dwelling: Party Perfect

How do you know if you’re an overachiever?  If, for your fiancé’s birthday party, you’ve made a canopy of streamers that covers your entire ceiling, using strips of magazine organized by dominant color and arranged in rainbow order, then it’s probably a safe bet.

5 Comments
Tagged , , |
Swell Dwelling

Swell Dwelling: Elisabeth Dunker

Hello, warm and cozy looking home.  You know what I like about you?  You don’t follow all the trends of mod simplicity, harsh lines and vast expanses of unwelcoming white.  There’s a fuzziness about you, like being sleepy on a Saturday morning, wearing the sheets like a robe as I pour my glass of good morning milk.  You’re worn and calm.  Let’s be friends.

{photos from Elizabeth Dunker of Fine Little Day }

2 Comments
Tagged , , |