Witty, whimsical, artistic, bold and creative. And I'm not only describing this Boho-vintage look, but the lifestyle of the person who embraces it. Erin Conway engages her followers on Instagram @kismet_house with her passion and keen eye for design, as well as her witty, honest and hilarious stories.
Kismet is a design diary of the 70s beach house Erin and her husband, Matthew, are renovating, along with their five year old son, Finnegan (seen below). I asked Erin to describe her design aesthetic and how it sets her apart. I'll be sharing her tips and advice, but something I have personally learned from my correspondence with Erin that I feel sets her apart is her passion for her family, friends and life and the way she bravely and boldly expresses her passions through design. It has been said that, "If nothing else, your home should speak to who you are. Your space should act as a personal memoir of your life, your loves and your trips."
Today's feature is a portion of the Conway memoir thus far with design tips to achieve this vibe in your home.
Handsome Finnegan at play in the Conway living room.
Erin describes her ever evolving personal style as "Brave, Bohemian, Authentic, Cozy, Cool, Eclectic." Bohemian rooms are usually fairly layered with rich tones and textures, giving a laid-back, casual and collected feeling. Scroll drown for Erin's tips to achieve the Boho-Vintage vibe in your home.
"I love plants and textures. Layered rugs and loads of pillows. Lots of rich tones combined with the sexy warmth of raw woods and neutral elements."
Notice the vintage wood bench and the warmth it brings to the room. I also love the way Erin adds texture and contrast to her rooms by laying her rugs. She was recently featured in Country Living Magazine.
You can learn more about achieving this layered rug trend and see Erin's feature by following this link: CountryLiving.com
Q. An eclectic style is so easy to love, yet a bit trickier to achieve. What advice do you have to bring the look together?
It is hard to say “how to” eclectic. Because eclectic is so different for so many people. A good trick, I think, is in order to give a room an eclectic vibe do NOT buy furniture sets. Chair plus sofa plus love seat from a big box store is an eclectic rooms enemy. Eclectic rooms overall feel is that they have been collected over time… even if everything is new. How? Nothing was bought in “sets”. My only leniency on that rule is a set of side chairs is okay. Pairs of matching chairs work in all styles, even eclectic. But mismatched chair vignettes are very impactful in eclectic design.
Q. What is your favorite design trend?
"Plants. No doubt. They are so impactful. They instantly warm up a space and make it feel like home. They're fabulous!! Also I name mine so that’s fun for me HA. My 5 babes are Biggie, Smalls (fiddle leaf fig), Sting (snake plant) and Wilson Phillips (3 succulents)."
Q. Can you tell us a bit about your creative process? Where do you start? What inspires you?
"My process is to start with a piece I ‘can’t live without’ and build from it. Often that is a piece of art or a rug. I am inspired by color more often than not. Sometimes I see a single color and want to redesign a space just to make that color feel at home. So I seek out pieces that will make it so. For my living room I found the deep green-blue of the mantle and it became the room's job to make it shine."
Her fireplace is one of my favorites! While it's not a working fireplace, it serves as the perfect focal point for the Conway living room. It just so happens that it was a Craigslist discovery..."I didn’t know I would find it but I did and design had to follow. It was cream and in shabby shape when I got it home. I knew I wanted to honor its bones but be bold, dramatic and moody with the color and Midnight in NY by Behr Paint was my winner. I think the impact is striking."
I also think the impact is striking!
Erin credits her Mom for her design prowess. Every feature I do there are one or two special comments that memorialize the post for me. This is one of those :
"My Mom was like me. Always changing [and] evolving her design, and mostly pushing the envelope. My Mom had what we lovingly referred to as 'where’s waldo paper' on our kitchen walls. It was bold and loud and fabulous. She knew what we didn’t and that was take chances and be bold and trust your gut. We saw something wild and she saw something wow. The result on the walls was stunning and the room ended up being photographed for a local magazine. I learned from her to take chances in design and tune out the noise. Trust your gut. Sometimes you get it wrong, but you know what, you repaint, repaper, try again. I always follow my instincts. Even when Pinterest says otherwise."
Q. What is (or has been) your favorite space to decorate in your home?
"My current favorite space is our 'formal' living room. I use quotes around formal because we are about as formal as the Clampetts. But the space feels like a true testament to my current style. Warm, put together but totally bohemian and cozy. You want to grab a drink and sit with your girlfriends and talk crap on Corrine from the Bachelor here… and I dig it."
Q. What is your current color obsession?
"Blush and shades of green. Forest green, soft green and blush with a grey neutral and wood tones. Yasssssss please."
Q. Do you have any go-to places or stores for interior design finds?
"Article - obsessed with their entire line of all things. Target - I am an addict and its a real problem, send help. Craigslist - yup good’ol CL is my homeboy. Etsy. I shop small more often than I shop big at this phase of my design life. Small shops just do it right. My fave small shops currently are: TheDancingTapestry, DanielleOakeyShop, FibersByFilia, KSDion, SaltedWordsDesign, ShopeMindaHome"
I want to thank Erin for allowing me this opportunity to share with you her style tips and advice, and little about her. You can see more of the Conway home and their adventures on Instagram @kismet_house.
It's easy to see Erin's passion not only for design, but for people..."getting to chat with people on instagram has been a passion for me. Telling stories and making people laugh. Getting to connect with the amazing people choosing to give me time out of their day. It’s amazing. I wanted to be able to expand on that. I have stories to tell and tips to share. Blogging seemed to be the obvious outlet. Until HGTV gives me a show that is." She is launching her own blog later in March and I know it will be a huge success.
Design tip: To achieve this vibe in your home start with a neutral palette, and add little pops of color. Choose one tone or color to work with and choose complementary colors to add in the rugs, pillows, and knickknacks. Vintage ceramics, vintage brass, rustic woods, and funky textiles are some accessories to look for to achieve an eclectic boho-vintage vibe.
Have a wonderful day!!