Design

Bright, Bohemian Home

California House Tour

Photographer Jamie Street lives (and works) in a bright, bohemian San Diego home with her husband and two young sons. “It was a very lucky find,” Jamie says. “We found out we had to move, and a friend of a friend randomly posted this rental on Facebook. We loved it immediately.” Here’s a peek inside…

BEDROOM:
California House Tour

On creating a relaxed vibe: Our bedroom is definitely our most minimal space. To keep things serene, we kept the walls and bedding white, and let the art and rugs add color.

California House Tour

On making a bedroom feel special: I like to keep my treasures in the bedroom. We have wedding photos and a Cholla stick, which we collected in Joshua Tree.

California House Tour

One nighttime rituals: For a long time, Henry, our oldest, would only stay asleep if he was next to a warm body. So we’d take turns going to bed with him while the other parent would stay up. My husband would strum on his guitar and watch music documentaries with a good IPA on his nights up, while I would watch reruns while editing photos late into the night with a glass of wine. It isn’t glamorous, but the last four years have flown by and I know there will come a time when we will yearn for Henry’s affection! Ben and I both agree we would not have done it any other way.

California House Tour

On morning rituals: With a four-year-old and a baby, mornings are pretty chaotic. My husband is already at work when they wake up (he gets up at four!). The kids and I try to wake up slowly; sometimes we’ll have a snack and read a book in bed. Before we leave the room, I have to make the bed. We’ll do it informally — pull the comforter back, and pick up anything on the floor. Then the bedroom is a neat oasis I can go back into during the day, to get a break from the rest of the messy, messy house.

California House Tour

On keeping plants: I keep plants all over the house, especially in the bedroom. Here’s my tip for keeping plants: I used to beat myself up if they died, but then I decided to think of plants as long-term flowers. They will die, and it’s okay to buy new ones!

Mirror: Ikea. Rug: Lowell Portland. Striped blanket: Revolucion del Sueño. Woven wallhanging: handmade by Jamie, others here. Dresser: Craigslist score. Rocks print: Jamie Street.

HENRY’S ROOM:
San Diego house tour

California House Tour

On family music time: For Christmas, Henry asked for “real drums,” and now spends a lot of time drumming. He also expressed an extreme interest in piano, so I found one for free on Craigslist and paid to have it moved. (You can find always pianos on Craigslist because people don’t want to deal with moving them.) Of course, since we’ve gotten it he hasn’t wanted to play it, but maybe someday.

California House Tour

On the magic of Legos: Henry is very physical and has a hard time with things involving fine motor skills. But we have a neighbor who rubbed off on him, and he just got his first set of Legos. It’s amazing how he’ll just sit and play with them. He’s also really into collecting dried cicada shells. He has a bowl of about a hundred!

Rug: estate sale. Toy crane: Bruder. Stuffed fox: Sleepy King Etsy shop. Owl pillow: Progress South Park.

KITCHEN:
California House Tour

On the best go-to meal: We’re vegetarians, and probably our most frequent meal is quinoa, black beans, corn, cilantro and maybe a side of avocado, and we eat it with chips. It’s so easy, and the four-year-old eats it. I’m also really into the cookbook Jerusalem.

California House Tour

On the play area: When we looked at the house, I knew right away I would make part of the kitchen a little play area for Henry. It’s great for him to have his own place to sit and do things while I’m making meals.

Ceramics: Bread Whiskers Etsy shop, General Store. Play table: P’kolino.

LIVING ROOM:
California House Tour

California House Tour

On favorite music: My husband plays guitar and sings, so he and Henry have a lot of music time. Recently we’ve been listening to a lot of Buffalo Springfield, Neil Young and Paul Simon, which Henry loves.

jamiestreetphotography_cupofjo_living-2

On top places to shop: Most of our home goods are either from thrifting, estate sales or lucky Craigslist finds. We’ve always needed to be creative with finding things. I like my friend’s store Modernhaus and I’ve gotten a bunch of great things from Magpie & Rye, like my MQuan ceramics. I also love General Store when I’m in L.A.

Couch: “a million years old,” covered with homemade shibori drop cloth. Chair: Bertoia, from flea market. Pillows on chair: estate sale. Wall hanging: vintage. Rug: eBay.

OFFICE:
California House Tour

On the challenges of working from home: Right now, the main difficulty is that everyone knows I’m here. My four-year-old has a hard time knowing that I’m here and he’s not getting any solid attention. We haven’t been able to establish a time where I’m just working. I think if I worked outside of the house, that would be different. I would just go and the kids would stay here with their dad or a babysitter.

Also, if there’s a sink full of dishes or dog hair all over the living room, it can be hard for me to ignore it. I’ve had to learn to say, “This is work time.” That being said, working from home is also amazing! I mean, I just nursed my baby while I was talking to you.

California House Tour

On traveling for work: I travel a lot to photograph weddings, which can be hard, so I look at it as a trade-off with not having a daily commute time. Instead of commuting during the week, I commute on the weekends.

California House Tour

On work imitating life: There’s a similar aesthetic between my work and my home. My family photography tries to celebrate the imperfections in everyday life, and my house does the same. It’s definitely not perfect!

Rug: Modern Haus Design. Desk: Ikea hack. Shelving: made, from Hope Depot. Earth print: Little Lark, from Magpie & Rye. Artwork: Jamie Street.

California House Tour

Thank you so much, Jamie!

P.S. More home tours, including a California house and a lovely Brooklyn apartment.

(Home photos by Jamie Street. Family portraits by Aimee Westcott. Interview by Caroline Donofrio.)

  1. Such a lovely home and loving that office!! Where did you get that adorable moon print on the desk?? Love it so much!! Thanks again!! :)

  2. Annie says...

    A little late – just found you! Love your home. Where did you find the cool Brontosaurus?! Thanks

  3. E says...

    WHERE is that mirror from?! I’ve been looking for a big leaning mirror and the frame is so natural, it would be a perfect fit in my space!

    • kiley says...

      ikea

  4. LOVE their house, by far my favorite.

  5. Lisa says...

    My favorite house tour so far. I am in love with all the plants. Especially the fiddle leaf figs.

  6. Cristina says...

    beautiful !!!! So warm, imperfect and happy as the life with children’s !!!

  7. Hahaha I LOVE that someone admits to killing plants. And I love her philosophy on it. I love having plants but feel SO guilty about their eventual demise.

  8. Eeeeeeeee!!!!! Jamie I’m freaking out about how amazing your house looks! I can attest it is every bit as warm and loving in person as it is in the photos.

  9. love the keepsakes throughout the house, every corner is a happy memory :)

    Shruthi
    http://nyambura.co

  10. nicole b. says...

    Aww, so happy to see this! Longtime fan of Jamie through the sweet wedding blogging world. Dreamy home and beautiful photos. xo.

  11. thank you Jamie and Joanna for mentioning the source of the rug in your photos. as a super small (two person) business it means so much when you cite where your items come from :-) what a beautiful home!
    https://instagram.com/lowellshopgallery/

  12. Jessica says...

    What a beautiful and inspiring home!

  13. Really lovely. I love all the plants–slowly acquiring my collection–and the rugs! Though the link for the rugs leads to a site where if you type in “rug” it says nothing available … do they no longer sell rugs? Or can you do a rug post sometime soon? (Complete with tips on how to keep your new cat from ruining it…) thanks :)

    • hi Mary Kate,
      we definitely do sell rugs but they are all one of a kind and rarely make it to our online shop- we are happy to send you an email with options and you can get an idea of our taste/selection on our instagram:
      https://instagram.com/lowellshopgallery/

  14. Miranda says...

    Jamie photographed our family too and the pictures are so freakin’ phenomenal. Loved this little peek into their home.

  15. Cate says...

    Like Jamie herself, her home is beautiful, bright, full of love, and totally at ease. Love her, love her work, and loved seeing her celebrated on my fav blog. :)

  16. Yael says...

    Gorgeous! Could you please tell us where the cutout print (framed, on the dresser in front of the rocks print in the first picture) came from? It’s so beautiful, I’d love to know the artist. Thanks so much.

  17. ABSOLUTELY!
    This is a lovely, lived-in, full of life home – the best.
    xo

  18. Katie says...

    Where did they find those awesome low-profile platform beds? The one in the master bedroom is exactly what I’ve been looking for…

  19. PM says...

    i LOVE it!

  20. corinne says...

    Love this!! This home looks beautiful, lived in and full of love.

  21. So agree on her philosophy about plants. I used to get so sad when my plants weren’t doing well, but then realized it was making me even sadder looking at them, so out they went! New plants bring such joy. Especially orchids ;)

  22. I love the woven baskets throughout the house. Such a great way to store toys!

  23. Looks amazing. Everything just blends so harmoniously together <3

  24. malaika says...

    ooh I liked this post! It’s nice to see a home that looks lived in, and isn’t furnished straight from a store but rather with items that were collected over a period of time. inspired me to get on eBay!

  25. Jamie, this is lovely! How cool that music is such an important part of your world. I love how your home is so bright and full of plants, pattern and texture. Continued good luck sent from the Midwest XOXO.

  26. Hippy spirit…I love it! Beautiful home, light and colours…!

  27. Janine says...

    The plants! This is how i wish my home looked. Where are all the baskets ftom?

  28. What a warm, lovely home. Love the post – Thanks for sharing!

  29. This is beautiful. Also, Jerusalem is my favorite cookbook ever!

  30. can we also speak of the magnificence that is manray? man i love that cat.

  31. I’m having some serious rug envy! Off to browse Ebay…

  32. Love the chill and airy vibe of this home!!

  33. Alicia says...

    I love the small hanging textile in the bedroom! Where did she find it?

  34. such great spaces – they all seem relaxed and have room for spontaneity – something a comfortable home should have, in my opinion! love all the colour, especially with the rugs and the plants everywhere! beautiful space and home!

    http://www.footnotesandfinds.com

  35. Jamie is the best, THE BEST, and her house is the prettiest.

    Also, we get photographed by a lot of great photographers, because we’re lucky, but literally NOBODY takes family photos as well as Jamie does. I bribe her to photograph us whenever she’s within 25 miles of me.

  36. Can’t put my finger on what it is, but I love this house. The old records, the rugs, the natural plants all come together so warmly :)

  37. Tina says...

    I love this tour. I love that she spoke of her family the entire time and how the space relates to her family. That’s love.

  38. What a beautiful family & a beautiful home!

    I love what she said about thinking of plants as replace-able flowers because I love having greenery in my home but I’m an expert plant-killer.

  39. Bek says...

    Eeeeppp so all my art in my place is held in place by bright washi tape! (a combination of living in a rental + frames are expensive y’all!! :)
    But I’m so happy to see I’m not crazy woman and that Jamie has done this also! I hadn’t seen anyone do this before :) hahaha great post guys!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      that was one of my favorite parts of her home! it’s so casual and so pretty.

    • T says...

      love the size of those huge prints

  40. Lots of plants. Looks so good. I do the same to decorate my house. They are cheap and beautiful.

    http://www.jestcafe.com

  41. I’m in love with this home. It’s so relaxed and comfortable and PERFECT. I’ve got a soft spot for textiles and plants so this tour really did the trick. Thanks for sharing!

  42. Tara says...

    My brother used to collect hundreds of cicadas too! He called them “battle bugs.” So neat to hear of another kid in a different generation and on the other side of the country doing the same thing.

  43. Cec says...

    Love it! Finally a house that looks like people really live in it!

  44. Capucine says...

    Oooh how refreshing to see a California hippie lifestyle like mine on this New York-world site; thanks, Joanna, truly!

    I love the generous use of rugs and textiles, even in kid spaces. I believe in that, too. This could be my house.

    This mama is doing a lot. Working from home at my house (both parents), required a babysitter, a door, headsets, and the lesson: Mama is working and will be out for lunch with you. My children got that 100% quite young (after 18 months)…but the door, must have the door! And never, ever need to pee!

    That mirror in the bedroom, tell me it is attached to the wall! I’m scarred for life by the 1989 earthquake when I was a kid…

  45. Oh my gosh! I love Jamie’s photography! And, I never thought I’d see a house on Cup of Jo I’d actually been to:). A wonderful, warm, beautiful space, and a lovely, hospitable family!

  46. love the washi-taped posted of McWay falls at Big Sur!

    Ingrid
    sfgrid.blogspot.com

  47. So cute! This house feels very “real” to me, like they didn’t put on for the photoshoot (I mean they have kids, so I’m sure they majorly tidied up ;) but otherwise!)

    Really like the colors and bohemian vibe of the place ♥

    http://oprahismyreligion.wordpress.com

    • It is!

  48. Awesome ideas for playroom and kids rooms- love it! Great share ;)

  49. This family seems so sweet and relatable. I loved the part where she describes her bedtime routine with her son because my son is the same way. I often get annoyed that he’s holding me hostage while he tries to fall asleep (especially when he’s clearly not tired and trying to engage me in conversations of the babbling 3 year old variety) but then I remember that he’s still so little and this time will pass sooner than I can imagine. Thanks for reminding me.

  50. Katie says...

    I’m loving the low to the floor beds — what box spring/frame do they have and where can I find a similar one?

    • Lauren says...

      I’m wondering the same thing. At first I thought it was just a mattress on the floor (our current setup) but I noticed the corner of a wooden platform in one of the photos.

  51. Love the plants tip. The greenery throughout the home is beautiful. My daughter would probably be picking off all the leaves because she loves flowers/plants/leaves. But there is hope for hanging plants!

    Lendy
    http://www.twoplusluna.com

  52. Jessica says...

    Oh man that little kiddo picnic table….P’kolino doesn’t have it anymore and now I’m OBSESSED.

  53. sarah d. says...

    Jamie is an incredible woman, mother and photographer. We were lucky enough to have her photograph our family and the pictures are so treasured. Thanks for featuring a phenomenal San Diego mama!

  54. yael steren says...

    I’ve been wanting to make some changes to my apt, but I’ve been so busy I haven’t had the time! Thanks for sharing this post, I really enjoyed it! xx yael

    http://www.yaelsteren.com/blog/