Design

John Derian Lives in a Sea Captain’s House

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Have you been to a John Derian store? The home goods shop is like a grandpa’s attic, with amazing curiosities everywhere you look. It’s no surprise that John’s 18th-century Provincetown home is just as transporting. “A sea captain used to live here, and then a family got it in the 1930s,” he says. “I’ve lived here for 11 years and love the history here.” Here’s a peek inside …

STAIRS:

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

On a twist of fate: I was visiting my friend in Provincetown, and this house had a ‘for sale’ sign. It looked abandoned, and I’m a sucker for a column. When I called the number, they said it was under contract, but months later, I found out the sale had fallen through. As soon as I walked in, I said, I LOVE THIS HOUSE. It was like stepping back in time. I even love the smell. There’s a naturalness to it — it feels good when you walk in.

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

On respecting the past: I renovated the plumbing and electric, but left the rest of the house how it was, even the peeling wallpaper. A year afterward, my brother visited and said, ‘Take your time renovating it.’ I didn’t have the heart to tell him I already had.

SITTING ROOM:

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Sofa: John Derian x Cisco Brothers. Painting: Pat De Groot. Pillows and throws: handmade by Jeanette Farrier.

On a passion for movies: Growing up, on Saturday and Sundays, there were 10, 2, 4 and 6 o’clock movies on TV. I’d hide in the basement watching three in a row — until someone would bust me to go do yard work. I liked I Know Where I’m Going and Black Narcissus. Movies taught me a lot about interiors.

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Chair: John Derian. Lantern: antique. Candles: similar.

On towering candles: A friend and I went to a store that sells all these tall candles. He was giving me grief, saying, ‘Why would anyone use those?’ And weirdly, a week later, we were at a work event and they had the candles and they looked great. He was finally like, ‘I get it.’ Tall candles bring the light above everyone, and you can see and play games and eat. If they’re too low, it doesn’t really work.

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

On hanging art: I wanted to keep the house as organic as possible, so I hung things on the nails that were there instead of adding nails. I really appreciate seeing how things evolve.

DINING ROOM:

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Still life: Evelin Bodfish.

On falling in love: My boyfriend Stephen and I met at a dinner party. It was a set up, although I didn’t know until six months later. They all knew. It has been a decade now. He’s such a great guy. He dances, he cooks, he likes music, he’s a photographer, he’s the whole range. He’s 10 boyfriends in one.

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

On hosting guests: In the first few years, we had to work out kinks, but now we have it down to a science: many of my friends like to set the table or cook, we all do things together. I always have sparkling water in the fridge, and I do a sunny-side-up egg in olive oil in the morning, which friends now call the ‘John Derian egg.’ I think it’s funny that my friends are calling me by my whole name.

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Dining table and chairs: antique. Sofa: John Derian. Cushions: Jeanette Farrier.

On adding drama: The ceilings are very low, and it’s fun to play with the scale. I like how you can hit the ceiling with an arrangement of flowers.

On cozy retreats: What is it about nooks? Once, when I was too old — maybe 26 — I was getting something from my closet, and it felt so inviting that I lay down, curled up and slept for an hour. I still remember that nap. In the dining room, there’s an alcove with a sofa and table. I sit there a lot. It’s very nook-y. It’s a nook-y nook.

KITCHEN:

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

On playing games: When it comes to games, I’m like a terrier with a bone. We use Bananagram tiles to play another game called Anagrams. It’s exciting, but stressful. We also play Canasta, Boggle and Scrabble. We’ll play Celebrity in the kitchen, even with the person who’s cooking, so we can all hang out together.

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

On favorite things: Sometimes in our stores, we’ll sell things I’ve become attached to, and it makes me sad for a moment. I’m proud of the collaboration we do with Astier de Villatte, and the company in England that makes porcelain fruits and vegetables. In the fruit bowls, the watermelon and zucchini are fake.

JOHN’S BEDROOM:

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Bed, dresser: antique. Bedspread: Lisa Corti. Charcoal art: Benekker.

On early mornings: My room is in the back because it’s quiet. The funny thing is, Provincetown is so far out by the ocean, it’s super bright because the sky is open all around you. I don’t have curtains, so at 4:45 in the morning, the sun shines right on my face.

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Sofa: John Derian x Cisco Brothers. Table: antique. Pot: Guy Wolff.

On getting spooked: The first six months, people would ask me if I got scared at night. When the house got renovated, some floors were ripped up, and there was a windstorm of spiritual activity. I kept telling the house, out loud, ‘It’s going to get better!’ But I don’t think there’s anything here I need to worry about.

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

On collections: Growing up, I collected coins, rocks, shells, things from nature. I still love them. Even nowadays, when I get home, I’ll empty my pockets and have things like feathers and nails.

GUEST BEDROOM #1:

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Canopy bed, bedside table, Belgian impressionist painting: antique. Bedspread: Jeanette Farrier. Throw: Brahms Mount.

On guest beds: My approach to beds is pretty simple: I do a top and bottom sheet and a little blanket; and I like layering options for people. I have John Robshaw and Matteo bedding. Duvets just seem too hot in the summer. And does anyone really know how to put on a duvet cover?

GUEST BEDROOM #2:

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Bed, chair and lamp: antique. Bedspread: Matteo. Painting: Hugo Guinness.

On a homey vibe: It’s nice when guest rooms have a dresser so people can put their clothes away. Even if I’m in a hotel for two days, I like to unpack and pretend I live there. Plus, a chair and table if possible, in case guests want to draw or write.

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Art: Paul Lee. Bench and cushion: antique.

On gifts: We don’t use the fireplace in the summer, so my friend Susan gave me some tumbleweed to put in there.

BATHROOM:

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Table, Parisian nude art, bathmat: antique. Tub hardware: Barber and Wilson’s Co.

On bathroom decor: The nude that’s in here, it just sort of happened! I have two nudes in two bathrooms. I never really thought about it! But nudes in bathrooms make sense.

ART STUDIO:

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Table: Paula Rubenstein.

On trusting your gut: I once knew a man in Boston who hung up a woman’s shoe as if it were art. Anything that strikes your fancy can go on a wall. The idea of what art is, it’s so broad. What do you want to surround yourself with that you think is beautiful?

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

On Provincetown: On New Year’s Day, I run into the water. There’s a polar bear club, and I join in. In the summer, we sit on the stoop before dinner and have a cocktail and watch people. It’s great. Everyone comes here to get their groove on, straight or gay, you see all these people celebrating life.

EXTERIOR:

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

John Derian's Provincetown House Tour

Thank you so much, John!

P.S. More house tours, including a book lover’s paradise in Copenhagen and a high rise apartment in NYC.

(Photos by Alpha Smoot for Cup of Jo. Styling by Kate Jordan.)

  1. Heather McMunigal says...

    I am still not over this home tour. Planning a birthday weekend in NYC in a few months, and I have to visit his shop!

  2. Nina says...

    Oh i love this. When I was a teenager I took care of some kids with another high school friend at Martha’s Vineyard. The family had lived there for generations so had a house in Edgartown that the Great-grandmother lived at, then the house in the outskirts (on the beach) that they rented out to people, then the grandmother’s house, the servants quarters in the garage, another house for the kids (the parents) and then a cabin we stayed in with the little kids. It was amazing. and the house in Edgartown reminds me of this…so much fun to explore and feel the years of people through the home.

  3. lynda fitzgerald says...

    I am not sure if this has been mentioned yet but his PTown shop is actaullly AT this house. Of course one can not get into his house but the shop is at his actual home. The shop is charming and lovely and should not be missed if you are on Cape Cod!

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      yes!!! the door with the whale poster peeking out is where the shop is :)

  4. Anna says...

    I love, love, love the movie The Ghost and Mrs Muir and can totally see the story taking place in this house. What a beautiful and respectful home and owner’s story! x

  5. I love the originality of this place! Leaving the peeling wallpaper instead of replacing it is such a unique touch.

    xx

  6. l love his story about movies inspiring decor. I’m fascinated by production design too. Some of my favorite movies I tend to watch without the sound & just absorb all the background details..

  7. Lauren says...

    Really unique and inspiring!

  8. Claire says...

    I love the art, and all the beautiful textiles, the upholstered chairs at the dining table, the basket of antique keys, the seagull standing on the little table by the couch, the abundance of sea treasures, and the tumbleweed in the fireplace. And such a rich and wonderful picture in my head about the friends having cocktails on the stoop in the summer evenings.

  9. Alana says...

    So refreshing to see a house like this, and the other eclectic homes that cup of jo has been featuring. As I looked at the pictures I found myself wondering about the creakiness of this house. I wonder what it sounds like when someone walks up those stairs… haha.

  10. This home is an absolute dream. I love the peeling wallpaper matched with the clean white couches and that bathroom is incredible.

    briana

  11. Mary van hiel says...

    My daughters and I are huge John Derian fans. I’ve met him on a few occasions in his shop and he could not be more gracious. Recently he helped my daughter pick out a Mother’s day gift for me. Thank you for sharing this tour with us. His home is so personal yet inviting to all.

  12. Elizabeth says...

    Good lord. This is my favorite home tour, ever. How beautiful and calming and respectful and artistic and welcoming and comfortable and regal and serene!

  13. Jules says...

    It’s just a little on the wrong side of shabby for my taste. I respect artistic expression, but this is a bit too “careworn”

    • carmen says...

      I understand where you are coming from. I think the home tour started off more on the “wrong side of shabby” but then as it progressed, it got increasingly better at times. I think that this guy is maybe the only person that could pull this look off. He’s got a very artistic thing going in that house… but… if i tried to pull something off like this, I think it would look like a dilapidated abandoned shack.

  14. Heather says...

    I love love LOVE this home – thank you for sharing!!!

    So much of what I see these days I call future landfill clutter – Target, Ikea, Homegoods furnishings and decor. Drives me nuts. I love the idea of honoring and utilizing the OLD.

    Plus the Cape is my happiest of happy places, so this is lovely.

  15. ANDREA says...

    I agree on nooks! People need them and really gravitate to them! The trend to one huge space in a home often makes that space go unused. I truly believe that people need micro-environments and places to cuddle up in alone.

  16. Lauren says...

    Thank you for sharing this home! Beautiful and fascinating.

  17. Lindsey says...

    Truly and completely wonderful xx

  18. Rb says...

    it’s funny, whenever there’s a house tour that doesn’t begin with a photo of the humans who live in it, I instinctually rapid-scroll down to see them. Otherwise it kind of feels like the home of a ghost.

  19. What a delightfully unusual home tour. Please share more homes with such distinctive flavor! xx

  20. Rebecca says...

    Favorite house tour ever! This is so opposite of my personal style that I’m both confounded by it and in love with it. And those quotes! A gem of a house, a gem of a man.

  21. Lauren says...

    This is one of the coolest home tours I’ve seen on ANY website ever.

  22. Mariah says...

    What an absolutely magical house. Can’t you just taste the salt air when you look at these photos?

  23. Lauren says...

    I am all about nudes in a bathroom! We have a tiny bathroom and the walls are covered with framed art: nude drawings my Aunt had done in class, a watercolor of a sex scene a friend painted, a reclining nude we found on the street, a Playboy centerfold that was left in an old apartment of mine when I moved in. My partner & I always joke our bathroom is the “sexy room”

  24. Aina5339 says...

    Best house out of your “house tour” series yet.

  25. Lizzie says...

    He has such an appreciation for beauty and nature, and his home expresses it perfectly!

  26. Kirstin says...

    I want to be his friend, he sounds like the most fun guy – & what a wonderful house. It’s also wonderful when people tell us they love their partner and are in a happy relationship! It makes me feel like there is hope for the world. (oh I super super want that bed #2 – the first guest room one – with the canopy)

  27. Cynthia says...

    This is my favorite house tour. I love old houses and I love the way he kept restoration to a minimum so the character shines through. We have ghosts or spirits, too, as Revolutionary War and War Between the States battles were fought in our area. Sometimes we hear footsteps on the stairs or going up and down the downstairs hall. We’re not afraid.

  28. Sarah says...

    A good friend forwarded me the link this morning and said “look—two of your favorite things—Cup of Jo and John Derian!” And my daughter sent it to me just now, asking “are you sitting down? are you breathing??” I love John Derian and his homes—I still have the old ELLE DECOR featuring his NYC apartment (several readers wrote in huffy “cancel my subscription!!” letters, appalled at the lack of…I don’t know—glossiness?) This house embodies to me both his artistic vision and an old-school Cape Cod aesthetic that leans towards the simple and almost spartan. I’ve never understood why you’d go on vacation to a sandy spit out in the ocean and then load it up with stuff. Anyway, beautiful—bravo!!

  29. Congratulations on keeping the raw look! I love the idea of I did renovate it!

  30. diana k says...

    Feck, this is gorgeous. It reminds me of a real American Northeast version of the Call Me By Your Name villa. The peeling wallpaper, that old white porcelain sink. The giant flower arrangements with those low ceilings are hilarious.

  31. julia says...

    This man is truly gifted!!!

  32. Karleen says...

    “And does anyone really know how to put on a duvet cover?”

    YES! I’ve perfected what I call the “sandwich bag technique” because it reminds me of putting a sandwich in one of those zipper-less plastic sandwich bags that just folds over. Lay the cover on the bed, face up and scrunch up just the top layer. Attach the top corners to the duvet and then wiggle the cover down and around the duvet like a baggie over a sandwich and secure at the bottom.

    The real secret are duvet clips that cost about $5. They are one of life’s best inventions and help everything stay in one place.

  33. Laurie says...

    Love, love, love! Everything about this house and the story to go with it put such a smile on my face. My husband and I have been gently renovating so I read a lot of design blogs for inspiration but I didn’t realize until I saw this tour how tense other homes make me feel because it’s just too much striving for some strange idea of perfection. John Derian’s home *breathes* and the peace emanates through the photos. Thank you for sharing this!

  34. Ellen says...

    I saw the wooden shingles in the first photo and knew this would be somewhere on Cape Cod <3 What a stunner! There's so much raw goodness here, it's enchanting. Thank you for transporting me back home, even if I now live 500 miles away.

  35. Ann-Marie says...

    Not my (aesthetic) cup of tea in the least, but interesting to read nonetheless! I’d never heard of him!

  36. Reader says...

    My favorite home tour ever. The weathered stairs make me think of the weathered piers–both reveal the relationship between the elements and the passage of time. And I love how the walls show the natural entropy of materials–it’s like living within nature’s process of reclaiming and finding it domestic and cozy (instead of broken or worn). So much of Ptown is under the influence of the tides, and I feel like this house is like an hard-won aftermath of that push-and-pull. What a Ptown house & spirit <3

  37. Chelsea says...

    Love this post! And I’ve gotta say, I’d love to hear more about the ‘spiritual activity’. Let’s talk about ghosts, COJ! Ghostly experiences….almost everyone has one…and it’s summer time, sitting around the campfire time…let’s do it. Please?

    • Second that.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      oh my gosh, we actually have a story about ghosts in the works!

  38. Rachel says...

    I LOVE this house so much but even more than that I love that I could get such a feel for his personality throughout every single answer. Beautiful house, beautiful life, beautiful person! I love how homey and beautiful and worn this house feels. I want to take a nap in that very nook-y nook. Thank you!

  39. J says...

    Where is the ship painting above the glasses from, is t a one of kind antique?

  40. Betsy says...

    I love this! My husband and I just bought an old Victorian in need of some love, and I’ve felt so overwhelmed looking at things that need re-painted and ‘fixed’. John’s house really reframed the way I think of our space. I am going to put off some of the repainting and just enjoy our house more now that I see how well-loved a home with peeling paint can seem.

    Also, I am grateful you posted this, Joanna, as a diversion from the horrors of the news as late. Please, keep ’em coming…

  41. I’ve been mildly obsessed with John for years. Decades. I’ve seen ALL the tours and this is the BEST ONE. Thank you!

  42. Carrie says...

    I’m torn. I understand his means of expression and find it very unique
    and inspiring, yet the house feels cold to me. I am drawn to warm and inviting spaces. Even still, this home is very editorial and photographs beautifully.

    • Yes, this. I actually love the shabby/luxe look of the place (and this man’s love of games totally wins me over), but it seems like it would be freezing cold in there. After so many years of cheap rentals and not much money in my 20s, the last thing I ever want to be is cold in my own house.

  43. Erin says...

    Seeing this lovely old sea captain’s house reminded me of one of my favorite classic movies: “The Ghost & Mrs. Muir.” I convinced my sweet but skeptical husband to watch it with me recently and he loved it and teared up throughout! Highly recommended.

    • Elizabeth says...

      Erin, it reminded me of that house too! I can’t even think of the movie without tearing up :)

    • Ellie says...

      Too funny, I was thinking of that movie the whole time I read this post but couldn’t remember the name!!! Thank you for remembering it for me!

    • Isabelle says...

      Me too! Love the movie :-)

  44. K says...

    Adore this! Beautiful house with so much organic personality. Love John’s responses too.

  45. Summer says...

    I loved this tour and love this style soooooooo much. Provincetown is one of my favorite places to visit, it’s such a cool place with a totally relaxed vibe.

  46. Alyssa says...

    I enjoyed reading this, but I definitely was getting the vibe of “this house is haunted by old sailors”.

    • Yes, exactly! I kept think “Well, this is definitely what New England Gothic looks like”

  47. Emily says...

    Charm Galore! I’m beyond thrilled that you shared this home.

  48. As I was reading this, I had a picture of John in my head and he wasn’t a young guy. I pictured an old rugged sea captain. Also, I’m obsessed with this house.

  49. Jenn says...

    and now i want to go visit my family in Ptown. i love this <3

  50. He seems like he’d be a good role model for a teenager. He really seems to march to the beat of his own drum and appreciate beauty (even if it isn’t what everyone else sees as beautiful). Wish I had an uncle or a neighbor like him when I was 16 and struggling to look a certain way or like certain things. I’d love to be a guest in his house, though I can’t imagine living in a space that delicate and old. This line made me laugh so hard “We don’t use the fireplace in the summer, so my friend Susan gave me some tumbleweed to put in there.” I’m just envisioning grabbing coffee with one of my friends and them saying, “hey, I got a bunch of tumbleweed, do you want to shove some in your fireplace? Might look nice!” Lo and behold, the tumbleweed does look nice in there!

    • Elly says...

      Your imaginary convo about the tumbleweed made me literally LOL. :)

    • Lauren E. says...

      I love this comment. I recently started working for a family that totally marches to the beat of their own drummers, and they’re raising their kids to be completely themselves. It’s really inspiring me to do what feels right, whether that means being creative, wearing something “weird”, or staying in when someone asks me to go out. It’s unbelievably freeing. I agree, I wish I’d had this type of influence as a teenager!!

  51. Oh this one got my heart. As a coastal California transplant from Massachusetts (and a John Derian fan), this home totally resonated. Some of my fondest memories are those spent in North Truro and Provincetown as a young child after my mother’s passing. A best friend’s family stayed there on the weekends and in the Summer months and, by the grace of the universe or whathaveyou, I was often welcomed to enjoy time there with them. We scoped out the beach for sea glass, fished, rolled down sand dunes, and skipped through Provincetown with our eyes on the prize (the local candy shop!). And true to what Derian shared, the light from its wide open sky still gives me life. In a time when I felt so traumatized from the death of my mother, this family and their gift of sharing their life in the most idyllic places I’ve ever had the pleasure of knowing, has made a lifelong impact of hope and light. Thank you for sharing this at, of course, the perfect time. A beautiful home of a very talented (and humorous!) designer.

    • Leah says...

      That is really beautiful, Catherine.

  52. Amber J says...

    This is beautiful. I feel so much peace looking at these pictures and reading his thoughts and feelings about his house. Thank you!

  53. maye says...

    Not everything is my taste, but I however still LOVE LOVE LOVE the house and interior. It shows that you needn’t spend huge money on major renovation and fancy new stuff but that it is worth appreciating what is there – and finding the beauty in old and used surfaces!

    THANKS for the good inspiration!

  54. Maria says...

    I was relieved to see that this house made other people feel anxious. To each his own, but I feel that caring for a house also means taking care of peeling paint and rundown floors. The soul of the house will shine through respectful improvements. That’s a way to make sure that a house has a future not just a past.

    • Alexa says...

      Oh gosh, I personally felt that the paint and wallpaper and floors ARE the character of the house shining through! I found his juxtaposition of old/untouched and new/curated to be strikingly beautiful.

    • Oh, I love the peeling paint and old floors.

    • Jen says...

      I agree with you, and I know that’s not the popular opinion of most of the comments. I loved a lived-in feeling, but if I didn’t have the story to go with it, it would show like a neglected space and actually made me feel very sad (sorry everyone)! I do appreciate his character and artistry however, and believe that art should make people feel all sorts of emotions.

  55. Jaclyn says...

    I love this home your more than any other. Enough with the cookie cutter homes. There is so much character and personality here. The home seems human. I love the comment on seeing it evolve.

  56. Catherine Brown says...

    Such an interesting house. By far my favourite house tour I’ve seen on this site. The aesthetic kinda blew my mind and will make me think differently about future house decoration.

  57. Chloe B says...

    I really enjoyed this house tour. The whimsical house seems so charming and laid-back. What I would reallllly love to see are some additional pictures of the landscaping if at all possible :D

  58. This house is such a gem!! I can instantly picture myself living there. What a dream. Thanks for sharing.

  59. Oh I LOVE this house, and I love his attitude towards it. I’m a big old house fan. My husband and I have just started house shopping for the first time and I can’t tell you how disappointing it is to walk into these gorgeous old homes just to see that someone’s completely renovated the interior to make it uber-modern. Obviously, to each our own, and everyone has the right to do what they want with their own houses, but I would love it if people stopped with the MUST RENOVATE EVERYTHING phase this country seems to be in and just left things as is (within reason).

    On that note, if anyone knows of any houses within commuting distance of NYC that don’t cost a fortune and are NOT renovated to death, pleeeeeease let me know!

    • patricia blaettler says...

      Have you looked in Maplewood, NJ?

    • Charlotte says...

      Oh gosh, renovated to death, that’s the perfect way to describe it Kate! When we were house hunting my heart broke to see every old 1920s-40s bungalow with laminate floors and gutted kitchens. It took us a year to find a house that still had its original doors, floors, and (most of) the kitchen. And then comes the battle with every contractor who wants to sell you cheap cabinets and vinyl windows and doesn’t understand why you’re working so hard to preserve the house as is. People are crazy. Hang in there Mary Kate, your house is out there, waiting to be lovingly cared for by you!

    • Cynthia says...

      We have restored our 1939 colonial Cape Cod rather than modernizing it. It has so many details you can’t find in houses today. We are in one of the early suburbs in Richmond, Va.

    • @ Patricia

      We did look in Maplewood! I loved some of the older homes, though the one big problem area for me everywhere was the KITCHEN. A lot of places had thankfully left the pretty old living and dining rooms and then it seems like everyone used the same contractors to redo their kitchens into these white cabinet, marble countertop modern soulless things — drove me nuts. Now when I look at listings I’m almost immediately passing over anything that mentions a kitchen renovation, haha.

    • Jo says...

      “white cabinet, marble countertop modern soulless things” -> you’ve perfectly articulated what I’ve been struggling with.

      our friends dont get why we dont want to move into big suburbian houses with cookie-cutter massive kitchens.. I am happy for them. But I feel no “connection” to those homes. I’ve been saying I want a small, old house that has some character and all I get is crickets. Help!

  60. Ashley Nodar says...

    His garden is featured in the book Gardenista and is absolutely stunning, too!

    • april says...

      I love that book and his garden!

  61. Maggie says...

    I love when people do exactly what they want with their home, instead of trying to make it look how they think it’s “supposed to”! But after years of living in cheap(ish), ancient apartments in NYC and Philly, the peeling paint and water damage here are giving me major anxiety…

  62. Exactly what I envisioned his house to look like. Did not disappoint!

  63. Emma Bee says...

    The New Englander in me shivers at the thought of the long winter in that place! It would be fantastic in the summer though.

  64. Meg says...

    I love P-town!! but, dude, you gotta paint those walls! it kind of creeps me out. My in-laws live in a 400 year old home in new england that always needs painting. Just do it.

    • I personally love it the way it is!

  65. This is my dream home!! I could tell right from the first photo that this was going to be full of seaside new england loveliness.

    Also, “He’s 10 boyfriends in one” might be the sweetest description I think I’ve ever heard <3

  66. Liz says...

    I feel so out of the loop because I don’t know who this guy is.

    Also my mom-brain is really anxious looking at all of the chipping paint everywhere :(

    • Lia says...

      Same…just kept thinking, BUT WHAT ABOUT THE LEAD?!?!?!?!

  67. Kelly says...

    I try to cultivate such moments of curiosity in my otherwise builder basic midrise. My home reads modern, but I’m hiding nature finds, tiny antiques, and my own miniature paintings everywhere for the curious.

    My dear friend gives a bag full of tiny gifts with assignments on them as a present. Yesterday, per her instruction, I took a nature walk in my city and foraged a bouquet, then took a bath with the mustard soak she gave me. I love seeing things simply gathered, and that sense of discovery rather than aspiration is something I’m working towards.

    • Kim says...

      I love your friend’s gifts! Stealing!

    • Laura says...

      Kelly, Your post is so beautifully written! Please give more details about your friend’s “gifts with assignments.” I love this idea!

  68. Kim G says...

    This was a marvelous treasure to read.

  69. Cynthia says...

    This is my favorite house tour as I love old homes, and I love the way he did as little restoration as possible. We have ghosts too, as there were Revolutionary War battles and War Between the States battles in our area. Sometimes it sounds like somone is coming upstairs or walking up and down the downstairs hall wearing workboots. I’m not afraid.

    • Laura says...

      Amazing!

      I’d love to hear more about his experiences with the spirits in his home. That reference to more activity during renovation is so interesting!

  70. Heidi says...

    I have always loved John Derian’s curious style. If I lived close, I’d, politely as possible, invite myself over with homemade pie and hope to hear some really amazing stories. The breakfast nook and bathroom are so dreamy.

  71. Fernanda says...

    John, your house is so beautiful!

  72. JB says...

    My husband and I just bought a 150 year old house and I’m drawing a lot of inspiration from this – especially love the little accent tables and things that are chipped and scuffed. Not everything has to be perfect – give old things new life! Love it.

  73. Trisha says...

    omg this is by far my favorite house. I am one of those people that likes to keep everything original. peeling paint, chipped floors. I like the house to have some character. I would love to spend the night here! just beautiful.

  74. Ali says...

    Thank you for sharing perspectives from people in the LGBTQ community. I’d appreciate seeing more in the future. Thanks.

  75. Kim says...

    I love this and want All The Rugs!

  76. I really enjoyed this house tour! The mix of the old and new was so interesting and enjoyable! I especially liked the photo of John at the end. I always love your house tours!!

  77. I’m new to the northeast, and just visited Provincetown last weekend. Totally fell in love, and am nearly as in love with this home. Thank you for sharing such a historic, rustic tour! It’s wonderful to see amongst the typical shiny and new homes.

  78. Inês says...

    Even though it’s not my style and I don’t understand the concept, I loved reading this.

  79. Laura C. says...

    This is by far my absolute favourite home tour ever. I often tell my husband that I was born in the wrong age. Gosh, that’s a home that really tells me something.
    We are moving next month, we found a flat already, and we had seen new flats but all of them were plain and they didn’t give me a feeling of home. The one I am going in is old, from 1980’s, but there is something there that tells me “this is a home”.
    Compliments John Derian, I love your home and your lifestyle!

    • Mila says...

      Omg, I was born in 1980, I don’t feel old!

  80. Vanessa Rae says...

    How refreshing! A slow savour and then put in in your pocket for a pick-me-up kind of home. Thanks for sharing xx

  81. What a fascinating home! Also, the purple and blue speckled floors are really cool :)

  82. Guys. WOWOWOWOWOWOW.

    Seaside magic. Just give me a few cable-knit sweaters and a pack of dogs and I’ll move right in.

    I can tell I’m going to be revisiting this tour for many, MANY years to come.

  83. Midge says...

    Man, I love people who know who they are. So cool.

  84. Milou says...

    This was such a nice bon-bon in a hard week. I live down the street from the NY stores and I always leave delighted – such a great eye! Thank you!

  85. Jodi says...

    The photo of guest bedroom no. 2 looks like it has a floating bed! Also, I think we might be twins separated at birth.

  86. Daynna says...

    I love him. I love his house. I love his style. I love everything about this!

  87. Jenny says...

    Wow! Such an interesting and inspiring read. This guy has got oodles and oodles of style. This definitely is not my asthetic, but his home is truly art and it was fascinating to explore just a piece. I’m so intrigued.

    This tour makes me want to visit a museum, hike, read and explore the depths of my personal artistic soul to curate my abode. Thank you for the brief escape from current events without totally numbing my brain (like reality TV can do).

  88. I spent so many summers walking up and down Commercial Street and the funny side streets in P-Town, always wondering what the inside of some of these houses looked like! John Derian’s house totally makes sense.

  89. Kate says...

    That he talked to the house to reassure it when it was being renovated… I LOVE that! Reminds me of my grandparents’ old house on Cape Cod where I spent my childhood summers.

  90. Kara says...

    Celebrity is the best game to play with a group of friends!

    I would love to wander around this house, but particularly when I was younger. It feels like the setting of a great book. (But also definitely a little haunted.)

  91. sera says...

    I love this house! We’re renovating ours but most of the history had already been destroyed by previous owners. I love that you have the old wallpaper!

  92. Olivia says...

    This might sound like a backhanded compliment, but honestly it’s a compliment – I love how on CoJ, there are almost never negative comments on home tours. Of course, no one style will ever be to everyone’s fancy – but these readers are always respectful that this is someone’s home. I don’t think this happens anywhere else on the internet! Bravo, fellow readers ??

    And also, John seems like a ton of fun and has inspired me to play more games!

    • Kelly says...

      I’ve been wondering about that lately. Maybe this makes me pessimistic (maybe I’m a product of our culture lately — the first lady just wore a jacket proclaiming that she doesn’t care!), but it seems too good to be true. Comments obviously go through some sort of moderating before they’re posted, does this mean that only positive, constructive and polite comments are posted? Are we shielded from dissenters and trolls?

      If so, I guess I’m okay with that. This place makes me hopeful and happy.

    • Joanna Goddard says...

      i am happy to answer that question! we approve the overwhelming majority of comments. we only delete spam comments and overly harsh comments (which are few and far between). we really love this community. thank you so much for being here. xoxo

  93. breathtakingly beautiful …
    I love every absolutely everything in this home :)

    thanks so much Joanna and team

  94. Sally says...

    Love this house and John sounds fun to be friends with! I’d like to know where the red rugs are from. Also, agree with the commentors on the chipping paint – that would make me nervous:/

  95. Elizabeth R. says...

    When I was in NYC in the fall, I spent a magical afternoon at John Derian. They were setting up some beautiful items for the holidays, and John happened to be there. He is so talented and he was so kind. His book is amazing, as his store. I bought a few things while I was there; and he was kind and generous and lovely, helping me out with the shipping and getting enthused at my purchases. His store(s) are magical and very me. His house is lovely and right up my alley. I am glad he has found love with a great man who appreciates him.

  96. cnp013 says...

    The house is beautiful but after working in public health I couldn’t help noticing the chipping lead paint.

  97. Liz says...

    Echoing everyone else here, but I still felt a need to comment. Thank you for this! So refreshing and made me smile. I love his approach. He seems so cool and so down to earth at the same time.

  98. Heather says...

    I’m really going to need more details on the “windstorm of spiritual activity.” Please tell us everything.

    • Tara says...

      Oh my gosh. Yes, please!

    • Julia says...

      Yes yes!

    • Karen says...

      he left me guessing! spill, john!

  99. Carter says...

    John…what a fun surprise to see you on Cup of Jo! If you read this, what you said about Stephen was the sweetest! Loved seeing more of the p-town house. xo

  100. jac says...

    I love every INCH of this house. I read this slowwwlllyyy all day to savor it. : )

  101. Gorgeous! I love letting old houses just be – that loved and lived in patina can never be replicated. I need some clients that agree with me on this!

    The Parisian nude in the bathroom is stunning. I would love another post with John about antiquing and where to find these amazing old objects.

    • Regina says...

      Second the request for antiquing tips! And love this entire post.

    • Laura says...

      Another vote for an antiquing post!

  102. Katie says...

    When can I visit? Loved this home tour!

  103. Ashley says...

    If you added an old wedding cake, I’d believe Miss Havisham lived there. I’d personally go crazy living in this space, but man I really want to wander and look at all the interesting collections. What a fun home tour.

    • Nadine Hughey says...

      Absolutely my favorite tour, reminds me of Victoria magazine – so fun to visit, but then I’d go home & clean like the devil. Hope that isn’t offensive, I’d also like to be friends with John!

    • Kelly says...

      Mary Oliver used to live in Provincetown. I like to imagine she lived in a tiny rustic house that looked something like this.

  104. Angie says...

    That was one of the most fun house tours I’ve seen in a while.

  105. Carol Adams says...

    I can’t get enough of John Derian. He has post wonderful stories on Instagram . BTW I stopped buying Matteo bedding, the zippers always break on the duvet covers.

  106. Abbie says...

    Growing up in Massachusetts, with almost exclusively gay friends, his house feels so like home to me. Thank you for a nostalgic treat.

  107. Bec says...

    Such a beautiful home, love it all. Wish we were friends so I could go hang out there and play bananagrans. Also I agree about putting clothes away in hotels. It’s nice to make it your little home even for a short time.

  108. Kelly P says...

    Gosh, I like him. This house isn’t really my style, but it is so homey and inviting. I think I would love to be a guest there and hang with John Derian and his friends. Also – nudes in the bathroom! Yes!

  109. Shannon says...

    What a magical home. Thank you for sharing!

  110. Julie Rosene says...

    I really love this house tour. This house has character, history, charm, warmth.
    I wish I were friends with John, it seems like they have fun dinner parties!

  111. Kelly says...

    Love love this tour!

  112. Christina says...

    What a gorgeous, cozy home. That stairwell! The peeling wallpaper. I can imagine some dreamy Sunday mornings.

  113. Jill says...

    My favorite home tour! I am the wrong age to like mid century, have never liked modern, so this is right up my alley. I love that they collect items with history and love, and not what is trendy this year. I bet their dinners and game nights are a blast. I vote for more home tours like this one!

  114. Emmie says...

    The tumbleweed in the fireplace makes me want to cry with excitement. Incredible.

  115. Christine Hart says...

    Great tour. Thanks Cup of Jo and John Derian.

  116. Samantha says...

    Provincetown has the most charming houses. I swear each one is better than the last!

  117. Alexa says...

    Favorite home tour EVER. I wanna live there, and I wanna be his friend.

    • Laura C. says...

      Same. Same.

  118. Inês says...

    My god, this is heaven :)

  119. Rose says...

    My favorite house tour yet. I love love love this one.

  120. julie says...

    This is insanely wonderful to both look at and read. The most refreshing home tour I have seen in a looooooong time.

    • Sabrina Izaguirre says...

      You are so right! I read it several times just to savor each and every word…what a great way to kick off summer! Loved this home tour!!!

    • Katie says...

      I agree. I almost didn’t click on it because I thought – meh, another home tour. I loved every single thing.

  121. Elizabeth says...

    Love John Derian. My favorite home tour! I love seeing someone really in communion with their house.

  122. Amy says...

    Now THIS is a home I love. While I can appreciate the mid century look that is so popular these days, I could see myself feeling cozy here :) And….I would bring croissants to go with his famous eggs for breakfast!

  123. Cynthia says...

    Wow. I feel like I’ve brushed up against royalty. I have admired his creativity for so many years and have collected at least a dozen of his creations in my home. Only John Derian could juxtapose the truly shabby with the chic and pull off such stunning interest and beauty and whimsey. What a treat!

  124. Mary Beth says...

    I completely agree with John, nudes in the bathroom make sense. These photos convey the spirit of a home that is full of stories – I love it.

  125. MB says...

    Flaking paint=always vacuuming. I’m romantic enough to walk barefoot as much as possible. Not romantic enough to be willing to give up clean feet.

    • Sara says...

      Yes! Also I am 99.99% sure that the flaking paint is lead paint. Lead exposure is serious – especially if kids are ever around.

    • Sandra says...

      Yes, as soon as I saw the peeling paint all I could think about was lead exposure. Maybe once my son is grown I will be able to enjoy the romance of older homes again. But I did love this home tour!

    • Kelly Hartman says...

      hahaha. i love looking at these pictures and am so happy someone is willing to keep the character in their old home…but I own an old and charming cabin in Wisconsin…not quite as old as this one…and I’ve figured out that old and charming means suuuper hard to keep clean…and I don’t have any peeling paint, just drafty windows and gaps in the floor and all kinds of other quirks!

  126. Katie says...

    I was definitely picturing a very sweet, old man as the homeowner while reading this!

    • Laura C. says...

      Me too!

  127. Lauren says...

    OMG, love! How many kids would like Powell and Pressburger? Clearly, good taste from an early age. :)