Saturday, October 30, 2010

Let's talk drama: Tara's warm and magical home in D.C.

Hello again my friends! How are you today? Since candy-night is right around the corner, I thought we'd indulge in a little candy today. Eye-candy, that is. :) We're going to visit newlyweds Tara and Daniel in their tastefully done up condo in D.C. "Tara" means star in hindi....if you visit her blog, you'll see those stars twinkling in her eyes. There's a warm, intelligent look about her, which is confirmed once you get to know her better, so be sure to linger on and read her posts as well (after the home-tour tho'!). Her home is like an extension of her---fun and fresh and alive! There are many things about her home that reached out and grabbed me, the use of color, the level of comfort, but what I love about it most is that it was so well-thought out. There isn't an inch of wasted space, every room has it's own story and yet the whole home blends seamlessly together. It is coherent and oh-so-stylish. And it's a home that is lived-in and loved.....

I usually handle the write-up for home tours, but I love how nicely Tara articulates her thoughts on her home. Because I wouldn't be able to put it across any better (and because I'm lazy!!!) I'm going to let her do most of the talking here.... so let's grab that cup of Earl Grey and settle down to be i.n.s.p.i.r.e.d. Take it away Tara........

"I live in a fairly modest-sized condo in a suburb of D.C., with three smelly boys: Daniel, Rufus and Malcolm (my husband, a pug, and a Himalayan cat, respectively.) So, of course, I gave up trying to keep a perfect house a long time ago. Instead, I try to embrace a system of organized chaos:  casually laid-out pockets of carefully curated things that we absolutely love. Limited space, as well as our love of home decor projects and regular antique store runs also means that our home is in a constant state of flux, in terms of decor. Also, travel is something very close to our hearts, and I suppose that shows when you look around our place- we have little knick-knacks from all over the world, from India to Ireland and everywhere inbetween."

This is the entry to the condo. Tara says
"It's a teensy, narrow space, occupied only by a Ghost chair that takes up no visual space while providing extra seating when we have company, and by a console table that we use as a bar, a bookshelf, a china cabinet and a place to display our tchotchkes. Oh and the kids curl up on the shelf for their afternoon nap, as you can see. Displayed in the frames are the guest tree from our wedding, and an antique political map of Calcutta."

I've been seeing that ghost chair for a long time now--it's been Tara's preferred spot for taking pictures!! If you're even remotely interested in fashion, you really have to go check out her blog--she puts together the most fun outfits. This is one stylish gal, she knows her mind and she (and her home) look perfectly put-together.

Her gorgeous living room. That rug! Swoon!

Tara, on her living room:
"The living room: This is the most important room in our home, as far as we're concerned, because we actually live in here. We entertain friends in here, have movie night and game night in here, and, at the end of the night, we curl up on our used and abused couch with the cat and the dog. We have slipcovers on the couch, and the armchair's leather, because it needs to withstand shedding, drooling and muddy paws, daily. The rug is a Turkish kilim, and all the portraits and paintings on the wall are done either by me or by close friends. The color on the walls is "Poised Taupe" by Sherwin Williams- a controversial choice, but one that we're very happy with- it makes the entire space feel like a warm hug."

 "Poised Taupe" makes a wonderful backdrop for slipcovered couches, don't you think? Love her gallery wall and the splash of yellow. I love that her home doesn't feel contrived--its practical and comfortable and yet it doesn't compromise on style! I think I like warm-hug! :)

Some details from around the living room.

Her balcony:
"Our tiny slice of the "outdoors"- haha. But really, we love this little area. We have a teeny-tiny container garden (not pictured), some flower boxes where we rotate seasonal flowers, and a little garden furniture where we relax with drinks and a hookah, while watching the leaves turn colors in the fall."
I love those fairy-lights! And Rufus appears to be having a pretty good time at home--that's one pampered pup! If you click back to her blog here, you can see the balcony in daylight.

The bedroom....
She says..
"This is supposed to be our tranquil oasis. The walls and drapes are in a serene, refreshing shade of minty blue, and the ceiling is painted a barely-there shade of pink for added interest. We moved our Persian rug to this room when we got the kilim in the living room, and it  works great with the color palette here. We're lucky enough to have huge, east-exposed windows in both bedrooms, and in this particular room, we tried to capitalize on all that light by bringing in mirrored bedside tables and an antique gilt mirror that has special emotional significance to us. In one corner of this room is Daniel's workspace. Getting a corner-model desk helped keep the bedroom a bedroom instead, since it takes up so little visual space."
Where she blogs from. I love the little brass bankura ponies on her table!

A closer look at her table top.

The antique gilded mirror she spoke of. You can see part of the kitchen reflected in it!

Her kitchen.
"Small and functional, our kitchen is still fitted with all the contractor-grade appliances it came with. If we decide we're going to spend another five years or so in this house, then we'll start upgrading things and making it more user-friendly. For now, it's a cozy space with pale yellow walls, and a breakfast bar for Malcolm the cat to sit on while we cook."

The dining room. I love those bold stripes of color--she really knows how to bring on the drama don't you think?

"The dining area is actually an extension of the living room, since we have and open-plan home. We painted the wall in taupe and gold stripes, since there are few things I love more than a dramatic dining room. On the wall are two original, signed etchings of San Francisco scenes by Alec Stern that we stumbled upon on one of our antique hunts. The oval table is surrounded by mismatched mid-century modern and traditional dining chairs. Remnants of my wedding bouquet, along with springs of eucalyptus are in a glass jar, surrounded by more glass jars (empty pasta sauce jars, jam jars, you name it) filled with candle wax, to set the mood for a romantic dinner :)"

Even her bath is stylish:
"The silver tray and silver glasses that house our balms and bathroom doodads on the vanity were part of a sterling silver set that was a wedding gift from my parents- a family heirloom. The wooden owl was a present from Daniel from his trip to Thailand, and is very near to my heart."

The guest room:
"This was once our primary bedroom. The sunny yellow instantly puts you in a warm, happy mood when you wake up in here. The canopy bed was a graduation present from my mom, and the tattered blanket is something I've had since college, but just can't get rid of because I'm so attached to it!  The convex gilt mirror above the bed is another antique store find, and the silk wing-back chair is another sentimental piece from my college days. The console-turned desk by the window is my space- it's got some sentimental art pieces, my books, color pencils, and an origami heart that Daniel made me when we first started dating."

Love those sharpened pencils against the sunny yellow walls! also note said origami heart. Aawwwwwwwww... :)

That corner looks so inviting! I think I need to add a throw to my chair now....

I love that I'm winding up this week with a tour of this charming home......those warm sunny yellows have left me with a warm fuzzy feeling and loads of inspiration. Didn't this home bring a smile to your face? You can catch up with Tara on her blog here. Happy browsing!!!

Tara, thank you for inviting us in..... :) Loved doing the home-tour!

All pictures courtesy of and copyrighted to Tara Bannerji Hoang.


  1. WoW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The living room and the bedroom are pure exctasy, I love them! <3
    I like your blog, I hope you're going to take the time to visit mine - I have a feeling you'll like it :)) Can't wait to hear from you and of course feel free to follow me anytime (if you like my blog of course :))! <3

  2. Another gorgeous warm home! Love the dinning room, the pictures on the wall and also the guest room!

  3. My goodness! I am a huge fan of Tara, and this is awesome to see her home! Tara, if you're reading this, I had NO IDEA you were so interior-design savvy! If I had known, I would've bugged you A LOT more for tips when I moved out, hahaha! I love the bedroom's serene color palette, and the living room is GORGEOUS. I seriously wish I lived there! And the bold stripes in the kitchen? Yeah. I love it all! And looking at all the little knick-knacks displayed around was so cool. I like how each thing has a story and everything seems to be placed there with a purpose -- it never looks cluttered!

  4. I really like Tara's bedroom colors, but the dining room stripes are fabulous and I love the guest furniture.

  5. Absoluely beautiful!! I love all the rooms..the colours on the wall..the frames.. bed spreads..rugs..plants..and plant holders as well..jam jar candles..the pug!!! It is a picture perfect home!!!!!

  6. :) I have to say her jars of candles are very enticing! And I love that her wedding bouquet lives on----I love to save my anniversary roses each year! :)

    @Amy, it's nice to meet you, and I will forward her all these comments, so I'm sure she'll get to read each one! Thanks for dropping by and commenting.. :)

  7. The dining room is my fav. Thanks for sharing her home with us.

  8. Absolutely gorgeous, G!:) I am busy with a fly wedding, but I have to get back here and look at this post properly! I loved the bedroom and its tranquil theme...great post!


  9. Incredibly gorgeous and Oh! the colors used. Beautiful home Tara!

  10. amazing home the details.thanks gagan for featuring this home.

  11. Simply divine! The boots under the ghost chair stole my heart.

  12. Any chance u can provide the source of the Kilim rug and the paint color???Thanks in advance.

  13. paint color in the dining room...

  14. @Anon, I'll pass your comments on as well...check back tmrw for the response.

  15. Beautiful home tour!...loved her bedroom the most!..Well done Tara :)...TFS Gagan :)

  16. GB...thanks for introducing me to Tara's home & Tara. Her home is stunning...i don't have any favs here cos I love each of her rooms.

  17. Hi Everyone, and thank you for the wonderfully kind comments. As to the paint in the dining room walls, there are 3 paints used:
    1. Sherwin Williams temperate taupe (pale taupe on ceilings and stripes)
    2. SW poised taupe (stripes and living room walls)
    3. Ralph Lauren Regent metallic Lush Brown.
    The kilim rug was bought off I don't see that particular rug online anymore, but I do see other beautiful ones that are similar.
    Hope this helped :)

  18. absolutely love love love all those picture frames. so pretty! I am definitely inspired.

  19. I really love this blog but where do I get an email link to it?


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