These 5 Homes Are Filled With Loved Items—It Makes All the Difference

Interiors & Decor

These 5 Homes Are Filled With Loved Items—It Makes All the Difference | Wit & Delight
Photo by Wing Ho for Cup of Jo

The most common words people use to describe our house after visiting are: warm and cozy. 

Those words were not exactly on my design brief when making decor decisions for this home. What I realized is that this feedback was about how it felt to BE in our space—not a description of the design elements in our home. 

The power of a home, or any space for that matter, is how it makes us FEEL. It’s not just about the wallpaper design and the furniture pieces, although those are important too! When thinking about how to create a space that feels like home, I am almost always focusing on the elements that bring happiness, inspiration, and comfort. The most authentic way for any of us to achieve this is to follow our heart’s delights. The things we love somehow have a way of looking “right” together, even if they wouldn’t necessarily make sense on a mood board. 

I wanted to pull together a short (but by no means exhaustive) list of homes that exude the passions and personalities of the people who live there; homes that showcase loved items around every corner.

By looking at their homes, you get an immediate sense of their style, their tastes, and how they like to spend their downtime. I hope browsing through these homes inspires you to bring more loved items into your own home, and reap the benefits of that cozy, comforting feeling. 

For more on the topic of filling your life and home with what you love, read our February theme blog post.

1. Wendy and David Coggins

These 5 Homes Are Filled With Loved Items—It Makes All the Difference | Wit & Delight
Photo by Wing Ho for Cup of Jo

This home was the first that came to mind when I was brainstorming this list. It’s filled with a lifetime’s worth of experiences, mementos displayed like tiny trophies of adventure and enjoyment. I love this quote from Wendy in the Cup of Jo article linked below: “When friends come over, they say, It’s so full, how can you clean it? But it’s a very personal house. It’s layered because it has been done over time. To someone else it might look like a mess, but I would tell Marie Kondo, everything here sparks joy.”

Photo by Wing Ho for Cup of Jo

2. Amanda Jane Jones

These 5 Homes Are Filled With Loved Items—It Makes All the Difference | Wit & Delight
Photo by Alpha Smoot for Domino

On the opposite end of the spectrum from the above, we have the Jones family home. Their meticulous documentation of memories and phases of life are displayed not only in artful photography but also in objects of delight scattered throughout the space with intention. 

Photo by Alpha Smoot for Domino

3. Shavonda Gardner

Living room with black walls and ceiling, botanical wallpaper on one wall, white fireplace, cream rug, teal sofa, round wood coffee table, velvet side chair, and two patterned ottomans.
Photo via @sgardnerstyle

When I see Shavonda’s home, I notice all the design choices made through her lens alone. I love how her color selections and styling techniques reflect the way she prefers to spend her time. These choices are reflected in the energy and warmth of the kitchen, the cozy comfort of the living room, and the restful feeling of the main bedroom. It’s a family’s home and it’s beautiful.

Photo via @sgardnerstyle

4. Melissa Parks

Living room with light blue walls, white ceiling, striped blue sofa, and antique furniture and decor throughout.
Photo via @megillicutti

I love how Melissa has been leaning into the “IDGAF” stage of her design career. It’s daring and bold with the kind of confidence that comes from experience and truly doing what she pleases. Let us all take notes. 

Photo via @megillicutti

5. Kelly Mindell – Studio DIY

These 5 Homes Are Filled With Loved Items—It Makes All the Difference | Wit & Delight
Photos by Jeff Mindell for Studio DIY

The Mindell family has always embraced color, but their new Southwest home takes on saturated hues in a way that doesn’t mimic any other designer out there. I love to see Kelly’s evolution of style come to life in new ways that continue to be a reflection of her unique POV. 

Photos by Jeff Mindell for Studio DIY

BY Kate Arends - February 8, 2023

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February 8, 2023 10:37 am

Yasssssss!!!! These are soooooo gooood! I’m obsessed with all of these homes. Kelly’s has really been slaying me. And thanks for including me. So honored.

February 13, 2023 1:32 am

I absolutely agree! The love and warmth that comes from personalizing a home with sentimental items can truly transform a house into a home. It’s amazing to see how these 5 homes have been brought to life with the special touches of their owners. It just goes to show that the smallest details can have a huge impact on creating a cozy and inviting atmosphere. Thanks for sharing these inspiring examples!

March 14, 2023 8:49 pm

Isn’t it the idea of having a home? Make it a place that could easily be recognized as very much “you”….Get out your treasures and show them off…JMO

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Thank you for being here. For being open to enjoying life’s simple pleasures and looking inward to understand yourself, your neighbors, and your fellow humans! I’m looking forward to chatting with you.

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