HOME STYLING PROJECT: How we styled an entire 1950s Georgian Home


We are hard at work on a dream project.

The dream project is this: a full home interior design plan for a beautiful home in Oklahoma City, just up the road from the shop in Tulsa.

The home, a 1950s Georgian dwelling, is owned by Stephanie and her lovely husband, Ryan.

“Ashley, I am so glad we are hiring Retro Den to decorate our home,” Stephanie said. “I love how you all care about people, and I love how you make spaces that are meaningful and that give energy to the lives being led in those spaces and homes.”

We did some Instagram story highlights here about the project.

We love saying it: those who wake up in purposeful and lovely spaces, go out into the world and are better people.

Steph and Ryan have two kiddos, laborious jobs, and big hearts. We couldn’t be prouder to help support the already beautiful lives they live.

We are breaking our plans into three phases. Phase 1 focuses on four rooms: the downstairs living room and eat-in kitchen, as well as the upstairs living space and playroom.

Starting from Scratch and Making a Meaningful Space

Steph and Ryan’s recent years were a whirlwind of wrapping up medical residency, moving to Oklahoma and starting a family.

They are freshly moved into their new-to-them house and need a larger number of furnishings than many of our home-styling clients.

We often take a lot of cues from what people already own in the way of furniture and decorations, but while they have a few family heirlooms and a few knick-knacks, we really are starting from scratch—a blank canvas.

To start, we wanted to delve into this couple’s hopes, dreams, and preferences. We want this home to reflect them, not just be pretty.

We began by pouring our secret sauce on them—our very own home survey, which takes an inventory of a person’s style as well as how they use their space currently, and how they want to use their space in the future. (Want to see the survey? You can download it yourself!)

We also asked Stephanie and Ryan to create a mood board to help us better learn about them—their likes and dislikes.

Too, we created a mood board of things we thought they would really like, as well as photos that represented a wide range of styles, so that we could go through those images with them and gauge their responses.

This is their home as it sits right now (the before):

Before: Downstairs living room.

Before: Downstairs living room.

Before: Downstairs living room leading into the eat-in kitchen.

Before: Downstairs living room leading into the eat-in kitchen.

Before: Downstairs eat-in kitchen.

Before: Downstairs eat-in kitchen.

Before: Downstairs eat-in kitchen.

Before: Downstairs eat-in kitchen.

Before: Upstairs living room.

Before: Upstairs living room.

Before: Upstairs play area

Before: Upstairs play area

Narrowing Down the Design

After touring and measuring the home, as well as asking Stephanie and Ryan lots of questions and reviewing colors, art, and furniture styles, we put together a plan.

Over ice cream and champagne, we offered up mood boards with all the grounding furniture pieces Team Retro Den plans to use in each room, as well as the colors and special details we want in each space.

We wanted approval on the large items, art pieces, and overall concept and feel for each room. We offered options, and Stephanie and Ryan quickly decided on which sofa, which rug, and more. We were nailing down details like crazy people!

Here are the design boards we presented to Stephanie and Ryan:

tulsa living room interior design
Tulsa Kitchen interior design
Tulsa family room interior design
Tulsa playroom interior design

The mood boards are full of color. Plenty of beautiful Gus* Modern Furniture pieces, vintage furniture and rugs, and handmade items by House Sparrow Fine Nesting, Jake Fowler, Katherine Hair, Craig Proper Home, Owl and Drum, and Very Good Handyman.

Local Sources for a meaningful home

Something we LOVE about Stephanie and Ryan is their commitment to supporting local makers and small businesses in the design of their home.

They chose us at Retro Den to help them with their home because sourcing locally is a key tenant in our approach to home decorating.

And we cannot tell you how much meaning and beauty this approach is going to bring to the spaces in this home already rich with history and tradition—a house curated with items made by passionate people, featuring vintage pieces steeped in history, and arranged by two super-nice ladies named Ashley.

Magic is our word for this project. It’s going to be magical when this home becomes a place where sweet family moments run rampant and every day will start on a beautiful, purposeful background.

Cheers to this project. We eager to share more with you.

One Gus* Sofa, Three Ways: Bohemian, Moody Modern, and Plant Lady Style

The Spencer Sofa From Gus* Modern: Proof That Basic Does Not Equal Boring

The Spencer Sofa from Gus* Modern is live, living proof that basic absolutely does not have to equal boring. With lean, classic lines and beautiful, hard-working upholstery, this piece from the Gus* line is ready to handle anything you throw its way—including your personal, unique, beautiful style that is all your own.

How to Style A Sofa That Fits You Perfectly

With just a few key pieces and a thoughtful touch here and there, a classic like The Spencer can take on a totally different look that is suited exactly to you, your personality, and your style.

We decided to have a little fun with this idea. So, for your viewing pleasure, is The Spencer Sofa from Gus* Modern, styled in three, gotta-have-it-now ways: Bohemian style, Moody Modern, and decor that any plant lady would love.

Show Us Your Boho: Gus Modern Does Bohemian Style

Bohemian Gus Modern Sofa Living Room Furniture Decor Ideas Tulsa Oklahoma

Check out how The Spencer grounds this classic boho look of layered textiles, warm woods, brass, and woven rattan accents. Bravo, Spencer!

Bohemian Sofa Gus Modern Living Room Furniture Decor Ideas Tulsa Oklahoma
Tulsa Oklahoma Bohemian Sofa Gus Modern Living Room Furniture Decor Ideas

Mad Men: Gus Modern Does Moody Modern Style

Gus Modern Tulsa Oklahoma Living Room Furniture Decor How To Style Couch

Add a few notable midcentury pieces and deep hues and The Spencer takes on a whole new life as the centerpiece of a dramatic, modern space.

How To Style Couch Gus Modern Tulsa Oklahoma Living Room Furniture Decor
Moody Modern Style Couch Gus Modern Tulsa Oklahoma Living Room Furniture Decor
Living Room Furniture Decor Moody Modern Style Couch Gus Modern Tulsa Oklahoma

Attention, Plant Moms: Gus Modern Does Plant Lady Style

Plant Lady Style Houseplants Tulsa Oklahoma Living Room Furniture Decor Gus Modern

Yes, really. The Spencer does it again. Throw all your favorite houseplants in the mix, combine with plenty of macrame, warm woods, and textiles that pop, and you have a haven where any plant mom would love to store her watering can.

Gus Modern Plant Lady Style Houseplants Tulsa Oklahoma Living Room Furniture Decor
Tulsa Oklahoma Gus Modern Plant Lady Style Houseplants Living Room Furniture Decor
Gus Modern Tulsa Oklahoma Plant Lady Boho Living Room Furniture Decor

We would love to know how you would style a classic like The Spencer. Let us know in the comments! And definitely give your unique style a name. It’s the most fun, for you AND for us.

DEAR DIARY: Things We Love About Gus* Modern

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Retro Den is a proud retailer of Gus* Modern furniture.

So proud, in fact, that we made a list of 24 reasons in our diary about it (and dotted all our i’s with hearts):

  1. Gus* is a furniture design and manufacturing company based in Toronto—available right here in our storefront in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Hey, anything we can do to save you from a couple thousand miles’ worth of wandering in search of superior furnishings is worth it to us.

  2. Gus* makes beautiful, high quality pieces using responsible green practices. Very important to us #plantmoms.

  3. Gus* is fresh and new for your home, inspired by modern design from decades past.

  4. When you shop Gus*, you can support small business in your community AND score beautiful, high quality furnishings, all at the same time.

  5. Gus* furniture complements the aesthetic and history of vintage pieces, resulting in the optimal balance of old and new. We aren’t fans of hard-and-fast design rules, but we stick hard-and-fast to this one.

  6. Believe it: Industrial Modern can look clean and cozy. The Gus* Atwood sofa, with its tufted back and tapered walnut legs that bring about a tailored, sophisticated feel, can get you there.

  7. Gus* offers furnishings ranging from sofas and sleepers to workspace and lighting. There’s something for everyone.

  8. Feel the need to add a crisp, clean feel to a scene? This beautiful, plush Gus* Margot sofa in blue velvet is our star for polished spaces.

  9. We have a selection of floor models for you to see and a catalogue of the full line of Gus* Modern all available to order from our shop—and we pay the shipping to the store. It’s thrilling to us to be able to do that.

  10. All upholstered pieces can be custom ordered in a range of delicious fabrics and leathers, each of which you will want to rub on your face until you fall into a deep, sweet slumber.

  11. Want a Rustic Modern look for your office? There’s a Gus* for that.

  12. If you don't mix old and new, your home can look one dimensional. By mixing in vintage, you inject personality and character. The new pieces from our line of Gus* will add a shine and crispness to the vintage pieces, and the vintage pieces will bring soul and unity to your space. #soul #unity #yes

  13. You can use Gus* to build a Bohemian Modern look for your favorite space.

  14. Gus* can give you the comfort of a large sectional while still offering a smaller, lighter footprint—thus opening up your favorite space. #winning

  15. This: The classic, mid-century modern inspired Gus* Modern Adelaide sofa in velvet rust. Enough said.

  16. Colorful, playful bohemian elements (wicker, rattan, wall weavings) contrast nicely with the modern Gus* Jane sofa. Trust.

  17. Our Gus* Atwood sofa floor model played a major role in a recent Alliday Show. She is forever part of dozens of Tulsa families’ treasured family photos. Imagine!

  18. The Gus* Modern Carmichael Bed is as comfy as it is handsome. That tall upholstered headboard is so nice to lean against when watching Forensic Files.

  19. The modern, simple Gus* Modern desk paired with a vintage orange Herman Miller chair is a dream com true for anyone who would like to enjoy a peaceful work area.

  20. It’s fun to make bi-sectional jokes. (Sorry.)

  21. Gus* upholstery has held up to lots of tough stains in our personal and customers’ lives—spaghetti sauce, raspberry-blue sucker, and even potty-training toddlers.

  22. Retro Den Creative Manager Holly says the velvet on her Margot sofa is extremely easy to clean. She uses a lint roller to swoosh away cat and dog hair.

  23. Gus* sofas come in a large variety of firmness levels for folks who love squish or those who like a stiff cushion.

  24. Gus* offers a full decade-long warranty on their frames. 10 years!

Gus Modern Tulsa Oklahoma Retro Den.jpeg

Summer Patio Update: One Simple Tip to Make The Entry of Your Home Welcoming, Plus Tulsa Garden and Patio Supplies Sources

Tulsa patio landscape summer update

Patio Aspirations (and Dreams Deferred)

I struggle with making the front of my house look attractive.

I admit, my curb appeal game is not very strong. In fact, the list of things I’d like to update and change is the same list from last year.

And I quote:

1. beautiful landscaping (?!)
2. a circle drive (?!?!)
3. repairing the sidewalk with the giant crack
4. replacing and repainting the siding
5. removing the Astroturf from the front step
6. replacing the supports with simple wooden ones

The list, it goes on and on.

One Simple Tip To Update and Refresh Your Patio (with Tulsa Garden and Patio Sources)

Though I have accomplished nothing from my wishlist (yet), I did remember one thing from last year about easily improving my curb appeal for the summer:

Add flowers!

So I did.

I went to Rancho Flores here in Tulsa, Okla., a garden center and landscape haven, and perused until I saw yellow flowers that tickled my fancy.

I’m going to have my fancy tickled always when I drive up to my home this summer! And that’s nice, right?

Patio Dining, Patio Playdates, Patioscapes (!!!), and other Patio Dreams

So, how’s your patio game? Did you make a list of patio aspirations (that may or may not have been realistic)? Or are you more down to earth about your patio dreams and desires? Does anyone else dream of entertaining on your patio and, if so, what’s your to-do list around that? How about patio playdates?

What’s your favorite one-simple-patio-refresh-trick? We’re dying to know. Tell us your secrets in the comments.

(Daly wanted me to mention that you should be sure to see my patio from last year in a post that features me watering my plants.)

Winning! #plantmom #crazyplantlady

Tulsa Garden and Patio Supply Sources

Rancho Flores for hanging plants and large white pot on porch // small porch pot from Retro Den // Dried Bridal Bush Wreath from Daly’s in-laws yard // One lantana in the large pot from Tulsa Farmer’s Market, another extremely romantic business partner gift from Daly //

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Tulsa Garden and Patio Supply Sources.jpg
Tulsa Patio and Garden Landscape Supply Sources.jpg
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Tulsa flowers and landscaping sources.jpg
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Tulsa midcentury modern porch summer update.jpg
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Tulsa midcentury home flowers and landscaping.jpg
Tulsa midcentury home flowers and landscaping.jpg
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Tulsa hanging baskets sources.jpg
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Tulsa potted flowers midcentury modern patio.jpg
Tulsa potted flowers midcentury modern patio.jpg
Tulsa potted flowers midcentury modern patio.jpg
Tulsa potted flowers midcentury modern patio.jpg
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Tulsa midcentury patio porch design yard landscaping sources ideas