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Home, Sweet Homes: Heather and David’s Carmichael Pad

8 Sep

So, this is a home tour that unfortunately got lost in the shuffle and kerfuffle of a Mimomito identity crisis. Thanks to the wonderful Heather and David for not sending rocks through our windows for taking so long to post this. It has likely been almost A YEAR since they welcomed us into their home to poke around and take photos. Thank you for your patience and kindness to allow us in your lives and beautiful home. I personally know that you both have added new items and pieces to your home, so perhaps this’ll be like a walk down memory lane, ha! Now, finally, Heather and David Hadley’s Home Tour.

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Where is your home located?
Carmichael, Ca

When was your home built and when did you move in?
Built in 1957, bought home in 2010 / 3bd, 2.5ba 1800 SF

 Why did you choose your home?
Good neighborhood; the layout; original hardwood floors; updated kitchen and granite counter-tops; but most importantly (according to David) the game room with a 1970’s built-in bar.

 What attracted you to mid century design?
In my mid-20s, I rented an old one-bedroom apartment in Midtown Sac.  I fell in love with the mid-century original features.  It had a pink bathtub, elephant gray tiling and toilet, the kitchen was galley style and had stainless steel counter tops.  I embraced the vibe, and carried that feeling into our new home.

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Rose and Ben’s Christmas Decor.

24 Dec

Here is me and Ben’s attempt at an Alexander Girard inspired christmas tree. After much stalling and frustratin’ myself over the right kinda paper, and the colors, buh, I decided that it isn’t exactly what I would have liked it to look like…but maybe next year we will refine! That’s a great thing about Christmas…it comes again next year. So I have come to comfort myself in saying that each year is another opportunity to make it better. That’s pretty optimistic right? YUP. YUP. That’s what I am trying to be about dear Mimomito. We shall see how long that lasts.

David’s Holiday Setup

24 Dec

David's 2012 MCM Christmas

Thank you for sending us your beautiful Eames-filled home with Mimomito, David!
Still haven’t sent us your holiday decor photos? Shoot ’em over to !

The Holiday Hadley Home

13 Dec

This isn’t the last you’ll be seeing of Heather and David Hadley’s house, the Hadleys recently were sweet enough to let us snap photos for a home tour to be featured here on Mimomito. Oh snap, indeed. Check back soon for that home tour – there’s so much more to be seen in this Carmichael gem.

Bison!hadley treemarshmellow birdieshadley lights

John and Patrick’s holiday cheer!

11 Dec

Hello Mimomito,
Here are a few pictures from our home this Holiday Season. Ignore the crazy person in the window in the first
John Nunes-Schiller (MODmix)
and Patrick Schiller-Nunes

Thanks for sending in stylin’ photos of your mid century modern Christmas, John and Patrick! I admire those who keep a full arsenal in storage for holiday decorating..

See even more photos after the jump!
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Around the house: It’s beginning to look somewhat like Christmas!

6 Dec

Finally got a big puffy Christmas tree up in our apartment, and our tall friend Thomas helped up string our lights and put our tree topper on for us. Alan and myself like a tree to really lord over us – showering us in holiday spirit. This year I decided to go through the dubious task of making really quick origami butterflies as ornaments. I like a monochromatic and simplistic tree, myself – not droopy with mismatched ornaments.
Our little apartment feels so cozy, finally. I come home all sad and cold from the dismal outdoors to my warm cave. Alan has been perfecting ham-hocks and beans with a side of collard greens. LET’S HUNKER DOWN, Y’ALL. IT’S OFFICIALLY WINTER.

Send us your holiday home decoration photos to post!

Around the house: A refrigerators story

26 Nov

Iz no story about it. BUT. Here is some photo’s of our mustard fridge.
YEAH. Mustard!

It doesn’t work good. I dont know much about refrigerators but I feel like when
I open the door to a fridge, I should feel a blast of cold air that knocks my socks off.
This guy just sends out a subtle breeze. Good news is I haven’t gotten sick yet.

I like the color, I like it’s wood handle. Hopefully it doesn’t kick rocks too soon.

Homes, Sweet Homes: Stacy

4 Nov

Who: Stacy – we met her through a Scout Living recommendation.

What: 2 bedroom/ 1 bathroom two story home.

Where: South Land Park, Sacramento, CA

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What attracted you to MCM design?

My personal style has evolved over the last 20 years. During my teens and up through my thirties I experimented with shabby chic, nautical, French Country and equestrian/hunt themes. As I’ve matured, so has my taste. I prefer less complicated furniture and design now.  I’m attracted to MCM because of its clean architectural lines and the simple compilation of natural and man made aesthetic. I love the mix and textures of metal and glass, wood and chrome, stone and ceramic. I also appreciate the craftsmanship in each piece. There is an inherent pride in so many MCM pieces. When you run your hand along a teak buffet or heft a glazed pot, you can feel the intentionality and thought that envelops each piece. MCM speaks to a time and place when people knew their neighbors, sat down to dinner and shared about each other’s day and handed down pieces from family member to family member. In such a disposable society as ours, I believe MCM allows us to reimagine that time and bring it back into our lives and homes.

Favorite designers and biggest influences for your style?

My mother has and will always most influence my style because she always supported my experimentation with design. If I wanted to paint my room mauve with sea foam and cream accents one week and primary colors the next, she let me. If I moved my furniture around and rehung posters every month, she let me. She showed me that design is personal and ever evolving. I remember her switching the entire look of our house each season merely by switching out pillows and linens. She would rotate art in the different rooms so that each piece took on new meaning depending on where it hung. She also showed me how to curate collections with both low brow, inexpensive items as well as heirloom and museum quality ones. She was creating vignettes in shadow boxes with African tribal pieces from my grandfather’s collection from the Belgian Congo long before Pottery Barn made a mint doing the same with seashells. I still seek her opinion about pieces and placement. She’s an amazing teacher with an amazing eye.

My favorite MCM designers, architects and artists are: (In no particular order) Paul McCobb, Pieter Groeneveldt, Jean Prouve’, Arne Vidder, Denys Lasdun, Erik Buck, Albert Frey, Mies Vander Rohe, George Nelson, Vladimir Kagan, Milo Baughman, Frank Llyod Wright, Taylor Wooley, Hans Wegner, Stanley Piltz, Alexander Calder, Warren Platner, Eero Saarinen, Arne Jacobson, Aldo van Eyck, Joseph Eichler, and Richard Neutra.

How do you feel about reproductions?

I’m not a big fan of reproduction. I would rather save my money and buy an original. The reason so much MCM furniture is around is because of the quality of materials used and the craftsmanship. I’d rather invest in one or two signature pieces than spend $20 on a do-it-yourself bookshelf made of particle-board that will be destroyed the first time a Delta breeze wafts by. I like the patina of age and wear that comes with purchasing an original piece. Collecting MCM pieces allows me to hear the stories of the people who cherished the piece before I did. I like to imagine the family from Dubuque, Iowa having the piece in their family for years before it found a new place in my home. I do, however, believe in ‘gentle’ restoration. For example, I will re-stuff a leather cushion (B& T Upholstery is fabulous) or wood polish a piece if need be, but I tend to like the scuffs and scratches. Like a scar, they tell a story of the adventure.

Furniture wise, what do you think is something you should invest in?

I think chairs and substantial pieces like a hutch or sideboard should be investment pieces.  For wood pieces, look for substantial joint construction and that the entire piece is made of wood. Most pieces that are knock-offs or reproductions have particle board backing instead of the entire piece being teak, rosewood, etc.

Where are your favorite places to shop for home décor?

  • New York: Obscura Antiques, The Evolution Store, Hell’s Kitchen and GreenFlea Flea Markets
  • Palm Springs: a La MOD, 20 First Modern & Vintage, Swank, Palm Canyon Galleria, Retrospect
  • Sacramento: Scout, 57th Street Antique Mall, Antique Trove, Midway Antique Mall, The Antique Company, Fringe, monthly Antique Fair under the freeway
  • San Diego: Klassik , Antiques on Kettner, Newport Avenue Design Center, Solo
  • San Francisco: Stuff, Past Perfect, Paxton Gate,
  • Seattle: The Mod Fix, Lucca, Velocity Art & Design, Kobo at Higo
  • Ebay, Craigslist, 1st Dibs

What are some of your best finds? From where?

Furniture Piece: I pinch myself whenever I use my Vladimir Kagan coffee table. It’s from the Palm Springs estate sale of Lena Horne. I have the provenance on it and got it for a steal. It actually cost more to ship home than the actual purchase price but it’s worth every penny. It’s sensuous and beautiful and I tell my self that the nicks in the glass came from a Rat Pack stumble and bumble. Even better, it reminds me of my best friends who have shared some of my favorite memories of them being patient with me while I make them traipse through every MCM store in Palm Springs when they’d much rather be lazing around the pool.

Collectible: I also love a MCM glove mold I purchased at Obscura Antiques in NYC. I had been a fan of their TV show and really wanted to visit this quirky shop and its purveyors. I trekked about four miles in sub zero weather to the store on my way to dinner at WD-50. The shop is about the size of a closet and while there realized that Anthony Kiedis and Flea were there buying several pieces. It was funny to think of these two rockers as fans as well but they were. Sort of a cool movment that I got my $20 hand while they purchased a two-headed cow in formaldehyde.

Art Piece: My Leiroy Nieman Dressage serigraph. Horses have been in my blood since I was 5 years old. I also grew up with close family friends who collected Nieman’s work. I remember telling them when I was visiting once as a child that I liked the artist who “drew outside the lines”. That such scribbles could be so full of vibrancy and energy was thrilling to me. I had been trolling ebay for his horse related pieces but most were either post card size, prohibitively expensive, or focused on racing. I really wanted one of his Olympic jumping pieces or one of his basic equestrian pieces. After about 11 months, a piece came up. Amazingly, it is one of his extremely rare dressage pieces, my riding discipline, and it was absurdly priced at bargain-basement levels. I immediately snatched it up. It has been authenticated and comes with provenance from a woman in New Jersey cleaning out her aunt’s attic. It now hangs in a prominent space above my couch. Even better, another one recently came up at auction for over $3000, a good $2800 more than I paid for mine. Score!

Greatest achievement in your home? Biggest challenge?

I think my greatest achievement in my home is that it is functional. Every piece is used daily; there is no piece that is off limits because it is too valuable or fragile. MCM pieces were meant to be used and I use everything in my home. I also like that while there is a clear design sensibility to my home, it is not overly decorated. It feels lived in as if every piece was acquired over time and from different places, all of which have now found their rightful ‘home’ with me. My biggest challenge is constantly editing my collection so that I can bring in new pieces that add brightness to the overall feel of my home. I believe in displaying items in odd number groupings 1-3-5-7…I can tend to move beyond 3 of something in a series, like my coral collection or horse sculptures. I am not a hoarder but there are so many stunning pieces, I would need a warehouse to hold everything would love to collect about MCM. Luckily, there are magazines, blogs, and places to visit the exquisite examples that exist elsewhere.


Future goals/ projects?

At some point I would love to build a MCM house from scratch on a piece of property along the American River bluffs with enough room for my horse. There are actually many firms that do some pretty amazing MCM pre-fab that would work. And materials today are so focused on sustainable green living that ensuring a low carbon footprint in the home would also be a priority. I appreciate that MCM design is all about the intersection of form and function so I would not need a lot of space. I love the open concept of one room merging into the next. The continuity of MCM creates a ‘loft like’ feel that I miss from living in Seattle and San Diego but have found in the current house I rent. I’d love lots of glass to invoke the feeling of living in a tree house. I’d probably have floating doors to merge inside and out. Sacramento is a great place to create indoor and outdoor living spaces year round.

I have three current drool-inducing goals:

  1. I’m dying to get my hands on a George Nelson for Herman Miller or Paul McCobb floating library shelving unit.
  2. I’d also love the one two punch of a John Stuart teak daybed sofa and an Adrian Pearsell sofa with floating end tables
  3. The stuffed marlin hanging at Scout Living. I have the perfect place for it to ‘float’.

Do you have any home inspiration recommendations for our readers?

I recommend actually keeping an inspiration folder/binder/scrapbook. I keep a hanging file folder in the same drawer where I keep my ‘travel’ wish file and files for all of my purchases, including provenance information. My inspiration file includes photos I’ve taken of pieces in stores and museums, pages ripped from magazines with architectural, art, and design inspirations. I go back to it constantly to help re-imagine what I might do with pieces I currently have and inspire me to experiment as well. I also recommend using frames as a unifying element in all of your rooms. Even though I have different styles and mediums in the art I collect-watercolor, needlepoint, pastels, ink, oil, serigraph, etc-I unify them all by using the same silver frames. Mid Town Framing does all of my pieces in museum quality UV glass and I trust them so much, I can literally drop off a piece and say “Do what you do” and the matting choices will be absolutely perfect for that specific piece. Lofing Lighting is the same w/ my lamps and shades. I really believe in supporting local business. Again, establishing relationships is key. It’s also economical. I get excellent service and often discounts because I bring in repeat business and referrals. I also constantly ‘shop’ my own collections. This allows me to curate my collections and create vignettes and change the look in the house merely by how I choose to organize and display pieces. This pieces that didn’t necessarily ‘pop’ in one placement or collection do so in another place.

Advice and last words?

In terms of collecting and curating, I have three simple rules to live by:

  1. Establish relationships with quality dealers. Erin and Stefan at Scout Living know me and what I collect and for what I am looking. They are an extra set of eyes and ears to help me find that perfect gem. They never push something on me but they will also introduce me to new names or designs based upon what they know I currently have and to further push my learning. They let me ask questions and never condescend or trivialize my endless curiosity. They also are extremely generous about proving referrals and other connections in the MCM community. It really becomes more of a partnership based upon a common love of MCM.
  2. Buy it when you find it but wait for the right piece. Every single time I’ve seen a piece and thought to myself, “I’ll come back and get it tomorrow”, the piece was gone. I’ve lost out on a few to-die-for pieces because of not acting right then. But I also got my Kagan coffee table because I was in the right place at the right time even though I wasn’t looking for a table at that time. Snatch it up before someone else does! On the other hand, there have been times when I waited and instead of buying a particular piece right now, I waited for the right piece. For example, my buffet took me almost two years to find and was worth the wait. This is also where a relationship with a trusted dealer works to your advantage. I had described the exact specifications of the piece I had in mind and Erin and Stefan kept showing me possibilities. Nothing worked until one day I got the call that they had found ‘the piece’. It was perfect down to every last detail, as if I had drawn the plans and had it built to spec. Waiting, and having a trusted relationship with experts, made it possible to find. It is one of my most cherished pieces.
  3. Mix it up. I don’t think people should be married to only one style or design period. While I have an almost obsessive fetish for MCM, I also have Regency, Art Deco and even Salvation Army and other pieces that speak to my soul. I really embrace an element of quirkiness in my design. I have a rubber shark that cost me two bucks that is one of my favorite statement pieces. Another is a small needlepoint of a dog that reminds me of my beloved schnauzer, Sophie: cost me 50 cents. My coffee mug set of retro animals is garish but they are the exact set I watched my mom drink tea out of while growing up and remind me of lazy foggy Sundays reading on the couch curled up with her. The Design Police aren’t going to come and haul you away if you mix pieces and periods. If they do, I promise to post bail!

Thanks you so much for sharing your lovely home, Stacy. It made me come home and want to change my whole house. 

If you’re interested in having your home featured on the blog, shoot me an e-mail at:

Homes, Sweet Homes: Darrell

9 Sep

Who was nice enough to let us feature their home: Our dear reader, Darrell.

What they told us about the home: “It is a 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom, a hair under 800 sq feet, on the third floor of a 5 floor building, with a north facing elevation. It is 1 of 3 buildings in the complex. The first floor is commercial space and the 3 – 5 floors are residential space.  The Alexan Apartments is located on the corner of Alhambra Street and  S Street.  Living here is really convenient. I’m across the street from the Sacrament Natural Food CoOp, there’s a yoga studio downstairs if I want to get my ‘downdog’ on, a deli, and a nail salon. I’m also probably an easy 10 – 15 minutes bike ride away from ‘proper’ Midtown.”

Where is the home located: Midtown, Sacramento, California

When was the home built and when they moved in: “The apartment complex is brand new, I think its under 5 years old. And I’m probably sure it’s the newest complex in the downtown/midtown area.  From what I understand the entire complex was built to be sold as condominiums but when the economy tanked in 2009 the developer decided to convert the project to apartments.  I moved here from San Francisco a little over 2 years old.”

Why they chose this home: “I lived in some pretty old Victorians apartments in San Francisco and knew I wanted new construction in Sacramento. Things I had on my checklist were: central air,  garage disposal, dishwasher, in unit W/D – things that I lived without during my tenure in San Francisco.  The fact that this apartment has a brand new swimming pool was diffidently a big plus given want I heard about the Sacramento summer.”

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What attracted you to MCM design?

When I moved to Sacramento, and except for my bed, I lived in an empty apartment for probably three months.  Whether it was a good thing or a bad thing, I had an empty canvas to work it.  Oversized country-looking furniture wasn’t my thing, nor did I have a desire to live in an Ikea catalog.  I hate clutter and was immediately drawn to MCM design due to the clean and simply design.  Certain MCM design pieces, such as the Eames Lounge Chair, are also timeless, so I knew that when I move from one chapter in my life to the next, I can move pieces around and wouldn’t have a home that was stuck in a time capsule.

Favorite designers and biggest influences for your style?

Charles and Ray Eames, Ludiwg Mies Van Der Rohe, George Nelson, Frank Lloyd Wright, Richard Schultz, and Eero Saarinen are a few of my favorite industrial designers and architects from the modern period.  A theme throughout their work that I appreciate is the use of simple forms and clean lines but also something unexpected either in the use of materials or color.

How do you feel about reproductions?

If you have any ambition to be a curator and your budget can handle it – Go Big or Go Home. I think there’s really nothing like having an original Eames lounge chair in your own living room if you can afford it.  The weight of the furniture, the small nicks and scratches, how the color of the wood may be a little off due to age, I feel these are markers of authenticity that you can’t get with a new brand reproduction, licensed or not.  But of course I’m no Bill Gates so I think reproduction in moderation is perfectly fine.

Furniture wise, what do you think is something you should invest in?

After a long day at work I like to be able to relax in front of my stereo system and listen to some music or just veg out in front of the TV so a comfortable coach is critical for me.  It’s something I know I’ll have for a few years and that I will use every day so I’m willing to spend a little more on it.

Where are your favorite places to shop for home décor?

Craigslist, Scout Living, Room & Board, H.D. Buttercup, West Elm, Blu Dot.

What are some of your best finds? From where?

My dining room table is probably my favorite Craigslist find.  The seller was this woman who finds and restores midcentury furniture for a hobby.  I got a great price for it and we had a “moment” sharing our thoughts on midcentury design.

Greatest achievement in your home? Biggest challenge?

My apartment is a little under 800 square feet and it has a north elevation so I get absolutely no natural sunlight. So the biggest challenge for me was to make the place feel more spacious and lighter than it really is.

Future goals/ projects?

I’ve been at my current place for about 1.5 years now and already outgrown the place so I’m looking to move into a bigger rental or make a purchase.  Apartment living is nice but it would be great to have more private outdoor space for the dogs and to entertain.

Do you have any home inspiration recommendations for our readers?

I’m a big fan of for practical design ideas and Dwell magazine for inspiration and plain day dreaming.

Advice and last words?

“A comfortable house is a great source of happiness. It ranks immediately after health and a good conscience.” Sydney Smith

Homes, Sweet Homes: Toni Okamoto

14 Jul

Who was nice enough to let us feature their home: Yours truly,  Ms. Toni Okamoto. I’m selling my darling home to make a move to the bay area, so I thought I’d show you guys what it looks like in case it sells.

What they told us about the home: It’s probably the cutest 1951, 833 sq ft tract home you’ve ever seen in your life. It’s a 2 bedroom/ 1 bathroom with original hardwood floors, original light fixtures and the previous owners (who had been there since 1964) left me the original metal cabinets as extra garage storage.

Where is the home located: Mangan Park, Sacramento, California

When was the home built and when they moved it: Built in 1951 and I moved in July 2010.

Why they chose this home: I started saving to buy a house when I was 22 years old and it took me about eight months to find anything that was more than half way decent. When you have a low budget it is extremely competitive because of investors. I found myself looking at places that were more like fun houses than homes, they had strange add-ons, unfinished rooms … I even went to a house that had a bathroom that was so skinny I had to turn side ways to get into.

When I found this house it was love at first sight. It had been on the market for one day and I put my bid in immediately. There were several other offers, but because of my Japanese last name and the family’s strong desire to keep the home in Japanese hands, they gave it to me. Here are a few photos of the previous family in the home:

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What attracted you to MCM design? My fondness of 1950′s life began as a child. My dad had an awesome pompadour, both of my parents were into doo wop music and our first family vehicle was a black 1953 Chevy.  However, it wasn’t until I met my dear friend Gretchen (who has the most awesome home, by the way) that I really began to appreciate Mid-Century Modern design – in all regards.

Favorite designers and influences in design?

Of course I love all of the big names in mid century modern design, but I think it’s more important to name some of the people who are doing awesome local stuff: Brian Schmitt and his awesome clocks and mobiles, and Two Accordions and their totally awesome quilts are some of my current favorites. If I could afford either of them, I’d hoard all of their stuff.

How do you feel about reproductions?

Personally, I don’t own any reproduction furniture. I find that often times it’s actually a lot more expensive than buying authentic MCM pieces and I take pride in knowing that nothing in my house has cost more than $200 bucks (the credenza). Also, a couple years ago I made a New Year’s Resolution to not purchase any new material goods (with the exception of hygienic purposes and household supplies) and I have stuck to it. Of course it’s a lot easier for me since I’m in the business of resale, but it has saved me a lot of money and has given me piece of mind that I’m trying my best not to contribute to poor labor practices and landfill waste.

Furniture wise, what do you think you should invest in?

Everything in your kitchen. For me, the kitchen is the place of gathering and quality time with friends and family. I love preparing good meals with good quality cookware and then sharing it with my loved ones on my beautiful kitchen table.

What are your favorite places to shop for home decor?

I buy most of my stuff from estate sales or thrift stores, but when I’m looking for something particular I head to Scout Living or check out David and Rebecca’s stuff at Atomic Fantasy Vintage.

Best finds? From where?

Gosh, this is a tough one because I’m one thrifty mofo. To me, my kitchen table is priceless. I picked it up in Stockton, CA for $125 and it’s a 1950’s formica dinette in original, pristine condition. Second would have to be my sofa. I bought two sofas from the same owner on CList for $350 and then sold one of them for $300, making it only $50 bucks

Greatest achievement in your home? Biggest challenge?

The biggest challenge is making your home exactly the way you want it. Having done this feature for the past couple years, I’ve found that people always say, “my house isn’t ready”, whether they’ve been there for six months or ten years. I’ve been in my home for two years and I’m constantly switching things around. I’ve gone through two dressers, three sofas, two kitchen tables, etc and I’m barely achieving  the vision that lives in my head.

Future projects?

Well, this is kind of a sad question because I’m moving. I love my home so much, but I need to satisfy my need for exploration and adventure while I’m still able.

Home inspiration recommendations?

This feature on our blog has inspired me in so many ways. The people we’ve met are so creative and wonderful, that I’m constantly being inspired.


You don’t need to live in a 1959 time-capsule.

Through this feauture, I’ve been able to see so many houses that incorporate modern design, as well as highlight the owner’s personality and other interests. I know it doesn’t look like I follow my own advice, but if you knew me it would show that my 1950’s styled house actually does represent my style:)

If you’re interested in having your home featured on the blog, shoot me an e-mail at:
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