The Circle Link-Up: Moodboard 15 – “Dream Home”featured

The Circle Link-Up: Moodboard 15 - "Dream Home" {the ponytail diaries}

When both your husband and father are architects, you’re gonna end up with some pretty strong opinions about architecture and design, whether you like it or not.

(You’re also gonna be able to tell your friends that this bar is so loud because the cool industrial-chic exposed ceiling has nothing to absorb sound, so all the noise just bounces all over and echoes and gets LOUDER AND LOUDER. Then you’re gonna put yourself in time out with a beer.)

The benefit, though, is that I have a pretty good sense about what I like and don’t like about houses and buildings and can more or less tell you why (or at least rain fairly convincing bullshit down on you). Right after we got married, Husband and I thought we’d be in a good position to buy a house before our first anniversary. Obviously, that got put on hold when I quit my job, but not after spending more nights than we should have scrolling through Zillow and daydreaming.

Now? Now I shouldn’t be allowed on Houzz unsupervised (just like I shouldn’t be allowed alone in bookstores, Teavana, the Giants Dugout store, TJ Maxx, or Cost Plus). It’s a very frequent occurrence for me to send Husband a Gchat with a link to something on Houzz with a comment like “OMG” or “WE NEED THIS IN OUR FUTURE HOUSE” or just “!!!!!!!!!”

(A couple weeks ago it was this tile backsplash. I’m very anti-subway tile so sometimes I make a point to look for alternatives and HOW GORGEOUS IS THAT SHIZZ. I mean really.) (Luckily my and Husband’s tastes overlap. For the most part.)

So, at first, I had no idea what I’d do for this month’s The Circle prompt — a 15-item moodboard of whatever we want. Then it was obvious — I had an excuse to scroll through all the pretty home photos on Houzz! Whee! I set forth and found 3 photos that at least have elements I love love love for each of the following: kitchen, bedroom, home office, outdoors, and living/dining.


Really, this one isn’t so much about the kitchen (although skylights!) but click through and enlarge the photo and THOSE DOORS. I told Husband I’m very willing to skimp on some other part of our future home so I can have gorgeous, custom, Frank Lloyd Wright-style art glass doors.

So, in general my “style” is something along of the lines of modern/contemporary Craftsman. I love the structural integrity and natural design elements you get with Craftsman homes with clean lines and spaces. I hate anything overly ornate, gilded, flowery. Victorian is not my thing. Homes that are trying to look like Greek or Roman palaces (columns, arches, excessive marble) are definitely not my thing. But I am from California, so I can usually get on board with beach homes (especially whitewashed wood details) and Mediterranean/Spanish-style (think California missions). “Farmhouse,” “rustic,” “contemporary,” “Southwestern,” “Scandinavian” are all most or less okay with me too.

This is ALMOST my dream kitchen. The butcher block counter, the high shelves that aren’t hanging right over your workspace, the colors…all yes. Just switch out the subway tile and I’m sold.

Even I make fun of the fact that every. single. person on a home design show on HGTV wants an “open concept” floor plan. And you do have to wonder if eventually this style is going to seem as dated as shag carpeting. But throughout my entire life, in every home I’ve spent time in, people tend to congregate in and around the kitchen whether it’s “open concept” or not. So why not open it up? And putting in an island gives people an area to hang out without getting in the way of the cook(s). It’s brilliant (plus, storage!).


I’m good with everything in here except the fireplace. I don’t know, maybe put stonework around it instead?




While in an ideal world, my bedroom would pretty much just have the bed and a couple nightstands with a few books and some artwork/photos and stuff, not a bunch of shelving and storage — the sliding barn door? Love.

Home Office

So simple. So classic.


I love that this is so compact, but uses the space efficiently and still has plenty of space for creating. And the big open window behind the computer!


So, totally not practical for me BUT THOSE SHELVES.


The color!


What, you don’t want your own outdoor palapa/theater? Weird.


My ideal raised bed veggie garden is probably a bit smaller. But how pretty and peaceful!


I’m not sure why I’m drawn to dining tables with wall seating. Really, they seem like they’d kinda be a pain if you have a lot of people over, like sitting in a big booth at a restaurant. But they look so cozy!


Love the colors, lose the columns.


Again with the bench seating. And, um, I want those wine bottle lanterns, like, yesterday.



What would go in your dream home?

(also, this post wasn’t sponsored by Houzz in any way. in case you were wondering.)

photo credit (top) // death to the stock photo // modified in photoshop



  • 1. skylights? My favorite! We have one in our dining room and I love the light it brings in.
    2. I love the reading nook and am trying to find a way to incorporate something like that in my home.

    I enjoyed seeing everything you shared!

    • I loooove skylights. Anything that brings in more light is good, in my opinion.

  • I used to spend hours planning my dream home. 🙂 A window seat is something I’ve been dreaming of since I was a kid! 🙂 I love the idea of sitting by a window and reading and soaking up some sunshine and natural light, too!

    I also loved those office photos! I think we have a lot in common in terms of interior design!

    Thanks for linking up!

    • When I was younger, I tried to sort of move furniture and pillows around in my room to make a “sort of” window seat. Eventually I just moved my bed against the window and made it work that way. One day I’ll have a proper one… 🙂

      • That’s hilarious because I did almost the same thing! I moved my bed in front of my window for the same window-seat effect and have been looking for a bench or something to add, too. 🙂 Hopefully we’ll both end up with them!!

  • I’m in love with the barn door.

    • Isn’t that awesome?? I’ve seen those showing up more and more lately.

      • I have too. They seem to be in a lot of design-forward houses and on a lot of tv shows.