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Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Happy Friday everyone! It’s Holly Marder here with another gorgeous home tour for you in the Netherlands for my Homes With Heart column on decor8! This time, I am taking you through a Scandinavian-style renovated family home in The Hague that I photographed so you are seeing the photos first here! Interior designer Hedda Pier and her husband Michiel Lenstra saw immediate potential when they first laid eyes on their three-story home dating back to the 1800s. Period details, space and light were a few key factors that sealed the deal, launching them into an experimental renovation which resulted in a well thought-out, not to mention gorgeous, home for their growing family.

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Considering both aesthetics and functionality, they re-thought the entire layout of the house to maximize light and their quality of life as individuals and as a family. As Hedda operates her interior design business Saus Design from home, she placed her studio space right at the entrance. A large window facing the street floods the space with light and provides a cheerful place for Hedda to meet with prospective clients and carry out her design work.

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Through the office space is a contemporary live-in kitchen, which is where Hedda and Michiel spend most of their time as a family with their daughter Stella. An eclectic mix of chairs surround their custom made oak dining table. Though there were concerns that the kitchen would be too dark with small windows placed high up, Hedda is particularly proud of how the kitchen worked out. She owes much of the light and bright results to the clever use of fresh white and pale wood, with her signature blue accents (hello, gorgeous SMEG fridge and Eames chairs!).

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

The living room on the first floor carries through Hedda’s Scandinavian style, with white painted floorboards, natural light by the bucket load and an eclectic mix of furnishings both old and new. Though they stripped the interior back to its bare bones during the renovation, Hedda and Michiel were careful to retain some of the property’s original charm. An original fireplace with marble mantel as well as classic cornicing echo the era in which the property was built. White painted wooden floorboards enable the couple’s many works of art to really stand out.

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

In the living room, they painted the lower half of the walls in Farrow & Ball’s ‘Mizzle’. I love how this muted color adds warmth and life to the space while complimenting the bolder teal and red highlights seen through the artworks and accessories.

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

I also adore the vibrant artwork above the sofa, by Anna Taratiel from Battalion Gallery in Amsterdam.

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

From teal to turquoise, from sky to powder, Hedda’s obvious love affair for the color blue follows her to the master bedroom, where Piet Hein Eek’s ‘Scrapwood’ wallpaper adorning a singular wall commands the palette. Various shades of the cool hue are striking against charcoal bedding and white floors, while soft and floaty lace curtains add a feminine touch to the space.

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

The couple chose to have built-in plywood wardrobes installed, much to their contractor’s hesitation Luckily, the end results are as fabulous as they are functional. When it comes to design choices made during the renovation, Hedda admits, “much of what we did was purely experimental.” The bedside tables were repurposed from old Ikea kitchen cabinets. Vintage accessories, such as the industrial pendant and yellow lamp on the bedside add a touch of fun. The print, I could fall madly in bed with you, is by Therese Sennerholt.

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

On the home’s third level, the couple’s daughter Stella enjoys a cheerful bedroom bursting with color and hand-crafted accessories. “Creating a happy but also functional space for Stella to enjoy was my main focus,” Hedda says. “All too often, people design their children’s rooms to echo their own style.” Low placed shelving enables Stella to easily reach books and toys, while pops of color positioned low add fun and visual interest.

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Wanna know my favorite item in the whole house? That gorgeous vintage cognac leather armchair, which Hedda gave to Michiel as a gift.

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

Homes With Heart: Light Living in a Dutch Family Home

The latest addition to their home’s interior has been the creation of a bedroom for their second child, due this month. Not knowing the child’s gender, they have gone with a neutral space with muted green and yellow as the primary colors, with a few vibrant colors thrown in for good measure. Exposed woodwork, fine lacy curtains and little hand-painted birds here and there give the space a soft, almost ethereal feel.

Hedda approaches all of her design work in much the same manner she did her own home – with a strong emphasis on functionality, the courage to experiment ever so slightly with a vibrant look and feel to finish things off. “My home is an extension of brand and my most successful experiment,” she says. A winning combination? I think so.

Tell me: what do you love about this home? I’d love to know.

Thanks for having me, Holly! See you all next month with anther inspiring interior! – Holly

(text/photos: holly marder)

Posted by decor8 in Home Tours, Homes With Heart on October 11, 2013

Your comments...

  1. Annie Kruse commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 11:50am

    Gorgeous home. I love all the quirky details like the wallpaper (?) feature wall in the master bedroom. And the kid’s rooms are adorable. Nice idea to highlight the skirting boards with colour. Will share immediately. ;-)
    Annie Kruse´s last blog post ..TOTALLY BLOKEY PUMPKIN AND SAGE SOUP

  2. Lucy Chen commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 11:57am

    Oh, how tiny is the baby’s cradle! So cute!
    When I see beautiful and tiny babies rooms, I always wonder if they are always kept that way, with the baby or the toddler running around and making messes. LOL!
    Lucy Chen´s last blog post ..How to Overcome Fear of Failure and Move Toward Your Dream

  3. Chi chi Furniture commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 12:20pm

    A gorgeous home, I also like that they’ve painted the skirting board a colour – makes a huge difference in such a simple way. White spaces really lend themselves to creative play with colour, adding key furniture pieces in a subtle pastel shade can make a huge difference without upsetting the balance of tranquility and light bright airiness. I adore the plank wood back wall in the bedroom too – so inventive and effective.

  4. Mari Martins Otaguro - Blog ArqDream commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 3:34pm

    I loved this ecletic, clean and casual style! :)
    Mari Martins Otaguro – Blog ArqDream´s last blog post ..Você conhece as cadeiras e poltronas “clássicos do design”?

  5. A Whimsical Girl Named Debbie commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 4:03pm

    This home is absolutely divine with all its pops of color in the furniture, pillows, buntings, wall boards, & books {OH MY!}. Love it!

    A Whimsical Girl Named Debbie´s last blog post ..Cocoa & Pink Marshmallows….

  6. Piia Anneli @ annelivia commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 4:17pm

    Such a lovely and airy home! Many details I so adore, such as the lamp and wallpaper in the bedroom, and all the mid-century pieces of furniture.
    Piia Anneli @ annelivia´s last blog post ..Oranssi vallankumous

  7. julia-lifeonchurchill commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 8:35pm

    what a beautiful, light filled space. The pallet wall in the bedroom is inspiring!
    julia-lifeonchurchill´s last blog post ..found things

  8. Sarah commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 9:09pm

    How lovely Holly! You take beautiful photos:))
    Sarah´s last blog post ..Glahemian

  9. Doreen commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 9:25pm

    I just love the way they take the color blue out of its usual
    peaceful and calm context to make it appear perky, fresh,
    and expressive.

  10. Dana H. commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 11:08pm

    Scandinavian style is so calming, fresh and natural. Thank you for your beautiful photographs.

    The pink painted baseboards in the little girl’s room upstairs were a great use of colorful splashes.
    Dana H.´s last blog post ..Design Highlights/HGTV Magazine October, 2013

  11. Ali commented
    October 11th, 2013 at 11:52pm

    Love the splashes of colour around this home, adds whimsy interest and delight, yet in a subdued and subtle manner. Thanks for sharing.

  12. Erin Frost commented
    October 12th, 2013 at 12:30pm

    This is a very beautiful home. But I feel like I have seen it a hundred times. Everything in it is lovely but extremely familiar. It is clearly abeautifully edited space. I love the contrasting molding colors.

    No offense meant, but I would love to see some new interiors, something that is truly outside the usual Scandinavian inspired interior (white floors, vintage danish furniture mixed with ikea, with modern details). You have been doing this for years, do retail trends just make it tough to find new things/ideas?
    Erin Frost´s last blog post ..2013 Preschool Garden Plan

  13. decor8 commented
    October 12th, 2013 at 12:42pm

    @Erin – Funny you say that, did you read my most recent post about how moving changes your focus? Maybe that post inspired this comment? You may find it interesting. We all need to change things up from time to time, I feel this need too though you can always expect my taste to stay very “Holly style”. :)

  14. Erin Frost commented
    October 12th, 2013 at 2:15pm

    Yes, I am in Boston, your post came after my comment. But I hear the same thoughts from you. In your experience, how long do trends take to run their course? You mentioned the Italian Tuscan trend was very strong in Germany when you arrived but has begun to disappear. I lived in Europe for several years and have lived in US cities most of my adulthood. So there has always been a diverse design menu at my disposal. But I don’t see much of that reflected in the things I read online. I am starting to move away from reading about design online because so much of it is repetitive. I hope you can move in a different direction it would be a breathe of fresh air.
    Erin Frost´s last blog post ..2013 Preschool Garden Plan

  15. Kathryn Ferrie commented
    October 12th, 2013 at 4:50pm

    Beautiful home! I especially love the blue couch! Gorgeous!
    Kathryn Ferrie´s last blog post ..A Steak, A Bike and Some Cake {Day 7}

  16. decor8 commented
    October 12th, 2013 at 7:34pm

    @Erin – I wrote the post a few days ago and scheduled publishing to run this morning so perhaps that’s what happened, but your thoughts are interesting. I actually love my personal style and my blog and am really inspired by my work – I feel I have a very set “look” that makes me, well, ME. I change things up from time to time depending on where I live (architectural considerations along with colors/materials in my rental homes dictate my design very often) but my style makes me happy. I’m absolutely unapologetic about how I decorate and about what I post on decor8 – I love what I do and figure if others do to, they’ll read my blog and if not, they’ll find a blog that clicks more with them. As far as finding a breath of fresh air online, I guess I can invite you to try blogging about design and the things that you love! Perhaps you can fill your own “void”.

    When I started decor8, the only design blogs out there had a very NYC/LA urban centric vibe or were Shabby Chic style. I appreciate both styles but found things very repetitive and that was back in 2005! So I started decor8 to fill, what I saw as, a little gap. I wanted to show bright and light interiors with a more European flair along with things in general that I loved. I had been traveling to Europe annually since I was in college and lived between Germany and Boston for several years in two residences before relocating here full-time, so I also felt I had a real advantage and I’m so glad I followed my heart. I notice that you write a gardening blog. Perhaps then you have found new direction for yourself – to get more into design and fill the void. I always tell my students this in class – don’t complain about what is missing – fill the void because that could be your greatest career move ever.

    As for me moving in a different direction – don’t count on it. :) Again, I am who I am. After spending my twenties anxious about fitting in and being part of the crowd, I stepped away from the insecurities of my youth and now my approach is that if someone isn’t keen on what I do that is absolutely fine – as long as I am happy and living authentically.

    xo Holly

  17. samantha hahn commented
    October 13th, 2013 at 9:20pm

    Obsessed with this incredible home!!!!

  18. Beatrice commented
    October 13th, 2013 at 9:52pm

    Erin Frost,

    @erin -Inspiring interiors and ideas? I fully agree, nice home tour and very lovely but seen it a hundred times. Let us reach out to the bloggers and show them our (may be not) perfect and adventurous interiors! There are inspirational interiors everywhere around us!

  19. decor8 commented
    October 14th, 2013 at 11:46am

    @Beatrice and @Erin Frost – You ladies should team up and write a design blog – would be great to have more voices enter the field. “Be the change you wish to see in the world” is a great motto to follow. :)

  20. gul commented
    October 15th, 2013 at 2:03pm

    Hi… It is very beatiful house. I loved your decoratıon Ideas.

  21. Marjory commented
    October 16th, 2013 at 9:03pm

    Love your sense of aesthetic, Holly. Beautiful home, can feel the love in the space. :)
    Marjory´s last blog post ..Trust this not knowing. It’s the crack that lets the light in

  22. Paulette commented
    October 17th, 2013 at 2:00pm

    I love all these ideas, especially the wood wall decor !
    Paulette´s last blog post ..White baby cocoon made of organic cotton

  23. Vivian commented
    October 26th, 2013 at 3:10am

    How beautiful! I am so in love with what I see in the pictures. So simple yet so interesting and personal.

  24. Melina commented
    November 18th, 2013 at 11:33am

    Another amazing Scandinavian home with character! Most homes have that something special, something about owners’ character and you choose to show us some of the best!

  25. Samantha commented
    December 28th, 2013 at 10:44pm


    Well said!

  26. Jane Rosenbaum commented
    December 29th, 2013 at 3:14pm

    LOVING, LOVING the pink baseboards in the little girl’s room. Such a great way to use pink so that it remains strong.

  27. jillderiu commented
    March 1st, 2014 at 6:35pm

    I LOVE your style and your beautiful home!! lots of inspiring ideas!!! so warm and happy!! love it love it love it!!

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