Liz & Her Home
When we consider farmhouse décor, often a few key details come to mind—things like distressed wood furniture, raw linen upholstery, iron metalwork and ruffled textiles. But what if your heart is stolen by modern design, too? How do you successfully blend sleek silhouettes with that telltale rustic farmhouse aesthetic? Love Grows Wild blogger, Liz Fourez, has discovered the secret, and we're so thrilled to share her gorgeous results in our latest home tour!
Thanks to Liz's stellar color instincts and knack for creating balance, this blonde-haired, blue-eyed creative has managed to pull off a tricky combination of designs in her Indiana-based home. As you walk from living room to kitchen, dining room to bedroom, it's impossible not to pick up on the neutrals-inspired color palette accented with dark iron fixtures and finishes. Each room on its own is a cozy manifestation of Liz's keen eye for classic farmhouse details, and the house as a whole is proof that modernism and farmhouse design can, in fact, go beautifully hand in hand.
Scroll on for tons of interior design eye candy, and to read through Liz's heartfelt words on motherhood, blogging, renovating and finding time to think creatively alongside sunshine and a steamy cup of coffee.
Tell us more about what it was like to take Love Grows Wild from a side project to a full-time career?
It wasn't long after I started Love Grows Wild that I realized I wanted to see how far I could take this hobby of mine. I learned that building a blog from scratch would take time, but I focused on creating informative, valuable, quality content with a focus on beautiful photography, and it didn't take long before I started to see the blog grow. I also networked with other bloggers and started reaching out to brands I wanted to work with.
In the beginning, I was ecstatic at the idea of making any kind of money from this blog of mine, but I soon learned that my time was precious and I would need to put a value on my time to continue creating top-notch content for the blog. I've heard people say this before, and I think it is so true: The moment you decide you want your hobby to become a business, you need to tell yourself that you are a business. Changing that mindset will motivate you to start making the changes necessary to have a full-time career.
What were some challenges you first faced with the blog, and how did you overcome them?
In the early days, it was hard to commit time to the blog when it still felt like a hobby. I couldn't help but feel guilty that I was taking time away from my husband and two young kiddos to be on social media and work on projects. Eventually, I had to set rules for myself that I would only work certain hours of the day, not all day and well into the night, which is easy to do when you work from home. And I also had to make myself stop feeling guilty about trying to grow my business. Success doesn't happen overnight and without a lot of hard work, so during the hours I dedicated to work, I hustled.
I learned that building a blog from scratch would take time, but I focused on creating informative, valuable, quality content with a focus on beautiful photography, and it didn't take long before I started to see the blog grow.
What’s your favorite aspect of brainstorming creative content for your site?
In the beginning of the blog, it felt really forced and unnatural to come up with creative content. I felt like I was supposed to be doing things that were on trend or that I saw other people having success with, but I came to realize that I had to define my own path and style when it came to the content on my blog. Now, the things I share are a natural extension of what is really going on in our home—our recent kitchen renovation or a new piece of furniture I built for our patio this summer.
I love gathering inspiration from unexpected places like movies, music, fashion or photography. Creative inspiration comes from many different places for me, whether it's traveling to a new city or going to a summer concert. All of these experiences are part of the creative journey that I share on the blog. I then sit in a clean, quiet, sun-filled room with a cup of coffee and a pad of paper and start mapping out what I want to share on the blog next!
Having a job that revolves around blogging and social media can be stressful. How do you decompress?
If I'm not sitting at the computer, I almost always have my phone nearby, so taking some time to unplug every once in awhile is important. Over the last few years, I've tried to become better at spending evenings and weekends without my phone, and I think it's important for my kids to see that. We watch a lot of movies together, and both of my boys play sports year-round, so I spend a lot of time cheering them on at football games and wrestling matches!
I find that when I take that much-needed break from blogging and social media, I'm much more excited to come back to it after the weekend is over.
How would you describe your personal style at home?
Cozy, minimalist farmhouse. I like my home to feel warm and cozy, but not cluttered with décor and furniture. Everything I do in our house resonates with modern farmhouse style, and I love mixing new pieces with timeworn antiques for a look that feels evolved over time.
What has been the biggest change in your design approach or aesthetic over the years?
I admire so many different design styles, but it took a few years for me to fully embrace the little farmhouse we live in and the direction I wanted to go with it. I decided to let the natural character and rural setting of our 1940s home influence the design, which is how my modern farmhouse style came to be.
You have an incredible knack for simple, yet impactful, DIYs! How do you dream up these projects?
Most of the projects I come up with are born out of necessity. Either I need more storage or a piece of artwork to fill a wall, and I will come up with a project from there.
The moment you decide you want your hobby to become a business, you need to tell yourself that you are a business. Changing that mindset will motivate you to start making the changes necessary to have a full-time career.
Which design trend or idea are you loving right now?
I honestly try not to pay too much attention to design trends and focus more on ideas and pieces for our home that are timeless. It saves me money in the long run not having to re-do our décor when the trends change!
How did you choose the palettes and patterns to integrate into your home?
I'm a lover of neutral colors, so white walls are pretty consistent throughout our entire home. You'll also find lots of weathered wood tones, woven textures and natural linens in each room. To keep all the neutrals from feeling flat and boring, I like to incorporate lots of texture through rugs, blankets, curtains and artwork. I love using a classic stripe pattern in pillows and bedding, too!
Your living room is gorgeous! Walk us through your thought process for the design.
Our living room seems to always be evolving, but we started by adding board and batten trim on the walls and painting everything white. The trim adds some detail and dimension to the walls, but the clean white paint keeps everything light, bright and airy. I used a linen slipcovered sofa centered on the large picture window and two tufted chairs on either side. This created a really nice seating area perfect for entertaining.
A jute rug and wicker trunk coffee table add some warmth and texture to the room, and I hung two large black lanterns on the wall behind the sofa for a bit of drama. For some extra storage in the living room, I used an old buffet that I painted and an antique armoire. None of the pieces match perfectly, but they all have the same palette of white, linen and wood that ties everything together.
Which design “rule” or idea do you refer back to over and over?
I constantly try to remind myself that "less is more." It's easy to keep adding more and more to a room, especially when you find new pieces that you love, but consistently re-evaluating what you have and editing your space is so important. Your eye needs a focal point to rest on, and that is hard to do when the whole space is cluttered with things. And symmetry—I really dig symmetry!
Which rules have you tossed out?
I've let go of the fact that you have to be an expert gardener or florist to bring nature into your home. Faux plants and flowers have come a long way, and many of them look exactly like the real thing! So, for anyone who can't keep a house plant alive to save their life, buy fake!
What advice would you give to new bloggers?
Put in the work and constantly re-evaluate your goals. If you don't know where you want to be in a week, month or year, you won't know how to get there!
What’s something most readers don't know about you?
I might look like a carefree blonde in photos, but I'm actually a control-freaked ginger.
It's easy to keep adding more and more to a room, especially when you find new pieces that you love, but consistently re-evaluating what you have and editing your space is so important.
Any guilty pleasures you're willing to share?
I'm obsessed with all the "Real Housewives" shows, margaritas (on the rocks, not frozen) and donuts.
Now that we're halfway through 2016, what do you most hope to accomplish by Dec. 31?
My first book, A Touch of Farmhouse Charm, comes out on Dec. 6, so I hope to have a successful launch for that! I also have some ideas for expanding my love of everything farmhouse into a retail business, so I hope to have a shop up and rolling by then.
- Tufted back slipper chairs: Target
- White console table: Target
- Turned wood lamp: Target
- Jute rug: Rugs USA
- Linen slipcovers: Comfort Works
- Wicker trunk: IKEA
- Glass jug lamp: Target
- Office chandelier: World Market
- Tufted arm chair: Target
- Wood desk: World Market
- Concrete lamps: World Market
- Cream velvet curtains: Target
- Bamboo roman shades: Home Depot
- Oval jute rug: Rugs USA
- X-back chairs: World Market
- Olive topiary: Ballard Designs
- Rug: Rugs USA
- Iron bed frame: Overstock
- White quilt: Target
- Nightstands: Sauder
- Swing arm lamp: Lowe’s
- White ruffle lumbar pillow: IKEA
- Quilted Euro sham: Wayfair
- Round wood tray: Wayfair
- Potting bench: tutorial
- Trellis planters: tutorial
- Wood bench: Joss & Main
- Wicker chairs: Joss & Main