Stephanie & Her Home
Thanks to her creative experience working as a POPSUGAR editor and as the blogger behind Sunkissed Steph, Stephanie Nguyen has an undeniable penchant for pairing pretty things—whether in her gorgeous monochromatic home or her wardrobe. Since our own introduction to her brand, Stephanie has quickly emerged as our go-to girl for all things edgy-meets-feminine, and her Instagram feed has become something of a shopable retreat that we love to come back to over and over again.
What you might not know, though, is that a black-and-white aesthetic hasn't always been her focus! Over the years, the San Francisco-based creative has organically embraced a monochrome, feminine and relaxed style of dressing and designing that has permeated everything from the type of furniture she invests in to the heels she slips on. As for her blog, it began as a simple creative outlet in 2011, but has since transformed into a visual expression of her style and photography musings.
Now known for her minimalist and modern sense of style, Stephanie's home is everything you'd imagine it to be: Traditional, effortless and chic. Every facet of every room reflects the passion that has led to her success. Below, we invite you to see more of Stephanie's swoon-worthy space and to read about her dueling loves for fashion and design.
What inspired you to create your blog, Sunkissed Steph?
When I was in college, I was constantly reading style blogs and finding inspiration everywhere, from street style to photography. I wanted to find a way to both internalize and project all that inspiration in my own way. At the time, there weren't a whole lot of student bloggers, so I enjoyed carving out my own niche.
The name ‘Sunkissed Steph’ comes from my love for the hazy, soft, golden glow kind of photography you see so often in engagement and wedding pictures. I tried to achieve that with a lot of the photography at the beginning of my blog. My taste has evolved since then, but it's definitely still a style I appreciate!
What do you attribute the evolution of your style and taste to?
I think the turning point for me was realizing how much bright colors—or any color at all, really—were just so not me. It was like something clicked in my head—instead of fighting it and struggling to find ways to wear neon coral, I decided to just embrace the fact that I feel so much more comfortable and confident wearing black and white.
I'm not the best person at keeping the house free of clutter, but I try not to bring any new additions into the house unless I already have a designated spot for them. If only I was as diligent about applying the same concept to my wardrobe!
From where do you pull your daily inspiration?
I get a lot of my inspiration digitally. I'm constantly online—both for the blog and for my job (I'm an editor at POPSUGAR)—so naturally I come across inspiration from other bloggers and influencers. Australian bloggers, especially, really have the whole minimalist-style thing down.
How would you describe the aesthetic of your home?
I love the Scandinavian aesthetic, and it's something I try to replicate within my own space. They have a very distinct form of minimalism—it's stark in color and sparse in furnishings, but always comes across warm and inviting thanks to ample bright light, cozy textures and lots of greenery.
What is your favorite room in the house, and why?
The living room! We really lucked out with the amount of direct sunlight our apartment gets. This particular room gets light in the late afternoon, so I love coming home from work and unwinding on the couch while watching the sun set out the window.
It was like something clicked in my head—instead of fighting it and struggling to find ways to wear neon coral, I decided to just embrace the fact that I feel so much more comfortable and confident wearing black and white.
Where are your favorite places to purchase home décor?
I love the usuals, of course—West Elm, CB2, EQ3, Target—but I also love complementing the more obvious pieces from these stores with unique finds and small trinkets from Etsy, flea markets and local home goods stores. Atomic Garden in Oakland is so good, and dangerously close to my house.
Favorite magazines to subscribe to: Go!
I love Porter and Harper's Bazaar. I also discovered Au Courant's first issue while I was in London last fall and I'm excited to see where it's headed.
How do you choose the items you display on the rolling rack in your bedroom?
These are usually my current favorite pieces or just pieces I plan on wearing that week. It makes dressing in the morning a little easier when I've decided on a main piece ahead of time to work around. Right now, my mainstays are a Zara bomber jacket and a Lou & Grey slip dress.
What is your favorite color to use in home décor?
How do you keep your house so clean in order to maintain the minimalistic aesthetic?
Ha, I don't! I'm not the best person at keeping the house free of clutter, but I try not to bring any new additions into the house unless I already have a designated spot for them. If only I was as diligent about applying the same concept to my wardrobe!
Do you have any clever home storage tips?
I have a bit of an online shopping problem, so there are always a number of cardboard shipping boxes floating around the house. Instead of letting them sit there, my boyfriend came up with a storage solution and designated a spot for me to temporarily store them out of sight until I decide whether I want to keep or return something.
What are your favorite candles?
I wanted to find a way to both internalize and project all that inspiration in my own way. At the time, there weren't a whole lot of student bloggers, so I enjoyed carving out my own niche.
Tell us about your morning and evening beauty routines!
I'm pretty diligent about cleansing my face, so I'll do that morning and night with a non-foaming cleanser. In the morning, I follow up with a brightening serum and SPF. At night, I remove my makeup with an oil-based remover before cleansing and then top it off with an exfoliating toner, clarifying serum and hydrating cream.
What blogs and social accounts do you love to follow?
I follow a lot of blogs—too many to keep up with! As I mentioned earlier, I'm especially fond of Australian bloggers for their signature minimalism. Modern Legacy, The Chronicles Of Her and Badlands Blog are all longtime favorites. But when it comes to social media, my favorite accounts aren't bloggers. I'm obsessed with keeping up with Ariele Alasko and her sassy dog Mazie, and I can't get enough of the architecturally focused photographs from This Minty Moment.
Who are your go-to designers for home and apparel?
TRUEMODERN sofa // Loom Goods pillow // Target pillow // David Ehrenstråhle print // Anne Nowak painting // World Market standing bulb // Norden planter // IKEA locker // nuLoom rug // Jonathan Adler agate coasters // Pianca nesting tables // Creative Co-Op mirror // IKEA table // West Elm vase // West Elm bar cart // EQ3 lamp // West Elm nightstand // Urban Outfitters rug // Loom Goods pillows