Image and text by Gabrielle.
A couple of weeks ago, I shared the story of how The Treehouse came to be ours. And today, I thought it would be fun to tell you a little more about what the house was like when we arrived.
One of the most interesting tidbits about The Treehouse, is that when we moved in, it was furnished almost exactly as we had seen it in photos.
That’s right, when we arrived from France, and entered the house for the first time, it was just as it’s pictured here. The sofa, the table, the area rug, the artwork, everything was still in the house. Plates and cups were in the kitchen cupboard. Practical things like scissors and matches too. Cleaning supplies and laundry soap. Linens and towels. Baskets and bookends. The table runner. The dried flower arrangements. Almost everything!
What wasn’t there? Most of the books, personal papers, their groceries (except some tea and spices), clothes. But if it wasn’t personal, it was still in the house.
A few weeks before we closed on the house, the previous owners told us they wanted to gift us their furniture. We were so touched! It was such a generous gesture. We assumed they simply meant the big pieces, like the beds and sofa. But they ended up leaving almost everything! When we saw it in person for the first time, it was just as it was when they lived here.
And friends, the previous owners have amazing taste! They are big pottery collectors and there were unique pieces all over the house. I gathered my favorites and displayed them on the open shelves in the kitchen (that’s the image at the top of this post). The pots and pans they left are a beautiful All -Clad set that looks barely used. The towels and sheets are Marimekko — one of my favorite design houses. Honestly, from everything we’ve learned about them — and from living among their things — we know they are simply quality people. We are total fans.
Back to the arrival. As you can imagine, it was amazingly convenient to arrive from France, with nothing but suitcases full of clothing, to a furnished house. Sheets, towels, hand soap. Everything! What a blessing. In fact, it was very similar to how we felt when we arrived to the furnished home in France (back in the day).
But because this was not a temporary rental, we were also aware that inheriting their furnishings would add another layer to our move. And it has. Some of their belongings work for our needs. But some don’t. For example, we had to say goodbye to much of what was in their office in order to fit in our big work table. And in the kitchen, we went cupboard by cupboard and decided between their glasses and our glasses, their blender and our blender.
I think that’s part of what made clearing out our storage unit difficult as well. I didn’t want to bring unnecessary repeats from Colorado, but I also hadn’t had time to really evaluate what was already in The Treehouse. Would we need our bed linens from storage? Or was there enough at The Treehouse for 8 people (and for our bed sizes)? That sort of decision x 1000.
It was tricky. And when our truck from Colorado arrived in Oakland, part of us moving in, meant moving many of their belongings out.
In practical terms, this has meant a delivery to Goodwill almost every day since we moved here, as we slowly make decisions on what’s necessary in each room. For big pieces, we add free listings to Craig’s List on a weekly basis as well.
Tell me, Friends. Have you ever moved into a furnished home (either bought or rented)? I know it can seem strange if you’ve never done it before. We’ve done it twice now, and have concluded that it’s pretty darn fascinating to sort of live in someone else’s life for a minute — especially if they have good taste! : ) I’d also love to know: Would a situation like this drive you nuts, or would perks, like a collection of pottery, make it worthwhile for you?