Hello! I'm Suzannah, a serious DIYer and mom of two little ones. Follow along with my DIY fixer upper house renovations, sewing and crafty projects, real food recipes, and de-stressing goals.
I believe you can love your home just the way it is, AND have the power to design and make big changes to make it better.
I'm also the author of DIY Wardrobe Makeovers!

Street of Dreams 2015 - a morning of inspiration and overwhelm!

As much as I love houses, decorating, and getting new ideas, I don't stay up on glamorous home decor trends (I now realize). Last weekend husband and I went to Street of Dreams for the first time in about 10 years, and wow, were we surprised. Things have changed. I guess we would know might if we watched shows about mcmansions on HGTV, but we don't. We wandered through each of the 9 homes with awe, surprise, appreciation, and sometimes a crinkle on our brows! (Does anyone really need 3 washer/dryer sets in one house??)

This was Street of Dreams's 40th year in the Portland area. Since 1976 the Home Builders Association of Metropolitan Portland puts on a show of 8 or 9 luxury homes, built and designed by local firms. There are awards for Best Architectural Design, Best Master Suite, Best Outdoor Living, and so on, and the homes are sold after the show.

I was really impressed by the diversity of styles this year! Some very modern, some retro (one of the coolest houses was a renovated 1950 home by John Yeon, which had a very cool floorplan and northwest/modern style), some more traditional... Of course, they were all huge and elaborate, but some more than others, and I actually got some ideas from a few of them! (Although I can't imagine ever needing or wanting 5,500 SF for just my family!) When I went to Street of Dreams last time (2005, maybe?) I remember a lot of the heavy, dark wood, wrought iron, Tuscan-inspired, dark earth tones and burgundy... not my taste back then or now! So it was great to see such variety of design.

I did notice some trends that speak to my demographic, moreso than the homes in the 2005 show spoke to my then-late-teens self. Almost all of these houses had home gyms! Some very cool, like with kettlebells, and one with mounted squat/press racks and hanging rings. (I have a home gym, too, although it's called half of my garage with Craigslist-assembled equipment. Not quite the same as one with a walk-through to a sauna room and shower like one of these had. Oh, also, a secret bookshelf door from the living room. Seriously.)

Other trends I noticed? Of course there are big kitchens, with multiple sinks, cabinet-faced dishwashers and fridges, and built-in espresso machines, but lots of them also had faucets over the stove. Would be handy for me making bone broth!

So much marble. Kitchens the size of restaurants.

Of course there was a lot of grey and white (been there, done that! still like it.), but it was cool to see it in modern and more traditional looks. 

Every single house had a wet bar (if you could call it that--most were bigger than my kitchen) and multiple seating areas both indoors and outdoors. These are homes for some serious parties!! Here's one of the smaller, more playful ones. Reminds me of a trendy urban hotel.

Every house had at least one private office area off the main foyer, and some also had quiet reading spaces as well. A nice break from the massive TVs and 6 different patio sets they also had!

Also lots of walk-in closets. This was the first one we saw so it felt so decadent... but actually it was one of the smaller ones (and no private washer/dryer in this one!--still can't believe that's a thing--). Although I liked it a lot better than the larger, darker, windowless ones.

Another trend I'm already all over? Cool patterned walls in half-bathrooms. (Remember my DIY stencil project?)

One of my favorite houses was one I could tell from the outside that I would love. Every room was beautiful. Crown molding and vaulted ceilings in all the bedrooms, beautiful cabinets and a farmhouse sink in the laundry room, amazing tone-on-tone tile patterns on bathroom and utility room floors... and, more grey and white.

This is the secondary living room, of course. Far too small to be the main one. (I kid.)

And a pretty amazing kitchen. This one had a $22,000 stove and $11,000 chandelier in the entryway!

So much great tile at these homes!

Seeing 9 houses in a few hours is quite a whirlwind. We came, we took photos, we got inspired, we got overwhelmed... and we felt grateful for our townhouse with its relatively easy-to-clean spaces and adequate, but not excessive, rooms. I can't imagine every needing a single building so large and so fancy in every space, BUT seeing Street of Dreams did make me excited for my next decorating projects. I'd love to have a home that was the right size for me, but totally beautiful and well-made everywhere.

Street of Dreams is going on in Lake Oswego through August 30! It's a super fun outing and a great way to get inspired!

Thanks to Street of Dreams for the tickets they provided for me and my husband to go tour. I didn't receive any monetary compensation for this post; I just wanted to share it with you in this depth because it's fun!

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