I started using the term Surf Shack Chic as a sort of tongue in cheek way to describe my style shortly after we moved into our place about 2 years ago. For the first three years of our marriage we had squeezed our entire lives into a 500 square foot place we nick named the ‘tree house’ because it was right over the garage. Most of what I did there was for function. I still tried to make it look good because everything is right there, out in the open for everyone to see. My sewing machine and desk and all my supplies were right there in the living room. You could see the kitchen and the living room and the bedroom from the front door. The only other door in the house was for the bathroom.
My favorite room in the house. I made a lot of the pillows and two of them are from my trip to Mexico
The quilts are all family heirlooms, one from my side and two from Kerry's. (I also made the rack they're on)
I reupholstered both those chairs and the drift wood I found at Capitola beach after a storm.
This credenza was a Craigslist find that almost didn't happen, the phone number was posted wrong, luckily my husband is a genius and was able to figure out the real number. You can also see more goodies from Costa Rica and Mexico along side some vintage Santa Cruz surf pictures.
And it worked well for a long time. Until it didn’t. We slowly started looking for a new place. About two years ago we found this place, its almost twice the size of our old place at about 800 SF. Plus it has a yard! It’s a little more worn than our previous place which was meticulously maintained by our previous landlord but in some ways it gives us more freedom. We’ve really worked hard to make it our own and to improve it in the ways we’re able to. Part of having more space has been the ability to express my style more than before. Stuff for the shop, and other supplies can go in the workroom or a closet instead of out on a shelf where everyone can see. So things in the living room don’t all have to be about storage and function. And I LOVE IT!!!!
Which brings us back to Surf Shack Chic or SSC. Now, I don’t think I saw this name anywhere before I started using it but honestly who knows. I don’t really expect to be the first to anything, ever. For me it was an easy way to try to describe the feeling I wanted for our house.
I'm doing a bed makeover soon but I still love the bed set we got for our wedding. (Also being uber nerds I have a Star Wars alarm clock and Kerry has Star Wars Kleenex!)
The dress is another Craigslist score that will be refinished this summer as part of the bedroom make over. That stool is from Goodwill and I'll be reupholstering it too. You can also see the doggie bed I made Odyn. That he never sleeps in.
My husband has been surfing since he was a kid and I started around the time we met 8 years ago. Its one of the things we like doing together and whether we are out everyday or its been a few weeks, its something that has meaning to us. We are constantly surrounded by it. Besides, Santa Cruz is the first place surfing came to on the mainland after all, it’s the history of our home.
For me SSC is not just about slapping a couple of vintage surf pictures on the wall, I mean we totally have some vintage surfing photos on the wall, don’t get me wrong. And they are so cool. But its more about adventures we’ve had together, trips we want to take, artists we’ve discovered, things we’ve made and the backdrop to all of this: a relationship with the sea.
This is the view from our bedroom door. The landlord didn't want me to paint so I got removable wallpaper to paint our kitchen this wonderful pink (and I'm not a pink kinda girl). I love the way it looks with the cabinets, it makes me happy every time I see it. The rug is from Mexico, and fits in there perfectly.
Another view of our little kitchen. I love the open shelves above the sink, lets me show off the pretty kitchen accessories I have without giving up precious counter space.
When I was younger I would mostly bring back clothes or trinkets from the places I traveled to. Now my favorite thing to bring back is for the home. I love finding rugs or pillow cases, or something to hang on the wall. Every time I look at one of those pieces i think of the amazing trip connected to it. I also try to bring back something natural from that place. Either a rock or sand from the beach we went to. I put them in pretty jars, tag them and set them on my book shelf. Even if I cannot afford to buy a treasure, dirt from the places I’ve been is treasure enough.
I’m not going to be able to tell you how to ‘achieve’ SSC style because to me its about building a story and I don’t know yours. What I can tell you is to enjoy the journey and making your home a reflection of it. I always have a tendency to want things to be finished but the truth is wherever we are will always be a work in progress. We’ll always be working to make it better and we’ll always be making new adventures.