By: Kendall Louis
The intricate mahogany and gold French Bombay chest in the foyer of Samantha Stewart’s home is one of those antique statement pieces that makes a space, well, really fancy. But the reality of Sam’s world is revealed in the function of her entryway.
“The kids actually use it as an extension of their play space because their room is right through that doorway,” Sam says, referring to her son, Matthew, 4, and daughter, Mila, 1. “We roll around on the purple rug. Matthew has a train set, and he builds them all on the rug.”
The rug was an inexpensive HomeGoods find that Sam knew could live up to the wear and tear of dogs and children. “I don’t even like purple,” she says, stopping to acknowledge the blasphemous thought as she sits in her home in Fort Worth’s Westcliff neighborhood just miles from TCU. “But it’s such a pretty rug.”
Stewart, a part-time pharmacist at John Peter Smith Hospital, is also a fashion blogger “by early morning and night” as she says, with a cool 19,000 followers on Instagram. Her wardrobe style, which can be ogled at regularly on StyleofSam.com, overflows from her large walk-in closet and into the spaces of her home that she shares with her two kids and her husband, Don. She says her fashion style and home style are very similar. “I like a lot of different genres in both clothing and furniture. They are both ‘vintage eclectic.’”
One of the most striking vintage items is found in the navy velvet upholstered chair in the entryway. “[It’s] from my mom. It had a broken leg, and Don wanted me to throw it away, but I refused. I had it painted and recovered.”
The four-bedroom house itself is an act in patience. Many rooms sit empty waiting to be designed, while others are meticulously arranged. They’re the kind of rooms you can look at and feel your eyes glistening. But the foyer’s design is a bit different than the rest of the home.
“It’s a very happy space for me because everything else [in the house] is black and white and neutrals. So I took a chance with this space,” she said. Her leap of faith with color was spurred by her love for the framed piece by Dallas artist Katie Craig that she bought on Minted.com. The largest art on the wall, it ties together the other art, including a vintage canvas print from Don’s grandmother. It’s the smallest piece above the chest that’s the most sentimental to Sam. Don’s uncle gave the tiny painting of two figures that form to make a heart shape to the Stewarts as a wedding gift.
But it all started with the Bombay chest. It was the first big piece the Stewarts bought together at an estate sale when they moved to Fort Worth nearly nine years ago. When Sam talks about the purchase, it’s clear it was a feat. She remembers bidding a little higher than half of the asking price, the minimum allowed. Not just for looks, it houses extra china for entertaining in the adjacent dining room. And in another ode to the reality of daily life, it also holds the dog’s leashes.
By: Kendall Louis