I first went to Alysha's house a few months ago – she's a co-worker, and a few of us work friends got together to have hors d'oeuvres and chat, but mostly we wanted to be nosy and see Alysha's space. We had heard many stories and needed to see the house firsthand.
Alysha's gorgeous home definitely did not disappoint. It's the perfect mix of formal and casual, masculine and feminine, designer and DIY. Everywhere you look is a total feast for the eyes (I'm particularly fond of Alysha's dish, china, and milk glass collections), yet it feels completely comfortable and lived in.
Take a tour of Alysha's Whitefish Bay, Wisconsin home, and check out a Q&A with her!
My Midwest Is Showing: How would you describe your interior design style?
Alysha Gospodarek: I have a very eclectic sense of style. I love mixing high-end pieces with flea market finds. For example, we splurged on our chesterfield sofa in our living room but it's mixed with Ethan Allen chairs from a consignment store that I reupholstered. I'm also known to mix completely different styles—a 1930s crystal chandelier with a rustic farmhouse table, for example. Things you wouldn't think work together somehow do.
MWIS: Favorite room in your house?
AG: My formal living room. It's what sold us on our house in Whitefish Bay. It was built in 1932 and when I saw all the rich crown molding and beautiful wood floors, I knew we found "the one." Also, the decorating process was a labor of love that took years. The first thing I bought was a rug from Anthropologie, and everything in that room ties into the colors within it. If you are decorating a room from scratch, I recommend buying the rug first because it will make picking our furniture and decorative accents that much easier and more cohesive. It would be really hard to have a room decorated and then search for a rug that would match all these colors you've already chosen.
MMWIS: Where do you get your design inspiration?
AG: All over the place—Anthropologie, Town & Country magazine, HGTV, design blogs, the North Shore of Milwaukee, Ladurée in NYC... I pick up inspiration from anywhere and everywhere. For my breakfast nook, I was inspired by a Calico Corners fabric catalog.
MMWIS: Favorite piece in your house?
AG: My vintage framed Emilio Pucci scarf. I bought the scarf at an antique store during a trip to Dallas for our good friends' wedding. I used to wear it a bunch before it started lightly fraying around the edges. Now I get to enjoy it every day as it hangs in my bedroom. Also, my husband and I made the frame together (we have an affinity for DIY), so knowing a project we worked on turned out makes it that much better.
MMWIS: What is your number one piece of interior design advice?
AG: Don't get too matchy-matchy. I can't stand a living room that has the sofa with the matching loveseat and the three matching tables with the matching lamps...boring! It should take a long time to decorate a room because it should be filled with things that you love. There is one little cove by our fireplace that went empty for years because I was looking for the right statue or something to go in there. I finally found an antique hitching post that is completely unique and fits the space perfectly.