We talk a lot about “thoughtful living” on the site, but truthfully, it pertains mostly to entertaining and not giving yourself a hard time about your developing cooking skills or that you don’t casually have an estate to entertain on. But today you are going to meet the home & the gal that embodies thoughtful living in the home.
Meet Tess & Tim Eves. Newlyweds living in San Diego who approach decorating their home with such love and care that it’s hard not to feel inspired. Their hope is that when you enter their home you feel relaxed, loved, and encouraged to put your feet up and stay a while. No pretenses, nothing stuffy, just honest hospitality. Now that is something we can absolutely get behind. See what we mean below! xoxo, LK
Hi, I am Tess Eves! I am 28, currently live in San Diego, California with my husband & work as Administrator at the University of San Diego.
WE LOVE YOUR SPACE! WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PART?
Our bedroom. Going to bed and waking up next to my best friend is something I’ll never take for granted. We use our nights and mornings as our time – laying in the dark sharing big thoughts and ideas, or drinking coffee together while prepping for the day. The focal point of the room is our headboard, which I designed as the arch at our wedding, and was handcrafted by my husband and my father-in-law.
Circles are my favorite shape – they’re timeless and profound, and our headboard reminds me of the wholeness Tim and I each gained when we became partners. It’s a pretty fabulous memento from the most magical and sacred day of our lives, and I feel pretty lucky to get to see it every day.
WHAT HAS BEEN THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE IN YOUR SPACE?
For our generation, we’ve been raised in this era of immediacy and instant gratification. I feel so much pressure to have a perfect home straight out of the gates after viewing an endless barrage of perfect images on Pinterest, blogs and Instagram (they’re meant to be inspiring, but instead, this level of perfection feels confining!). I often get disheartened when I look around and see that unfinished corner of our apartment, our rental (read: ugly) cabinets, or my fiddle leaf fig that is a lot less lustrous than the one I just re-pinned.
At the end of the day, I must remember that my space is mine and it’s growing and changing. It will never be done. You shouldn’t be disappointed that your home isn’t identical to your flawless pinboards- it’s yours, and you’re cultivating (present tense!) an awesome space. Our place is lived in: we get dust bunnies under the couch, shoes get abandoned by the front door, and appliances clutter my kitchen counters. I’ve had to recalibrate my expectations, because I don’t live in a style shoot, and I shouldn’t have my dream home at 28.
I am a working woman, a graduate student, a wife, a daughter, a friend, an artisan, a traveller, and an activist. The complexity of my life and identities means perfection isn’t attainable in any of those realms, and maybe it never will be. My favorite artist Henri Matisse once said, “There is nothing more difficult for a truly creative painter than to paint a rose, because before he can do so, he has first to forget all the roses that were ever painted.” Forget those Pinterest boards, those ideas of what you should have or be, and just do you, the best you can, at this stage of your life.
WE LOVE YOUR APPROACH ON A LIVING, BREATHING HOME. TELL US YOUR DELIGHTFULLY LIVED-IN STYLE:
This is my husband and my first home together, so there was a lot of reassessing to reach a synergy of styles. He’s a minimalist, monochromatic, mid-century kind of guy, and I’m a bohemian, color explosion, jungle lair type gal. Truly, we stumbled upon our couple style amidst wedding planning– our vibe was Midcentury Bossanova. It’s our favorite genre of music (Brazilian Jazz from the 60s): sensual, mellow and fun; and for me, it evokes imagery of midcentury Brazilian beaches: saturated fuchsias and emerald greens paired with sandy peaches, creams and metallics.
This concept truly drove my vision for the rest of the apartment. We both love to entertain, and wanted a space that was inviting and most importantly, felt lived in.
YOU SEEM LIKE A FANTASTIC HOSTESS, ANY SECRETS FOR GREAT HOSPITALITY?
Tim and I are big craft cocktail people, and our endless shelves of stemware prove it! We love to have a signature drink prepared for when people come over. Invest time and thought into one or two details and make them memorable: our ever-changing signature drink always makes a big impression (and will help prevent you from dashing to the kitchen thinking of drinks for each guest!). Chill your glassware, always garnish, and then sit back and enjoy.
It’s easy to forget that the moments I have right now- the casual, in between moments, the late night laughs over dinner and drinks with friends – are the moments I’ll reminisce on when I’m older. My mom is the quintessential entertainer – she works diligently to prepare for an event, thinking through every detail to ensure her guests are comfortable – and then on the day of, she lets her thorough planning run its course and she is present. She soaks up every second of time with her guests and I aspire to that kind of intentionality.
YOUR HOME IS THOUGHTFUL & WE WANT TO MOVE IN. ANY DESIGN ADVICE THAT HOLDS TRUE?
My parents have always had a beautifully styled home and always encouraged me to be patient and wait for the right pieces, and not run out and buy the “right-now” pieces. My parents’ home was filled with art they purchased while traveling, or antiques that were passed down generations. In candid conversations with my mom, she’ll admit they may not be what she’d buy again, but she still loves each piece, because it tells a story- it is part of her story, a manifestation of a stage of life.
Designer Erin Flett says, “Collect things you love, that are authentic to you, and your house becomes your story.” I love that. I truly try and only bring things into my home that feel right – we have artwork or textiles from our travels that may not fit into a typical styled Pinterest interior, but they’re part of us, and what is a home, if not a reflection of the people living in it
ONE LAST QUESTION, WHAT IS YOUR ENTERTAINING TIP YOU SWEAR BY?
Candles! Lighting is huge in setting the mood and tone of an event, and I have no less than 10 candles burning during a party. They throw their warm yellow light around in such a delicate and unobtrusive way, that you can’t help but feel a bit cozier. I’m digging tapers at the moment, and have them scattered in mismatching pairs throughout the house.
Maybe I’m off my rocker, but I think people are more honest and willing to engage in dimly lit spaces – it requires people to get a little closer, to share a little more- so I always prefer to host an evening event, and always dim our overhead light fixtures (to the dismay of my husband who says “I can’t see”… you can’t win them all)!
Photography by Affect Visual