California Country Style

The other day, I discovered an awesome blog written by an gal named Kelley…

She and her family used to live here, in Corona Del Mar, California…

Kelley spent four fun-filled years decorating the place from top to bottom…

But on September 29th of last year, she published a blog post titled SOLD. Kelley confessed that they had recently decided the time was right for a new challenge, and that they had sold the house completely furnished. Like, as in, they left every single thing in the house for the new owner. Pretty wild, huh? (I’ve entertained the idea of doing that with our house someday, so it was neat to read about her experience!)

Today, Kelley and her hubby are renting a condo while they search for their next home. They’re also in the process of renovating a ranch house in Ojai, California. Kelley said, “it was a total mess, but exactly what we wanted for a weekend getaway.

(Kelley’s Ojai, CA fixer upper)

Ojai is about 25 miles south of Santa Barbara, and about 12 miles inland from Ventura and the beach. The population is about 8,000 and the valley itself is only about 12 miles from end to end. There isn’t a single mall or parking meter to be found, and its winding roads are lined with native California Oaks- most of which are 80+  years old and because of strict preservation regulations. Each lot in their community is at least one acre and is surrounded by countryside dotted with orange, lemon and tangerine orchards. She says buying their Ojai fixer was their “crazy and exciting attempt to capture a small slice of the country life just a few hours from work, and not so far from the city that you can’t find a Home Depot near by“.

So far, they’ve pretty much just concentrated on fixing up the outside areas of the house. The front porch got some fresh paint, a floor full of stunning stones, and a whole bunch of neat, flea market style decor…

I can hardly wait to see what Kelley does with the inside of the house! Here are some of her ‘before’ shots…

They’ve just started to renovate this bathroom

If you’d like to see how it all turns out, stayed tuned to Kelley’s blog: The Polished Pebble!

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  1. Emily says

    I love when you find new delicious design blogs and share them. I just added the the polished pebble to my blog reader. Thanks!

  2. says

    that’s awesome. i admire those who sell their houses completely furnished! it’s kinda cool cause you get to start all over with a new idea/design. perfect for the design junkie who wants a challenge thanks for sharing i’m gonna check out her blog!

  3. says

    I have followed Kelley’s blog for a long time. How lucky was that new homeowner to get all her gorgeous furnishings and art? She is amazingly talented and sweet. Glad to see you feature her!

  4. says

    Holy cow. I don’t know if I would be so brave to just walk away. On one hand, it sounds very refreshing and exciting (let’s start anew!) but I get sooo attached and have a lot of family items and furniture. Good for her, though. On to a new adventure!

    I’ve also added her blog to my reader. Looking forward to seeing the new house take shape!

  5. says

    I just love Kelley!! I’ve been a follower of her blog & she has amazing taste! I’m glad you discovered her and now many more will enjoy her blog as I do!! xoxo’s Nancy

  6. says

    Thanks for sharing Kelly’s blog with us Layla. I can’t get over how lovely her home turned out. It’s gorgeous! I’m heading over now to become a follower.


  7. says

    I am at lost for words. No wonder the new owners wanted everything in the house she sold. The house is great. She has the decorating touch. Thanks for posting the photos.

  8. says

    OH. MY. WORD. I am DYING over her house! DYING. The yellow quilt…the sofas…the signage…the laundry room…ALL of it. LOVE her look and style. Officially obsessed. thanks for that one. ;)

  9. says

    I have heard of this being done with vacation homes, but never with one so full of treasures. What a wonderful excuse to shop for new/old items! Makes you take a look around your own home and ask yourself iff it’s something you could do……?

  10. says

    thanks for sharing.. that was a beautiful home! and i love OJAI!! such a gorgeous location! {we used to live in Oxnard, next to Ventura}

  11. says

    What a beautiful house! That seems like one instance when you would not infact want to clear out all personal effects, as the realtors tell you to!

  12. says

    Oh, I totally love her style. You can tell that each and every piece in her home has a story.

    And every time I’m at Home Depot I see that door. My hubby and I call it the “pirate door”. I’ve always wondered what it would look like on a house. Thanks for sharing these pics!

  13. says

    WOW!!! This is so totally AWESOME! I really wanted this light for my kitchen… So this has totally made my day…Thank you for hosting such a wonderful giveaway! I love your blog and all the inspiring things you guys do. Your Blogger Friend, Aja

  14. says

    that would be one way to not get too attached to your things!! absolutely gorgeous! although i have to say i am kind of a sucker for the ‘this was my great grandma’s” ‘this i found on that little weekend getaway’ memories that live happily next to my pretties. but i can imagine if you aren’t into that– what a freeing feeling as you’re off to start over! :)

  15. says

    Well…I’m pretty much speachless right now…that never happens!
    I can’t thank you enough Layla, for the wonderful feature of my work and house. You did such an amazing job really telling our story. I hope all of your readers stop by The Polished Pebble often…I am so happy to have some new friends! Your self included of course…

    SWAK Layla! ; 0 )

    xo kelley

  16. says

    Kelley is utterly UH-mazing! Not only is she the bomb at decorating, gardening, etc. etc., but she is a kindred spirit too :) Ojai is gorgeous. Quite a few famous people have homes there. There is a reason for that!
    Anyways, love that you featured my Cali gal pal. She is truly a gem :)

    ps – thank you for the coupon!! I am off to hopefully order another light from them :D

  17. says

    That was one of the most beautiful houses I’ve ever seen! Lucky is the person that bought that lock, stock and barrel!

  18. says

    You’ve put together a really beautiful snapshot of Kelley’s homes. I followed along as she showed each room but seeing everything together is a special treat. I guess I should be following you too! Steve

  19. says

    I live next door to Corona del Mar and I don’t know if I could do it because their house was likely a BLOCK from the ocean!!!! That said, the quiet, country kind of life is calling me more and more.

    Thanks for sharing this!

  20. kelly says

    oh my goooooodness! that yellow quilt and striped rug, and the buckets, and pillows, and collection of prints in the dining room, and the kitchen cupboard, and the JARS, and that laundry room that i would die for, and then after venturing over to the blog – that GARDEN at her new project!!! glory!
    do you suppose her buyer is ready to sell it now? ha ha.
    thank you for sharing another place for me to get addicted.
    kelly in georgia

  21. says

    Her house was simply amazing! I can’t wait to see what she does with the fixer-upper!
    I had an apothecary chest similar to the one in her family room built for my sister’s cabin. I love that piece!

  22. says THANK YOU for sharing – you are the reason I have black cabinets and now Kelly is the reason we are ripping out the uppers for open shelving. So inspiratational!!!

  23. Geri Greco says

    O.k. Layla.
    I will list your house with my new license and buy it too…..complete of course
    with all the Layla & Kevin magic included.

  24. Jamie says

    Layla & Kelly,
    Will you be my friend? Please check yes or no.

    Love the Polished Pebble! Definitely added to my reader…

  25. Kim in MD says

    I would have bought Kelley’s house totally furnished! It’s gorgeous! I can’t wait to see what she does with her new home! :-)

  26. says

    Wow, Layla, I can’t imagine walking away from that amazing home. It would be fun to start a brand new adventure, though. :) Thanks for sharing Kelley’s home and blog.

  27. Penny G. Malone says

    I’m going to add “The Polished Pebble” to my favorites list, also. I can not believe she could move out and leave all of those PRICELESS treasures!! Yay for the new owners though, right? I enjoy reading your blog =) I look forward to reading it every day.

  28. Alima says

    Wow! That first house was GORGEOUS!! I am still drooling over that kitchen! She has amazing style – I am so jealous of her talent! I can’t imagine how hard it was to leave that home. But I bet she will make the next one just as amazing!
    Definitely going to be following her blog! Good find Layla!

  29. says

    whoah…thanks for sharing! She has a BEAUTIFUL HOME! Of all things- I am DROOLING over that laundry sink!
    I have been searching fro one like that for when we finish the basement! GAW- geous!

  30. says

    I’ve been reading Kelley’s blog for some time and I love it. She’s certainly got a great eye and is a lovely person.
    Great feature Layla.

  31. says

    Such a beautiful home! I cannot believe they sold the home and everything inside! I might have wept over some of those grain sack pillows, the bottle drying rack, etc. lol I think it’s a fun & awesome concept to start fresh like that. (And their ‘fixer upper’ getaway home has such potential!)

    Thanks for introducing,

  32. says

    Kelley is amazing!
    I’m fortunate to be able to have her as a friend and future neighbor!
    Her blog was one of the main reasons we decided to move to Ojai. Her home there is truly magical.
    Thank you for introducing your readers to Kelley’s beautiful world.


  33. says

    That is so sweet of you to write about someone else’s blog – I love that – and The Polished Pebble too. I’ve visited there many times.

    Fun blog you have too! Stop by mine when you get a chance :-)

  34. says

    Ohhhhh, I am soooooo happppppyyyyyy I landed here today (jumped from PWs site). I JUST started a new blog on renovating a CONVENT and raising a family, LORD HAVE MERCY. Cool to see we have some things in common — I have 2 kids we adopted, and live in the not so deep south – Atlanta, GA. I did grow up in Bama though. Come see me. I’m having fun!

  35. says

    That will be a fun blog to follow! I have to say, I could never do that! I am way too attached to my stuff. Not saying that’s a good thing, just the truth. For me, esp because I made a lot of stuff in my house, or fixed it up so I’m kind of emotionally attached to it.

  36. says


    Thank you for sharing that incredible home! Kelley’s style is impeccable – so fresh, fun, and sophisticated. My husband and I are renovating our 1930’s cottage and blogging about it. I’d love to send you some before and afters when we’re done! Hop on over if you have a minute :)


  37. says

    I absolutely love Kelly’s house in Corona Del Mar! Oh to live by the beach again…her kitchen is to die for with the cararra counter, and the living room accessories are fun and beachy!

  38. Tina K says

    Love her style! She is definitely a talented lady. What I cannot fathom…CANNOT….is that she left all that stuff behind. I would be thinking “but, I dug and found that at a thrift store really cheap” or “so and so helped me paint this and hang it up”. Just the memories of decorating would be too much for me to let it all go. Kudos to her though!

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