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East Idaho Parade of Homes Highlights

September 20, 2016

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This past weekend was the Parade of Homes in our area of Southeast Idaho. If you aren’t familiar, the Parade of Homes is a showcase of homes held annually in several regions throughout the United States. It is often presented by the local Home Builders Association and typically showcases high-end designer homes, both new construction and remodeled homes. Ours featured 14 different homes, by almost as many builders, scattered throughout the area. Chris was under the weather so I ended up hooking up with a friend and we were able to see a few homes Saturday night that we heard were the “must-see” ones. To be honest, no house was completely my style, but I was able to find inspiring ideas in almost every single space.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

The first one we went to was by far the best. I love the board and batten exterior siding. At first impression, I thought they should have done the whole roof in metal, like the accent parts, but when I walk inside, I realized this wasn’t the modern farmhouse I thought it was going to be. But the exterior still took my breath away. The back patio was nestled under a large pitch.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

And the contrasting siding (in both color and orientation) was very cool. But like I said, the inside was an unexpected, completely different style–mostly very traditional.

I loved this hallway with a barrel ceiling leading from the master bedroom to the bold office.

Idea to steal: A gallery of ornate frames painted the same color as the walls. 

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

The office was a favorite space of mine. While the furniture style isn’t what I would have chosen, that wall color, the built-ins and that light fixture (goodness, that light fixture!) made me want to move in.

Idea to steal: Dark green-y charcoal walls with a large brass fixture. Try Benjamin Moore Dark Pewter for a similar look. 

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

The kitchen and adjacent dining area were white and I loved seeing the exterior X windows mimicked in here. The beautiful wide planked light wood floors seem like the new standard. On the far left side, where the gold frames were mounted, was actually a hidden pantry door!

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

Idea to steal: Crisp vertical paneling is a fresh alternative to shiplap.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

Like most homes in our area, including ours, all the bedrooms (besides the Master) are downstairs. This home had three adorable girls’ rooms and one boy’s. My favorite of the girls was the one above. I usually would rather see a whole room wallpapered if it’s small, but in this case, the accent wall works beautifully because the adjacent paint color feels warm and complimentary.

Idea to steal: Polished nickel doorknobs feel fresh and classic!

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

The bedroom above had this attached bathroom. The marble subway tile surrounded the walls of the toilet/shower part of the room, but a soft blue paint warmed everything up on the vanity side. But perhaps my favorite part was the white penny tile floor. It looked expensive, but playful.

Idea to steal: Save money by using penny tile on the floor mixed with higher-end tile on the walls. 

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves JuliaEast Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

I’m always curious to see how other homes address their window wells, since it’s something that’s so visible from the rooms in our basement, and I can’t get over these wood lined ones! I think they’re planed railroad ties? I showed Chris this photo when I got home and he loved it too, and then said, “That’s a big job.” But it’s definitely on my list.

Idea to steal: Wood planked window wells. 

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

In between two more girls’ rooms there was a Jill and Jill bathroom with identical vanity and sink areas (the tile choices in here couldn’t be more perfect, right?) And just when I thought I was over black and white striped rooms, the shared shower/toilet space in between nailed the look.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

The last photos I snapped from this house were both art related. I loved these teeny vintage photos with a large white mat and gold framed. It really enticed everyone to come see what it was all about. Kim did something similar in her studio years ago.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

There was also a large map of Paris that spanned almost an entire wall in the basement and as I looked closer, I noticed it was comprised of many pieces pinned into the wall to make it look like one large piece of art on the cheap.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

The next house we went to was absolutely insane. Like, fell-down-the-rabbit-hole-in-Alice-in-Wonderland insane. It was massive, and definitely had a shabby-chic/industrial/rustic farmhouse vibe, with lots of explosions of color, but I only walked away with a few photos that I thought I could pull inspiration from.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

Idea to steal: Metal sheeting on the wall.

The walls in the great room were 2 parts white planked, 1 part brick and 1 part…metal! The metal was surprisingly warm and beautiful. And yes, those are large sprinkler wheels turned chandeliers.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

My friend and I actually kept getting lost in this house. There were so many corridors and hallways, but I didn’t mind losing my way in this one above. Any hallway that leads to a window seat stocked with books is a good thing.

I believe there were 3 staircases in this home, but the main one was covered completely with old, distressed doors. I really wanted them to open with scary surprises behind them–but no dice.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

There was a boy’s room upstairs that was completely covered in corrugated metal sheeting.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

And a sweet bathroom with softly painted planked ceilings.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

The last house I wanted to share had really pretty exterior details.

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

From the siding to the look-a-like shaker roof and the metal roof accents, a lot of thought went into the exterior. But the only picture I ended up taking inside was this accented stairwell wall. It did have a full sized basketball court inside.
East Idaho Parade of Homes | Chris Loves Julia

This house also had a full basketball court inside. It was pretty crazy. I wished the parade included different kinds of homes and styles and some smaller houses would be nice. (I think the smallest home we saw was 4000 sq ft!). But while I wasn’t overly impressed with the interior design, I did come away overall feeling inspired and there were little or big ideas I took away from almost everything we saw–I’m ready to tackle some bathrooms for sure! What was your favorite part?

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What do you think?

  1. Kevin says:

    I do agree with Peter someone did a fantastic jobs with those wooden floors.

  2. Peter says:

    I love wood floors, your connection to the wooden boards on the wall is great

  3. Mark says:

    I just love to watch those big American houses and it makes me want to move out of England and buy a spacious house like this.

  4. Lily says:

    Hi Julia: Thanks for sharing this – great inspiration!

    I’m looking at penny tile for my daughter’s bathroom re-do. Can you remember if the grout on these was white or light grey? (sorry for the weird question – but I’m in the middle of that weird anxiety I always get when I’m trying to pick out finishes and materials for a house project :) )

  5. SR168 says:

    Any idea of the prices for these houses – if only to make those of us in the expensive parts of England with our much-smaller-on-average-than-most-American-equivalent houses feel even worse?!!

  6. Great pictures and great recap. I definitely feel the same way; none were completely my style but there were a few great things to be inspired by at each one! Such a fun evening, thanks for coming with me!

  7. Laura says:

    I have a love/hate relationship with Parade of Homes houses. You’d think they’d be the latest in interior and architectural design, but the emphasis on “ornate and decadent” seems to toss everything over the top, making spaces almost cartoonish parodies of the latest trends. The excess can also be off-putting — so much wasted space and overdone details. Bleh.

    That said, I went to our local (Portland, OR) one a few weekends back and the homes seemed a little more in line with current trends, and the Utah Valley Parade of Homes can really bring it (based on photos I’ve seen). But again, I’m not a fan of huuuuuge homes. One I saw here had THREE laundry rooms, including one with a sign that read, “A Place All Her Own.” Um, yeah, if you’re giving me a space to myself, please DO NOT make it a laundry room, much less three. I like to pretend my laundry doesn’t exist.

  8. Kristen says:

    I love the dark blue exterior on that jumbo house! I’m not sure I’d ever be able to do a blue house but I think they’re so gorgeous and fun to look at! I also really like the idea of the empty frames on the wall…storing that idea for our guest bedroom. :)

  9. shannon says:

    It can be hard to relate to these HUGE houses since we live in a tiny apartment. The exterior on the last one is borderline McMansion – yikes!

    I appreciate how you pulled out the details that DO work for your style…and I especially love all the black/white tile combos from the first house. Thanks for sharing :)

  10. Brooke says:

    We went as well to the parade of homes and walked away saying the same thing. None if them really AMAZED us. I walked out of the Harker home and told my husband the inside surprised me. I expected it to feel more farmhouse style.
    But it was still fun to go.
    Now i am kicking myself that we didn’t go Saturday night so i could bump into you!
    Also, we did see some smaller homes. Maybe you just missed them?

  11. I think the farm house-y bathroom with the planked ceiling was my favorite of these. It’s a little too country for me, but that wood floor is phenomenal throughout all of those spaces and stairs. The stairway with the doors reminded me of something out of Harry Potter…

  12. Three cheers for tiny vintage photos!

  13. Stacie Harper says:

    Yes, I thought the home by Harker was the best as well. I’ve been kicking the idea of an “H” shaped house around…lots of opportunity for windows! Another idea in that home that I liked was the coat closet in the entrance hall. It was shallow with hooks instead of a rod. Did you notice at the “insane” house (totally agree by the way) that on the one end of the house for the basement window situation they used wood as well, but went up and back so that it kind of created steps. Then there were plants planted at each level on the “step” part. It was done on a pretty big scale but could be scaled down for “normal house” use. I think that’s a clever solution (if you’ve got the space around your house) because it gives a pretty view from the inside with the plants, while also eliminating the need for those little ladders if you’ve got a deep window well. The steps are built right in. How did you get pictures? When we went everywhere was crawling with people!

    • Julia says:

      I missed the coat closet and the step wells! Sounds so sweet! And I was very strategic in my photos. I went Saturday night and there were so, so many people but I would just wait for a slow moment and hold up my camera and then most people would actually see that and pause for a minute before walking through. It was tough though! And then I read in the brochure you aren’t supposed to have cameras! Oops! But every builder seemed a-kay, and even happy about it.

      • Stacie Harper says:

        Well shoot, we should have just asked and clicked away. Hubs was taking pictures with his phone, trying to be all sneaky shooting from the hip ha! Needless to say they didn’t turn out the best. Thanks for getting some good shots :)

  14. Emilyjane says:

    I want to see a parade home designed by you! I loved seeing what young house love did. The local builders should really tap into your talent (imo)

  15. Such great ideas, like hanging empty photo frames painted the same color as the wall to add architectural details to a hallway – who would’ve thought?! Is this event what caused you to re-consider your own curbside appeal that you mentioned in the podcast?

    And as someone who installed all-white tile in our new (old) home’s bathrooms – penny rounds in the shower and large arabesque tile on the floor – I can’t help but stress, “DO NOT DO IT!” hahaha But seriously, I do not recommend white tile on the floor or the shower. It’s been a nightmare to keep clean, and I can only imagine having little ones adding to the stress.

  16. Abby says:

    can you explain–like in a sentence or two–what a window well is or what the purpose is? i have seen you reference them in your home, so seeing the one above reminded me that i never fully understand the concept and am just curious. wondering if it’s something specific to your part of the country? have never heard of them here in georgia…

    • Julia says:

      It might be a regional thing, although I do remember having them when I was growing up in Pittsburgh, just not quite as prominent. Out here, most homes are built with a basement instead of going up because of the frost line. It might be 4 feet down to get below the frost line for building but only a few more feet will get you a whole ‘nother level so that’s what 99% of the homes do. That leaves us all with window wells. These holes that lead from the ground to the window in bedrooms to provide an escape route (ours have little ladders) and lots of light to the rooms in the basement.

  17. Kirsten says:

    I’m sort of in love with the chandelier in the picture with the book nook–and I think it’s actually the barrel of a washing machine??! Love it.

    But yikes, most of these homes seem just waaaay too large for my personal taste. I probably couldn’t get over the straight up excess to enjoy the details :). Did love the contrasting exterior on the first one though.

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