Dreamy Little House
Once upon a time... discover Daniel Blagovich's fairy tale haven
A few years ago, Daniel Blagovich was no ordinary high school student. Instead of aiming for Silicon Valley or business school, he spent the summer dreaming up a creative project that would truly change his life. His vision was simple: to build a unique garden studio in his parents' property. Although they needed some convincing, he finally managed to get the go ahead and he immediately got down to work. The effort paid off and now the 23 year old fine art graduate proudly owns ‘My Little White House’, which is the most charming little haven you can possibly imagine. Reminiscent of an enchanted Victorian summer house, the new building looks as if it has always been there, forgotten by time among the maple trees, but it was entirely built from salvaged materials and dumpster finds.
Daniel grew up working in an antique store since he was 13 and so he was keen to find his treasures in auctions, garage/estate sales, and Craigslist ‘free stuff’ classifieds. Following months of hard work, inside and out, the result is stunning and now the
170 square foot studio, which is located in Seattle, has been the setting of glamorous magazine shoots and has a large following in Instagram.
As we were so impressed by Daniel’s vision for beauty and his love for antiques, we were intrigued to find out more about his journey and his dreamy home:
What inspired you to create My Little White House?
I wanted to create a little garden sanctuary to enjoy a fire indoors in the winter time. I came across Sandy Foster's Shabby Streamside Studio and I completely fell in love with the dreamy all white concept.
How did you go about the project?
I drew out some rough plans of how I wanted the studio to look and I then began by pouring a cement foundation, erecting the walls, and finally lining the interior and exterior with salvaged windows, doors, and wood that I had collected from garage sales and dumpsters around Seattle.
What challenges did you encounter along the way?
The chimney was a large undertaking. I had collected hundreds of bricks from different demolition sites around Seattle over the previous 5 years or so to use ‘someday’ and I was excited when this project came up so I could finally use them! I had no previous experience with masonry work, but after hours of helpful YouTube videos and researching Victorian chimney patterns, I began building the double-sided fireplace and chimney. This is the part of the build that certainly took the most time and planning.
Why was it important for you to use salvaged materials and dumpster finds?
I have always had a fascination with old houses and antique items because of the mystery and sense of permanence that they represent. When I decided to build My Little White House I knew that I needed to bring some of that old ‘soul’ into this newly constructed shell in order for it to feel grounded in its environment.
How would you describe your decorative style - the style that
you have used for My Little White House?
For My Little White House, it was my goal to collect and curate objects in a way that make the studio into a reliquary of sorts. I wanted the things that fill the space to be full of curiosity, intricacy, and history, while being unified by their monogrammatic colour pallet. I am a sucker for chippy paint, French gothic carvings, white marble, old linen, herringbone floors, old English fireplaces, 19th century windows, and iron urn planters. I tried as much as I could to incorporate these favorite things of mine into this space!
What is the most surprising feature about My Little White House?
That the teeny-tiny fireplace is actually functional! I found this antique Victorian iron bedroom fireplace on eBay.co.uk and I had to have it! It was a difficult task arranging a courier to deliver such a heavy, oddlyshaped object from overseas. But after several weeks of back and forth missed phone calls from a different time zone, the fireplace arrived and was installed in the chimney breast shortly after that!
What advice would you give to someone who would like to create a haven such as yours?
If you have a good understanding of what items bring you the most joy in life, by all means assemble a space that allows you to be surrounded by them!
If you don't possess the skills to build a structure from the ground up, find an existing space in your home or yard that you can convert into a special refuge for yourself. If you are feeling adventurous, draw up some plans and take them to a local builder, or someone you know who could help you fabricate a space. It doesn't have to be large to be beautiful.I live by a very simple philosophy: find things that bring you joy, and surround yourself with them.
Welcome to my sanctuary: Daniel Blagovich (left) in front of his dreamy Little White House built and decorated with salvaged materials