Order The Bee Cottage Story

Already in its sixth printing! Inspired by Frances’ House Beautiful column, what began as a decorating book evolved into a memoir with lots of beautiful photos and a compelling personal story.

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Finally, the dadgum book on Bee Cottage is off to press and ready for pre-order here (for signed copies from Frances), and also at AmazonBarnes & Noble, and IndieBound. Yay!

Bee Cottage is my house in East Hampton. I bought it in 2008 and spent two years renovating and decorating. It isn’t finished or perfect, but what is? And who would want to live there?

Bee front exterior
Bee Cottage

This is a modest stucco cottage built in the early 20th century.

Bee living room
Bee Cottage living room
Bee Cottage dining room
The dining room is filled with things I love: books, botanicals, and shells.

But for a porch made into a kitchen and the garage into a room I don’t know when, the floor plan is virtually unchanged.

Bee Cottage kitchen
The long, narrow galley kitchen.
Bee Cottage kitchen
Breakfast table and a rag-tag collection of blue and white porcelain.

I did add a large porch on the back, with considerable landscaping and a garden, but the house is very much as it was.

Bee garden room
Formerly the garage, now the “garden room,” as it gives onto the porch and garden.
Bee Cottage master bedroom
Master bedroom. The half-canopy disguises where the wall angles in under the roof.
Bee Cottage dresser
The old fireplace niche was converted into a dressing table. I did a quickie collage with old calendar illustrations.

Some houses just are what they are, and you go with that. With tremendous help from designer Tom Samet, I decorated accordingly with a traditional, cottage-y feel, part Cotswolds-part Provence.

Bee Cottage guest room
Bee Cottage guest room, Leontine linens.
Bee Cottage guest bath
Guest bath, painted to resemble a beach cabana
Bee study and dressing room
Dressing room, study, and bedroom in a pinch.
Bee Cottage desk
Dressing room and study
Bee Cottage window box
Boxwood, pachysandra, and ivy

A glorified garden shed is sort of how I think of it. Keeps the house (and me) from getting uptight. The point of a house, after all, is to shelter body and soul.

You can see more of Bee Cottage, and the garden – the garden! – on my Instagram and Pinterest boards, too. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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