Inside Home Grown Owner Liz Bloom’s Elegant Home in Bryn Mawr

A special suburban home provides a smooth city-to-suburbs transition.

the soothing gray color scheme continues in the master bedroom

resourcesinterior designer: Diana Hollander, Clipboard Interiors, Newtown Square, (610) 304-7718,
home accessories: Home Grown, Haverford, (610) 642-3601,

Liz Bloom has been living in Bryn Mawr for two years, yet she still craves (among other things) the walk-around convenience of her old Queen Village neighborhood. “We miss everything you can imagine about city living,” says Bloom.

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Even so, she admits there’s plenty to like about the Main Line, too. Like many families with young children, the Blooms were looking for better schools. She’s happy to be just a short drive of Home Grown, the Haverford boutique she’s owned and operated or 15 years. And city living didn’t leave much room for a big backyard and a pool.

“As you get older, your list gets shorter of what you want in a house,” says Bloom. “This house gave us everything we wanted on that list.”

 A favorite restaurant in Center City inspired the white subway tiles and dark grout in the kitchen“keep an open mind”

With its soothing gray color scheme and enviable cook’s kitchen, Bloom’s Bryn Mawr French Colonial home looked drastically different when she and her husband bought it two years ago. “We wanted certain things, and our realtor told us to keep an open mind because we might not be able to find what we were looking for on our budget,” says Bloom. “We needed to be prepared to take on a project.”

Built in 1965, the house had a ton of potential, though it would take a major cosmetic overhaul to realize it. The kitchen hadn’t been updated in more than 40 years. “I have no sense of design when it comes to structural aspects and spatial planning,” says Bloom. “I’m more visual with accessories and finishing touches.”

For the rest, she hired Newtown Square-based interior designer Diana Hollander, who’d worked on Bloom’s Philadelphia home. “Liz is extremely stylish, and she’s willing to take some risks in design,” Hollander says.
a trio of open shelves in the family room displays items from the owner’s home accessories boutique

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“a sense of timelessness”

One of the Blooms’ few special requests involved the kitchen. “Liz’s husband loves to cook, and he’s serious about it,” says Hollander. “This wasn’t just a kitchen that had to look good. It needed to function very well.”

On the couple’s design wish list: an industrial cook’s kitchen with a French feel, a functional workspace and plenty of storage. To open up the space, Hollander eliminated a wall that divided the kitchen and a small den. Inspired by the white Subway tiles and dark grout at Oyster House, one of their favorite Center City restaurants, the couple duplicated the treatment on their new kitchen’s walls.

To balance out the industrial feel of the commercial stainless steel hood and handmade steel shelf over the Wolf range, Hollander added vintage elements, including antique chicken-wire glass in the cabinets and a reclaimed wood beam over the island. A pair of marine lights hangs above the island.
vintage marine lights hang above the kitchen’s center island

a haven”

At Home Grown, Bloom and her clients share a love of entertaining. “Since our life is so hectic, with having a young daughter and both of us working full time, I wanted to come home and have our house be somewhat of a haven for us, and very comfortable for guests,” she says.

Since her previous city house had an open floor plan, Bloom is now thrilled to have a separate formal dining room—even if the space is far from formal. “I knew we were going to have kids sitting in here having
dinner with us, so I wanted everything to be functional and not have anything that I was afraid would be ruined,” says Bloom.

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To withstand inevitable spills and scratches, Bloom opted for farmhouse table from Restoration Hardware. To bring an architectural element to the space, Hollander used thin wood slats to create a grid pattern on the walls, which are painted a soft gray.

For her part, Bloom thinks gray brings a sense of serenity to the home. That in mind, she kept the combination living/family room comfortable with touches of elegance. The multiple seating areas include two contemporary Dellarobbia chairs from her previous home, plus a new couch and a wing chair, and various accessories Bloom has collected over the years.

The neutral color palette continues in the master bedroom, with crisp white bedding, a tufted headboard, accent pillows and rugs—all in varying shades of gray. A fireplace adds to the casually romantic feel of the room.

“It’s an amazing transformation,” says Hollander of the work that was done on the home. “It’s full of this kind of beautiful energy. It’s calm, very inviting and a place where you want to hang out.”

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