Name: Vanessa Mbonu
Location: Laurel, Maryland
Type of home: Townhouse
Size: 1500 square feet
Years lived in: 9 months, owned
Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: This is a new construction home that I purchased last year — right before the housing market went off. I owned a smaller townhouse before, which I shared with a roommate. That experience taught me A LOT and so I started casually looking at places I could grow into. I stumbled upon this development and the second I saw the model home I was sold. I didn’t look anywhere else.
This place was cozy but luxurious and most of all, I saw a future in it where my parents could downsize when they retired, and I could leave it as a rental property for my future kids. I just really liked the idea that I could see myself here for a while, but also future generations. It’s my Harlem brownstone in my little DC suburb.
I style my home in a similar manner as I style my clothes. I like to tell a story through design, color, and texture. Almost every piece is a conversation starter, and tells a story of where I was in life when I purchased it. I travel quite a bit so I’m always inspired by historical sites, traditional architecture, and boutique hotels. Every room is different but somehow keeps the conversation going from the last space. I have a very eclectic personality, so it makes sense that my home is a reflection of that.
Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: Refined maximalism meets eclectic chic
What is your favorite room and why? My favorite room is probably my bedroom because it’s where I start and end my day. It’s also the least chaotic. I love how much light it gets, and I was intentional about keeping it as minimal as I could so I can actually let my soul just be in there.
What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? A set of handmade rice bowls from my recent trip to Turkey.
Any advice for creating a home you love?Just buy what you love, and in the end it will all come together. Sometimes trying to stick to one design aesthetic can take the joy out of creating a space you genuinely like and that is uniquely you. Chances are the pieces you’re drawn to will have similar undertones, but you wouldn’t realize that until you see it all together.
This submission’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.