Vintage Cabinet – The Story of Iris

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My husband is the king of metaphors and analogies. Everything is symbolic, everything has meaning. He is also the king of nicknames. Our daughter, Karrly Jo, for example, has been christened “Snarly Toe”. (I didn’t say the nicknames were always flattering!)

And so it is pretty fitting that one of our pieces of furniture has both a nickname and a deeper meaning.

Meet Iris.


My husband and I do not get the credit for naming her. Iris is actually the creative idea of a friend of mine, Carrie Brusven, founder and owner of Gathered Boutique Rentals  here in Fargo, North Dakota. (Cowboy and I rented many amazing things from Carrie for our wedding in 2013. If you are looking for a unique look for your next event – she is seriously the woman to call!)

We rented Iris from Carrie in 2014 to stage the house we flipped. (Refer to Our Flip House Story for all the details of that saga!) In fact, here is Iris in the dining room of the flip house looking all regal and gorgeous.

Flip Dining

Oh, Iris. You’ve seen it all, haven’t you?

When the flip house sold, we thanked Iris for her help and sent her back to live with Carrie for more vintage rental adventures.

Fast forward to the current chaotic hoopla we are embarking on with the opening of our new decor store, Grace 1972, (see my last blog post Making Things Pretty) and a visit I had with Carrie as I planned and plotted my shop’s inventory. And guess what Carrie told me?

Iris was for sale.

Of course,  I bought her on the spot! And promptly moved her into our parlor for staging photos. Because of course, she would be a shining star for my shop. Here was her little photo shoot in our parlor. I filled her with pretty pieces that will be for sale at Grace 1972 and start snapping away. Iris is a great model, she was so cooperative. And such a natural in front of the camera:


This corner of our parlor had always been a little off. I’d shoved a shelf there but never loved it. But once Iris moved in? I really loved this space. In fact, here are some angles of my house I’ve been reluctant to show because I detest the mirrored closed in my dining room and the mirrored back splash on the built in hutch (can you say barn doors and subway tile? In that order? At least – that is the plan!).


A few little throw pillows in a wire basket (life is always better with pillows!) and some winter decor sprinkled throughout to make it through to spring and this space was in business.


But alas, you can probably already guess what happened.

Cowboy came home, took one look at Iris in the parlor and announced definitively, “I don’t think we should sell her, babe.” He was silent for a moment (which is a big deal because my Cowboy is a talker) and then announced, “Iris is us, babe. She’s a little tattered but she’s still amazing. She was with us through the flip house. Then she was gone for a little while (refer to my blog post about Cowboy and I separating and almost divorcing in late 2015 in Rebuilding Us) but now she’s back. And everything fits together even better than it did before.

Iris needs to stay.

And so it was decided. Iris will not be joining the rest of the inventory at Grace 1972. She is going to stay right here. A symbol of the old becoming new again.

Thank you for stopping by my little blog as I detail my design style, our family’s little life nuggets, and my quest to make little corners of my world (and yours!) just a little prettier each and every day.

Peace, Joy and Blessings, 


Where you go I will go. Where you stay I will stay. 

Ruth 1:16

P.S. Do not be dismayed by the fact that you cannot purchase Iris. I have a FANTASTIC white vintage cabinet that is even larger than Iris (complete with chicken wire doors just like this!) that will be styled and full of the sweetest vintage/farmhouse/rustic pieces you’ve ever seen when the doors of Grace 1972 open the beginning of February. It is very “Iris – esque” – I assure you. So if you love Iris, you can scoop up her sister for your own home in a few short weeks.

Shooting for a February 4th soft opening. The location will be announced soon. Follow me on Instagram (audramehl) – I post Insta Stories regularly showcasing the space (exposed brick, high ceilings, tons of light and a FIREPLACE) and the progress we are making to transform this space into the coziest best shop ever. We were covered in paint all week this week and I am very POOPED, let me tell you. But it is looking gorgeous. If you like pillows, coffee and sitting by a cozy fire – you are going to LOVE Grace 1972!!!

Can’t wait to share this dream with all of you very soon. XOXOXOXO!


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