House Tour: Bright, Preppy Style

Sneak a peek inside the colorful home of Rachel Shingleton, the blogger and designer behind Pencil Shavings Studio.

The Entryway Sets the Stage

The entryway to our home is definitely the jumping-off point for how I designed the rest of the house. It's neutral in design with white furniture and subtly striped walls, but it provides pops of color that are repeated through the rest of our home. Aqua, grass green, and white are the anchor colors for the entire house. I then add in pops of other complementary colors to accent. And, of course, I had to have a bit of my signature stripe somewhere in there, too.


Pencil Shavings Studio

A Jewel Box Living Room

Immediately off the entryway is our formal living room. This completely custom color took several rounds to get just right, but it sets the tone for the rest of the house. Navy blue and gold accents keep the room feeling fresh and not too formal.

A Preppy Kitchen with Pops of Color

This past summer we did a quick and easy makeover by having our existing cabinets and family room repainted and new backsplash tile laid in the kitchen. It was previously a country French look, but we wanted something that felt a little more modern and polished. The island was painted Benjamin Moore's Lucerne to add a pop of color, and the glossy chrome hardware strikes the exact graphic bold look we were going for while still staying somewhat traditional. Going all white can be scary sometimes -- you have to get super intentional about adding in color or else it gets bland. But I wanted the cabinets and walls to virtually fade away so it would feel open and airy.

Modern, Colorful Breakfast Nook

This may be my most favorite corner in the house. I tracked down a vintage Saarinen-style table here in Oklahoma City to pair with red Tolix chairs. The table is so versatile. You can pair almost any chair with it to create a one-of-a-kind look. Artist Erin Cooper of Pippin & Pearl created the gorgeous painting I commissioned to hang in the space. My best family memories happen at this table.

Pops of Color

Color is my favorite thing on the planet; I've never met a color I didn't love! So, naturally, I have all kinds of colorful dishes. I simply adore how color pops against white! My collection of colorful latte bowls and cake stands are kept close at hand in the glass-door cabinets. I found the "eat" sign at a cute little shop when I was in college.

A Colorful Family Room

We spend more time in our combined kitchen and family room than any other room in the house. And the all-white mantel made for a gorgeous makeover -- it used to be dark black. It's the perfect backdrop for colorful accents, grounded by navy and clover green. I wanted this room to be kid and pet-friendly, without sacrificing our sense of style. It's a fun collection of new and vintage pieces like my estate sale coffee table that only cost $15 and is practically indestructible. It got a fresh breath of life with some glossy navy spray paint. My son colors and plays on it all the livelong day, and it looks as good as new. A total bargain!

Family-Friendly Upholstery

These navy chairs are my latest favorite find. We had them custom made in the navy colorway, which is my favorite neutral. Practically any color looks amazing against navy, and I knew I wouldn't get sick of it anytime soon. The Moroccan pouf ottomans are perfect for us. We use them as seating, as ottomans, and even as little side tables. I wish I'd had these when my son was a baby; we would've avoided a lot of bumps and bruises!

Family Room Mantel & Gallery Space

The mantel has become a revolving art gallery for us. I painted the gouaches that are framed there, but who knows what I might switch them out for next! They feel modern and fun right now and are a beautiful contrast against the white mantel. Since the hearth has a nice little shelf, it also works as additional seating when we have guests over. Pull up a pouf, so it can double as a coffee table!

An Easy IKEA Hack

One of the most popular posts on my blog is how to create a super easy but high-impact hack. Similarily, these IKEA Vittsjo shelves were originally black, but a quick coating of liquid gold leaf made them the perfect pair of bookshelves in the family room, flanking my custom-painted campaign dresser from Etsy. Colorful books, accessories, and stereo equipment are now happily at home!

Fun & Functional Storage

Since it's a family room, we naturally have oodles of toys and things that take up residence. The vintage campaigner dresser I found on Etsy has been the perfect storage unit for building blocks, art supplies, DVDs, and tiny toys that somehow seem to end up everywhere on the rug. The big stripe storage totes are perfect for blankets and pillows -- we love to cozy up and make forts!

Mix & Match Patterns in the Master Bedroom

Our master bedroom is colorful, but we kept it soothing by anchoring it in softer tones of our signature colorways. By having lots of white space with the upholstered headboard and bedding, it still stays grown up. I drew the silhouettes of each member of the family and had them framed above the bed.


Photo by Amy Sargeant Photography

A Striped Bedroom for a Redheaded Boy

Stripes galore! Hand-painted stripes were easy with the help of painter's tape and a ruler. It's the perfect pale blue and adds so much whimsy to my son Jude's room.

Colorful Bonus Room

Since I blog and run my online shop from home, I wanted to create a shared living space in our bonus room where I could work and Jude could play. It's colorful but still anchored in white and navy. Big storage totes provide space for toys, and the gallery wall stays neutral without being overwhelming by keeping all the frames white.

Washi Tape for Walls

Would you believe those stripes are actually made of washi tape? Easy to put up, and even easier to remove, washi tape allows you to get creative without having to commit longterm. It's the perfect solution for renters or the color/commitment-phobic.

A Space to Create

Nothing makes me happier than getting to share this creative space with my family. There's no TV up here on purpose -- I want this to be a place where we can all be together to create something beautiful. I love that everything is kid-friendly but still stylish.

Bonus: Shop My Style

Bring cheer to your home with my preppy, colorful product picks from Shop BHG.


Shop my style!


- Rachel Shingleton, Pencil Shavings Studio

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