This Rustic A-Frame Cabin Is Full of Personal Style
A couple bring their decorating A-game to their vintage A-frame, filling it with outdoorsy treasures and typography that delivers a graphic punch.
Three years ago, Tamara and Ron Bailey bought a 1964 A-frame in the mountain town of Big Bear City, California. The design-savvy couple (she's creative director of an imports store; he hand-paints signs and wall decor for their business, One Red Buffalo) DIY'd an update, including painting and whitewashing individual plywood planks before laying them as flooring.
Then they had fun filling rooms with signs with a graphic edge and outdoorsy finds that remind Tamara of childhood vacations to national parks. She and Ron hop on their bikes and cruise around town, stopping at garage and estate sales in hopes of finding another gem. The cabin has allowed such creative expression that it makes the hunt fun no matter where they're looking.
The couple gained dining space by tearing out a cabinet, then reusing the countertop to create a table with a cutout to fit around a support beam. The new table is also a good spot to play a hand of cards or a board game. Red Turkish rugs and vintage signs add color to the neutral design of the space.
The backsplash is crafted from new ceiling tiles that the couple aged with hydrogen peroxide and salt before sealing. A white apron sink gives the kitchen a farmhouse vibe, as does the vintage farmers market sign above it. Dark cabinet hardware reflects the dark accents throughout the cabin's design.
Multifunctional pieces are key to the small cabin's livability. A bench in the living area serves as a coffee table and can be pulled outside for extra seating. The blue stool holds playing cards in its drawer, while a picnic basket next to the chair stores games. Camp blankets from the 1970s cover the chair cushions for extra texture and warmth.
A worn, turquoise side table adds to the antique charm of the cabin. A vintage fishing decoy hints at the woodsy theme of Tamara and Ron Bailey's cabin. Decoys are one of Tamara's favorite collectibles.
Tamara isn't a flea market purist—she happily mixes old with new, such as a resin deer head with Indian bread storage cans and a weathered painted cabinet. Worn wood oars are the perfect decor for long and narrow spaces, like door frames.
Tamara's formula for bedding in the A-frame is simple: a white matelassé coverlet draped with a wool camp blanket. The one in the guest bedroom is a 1930s point blanket from Orr Felt & Blanket Co. Variations in the stripe patterns and colors of the blanket and rug add visual interest.
Tamara used a cabinet door from a garage sale to frame a vintage Santa Fe railroad advertising poster in the guest bedroom. A paint-chipped metal bench and canister complement the natural wood textures in the space.
Scouting memorabilia nod to the couple's Eagle Scout son, while this book first piqued Tamara's interest in A-frames. Vintage finds like this run throughout the home and personalize the design to the homeowners and their interests.
Jaunts to flea markets in Texas turned up a cabin sign and a bear made from corrugated metal, which now grace a wall by the staircase. The rusted and worn texture of these pieces emphasize the natural wood ceiling and stairs.
Tamara snagged the vintage fishing creel at the Coburg Vintage & Antique Fair in Oregon, a show where she has good luck finding coastal-theme items. It anchors a display of lures she matted on burlap and framed.
To create a cozy alfresco retreat, the couple poured a concrete fire pit, then surrounded it with a daybed made from salvaged deck wood and a $20 pair of garage-sale Adirondack chairs. Wood stumps serve as stools and side tables, and a camping blanket transforms the daybed cushion into a cabin chic accent.