I've had the goal for a long time to highlight the gorgeous homes that are scattered throughout Charm City. One of my favorite things to do is to walk around town at night with the hopes that I can peer inside homes that are lit from within and get a little glimpse into historic homes with fantastic design (Creepy? Maybe just a little....). My goal is to give you some design and architecture inspiration while showcasing the fun, quirky, beautiful homes that you may not otherwise be able to see.
We're kicking off this "A Peek Inside" series with the home of a friend and preferred business partner, Valentina Massa. Valentina is a rockstar loan originator who also happens to have fantastic taste and a beautiful eye for design and photography. She was born and raised in Maryland and recently sold her home in Greektown to move in to the MOST charming apartment in Remington.
Let’s take A PEEK INSIDE
M: How long have you lived in your home?
V: I have only lived in my home for a little over 9 months now!
M: What drew you to this neighborhood?
V: I love Remington because of the proximity to downtown Baltimore without being as busy – it’s also relatively walkable and filled with lots of amazing small businesses!
M: What's your favorite neighborhood shop or restaurant?
V: This is a tough one for me – as I love most that exist. Some favorite neighborhood shops would be: Homebody General, Good Neighbor/The Greenhouse at Good Neighbor, and Angels ate Lemons! A few favorite neighborhood restaurants would be Clavel, Yama Sushi, 29th St Tavern, and anywhere serving pasta – depending on my mood! 😉
M:What's your favorite room or element in your home and why?
V: My favorite room in my home is probably the living space – my kitchen, dining and living rooms are one decently sized open space. When choosing the furniture and décor, I tried to separate these enough to feel like different spaces but also wanted to keep a consistent flow from one area to the other. I wanted to initially rush out and change everything at once because sometimes my brain works this way. However, I took some time in the space (almost 5 months) until I started adding little things here or there and hanging art. This allowed me to truly determine the functionality of the space before jumping to conclusions of what they “should be”. It ended up as an open space is filled with lots of things I care about: tons of natural light, books, quite a few plants, and a mix of both mid-century modern and traditionally-styled furniture.
M: What is your design style and where do you draw your design inspiration from?
V: I would say my design style is a mix of mid-century modern and traditional. I draw inspiration for my space from my mom, who is traditional through and through, and mid-century modern which I gravitate to because of the clean lines and timelessness. One of my favorite things I own is my solid-wood bedroom set my mom bought from a neighbor. I recently had it refinished but it was originally made in the late 1970s!
M: Any DIY's that you're particularly proud of?
V: Last year in the midst of the pandemic I decided, like many others, to start changing and finally making my space what I wanted it to be. I had always lived with someone, whether family or a roommate and I was for the first time able to call all the shots. But one downside to small houses with small kitchen spaces is even less counter and cabinet space! Over the last decade or so, I have collected quite the assortment of mugs, some of which are local ceramics and a lot of which were gifts from friends or a little souvenir from travel. I needed more space for these but also didn’t want to tuck them away in a cabinet. I found some cool brass shelving brackets and under-the-cabinet hooks online then took a “quick” trip to Home Depot. I had someone help cut wood and took it home to sand, stain and mount onto the wall. I frequently change out what’s hanging on the hooks below, its not always mugs but I get the most compliments on it whenever I have company over!
M: What's your favorite source for plants?
V: I would have to say I’ve got two favorites – I love shopping at local plant shops (i.e. Plantacea, Valley View and b Willow) but I also love getting and sharing cuttings with friends. When I am doing plant check-ins, if they are looking a little overgrown or if I just want to grow another, I’ll take a cutting and watch it grow over the next few weeks to months. Once it’s rooted enough to plant, I will make a decision of if I really need another or if it would be better suited at a friend’s collection!
M: Where's your pup's favorite napping location?
V: Parker (my dog) loves to take naps that usually last the entire day. You will typically find him on the couch or my bed, wrapped in a blanket with his head rested on a pillow – he’s basically a human. 😉
Home of: Valentina Massa
Business: Loan Officer at Absolute Home Mortgage