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Interiorssneak peeks

A Vintage Dealer’s Kansas Home Filled with Curiosities

by Sofia Tuovinen

A Vintage Dealer’s Kansas Home Filled with Curiosities | Design*Droits-Humains
spent the first part of her life on a three-generation farm, where the house was filled with heirlooms and antiques and the attics served as treasure-hunting grounds for the curious. When Nicole and her family moved from the farm to a bustling district in Manhattan, KS, also known as The Little Apple, it felt like going from one extreme to the other. “Living in these two completely different environments really molded me,” Nicole explains. These experiences, along with her mother’s and grandmother’s love for antique malls and estate sales, all had their share in inspiring Nicole to pursue a self-taught career as a vintage dealer and furniture artist in her 30s. Today, Nicole lives with her husband Josh Wright in Overland Park, KS, and sources and sells vintage items through her company .

Nicole and Josh met during a difficult period in Nicole’s life when her mother was battling cancer. “I feel like he was brought into my life to help me heal,” Nicole shares. After starting their journey together in Arizona, the couple eventually moved back to Kansas, where Josh runs his own . Nicole and Josh have lived in their current home, a 1959 split-level, for eight years. They wanted something in an older neighborhood close to the city, surrounded by mature trees and oozing with character — this home checked all of those boxes.

When Nicole and Josh first bought the house, they tackled bigger renovations — they remodeled the kitchen, redid the hardwood floors, converted the attic into a master suite, widened doorways and painted the house inside and out. Creating a home with all the color and personal flair we see today has been a steady process, developing along with the couple’s taste. “I always enjoyed decorating in general, but it wasn’t until I immersed myself in my vintage business that my style began to evolve,” Nicole shares. “The pivotal moment for me was a couple of years ago when I asked myself, ‘why am I selling all of this great vintage I’m finding and why am I not keeping any of my uniquely painted furniture pieces?’ This opened the floodgates and I began to curate the house into my current eclectic style.” As Nicole and Josh share a love for colorful decor and vintage pieces, adding personality to the home has felt natural. The main goal for both Nicole and Josh is to only add items to their home that they love to look at. With this in mind, the couple has created a sanctuary for themselves and visiting friends, a home that feels comfortable, cool, and relaxed. “I want a space where I can have a cup of coffee, a pup on my lap, and feel inspired,” Nicole adds. Needless to say, I think Nicole and Josh can check that box, too! —

Photography by

Image above: Nicole and Josh’s living room features mid-century inspired pieces mixed with bold textiles that brighten up the space. “My design style is definitely equal parts nature and nurture. Growing up, I always enjoyed creativity and color,” Nicole says. The charcoal accent wall adds drama and depth and highlights the lucite dining chairs and sputnik-style chandelier.

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Nicole and Josh’s entry is a celebration of layered design, complete with various colors and textures. The entry buffet is one of Nicole’s hand-painted pieces. The lead glass windows resting on top of the buffet were purchased at a local thrift store.

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The living room is filled with memories, from the first pieces of furniture that Nicole bought with her waitressing tips, to family pictures in the vintage hutch. “I love this room because it’s super comfortable — it’s where I drink my coffee and snuggle with the dogs, and I get amazing light through the 1950s wavy glass windows,” Nicole says. The bright front door color was inspired by one of Nicole’s purses!

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Nicole and Josh remodeled the kitchen eight years ago. Although they love the amount of storage space that the kitchen offers, the couple has plans to do some cosmetic updates. “This space is a great example of how your tastes can change over time,” Nicole explains. “I hope to redo the cabinets and backsplash at some point soon, adding more color.”

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Nicole loves to display some of her favorite vintage items in the kitchen, like the Pyrex Cinderella nesting bowls that belonged to her mother.

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The eat-in area contrasts the kitchen with its bright pops of color. The farmhouse cabinet houses Nicole’s collection of vintage pottery.

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Nicole shares, “we […] wanted extra space for our future family, but life took us on a different journey and the extra rooms have morphed into perfect work spaces for us.” Josh, who often works from home, wanted a darker, moodier vibe for his office space, complete with a comfortable and worn leather chair.

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A pallet wall adds a rustic touch to Josh’s office. His collection of books, vintage items and memorabilia fills the shelves. “The cassette player works and we’ve jammed some classic 80s tunes on it already,” Nicole adds.

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Nicole’s office, also referred to as the craft room, is where she paints vintage pieces of furniture and operates her business, . It’s a space that inspires her creativity and stores some of her most cherished items.

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Nicole hand-painted the craft room walls for an Indian batik look. The couple’s dogs, Georgia, Bailey, and Stella can often be found snoozing on the antique sofa.

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Nicole’s desk was found on the side of the road. Various baskets store items and tools when they’re not in use. The fish painting on top of the shelf was painted by Nicole’s late mother, and is the most loved piece in this space.

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The wardrobe in the craft room is another piece hand-painted by Nicole. “It’s one of the biggest pieces I’ve ever painted. I like to name my unique pieces and this one was named ‘Grateful Dead is Not In Here.’”

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The giant pocket doors in the guest room, hauled out of a turn-of-the-century home in Kansas City, make a true statement. “I used these as a display at one of my vintage shows. While tearing down after the show, one of them fell on my husband’s head…at which point I decided to make them a permanent fixture in the house. No more shows for these babies!” Nicole notes.

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The guest bathroom used to be the main bathroom of the house. When remodeling four years ago, Nicole wanted to create a usable space for guests. “Our handyman extraordinaire turned a utility cart into the perfect vanity for this small space.” The sink was placed on one side to provide more usable counter space.

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Nicole shares, “my favorite part of our master bedroom is that it feels like our own little sanctuary. From the back of the house, we’re three stories up and I enjoy feeling like I’m in the treetops.”

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The master bedroom decor reflects Nicole’s love for mi various styles, from mid-century modern to rustic farmhouse. Nicole also loves to repurpose old pieces, like the ladder that she turned into a necklace display.

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A piece of driftwood collected on a road trip hangs above a P. Buckley Moss print from Nicole’s mother’s and grandmother’s collection.

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The attic master bathroom was created by raising the roofline and adding square footage to the house. The space now contains a walk-in shower, free-standing tub, two sinks and a separate water closet. “Being able to create this bathroom was top on our list and one of the reasons we bought this house,” Nicole and Josh explain.

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The walkout basement serves as a family room, perfect for rela and watching TV. “I specifically chose furniture for comfort […] and intentionally used a softer palette with little pops of color.”

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After playing around with furniture layouts, Nicole and Josh found a solution that allowed them to add a game area at one end of the long and narrow family room.

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To turn the blank basement into an inviting space, Nicole and Josh added IKEA cabinets and custom shelving for a built-in look. With soft furniture and a soothing color palette, the family room has become the main spot to watch TV, play games and unwind.

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Josh and Nicole with their two breeder puppy mill rescue Boston Terriers, Bailey and Georgia, and Stella the Pug.

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Plan of Nicole and Josh’s split-level home. “What we love most about our home is the comfort we feel the minute we step through the door!” — Nicole and Josh

SOURCE LIST

Entry
Paint –
Door color – custom color match
Hanging lights – IKEA
Bill Murray print – street fair in New Orleans (maker unknown)
Sky photo art – Nicole Mertz

Living Room
Paint –
Accent wall paint –
Sofa –
Dining chairs – Urban Outfitters
Chandelier – Homegoods
Fringed throw – Anthropologie
Large throw pillows – IKEA

Kitchen
Paint – Fun Days by Clark and Kensington
“Gather” picture –
Bar stools – Target
Tulip table – unknown
Dining chairs – Wayfair
Pendant light – similar at IKEA
Peacock feather print –
Tea towel – Marshalls
Candle – Graydog Candles
Mixer – KitchenAid

Office
Paint –
Metal shelves – IKEA
File holders – IKEA
Dog picture – Homegoods
“Everyday I’m Hustling” plaque – Homegoods

Craft Room
Paint – , bright pink unknown
Llama picture – Homegoods
Floor cushions – Homegoods
Purple vase – Homegoods
Throw blanket – Homegoods
Paisley pillow – Homegoods
Bird & tree prints –
Felt garland – Homegoods
Lamp – vintage from

Guest Room
Paint –
Blue paint – Fun Days by Clark and Kensington
Bedding – Homegoods
Teal rug – World Market
Bed frame – IKEA
Curtains – World Market
Chair pillow – Homegoods

Guest Bathroom
Paint – Suede Gray by Behr
Light fixture – Home Depot

Master bedroom
Paint –
Comforter – Urban Outfitters
Large blue pillows – IKEA
Accent pillows – Homegoods
Pouf – Homegoods
Hanging lamps – Pier One
Curtains – World Market
Bed and side tables – Copeland

Master Bathroom
Paint – Seaside Manor by Clark and Kensington
White walls –

Family Room
Paint –
Green chairs – World Market
Art frames – IKEA
Couch and matching chair – Nebraska Furniture Mart
Lamp – Homegoods
Curtains – IKEA
Rug – Rugs USA
TV stand – Wayfair
Goonies picture –

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Comments



  • Nicole and Josh your home is treasure trove. Thanks for inviting us in.

    I am inspired by the beauty and layering of textures in your home.

    I wander through other people’s home during my morning coffee and get ideas for what to look for shop and home. I love that your home does not look designed its filled with items you selected over time and it does not look staged.

    AWEsome tour AT! Keep em coming!

    • Oh wow! Your compliments mean the world to me. Thank you so much for taking the time to check out the article and our home. I very much appreciate it.

  • Really lovely and inspiring, especially the craft room. Congratulations for creating such a beautiful home!

    • Thank you so very much Octavia! The craft room is very special to me. Thank you for taking the time to read the article and leave a comment.

  • nicole is one of the absolute gems i follow on instagraam- i love her bold, moody, unique style, her flair for vintage, and her wonderful self! she’s so kind as well! and look at those puppies!!!!

    • Hi Cassie!! You are the sweetest! Thank you so much for your kind words. I very much appreciate you and all your support.

    • Hi!!! Thank you so much! 💜 We bought it years ago and unfortunately I can’t remember what website I bought it from. I’m so sorry.

    • Thank you so much Julie! I appreciate you taking the time to read the article and leave such a sweet comment.

    • Thank you Kim! They definitely are my babies. They get a lot of love and attention in this household.

  • What a beautiful, warm home with gorgeous color. I lived in Manhattan, KS for a little while, and it brought a smile to my face to see it mentioned in this tour. It’s one of my great home-decor regrets that I never made it to any of the antique stores around Kansas!

    • Hi Jen!!! It’s so nice to know someone has heard of my hometown and lived there too! Such a cute place with lots to offer. Thank you for taking the time to checkout the article.

    • Thank you so much Leesi! I truly appreciate that! I put a lot of heart and soul into those pieces. ☺️

    • Hi! Thank you so much!…and yes I can definitely relate to getting overwhelmed. It sometimes takes over every space. 😱

    • Hi! Unfortunately we bought the tub online years ago and I can’t remember what website I got it from. I’m so sorry.

  • Absolutely gushing over this article! I had the privilege of working with Nicole while taking these photos and let me just say, they still don’t do her home justice. It’s incredible! She makes things work that I’d never think of and her furniture pieces are stunning. Give her a follow on Instagram (kansasgirlvintage), believe me you’ll love everything she shares and her humerous stories!

    • Torri you truly are the BEST!!! Thank you for everything you did to make our house come to life through a picture. That is a talent and I’m so happy that you were the one to do it!

  • Awesome house! I love the layers of color. Bring from Kansas, it is so refreshing to see a house in the Midwest featured. Thanks!

    • Hi Michelle and fellow Kansan! Thank you so much for taking the time to check out the article and for leaving super sweet comments!

  • Gorgeous! I love all of the creativity and warmth in this home. It makes you feel like you’ve been wrapped in a warm blanket upon entering. Great eye for color and texture. The ability to layer as much as you do and still have it looking youthful and bright and fun, is really outstanding!

    • Wow! Completely blushing over your comments! That really does mean the world to me for you to say such nice things. I love our home and to have you see such things in it makes me so happy!

  • This might be one of the most welcoming looking houses I’ve seen. One could relax here without being remotely bored or unstimulated visually.

    • Thank you so much Natasha! I truly appreciate your very nice comments. My hope is that people feel at home here, so for you to say that means so much to me!

      • What does you and your husband do? Love your house so much, it’s a dream for me to have such a beautifucl well designed big house , as i’m living in a city. My boston terrier is old and she can hardly see…she has catarat in both eyes :(
        she has 15 year old.

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