Meet Batya. Author of the blog Sparrows and Spatulas .
1. What neighborhood do you live in?
We live in the Congress Park neighborhood.
2. Why did you choose that neighborhood?
We chose the neighborhood for myriad reasons but primarily because the public schools are very good, we loved the historic character of the old homes, we love the grit-and-charm of Colfax, the neighborhood is very civic minded and welcoming, and there is a walkability factor in Congress Park that is great. I walk everywhere– to the Botanic Gardens, Congress Park Pool, the shops and independent restaurants on 12th Avenue, Cheesman Park, Sunday night Jazz in City Park, and Cap Hill. I can walk to the supermarket too!
3. What are your favorite local spots?
There are so many great local spots that it’s hard to choose, but for all-things-food I would start with Glaze Baum Cakes (Japanese-European cakes that are excellent; they also have incredible French macaroons), Pinche Taco, the Ethiopian restaurants on Colfax, The Shoppe (cupcake shop which has since closed), Snooze (for brunch- but be prepared to wait) and Dazbog or Hooked on Colfax for coffee. For music, I like all the venues on Colfax. I just caught the Hot8 at the Bluebird (amazing). For plants and making my garden pretty, I go to Wild Flower on Madison and 12th. For books (and these days it’s really all about cookbooks), I go to the Tattered Cover. The Sie Theater is great for independent films and meeting interesting people. And the farmers market near East High School on Sunday is great for small batch goods, home made pies, locally grown produce and grabbing a bite (there’s usually music too).
P.S. We love your vibe! What inspires your style?
My style is inspired by where I come from (NYC) and where I live (Denver). I used to wear all black (pretty much all the time), but now I find myself wearing tons of color. Maybe I’m inspired by the sunsets here, I don’t know! As far as decor, we bought a really old historic home (built in 1895), though my design aesthetic is modern and minimal. I also find myself being inspired by the West, so those accents are everywhere as well. Our living room is the perfect blend of the mix I’m into right now: the fireplace, its tiles, and the mantle are original to the home. There are wood floors, chairs, and couches from Room & Board, thrifted side tables from Sweden, a kilim rug, and framed artwork by Theodore Waddell — his Abstract Angus print– from the Denver Art Museum. On the mantle, we have a row of succulent and cacti from the Denver Botanic Garden sale, creating more of that same American West feel I like. Our dining room is similar in terms of mix-and-match: on the walls we have an old photo (probably early 20th century) from a restaurant in Denver, a watercolor of a stag (because I like the imagery, not the taxidermy), and an old print of the Brooklyn Bridge sketches from the Whitney Downtown in Manhattan. There’s a West Elm Scandinavian-inspired table, a vintage Persian rug, re-upholsted mid-century chairs and and old credenza I picked up while living in New Orleans. I like bits of old and bits of new, and I like to fuse urban with rural. Somehow it all works!
As I’ve gotten older I have discovered my love for interior design! I just recently moved into an older Denver home and have had a blast finding different pieces that fit my style but also stays true to the look and feel of the neighborhood. I found a great chair at http://coloradocasual.com and am excited to check out a couple of the stores mentioned in this interview! Thanks so much!!