Wednesday, 11 March 2015

Our House in Your Home


April's Your Home magazine is out and we're in it! 


It seems almost unbelievable to have our house featured in a best-selling interiors magazine. I'm sure it was only five minutes ago that I was living in the front room of a condemned Victorian terrace, paying £11 a week rent to share a cockroach infested house, accessed by a cobbled back alley frequented by prostitutes and littered with used condoms. Back then I kept my clothes in a council grit bin and covered the damp patches on the walls with nightclub fliers.


In the thirty years since I left my parents' house I've scrimped and made do to be able to afford my own home. I've spent months living on value biscuits & sliced bread and done without a fridge, a TV, central heating or a washing machine. Boarded up windows, leaking roofs, dry rot, mould and rats, I've seen it all but, even as a scatty teenager, I never missed a rent payment or paid a bill late. I've shared houses with an undertaker, a tribal princess from Senegal, a life model and a ukulele playing crusty and even come back from work early to discover one (male) house mate lounging on my bed dressed in my underwear. 


The first property I bought was a compromise, a modern semi in the town's red light district, but it was within my budget and I could afford to travel, have a social life and still keep up the mortgage payments.  I lived alone for years, attracting the attention of the local pimps who, with property and without a man in my life, assumed I was a high-class tart.


In 1992 Jon came along and rescued me from a life of notoriety. After eight years of living in separate homes we rented out my place (as house prices were at an all-time low) and I moved into his Victorian terrace on the other side of town. It was the house I'd always wanted to live in, packed with original features, high ceilings, an attic and a cellar and a long, rambling garden. He was a struggling musician, the house was an ongoing project but, as a high-flying wage earner, I was able to afford to get the work finished. A couple of years down the line property prices picked up and we sold my house, but only after Jon had completely refurbished and redecorated it following a horrendous trashing by the previous tenants.


My Grandma had Alzheimer's and had moved into a nursing home in 2000. As her care costs were cripplingly expensive my Mum suggested Jon & I buy her house to help release some much-needed funds. As both of us loved Stonecroft, her home, we decided to put our place on the market and spend the time gradually doing Grandma's house up as, having stood empty for some years, it was starting to deteriorate. We didn't plan on selling our house to a cash buyer within an hour of it going up for sale. We had a month to pack up and move out and spent the next year living in one room while the house resembled a building site.


Living in a Georgian house means a never-ending list of repairs. The roof needs replacing, the sash windows are rotten, the doors are wonky and the floorboards creak but, when there's money spare, we go to India instead. Stonecroft's stood for 250 years, I'm sure a few more years of neglect won't matter.


So here's the article - a six page spread, no less. It's a shame they cropped Jon out of the photos and moved our house sixty miles south from Walsall to Cheltenham! According to the editorial we've got four bedrooms (as opposed to two) and the house is 60 years younger than it should be. The good ol' British press, eh?


It makes me laugh that the magazine suggests that to get a vintage look like ours readers should shop at Ikea & BHS. That's like me suggesting you shop at H&M and Primark for my style of clothes. Still, I'm still very flattered and excited to be in print and the photos and interview are fab.



Your Home is available at most UK newsagents or you can download this month's copy for £1.45 HERE.

Talking of interviews do check out Van's feature on me & Kinky Melon, HERE.

86 comments:

  1. Ooh! I'm going to buy that at the train station on my way home. Xx

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  2. I cannot wait to go and get a copy! It all looks completely stunning even if they did get your location wrong. All that cleaning paid off. Well done to you both. xxx

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  3. So cool - I wish I could buy a copy - we don't have any good Magazine importers in this town I am afraid. You and your home look great in those pictures!

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  4. Eeeep!! This is so exciting!! I'll be sure to pick up a copy. It looks really fabulous, though Walsall to Cheltenham is quite a mistake?!

    Maybe one day, when we've finished doing up our place we could get a magazine feature. Until then, we've got an avocado toilet suite to enjoy.

    x

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  5. Wow your home is so colorful with so much personality. Congrats on the spread!

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  6. Haha fabulous just like you and Jon. Really glad we've got to know you guys.
    Lynn & Phil's Mum's Coat (chuckle) xxxx

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  7. Your house looks amazing Vix & what a lovely story. I'm off to get the look! ;)

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  8. PS would you like a review copy of my book?

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  9. PS would you like a review copy of my book?

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  10. how exciting!! I'm down loading this right now!

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  11. This is the one home magazine I buy each month- I shall be tracking down this copy :) x

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  12. Looks fantastic , what a cheek , Cheltenham even though you live in one of the best parts of Walsall , Going to get a copy now xxx

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  13. The house looks fantastic, and so do you! Yes, the errors are rather peculiar - why would a journalist change fundamental facts? - and cropping Jon out of shot is an outrage! But hey, you're in print, and Stonecroft is famous, and rightly so!
    I was chuckling as I read your description of some of your previous residences - I lived in some shocking places too, cold and mouldy and damp, but then it was a fairly common experience at the time. I remember being delighted to find that one rented house I moved into had an ancient old twin tub, that seemed like a real luxury!
    Right - I'm off to BHS to copy your style, alright?
    Love you! Xxxxxx

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  14. This is great VIcky! So proud of you. Annoying that they put Cheltenham instead of Walsall though, Walsall could use the good publicity.

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  15. So amazing that your home was featured in a magazing...and if they got the fact wrong (shamr on them and for cutting him out of the pocture)at least the photos don't lie your home is fabulous:-)...anf it eas fun to read about interesting roomates you had.

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    1. Sorry about typos,still learning to use a smart phone

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  16. Right, definitely going to get hold of a copy of this - so I can marvel even more over the beautiful, vibrant, envy-inducing, entirely personalised interior of your and jon's home that can thankfully NEVER be reproduced by shopping at Ikea and BHS! The VERY idea!! I'll also have to harrrumph a little at your having been (accidentally?) relocated from wonderful Walsall to chi chi Cheltenham.
    What I especially love about this post though is that I suspect that we get far more information here about your past homes than is, perhaps, likely to appear in the mag.
    Brilliant however that your truly creative (and created slowly, over time) house can be enjoyed by loads more people and provide imaginative inspiration too (to visit jumble sales and markets, as opposed to retail parks…).

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  17. Brilliant !! Don't know if you remember but Gaz and Cam had their photo in a local paper at a music festival last Summer, I was cropped out, the cheeky gits, but I was necking a pint at the time - classy.
    You do know though don't you, that the thing that gives your house personality and character is the two people living in it and you can't buy that anywhere.
    Twiggy x

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  18. Fabulous! I hope I can find it at the book store, I want to see it in person! congrats! xoxo :)

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  19. Laughing my socks off about the editors moving your home to Cheltenham. Of course if they featured my 4 wheeled home I could actually move there. Be a bit of a pain for the school run though! x

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  20. Laughing my socks off about the editors moving your home to Cheltenham. Of course if they featured my 4 wheeled home I could actually move there. Be a bit of a pain for the school run though! x

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  21. Raaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaah!!!! The place looks amazing!!! Congrats :)

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  22. Trust you to pick those style meccas BHS and IKEA ;-)

    I'm a bit surprised at the changes they made if I'm honest, it's now making me query information in other home type mags I read..... but otherwise yeah it's pretty damn cool to be in print. The only way I would is on the hoarder next door!

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  23. Congratulations - and I like your narrative better :0

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  24. Gorgeous! Congratulations on the feature, and your beautiful, soulful home. BTW, Sandy came into my life in 1992 as well - a good year for attracting the quality man. xox

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  25. Looks amazing, love it and you are so going to be know as Lady Chelters from now on xx

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  26. Hi Vix, I was on the way up to the high school where my kiddies go to school, they have a training hair saloon there and as I was having my highlights done on the way there I decided to get a magazine what a lovely surprise to see your gorgeous home , congratulations to you both on your lovely home x

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  27. I'm rolling my eyes at them changing the facts, especially the bit about moving you to a posher area (the very idea!!), that's one thing I really cannot stand about those aspirational magazines. But it is good that you got six pages to show off your style!

    Your commentary on your older homes made me laugh, too.

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  28. Oooh, I'm going to have to buy it and have a read! Huge congrats on being featured. Your home is beautiful. Em x

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  29. wouuaaa, you're a rock star, dear lady, love your house pics, amazing!!
    It's always interesting to hear about people's stories, and how things happened to take them to the present situation!
    Love how your home express your own personality!, because You Rock, Fabulous Couple!!
    besos

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  30. Bravo!
    It all looks rather splendid, the pix are terrific!

    Love Helga XXX

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  31. Bought my copy at work today and noticed the glaring errors immediately....I was outraged!
    Also wondered why Jon didn't feature in any of the pics, nevertheless it is lovely to have another look around your gaff and so pleased they gave you six pages.
    The description of your previous abode made me smile, I also briefly lived in a cockroach infested place with prozzies next door, except in my case it was in Australia. And I'm dying to know what you said to the male housemate found wearing your knickers? xx

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  32. this is so great! congrats!
    aaaaah ...ikea... yes ... right.

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  33. So cool Vix. Excellent photos. The best part is the story behind how you and Jon arrived here.

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  34. and all these years you've been telling us you live in the Black Country instead of posh land. Broken windows, weird plumbing, hinkie neighbors, yep! Been there, lived there. Your home looks beautiful

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  35. Absolutely fantastic, Vix! And loved hearing more about you, too. xox

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  36. Fame has certainly not gone to your head, that's for sure! How fabulous to get yourself in print shame they chopped Jon off the pics as you both have such style he deserved to be on display too!

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  37. How on earth did they get those details wrong??? Similarly, people ALWAYS 'correct' my name spelling to Ka- when it has been printed/written as Ke- clearly. Even bloomin Crown and Glory have started referring to me as Ka on my packages!!!
    Anyway, iI digress- I LOVE the fact your beautiful home is in print and it looks so clean, tidy and bright! Your house looks so interesting!!!!

    It was great to know the history of you owning it too!!!

    Oh and I did wonder if you'd be a bit miffed by the 70's fad and avoid. I never really look at trends but since it had been doing the rounds of '70's inspired wishlists' I figured I'd jump on the bandwagon with my red dress since I'd spotted it on Sunday mornign!!!x

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  38. What a wonderful feature!!! Even if they did get some details wrong that is one massive feature and it looks positively brilliant!

    Too funny about them suggesting to buy at Ikea though. Sad really.

    bisous
    Suzanne
    PS...you came shopping with me today and whispered in my ear to buy some crushed blue velvet booties. : P

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  39. I've always loved the glimpses of your house. How fun to see it all in print. Now you are a bona fide celebrity. Jon's photo was obscured so that he can protect you from the paparazzi. Congrats, Vix. You deserve it all.

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  40. Looking forward to having a good gander at your Ikea and BHS style house - is that a Billy bookcase I spy?

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  41. That is soooo exciting ... I hope it's sold over here ... I'm going to start stalking my newsagent ASAP :0)
    xx

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  42. That is so cool and at the same time so funny that they managed to cock up some information. I think that is called 'creative license'. I would love to have a copy to have a good look through, wonder how much it would be to buy and get posted to little old NZ?

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  43. This is so exciting! Really, you and Jon's home is just incredible and you have both done a magnificent job. They were some really beautiful pictures and I loved hearing the stories behind all those wonderful and creative touches you have about your home.

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  44. you guys deserve this - the house is very beautiful and "gemütlich"! you put so much work in it. and the professional photos do your wonderful rooms justice.
    in my first years in berlin i moved house 15x in 10 years. from one poorly flat to a rented room to a poorly flat....
    have to steal the idea with the wallpaper on the stairs! xxxxxxx

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  45. Popped out yesterday and picked up my copy. It felt a bit strange seeing your gorgeous home in print having met you a few times and having been to your home it was like Wow :-) Its a lovely article and they captured the warm and cosy essence of your home beautifully. Sad that they cropped Jon out but its great publicity for you both and your business. I have to say your feature was the best item in the magazine the rest was drab and boring. dee xx

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  46. I did wonder when you'd upped sticks and moved to Cheltenham! Rude. I'd rather live in the West Midlands any day... great pics and I always love the story of your house.

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  47. It must be so surreal seeing your home in a magazine!
    It all looks so fabulous darling!
    I liked your interview as well.
    I'm famous! I know someone who was in a magazine.
    Love your individual decorating style. I just want to shout "Hooray!" I hope others get the courage to do their own thing too. xo Jazzy Jack

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  48. how fab! congrats on your magazine spread and its so great to hear about your history of houses! It does kind of suck the random changes to your location and cutting John out! I have to chuckle at the little good idea bubbles and that 299.95 pound cabinet they suggested. How much would you have paid for something of yours similar? I hope either way it drives people to be more adventurous with the things they have and maybe even drive a little bit more business to your stalls! xo

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  49. Hurrah! Even though they moved you out of the fabulous Walsall and cropped Jon out of the shot. I have now ripped you out of the mag for my inspiration book! It does all look fab and I love the story of your home.
    Ah, cockroaches. Don't they make a great noise in the skirting boards? I do look back with some fondness on 10 quid a week bedsits complete with furry mould in the bathrooms, slugs on the kitchen floors and assorted dodgy landlords. I used to live next door to a drug dealing prostitute. Her punters always got the wrong address and would hammer on the door at stupid o'clock for one or other of her services!
    Life's rich tapestry and all that!!
    Loves ya!
    xxxx

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  50. I brought my copy last night and the photos in it are great - you and Jon have the best home in the magazine without a doubt xxx

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  51. Fab! Fab! Fab! Your home and you both are very well captured - well done to the the photographer and very well done indeed you both for having such a beautiful and unique home. I find it very annoying no one bothered to double check the hard facts before going to print.
    xxx

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  52. I don't have access to Ikea or BHS so I guess I cannot copy your look. I can definitely copy the limited funds, second hand finds and family hand me downs look though! I am actually frustrated that due to living in an isolated small town, I sometimes have to buy new things to get what I need.

    You look great, as always, in this spread but it is just unacceptable that they cut out Jon. xoxo

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  53. I'm going to get the magazine! and I might just open the pages (6!!! brilliant and quite right!) at the till and just say 'heeey, look it's Vix' it's so, so cool! the pics are excellent, Why crop Jon out? daft! I'm expecting a 'Vix' section in BHS! gawd, I remember the grotty bedsits (and the creepy Landlord who managed to walk in at inappropriate moments all the time) and the cockroaches, you haven't lived unless you've experienced it hehe!

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  54. Love it. I wonder if they changed your town due to privacy. But it was still kinda weird to change location....

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  55. A 6 page spread, with photos! You and your home are STARS!! That is very annoying about the errors - does that magazine have a fact checker??

    As the article declares, your home is an expression of both of you, and it's been a long, hard road to get there, but the result is just amazing. I just love seeing photos of your home, and all the cool stuff you've collected.

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  56. Congrats! Well deserved, as you (both) and the house are gorgeous! So tickled for you! Famous, again! Can we have your autograph?

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  57. You are a wonderful storyteller, Vix - you made me feel how this magazine feature really means so much to you, giving all your journey with homes. That's brilliant! I am so happy for you - your beautiful, original home looks magical on the photos. I'm glad that it's full 6 pages, and the interview is good, but such a shame for all the errors they made. Congratulations, you guys are awesome, talented and I just adore you! xxx

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  58. You've always been a star to us but now you're bonafide! I love peeks into your home....it is truly inspiring. Xx

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  59. Changing the location and number of the rooms in the house strikes me as very weird. Could it be that they reused an old grid and a previous house in that part of the mag was a four-bedroom one in Cheltenham?

    You have a lovely house, anyway, and it is so very you.

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  60. Yay to them giving you a 6 page spread - fully deserved. But a massive Boo to the glaring errors, still the camera doesn't lie - everyone will be able to see how wonderfully unique your home is. x

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  61. This is so exciting, and the images are all perfect.

    A lovely spread indeed.

    Your home is super gorgeous, Vicky! xx

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  62. I didn't think you lived in Cheltenham, although I did wonder why, whenever I go round the charity shops there, there isn't anything there!

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  63. Awww Vix, this is so cool! I've always admired your home photos and all the little touches and decorations that just let your personality shine through - so nice to see it in a magazine! - Tasha

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  64. Your house is astoundingly beautiful. Looove the brick wall and floors. I don't blame you on vacays over renovations, I'm certain I'd be the same way as a home owner.

    Loved reading your story. I'm cohabitating and establishing myself now and it's hard, so it's nice to read your success story :)

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  65. How wonderful for you and Jon. I am not surprised at all -- you are inspiring and your house is incredibly artful and creative. Well done. x

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  66. Ahh, the scuzzy places we live in when we're young! I remember moving into a bedsit where I could've reached the kitchen sink & cooker from the bed. It came complete with a mouse and a bathroom on the landing where you put 50p in the meter for hot water.
    I do think many people are unrealistic about homes now. Thinking they can 'get on the property ladder' with a nice, neat 2 bed semi while they're in their twenties. A good home takes time to put together, and I think you appreciate it even more if you've gone through the roughing-it stage.

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  67. Great press! Alas, mistakes do happen when the photo-journalist and the copy writer aren't despatched together. At least they got your names properly assigned and hopefully Kinky Melon got a mention.

    Can't read the text on my computer screen, only the cutlines and pull-out's. However, the price of the issue appears in large red type, Vix, reminding your faithful fans you've bought furniture for less! (Ikea, indeed!)

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  68. How exciting to have your beautiful home featured in a magazine. That's so funny that they got your location wrong, I did think when I read the article that it was a bit odd. It's a shame the writer didn't check it for errors before sending it to print! x

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  69. This is a must have for me this month! Looks like a wonderful feature. Love your hair in that pic of you at the table, so glam! It is great that magazinbes now understand that we value original homes and are not interested in all those mass produced 'griege' interiors with no imagination or style. Well done you! x

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  70. Your home looks so wonderful! The pictures are beautiful. So funny, the press always get mixed up about things even (in my experience) when you've written the captions yourself! XXX

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  71. It looks great! I hope the spread attracts more readers to your blow who'll then realize the folly of shopping at Ikea. I've never been happy with a single thing I've bought there and take a pass whenever a field trip is suggested. Keep furthering the cause of originality!

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  72. Wow Vix congratulations. Your home looks amazing, full of color. They would not have picked a better couple to feature. xo

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  73. I love the magazine photographs especially the long shot of you through the doorways,made me think of those Vermeer interiors but in Glorious Technicolour!

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  74. I bought the mag today and yours was the stand out home. It seems odd that this magazine featured your home when you look at the other beige ones!

    I love your house and enjoyed the interview. Luckily we can look at Jon in your blog if not in the mag!!

    Congratulations!!

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  75. Fabulous Vix!
    ...and yes the story has its silly points (Ikea!!! etc) but still, it's wonderful to see you featured.

    You are awesome and what I consider a true role model [eg. instead of bullshit actor celebrities] so the more people who see you and know you the better.

    Next... your own TV show. 'The Madventures of Kinky Melon'!! :) xx

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  76. It's so exciting to see you, Jon and your home featured in "Your Home" magazine. Well deserved and I must track down a copy. I love to see true art and self expression celebrated. Your interesting life story always amazes me and I admire how you live with beauty and integrity. You have been a role model since I first discovered your blog!!

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  77. That is so cool. You guys and your house are totally famous now for sure. When does the book, or, no, the movie come out?! So exciting. And the errors are too crazy. But still, this is great. Kudos to you.

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  78. This is amazing! Thank you for sharing your story and your home is a true reflection of you and Jon XXX

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  79. Congrats on being Published and Sharing your Amazing Journey! To live in a Home as Historic as yours makes my 100 year old Wild, Wild West abode seem like a mere babe... but I suppose 250 years or so ago around here there was only Nomadic Tribal living, which my Dad's Ancestors probably did. *winks* In fact I lived a Nomadic lifestyle until we bought this place 15 years ago so just to put down roots and have a home without wheels was a Big Deal! I so enjoyed seeing the coverage and smiled at the... ahem, Artistic Liberties the Magazine took with modifying the story. *smiles* Happy Spring from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian

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  80. Oh my goodness, I have to get my sorry backside out of this house and go and get a copy. I really hope I haven't missed it, it just looks fab and I want to read all the alternative facts about you. I just love that amazing shot taken in the dining room which manages to get you in the sitting room, the dining room and the stairs in it. Genius. Stoneycroft is gorgeous and I just love to hear the tale of how you got there. Have you got any photos of your other houses? They would make some great blog posts. Xxxxx

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  81. Congrats Vix and Jon... although a shame they cropped Jon out! You have such a fabulous, unique and ever so chic home :-)

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  82. How wonderful for you both!
    xxx

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Love from Vix
xxx