unexpected guests: matt pierce.
by victoria comment


brace yourselves, dear readers, we’ve got a man in the house! i’m always itching to share some guy style around here, and today on unexpected guests we’re popping up to portland to visit with matt pierce, handy-man extraordinaire! i’ve shared matt’s new blog and shop recently, wood & faulk, but ever since befriending and following him on on flickr a while back i’ve been pestering him to be a guest here. i want you to keep in mind, that many of the home furnishings here, as well as the restoration on his house, have all been done by the hands of matt. inspiring, no? yes! so here we go, off to matt’s world of wood working and restoration wonderment.

Where do you live, and what are a few of your favorite things to do in your neighborhood?
I live in the Concordia neighborhood of NE Portland, Oregon, in the Alberta Arts district. There’s lots of great restaurants, good coffee, dingy bars, bookstores and hangouts nearby so it’s hard not to frequent them often. My favorites have to be Pine State Biscuits for brunch, Monograph Bookwerks for finding interesting books & artifacts, the Bye and Bye for some Pabst and a Brussels Bowl, Together Gallery for a showing.

How did you learn to be so handy – classes, or self-taught?
I think it’s in my character… my dad was a carpenter in his youth, his dad (my Poppa Vic) was a carpenter all his life. My Mom’s dad, Poppa George, was always building with wood too. He would give me screwdrivers and shielded wire as a kid, which I used to remove cabinet doors and short-circuit wall outlets, respectively. Later in life, most of my handy-ness was mostly self-taught, due to an intense curiosity to take things apart. I read a lot of manuals, internet articles, old handyman journals too. If I get interested in something, I tend to dive really deep into it with lots of research. Though, sometimes it helps to have an expert mentor… in my 20s, my uncle taught me how to build engines and lots of auto mechanics, which has been invaluable.

What’s your favorite vintage possession?
Probably my Herman Miller 670 lounge. Charles Eames is a personal hero, and to find an early production lounge is a real treasure. Especially when I had a little bit of restoration to do on it myself. The attachment is so much stronger when you’re helping preserve something.

What five things can’t you live without?
My family foremost… then everything else is a distant 2nd. I enjoy ‘stuff’ so much, but I’m ok without it too. All of my stuff can be replaced… even that lounge.

If you could go shopping with anyone in the world, who would it be?
I’d  wanna drop into Alameda Flea Market with you, of course! Then maybe vintage film camera shopping in Tokyo with John from toyko camera style?

What music do you like to listen to while you’re working on a project around the house?
Oh, I love music so much… but I don’t have a go-to for projects… usually just whatever I’m listening to lately. Recently it’s been Andrew Bird, First Aid Kit, Real Estate, SeaBear, Horse Feathers. The other day, A.A. Bondy came on and I wanted to stop my project and make pancakes. I don’t quite know what that means, though.

What bores you to death?
Bores me to death? I’ll say this… I welcome boredom! Those moments – I just sit in my chair, relax and let my mind wander about projects and ideas. If that leads to a nap, so be it.

• photos by matt pierce.

47 responses to “unexpected guests: matt pierce.”

  1. Why are the pendant lamps over the dining table different in 2 of the photos – plain bulb in one and then lamp in another? And, the TV is white with a wooden table under it and then black with a red table under it in another shot? I love it, but I’m just wondering, did Matt do a quick costume change?

  2. Victoria, thanks so much for posting! I’m very happy to see it up here. Finally!

    @selena, yeah, I change things out very frequently! I’ve put up the bare bulbs, painted the tv casing and changed out the credenza pretty recently.

  3. even tho I’ve witnessed many of the changes as they evolved, it’s exciting to see this posting…I’m always surprised when you want to change something that is already amazing, and even more surprised that it always turns out even better than before…

  4. what a beautiful interview!!! glad that you catch a man…Love his style and his brand i already knew!!!! Great share Victoria as usual!!!! xo

  5. I love Matt’s thoughts on “boredom.” I think boredom is really underrated – we need time to just let the thoughts wander (and sometimes great ideas grow out of naps, too!).

    Thanks for a beautiful look at Matt’s home, Victoria. I love this feature of yours.

  6. Damn. The cool factor just doesn’t quit here, does it?!

    After reading through this and perusing your own site, Matt, I think I’ll hire a life coach, take this post, your blog, and a giant coffee… I’ll sit down with my thoughtful presentation, lean back quietly, and then say in a very matter-of-fact way… “Make it happen. Please.”

  7. It’s so rare to get an interview with a male shelter blogger. For the longest time I thought I was the only one. But we are out there, just hard to find.

  8. i’m so glad you all liked matt’s home as much as i do!

    uncle beefy – you do have a way with words!

    eric – so nice to have you here…yay for male shelter bloggers!

  9. Oh, thank you, thank you, thank you for this portrait! It is so inspiring, and it might be just what I needed to push me to actually act on all the dreams i have for my little place… Thank you!

  10. Love the space! Love the simplicity.
    Tell me though, who is the artist that did the blue fawn/snake/stars painting in the first photo? I must know!

  11. Thanks for sharing your home. I absolutely love you dinner table and chairs. Where did you find the salt chairs and Marais Armchair in those finishes?

  12. Carlos, the wooden Norwegian chairs were found at a local shop and the Marais chairs were found from a seller on ebay… and when I got them, they weren’t actually real Marais’… which could account for the variant color. Luckily they were a steal or I would have been shipping them back.

  13. I link hoped over here from Apartment Therapy. Great home and style, but I’m dying to know who the artist is of the piece in the first photograph?

  14. I’m new here on the blog.. but I’m so glad I discovered it when I did! We’re about to move into a new house and I’ve had the hardest time trying to figure out how I was going to combine my favorite styles.. Matt completely took care of that for me! I love the blend of Mid-Century and Industrial decor in this space.. can’t wait to go furniture hunting!

  15. I popped over here from AT as well, because I was very intrigued by the bed … I’ve been studying the pictures, trying to figure out – is the headboard “part” of the bed frame, or are they separate items? Are those drawers, or are they planks? I think it must be solid. I just love the way it looks, perfectly sized to your space like a ship bunk :)

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