Monday, March 21, 2011


On this first full day of spring, it is 31º F. And it is windy. And we are supposed to get 3-5 inches of snow. So, I'm going to focus on the indoors instead of the outdoors and direct you to one of my favorite, favorite places on the internet. It is a site which shows photos and information about movie and television houses, and you may find it here. The entire Hooked on Houses site is great fun.

When I watch a movie or a television show, I quite often push the pause button so I can look more carefully at a room, a shelf of books, a paint color, or the dishes in a kitchen. I've already written about Kate Winslet's cottage in The Holiday, and in fact, modeled my own study on the one in the movie. I think often of places that I love - like the kitchen in When A Man Loves A Woman. Or Meg Ryan's desk in You've Got Mail. Or Jessica Lange's childhood bedroom in Tootsie.

And I'm not the only one! Pamela at The House of Edward did a fantastic piece a couple years ago on her favorite movie houses. There are 51 comments, illustrating that there are a whole bunch of us out there really paying attention to the details of a movie or tv set. It was one of those comments which first led me to Hooked on Houses.

Here are some pictures to whet your appetite.

The kitchen in Practical Magic

The screened porch in Hope Floats

The living room in Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House


  1. I love any room--and the colors!--in Amelie. My sister and I pause that movie a lot.

  2. I haven't seen Amelie in far too long, and I love it so much. I think I'll buy the dvd. Thanks for the reminder, Clair!

  3. Thanks for the mention, Nan! And how I love that living room in Mr. Blandings. I still remember that rainy night in the movie... when the bridge was washed out and poor Cary Grant had to spend the night in the city! Lovely movie house!

    I was recently besotted with the speech therapist's office in THe King's Speech. Those peeling green walls and high, high ceilings! Oh, I'd love to get my hands on those rooms!

  4. I'm not sure I've really thought all that much about the houses or rooms in the movies or TV shows I'm watching. That being said, I love Practical Magic and realize that I have loved that kitchen too.

    I'll have to take a look at the website you noted and see if I am a "closet" house lover. LOL

  5. Ooh, never mind the kitchen in Practical Magic, Nan - I'd love to have the whole house, island and all! Love the film.

    Downton Abbey is filmed not far from us, at Highclere Castle, so we're going to squeeze in a trip there this summer. One of those places we drive past and say (every time) 'must go there someday'. This spring or summer is going to be the 'day' we do!

  6. Wonderful site! Thanks for sharing Nan! I love that desk in You've Got Mail too. I love her whole flat in fact and want to peer round corners and into her cupboards :)

  7. You're so right! When watching movies, I always check the houses too, and wait through the credits at the end to see where the scenes were filmed. But they don't always tell us, which is a shame.

    BTW, in Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House, don't you love the scene where Myrna Loy is telling the painters what colors she wants: "The blue in the dot in the wallpaper, not the big dot, but the smaller lighter one," and the painter writes down "Blue," and you just know the end result isn't going to look anything like what she's hoping for.

    Anyway, I must check out the site you mentioned. Thanks for including it.

    Canadian Chickadee

  8. Pamela, that was just the best post you did! I DVRed Mr. Blandings from TCM, and ''protected" it so now i own it and can watch it anytime. How I love it. Haven't seen The King's Speech yet.

    Kay, I love that 'closet house lover' - I drive Tom crazy because I'm always stopping a show and saying look at that, and what brilliant design work.

    Nicole, lucky, lucky you!! I LOVE that show and am so glad there will be more episodes.

    Rambling Fancy, I love the big 'BREAD' tin on the kitchen floor. I want one.

    Canadian Chickadee, Yes! I do love that scene. It is just like I am. :<)

  9. What a great topic.
    I do the same thing, but can't come up with titles at the moment.
    Will check out your links....

  10. Very interesting - I must admit I wouldn't be able to name a favourite room or house from a movie or TV series. But you have made me want to take a closer look next time I watch anything, and check out my favourite films for their interiors!
    Thank you for giving me that inspiration :-)

  11. That was fun (more fun than negotiating the 4" on top of the 2' ruts of mud on our road). Is it as bad yet by you?

  12. I would love to have that screened porch.

  13. I don't do that, i.e. hit the pause button to look at rooms, but I do use a magnifying glass when looking at house and style mags, so I can read the spines of the books on the shelves (if I don't already recognise them!) One of my favourite movie 'rooms' was in 84 Charing Cross Road when Helene Hanff babysat for her friends and she sat in a lovely room with bookshelves beween the windows.
    Margaret P

  14. I like Meryl Streep's apartment in The Hours. There is a rather somber Woody Allen film (with Colleen Dewhurst I think) called Interiors that has some really beautiful interiors in it.

  15. Joanne, there are so many movie and tv rooms and whole houses I love.

    Librarian, sometimes the setting is so strong for me that the plot becomes almost secondary. Let me know what you like when you take a second look at some favorite films.

    Sarah, is it ever! But the worst is our daughter and her boyfriend's driveway which the builders didn't have time to make before winter. They have taken to parking on the dirt road that goes up to our house because they just can't drive into their house.And now snow on top of it, just as you noted. Ah, spring! Made sugar on snow yet? That's the one advantage of more snow. We hadn't made any yet this season and now we can.

    Lisa, isn't it just great? And right off the kitchen like that. Oh, I love it. Have you seen Hope Floats? The whole house is great.

    Margaret, I do the same thing! I liked the desk where HH wrote in that movie.

    Thomas, haven't seen The Hours, but I do remember Interiors as quite depressing.

  16. Thanks for a lovely post! I wonder when your snow will stop coming!

  17. Nan, one of my favorites blogs is Hooked on Houses. When I first discovered it I spent hours going through other houses, then, so no one felt left out, I sent the site to my friends. Wonderful place to visit. Then, there is the House of Edward, always such well done posts. I'll have to go back and see her piece of movie houses.

    There are movies I will actually watch just to see the houses. Sad, but true.

    Hope the snow isn't so much. I'm complaining about mud season and you have a bit further to go until then, don't you?

  18. Sherri, we can count on snow through April off and on. Just when we think it's gone, we'll get a little.

    Penny, not a bit sad! I do, as well. We are having mud season along with a bit of snow. So lovely.

  19. This was such a fun post. I loved seeing those movie sets. I'll scoot on over to see your link.

  20. What a lovely post. I love rooms in films. I try to work out the layout in Kathleen's flat in 'You've Got Mail", but get confused. Was the bed moved? Obviously this is a reply for people as pedantic as I must be!!

  21. That detour was fun, Nan! I love house design anyway but a look at some favourite movie sets was a treat. I loved the kitchen in "It's Complicated" - it's a favourite - but then I forgot I liked "Something's Gotta Give" too . . . oooh, the house at the beach. Thanks for sharing the link.

  22. Kay, it is a pure delight!

    Carole, oh my gosh! If you go to the site, she actually talks about the bed placement changing! You are not alone!!

    Deirdre, I saw a magazine article once where a woman designed her kitchen after Something's Gotta Give!

  23. I'd go for the screened-in porch anytime. Being from the South, you gotta love it!

  24. My two cents worth, a lot of people up here have them to keep out mosquitoes, especially around lakes. Sadly, screens don't keep out the noseeums which to my mind are the worst bugs of all!

  25. How fun. Thanks for the link; more fun to look forward to as soon as I get caught up on my favorite blogs-- we've been away a week.

  26. I'm having fun poking around your blog entries, Nan.(you'll always be Nancy to me:) It's like visiting my old friend - and I LOVE your study and all that you wrote about it .
    The scene in Tootsie where she is looking at the little pink flowers on her wallpaper always gets to me - remembering when life was simpler.

  27. Sallie, I just love the site!

    Hey, Marty old pal! I can't tell you how tickled I am that you visit AND comment. I really need to see Tootsie again. It's been a long time. I do love that farmhouse, inside and out.

  28. Oh how I love this, Nan. Thanks for the link to Hooked On Houses. One of my very favorite kitchens has always been Steve Martin's kitchen in ROXANNE.

    I love the kitchen you show with the Aga stove. :)

  29. Yvette, I haven't seen Roxanne in ages and ages. Maybe the Hooked on Houses site will offer that kitchen sometime. I sure wouldn't mind having an AGA. :<)

  30. I love "Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House." Give a copy to everyone you know who is going to build a house or "just do a little work" on the one they own. LOL

    The older I have gotten, the more I find myself looking at the room props in movies..."oh, I remember that! We had one in our kitchen!"

  31. Hughes ap Williams, I enjoy pressing the pause button on movies and tv shows just to take a better look at shelves and counters. The design people put so much work into their 'interiors' and sometimes they go by so quickly the viewer doesn't see the details.

  32. My favorite house is Karen Blixen's home in "Out of Africa." A great porch and some fabulous bookshelves, to start! Highly recommended!

    Some other good ones are the house in The Big Chill and Annie's house in Bull Durham (more great porches).

  33. I love this post, Nan!! And I know I'm going to spend hours perusing that website. Thank you, thank you!! :)

    I know I've fallen in love with lots of movie set interiors, but can't name any right off the top of my head. I did love Meg Ryan's apt in You've Got Mail. And Tom Hank's "houseboat" in Sleepless in Seattle. I agree with Thomas--the apartment in The Hours is wonderful. Did you ever see The Story of Us with Bruce Willis and Michelle Pfifer (sp?)? I loved their little Craftsman bungalow.

    Fun post!!

    And I love your new header. :)

  34. J.G., I remember that house! I need to see the movie again, and read the book. I remember the kitchen in The Big Chill, but it has been ages since I saw this film.

    Les, we would have such fun watching movies together. I did see that movie but it has been such a long time that I don't remember the house.


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