Goodbye, Old Charm


Well, friends, it’s official. This past Friday I signed the papers and sold my house in St. Marys.

If you are new to IBC (or just want a quick refresher), back in 2008, I bought a bed and breakfast called Old Charm. In 2013, I closed the B&B and used the entire house as my home.

Sidenote: For those of you who didn’t know, the name of my blog “Inspired by Charm” (which premiered in 2009) is based on the name of the B&B.

In June of last year, I decided to spread my wings a bit and move to an apartment in Pittsburgh. Although I hadn’t intended to sell my place in St. Marys, an opportunity to do so presented itself recently, and it was just too good to resist.

For the past six months or so, I’ve been hunting for a house here in Pittsburgh, and if you check out my Instagram post today, you can get a sneak peek at how that’s progressing.

As you might guess, selling my home (and previous business) of almost 10 years was bittersweet. However, as I’ve made this transition over the past year, I am confident that everything is working out as it should. And that, my friends, is a great feeling.

With the travel back and forth between homes and the ups and downs of selling and buying, this past year did not go as planned. And although at various points, it made me want to pull my hair out, things could have been so much worse. Most of the rough times were when I let myself get caught up in the downs and drama of life. Now I’m aware there was something bigger at work, and while difficult, this process was essential.

At the end of the day, I’m moving on to the next chapter of my life with joy, excitement, and anticipation. Even though it’s sure to have challenges, I firmly believe this new era will be bright, happy, and beautiful.

So, as I turn the final page of the Old Charm chapter of my life, it seems fitting to take a walk down memory lane. If you don’t mind, I want to share some reflections on my previous home. Obviously, there are dozens and dozens of memories, so I’m going to limit myself as much as possible.

I’d also love for you to join in. If you’ve been following for a while, please leave a comment below with your favorites from my previous home: favorite room, best makeover, coolest craft, tastiest recipe, and so on. It would mean so much to hear from you.

Let’s get to it …. (in no particular order)

The view looking into my dining room.
This was easily my favorite view in my entire house. It was almost magical. Not only does it look pretty, but it was so easy to photograph. The light almost always worked perfectly, and I was able to create many truly magical moments there.

Dining Room - Dior Gray

White Christmas Tree Dining Room Dior Gray

I also have fond memories of this room because at one point I got to chat on the phone with Nate Berkus about it. In fact, he chose that gray paint color. I still love it!

The deck.
This house was located in downtown St. Marys so yard space was lacking. In fact, I didn’t have a yard.

Adding a small deck to a yard.

Adding a small deck to a yard.

Installing this artfully placed deck in the back of the house was one of the best decisions I made. It gave me space to create an outdoor seating area, have a small fireplace, and hang string lights.

100-year-old character.
I unofficially moved out on the 100th birthday of the house. (Not the exact day, but the year.) This old house solidified my love of older homes. I was enamored of the detailed/wide woodwork, all of the built-ins, the pocket doors, and the high ceilings.

Kitchen Woodwork Detailing

My work in this home brought Inspired by Charm to the attention of others. Not only was my St. Marys home featured in several magazines (most notably the cover and a spread in BHG’s Christmas Ideas magazine), but it allowed me to work with many amazing brands and people throughout the years.

Aqua Bedroom Decor

And I’m not telling you this to be braggadocios, but it makes saying goodbye a little easier. I gave this home so much, and it gave so much back to me. I’m especially grateful to have this blog as a journal of my journey

Lots of practice.
As I mentioned last week, I’ve been working on improving the backend of the blog, which means looking through old posts. Blogging was so different back in 2009 in some very good and some very bad ways. When I go back that far, my inclination is to be judgemental of my work. However, I’m forcing myself to take a different approach, and that has helped me realize how much I’ve grown and learned.

Colorful Bedroom Decor

basement stairwell makeover

My photography has improved, my decorating skills have evolved, my writing has changed, and my overall style has shifted into something I’m actually proud of.

On top of that, I’ve learned some handy skills, including how to hang light fixtures, add molding, and even do minor plumbing.

This picture / view of my living room.
To this day, I still get a couple emails a month asking where this rug is from. (It’s from CB2, but they haven’t sold it since 2013.)

Colorful Modern Living Room

Anytime I would share this picture (or a similar shot on Instagram), it would get so many likes and comments. It was a beautiful space.

Okay, I think I’m getting a bit carried away, so I’m going to stop here. However, a few quick honorable mentions.

Honorable Mentions:
My Mom’s 60th Birthday
Rainbow Christmas Tree
My Home Tours
A Small but Mighty Kitchen
Forged Nail Curtain Rod

Thank you all so much for being a part of this journey. Whether you have been following along since 2009 or just joined yesterday, I am thrilled that you are here. I look forward to sharing my next chapter with you!

Disclosure: This blog post may contain affiliate links as part of the Amazon Services LLC Associate Programs and other affiliate services. This means that receives a small commission by linking to and other sites at no cost to the readers.

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  • Reenie at

    Whoever bought your home, surely got a gem. Oh gosh….how can one pick a favorite of your beautiful home? I love the deck so much ~ it’s just so cozy out there. Can’t wait to follow along in your new home.

  • Heather at

    I’ve loved your blog and Instagram feed for years. Your decorating style is spot on. My very favorite thing you’ve created is the rainbow Christmas tree! It’s hard to name a second favorite because I love everything you post especially real life struggles about life not going as planned. It’s so relatable.

  • Pamela Smith at

    Congratulations! I can’t wait to see what’s next for you! I love the Christmas trees you have decorated over the years, but the ombre’ tree was my all time favorite. I loved your outdoor space, seeing your kitties and your moose ( forget his name). Life is always a grand adventure!

  • Charlene Fledderman at

    The best part of Old Charm – was you. You may not remember but I was having a rough day at the Chamber and you brought me over some treats in a Old Charm coffee cup and made my day. You are such a thoughtful person and I will always remember everything you did for our community and at the Chamber. Your friend always. Charlene

  • Heather Jameson at

    I have only been following a year or so, but have loved it all!!! The pumpkin spice cheesecake dip was one of my favorite recipes… But what popped in my mind as my favorite was learning how to put ribbon on a Christmas Tree!!! I’d had ribbon struggle for so long and then poof – one tutorial and I’m an expert! Thanks for everything!

  • Sandra at

    It’s so hard to pick one specific room! But, I guess, I’d have to say the dining room! I always loved your different tablescapes and especially around the Christmas holidays. Now that that time is over, let’s move into our next phase. Praying for nothing but good things for you. I do love your recipes!!

  • Meryl the chaletmomma at

    Michael this is all thrilling!!! I heartily congratulate you! 🎉🥂🎈. Your entire home is FREAKIN’MAZING… but my top 3 in order are: the Livingroom- it’s Gorg, Diningroom is so Inviting & Stylish and lastly the Hall because of the Art!#saynotoemptywalls 😍❤️😍 I’m so excited to follow along as you go on this journey! Can I live vicariously through you ? (I’m being buried in the way back of the chalet 🤣#neverleaving) 💕xx

  • Susan McMenamin at

    Everything you put into your home shows your heart and creative soul. I especially love your holiday decorating and fearless use of color throughout. Somehow I thought that someone else took your photos. They are incredible! Keep on keeping on 😍

  • Melissa Newell at

    Our outdoor space was my favorite! GOod luck on the search!

  • Sue at

    I always felt a coziness through your St. Mary’s house photos, especially your Christmas posts. Favorite recipe, so far, Brown Sugar Pecan cookies.

  • liz n. at

    It’s bittersweet, isn’t it? I remember when the espaliered apple tree produced two whole apples!

    But you’re never one to back down from an adventure, so onward and upward!

  • Pam at

    Best of luck on your new adventures! Like everyone else, I always look forward to what you have up your sleeve for Christmas. But, my hands down favorite thing ever was the Hocus Pocus Broom Co chalkboard wall art you drew. That image just got burned into my brain and showed me once again how incredibly talented you are!

  • Monica at

    Wishing you all the best as you close one chapter and begin at your new home. I love all that you do and I too have evolved in the best way by following wonderful bloggers like you.

  • Pam Clark at

    I found you through your spectacular Christmas trees and other Christmas decor. I can’t wait to see next year’s ideas!

  • Cindy at

    I’ve been following you for awhile and have always loved your style! I can’t really pick a favorite post because I love them all but I think the deck you built would have to be up on the list. I want to hang market lights just like that on my deck! Good luck in your new home!

  • Christy at

    Your Christmas trees had me at hello and I’ve been following you since I stumbled across your blog. Congratulations on the big changes, however bittersweet they may be.

  • Terri at

    Michael… I love your old dining room too! Love the color! I have been following you for long time. Just never really posted much before. I agree with others that the new positive tone in your posts is encouraging. Trying something new and moving to a new place is brave. Can’t wait to see what happens next… Sending you a hug.

  • megan at

    i love your living room! and don’t hate me, but i’m not even crazy about the rug! i’ve always loved your holiday decorating as well. i’m not sure when i started following your blog but based on those dates, i think it might have been from almost the beginning. here’s to a new chapter!

  • Jen at

    I always loved seeing your posts about Christmas decorations, especially the spectacular trees! I look forward to seeing what you do with a new space.

  • JoEllen at

    Congratulations on this new chapter! It is so exciting, and what a fun recap this post has been. I was hoping you would mention the rain bow Christmas tree because it is my favorite!! One of my very favorite recipes has been the buffalo chicken zuchini boats. I share that recipe all the time. It’s delicious. I’m so excited to see your next space!!

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