Let’s Talk Home Show Houses!

Last week was the St. George Area Parade of Homes.  It is a HUGE deal down here, like 35,000 people in attendance huge and its the most attended home show in Utah. This year the houses ranged in price from $315,000-$3.5 million with most being in the $800k-$1.5m family. Holy money!!

There is so much excitement around this event that you cant help but get caught up in it.  I walked into each home with so much anticipation for inspiration. There were a few houses this year that were out of the box, which I loved, and even though some weren’t my style, I could totally appreciate every single one of them. I just want to feel inspired and not like I have to drop a ton of money on furniture from Restoration Hardware or have 5 different matchy fabrics for pillows on my bed, ya know?

Each house had something really great about it but I had a few favorites. Lets chat about the highlights. I feel like there were a few that were right on the money. 

Wallpaper was everywhere. Some great (like the picture below) and some not so much.  How about that built in entertainment center?! So good!

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Marble:  The house in the next couple of pictures was my favorite.



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The tile in that house was fantastic.  Like this one, can you believe that you can get that on!

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Stand alone tubs were in almost every home.


As were hidden pantries.

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I loved this interior window wall

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Loved this buffalo head.

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These built in bunks were killer. 



This ultra-modern house was Court’s favorite, and how gorgeous is the wood on the island?


I did love this macramé chair, it’s the stuff of dreams.

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Overall, there is still loads of beige, granite, and over stuffed couches. Its baffling to me that no one rocked cool vintage furniture, its like it’s not even an option. I know that my style is surely not everyone’s but man oh man, I love walking out of a place totally blown away, and I wish that it happened more.

So now its time for the whole point of this post, I want to hear your thoughts!  Please chime in, how do you guys feel about home show houses?

Why do you go? Is it to see how people that can afford a $3.5 million dollar house live?

Is it to see houses that are in your price range?

Is it to get decorating ideas? 

Did you check out any of the houses this year, if so which ones were your fave?

I have loads of respect for the hard work that it takes to pull this thing off, I cant even imagine.  This post is in no way bashing what anyone is doing. Tastes and styles vary, thank goodness for that! I am just really genuinely curious and dying to hear your perspective!!

You can check out all of the houses from the St. George Parade here! 



  • Amy Hilyard 23.02.2016 at 11:11

    My husband and I love Parade of Home events. In fact it is a super big deal for us. Each spring we make a weekend of it..Stay in a hotel, eat at nice restaurants and literally go through as many houses as we can before we drop from exhaustion. Kansas City has theirs set up by area and price. We seem to always look at the trendy area and definitely stay on the higher end homes…Not because we have the money…no, we are only looking for design and decorating purposes. And the fact that we just love and appreciate homes.
    I have to admit that the past few years we have been disappointed. It seems that the homes are stuck in a rut and the builders might be using the same decorators, because nothing seems to be evolving…..There is only so many dark kitchen, fake stone, and out of the box decorations that you can look at. We will continue to go just in case a builder has something new.
    My one tip I would share with you is this is the absolute best place to get wall color ideas. …once you find a color you like..just trudge on down to the basement and look under the stairs or in the garage…painters store their paint cans…Just find the can/color (painters are messy), whip out the smartphone and take pictures of the recipe/color name..

  • Gretchen 23.02.2016 at 13:12

    That marble house…omggggggg amazing.

  • Pam Groom 23.02.2016 at 14:54

    I really liked those bathrooms Mandi. Are you in the midst of doing yours? Mine needs some TLC, and those gray wood cabinet bases inspire me. Do you suppose one could strip the paint off old cabinets and do a grey weathered wood look?
    I always have mixed feelings about seeing mega-buck homes. I get jealous and start to covet, but at the same time there is inspiration there for the DIY gal. I’m torn between the love of the beautiful and the practical constraints of time and money.

  • Pam Groom 23.02.2016 at 14:58

    Hey Mandi. Thinking of magnificent homes….if God is preparing a place for us, his saints, isn’t it exciting to think that He knows us so well, that the place he creates for us in heaven will be totally awesome (like those million dollar houses) even if we can’t make our current earthly home look like a million bucks?

  • Katy 23.02.2016 at 16:10

    I think part of issue with the whole beige/overstuffed/overdone style is location. When we moved to Utah, I was SHOCKED at how many homes had this terrible, outdated decor. Now that we’ve moved back to Austin (and traveled around quite a bit) I think that it’s probably because Utah can generally be behind on a lot of trends. Thank heavens your blog is so awesome and popular and fresh! Maybe you’ll be the inspiration people need to step out of the heavy style and find something more fun!

  • AnnaLynne 23.02.2016 at 16:26

    When I saw the title of this post I was immediately hooked. I had to know what your feelings were! I too usually leave the Parade of Homes underwhelmed. I see things that are done really well, but I’ve never thought, “THIS! This is MY HOUSE! It’s PERFECT!!!!” I’ve also found the same with house hunting in Utah. I don’t expect to ever find a home that I wouldn’t want to change in some way or another, but it’s just like what Katy said above. In so many Utah real estate listings I see, “newly repainted” and “brand new kitchen remodel”, but it’s always tons of beige or pastel yellow (??) paint, and dark, oatmeal and black granite counters. You know, the kind where you could spill a ton of peanut butter, bird seed, and honey on the counter and no one would ever see it? Why?? Sigh. I must say though, I now feel tons better knowing that I’m not the only person who doesn’t leave every Home Show in complete and utter awe, haha. :)

  • Suzanne 23.02.2016 at 16:46

    Love the parade of homes! I’ve always wanted to go to the st. George one too, so I’m so so happy about this post. Mostly I go because I love design and for inspiration, but also because it’s a fun date for me and my husband and then also for my mom and I. Unfortunately I’ve lived out of state for almost 7 years and they just don’t do the same thing here, so I really really miss it.

  • Dani @ Danielle and Co. 23.02.2016 at 16:50

    Home Depot’s tile has been so crazy good lately! That black and white patterned tile is something I’ve been trying to figure out how to work into our bathroom or kitchen!

  • Kim 23.02.2016 at 17:13

    The home show I attended in Des Moines , Iowa this past summer had a lot of new and innovative ideas that left me dreaming big! It was great to finally see homes without the beige/brown/black counters! Everything was bright, light, with hidden pantries, cool features like unexpected flooring, “hidden” rooms, unique layouts – not a lot of cookie-cutter designs. The homes were in the 500k range on up to a million I think? While that’s not my price range, it was great for ideas! Even had countertops that will charge your phones! Surprised me considering I feel Iowa and the midwest is puffy beige furniture central!

    • Amy 24.02.2016 at 01:20

      Nice! I agree about the midwest. I am thinking I want to visit Des Moines parade of homes…do you know when it is ?

  • Dani 23.02.2016 at 18:48

    The last homeshow I went to was underwhelming to me too. Everything just looked the same! It was all monochrome and felt uber trendy.

  • Kemley Peck 23.02.2016 at 19:01

    I always go to the Utah County Parade of Homes and while some of it is beige and dark and kinda outdated I’ve noticed that most of it is actually pretty modern. Lots of white and cool tile and amazing light fixtures. I noticed a lot of penny tile, floating shelves, sliding barn doors. One house had some awesome painted brick rather than rock, etc. Much more cool and updated than the typical used house for sale in UT county (tan stucco, etc). Some of the furniture and looks are not my style but a lot of it is pretty cool. I like to go to get inspiration even though I would design things a little different in my own home. I noticed some cool mid century furniture in some houses (new mid century not REAL mid century) but that is a look I’m really into.

  • Tiffany 23.02.2016 at 19:07

    I am designing my unfinished basement. I would like to do all recessed lighting but but because of venting in half of the ceiling space I am looking for a cool low profile lighting option, other than 39 dollar boob lights, that doesn’t break the bank. I’m wondering if any of these homes had ideas in their basements?

  • AnnW 23.02.2016 at 21:06

    Vintage furniture might be the wrong scale for houses like these with 12-15 ft ceilings. MCM might work in a small office or sitting room, but would look like doll house furniture in the other rooms. I have all black granite countertops that I put in three years ago! I guess I am completely out of date. I really wanted soapstone, like a chemistry lab, but I got convinced to try the solid black granite.

  • Jeanna 24.02.2016 at 00:15

    I love the Parade of Homes :) While a tremendous amount of the homes that I fall in love with are out of my price range forever and ever, I come away with ideas…………….. lots of ideas for color, or new materials being used in a unique way, or a lovely piece of furniture in a fabric I’m not familiar with.

  • Jodi worthington 24.02.2016 at 00:43

    All the houses were beautiful, loved the one on foremaster ridge and view on that looker out in Ivins, and Marie’s of course! Her grandkids are sure lucky! We are a building an addition to our Washington Fields home and I got a lot of great ideas. I saw all houses in two days but took lots of pictures, one thing I’m going for sure, that took away from the parade, brick walls, quartz counter tops, steam shower and an outdoor show! As for furniture, everything I have and will ever own is secondhand and older than dirt! I love you and your style, I miss seeing ya at the DI. PS Durangos turned out awesome and always delish!!

  • Ananda 24.02.2016 at 01:09

    Your blog is so junked up with ads that I cant even read a post. Every time I try to scroll the popups, videos and other ads take over. Your pictures are replaced by videos trying to sell me crap. It’s awful.

    • Laura 24.02.2016 at 02:04

      read her blog via Facebook and you won’t have any ads popping up.
      I don’t mind ads because to me they mean Mandi’s paying her mortgage doing what she loves.

    • Jamie Rowe 24.02.2016 at 12:58

      That’s weird. I have one little ad at the bottom of my screen. I usually read her blog on my phone though, like right now I am in the parking lot of my daughter’s school wasting time before I tutor. 😁

    • Mandi 24.02.2016 at 16:42

      Hey Ananda!
      Thanks so much for the feedback! Would you mind letting me now what type of device you are on? There shouldn’t be any videos or pop-ups at all, so I’d love to look into it more!


  • Jamie Rowe 24.02.2016 at 12:55

    I feel like you. While the houses are not my style, I prefer a vintage bohemian look, I can appreciate the beauty of these houses. There is a style for everyone and each house had some really cool design elements. The HD tile?!?! Love it!!!

  • Rebecca Scanlon 25.02.2016 at 21:22

    Hi Mandy! I’m wondering if I can trouble you to find out which house the Home Depot tile bathroom was in. I am trying to find the light fixtures. Thanks in advance if you can reply to me.
    Banging her head against the wall trying to find a light fixture 😜

    • Sofia 01.03.2016 at 19:51

      I’m dying to know where the sconces are from too!

  • Lyndee Henrichsen 26.02.2016 at 02:03

    My sisters, mom, and I decided to have a girls weekend to enjoy the Parade of Homes. I was amazed at how much inspiration I got. I am a bit disappointed at how popular barn doors are since I plan to put some in my own home (I’m not one to follow trends) but at least I’ve got several different ideas of ways I can do it! I also noticed which colors stuck out that I liked so I took note of what makes me happy and can add it to my own home.

    • Mandi 26.02.2016 at 06:37

      There was a ton of them right?!


  • Vintage Revivals | 10 Tile Patterns You’ll Never Believe Are From Home Depot 29.02.2016 at 19:19

    […] designs.  I thought that everyone knew how great their options were until I talked about the tile in the Parade House that was from HD and everyone was shocked. So I thought it would be fun to round up a few of my […]

  • Misty Carone 02.03.2016 at 06:41

    Sooo….I happened to check out a whopping ONE whole house on the tour. I was visiting my parents from SoCal (who moved to St. George one year ago) and they had purchased tickets and already paraded through them all before I arrived. I had my two young girls in the car and they fell asleep, so we just drove by a chunk of them. They woke up just in time for us to view house #23 “Cliff Point”. Holy money is right! It wasn’t my style but it was pretty dang glamorous. I’ll definitely be making the drive out to your neck of the woods again next year to cruise through all of the homes, already looking forward to it. My interest is definitely in finding inspiration in decor, style, color schemes, and texture/pattern combos. I also get a big burst of motivation to declutter and minimize my space after seeing how nice and clean these houses are. Sure, they’re on display and not being lived in…but I’ll take any motivation I can get!


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