Happy Place

An East Sider uses fabric and paint to create a joyful home


In the appealing neighborhood known as both Hope and Summit depending on who you ask, is the cheerful abode of the Moraes family of four. Like many living in this area, home refers to a single story of a three-family house. “Just because we don’t own the property, it can still feel like ours,” says Ale Moraes, who was attracted to the open feel of the floor plan. While Moraes would have preferred white walls, her design style works so well with the existing cerulean of the main room, it’s as if the wall color was by her own design. A photographer originally from Brazil, Moraes says the key to making a place feel uniquely yours is to infuse spaces with personality using plants, art, and textiles. Her job at Kreatelier, a nearby shop known for reviving furniture with fabrics, lead her to discovering a passion for home decor. “I have always loved color and pattern but did not fully embrace it until I started working [at Kreatelier]. Beautiful fabrics inspire me,” she says. Since taking sewing classes at the shop, Moraes has created everything from pillows to window panels to wall art. The bright red table, which pops against the wall color, was a roadside find which she painted, topped with mosaic-work by her mother-in-law. And while her husband doesn’t always notice the decorating changes, at least their four-year old son does. “He’ll say, ‘Mommy, this is so beautiful!’ I am teaching him well!”

Find Ale Moraes’ handiwork at Etsy