When Tina and Jack Fussell got married, they made a pact to save money instead of purchase a house so that they would be able to achieve their dream of living abroad. While such a daunting movement may deter some, Jack, a nonprofit consultant and freelance photographer, and Tina, a freelance writer, photographer and writer of the well-loved blog Traveling Mama, have managed to bring their dreams to fruition — a feat made all the more striking with three kids in tow. In the years since leaving their roots in Atlanta, the traveling family has created houses in Spain, Morocco and now Copenhagen, Denmark.
About strategies to move again, Tina says, “We hope to be here for a while. Denmark is a superb place to raise kids, and all three of them are very happy here. While we miss the sense of experience and newness that comes along with moving to a different country, I believe we could go a little crazy if we had to learn a fifth language!” So for now (and possibly for good), the Fussell clan is settling in.
in a Glance
Who lives here: Tina and Jack Fussell and their 3 kids, Hailey, Parker and Landon
Location: Copenhagen, Denmark
Size: 1,400 square feet
That is intriguing: Wood furniture is hard to locate in Denmark, so Tina treasures the couple wood bits she has.
Vase: Kahler; pillows: Ikea, H&M, Bungalow and Zara Home
On the house search in Copenhagen, the Fussells had their eye on a charming neighborhood close to town center. In reality, when their broker let them understand a distance was available in their ideal neighborhood, Tina says, “we advised the broker before we saw the location that we would take it”
The decorative is clean and pared down, yet hot. In the living room, a pair of white finish tables with a lavish throw, armfuls of patterned pillows, floor cushions and smallish treasures add richness to a chocolate sofa.
Of course, the family did have a look inside, and they were smitten. With beautiful white floors, a unique attic and gorgeous all-natural lighting, the space was not possible to pass up.
A large blank wall in the living room was calling for major art, but instead of spring for a costly piece, Tina loaded up on substances and created her own painting.
The wooden cabinet is among the bits Tina brought along in their house in America. She gave the piece a sleek update with charcoal paint to meet their urban space.
Tina supplied her studio using cheap principles from Ikea, subsequently gave the space a personal touch with a massive (and ever-changing) inspiration plank, artwork from favored individual artists and treasures in the family’s journeys.
Tables, shelving, frames, light: Ikea; calendar: Ink+Wit; art: Tollipop and The Black Apple
“My studio is where I live,” Tina says. “I spend more time there than in my bed! I love with a place to make and dream, and I particularly love that my kids have their own chairs and provides, so it is not really my space, but ours.”
Developing a house that feels like home is particularly important to Tina, as the household has had to install numerous different spaces through the years. Her best trick for settling in quickly? “I advocate hanging art, photos, and truly living in our space.”
From the master bedroom, a very simple clothes rack from Ikea provides both storage plus an eye-catching screen, because of Tina’s attentive styling.
Clothing rack: Ikea; coverlet: vintage; bird printing: Mai Autumn
Choosing to display clothes in a tightly edited colour palette helps the rack look chic and intentional instead of cluttered — other garments hide behind closed doors.
On what she loves most about their house, Tina says, “I love the white walls, the painted white floors and also the fact that my kids can run outside and play. We are within walking or biking distance to great shops, restaurants and cafés, so it seems a little like we have everything.”
Seat: purchased in the U.S.; cross pillow: Enhabiten; fur: Ikea; ruched pillow: H&M
White floors such as those in the Fussell house are quite common throughout Scandinavia. “The floors were painted when we moved, however they had been primed and then painted using a high-gloss floor paint,” Tina says. “They scratch and nick pretty readily, which entirely stressed out me initially, but they have a nice lived-in appearance to them that I really like.”
And the real secret? “The secret is that they aren’t always clean! We really do clean them regularly,” Tina says, “but that I had to take following the first month of nonstop cleaning that I was going to need to not take the task quite so badly. We also make our kids eat in the table to maintain the mess somewhat confined.”
Lighting, cabinet, mirror: Ikea; birds: Brinja København
A few personal details improve the bathroom’s fundamental palette of white tile and gray sink. A pale blue carpet and mocha-colored towels soften the space, and glass jars hold essentials.
Sculptural twig hooks on the bathroom wall hold favored jewelry.
Twig hooks: Urban Outfitters
From the boys’ shared space, matching natural wood beds and bedding in neutral tones maintain the small space feeling serene and peaceful.
Beds, striped blankets: Ikea
After transferring a lot of occasions, Tina has learned by requirement to pare down their possessions — which leads to a space that’s beautifully organized, even with three kids in the house.
Artwork: Matte Stephans and Dazey Chic
“I believe storage is key and being extremely organized,” Tina says. “That is the largest place we have lived in years, so we are constantly editing our things so we don’t feel like the walls are going to close in on us. If something isn’t useful, beautiful or sentimental, then it will likely be heading into the charity store.”
Indaughter Hailey’s space, paper decorations and framed DIY typography created from Japanese washi cassette include a sweet touch.
Seat, light: Ikea
A parade of horses looks tidy and neat lined up from the window ledge from greatest to smallest.
Favorite artwork, a vase ofbranches and ornamental boxes line the very top of Hailey’s dresser.
Artwork: The Black Apple
For a quick and economical upgrade, new knobs from Danish manufacturer House Doctor give Hailey’s dresser a personalized look.
One of the loveliest things about the Fussell house is the simple blending of styles, the natural outcome of the household’s having traveled extensively.
“I feel like everywhere we go and everywhere we have been has influenced the people we are, the way we live and the house we create together,” Tina says. “I want to stay among my journeys, feel them around me once I wake up and when I move about my daily life. “
Mirror: purchased in Morocco
“Traveling and moving into numerous diverse areas has made me extremely receptive to new ideas,” she adds. “I am constantly changing things up in my house, trying new things, since I really have hardly any fears in regards to designing an area for us to live in.”
Printing, carpet: purchased in Morocco
The dining space, found here dressed for a party, is a light and sunny space. The star of the show is certainly that gorgeous turquoise cabinet.
“that I purchased it in Copenhagen, however it is from Eastern Europe,” Tina says. “When I opened the doors and breathed in the scent of the wood inside, I was instantly transported to my closet in Morocco, and that I couldn’t leave the shop without it. Maybe it’s silly to buy something due to the way it smells, but I just had to have it. It is also tough to locate wood furniture in Denmark, so it is an extra-special find.”
Lighting: Normann Copenhagen; darkened vase: Kahler; black motorcycle basket: Design House Stockholm
The kitchen is bright and airy too, with sleek modern appliances, floating white shelvesand carefully chosen accessories in white, black and wood.
Bowl: Lucie Kaas
A corner window allows the sunlight to flow in over the kitchen prep area.
Bread box, cutting board: Joseph Joseph; basket: Muuto; storage jar: Orla Kiely; print: Whimsy & Spice
Wooden utensils, favorite cookbooks and often used tools stay within reach on the counter tops.
The coffee bar retains all the essentials at hand, using a cheerful print marking the spot.
Printing: Produced By Girl
Does she’s a prized possession? “When you have moved 20 times in 13 years, lived on three continents and marketed everything you owned double, possessions turned into a tricky issue,” Tina says. “If requested at the ideal time I might say that I have no precious possessions apart from my husband and kids, which of course aren’t really possessions but what I prize.”
“But when the house were burning down,” she adds, “I know I’d running around like a madwoman, grabbing photos and the art and trinkets we have gathered from our journeys. I may even beg my husband to help me haul the turquoise cabinet out of the dining room very quickly.”
Tina’s final term for any readers who could be dreaming of living abroad: “Do it! It’s crazy and wild from time to time, but life-changing and amazing, too!”