The Bachelor's Ben and Lauren Get Real About Moving In Together and Give Us a Peek Inside Their Cozy Lovenest
By the time Ben Higgins gave Lauren Bushnell the final rose on The Bachelor, he had been living in a Denver, CO, apartment for about six months. While the cozy apartment had great bones, interior design wasn't a priority for Ben; in fact, beyond his couch, futon from college, and deer antlers above the fireplace, he says he hadn't done much to decorate the place, so he was more than happy to let his now-fiancé Lauren infuse the space with style.
"When it came to this project, I did try to stay out of it. She's moving into this house, and I wanted her to feel like this is home. If I was to choose everything, it wouldn't feel like that," he says.
Lauren set out bringing light and airy colors to the space. She says, "I feel like I kind of brought a piece of California with me to Ben's home in Denver. But I didn't want to make it feel too feminine — I'm moving into his house, so I tried to keep him in mind as well." To give the design project a professional polish, the couple teamed up with online home retailer Joss & Main, working with the company's main style director, Donna Garlough. Take a look at Ben and Lauren's beautifully made-over space and learn more about what the couple had to say about moving in together ahead. Then, visit Joss & Main to shop a curated selection of items from their home.
"I have a set of watercolors that were painted by a friend — they have a lot of light pastels and these clean-lined, white frames. They really inspired the entire space, and now they're hanging above our dining table," says Lauren. For the rest of the apartment's decor, she says, "I just browsed Joss & Main — they have so many great pieces; you can really transform your whole home right from their website. I, of course, picked out way too many items for our very small bungalow home. So I narrowed down my favorites, added them to my Idea Boards, and then the Joss & Main design team was gracious enough to mock them up, pull in finishing touches, and help us zero in on a final look. We're both very thankful Joss & Main was here to help — from frames to light fixtures, their team knew exactly what was needed to bring the whole space together." Ben adds, "It took the stress off me."
The bedroom needed a lot of help becoming unbachelorized. There were no curtains or rug. Lauren explains, "It was all brown, and his bedding was brown. Everything was brown . . . it didn't have a lot of texture, either. It kind of made me just want to go to sleep, and then just close the door to the bedroom in the morning and not let anyone in there." Ben jokingly justifies his dark decor by explaining he's "more of a rustic person, like lodge-y."
Ben and Lauren both agree that the living room, where they spend most of their time, is their favorite space in the house. Ben explains, "It's bright, it has beautiful windows, it still has the original 100-year-old hardwood floors, and now it has beautiful furniture."
"Part of why this project was so important to me, besides my passion for design, was to create a place that was both of ours," Lauren says. "We're in the next chapter of our relationship — planning a wedding and building a home. That means getting rid of things from when we were a bachelor or bachelorette. And I think that's okay, because it's the memories that count, not the piece of furniture they were created around."
When asked to finish the sentence, "Home is . . ." Lauren responded, "Home is cozy, and where the people you love are. Home is a feeling, not necessarily things — but there are pieces, like a soft throw or comfy sofa, that help make a house your home."
And Ben replied, "Home for me is really where I lay my head at night. And I think it's the place that, like Lauren said, is where your loved ones are."
While it was hard for Ben to let go of some of his old furniture, he admits that he loves the new couch and the "Chewbacca pillows." He adds, "I also love the marble table — I think it's classy, it's sophisticated, and it looks good with a cocktail on it!"
Ben says the hardest part of moving in together wasn't making physical space for Lauren in his home, but the feeling of unsettledness as he watches the woman he loves find her place in Denver. "She moved here and started a whole new life. So I think it's been hard to see through her eyes how new this is." Lauren echoes his sentiment, explaining, "I think it's not necessarily moving in together, but moving to a new city can be hard. It's a lot of change in itself — a home, making new friends and being newly engaged . . . It's a sense of starting over, which is exciting and presents a certain challenge that I like, but it also can be a little bit overwhelming sometimes."
Ben graciously made room for Lauren, even moving all his clothes to the basement so she could have the closet on the first level and adding air conditioning to keep the home cool on hot Summer days. He says it was "one of the best purchases I've ever made in my life. Maybe THE best. And I did it just for Lauren because I knew that being hot all the time in the Summer wasn't going to be a great option."