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For our summer catalog, we went on location to Stiltsville, a collection of wood stilt houses rising from the water on the edge of Miami’s Biscayne Bay!

Siltsville was founded in the 1930s, and before long it was a veritable village of 27 private sea shacks, where anyone with a boat and an invitation could escape the reach of prohibition.

For decades, Stiltsville remained a mischievous refuge for well-heeled Miamians to relax. Today, only 7 of the stilt houses are left, and they’re owned by the National Park Service.

Stiltsville’s renegade aura is now a thing of the past, but it still feels like a different world, and it was an incredible place to shoot our new summer collection! Just take a look at some of our outtakes and behind-the-scenes photos.

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Mary K Marino

May 19, 2013

Can’t wait to see more!

TGB

May 24, 2013

Incredibly beautiful! What a fun idea and a great place for a shoot.

Ma Claudia

May 24, 2013

I think is where you want to be…
Thanks for sharing 1111
Do they rent this place?

James Junker

May 24, 2013

Thats living the life. Talk about authentic! Tankd for sharing the behind the scenes. Would like to see more.

Corinne

May 24, 2013

Had my 4oth birthday celebration there in 1988. Nothing like it.

Jessica

May 24, 2013

great photos! Cant wait to see more!

Barb Schaum

May 24, 2013

Wonderful shots so envious

Cara Hartfield

May 24, 2013

Now I love West Elm even more! I have wanted to visit Stiltsville since I read about it in a Carl Hiaasen novel a few years ago. Would love to see more pictures!

Sara Ogg

May 24, 2013

GORGEOUS!!!

Nancy

May 24, 2013

I never heard of Stiltsville and I thank WE for sharing these beautiful pics with us. Very smart of you to send the e-mail describing it all – otherwise I would have just looked at the catalog without really noticing the scenery.

Monika

May 24, 2013

Love it! I actually grew up in Miami and we used to go to Stiltsville all the time with our boat. Spent a lot of time there; we used to pick up jellyfish with a net and watch the sharks at feeding time swimming around the docks. Brings back great memories. Thank you.

Carole Heroux

May 24, 2013

Attended many impromptu parties there in the late seventies. Wiill never forget it!! Magnificent!!!!

Luciana Barreto

May 24, 2013

Magnificient!!! I have been around by boat but never in any of them… They look amazing. Great idea!!! I want to see the catalog.

Janice Fingado

May 24, 2013

Loved seeing “backstage” on your photo shoot; those sunset photos were so serene.

Sara

May 26, 2013

We have been a member there for 28 years and have watched our family have many happy times at the house. My son even learned how to walk out there because he couldn’t crawl on the docks. We are now retired and hope to spend many more years enjoying the view.

Knicker

May 26, 2013

What I think is…I want to see more of the same but fish shaped designs,
Would be really kool candle holders hanging and gentlu blowing in the breeze !

TMW

May 28, 2013

This is one of those places I’ve always wanted to go and see. Thanks for the virtual experience of it.

Stiltsville | NYC Expeditionist

May 29, 2013

[…] Today, the National Parks Service owns the remaining seven structures. (None of which existed since Stiltsville’s founding.) And no one lives there; their future usage is being debated. Some ideas are community centers, artist residences, research facilities, satellite NPS offices. In the meantime, people are granted access to the houses, on occasion—I actually learned of Stiltsville from West Elm, who shot their catalog there! […]

saroy This 'n That | saroy

June 12, 2013

[…] read West Elm’s blog from time to time, and last week they posted about their summer catalog shoot in Stiltsville in Biscayne Bay near Miami. I think this place is so cool! I remember seeing houses out in the […]

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