I’m taking a break from featuring reader home tours, but I finally took some photos of my own place one day after a deep cleaning and thought I’d share them with you (full disclosure: I first submitted a few of them to Apartment Therapy, my favorite design site, in hopes of having the apartment featured, but no one there ever responded. Boo). In the interest of continuity, I’ll fill in the same questionnaire I’ve had readers answer in the past:
Your Name: Wendy!
Where is the location of your home? Brooklyn, New York (Prospect Heights).
What type of property is it? A rental apartment in a brownstone.
How many years have you lived there? Two years.
How many people (and pets) reside there? Two very sane and rational adults, one crazy baby, and two crazy cats.
What’s your favorite thing about your home? It’s a three-way tie: central air; washer and dryer; dishwasher. The big walk-in closet is a very close second. The terrace takes third place.
If you could change one thing about it, what would that be? Another tie: bigger and more natural light. It’s a typical New York apartment in that it’s very small (the living room is essentially a hallway, and somewhat cave-like, especially in the middle where there are no windows. But these are minor issues (well, eventually the size issue will be a deal-breaker, but we’re not there yet); I love this apartment and am very happy here.
I had two inspirations when thinking about decorating this place: I wanted it to feel like a boutique hotel so that we might always imagine we’re on vacation; and I wanted to incorporate the colors of the beach because I love the beach and don’t get to go enough anymore, so we painted the walls the colors of sand, sea, sun and sky.
Lots more photos after the jump:
The framed poster is a picture of a bridge in Central Park (I found it on Fab.com–love that site!). Drew proposed to me on a bridge in Central Park. On the table is a photo that my sister took at our wedding reception — it’s one of my favorites. And the lamp belonged to my paternal grandparents; my parents bought it for them when my parents lived in Japan, where I was born.
I love this little corner and I wish I could say we used it more. I envisioned it being a reading corner, but the truth is I do most of my reading either in bed before I go to sleep or on the subway. The blue chair got a lot of use during Jackson’s early months when we were feeding him around-the-clock. I found the stacking tables on Craigslist, the lamp at a thrift shop, and the air plant at a flea market. The chair was a splurge that we bought new from Room & Board (one of few things we’ve bought brand new). The blanket was from my in-laws and the pillow I found on Etsy.
Another splurge was this king-size bed. Most relationship experts would probably advise against a king-size bed, but we love it. There’s plenty of room for us, Jackson, and the two cats on a cozy Sunday morning. The framed postcards above the bed were collected from all the places Drew and I have traveled together, including New Jersey (don’t knock it ’til you try it) and Rock Falls, Illinois (where one of my besties grew up).
Our bedroom furniture belonged to my maternal grandparents who bought it when their kids were small (in the 50s). The set was kept in the bedroom where I always stayed during the summer, so there’s something very comforting about having it in my bedroom as an adult. There’s a lot of history in them drawers. Oh, and there’s a shout-out to Chicago, my home away from home.
The framed pictures above the table are a few of Drew’s old comic strip, “The Adventures of a Tuna Fish Sandwich.” There’s also a black and white Mr. T salt and pepper shaker on the table — a housewarming gift from a friend — which is probably the second biggest conversation-starter piece in the place).
The kitchen! Can you spot the dishwasher in this photo?
I scored those screens at a garage sale. The plant stand is from a thrift store, as is the bench, which I painted red because it’s my favorite accent color. The china cabinet, my favorite piece of furniture we own, belonged to my great-great-grandparents and most recently spent several decades in my grandparents’ basement. That shit is old.
Booze and babies!
The booth — the top conversation piece. Drew got it years ago at a restaurant wholesale shop that was going out of business. It’s totally clawed up from the cats, hence the blanket.
The “office.” Of course, the office used to be what is now Jackson’s room. When trying to figure out where we could move our desk and carve out a little corner of the apartment for work — essential for someone like me who works from home — this was my solution. It works pretty well.
Guess whose room this is. Shelf from Craigslist (we painted it “Jackson blue”). Lamp from Target. Art work by ME (it’s an owl collage made out of an origami). Drew’s cousin had the cute footstool made (the design matches Jackson’s bedding).
There’s the little stinker! The dresser is from a flea market and is the perfect size for a little boy’s room. We replaced the hardware with pulls I found at Anthropologie. The trunk was a Craigslist find.
The three framed illustrations above the chair are Drew originals. The chair is a Craigslist find that we had reupholstered with fabric we found at Mood – THE Mood. Crane mobile from Etsy. Curtains from Urban Outfitters. The paintings in back are from a flea market in Beijing.
“Let me out, Mama! I wanna play!!”