Angie & Josh's Cat & Design Friendly Home

House Tour

Name: Contract Specialist Angie Lucia and Graphic Designer Josh Gomby
Location: Silver Spring, Maryland
Size: 850 square feet
Years lived in: 1 year, 6 mos, Renting

I met Angie on my first day of college, years ago, when she was the RA (Resident Assistant) of my dormitory in Maryland. I discovered she had great taste in music by the selection of indie bands she was playing in her room. What I didn't know was that years later I would be invited into the home that she shares with her husband Josh, and discover her equally excellent taste in home decor and graphic design. 

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The couple found their home thanks to a small group of residents in Silver Spring, Maryland who were interested in preserving some of the area's older buildings and their unique charm. Condos and luxury apartments are being thrown up all around the D.C metropolitan area, and Silver Spring, just 10 minutes north of the city, with its slightly cheaper housing costs, has been experiencing considerable growth. This apartment was the first and only one Angie and Josh looked at before signing their lease — it was love at first sight. 

The creative thread of Josh's career in graphic design runs throughout the home in posters he's designed and prints and skateboards from fellow artists. I loved that Angie and Josh share my affinity for mid-century furniture. A beautiful vintage credenza, inherited from a former landlord, makes up their entertainment system, and mid-century style chairs are used as decor and at Josh's work desk in the living room. A fabulous 1950s-style table that was a Craigslist find sits in the kitchen nook.

And of course, we can't forget the cats. Angie and Josh are a self-described cat mom and dad duo who provide the most comfortable environment possible for their feline friends. A quick glance at their cats nestling on the bed or the couch in their familiar corners shows they feel right at home.

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Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Josh is the stylish one. He is a designer and an artist. He's definitely taught me how to appreciate the amount of craftsmanship that goes into furniture, art, etc, and how to see the beauty in simplicity. His style of design is very clean and structured — it's like he sees blank spaces in a grid. It's quite amazing. You can see his influence in our apartment through the symmetry in prints and shapes — it's almost mathematical. My style is pretty fluid — depending on the purpose of the room, I may fall somewhere between vintage/feminine/flowery/rustic to straight-up Scandavian minimalism. I like to focus on the overall aesthetic and how I want a space to feel. I enjoy finding new ways to use color, texture, and layout to change up a room. It took a couple of years for our styles to come together, but I think we've managed to find our own groove.

Favorite Element: Josh's favorite element is the artwork. Some of it is from his friends in Rochester, some was made by him, and some came from random places in Baltimore (the city where we met and fell in love!). My favorite element is a tie between our yellow kitchen table and chairs and the graphic mirror in our bathroom. We purchased both elements during our first year of living together in Baltimore, while we were slowly weaning ourselves off of old college furniture that we had been lugging around for 3-5 years. The table and chairs were a Craigslist find of mine. I had been looking for a 50s/diner style kitchen table for a couple of months. Josh was a teeny bit reluctant to purchase it, but I was able to convince him that it was a worthwhile investment. He didn't share my vision! Haha! The graphic mirror in the bathroom is called "Orbital Fantasy." When we saw it in the consignment shop, I wanted to vomit (it looked like a prop straight out of Boogie Nights). However, Josh was in love. I obviously didn't share his vision. It takes a lot of trust to let your partner purchase something you think is so ugly, but both elements ended up working out really well and have become pretty fun conversation pieces.

Biggest Challenge: Our biggest challenge was figuring out how to transform our bedroom from the most hated room in our apartment to the most loved. When we finished putting together our bed and dresser, we noticed that the color of the wood was very close to that of the carpet and the walls. The room was a creamy, beige, boring box. Josh's friend, Drew Altdoerffer, took some amazing landscape photos on his travels abroad and gifted them to us. They are now the focal point of our bedroom. I read somewhere (now don't judge) that Alexa Chung starts her outfit with her shoes. I think we applied the same concept to our bedroom and allowed the texture and colors of Drew's photos to influence the rest of the room. Once you find something that inspires you, everything else seems to flow.

What Friends Say: Our friends and family say that our apartment feels warm and inviting. We love playing host and want our guests to enjoy themselves and feel at home when we're all together.

Biggest Embarrassment: Our biggest embarrassment is our cat furniture. We don't have a 10-foot carpeted tower (ours is only 3 feet), but we do have a lot of scratching posts, sisal mats, and makeshift cat beds! We're quick to hide it all when we have guests over, but just as quick to take them back out for our cats to enjoy and use.  It's their home just as much as it is ours! We're big cat people.

Proudest DIY: All of the framing, mat cutting, and hanging of artwork was done by Josh. We haven't tackled too many huge DIY projects since our wedding, but my dream project is to refinish our coffee table and entertainment center/credenza given to us by our former landlord in Baltimore.

Biggest Indulgence: Buying and framing the artwork in our home. We found American Frame online, and they were really great to work with.

Best Advice: Be patient and don't feel the need to furnish all of your rooms at once. We made that mistake when we moved into a huge two-bedroom apartment in Baltimore. We had to get rid of half of our belongings to move into our current home and realized that a lot of the things we purchased were not because we necessarily liked them, but because we felt the need to fill the space.
 
Dream Sources: Josh's dream source is Design Within Reach — a veritable gold mine of furniture from the who's who of modern furniture design. My dream source is my grandma's home. She has a gorgeous Asian tea set gifted to her on her wedding day, a Victorian curio cabinet, various large floor vases, and a ridiculously huge ornate mirror, among other family treasures.

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Resources of Note:

LIVING ROOM
• Bar cart: Angie's Grandmother's
• Globe: Delaware consignment shop
• Credenza/Entertainment System: Free from landlord
• TV: Wedding Gift
• Lamp: Ikea
• Rug: Ikea
• Table: Left by Landlord
• Couch, Ottoman, and Throws: Ikea
• Yellow leather chair: Ryan's Relics
• Lantern: Ikea
• Darboard: Goodwill
• Desk: Counter top; legs Ikea
• Yellow desk chair: Craigslist find
• Helvetica Prints: Josh designed for the screening of the film
• Colored Painting: Josh's mom painted while in college
• Globe light: Ikea
• Artwork: Shepard Fairey, Alien Workshop Steve Berra Andy Warhol Collab, Adam Francey, Erich Lehman for Krudco, Mike Turzanski, Audrey Kawasaki, St. Monci
• Helvetica Posters: Love/Hate Posters created by Josh
• Helvetica Film Poster: created by Experimental Jetset

KITCHEN
    • Table: Craigslist find
    • Cart: Joshs' grandmother's
    • Shelving: Ikea• Rug: Urban Outfitters
    • Lantern: Ikea
    • Chairs: Ryan's Relics
    • Prints: Etsy prints
BEDROOM
• Dresser and Bed: Ikea
• Photographs: Drew Altdoerffer
• Angie's walking stick: Wood in Baltimore
• Mirror and Chair: Ikea
• Painting: Visionary Museum of Baltimore
• Curtains: Ikea
• School chairs: Gift from friend
• Pillows: Ikea
• Lamps: Ikea and Target

BATHROOM:
    •  Rug: HomeGoods
    • Black and white screen printed art: Ryan's Relics

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Thanks, Angie and Josh!

(Images: Nicole Crowder)

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