Location: Paris, France
Owned since: 2004
Last week we visited Debra's recently renovated apartment. Turns out she also has a second apartment in the Marais that she decorated in an altogether different style...
This one is a 25m2 studio in an 18th-century building in the Marais that she bought in 2004 as a rental apartment, but she decorated it in a personal style. "I had myself in mind when I decorated it," Debra says, pointing out that she stays here occasionally to see what it's like to live in the space. "Otherwise you don't know what's working and what's not."
She bought the place in 2004, painted the beams on the low ceiling white satin to reflect light and prevent a claustrophobic feel. And she decorated the cozy place with a 1960s and 70s Swedish vibe based around a thing she had at the time for avocado green (note the color of the toilet seat). "I was working a lot in Scandinavia at the time," she says, pointing out the second-hand furniture, dishes, and accessories she picked up there and at brocantes around Paris.
The apartment has a small kitchen separated from the bedroom by a white string curtain. The remodeled bathroom -- a toilet and a spacious shower and sink -- is masked behind sliding glass doors, making it disappear when the doors are closed. "There's no couch," she says, "but there's a good bed and three chairs and a table if you don't want to sit on the bed." A piece of furniture that holds the TV folds into a secretary desk and there's wifi so people can get online or work at home as need be. Books about Paris, an old movie poster of Mon Oncle, and an African-made Eiffel Tower on a shelf from CSAO give it a lived-in feel. "It's all about making it comfortable but affordable for people who are renting short-term," Debra says. "I can't do Roche Bobois everywhere -- actually I can't even do it for myself!"
- Kristin Hohenadel blogging from rue Vieille du Temple, Paris, France. If you have an idea for a European house tour, please write kristinh @ apartmenttherapy . com