Name: Brittany Skwierczynski and Brittany Purlee
Location: Wicker Park — Chicago, Illinois
Size: 1,070 square feet
Years lived in: 3 years; Rented
Graphic designer Brittany Skwierczynski and photographer Brittany Purlee, art school classmates and friends reunited in Chicago, have collaborated in styling a two bedroom apartment in Wicker Park. This bright, lively space is a direct reflection of both of their creative backgrounds and welcoming personalities. The two have curated the space to highlight the tall ceilings, abundance of light, and wooden floors of the old apartment building.
Though the two roommates have their own unique tastes, they share an affinity for clean lines, playfulness, simplicity, and modernity. Balance is maintained through a muted palette with controlled pops of vibrant colors and texture. An assortment of plants and Brittany S’s own artwork bring life into nearly every room. Brittany P’s music-filled workspace adds a welcoming and relaxing ambiance. Their artfully arranged collections, playful decorations, and design curios shine while maintaining a cleanliness that’s easy on the eyes. Brittany S's expert graphic design sensibilities are put to use in the living area to maintain a cheerful yet peaceful vibe, which plays well with Brittany P’s simplistic, monochromatic approach in the office/music room. Though both tenants prize careful precision, their home doesn’t exclude the soulful warmth that gives Chicago character.
Apartment Therapy Survey:
My Style: We value clean design and function, with personality shining through. We like keeping the furniture simple and white, almost as an extension of the walls, allowing our belongings and personalities to pop.
Inspiration: Brittany P: The quest for calm, function, and minimalism. I gather a lot of inspiration from the spaces of other creatives I know. I want my space to function as a blank canvas for living creatively.
Favorite Element: Brittany P: I love the peacefulness that my bedroom palette provides. I also love the bookshelf that my grandpa realized from my design.
Brittany S: Though I love many things about my home, my favorite element is the one with the strongest personal significance. After my wonderful great-grandmother passed, we found a crumpled paper with a draft of a note to me for my high school graduation. I immediately found the perfect frame and can now look at that message to bring back warm memories whenever I want.
Biggest Challenge: Brittany S: I have gotten used to moving every year or two and getting to decorate and arrange a new space with every move. Because of that, my biggest challenge is having lived in the same rental unit for nearly three years and always wanting to change something! Maybe it's time to change it up.
Brittany P: Living in a rental always has its challenges, but I would have to say my biggest challenge is living on a budget with expensive taste. The smaller/unique room layouts compared to my previous place also made it a challenge to arrange my furniture to maintain the sparseness that I love.
What Friends Say: Friends and family are always impressed by how nice our apartment is, and love to gather here.
Biggest Embarrassment: Brittany S: I'm not a huge fan of the kitchen. It was the one room that was underwhelming when we saw the apartment. However, if we stick around, I'd love to improve it by installing a backsplash behind the sink and stove along with some lights under the cabinets
Brittany P: I wish we had a dining table to invite friends over for meals, but since I work from home, there was just no space for one.
Proudest DIY: Brittany S: I haven't done many DIY projects, but I love the simple addition behind my Ikea Stave Mirror. The mirror comes with hinges in case you want to angle it, but in case you don't the hinges can turn the mirror into a place to hide your necklaces. I screwed in several rows of L hooks by hand and now my necklaces are out of sight and easily accessible!
This not really my DIY, but my grandfather brought my bookshelf design to life, and I love it.
Biggest Indulgence: That comfy West Elm couch was a great investment.
Best Advice: Brittany P: Less is more.
Resources of Note:
- Couch: West Elm
- Rug: Urban Outfitters
- Floor lamp: West Elm
- Yellow chairs: West Elm
- White Storage Ottoman: Crate and Barrel
- Bookshelf: Ikea
- White collapsable table: Ikea
- Dreams Print: Seb Lester
- You are Beautiful cutout: Matthew Hoffman
- Abstract Letterpress Print: Geri McCormick of Virgin Wood Type
BRITTANY S'S OFFICE
- Shelving/Desk: Ikea
- Artwork: The Lepolas
- Lamp: Target
BRITTANY P'S OFFICE
- Stump: found and finished by her Father
- Rug: Ikea
- Desk: Ikea
- Balans chair: craigslist
- Desk lamp: Restoration Hardware
- Wall lamp: Ikea
- Mirror: flea market
- Locker cabinet: Ikea
- Bookshelf: self-designed and grandpa built
BRITTANY S'S BEDROOM
- Paint: Deep Space by Behr
- Letterpress Print: Brittany S
- Chicago Print: Ork Posters
- Think-make-think: Clifton Burt
- Cast Aluminum Ampersand: House Industries
- Bedspread: Ikea
- Pillows: Urban Outfitters, Areaware, Ross Menuez
- Shelf: Ikea
- Bedside table: ikea DIY
- Dresser: Ikea
- Cord light & bulbs: West Elm
- White chair: CB2
- Side table: West Elm
- Hinged Mirror: Ikea
BRITTANY P'S BEDROOM
- Bedspread: ikea
- Shelf: ikea
- Cord light: west elm
- Edison bulb: home depot
- Artwork: Ashley Flora
Thanks, Brittany S. & Brittany P.!
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(Image credits: Brittany Purlee)