In Hell’s Kitchen in New York City, where space is seriously limited, I feel like I’ve been able to create a little oasis that feels light and welcoming. Since I’m young, I don’t have a ton of disposable income to spend on decorating and furnishing my apartment. Because of that, I was able to take time and make just about everything I needed for way less money. From the frames and art on the walls and my breakfast table, to the over-dyed rug and duvet cover, I have made basically everything I could to stay on a budget. It feels great to live in a place I created.
I love the strong connection my house has to the natural world and the seasons. The interior surfaces of fir, pine, and cedar create a sanctuary of calm that smells divine. In every direction there are windows facing out to the trees and sky. Sunlight plays upon the interior with an ever-changing show of warm glows and shadow. As I lay in bed I see the birds swooping past the skylights in the morning hours and the stars twinkling at night. I can hear the rain, the wind, the twittering birds and the hooting owls, the coyote on the ridge, and the frogs in the swamp, all from the comfort of my dry, cozy vantage point.
My favorite part about my home is that I am always entertained by it! I love designing and DIY-ing bit by bit, and get great satisfaction from making my space come together. I also love the large windows. They fill the apartment with beautiful natural light every day.
I love that it’s comfortable. To me, comfort is the ultimate goal of home decorating, and one I was worried I wouldn’t be able to achieve when I bought my small apartment – Will I feel cramped? Will I be bumping into things all the time? Will I have to store stuff in weird and hard to reach spots? A small scale turned out to be an asset. I had the time, money (and willpower!) to design it, ensuring minimal bumping and non-weird storage solutions. And I am now able to easily maintain it, and enjoy the comfort of the space to its fullest.
Most of all, I love that I was able to design and build this tiny house myself, to meet my exact needs. I love that it symbolizes the reclaiming of the home ownership process and brings the structure of the home back to human scale. I love that it was affordable and keeps me rent and debt free. I love the light streaming in from 10 windows and an all glass door. I love the beauty and comfort of wood and other sustainably sourced materials.
My home is warm, comfortable, and has a lot of character. Most of the things in it were sourced from weekend flea markets, garage sales, estate auctions, and thrift shops and came with their little imperfections. Put together in my cookie-cutter space, however, the scratch, the missing part, or the slight tear in the furniture or decor all recede and a cohesive look emerges. Each item in apartment has a story to tell which makes for a great conversation piece whenever guests are around.
When moving to California from NYC five years ago I took almost nothing except myself, my clothes and my surfboards. As soon as I stepped into this space, nestled on an iconic Venice walk street I knew it had considerable potential. Even with zero furniture it was already aesthetically pleasing with its structured, sun filled rooms, inviting ceramic flooring, plus the ocean air. I was hooked.
What I love most is the fact I started from scratch and year after year built upon the last. Each piece of furniture, every framed item of artwork, and its unique beach-chic style tells the story of a particular moment, country traveled to.. even a certain decor choice. All reflecting my personal interpretation of west coast living. I am proud to call it home and am mad about the energizing feeling it gives off every day.
The classic San Francisco details like the phone in the entryway, the molding, the penny tiles in the bathroom—so indicative of the time period this apartment was built in. I also love that I have so much light from the two bay windows. It makes the space very cheerful and bright and seem bigger than it is.
It's cozy and even if you live there by yourself, you never feel lost or lonely. The wooden beams give the apartment a warm and homely atmosphere and the used wooden furniture I found in second hand shops around Zurich adds to this feeling.