We finally had a chance to see my friend Eleni's NYC apartment for the first time last week. As I mentioned in my first Design Diary post, she had to make a rental decision on this 5th floor walk-up apartment on the Upper East Side without ever seeing it in person. Needless to say, we were a bit apprehensive about what we might find...
First, the good news:
- The entry, hallways and stairs are clean, fairly wide (for moving in) and have great visibility (for safety).
- There is a nicely maintained laundry room on the second floor.
- The 5th floor is the top floor of the building, so there won't be anyone causing an annoyance from above.
- The apartment has windows in every room and gets a lot of light.
- The entire apartment has been freshly repainted white — actual white — not typical, low-budget beige. (We are beyond thrilled, as we were prepared to repaint the entire apartment prior to move-in!)
- The kitchen has a good amount of cabinet space.
- The bathroom is of decent size (or at least bigger than the one in Eleni's Boston apartment).
- There are two closets, both with overhead storage.
- The neighborhood is fantastic!
Then, the not-so-good news:
- The apartment is 323 square feet (and approximately 23 square feet smaller than Eleni's Boston apartment).
- Windows in both the bedroom and the kitchen face a brick wall.
- The counter space in the kitchen is minimal.
- The stove is old, electric, and has seen better days.
- The entire apartment desperately needs to be cleaned. Major trouble areas are the kitchen, the bathroom, and the ceiling fans.
- The blinds in all rooms are most likely beyond repair or cleaning, and will need to be replaced.
Since the visit, there has been much debate about sofas, sleepers, and sectionals. We've eliminated options based on comfort and size, and are getting close to making a decision. Delivery time is a factor, as it looks like Eleni's current sofa (an Ektorp loveseat) won't fit through the door of her new apartment (and with the stress of starting a new job, we don't want her to have to go long without something comfortable to sit on).
Most of Eleni's furnishings in Boston are hold-overs from her time as a medical student that she'd like to replace with better quality pieces. However, budget is definitely a factor, so this process will most likely happen over time. Therefore, my goal in space planning is to create a layout utilizing most of her existing pieces, while also providing ideas and direction for future purchases.
Next up? This weekend, a team of us will also start deep-cleaning the apartment in preparation for the move. We'll install shelf paper in the kitchen, and paint and assemble the new étagère entertainment unit. We'll then continue up to Boston to help Eleni pack, and Tuesday...the move!
Previous Design Diary posts:
(Images: Bethany Seawright)