Name: Tim and Ren
Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
Size: 1076 square feet
Years lived in: Renting 2 years
When you enter Ren and Tim's light-filled Amsterdam apartment, you can physically feel yourself relax as the hustle and bustle of city life is shed at the door. Part Nordic, part mid-century, their apartment boasts clean, simple lines and minimalist aesthetics. The couple combines traditional contemporary furniture with Ren's original artwork for a space that looks beautiful without feeling over-styled.
When the couple moved into their apartment two years ago, the floors were barely installed and the balcony material was stacked in the kitchen. This came as quite the shock since they had previously rented furnished apartments and weren't prepared to design from scratch. Thanks to their relaxed attitude and a very practical approach, the transition was much easier than expected.
That attitude also served them well while acclimating to the Netherlands from the U.K. and the U.S. They emphasize that their style is constantly evolving, so it's no surprise that they are already planning their next move. Can't wait to check back in on them and see what new spaces they create...
Apartment Therapy Survey:
Our Style: Part Nordic, part mid-century, with minimal execution. The apartment is always evolving with us as we learn more about design and find new treasures. Nothing in the apartment is static and everything is up for change.
Inspiration: Our ideas come from a whole host of places; either through trawling Instagram vintage furniture and stylized Nordic accounts or shopping local thrift stores and reading the likes of Kinfolk and Cereal.
Favorite Element: We're spoiled with the amount of natural light this apartment gets, and with a balcony on every room we get to chase the sun throughout the day.
Biggest Challenge: We've always rented fully furnished apartments, so it was a first for us to rent a place that only came with a floor and the kitchen; everything else had to be installed by us, like light fittings and curtains. We became good at DIY! It was also our first time buying big ticket furniture.
What Friends Say: Our friends are amazed by how much effort we put into the apartment and sometimes ask for help with their own places. We've got a list of friends who want to take over renting if we ever leave.
Biggest Embarrassment: We love to cook and host, but we have a typical Dutch oven/microwave. For Christmas Day we had to use our friend's local restaurant to cook the turkey!
Proudest DIY: The artwork we've created in the living room and bedroom. Ren is the artist of this home.
Biggest Indulgence: Our Kay Bojesen Monkey. It's pretty extravagant for what it is, but it's something Tim has always wanted, and it's a timeless classic.
Best Advice: When moving into a new home, don't rush to fill it with new furniture, lights, accessories etc. Live in the empty space for a few weeks before you do anything or buy anything; and when it's time to buy, do so one piece at a time. Over the last two years our apartment has changed quite a lot, things became more refined, our styles changed, and a lot of that was down to how we moved and interacted with the space, and how the atmosphere of the apartment felt throughout the day.
Always keep your choices considered. We live by the rule; if it doesn't serve a purpose (design or functional) it's out.
Dream Sources: More of a dream piece: A 1950s teak Oswald Vermaercke Paola lowboard.
Sofa and Arm Chair - Dot Shop
Rug - IKEA
Hanging lights – Fabricati (Amsterdam)
Coffee table – Hip Wonen (Amsterdam)
TV and side table – Ari Antiques (Amsterdam)
Art work - Ren Phillips
Plants – Moomba Urban Gardens