Meg & Justin's Art, Plants & Friendly Vibes-Filled Apartment

Meg & Justin's Art, Plants & Friendly Vibes-Filled Apartment

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Name: Justin and Meg
Location: Toronto, Ontario
Size: 1,000 square feet
Years lived in: 2 years; Rented

When Justin and Meg walked into this house—after visiting about 60 houses and doing six months of research—they knew immediately it was the one. A lot of people wanted this place, and they had to basically beg the landlord daily until he finally gave in and let them have it. Their home has a good, friendly vibe, and it’s the perfect mix of Meg and Justin: art and plants everywhere.

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Everyone asks about the art and tries to guess which pieces Justin, a multidisciplinary artist, made. They also always ask how it stays so clean and how they keep the plants alive. "Justin keeps telling me we have enough plants, but I’ll sneak a new little guy in every month or so when he’s not looking," says Meg, an in-house Labour and Employment counsel.

Neighborhood was one of the most important factors for Meg and Justin when they were looking for a house, and this is the perfect spot: close to all of their favorite bars and restaurants and close to both Queen and Bloor. It also has a very neighborhood-y vibe, with plenty of trees, families, etc. The couple weren’t into anything too open-concept for their first home together, since they wanted to make sure they both had enough space. This layout is ideal because it’s two floors (the top two floors of the house), with multiple rooms, so they can both be at home but not in each other’s hair all the time.

Other necessities they were looking for in a house: hardwood floors, no neighbors above, lots of natural light, and outdoor space—this place had everything on their list! Even though the individual rooms are on the small side, it makes each room feel very cozy and inviting, and Meg and Justin love hanging out at home.

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style:

Justin: Art everywhere! I like found objects rejigged to look high-end. My friends have this inside joke where they quote me saying, “Look at this piece of wood I found!” I’m always picking things up off the side of the road.

Meg: Clean, bright, and minimal. I love wood floors and white walls (boring!). I mostly decorate with plants, flowers, and books. Justin keeps telling me we have enough plants, but I’ll sneak a new little guy in every month or so when he’s not looking.

Inspiration:

Justin: Value Village. I’ve found so many hidden treasures there over the years. Also scavenging for roadside antiques and discarded items in our neighborhood.

Meg: Gardens, libraries, my friends’ homes, and Instagram. I love @myinteriortips and @westelm.

Favorite Element:

Justin: The natural light we get in the morning, our deck which is the best spot for coffee, and the coziness of the whole place. I love the yellow pendant light we found at a vintage store on Queen West that’s in our office. We argue about how low it hangs—she’s always hitting her head on it, but I love the way it looks.

Meg: Our neighborhood, having lots of different rooms to hang out in, and living on the top two floors of a house. I was the downstairs neighbor once—never again. You can hear everything...terror. I also love our tiny back deck! It’s super private with a cute view, and perfect for small dinner parties (drinking parties) in the summer.

Biggest Challenge:

Justin: Learning to compromise on style. I don’t like the color-coded book shelves, but I got to choose all the art in our house. Also, not being messy, which Meg hates. I’m an artist so I’m naturally really messy, but luckily I found a studio right on the corner of our street about a month after we moved in, so I keep the mess there.

Meg: Not murdering each other when we first moved in. I lived alone before we moved in together, so it was hard to be like, wait, I can’t just do everything my way? Luckily, I really like Justin’s style so it wasn’t too hard. Another challenge is keeping all the plants happy. They all need different amounts of light and water on different schedules; it’s basically my full-time job outside of work.

What Friends Say:

Justin: People tell us the place has a good, friendly vibe, and that it’s the perfect mix of Meg and I. Everyone asks about the art and tries to guess which pieces I made. They also always ask how it stays so clean and how we keep the plants alive (Meg).

Meg: Our friends say our place is really inviting and cozy. Our house has a nickname—“The Stone Hotel” (we live on Stonehouse)— because we always have people staying with us in our spare bedroom. We’re always open!

Biggest Embarrassment: There is a family of super lazy and adorable raccoons that seem to think our deck is their summer home. They just lounge there, and look at us like, “Can I help you?” They aren’t even a little bit afraid of us.

Proudest DIY:

Meg: The white dresser in our bedroom. It used to be yellow and peeling—a friend and I found it at Value Village for $7!

Biggest Indulgence:

Justin: Our king-size bed. Never not king-size. We can both starfish every night, which is the dream.

Meg: Fresh cut flowers. We could probably afford to buy a house if I could kick that habit, but I can’t live without them.

Best Advice:

Justin: Fill your home with art.

Meg: Fill your home with plants.

Dream Sources:

Justin: Sotheby’s.

Meg: All the furniture stores I can’t afford, like Style Garage, Queen West Antiques, and Pavilion.

Resources

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

ENTRY

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

LIVING ROOM

  • Coffee table: vintage IKEA
  • Juno Award: Justin Broadbent for “Record Packaging Design”
  • Magazines: Destroy All Monsters, The Gentlewoman, Playboy, TAR
  • Most plants and pots: Dynasty
  • Art: Thrush Holmes
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

DINING ROOM

  • Table: reclaimed desktop with found iron leg
  • Black stools: Morba
  • Most plants and pots: Dynasty
  • Man With Squirrel: Davida Nemeroff
  • Heaven: Justin Broadbent
  • Painting of woman: Kathryn Macnaughton

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

KITCHEN

  • Most plants and pots: Dynasty
  • New York: Justin Broadbent
  • Barack Obama: Justin Broadbent
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

MASTER BEDROOM:

  • Bed: West Elm
  • White dresser: Value Village, repainted
  • Wood dresser: West Elm
  • Bedside table: West Elm
  • Duvet and pillows: West Elm
  • Most plants and pots: Dynasty
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

GUEST BEDROOM

  • Bed: West Elm
  • Dresser: West Elm
  • Bedside table: West Elm
  • Duvet and pillows: West Elm
  • Most plants and pots: Dynasty
  • Artwork: Justin Broadbent
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

BATHROOM

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

STAIRS

  • Most plants and pots: Dynasty
  • Artwork: Justin Broadbent

OFFICE/DEN

  • Yellow pendant lamp: vintage store on Queen West
  • Mustard yellow chair: Morba
  • Plants and pots: Dynasty
  • Holiday Meat: Justin Broadbent

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Thanks, Meg & Justin!

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