Name: Sara Lov Musician
Location: Los Feliz, CA
Size: 500 sq. ft.
Years lived in: Two
Sara was big on setting up her place right when she moved in so she felt right at home--which I'm sure many AT readers identify with. The thing that impressed us most about Sara was her ability to envision the relaxing outdoor area (which we've included below as a "before" image). Taking the landscape from its former state and creating a second place where she can entertain friends and relax makes the apartment one to envy. She also brings to her apartment a bit of old world charm from Italy. Sara lived there for five years while she played music and toured Europe (yeah, we're a little jealous). While she couldn't fit much on the plane ride back, she mixes playful vintage lamps with friends' artwork that results in quite the charming space.
My style: A mix of 50's modern, vintage & some new.
Inspiration: California, a bit 50's, 60's & 70's, Outsider art, and comfort
Favorite Element: Color and the good lighting the apartment gets.
Biggest Challenge: The Garden! It wasn't really a garden when I moved in... just a big overgrown mess. My friend Dee Dee Burnett (Landscaper extraordinaire) helped me make it into a wonderful outdoor space for gatherings and meals. It's like having another giant room.What Friends Say: People tell me I have a knack for choosing great paint colors and that my place feels very inviting and comfortable. Also, people seem surprised at how quickly it all came together... maybe I'm a bit obsessive but it's hard for me to focus unless my environment is in order. I got all of it done in the first 2 months of living here.
Biggest Embarrassment: My couch. I absolutely love it BUT.... I got it at a thrift shop for $60 and it desperately needed new upholstery. I thought I would take that challenge on myself. It was my first re-upholstery of a couch and I did a terrible job. The couch is kind of wobbly but I am hoping to eventually have it redone properly.
Proudest DIY: Making my coffee table & tv/stereo cabinet. My dad always taught me that I could make anything I wanted to, I definitely always try. I am also quite proud of my paint job and the removal of awful verticle blinds on all the windows which I replaced with curtains that I made.
Biggest Indulgence: The outdoor patio/garden. Well worth it but it was definitely an indulgence. I had to hire help! But I really use that space so much, it was well worth the expense.
Best advice: First, I've learned to let go of things. It feels much better to be in a clutter free environment. I can think more clearly and it allows me to work and create in peace. It also leaves plenty of room for newness and change... And second, no matter how long I plan to live somewhere I've always taken the time to make it mine. I usually spend a couple months doing that when I first move in. It's amazing what some fresh paint can do. If I make it feel like me and a place that I can work and be creative in, I enjoy it so much more and it allows me to live in the moment instead of fantasizing about what I may get to have someday... I like to think I can have it now.
Dream source: I like architectural & design mags like Dwell, Wallpaper, Readymade & Domino. I also love the Anthropologie catalogues, they are full of beautiful ideas. Antique/thrift stores are always inspiring, and of course, I'm always inspired by good films.
Furniture: Dining table is from IKEA and dining chairs are from American Chairs. Coffee table and TV table are DIY and couch is vintage. Small chair in living room was a gift from a friend, bought vintage in NYC. Desk and bed frame are also IKEA.
Accessories: Pillows on bed are IKEA (Italy). "The Poop Pillow" on couch made by Scott McPherson. Quilt on bed from Home a la Mode. Hats displayed on bedroom shelf are by Francesca Montanari of Ratmusque.
Lighting: Lighting in kitchen & dining room are from IKEA. Lamp in living room is vintage, shade is from Anthropologie (bought on sale for $19.99!). Bedside table lamps are from my place I lived in Italy. They are vintage & I recovered the shades. Lamp on dresser from Berlin, bought at a swap meet for 20 Euros.Artwork: Saelee Oh did the print of the turquoise & blue horse right near my desk & also the 2 prints above my bed. The art above the dining table is by Seonna Hong. Several pieces of art in the salon style grouping above the couch are also by Scott McPherson.
Paint: All paint is Benjamin Moore from Jill's Hardware in Atwater Village (the best and friendliest service). Living room walls are China White, kitchen is Gold Leaf, (can't find the trim color?!), bedroom paint is a beautiful custom green they matched for me, and bathroom is 099.