What initially drew us to this apartment was the neighborhood—a great, swanky part of St. Paul filled with gorgeous old homes and within easy walking distance to lots of small businesses and restaurants. What sold us on the apartment was the kitchen. The kitchen is amazingly spacious for a smaller (and older) apartment. My fiance and I also love the details that come with older buildings: the hardwood floors and heavy moldings. They're a great base for our fairly eclectic style. Combining households was an interesting process (I'm all for color, he likes beige), but I think we managed to pull it together in a way that reflects both of our rather geeky personalities (he's a music nerd, I'm an all-around geek, and we both love art) and still be chic.
Biggest Challenge of Living in a Small Space:
Storage! I know we're on the big side for Small Cool, but old home = few, small closets. Even that wouldn't be so bad except we both have hobbies that take up a fair amount of space. He has 3 guitars, a viola, and a full-sized keyboard that need to be accessible, and I'm an artsy sort who makes jewelry and sews, so I need to find space for all my craft supplies. The result is I have my closets in the living room (the biggest closet in the apartment, but still quite small by today's standards) and our study to house our hodge-podge of hobbies. We built a desk for both of us and the tiny closest is stacked with carefully labeled boxes of fabrics and supplies. We also decided to shove all the furniture against the walls. It may not be terribly innovative, but he gets to keep his keyboard, I get to keep my vintage sofa, and the room doesn't feel claustrophobic. It is, however, still a work in progress.
If I am the Grand Prize winner of Small Cool, the item(s) or project(s) from my home design wishlist that I'd like to spend my winnings on are::
I've been dying to replace our couch! It's a little chunky for the space and very, well, beige . My decor wishlist also includes a side table for the living room chair and new lighting for the study and bedroom (currently dorm-esque floor lamps).