Shelby's Sophisticated Studio Loft

House Tour

Name: Shelby Girard
Location: Gold Coast — Chicago, Illinois
Size: 375 square feet studio
Years lived in: 10 months, rented

When one lives in 375 square feet, every inch matters. What I love about Shelby's home is that despite her space limitations, she doesn't shy away from decoration. Artwork, textiles, collectibles and photos are thoughtfully chosen and carefully placed around her home, surrounding her daily life with memories and inspiration.

Upon entering Shelby's apartment I was immediately struck with how open and inviting 375 square feet can feel, so it's no surprise to learn that she is pursuing her Master's degree in Interior Design. Treating her own home as she would that of a client, Shelby has succeeded in showcasing the best of this apartment. Storage can be an issue with a small space such as this, but Shelby remains playful in her approach. Her highest heels are on display in the living room and books and artwork are on view throughout the apartment in a carefully edited manner. This lofty studio has great bones, but Shelby's keen eye and thoughtful planning have elevated the texture of this already charming space to that of a well-lived home.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: I call it eclectic since there is a mix of patterns and styles, old and new, mid-century furniture, thrift store finds, hand-me-downs, antiques and newer items from more mainstream furniture stores.

Inspiration: Graphic textiles, artist lofts, travel images, cities, homes, and hotels I want to visit.

Favorite Element: The high ceiling and loft.

Biggest Challenge: Limited space.

What Friends Say: That it is very "me," that it feels bigger than it is, and people always ask if the drawers above my bed are real which I find funny because why would they be fake?

Biggest Embarrassment: The amount of stuff I've managed to shove into every drawer, closet, and any other concealed space you can find.

Proudest DIY: I partake in DIYing very lightly which consists of painting, gold-leafing, and cutting up fabric when I get bored. I have my parents to thank for staining, painting, and reupholstering a lot of my furniture throughout the years.

Biggest Indulgence: The location.

Best Advice: Mix it up, don't try too hard to match, and water the plants!

Dream Sources: 1st Dibs, Madeline Weinrib, Jayson Home and Garden.

Resources of Note:

Living Room

    • Sofa - Room & Board
    • Pillows - West elm and Ikea
    • Chair - The ARK thrift shop (Chicago)
    • Rug - eBay
    • Coffee tables - TFA (St. Louis)
    • Dresser and tv chest - family hand-me-downs with Anthropologie and Ikea hardware
    • Side table - The Miriam Foundation (St. Louis)
    • Lamps: Ikea and Post 27
    • Mirror - Treasure Aisles antique mall (St. Louis)
    • Curtain- Anthropologie table linen

Dining Room

    • Table - Ikea
    • Chairs - St. Vincent De Paul (St. Louis)
    • Shelving unit - Cb2
    • Mirror - Treasure Aisles antique mall (St. Louis)
    • Lamp - Marshall's

Bedroom Loft

    • Duvet - West Elm
    • Pillows- Target
    • Dresser- family hand-me-down with Ikea hardware

Thanks, Shelby!

Images: Smith Schwartz

• HOUSE TOUR ARCHIVE Check out past house tours here
• Interested in sharing your home with Apartment Therapy? Contact the editors through our House Tour Submission Form.
• Are you a designer/architect/decorator interested in sharing a residential project with Apartment Therapy readers? Contact the editors through our Professional Submission Form.