A 550-Square-Foot Brooklyn Rental Is Filled with Furniture That’s Been Given a Second Life

published Mar 1, 2023
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Sunset Brooklyn apartment with yellow blankets and rugs.
Credit: Kira McBride

Name: Kira McBride and two cats
Location: Sunset Park — Brooklyn, New York
Type of home: Apartment
Size: 550 square feet
Years lived in: 9 months, renting
Rent: $1690 per month

Credit: Kira McBride

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: My two-bedroom apartment was decorated with a lot of love and creativity. I filled my home with objects I made, and furniture I gave a second life to (i.e., with paint). I worked hard to create a curated environment with a lot of personality on a budget.

Credit: Kira McBride

My identity is reflected in the art that I create, as well as the art I collect. I surround myself with work made by friends, and my own ceramics. My palette is pretty light/pastel, as I don’t get any natural light — I want to create the illusion that there is a lot of light in the room. Every room is slightly color-coordinated and I bring certain colors into each room to create uniformity. Everyone who comes in my home says that every room accurately represents my personality.

Credit: Kira McBride

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or fewer: Warm, eclectic, DIY, artisanal.

Credit: Kira McBride

What is your favorite room and why? My favorite room is my living room — I spend the most time there. I keep my favorite pieces on display as well as my favorite plants. The cats also love it because I keep all their blankets on the couch. It’s warm and welcoming and the first thing you see when you come into my home.

Credit: Kira McBride

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? The last thing I found was a tiny, low-to-the-ground, corduroy armchair. I shampooed it and then sewed caps on the arms where there was fraying.

Credit: Kira McBride

Any advice for creating a home you love? Find furniture that isn’t overpowering and doesn’t crowd your space.

Paint your furniture! it will give pieces you wouldn’t normally look at a second life.

Credit: Kira McBride

Put your favorite colors in your home. I made an active effort to make pale pink and light turquoise a theme in every room.

Find pieces you think are fun. It’s important to have your home reflect your personality.

This submission’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.
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