A TV-Free, 600-Square-Foot Shared Chicago Apartment Fosters Creativity

A TV-Free, 600-Square-Foot Shared Chicago Apartment Fosters Creativity

Me working on my flowers on paper art release in my art studio within our apartment.
(Image credit: Mae Stier)

Name: Katherine Corden and her fiancé Dave
Location: Lincoln Park Neighborhood — Chicago, Illinois
Size: 600 square feet
Years lived in: 1 year, renting

Dave and I moved in together about one year ago, around the same time we got engaged. We both are physical therapists full time but when we're not working, we are pursuing our creative passions! Dave loves playing guitar and learning new music, and I am working to grow my fine art business. When creating this home together we wanted it to aesthetically represent us, but more importantly we wanted it to encourage us to embrace our true selves while supporting our relationship. By integrating both our passions throughout the apartment (his music and my art), those creative outlets are always front of mind. We also intentionally chose not to put a television in our apartment, a decision that has made a big difference in how we spend our time together.

(Image credit: Mae Stier)

Describe your home's style in 5 words or less: Eclectic, artistic, and full of love.

Our favorite place to crash after a long day.
(Image credit: Mae Stier)

I love our living room space. It's definitely the most used area of our apartment. Our space is small but we love having friends over. It's deceiving, but with some quick furniture rearranging we can seat eight people in here at a moment's notice.

I love that our apartment is home to both of our passions: his music and my art.
(Image credit: Mae Stier)

We recently purchased the love seat in our living room by Interior Define. It's the Caitlin chair that my friends from The Everygirl designed! The fabric is velvet in the Narwhal color. We love it because when you remove the side pillows, Dave and I can fit perfectly in here together. It's the ideal spot to cozy up. It's also my meditation chair (when I remember to make the time for it). I'll light a candle and throw a blanket over my lap. Something about the velvet is just so soothing to me!

The breakfast, lunch and dinner nook.
(Image credit: Mae Stier)

Any advice for creating a home you love? Take your time! Especially in today's world of social media, there's an uncomfortable pressure to showcase a perfectly curated home. If you furnish your entire home while online shopping, you may end up getting bored of it or regretting an impulse purchase.

We took advantage of our high ceilings and made our own picture shelves for my art.
(Image credit: Mae Stier)

Wait to find something that speaks to you. Enjoy the process. Mosey around galleries and antique shops when you're on vacation. Showcase an inherited piece from a relative. Support an artist or business you know and trust. My favorite pieces in our apartment have a memory or feeling behind them. I think having a well cared for home that carries life and meaning has an extremely positive effect on our mental health.

One of my favorite nooks in our tiny kitchen.
(Image credit: Mae Stier)

We live our lives in these spaces! A home with positive energy will give you positive energy, whether you notice it or not.

Thanks, Katherine Corden!

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*This submissions responses have been edited for length and clarity.

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