This Charleston Condo in an 1840-Era Building Has Envy-Inducing Exposed Brick
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Name: Alexander Donovan; wife, Jesse; and dog, Teddy
Location: Downtown Charleston, South Carolina
Type of home: Condo
Size: 913 square feet
Years lived in: 1.5 years, owned
Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: Jessie (wife), Zan (husband), and Teddy (our Yorkie Poodle). Zan grew up in Minnesota but visited family in Charleston every summer. We currently live in Brooklyn, New York (where we rent), and during the pandemic, we were looking for a New York escape but didn’t want to follow the trend of many other New Yorkers and buy upstate in the Hudson Valley. Instead we looked south to Charleston where we could get warmer weather, a fun city to visit for food and drink, and easy direct flights from NYC. This apartment is a vacation apartment and we often rent it while we’re not there. When we drive down we bring our dog, Teddy.
We both prefer buildings and spaces with history. We’ve been in NYC for over a decade and always avoided the luxury buildings, preferring brownstones and buildings with more historical character. So when we were looking in Charleston we prioritized spaces in old, classic Charleston homes. Our building was built in 1840.
We have somewhat different styles. Zan prefers more color and modern looks and Jessie very much prefers more classic and ornate looks with basic colors. We made a lot of comprises across our styles in this apartment. Zan’s preference for modern won out in the kitchen, which we gutted and remodeled; Jessie won in the bedroom with a more classic dresser and bed.
One area we both agree is that we really like clean, non-cluttered spaces, so we designed with that in mind.
Describe your home’s style in 5 words or fewer: Eclectic interiors in classic space.
What is your favorite room and why? The living room. It’s the center of the apartment, connecting the entry, bedroom, and kitchen. We love the classic brick fireplace, the balance of old antiques and modern pieces, the built-in bookshelf, the funky thrift chandelier, and the beautiful Charleston sunsets from the huge original wavy-glass windows.
What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? We just replaced our couch in the living room with a gray Blu Dot couch.
Any advice for creating a home you love? Don’t feel pressure to find and order every piece immediately. Sometimes time is needed to let the perfect piece present itself. We sometimes felt pressure to make decisions quickly so we could get the job done, but when the piece or decision didn’t feel quite right or wasn’t perfect we chose to step back and just waited, and we were always happy we did: We eventually would find the perfect piece at an antique shop or in a well-targeted Instagram ad.
This submission’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.
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