Emily's Double-Duty Downsize

Emily's Double-Duty Downsize

Aaron Able
Jul 22, 2010

Name: Emily
Location: Fort Greene — Brooklyn, New York

When I moved to NYC from Boston, I downsized from a 1,200 square foot, two bedroom, condo with a full-sized dining room, large kitchen, two porches and a garden … to a 450 square foot, one-bedroom rental in Brooklyn. I spent years collecting art, antiques and furniture to furnish my condo and had inherited some amazing items that I really didn't want to lose.

When I moved to Brooklyn, I really wanted to live in a Brownstone but once I started looking, I couldn't stand the small, dark rooms. I found this apartment in a 12-unit brick building on a fairly quiet corner in Fort Greene. I love the high ceilings and big windows of my tiny Brooklyn apartment, but it definitely has its challenges. I had to create a living and dining area in one room and fit my bedroom into a tiny space — which means my furniture has to do double duty. My dining room table serves as a desk and my dresser is also my TV stand. I didn't want to have to put stuff in storage so I purchased a huge cabinet to house all of the stuff I didn't have room for. I chose a tall, white, simple IKEA cabinet so it would look like it was built-in. All of my furniture (except for my couch and the IKEA storage) and most of my housewares are antique. And my art all comes from family and friends.

I am blessed to have had an amazingly talented and wacky Grandmother whose artwork and collections have graced our homes since I was a child. The paintings in my living room and bedroom are hers and I inherited her German teacup collection and some of the artwork she had collected from friends. Since I was a kid, thanks to my grandmother and father, I have loved flea markets and frequent them in New York and in my travels around the world. My taste tends toward Mid-Century Modern but I also love Western and Native-American influenced art and textiles. I have tried to create a space that is eclectic, comfortable and surprising.

I share my apartment with my 12-year-old rescue Chihuahua, Stella.

Thanks Emily!

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