Lauren’s Antique Urban Fantasy Mix

published Feb 25, 2016
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(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Name: Lauren Pirie
Location: Bloorcourt — Toronto, Ontario
Size: 400 square feet
Years lived in: 6 months; Rented

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When I first entered Lauren’s apartment, I was immediately captivated by all of the art that covers the wall of the long corridor; Lauren’s work is truly enigmatic and delicate. The corridor then led me to the kitchen/living room/studio space. Great light was coming in from windows on both sides, and there were plants everywhere, wonderful art and plenty of unicorns! As Lauren’s friends tell her, the place has “got a really cool and cozy vibe.”

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Lauren has a great eye for combining old and new. The mix of pieces with sentimental value, family antiques (the chair and the mantel), DIY elements (the kitchen island), numerous plants, and inspiring artwork brings the place together. There is this urban fantasy jungle feel to it. I absolutely love the unicorns popping up here and there, the small decorative pieces brought from countless travels, and the creative use of different elements that brings fun to function, like the hay hooks used for pots and pans in the kitchen.

(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: Antique urban fantasy jungle.

Inspiration: Traveling, a unique antique find, local restaurants, the Internet.

Favorite Element: My Rajni Perera piece—it’s the first original piece I bought for myself, and I hope to own more of her work one day. Also, my mantel for aesthetic and sentimental value, my plants for making me happy, and my flat file for keeping me organized (or at least my prints and papers). I think my favorite thing about my place is the way the mix of elements brings it together.

Biggest Challenge: Not bringing home every interesting piece of furniture I find at an antique market or on the side of the road.

What Friends Say: Your place is very Lauren. It’s a jungle. You have a great eye for combining old and new. Best location. That it’s got a really cool and cozy vibe. Love the plants everywhere, the details and the layout and the art.

Biggest Embarrassment: My front hall is currently full of my own art, which feels a bit weird to me, but I guess it works since my aesthetic in my drawings isn’t far off from my aesthetic in my life and home.

Proudest DIY: My place is full of DIYs, but the kitchen island is probably the one that stands out the most. It’s made from a cart that a friend’s restaurant was getting rid of and a tabletop I found on the side of the road. A friend of mine helped me cut the tabletop to fit into the cart base.

Biggest Indulgence: Probably my Restoration Hardware linen sheets, and that’s kind of cheating since they were a gift. Almost every piece of furniture I own is a family antique, bought off Craigslist, found on the side of the road or a DIY. I will happily indulge in art or handmade pieces when I can—I’ve been lucky to do some trades with artist friends and purchase some great prints — but I haven’t quite gotten to the point of purchasing any large, original art pieces.

Best Advice: Buy prints from artists if you can’t afford originals. Plants add life to a space and they’re good for the soul. A blanket or a bowl that you pick up while traveling, and will use, is a better reminder of a trip than a fridge magnet and brings something extra to your home.

Dream Sources: Bodi & Fou, Easy Tiger, Dynasty Moroccan rugs (and plants, pots, etc)



(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)


  • Blanket: Mexico
  • Patterned throw pillows: HomeSense
  • Solid throw pillows: Indigo
  • Mantle: antique from family farmhouse
  • Unicorns: antique, vintage
  • Acorn pot: Japan
  • Pirate ship lamp: vintage received as a gift, with DIY paint job and shade
  • Flat file/desk: vintage via Craigslist/DIY
  • Hanging gold planter: Honest Ed’s
  • White planter with feet: Pigeon Toe Ceramics
  • Hanging black planter with gold chain: DIY
  • Map puzzles: garage sale for $1
  • Wooden/upholstered chair: family antique
  • Botanical print in corner: Kaye Blegvad
  • Pink and yellow painting: original Justin Broadbent
  • Lois: custom by Justin Broadbent


  • Credenza: vintage
  • Shelf on top: antique via the former Chief Salvage
  • Ceramic dish with feet: Rodrigo Marti
  • Clamp light: vintage via Rec + Art History
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)


  • Kitchen island: DIY
  • Lab stools: Craigslist, originally from University of Maine
  • Planter on island: The Local Potter
  • Fruit bowl: Sistering
  • Pendant lamps: IKEA
  • Pot hooks: antique hay hooks
  • Pots: Earthware
  • Ceramics on cart: family vintage, Sistering
(Image credit: Marie-Lyne Quirion)


  • Linen sheets: Restoration Hardware
  • Faux fur blanket: Indigo
  • Mexican blanket: Mexico
  • Throw pillow: HomeSense
  • Basket: Goodwill
  • Plant: Monstera
  • Dresser: Craigslist
  • Cabinet and type tray: antique
  • Shelves: DIY using found plaster board
  • Zines: Jenn Woodall, Juliana Neufeld, Laura Callaghan
  • Victorian couple vase: Danielle Hession
  • Skulls: Mexico
  • Totoro: Ghibli Museum in Tokyo
  • “Beauty” horse bank: Christie Antique Market
  • Original art on pillar wall: Rajni Perera


  • Mirror: IKEA
  • Lady print: Kaye Blagvad
  • Boy and wolf print: Juliana Swaney

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Thanks, Lauren!