A Dutch Apartment That Will Fill You With Wanderlust

A Dutch Apartment That Will Fill You With Wanderlust

Morgan Schemel
May 5, 2017

Name: Margot and Luc
Location: Utrecht, Netherlands
Size: 538 square feet
Years lived in: 2 years (I moved in with Luc a year ago, he has lived here for 2 years)

Margot and Luc's travel-inspired apartment will fill you with wanderlust the second you step through the door! The couple shares a passion for travel, and they've spent the last few years acquiring their incredible collection of art and artifacts from all over the world — most recently Ethiopia (where they picked up the beautiful scale in the hallway). As a photographer, Margot has a great eye for pattern and composition. Her design aesthetic reflects her photography work, a collection of which is hanging near the kitchen.

Margot and Luc met while studying at university. Their majors, art history and social geography, couldn't have been more complementary of one another. They spent years working and living just a stone's throw from one another and last year, they decided to move in together. The "merging of stuff" is always a difficult challenge in a relationship, but Margot and Luc have similar design taste and found the transition fairly easy. Margot's biggest complaint was that Luc once used her hand-dyed tea towel to wipe down the counter. His argument is that towels should be practical — a very Dutch response!

The couple's light-filled apartment is very "gezelling" (the Dutch say there is no literal translation to this word, but it roughly means "cozy.") At 538 square feet, only the most indispensable decor is added to the apartment. To save space, their dining table functions as both a place to eat and a place to work. They move the computer when guests come over and the space is transformed!

The couple doesn't have definite plans for a move, but Margot recently brought back a copper sink from Marrakesh that she has stored away in the closet until they have a place to put it. We're excited to check back in on them in a few years to see where it goes!

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Scandinavian with eclectic elements. We like to take home quirky items from our travel adventures, like from Morocco, Uzbekistan, Iran, Ethiopia and India.

It's actually a mixture of the both of us. Luc is really into clean, Scandinavian style and a fresh color palette. If it were up to me, we would live in a 15th century Kunst und Wunderkammer (scientist room) with so many details, things to look at and probably a planetarium.

Inspiration: Travelling, art and Pinterest.

Favorite Element: The table. It's where people gather when we have guests over. A lot of good conversations and great evenings started at that table.

Biggest Challenge: This apartment is rented and we can't drill too much in the walls (I would love to have a gallery wall!) and because the apartment is really new, I find it difficult to make it cozy and authentic without trying too hard.

What Friends Say: Great! It feels cozy, warm and so grown up!

Biggest Embarrassment: Our laundry room; it's a huge mess with the cat's toys.

Proudest DIY: I found a huge broken Moroccan fruit bowl in the trash on the streets of Amsterdam. I took it home and glued it back together.

Biggest Indulgence: Our original Charles and Ray Eames chairs and the coffee machine (I really can't live without good coffee).

Best Advice: Don't try to match everything. It just needs to feel good. Don't worry about it too much. Sometimes things need to clash. It will be much more difficult when you have to work with just one or two color accents that you can change "easily" every now and then. You will end up never being fully satisfied. Try to be bold and make some statements.

Dream Sources: Anthropologie, why don't we have it in the Netherlands?!


Histor – Spar (silver-fir) in the Bedroom

Adjusted Billy Bookcase (with trim) - Ikea
Weighing scale – bought in Ethiopia
Hallway table – thrifted
Print – Pablo Tomek
Rug - Gift

Torino Sofa — Wehkamp
Moroccan Style Cushion — Xenos
Blue Kelim Pillow (not sure if it's in the picture) – Sissy Boy
Cat lamp – Studio Eno
Leather Chair – Thrifted
Kelim Carpet – Gift from Luc's mom
Closet – It's Cambodian and Fatima's hand is from Morocco
Fruit bowl – my proudest DIY!, thrifted
Hektar lamp - Ikea
Photos – my own (Ethiopia and Iran)

Table- Designed by Luc!
Chairs- Charles and Ray Eames by Vitra
Wooden cutting boards – Sissy boy and tafelboom
Coffee machine – Ascaso Duo
French Press – Bodum
Trash can – Simple Human
Mortar & Pestel - Ikea
Soap dispenser – Zara Home

Malm bed – Ikea
Print – Kees van Dongen
1850s brown wardrobe – thrift shop
White wardrobe – gift from Lucs father
Cow hide – Thrift shop
Ofelia throw – Ikea
Chair – Replica Charles & Ray Eames
Tropical Pillow – Xenos
Mirror – Thrifted (I think someone left in my old college dorm room)
Cloud lamp – Ikea
Leather bag (on top of my wardrobe) - Tunisia

Thanks, Margot and Luc!

Apartment Therapy supports our readers with carefully chosen product recommendations to improve life at home. You support us through our independently chosen links, many of which earn us a commission.
moving--truck moving--dates moving--dolly moving--house moving--cal Created with Sketch. moving--apt