Marian & Sig's Retro Modern Ukrainian Village Apartment

Marian & Sig's Retro Modern Ukrainian Village Apartment

Jason Loper
May 19, 2011

Name: Marian Williams & Sig Froelich + Jean-Luc the dog
Location: Ukrainian Village — Chicago, Illinois
Size: 1,400 square feet
Years lived in: 2 — rented

What happens when an architect and a graphic designer move into a quirky vintage apartment? If they're Marian Williams and Sig Froelich, they turn that quirky apartment into a gorgeous, stylish, and totally swoon worthy home!

We got a sneak peak at this stylish pad when Marian submitted her information for a house call back in March. The few photos we saw then were just enough to whet our appetite for more. And boy are we glad we followed up for a full house tour!

Marian and Sig's apartment is your standard issue, quirky old Chicago unit. While it has its share of gorgeous features — the beams in the living room and the built-ins in the kitchen — it also has a few quirks going for it — like the mismatched tile in the bathroom and the little guest room/sleeping cubby off of the living room. Under anyone else's hands, this apartment could have become a messy hodge podge of styles. Under Marian and Sig's hands, however, it is an absolute stunner!

From the gorgeous, colorful art (both original and found/reclaimed pieces) to the gorgeous mix of modern and antique furnishings, Marian and Sig imprinted their enviable style on this vintage apartment.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

Our Style: Whimsical, retro modern, casual

Inspiration: Mid century modern graphic art and all things classified as classic.

Favorite Element: The two posters in the dining room. My friend Scott gave me those pictures. The artwork was found about 15 years ago in the attic of a dusty surplus beauty shop fixtures store somewhere on south Wabash. They were created for some sort of commercial use.

Biggest Challenge: Lighting. The apartment was very dark. By installing track lighting in almost every room, we were able to get away with a more interesting color palette on the walls without making the issue worse.

What Friends Say: I can't believe what you guys did with this space! Our pals attribute its success to having two designers on the case (Sig's an architect and I am a graphic designer.)

Biggest Embarrassment: The back porch is currently more of a storage area than a room. We will begin fixing it up this summer.

Proudest DIY: The kitchen and small guest room off of the living room were without baseboard. Sig went to home depot, purchased the baseboard, and installed it himself using the upstairs neighbors' miter saw.

Biggest Indulgence: In an apartment where everything is purchased on sale, I actually paid full price for the Crate and Barrel Petrie apartment sofa and ottoman.

Best Advice: When considering painting a room, make sure to study your paint chips for a long time. Treat each wall of a room as a complete composition - furniture, artwork and accessories (lamps, books, plants and decorative elements).

Dream Sources: Sales, garage sales, clearance sales, factory outlet sales

Resources of Note:


    • Master bedroom: Behr: Lime Light
    • Office: Behr: Ocean Kiss
    • Dining room: Ralph Lauren: Warwick Lodge
    • Living Room: Ralph Lauren: Mombasa Mist
    • Hall: Behr: Indulgent



    • Man and Woman prints: Unknown beauty shop attic
    • Dining Table: Crate and Barrel
    • Faux Louis the XIV Sideboard: White Elephant Resale Shop
    • Low console: CB2
    • Chair: CB2
    • Pink and Orange Poofs: CB2
    • Dining Room Chairs: IKEA
    • Type poster: Hatch Show Print. Nashville, TN
    • Air Plants: Sprout Home


    • Kitchen Island: IKEA
    • Coffee Stand : IKEA
    • Print: Marian Williams


    • All furniture from IKEA


    • Pillows: West Elm
    • Photograph: Unknown artist, Purchased at resale shop
    • Lamps: IKEA
    • Small lamp pedestals: CB2
    • Curtain: IKEA


    • Miscellanous IKEA furniture
    • Bookshelf: Nadeau
    • Collage Print: Marian Williams
    • Boy with Halo: Marian Williams
    • Multicolor circular print: Chicago artist, Ryan Scheidt

Thanks, Marian and Sig!

Images: Jason Loper

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