Sarah’s Crisp and Clever Small Space in Chicago

published Feb 27, 2015
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(Image credit: Submitted by Sarah Stachelski)

Name: Sarah
Location: Lakeview – Chicago, IL

After graduating from the University of Michigan with a B.F.A. in Art & Design, I risked a move to the bustling city of Chicago to begin my pursuit towards a career in fashion. I only planned on staying a few short years, but, five years on, I’m still a happy resident of the ever chic and fashion-forward Windy City.

(Image credit: Submitted by Sarah Stachelski)

Starting off as a new graduate, I supplemented my income by waiting tables to maintain my original 282 square foot efficiency. But after putting in some grueling hours and networking like mad, I received an amazing job offer as a Showroom Manager for a bridal designer. This allowed me to upgrade my space to a smart and tidy 383 square foot apartment in Lakeview where I currently reside.

(Image credit: Submitted by Sarah Stachelski)

Making good use of a small space is a challenge, and I consider it my job to unlock the potential of any living space. Luckily, some of my favorite childhood memories are shopping trips and various home decoration projects with my parents. Every excursion was a chance to repaint my room or build a new storage unit with my dad. And while over the years I may have had to sometimes compromise style and living habits, I’ve always made sure my own room was a carefully curated, intimate place to reflect. This attraction to small, intimate spaces is the inspiration for my living unit today.

(Image credit: Submitted by Sarah Stachelski)

Like many Chicagoans, I love clean, modern, minimalistic designs with pops of color and vintage, rustic-chic accents. I’m not afraid to mix “high and low” pieces: my dining nook combines Ikea shelving, a CB2 table, and antique chairs from a local boutique. I enjoy the challenge of maximizing and decorating a small space, which has brought on a lot of DIY projects.

(Image credit: Submitted by Sarah Stachelski)

My living space and everything in it reflect my life experiences. Look on the back of my bathroom sink and you’ll find a line of plastic cowboys and Indian figurines acquired from a gas station in Wyoming while on an epic road trip with my brother. Sit on my bed and you’ll find a quilt stitched by my great-great aunt from the early 1900s. And placed in my dressing hall you’ll notice my grandfather’s tool chest, repurposed as a jewelry box, representing my family’s long line of milliners, carpenters, musicians, and entrepreneurs. With every square foot a reflection of the challenges, successes, and history of my life and my family, I am reminded every day to continue to evolve as a person.

Thanks, Sarah!

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