A Small and Soothing San Francisco Rental Has Ultimate Nancy Myers Movie Vibes

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Credit: Joyce P

Name: Joyce
Location: Inner Sunset — San Francisco, California
Type of home: Apartment
Size: 700 square feet
Years lived in: 2.5 years, renting

Credit: Joyce P

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: A couple of years ago, I decided I was ready to move to my own apartment. For the four years prior, I’d lived in Hayes Valley with a roommate, in a small-ish apartment and had a wonderful experience — the neighborhood was vibrant, hip, and central enough that getting anywhere else in SF was really easy. However, I was craving more space, peace, and quiet, and easier access to nature, so I started evaluating other potential neighborhood options. I realized the Inner Sunset was a perfect fit for me: blocks away from Golden Gate Park, the DeYoung Museum, and the ocean. It also had a more residential and quaint feel to it, which I prefer. After a very long search, I found an apartment in the area that met all my criteria, and I grabbed it immediately. The main selling points were the huge windows and the natural light, which are still my favorite features. I currently live by myself, and love it — I’ve been soaking up every minute of this sun-filled beauty. I’ve felt especially lucky to live here during the pandemic, as the apartment is large and comfortable, and the perfect haven to work from home.

Credit: Joyce P

I love art, frequent art museums and exhibits, and dabble in painting and surface pattern design. That being the case, you’d think I’d fill the apartment with artwork or have some bold or interesting prints on pillows and wallpaper. But that’s actually not the case — and it was a conscious design choice. Because there’s so much on my mind at any given time, I wanted to create a home that felt equal parts like a warm hug and a peaceful retreat, so the overall decor vibe is purposely minimalistic, earthy, and neutral. It helps me stay calm and centered, and provides the space to both create things and relax.

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: A mix of Nancy Myers’ style in “Something’s Gotta Give” and “Home Again”: Equal parts airy, light, warm, and cozy.

Credit: Joyce P

What is your favorite room and why? The living/dining/studio room — when the light pours in through the window in the afternoon, it feels like the entire apartment is blanketed in a special kind of magic. It’s also where I spend the most time — I work, paint, and read there.

Credit: Joyce P
Bedroom Reading Nook

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? Flowers from my neighborhood’s farmers market! I always think that flowers are what make a house a home, so I try to make sure to always have some fresh blooms throughout. On a typical Sunday morning, I’ll wake up a little early and walk over to the market to pick up fresh vegetables, fruits, and flowers for the week. The vendors are friendly, the stands so colorful, and everyone in the neighborhood comes out to say hi and do their grocery shopping. It reminds me why I love living in California.

Credit: Joyce P

Any advice for creating a home you love? Yes! Ask yourself “how do I want to feel in this space?” This can help narrow down things like wall colors, types of furniture, and accessories much more quickly. In my case, I knew I wanted to feel relaxed, calm, and cozy, which meant opting for light colors, minimal accessories/decor, and choosing furniture with simple lines.

Credit: Joyce P
Studio Area

This submission’s responses and photos were edited for length/size and clarity.