A Social Worker’s Small Chicago Home Doesn’t Shy Away from a Gallery Wall

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A weaving made by my talented mother hangs above the bed.

Name: Christy Stewart and cats Eva and Mia
Location: Rogers Park — Chicago, Illinois
Type of home: Apartment
Size: 750 square feet
Years lived in: 18 months, renting

The antique typesetter tray shows off shells, gemstones, and other tiny knick-knacks.

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: I’m a social worker and I’ve been living in Chicago about six years now. I moved to Rogers Park in spring 2021 and immediately fell in love. I live so close to the beach that I started swimming every morning in the summer, which has honestly been a life-changing habit. I adore my cats and definitely consider what will make them comfortable when designing and decorating my space. I love my apartment and adore my neighborhood.

My apartment is constantly changing and evolving, and tends to reflect the seasonal cycles. I also try to buy secondhand as much as possible, and try to consider the comfort of other folks who may spend time in my apartment in addition to my own comfort.

The gallery wall in the living room is filled with thrifted finds.

In these ways, I think the look and feel of my space does stem from my identity and the things that matter to me. I want my home to be relaxing but also inspiring, which is sometimes a difficult line to toe, but I’m currently enjoying the result.

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: Cozy thrifted eclectic maximalist

Cozy reading nook in the living room.

What is your favorite room and why? That’s a tough question to answer because I intentionally designed the space to flow naturally, so I don’t tend to think about distinctions between the rooms, especially now that I spend less time working from home. However, my answer has to be the living room because I absolutely adore the French windows and the sunlight they let in.

I use the dining room as a workspace, which is just off the very tiny kitchen.

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? Mums for my window planters! I enjoy making little changes to mark the seasons.

Any advice for creating a home you love? Fill it with things you love, and things that remind you of people and places you love.

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