A Small Seattle Rental Shows How to Successfully Lay Out a Studio Apartment

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My living room space separated from sleeping/working space

Name: Lucy Vernasco and my orange tabby, Finney
Location: Phinney Ridge Neighborhood — Seattle, Washington
Type of home: Studio Apartment
Size: 600 square feet
Years lived in: 5 months, renting

Tell us a little (or a lot) about your home and the people who live there: I live in the Phinney Ridge neighborhood of Seattle right across from the Woodland Park Zoo with my small orange tabby cat Finney. Right before shelter in place began, I found this incredible corner studio apartment in a 1920s building. I love how it has a distinct kitchen and dining nook separated by French doors. The light here is incredible. Only one wall in my main area doesn’t have a window and the windows face south, east, and west. In the summer when everything is in bloom, I’m surrounded by greenery and trees and it feels like I live in a treehouse. Sadly, since adopting Finney, I’ve had to rehome some of my plants. But it’s worth it for this darling quarantine companion. She loves watching birds while perched in any one of the windows.

My bedroom corner of my sunny studio apartment

Finding affordable rent in a great location can be a challenge here in Seattle. Now that I’ve found this spot for such a great rate, I don’t think I’ll leave for years. Something funny I didn’t know before moving in is that you can hear the animals at the zoo! When it was very quiet all throughout the city March-May I could hear the Siamangs singing at any hour.

I use the big windowless wall for displaying my books, records, photos, cards and more

When I decorate my apartments, I like to use the space to tell a story about where I’ve been and what I love. While I bought some of my furniture when I moved into my new place in Seattle, I’ve had many of the pieces and decor in my previous apartments. I’ve moved around more than the average person (Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Washington DC, Portland, and now Seattle) and I’ve picked up art prints, furniture, and many books and records along the way. If someone were to walk into my place without knowing anything about me, they’d gather that I love the Pacific Northwest and the outdoors, I’m a big reader, plant-lover, and I’ve lived all over (I love maps). I have some of my own art creations around my place, too. I love making collages and practicing watercolor paints and sometimes I send my friends cards and postcards I make with my art. There’s a feeling of nostalgia and comfort in this apartment that’s created by a palette of muted pastels and previously loved furniture. I want anyone who walks into my place to feel at home and at ease.

Describe your home’s style in 5 words or less: Modern and vintage muted pastels

What is your favorite room and why? As much as I love the open main room in the apartment, my favorite place is the dining area of the kitchen. Later in the day, it’s filled with light and it’s quieter because none of the windows are facing the street. My loveseat I originally bought in Philadelphia at Jinxed has been with me for several moves, including Washington, DC, Portland, and now here. I wasn’t sure where it would fit in my new place because I have a larger couch now for my living room area. My mom had the great idea of putting it in the window at my dining table. I would have never considered it but it looks like it was always meant to be in this spot. Someday I hope to host friends and play board games around this table, which is the circle table from Floyd Detroit.

Where I spend most of my time working from home

What’s the last thing you bought (or found!) for your home? A couple months ago I bought my tan leather Siesta chair from a great vintage shop in Seattle named Sparklebarn. They opened a couple weeks before shelter in place and I wanted to support them while also finding a great lounge chair for my apartment. A few smaller things I’ve purchased include a Seattle map print from People I’ve Loved and a yellow vintage frame on Etsy. I also bought a banner from Golden Gems in St. Louis. I customized it to say “Finney’s House.” I guess I love my cat.

Any advice for creating a home you love? Find ways to organize your closets effectively and display what you love. Also, use the vertical space and incorporate mirrors to enhance the light. And if you tire of a furniture arrangement, don’t be afraid to move things around and change it up. We’re spending more time in our home than ever so it should be a place we love being.

My credenza. I never owned a TV until a year ago, but I really enjoy having a "content corner"

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