The Inside Out: Boris' Act of Independence

The Inside Out: Boris' Act of Independence

Jill Slater
May 3, 2006

Name: Boris
Location: Lower East Side
Size: 800 sqft one-bedroom
Favorite: The fact that he found it and designed it himself

Boris is fortunate enough to have incredibly loving and attentive parents. The last time he wanted to strike out on his own and leave their apartment, they took care of everything and told him to focus on his work. This time, he wanted to try his hand at the entire unknown and incredibly challenging process.

A freelance journalist, Boris first wanted to find an apartment in a neighborhood of his choosing--one that was full of life and less sterile than his former UES 'hood. Then, he wanted to make the aesthetic decisions and to handle the logistics from start to finish. "I grew unimaginably in the process of buying, designing, and learning about the million things that go into all of it". In August of 2005, the saga began. In less than a month, it will have ended.

Do you have an idea for a house tour? Let me know!

For Boris, the journey of setting boundaries with his parents came in the guise of bathroom tile, and the desire to create a Mexican hacienda in a Mitchell Lama high rise on the Lower East Side. Choosing a sink was an assertive act. (The tiles for the sink counter are from the same source as the sink.)

The Mexican influence comes as a result of a vacation soon after closing on the apartment. Boris is going for deep and saturated colors for all the walls and for the tiles in the bathroom and kitchen. Although he hired a contractor, the apartment is being renovated for the most part by Boris' father. In the former Soviet Union, Boris' father was a "house painter, but also learned a lot about tiling, wiring, etc.--a kind of jack of all trades." The difference, this time, is that Boris has drafted diagrams and plans for every nook and cranny of the apartment and his father is following his instructions. Boris is on his "third notebook of notes and specifications."

I imagine that Boris will love this new apartment for all its successes and failures—as they are his successes and failures.

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