I’m so excited to share my apartment tour with you guys- in full! With photos taken on a real camera, by an actual photographer! I’ll be back with more comments on this, but for now I just want to thank the wonderful people at The Everygirl for being so great, for inspiring girls everywhere, and for capturing my tiny apartment in such a great light. (Photography puns!!)
This feature + iced coffee = I may have a heart attack today.
Here’s some sneak peeks…click the link at the bottom of the post for the full tour on The Everygirl!
I’m getting a little carried away with the Aladdin references, it’s true. Sorry. It’s just like…what are you supposed to do when you have a beautiful Persian rug/magic carpet that you’ve dreamed of resting happily on your living room floor? The correct answer is: watch several Aladdin videos on YouTube and then write a blog post.
The living room got two major updates. One was planned, and one was serendipitous. The Persian rug resting on a braided jute rug: planned. The coffee table update: a sweet find on my way home from picking up the rug. So, let’s start at the rug!
I’d been looking for a new living room rug for a few months. I loved my old Ikea rug, but it needed a steam clean or to be replaced entirely. Since the cost of getting the rug steam cleaned was equivalent to the cost of replacing the rug, I decided to replace it. And by replace it I mean get totally distracted by all the pretty Persian rugs/kilims I was seeing on Pinterest and get one of those instead.
This is the original picture of the rug from Craigslist. At 3’x5′ and $100, it was priced *considerably* lower than most other Persians or kilims that I was seeing on Craigslist and eBay. I loved the colors and patterns instantly, even from the crappy photo. The owner clearly knew what she was talking about, listing the region where the rug came from (Hamadan), the knot count, and the decade it was made in (1920s). I was in love/sold.
I drove about 20 miles to go pick it up and had the sweetest exchange with the owner. She and her husband are empty-nesters and are downsizing. The rug was her grandmother’s and used to live in her grandmother’s Manhattan apartment. She hated to get rid of it, but that’s what happens when you downsize. She was so thrilled the rug was going somewhere where it would be appreciated and even hugged me as I left. Craigslist is the BEST.
And now for the “if you give a mouse a cookie” portion of the story. As I headed home with the rug in my trunk, I realized that my large, low white coffee table would cover up a sizeable portion of the rug. Can’t have that! I remembered that a store by my apartment, Uptown Modern, was having a sidewalk sale that day. Uptown Modern sells vintage and refurbished mid-century modern furniture. I had an idea of what I’d want from a coffee table for the new rug- higher, long, maybe a touch of natural wood. Welp. That exact table I had envisioned was sitting out on their sidewalk sale at a great price. Sold!
I knew the Persian rug was too small for the space, so I grabbed a braided jute rug from RugsUSA at an incredible price to layer underneath it. I was worried about the quality, but I’ve had it for about 4 weeks and it shows no sign of wear from Finn’s nails. I was so impressed with their ship time as well- especially since shipping is free.
I’m just so happy with how it all came together. Basically they should make a sequel to Serendipity about my living room. I am still so tickled with the rug- I love all of its little imperfections. You can see that it is a rug that has lived a little, which is what I hope people say about me when I’m 95 years old. The jute rug is the perfect size, and it’s actually super soft and comfy. And the coffee table is so perfect- I love the natural wood, the black pointy legs, the unique shelf…ugh. Yah. The whole space gives me…indescribable feelings. Soaring, tumbling, freewheeling through an endless diamond sky A WHOLE NEWWW WORLD.
A few side notes: 1) Is Finn even real with his posing? Has he been practicing when I’m not home? 2) Just want to make it ruhl clear that Uptown Modern and RugsUSA have no idea who I am since I got all gushy/promotional sounding. I just like them and their products enough to recommend them to you fine people. 3) That fabulous indigo mudcloth pillow is from Sealight Designs. If you have the indigo itch as bad as I do, I can’t recommend her shop enough! 4) I want to let you know that I sold the Ikea rug on Craigslist and sold my West Elm white coffee table to a coworker moving into a new apartment. If you are like me and attach feelings to inanimate objects, rest easy knowing the rug and the coffee table are both in happy, loving homes.
What serendipitous finds made you guys happy enough to sing Disney lyrics??
Now that I’ve picked my jaw up off the floor after the excitement of the Apartment Therapy feature last week, it’s time to press on with the remaining handful of square feet of this tiny apartment house tour. So hold on to your butts, cause it’s time to check out the dining room!
This room has gone through several configurations since moving in. First, it was empty. But my heart was full…of panic that my stuff would not fit in this tiny room.
Guess what- it didn’t fit! My chairs were too large and too many. Technically everything could squeeze in there, but it was very hard to get to the cabinet behind the table. That cabinet (a Craigslist piece) holds my baking dishes, mixing bowls, food processor, and most importantly my wine glasses, so having difficult access to that storage was not ideal. (Side note: does anyone else type “bowels” every time they try to type “bowls”? It makes for a very confusing sentence.)
After the wooden chairs made their exit and the Ikea Craigslisted Tobias chairs entered, which I blogged about here, access to my wine glasses became easier. The room got a lot lighter- the space is definitely more suited to a bistro-style set up. It works great as a place to work or to sit and have dinner when Matt and I want to act like normal, functioning adults.
The next change happened during a New Year’s burst of energy- I got rid of my beloved pink polka-dotted rug. It was something about shedding unnecessary belongings during the new year, or I just got tired of staring at the evidence of Finn’s house-training days that were left on the rug despite several cleanings. Either way, it’s gone now, and it wasn’t easy but I think we’re all better for it.
It’s also way easier to sweep Finn’s never-ending shedding hair without the rug.
My lil mail/laptop station table was something I found in the As-Is room at Ikea. That room is so full of hope and equally full of disappointment. I always check it, though- just in case. I think this means I’m an optimist.
I blogged about this little mail organizer dude here– I still love it and it keeps my laundry quarters/sunglasses/receipts in case I end up hating my Gap purchase tucked away.
All of the art in these frames are just images I found on Pinterest/the interwebz and printed on cardstock. Art on the cheaps and no one knows the difference except now all of you do. Frick.
Earlier I mentioned that Matt and I like to act like functioning adults sometimes. Nothing legitimizes a weekday cocktail like an actual “bar” set up. The large print is a hand-me-down but can be found at the Georgia O’Keeffe museum in Santa Fe, the metal star is from Tesoros Trading Company, the pink mask was purchased from a street vendor in New Orleans, and the cactus is the only one I haven’t killed.
Just one more tiny space to go before finishing this home tour! The bedroom is up next.
What are some of the ways you make a small dining space feel larger? Is anyone actually eating in their dining rooms anymore? Have you had to take a moment to grieve the loss of a wonderful rug recently? I’m here for you.