i have been wanting to do a home tour of our apartment for a while now and finally got around to taking the pics! mind you they were on my iphone so the quality isn’t that great and i did a LOT of editing in vsco, but you get the gist of our home pretty well:
coming this october, we will have been in our astoria (that’s in queens!) apartment for 4 years!!! what we thought was just going to be a one-year thing has lasted us this long. i remember when i first moved out to nyc how daunting apartment hunting was. it was right after college and tyler was still living back in minneapolis so i was embarking on this journey alone. i had no where idea where to begin - there are so many websites and sometimes it can be hard to tell what is real and what is a scam. i scoured manhattan and the boroughs on weekends, after work and even during work sometimes. it was a nightmare. i actually remember walking through brooklyn softly crying to myself and thinking how this is NEVER going to happen. but, i came across a listing on craigslist for a junior 1BR located in astoria. i didn’t know much about queens, but the commute was really short and the apartment had charm. so i went and looked, made a downpayment and two days later it was MINE! i called up tyler and told him to book his one way flight because, baby, WE HAVE AN APARTMENT!
for a long, long time our apartment was kind of a sad place. since it was our first place ever we started from scratch with all of our furniture besides the bed (thanks aunt jane and uncle brian!). with only one of us having a job right away (tyler was still searching for one) ikea was basically our go-to place. ugh, i wish i could show you the evolution of our apartment so badly!! for a while it was just white walls, a futon, a kitchen table and a bed. but eventually we both had jobs, and promotions happened and we were able to really make it our own. :) just to be upfront, i have a VERY heavy hand in the decorating (if you thought tyler picked out the unicorn pillow, think again! haha). tyler though knows that once i have a vision, he might as well just let it come to fruition because there is NO stopping me. and i love him so so much for that quality :) i think if i didn’t go to school for advertising, it definitely would have been interior design. i particularly love mid-century modern, so a lot of our apartment has that vibe. but hey, tyler did the gallery wall above our bed (one of the first things he did when he moved out here!) and that has been a staple in our bedroom. it is filled with art tyler has made, photos we love, and art done by my talented friend samantha. <3
living in nyc and in a tiny apartment garners lot of questions. it is a bit foreign to our family and friends back home and to be honest, suburban life is just different from city life. one isn’t better than the other and there are pros and cons to both scenarios. obviously space is a HUGE topic of conversation. the truth is it is really challenging. like a lot of people who own a house or even just a much larger apartment, we don’t have the luxury of having a lot of “stuff”. sometimes that can be a pain, but i’ve seen it sort of as a blessing in disguise. not having space really makes you think about what you need vs. what you want. 2-3 times a year tyler and i will go through all of our clothes and clean out things we no longer wear and donate them or take them to this spot, buffalo exchange, to try and get some cash back!! doing this is actually very cleansing. my rule is typically if i haven’t worn it in a year, then out it goes! we also LIVE for space under furniture. we store a ton of things under the bed and couch in plastic bins. also, our closets help enormously. lucky for us, our apartment has two pretty spacious ones that go all the way up to the ceiling (our ceilings are 10ft!). so we are able to do a lot with that space as well. sure, i would love to have a spare closet for more things or even hide all of that junk above our cabinets, but we are working with what we have and so far it hasn’t been THAT bad. :)
you might also notice in the pictures above that we don’t own a tv. based on the layout of the apartment, there isn’t really a great spot, however i do have something in my mind that i have been wanting to do, but i’m just trying to convince tyler to get on board ;) stay tuned. for now, we just watch shows off our ipad and computer and it works out! (sling and netflix is basically all you need in life). we also don’t have a dishwasher, which DEF sucks sometimes, but it forces us to clean our dishes right after we eat - it is a pain and a plus at the same time. and don’t just assume that i do them, tyler and i usually trade off who does dishes based on who made dinner so that it is fair for the other person :) and if you were wondering if we had a washer/dryer, we sure don’t! but luckily our laundromat is just right around the corner. i really thought that was going to be difficult to get used to, but it isn’t bad at all. and if you are feeling super luxurious, you can do wash and fold - you drop your dirty laundry off and you pick it in a clean, folded bag :) i actually have yet to do this…what am i thinking?!?
as i mentioned, we have done a TON of modifications over the past 3 years. everything from painting, to new furniture to my most recent project - the kitchen counters and backsplash. YOU GUYS. if you are renting an apartment and your countertops are hideous, i highly recommend trying marble contact paper. it completely transformed the space. and if you hate your boring painted wall, you can buy removable backsplash tiles! i am so happy with how it turned out (let me know if you are interested more on this topic!).
there is still a lot of work i want to do with our aparment, but i really feel like we have maximized our space in all ways possible. tyler and i love coming home to a space that feels cozy and personal vs. a drab blank slate. for you renters out there, paint your walls, hang up art and make the space your own. you will feel SO much happier - flowers also help :) all in all, tyler and i are very happy with our cozy junior 1BR apartment. who knows how much longer we will be in this exact space. all i know is i am enjoying the days we are here because i know it will be so sad when it comes time to leave!
ps - almost all of our furniture is from target, cb2, wayfair and west elm!