I Got the Apartment!
Reading time: 2:30
I walked down the most beautiful Brooklyn block that looked like it belonged in Sex and the City 3: four-story brownstones on one side and pastel townhomes on the other, tree-lined with flower beds peeking up through the spring soil. This "new" borough gave me the best vibes and this apartment had everything I wanted (right down to the organic juicery two doors down) AND it was under budget. I knew this was where I needed to spend the next several years. (and lucky me - I was approved!).
The Dramatic Reason for my Change of Heart
I loved my old lower Manhattan neighborhood for what it was: full of buzzing energy, bars on every corner, a $1 pizza slice shop next door, and yes, even the furry little creatures that came out at night. But one day I had enough of having my bed against a wall and cramming everything in a single kitchen cupboard (and in true SATC fashion - sweaters stored in my oven).
I decided that I needed a complete re-haul on my living space when, well over a year ago, I went on a second date with a 40-something Ivy-league educated healthcare banker. He was whip-smart, devilishly handsome, and he liked me to boot. He spoke three languages, loved to travel, and was even talking about a cruise he wanted to take "someone" on (can we say, perfect?). But when he dropped me off at my front door I realized my apartment was no place to entertain a successful investment banker. And I’m not saying this for pity - it was the truth! I couldn't (and wouldn't) let him inside - It was more fitting for a t-shirt wearing, video game playing 30-year old. (UPDATE: I never saw Ivy-League Guy after I shot him down). So, I decided a full overhaul was necessary, when the opportunity arises again I would be ready.
Apartment Style Goals
I believe that much of a person’s happiness comes from where they spend the most time - most often at home. And the truth was that I wasn’t happy in my apartment anymore. I had outgrown it in more ways than one - and so I decided to head to Brooklyn where quiet, pizza- free blocks were abundant.
After I landed this dream apartment, I sat down to go over my goals in regards to style, mood, and decor. I had 5 weeks before I moved in (ages in NYC time), and didn’t want to wait one more second to start on mood boards and ordering furniture! With all the traveling I do and the hotels and Airbnb’s I’d stayed in the past 4 years, I wanted to pull a lot of inspiration from my trips to places like Japan (clean lines), Santorini (color), and India (metallics).
Apartment living in big metro areas like NYC make “living permanently” a challenge for many. People move jobs, significant others, and roommates frequently, so New Yorkers are living for years within four unpainted walls and full of Ikea furniture (disclaimer - I have plenty of Ikea furniture for my beauty room - it IS the best for organizing!).
My goals for this apartment were solid!
1. To fall in love with my space and not bring anything into it that doesn’t spark joy.
2. To have a place for ALL of my things to go - like I was in a luxury hotel and it's so pretty you don't want to see any clutter.
3. Make it look like a permanent home, complete with custom details and (removable) wallpaper (wallpaper post to come!).
4. Find and tease the line between affordable, yet luxurious looking.
5. And one last thing: No beige. :-D
First Step: DIY paint my bedframe
The biggest piece of furniture I owned (other than my floor-to-ceiling, carefully curated Ikea Pax units) was a solid cherry wood 4-post bed frame I was given nearly 10 years ago by a client before I moved to NYC. Its been to 1 condo and 4 apartments with me, seen me through two foot surgeries, and countless phone conversations and nights snuggling with my pup. It was beautiful, complete with luxurious hand-carved bedposts, but the cherry wood was looking dated. I decided to make my first DIY project painting it black - high-gloss of course. Stay tuned, my post on How to DIY Paint Your Bed Frame (or any piece of wood furniture really) to come soon! Check out my "before" pic ---> and see ya soon!