living/dining room and kitchen

It’s really just one giant great room with a kitchen in the corner on the end. I can’t say I am a fan of kitchens like these- they are so closed off and I feel very disconnected to Topher and little guy when they are at the dining table. These seem to be fairly common in apartments though so that’s what we are dealing with. I love the rest of the layout of the place so this is pretty much my only grievance. I’ve been promising pictures forever and while there is still a lot to do, I think it’s safe to say that I’ve done a lot as well and I think right now is a nice little progress mid-point. I go through phases- one week I am obsessed with finishing it and getting as much done as possible and then the I take a 2-3 week break where I could care less or am just too busy focused on other things to care about it. Let me start with a good/not terrible shot. Keep in mind these are taken by me so the photography leaves a lot to be desired of course.

living and dining

This is the view from the front door. See what I mean about one long giant room. It was begging for some separation when we moved in. I haven’t measured it, but I could probably do about 4-5 cartwheels from one end to the other. I won’t call out everything- some things aren’t cool enough to talk about, but the black and white striped chairs are kind of my favorite and they were craigslist finds that I reupholstered. The coffee table was also a craigslist find….if Topher asks it was only $50 :) The collage wall needs some serious help. I pretty much insisted that we get the collage wall up before we moved in and I’m so glad I did- it has really helped make this room feel finished. HOWEVER…I’m only ok with about 10% of that artwork- the rest needs to either be changed or actually filled since some of those frames are completely empty. I chuckle at the fact that we have one of those cheesy motivation posters (perseverance) up there. I think I grabbed it from my dad’s office. It was in the closet under a pile of boxes…I’m assuming that meant it was fair game. But yes…the frame is great, the artwork….notsomuch.

collage wall

living room

There’s my little Fidel in the corner- he’s a fidlde leaf fig that I got at Ikea and I’m happy we haven’t killed him. Topher has been taking very good care of him! He was looking a little rough there for awhile and I thought we were going to lose him, but he looks much better now. I dream of a tall fiddle leaf there, but for now he will have to do.

tv wall

This photo makes me cringe. Not only am I revealing my secrets for running around the house snapping photos (step one- plop child in front of TV, step two- done), but it also shows this sad sad depressing wall. It needs some serious help. I would love to create a little mini entry with some hooks, small table, and a mirror. I’m currently hoarding two mirrors that would work, so it’s really just a matter of figuring out what else we need here. I also had the idea today to paint this wall- it’s just a portion of wall that ends right to the left where the hallway starts- I think this might be a cool place to do a fun accent wall of color. I am very anti- accent wall and the fact that I just typed the phrase “accent wall” makes me feel like I jumped in a time machine back to 2002, but stay with me…I think it could work here. I got that console table on craigslist last year- I had no idea where it was going at the time, but for $100 I couldn’t pass it up. It’s too unique and awesome. It desperately needs to be painted…it’s currently brown. Yes…brown. I’m envisioning a bright inky blue wall with that console being white and then switching out the gigantor TV for something more appropriately sized and moving that monstrosity to the bedroom. Maybe then putting some sconces on the sides of said properly sized TV? There are no overhead lights in here, so more lighting would be very welcome.

dining room

Here’s our dining area. We installed those ikea shelves about a month ago and I’ve been in love ever since. This is a terrible photo, but they add a lot of personality to the room. Plus I have a lot of junk prized possessions that I love having a place to display. I’ve childproofed the bottom two shelves- they are books and non-breakable things and for the most part have trained Phoenix not to mess with them. Amazingly, after a few sessions of telling him not to touch the books or climb the shelves (they are screwed into studs in several places though) he doesn’t really mess with them. He does sometimes bring a few of his toys to help with the styling of them though. Daniel Tiger looks great atop a stack of design books :) Oh and Hi Petey!!

dining room 2

This dining room actually already looks different. I just sold those industrial chairs on craigslist as of about an hour ago they walked out of my life forever. They are cute and trendy chairs sure, but they weren’t comfortable and just weren’t jiving with the rest of the apartment. I’m not really into industrial things for myself so they just seemed a bit out of place. Not to mention that the scale of them is puny and we actually just finished re-finishing that pedestal table (which I LOVE) and now that it’s dark- the chairs just blended right in. It wasn’t helping that they were the same height as the table so there wasn’t even that added interest of chair shape poking above the table. I have something else a little different in mind…which I need to get soon so we’re not chairless for too long! As for refinishing that table here’s what it looked like before.


Topher sanded the top down to bare wood and we repainted the bottom black. We stained the top a dark brown- it’s actually so dark that the entire table looks black which I really like. As long as we get different chairs, something lighter and brighter I think it will help the table start to shine.

desk nook

Since I have my own office, it seemed only fair that Topher got a little something too. He doesn’t work from home very often, but it’s nice for him to have a place to stash his books and bills. Plus I enjoy the chance to have a cute little styling moment. We need to change out the artwork here (add a little more color), but overall I love this little corner.

bar nook

Here you can see the pass through to the kitchen. Like I said it’s very closed off unfortunately, but it works. I DIY’d a bit of artwork above and am still on the hunt for the perfect barstools. Our back door opens up right here as well so we need something petite that can tuck under the counter. Jury’s still out on the artwork- I’m likely to paint over that at any moment. And the most exciting thing going on over here…I’ve started painting!! In wanting to paint the living and dining room, the kitchen was kind of a packaged deal since it’s all connected. I somehow started here and ended up painting the entire kitchen…getting the rest painted has been on hold for the last few weeks, but I’m hoping I can get cracking on that again now too.

kitchen backsplash

In painting the kitchen white I decided that a easy backsplash needed to happen- so I painted the “backsplash” navy. It really helps make things a little more special in here. I’ve found a few renter countertop solutions that would also help in here to cover up this terrible painted on granite, but to be honest this room is low on the priority list so it may be awhile or not at all when I do anything to that. Oh and please excuse our dirty dishes :) That’s all for now!


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