I debated posting photos of our whole home because, well, it’s pretty ugly right now. We have not lived here very long, and with the wedding planning and spending, we have not had a lot of time or money to make the place beautiful. That will change, with time, and I am coming to accept that. I want my blog to be honest and open, as well as a place for me to look back on my life. This my first home with Mr. Converse Sneakers and I would like to remember it, ugliness and all.
Now that I’ve prefaced that, I would also like to apologize for the photos. Our living space (we have a roommate – read about that here) takes up the basement level of our townhouse apartment which has a total of one medium size window that looks out to a bunch of stones that make our fire escape. I’m slowly learning how to take better photos in the rooms that do not get any natural light.
Our home is one of a very large community of townhouse apartments. We live in one strip that sits facing another strip which you can actually see in the window reflections. We have a beautiful grassy area in front of our apartment called the courtyard with gorgeous trees. The landscaping here is beautiful and we don’t pay any extra for it! If you notice, we even have a little mail slot next to the door – it’s those little details that made me fall in love with the place.
Upstairs Living Room
From the front door (which nobody uses since the back door leads to our parking lot), we enter the upstairs living room which is technically our roommate’s, but Mr. Converse Sneakers and I use it once in a while. Interesting fact: my father and I (okay mostly just my dad) made the white bookshelf you see in the photo above. It worked well in this room so we left it. Our roommate is quite the artist and painted the painting above the sofa. I have a lot to say about sources and everything, but I will wait until another day to do that, since most of it is ugly anyway and I’m not sure anyone really cares with the apartment looking like it does right now.
I love the light up here! We love waking up and coming upstairs to peek at the cats sitting in the windows in the apartments across the courtyard.
The living room opens up into the kitchen. We love that they are separate rooms but they flow well into one another. To the left of this doorway is our roommate’s “wing” of the apartment with his bedroom, bathroom, and large hall closet. The pantry closet is also there but is not worth picturing.
Although I would never choose these cabinets, for apartments in our price range, this kitchen is awesome. It is much brighter than most and has a decent amount of cabinets and countertop space.
Luckily for us, it is a good size and has a special spot just for our table!
You may be wondering why there are only two chairs when three people live here. When I show you the bedroom it will make more sense. We have to make an Ikea run to pick a couple more chairs since both our roommate and I have stolen two of the dining chairs to use as office chairs.
Do you see my pear in the background of the photo above? That’s one of my favorite pieces! I got it at TJ Maxx for $7. It’s pretty much a paper mache pear covered in green leaves. It’s awesome!
Downstairs (Our) Living Room
In the kitchen, across from the back door (not pictured), we have a door that leads down to the basement and straight into our living room. I don’t love that the couch is visible from the top of the stairs, but we make do with what we have.
This is the most bland room in the whole apartment. The ottoman was borrowed from the upstairs living room (it goes with the big comfy chair up there), but we just bought a new one and it should be arriving soon! I hate the access panel seen to the left of the photo above but it’s yet another thing we have to work with, not against.
Mr. Converse Sneakers likes his video game consoles, and he won’t let me hide them, so they sit out for everyone to see. Sigh . . . Marriage is all about give and take, right? He would let me hide all of his games and all of our movies which were an eyesore when displayed in those cubes, so we bought the bins to put everything in and now my eyes are much happier! The door to the left leads to our bedroom.
Here is the view from our bedroom door. You can see the weights and exercise ball we shoved into the corner. I have plans for all of these things – one day! We are extremely grateful for my parents who gave/lent (depending on who needs it more in the future) us that beautiful camel back sofa and the nice slipcover it’s wearing. Underneath the fabric is definitely from the 90s, but with the slipcover, its curves really show, and boy is it comfy!
From the far wall you can see into our bathroom and back up the stairs.
Mr. Converse Sneakers and I share a 3/4 bath. It is actually a very good size (for being in an apartment). The door in the back leads to our laundry room which I will share on a different day when it is looking a little more presentable.
That chalkboard will be hung up one day and we hope to switch the towels out for tan ones (most likely) since we have a lot of brown and black clashing going on in here (as well as in our bedroom).
Here is the view from the laundry room door.
My mom gave me the four wooden art squares for Christmas a few years back and they matched my bedroom back then perfectly. Now, I still like them, but don’t really know where to put them. They are in here for now and they will probably stay here since I have no motivation to spruce up that bathroom. It’s the least of my worries.
Since Mr. CS and I both use our computers a lot and I am still in school, we needed a dedicated desk area. The only place we had any room for it was in our bedroom. It’s not the prettiest, but it has been great for office storage and for working. We have plans for making it prettier, too!
In the photo above you can also see the weird access doors in the ceiling (there is a total of three) and the support beam that runs along the middle of the ceiling in both this room and the living room. Fun, right?
I love big, white fluffy bedding, but in a space where we can’t paint the walls, it just wasn’t going to do (I’m not a fan of all-white rooms). I also love patterned bedding, but Mr. CS and I cannot agree on any pattern, so we went with this comforter in my favorite blue and his man-approved tan and brown colors. The pillows are not permanent. Notice no wall art. That’s a theme for us right now. You can’t really see the headboard buried behind all the pillows, but I made it with my parents a few years ago. We plan on recovering it since it clashes with our bedding that is a lightly bluer aqua blue.
We share two teeny-tiny closets. The one on the left has shelves and the one on the right has two bars to hang clothes. I will definitely be showing them off once I figure out how the heck to keep them tidy! The cheap-o Target mirror was hung between the closets, but it fell off. It’s also on our list of things to do.
Here is another view of our desk. We just recently got a new printer, which got moved to the living room (if you want to know where it is – scroll back up and look behind the bathroom door – it’s yet another thing we have to figure out what to do with) freeing up tons of space since the old one sat on the file cabinet. We would like to add curtains (working ones since the crappy blinds we have to live with do not completely block out the view from outside, giving people a straight shot to view us changing at night from the sidewalk in front of the apartment) and will be making the desk area prettier as time goes by. Matching chairs are also on the list.
There you have it: our functional, yet not too pretty home! I will be breaking the rooms in more detail in the future and will definitely be sharing any changes we make along the way (and hopefully there will be lots of them). I also will be sharing what we would do with the place if we owned it, since right now we are very limited since we are restricted by our lease. I dream of beautifully painted walls and crown molding, but I’ll save my other dreams for another day.
Are you a renter? What do you do to spruce up your place when you can’t make any major changes? If you are married, what did your first home with your spouse look like?