Apartment Tour

Hope everyone is staying warm and safe today with this blizzard! Garrett and I cut our trip a bit short and came back to NYC early yesterday morning to avoid travel delays. Definitely plan on staying inside and snuggling up with a book or two. (Actually, I have tasked myself with backing up my entire laptop on my external hard drive so I can wipe the whole thing and free up space. Wish me luck with that one…)
Speaking of staying cozy inside all day… my apartment tour is live on Style Me Pretty Living. There’s a short interview as well. I wanted to include some more about my apartment and a few more photos that weren’t included here. 
Starting with… this is very staged. My apartment never looks like this. Maybe it gets close once a week when I do a standard clean up of everything. But for the most part? It’s a mess. I simply have too many things in a small place. Not pictured in the whole tour? The inside of the bathtub where I hid as much of the clutter as I could. 
This is my first apartment, ever. I’ve signed my lease three times (that is, in September I will have lived in the space for three years). Moving in NYC is not fun and it’s so much more cost effective to avoid moving if you can. My rent has only marginally gone up every year, but never enough where the increase in rent every year was more than what it would cost to actually move (first/last rent + security deposit, moving costs, broker fees if applicable). I really love my neighborhood, too. So I didn’t have a reason to move.
The one problem is that the things that were important to me when I was 22 and looking for an apartment aren’t necessarily the same things that are important to me as a 25 year old. The biggest thing on that list? The kitchen. 
My kitchen is nothing to write home about, although it does get the job done. It’s hard to tell in the photo, but it’s actually a hallway that just happens to have cabinets and appliances. If you swing open the not-quite-full-sized refrigerator, it hits the other wall. The dishwasher is pretty awesome though!
Most of my furniture is Ikea. At this stage of my life, I’m not really interested in investing in furniture. It doesn’t make that much sense in a NYC apartment. If I’m going to start investing in bigger pieces, it will be when I have a more permanent space (ideally, a house…). My apartment dimensions are on the smaller side, so I don’t want to spend a ton of money on, say, a bed that I wouldn’t even use in my next stage of life space. 
One thing I did invest in? The wallpaper in my bedroom. I’m REALLY glad I did this. It seriously changed my view on my bedroom/office space. The timing was perfect too as I went from working in an office and spending next to no time in my apartment to working from home and spending a lot of time in my apartment. (I hired a paperhanger I found online to install the wallpaper.) My bedroom feels so much more cheery and less NYC dreary with the paper.
I used to have this leaning bookshelf in the living room and ended up swapping it out for a bigger bookshelf and using this instead of a second nightstand. I thought it would bother me from a symmetrical perspective, but the added storage way outweighs that issue. 
And my tiny little desk nook. It’s not the prettiest workspace in the world… I dream of the day when I can devote an entire room to my office space. 
You can (literally) throw a ball from my window all the way through my living room and into the end of the bathroom. Which I do… all the time… with Teddy. He sleeps a lot while I work, but sometimes he wants a little extra attention and I’ll stay at my desk throwing the ball with him up and down the apartment. 
The two beautiful windows in my bedroom? Apparently meant to offset the fact that my living room has zero natural light. It could be three in the afternoon or three in the morning. You can’t tell! Now, if this was a studio, there wouldn’t be a wall blocking the light. Apartments in NYC are all about compromise. I would 100% prefer to have a legitimate bedroom and no natural light in my living room than a studio. Not everyone is like that, but having a separate space feels much better mentally for me.
My living room design was a combination from Havenly’s inspiration and Garrett’s execution. I used to hate my living room and now I absolutely love it. The pink couch was a weird impulse buy on my end. While it’s not the most ideal sitting arrangement, it works. (Barely. Oy.) 
You also may be wondering? Where’s the kitchen table? So I do have a kitchen table, but it’s currently used for storage. There’s a printer on there right now and I tend to keep all of the products I’m planning on photographing for outfit photos there. These would be things things that I would ideally have in an office…
My bathroom is really nice in my opinion, at least for city standards. The storage in here is KEY. One thing that’s changed since the photos were taken is that I hung two prints above my nail polish. Made it look a little more polished.
Photos by Cynthia Chung
Wallpaper: Anthropologie
Bed: Ikea
Bedside table: Target (c/o)
Leaning bookshelf: Container Store
Bedding: Crane and Canopy (c/o)
Coral pillow: Caitlin Wilson (c/o)
Bow pillow: Caitlin Wilson (c/o)
Live Colorfully pillow: Kate Spade
Circle texture pillow: Rue La La
Lamps: Safavieh
Desk Area:
Desk: West Elm
Chair: Ikea
Monogrammed pencil cup: Design Darling (c/o)
Mouse pad: Tory Burch
Framed Vogue print: Rue La La
Living Room:
Couch: Gilt
Coffee table: Ikea
Rug: Safavieh
Framed prints: Rue La La, a few I painted, Vogue prints cut from a book
Dalmatian spots pillows: Furbish Studios
Geometric stripes: Gilt
Key hole pillows: Target (c/o)
Blanket: Target (c/o)
Tray: Kate Spade (c/o Lifeguard Press)
Marble side table: Safavieh
Bookcase: Target (c/o)
Shower curtain: Target
Bins: Target
Nail polish storage: Container Store 
Watercolor girl: Marnani Design
Framed print: Evelyn Henson

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Southwestern Prepster

I love your apartment! I have friends and family who live in New York, but like you've done, it's all about how you decorate and use the space to really make it more! I'm in love with your living room and that bookshelf in your room – I wish I had room for one in my dorm! Great post, thanks for sharing!
xx, Mikkaela
The Southwestern Prepster

A Peachy Sonder

It looks like you've done a great job making your place feel like home and reflect your taste! It's such a hard thing to do as a renter. I love the glimpse into your place, thanks for sharing!

Jordyn Brown

You have tons of great ideas here on how to maximize storage in a small apartment. Although I live down south (which typically means I can have more room for less money!) my apartment at school is much smaller than the house I share with my fiance' back in our hometown. I love how organized your little office space is, it makes me want to clean up my little desk & add some polish!

xoxo, SS


Jaclyn Frazier

Anthropologie has the best wallpaper! We used it all over the boutique where I work! I especially loved the picture of you sitting at your desk playing with Teddy. This post makes me want to add to my gallery wall.

Xo Metro Magnolia


I love that you make the most of the space you have! Our bathroom is small, just like yours. I wish we had more space for things like that cute little flower in the mason jar. I can barely fit a soap bottle on ours 😉 But, I can't complain about the rest of the space we have!

26 and Not Counting


I also have a loft apartment with absolutely ZERO natural light in the living room! It sucks, but it was the compromise I had to make for living in a location I love. You've done a great job with the space for what you have to work with!

Kerri Koen

I loved seeing your apartment on SMP, but I love this post so much more! So down to earth & real – it's exactly what keeps me coming back! Thank you for sharing this post … and your wallpaper (because it is GORGEOUS).


What kind of coffee/espresso machine do you have? I have a Nespresso machine and it's one of my best/favorite purchases ever!


I loved this apartment. I had a dream to have this apartment. I like the way how you design your interior. If I invest for this house then it will be the best investments for me.