The Thrifted Treehaus

Today’s post is my reflecting on the reality of decorating a truly tight space.

IMG_1286 (Bruno says, Mom.  The plant is too big.)

I’ve done a studio before.  In comparison, that now seems stately; 500 sq ft, floor-to-ceiling sash windows, period features, separate kitchen, overlooking a private square.

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This time, it’s possibly 300 sq, and a rental.  I’m stuck with an unfortunate kitchen, white walls, and fixtures.

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Because of budget and uncertainties, my hands were all the more tied.  After I secured the lease, before returning to London, my only splurge was a Noguchi lamp.  The lamp is made of paper.  It collapses easily, making it a portable investment.

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I also bought a carpet on sale, a used table and a chair.  Then the apartment looked like this-

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We arrived back in New York exactly 2 weeks ago.  My bed was delivered, we moved in.

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My mother advised thrifting.  Once the couch was placed, there was a great unleashing within me.

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Hallway then-

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Hallway now.

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I discovered, macrame.

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The thrifting experience taught me to really go beyond the familiar.  Vintage garments became installation art, energizing lifeless walls.

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A sake cup was repurposed as a pot.

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Along with macrame, re-purposing found objects, I learnt to use plants as art to soothe, to shield, and   to demarcate “zones”.

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One of the peeves I have with studio-living is, it can feel as if you are sleeping in the kitchen.  I wanted to create separate zones for rest, and for activity.  At the same time, I didn’t want to hang curtains, nor use screens.  I wanted a new expression.

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In Brooklyn, I met Mr Handsome.  When delivered, I realized how greedy I was to want him, as he loomed too large, and necessitated change.

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But once things were re-organised, I love his sense of authority and drama.  So here’s another belief I have- especially in small spaces, don’t be afraid to make a statement.

A statement piece needs to pull weight and multi-task.

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Mr Handsome provided all the storage I needed for unhung clothes, and concealed shelving for books.  He also clarified areas such that now in 300 sq feet, not only do I have a living room-

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I also have, a bedroom!

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Then-

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Now-

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Then-

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Now-

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Then-

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Now-

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I had considered re-painting, wall-papering, removing the cabinet doors.  But decals, a first for me, was the most economical and practical solution.

IMG_1301 (No regrets!)

I’m calling my humble abode, The Thrifted Treehaus.  I’m enjoying it very much.  I’m tucked away on the top floor of a pre-war building, on a tree-lined street.  Surrounded by sky, rooftops and art, in the company of the most faithful of dogs, I can rest and work; my mind calm, my thoughts free.

  •  Macrame is made by a Brooklyn artist @prissagestudio
  • Decals (Tapestry Birds and Branches), Walls Need Love

 

 

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