What a thrill it is to be featured on Apartment Therapy today!
I have long been a fan of everything on AT so it’s a real honor and privilege to even be mentioned alongside their content and profiles of other spaces!
This had been in the works for some time, but because I know you all hate spoilers I kept things on the QT. The same cannot be said however for the season finales of Homeland or Downton Abbey so your Spoiler Alert Threat Level Warnings should be set to TANGERINE from here on out, are we clear?
Now, if you’ve linked to this blog from AT’s article and are experiencing it for the first time welcome! As regular readers of This Is Not A House can attest, we do things a little differently around these parts. In the course of writing about rental renovations and affordable DIYs I often ramble and get lost on tangents. There may be times when I equate getting over a past relationship to refinishing a hardwood floor, or mention Target Lady when talking about regrouting your tub, but rest assured I’ve got a steady hand and know where I’m going with this. It takes awhile to get my point across but I guarantee the journey will have been worth it.
So please enjoy! And whether you’re a seasoned pro or an aspiring DIYer please please please let me and everyone else know what you’re doing! I’ve put my contact email in the sidebar and comments are enable on each post. I think the best thing about being a part of this community is sharing our ideas. (hashtag sentimental moment hashtag tear hashtag LUV U GUYZ)
Last but certainly not least, a very special thank you must be given to the brilliant Andrea Sparacio and her wonderful editor, Nancy Mitchell, for their generosity and kind words. Ladies, your tennis bracelets are in the mail.
Hi – I just linked here from AT and love your blog and style. We moved into our tiny London flat back in July last year (approx 400 sq ft for the 2 of us) and are busy trying to make a home. I’ve taken lots of pictures but am a little embarrassed to share them with the world – maybe one day… Looking forward to reading through your blog! Daisy
Hey Daisy! Thank you so much for writing! Have you thought about starting a blog, maybe a tumblr or something, and keeping the URL private? That’s how this blog started. It helped me organize my thoughts about the space and was a great reference for when I needed to go back and look at all the pictures. But when you are ready to share I’d love to see!
Excellent plan – I might have a go at that.
I thought your apartment looked amazing on AT! I am an AT fanatic, but live in an apt with carpet (the Devil’s sheets) and haven’t really done diy(ing) yet, but hope to get into it. What I really want to know is….WHERE DID YOU GET THAT POSTER?! That Coming to America image is AMAZING and I am hoping someone made that for you or something, b/c I would love to grab one for myself. Please let me know!
“The Devil’s sheets” is the best thing I’ve heard all week! I will specifically site you when I use it in future posts. Speaking of, (congratulations!) you’ve just won the This Is Not A House Best Comment of the Year (So Far) Award. There’s a half-eaten peach cobbler from my fridge headed your way once you send me your address.
The poster is very much authentic and very much (from what Google tells me) a rarity. I got it from a gallery in Chelsea. It is German, specifically from East Berlin, and the gallery owner told me it is from before the wall came down. Apparently the East had different marketing material for films than the rest of the country. I’ve done my best to find other posters from the same artist but to no avail. It’s pretty great. Along with Chisholm Gallery I would search other New York poster dealers–there are an alarming number of unique, vintage finds in the city. Try moviematerials.com and posteritati.com. But seriously Chisholm Gallery is fantastic.
MORE IMPORTANTLY: What are you doing about the carpet? Do you rent or own? Carpet is ultimate challenge for rental renovators. The Holy Grail, really. Most management companies won’t let you rip it up, and if it’s been there for ages (like most rentals) chances are a steam clean won’t change the aesthetic–so what do you do? Are you going to bring it up with your landlord, will you take an axe to it anyway, do you try to mask it with an area rug or will you buy temporary hair color from Hot Topix and make wash-away zebra patterns in the weave???
I must know!!
Love your place! And such a great use of space. Congrats on being featured on AT.
Hi Kim! Thank you so much. I love the stuff you’re doing on your blog, especially that ingenious Christmas tree topper made of straws you cooked up! Very inspiring. Can’t wait to see what else you’ve got!
Came to your blog via AT. What a great space you’ve created! It’s so warm and inviting. I currently live in Harlem (almost 5 yrs), but my husband and I are looking to move out of the city soon. I’m always on AT looking for inspiration and your apt definitely has a lot of it. Well done!
What a sweet thing to wake up to–thank you so much!
I lived in Harlem for 4 1/2 years and loved it there! The commute not so much. I found a lot of great things on trash day–an old schoolhouse bench, an armoire–and the big box stores up there were MY JAM. Have you ever been to El Mundo on the west side? Dirt cheap and you can do 100 different things with each item. That place is a gem.
Good luck on the move! Let me know how it all goes?
Where are you guys looking?
The El Mundo in the 140s or the one closer to Columbia? We live near the one in the 140s, but it closed last year? Yes, last year some time I believe. I never went to it! Every time I passed by, the stuff they’d put outside the store, in the bins, never looked too appealing. But now that I know, maybe I’ll take a trip to the one near Columbia. Thanks for the tip!
We’re looking to move to the DC area. But finding work out there has been tough. So we’re opening up our search now. We’re looking to start a family and we’d like to buy house that doesn’t break the bank. Unfortunately, NYC is just out of our reach in that respect.
The one in the 140s–I didn’t know it closed! RIP El Mundo; I will miss you. I don’t disagree–they had some incredibly tacky things, but I used to buy their framed art work, bust out the art (if you could even call it that), spray paint the frames and use them for other pieces. It was great. All in all it cost maybe ten bucks. Go with an open mind and just repeat: Paint Covers Everything. You’ll be fine. I guarantee you’ll come back with a new project to futz with. And if it doesn’t work out you only spent a few dollars!
DC’s great. I’ve had the opportunity to spend some time down there. I have some friend who just moved from Queens to Nyac and from what I understand the entire experience has been one long sticker shock. It’s so expensive out there!
You’re so right, paint *does* cover everything! That’s a good mantra to repeat. And having an open mind is key too.
Nyack is that expensive!? Wow, I wouldn’t have thought that given the distance from the city. That’s crazy. Yeah, we really love DC and I think we’d be able to find a nice place within our budget. It can be expensive in the District itself, but we’ve found some great homes within the metro area (northern VA and MD) that suits our pockets just fine 🙂
Good God I can’t wait to get have an entire house to tackle. You ma’am, have made me jealous.
Haha! Sorry! But you’ll get there I’m sure. And I’m positive your house will be absolutely fantastic! 🙂
Congrats on Apartment Therapy, You have a nice eye and Finn is an adorable MinPin! Looks like he has a lot of personality.
Thank you so much–I’m glad you like it! Finn’s very sweet but saying ‘he has a lot of personality’ is putting it mildly, as anyone from AT can attest after an afternoon of him jumping, rolling, licking and mugging for the camera. He definitely plays a major role in this blog!
Looking forward to reading more Evan! Hope you and Finn have been keeping warm and dry during Polar Vortex Part II!
Hi Evan –
Found you on AT this AM and I’m already obsessed! Amazing style and cool blog.
13 years on the UES and so many design challenges….where were you then!? lol
Just moved to the West Village, my place is coming together nicely but it definitely needs some of your finess. You should start consulting 🙂
Thank you so much for stopping by! ‘Design challenges’ is putting it mildly, right? I think the UES, to people who don’t live here, has a reputation of being very dry and characterless, but it’s really littered with all these old pre-war walk ups and small complexes that have been chopped up to make more room. That all said there are some very….specific?…apartments in this neighborhood. But that’s half the fun!
Congrats on the move, and, yes, I do consulting work! If you’re interested in discussing you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, otherwise please let me know about the progress of your place and how it evolves!
So glad I found this blog – a guy with good taste who can decorate on a budget – a rarity in the interior design/DIY blogosphere. It’s like you’re the new Daniel Kanter! Added this to my favourites and will be checking for updates a few times a week, can’t wait to see more.
WOW. Thank you! I know Daniel (and Max) so I’m incredibly flattered. That’s a huge compliment, and I hope I can do it justice! And I hope I can keep these insecurities at bay because I hate failing and I want everyone to love me. BUT THAT’S FOR A SEPARATE POST.
I’m so glad you found the blog, Connor! Maybe you’ll find something useful within my rambles. Fair warning: there may be some posts about my morning commute or what I ate for lunch or organizing my sock drawer, but stick with it and I promise there will be some interesting bits sprinkled throughout. But not about the sock drawer. If I do write about it that shit will be boring and I will make no apologies for it.
Have you considered joining Instagram so we can stalk you on multiple platforms?
I HAVE AND I AM. In the next month or so the website will (fingers crossed) get a facelift. Such plastic surgery will include a link to an Instagram account or a Facebook page…or maybe even Pintrest?!? I don’t know, I don’t know–I may go crazy and do all three–but rest assured if anyone wants to stalk me I will make it as easy as humanly possible! Who am I to stand in the way? Hopefully it will help generate some fun content, right?
i ended up here via your AT post and am so glad i did! your writing style is incredibly entertaining and i love your storytelling style. (re: the fiddle leaf fig post… i died). also really love your design style – i dream of owning an eames chair and swooned over your unique clocks. i can already tell i’ll be a regular reader!
BRIDGET. That’s incredibly kind of you–thank you! Believe it or not, that stuff is out there and totally affordable (otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to do it all myself). You just have to hunt and be resourceful. First and foremost, craigslist should be your new BFF. I’m on it all the time, and not always in my own area. There are great deals to be had all over the country and if you’re kindhearted and polite (and flash some leg) some people may even be willing to ship their goods. It’s like eBay but without everyone knowing about it.
So happy hunting and I’m so glad you’re reading the blog! Hear form you soon.
I started reading your blog after seeing your tour in AT and I have to say it is hilarious. Congratulations for your blog and your beautiful apartment. I just moved to a new place in Montreal and I literally have no furniture. After checking out your DIY’s and the stuff in your apt I feel more inspired to do something in mine.
I’ll make sure I check This Is Not a House often.
Hey Emma–congratulations on the new apartment! That’s so exciting. I think moving without furniture to start can be very liberating. Look at it this way: you’ve got a ton of work ahead of you but it’s a blank slate and it will be whatever you want it to be.
Let me know how it goes? Send some pictures when you can. And thanks for checking out the blog! I’m so stoked to get your note!!
I also found this blog via AT and have been combing through it with an attention to detail that my boyfriend describes as “obsessive” (he likes hyperbole). I also got my own place on the UES – a 1BR, no outdoor space, sadly – last August after living in Brooklyn for 3 years with a roommate. It’s been a weird transition but I’ve found I love getting to decorate my own space & have been diving into Houzz-inspired DIY projects. Here’s my latest: http://jenastelli.tumblr.com/post/73151060070/pipe-shelving-diy-how-to-tips
Can’t wait to see more of what you work on, UES neighbor! Nice blog.
How impressive is that shelf?! I think those pipe units are really stunning when done right (which it looks like yours was). I’m envious of anyone who wants to tackle making one because they appear simple but man-oh-man are they horrendous to assemble. And houzz is just the best, isn’t it?
Thank you so much for reading the blog, neighbor! Maybe we’ll bump into each other on the street one day? I’ll be the one hauling a wicker coffee table I found in the trash, down Third Ave towards paint store. You won’t be able to miss me, I promise.
PS Obsess away and don’t listen to that hyperbolic boyfriend of yours!
Like everyone else I just discovered your blog through AT and have to say I am digging it. Bookmarked you and everything 🙂 I moved to NYC from Baltimore about a year and a half ago and even though I have been an adult for many years I am currently decorating my first “grown up” apartment. Our style is kinda the same ( right now I’m half CB2/half mid century reproduction with some Ikea thrown in for good measure) and like you I have that coveted outdoor space that you kinda wanna spend money on but don’t really want to. Your blog has already given me some great ideas so thanks for the inspiration!!
That’s so exciting about your apartment! It sounds like you and I are having a very similar experience with our places right now.
But that outdoor space, man. It’s a bitch, I know. There are so many things you can do with it, none of which are very practical when you live in such a fickle rental market like Manhattan. When you’re ready, I would love to see what you end up doing with it. I’m still a bit undecided myself but I feel some upcycled planters in my future…
Bookmarked? What. Thank you thank you thank you! That’s very kind of you. I hope you like bad puns and long winded self reflections because, mister, that ⌘D just bought you A LOT OF THEM.
I love puns and long winded self reflections. It makes up a large portion of my day. 🙂
….I got here by way of Apartment Therapy. Love your place and I love this blog! I’ve got a little 450 sq. ft. one bedroom and I do decorate it to buffer me from the dangers outside…(I read your ex-relationship/Astrology post….I’m an Aquarius….lol.
I’ll be visiting often…….say “Hi” to Finn!
Hey Lucy! Thank you for stopping by and saying hi! I see a lot of my life experiences translated through the things around me, so though I hate to give him credit because the way my friend prefaced his comment was TACT-LESS he’s totally right.
Hope you’ll share some of what you’re doing in your place very soon! Thanks again!