One of the hardest things about moving abroad was the uncertainty of where I would end up. Every year I was in London, I considered it my last–this meant I was investing very little in my personal life. Don’t get me wrong, I loved living in London, but I wanted a space of my own to call home. Every rental flat I lived in was amazing, but I only got them furnished, so I didn’t have to spend my resources on furniture. If you know anything about living in major cities across the UK or Europe, it’s that finding a furnished flat is pretty easy. They’re not more or less expensive than just getting an empty flat. You get the bare minimum as well, but it’s not terrible furniture.
So when I decided I would move to another city in America and settle down for a bit, I started researching new-to-me brands and took inventory of what I had. Honestly, I went from a dorm to furnished flats, so I had nothing in my name. What I did have were bits and pieces of my travels from prints, textiles, and trinkets, to ceramics.
When it came to apartment hunting in Chicago, I knew I wanted to find a place that wasn’t too modern. After doing the historic living life in London for almost a decade, it was what I loved more and found cozier. Chicago is no short of modern apartments, but they felt cold and dark. I now live in a Goth Revival 1920s building with several historical features. It has plenty of natural sunlight, is recently renovated, has a walk-in closet, and has white interiors. In addition, I wanted an open space to host parties!
Apartment Decor Theme
The first thing I did when I sorted out what apartment building I was moving into was take inventory of the things I had. A lot of the decor I collected throughout the years was from my travels, and as much as they meant a lot to me, I never had the opportunity to show them off until now. Most of my pieces are brightly hued and patterned. While assessing everything, I wanted to go for a Danish pastel theme that takes into account the patterns and pieces that I collected from all over the world.
A lot of my inspiration comes from my travels. I wanted to draw inspiration from the colorful houses of Notting Hill, the tile and stonework of Marrakech, textiles from my trips to India and Turkey, the landscapes of Madeira and Sabah, and so much more. Most of my process wasn’t conventional, but I did create a Pinterest board to help visualize my colorful abode. Here are some other resources I used:
- Lark and Linen’s blog offers tons of tips and advice to elevate your simple home into one that looks beautifully curated.
- Desenio has stunning posters in their studio collection and a gallery wall tool to help bring your ideas together cohesively.
- Pinterest has been the main source and I loved curating ideas for my gallery wall.
My Chicago Apartment Decor
You can check back here as I use this post to update my inspiration and latest decorating updates or follow me on Instagram and the hasthag #SDChicagoApartment for more behind the scenes and cheeky previews.