Before Jordan Carlson moved from Seattle to New York to pursue a graphic design degree at Parsons, she had a small business staging houses for the real estate market. She’d bring furnishings and accessories into empty spaces to create an environment that would allow buyers to envision themselves living there. Jordan’s put that skill for crafting a welcoming environment to good use in this tiny Williamsburg railroad apartment. It’s proved to be such a welcoming space that Jordan has a regular flow of visitors. Once her book club even met here without her! Thanks, Jordan & Tosh! And thanks to for contributing the first two images! — Amy A.
Image above: I like to “mark” significant events or stages of life with artwork or other tangible treasures (this is something I picked up from my parents, who do this for most of their anniversaries). I immediately fell in love with this painting; there’s something about this intimate moment being blown up to such a large scale. I became friends with the artist, , via a mutual friend, and a few years later, when I knew major life transitions were ahead, I ed her to see if the painting was still available. It speaks to me of new beginnings and is a beautiful, daily reminder.
Image above: My finest DIY moment: the flat file coffee table. I’ve wanted a flat file for YEARS and have scoured Craigslist and second-hand places. With my move here, I finally took the plunge. I bought it at in Williamsburg and with my mom’s help, lugged it up to my third-floor apartment, stripped the paint and semi-sealed it myself, and got a friend to help me add the wheels. It’s functional, beautiful and, in my opinion, adds the perfect contrast to my blue velvet camelback couch.
CLICK HERE for more of Jordan’s Williamsburg apartment!
Image above: Speaking of the couch, that’s one of my favorite Craigslist finds: I purchased it for $100 from a twenty-something guy who decided it just wasn’t his style. Surprise. Before being in his possession, it sat unused in his parents’ formal living room for a couple decades and was in amazing condition. I couldn’t give him my check fast enough. My parents acquired the Turkish rug almost forty years ago, and as my mom likes to tell, my dad bartered with the seller, giving him a reel-to-reel tape deck in exchange (wonder if his kids still have that?!). It was a regular feature in my childhood home, and somehow I weaseled it away from them a decade ago. I love that it has a pattern but is still neutral.
Image above: This cart/table was salvaged from the backyard of my parents’ rental unit. The tenant left it there after moving, rusted and in bad shape; I asked if I could have it. My friend John tackled that puppy with steel wool and major elbow grease. Viola! Lampshade from Urban Outfitters.
Image above: I live in a railroad apartment, where one room leads to another. Therefore, there are doors that enter from the hall on both ends, one into the kitchen, and one into the space I use as a living room. When I was shown the apartment, the entry was into the kitchen, the other door, completely sealed shut. The front room was intended as the bedroom, the middle room as the common/living room, and then finally, the kitchen. I quickly realized I would switch these two rooms, as having a space where people could gather was a high value for my home, and that front room was more conducive to this set up. The landlord agreed to unseal the door. I love my set up. Sure, it means folks have to walk through my bedroom/office space, but I haven’t found that to be a problem.
Image above: Tosh claiming her space.