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Interiors

By The Hudson River, Making a House into a Home

by Sabrina Smelko

I believe in the importance of making a house a home, whether you live in it for 12 months or 12 years. After all, your home is your safe place, and it should make you feel comfortable and at peace, no matter where you came from or where you’re going.

Project Manager is a self-professed farm-kid from Virginia who never planned (or aspired) to live in a big city — so when she first moved to New York, her priority was to find a hassle-free space that offered flexibility, convenience, proximity to the Hudson River, an in-unit washer-dryer and ample space for Mollie, her Golden-Doodle, to romp around. It was her first big move, and this home fit the criteria of striking a balance between city and country living, but she never imagined staying here for long.

Initially, Melissa found the cookie-cutter space lacked character, which left her feeling frustrated and uninspired. Further, as a renter, the inherent limitations to what she could do were stifling, but as time went on, she came to appreciate the resourcefulness and creativity it mustered up in her to make it work. Nearly five years later, she’s managed to work around these limitations and is still happy to call this darling space her home — for now. Having grown up in an old home in the country where everything possessed character, to Melissa, balancing the clean, simple lines that she loves with the relaxed and approachable character that she’s always known and needed is what creating a home is all about. While she’s well aware that it isn’t her forever home, and the furniture inside of it isn’t her forever furniture, she (and Mollie) are happy and at peace here for the time being. —

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"Clutter is unsettling to me, especially in the bedroom. It’s too easy to drop things into piles as I come and go, so I really make an effort to keep the space open and free of odds and ends," Melissa says of her minimalist bedroom.
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Just one of the many stops in Mollie the dog's daily lounging schedule/routine. "As soon as I leave in the morning she starts in the bathtub (I’ve yet to figure that one out) and then assumes her post in the window behind the couch, looking at the below passers-by. She mixes it up with a choice of sunny spots over the afternoon and then ends her afternoon lounging on the bed," Melissa says. "It’s tough to be Mollie!"
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A bright blue side table next to Melissa's bed.
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A collection of photos and feathers serves as a casual gallery wall in the bedroom.
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Melissa's bedside table.
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The dining area features a tall stack of books and a chalkboard wall.
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Oxalis and ivy make for a natural centerpiece.
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Melissa's collection of hats doubles as artwork in the entryway.
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Melissa's balcony was neither a want nor a need when she was initially apartment-hunting, but it quickly became one of her favorite features. "It makes for a great extension of the apartment and the sliding doors allow for an abundance of fresh air," she explains.
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The view from the kitchen into the living room.
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The living room is filled with light and soft furnishings that give the room a warm, homey feel.
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The living room's lucite table adds to the open, airy feel of the space.
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Melissa keeps a few colorful floor pillows on hand in case more guests stop by and need some comfy extra seating.
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A collection of artwork, sculpture and a vintage camera on the the living room credenza.
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The view from the kitchen looking towards the entryway.
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Melissa's home office.
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A colorful inspiration wall in Melissa's office.
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A type print adds a bit of visual interest next to the counter window.
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The floor plan of Melissa's home.

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