One of my favorite features about this apartment is that it has a coat closet. You don't know how useful a coat closet is until you live without one for three years. Our previous house in South Jersey was over a hundred years old and only had two closets in the entire house, neither of which was quiiiiite deep enough to close the door on a modern hanger.
This apartment has a whole bunch of closets, one in every room! The coat closet is enormous. So enormous I'm hiding the base of my expensive dining table, three sofa cushions and a couple of boxes I haven't unpacked yet in there, behind all the coats. Its even got ANOTHER closet hidden behind it. (Its actually an uninsulated attic type storage space.)
Another thing I like about this apartment is that it actually has a foyer! In our old house, the front door opened directly into the living room, with no place to put keys, hang a coat, etc. So this spacious foyer is lovely. It also separates the bedroom side of the apartment from the living side of the apartment.
Here's a view of the foyer from the living room.
From the bedroom side:
The Botero painting replaced a travel poster of Palisades Park that broke. The day I put up the Botero, my two year old stood in front of it for a few minutes, then turned to me and cheerily announced, "picture of Mama!" As you can see, the naked lady has a rather large posterior. And not so great hair. Thanks, kid.
The lamp shade was one of my first crafty projects when we moved in. I saw a similar lampshade on lampsplus.com for $78 plus shipping. I loved it, but the Mister was less than pleased at the thought of me buying a lamp shade that cost almost $100 with shipping. So, I found a similar fabric on fabric.com, ordered a new $11 lamp shade, and recovered it myself. I ordered a new drum shade because the old one was slanted, and it is difficult to evenly apply a pattern fabric to a slanted shade.
It came out alright, but I am contemplating redoing it so that the edges are more neatly applied. When the light is on you see the ragged edges on the inside. Janell of Isabella and Max Rooms has a great tutorial and I think I will probably try it.
This is the view when you walk in the door to the apartment.
The chair was one of our old dining set. I've painted and recovered them and they live in various spots around the house. Its nice to have a place to sit down and put on shoes, pile bookbags on the way out in the morning, etc.
I had a hard time figuring out what to do with this space. There were a bunch of things on the wall already---I think its an ancient doorbell, and a button thingy. Or perhaps they are an intercom? I have no idea. Regardless, the ugly box and wall nipple needed to be disguised.
The one ledge is mounted just above the button and its no longer a focal point. There is a picture in front of the box on the upper ledge, so its hidden from view now.
Another idea I've been toying with replacing the Botero with a cardboard moosehead inside an antique frame:
(available here and here)
I know, antlers are sooooo 2009....but a cardboard moose seems cheeky and ironic instead of trendy and cliched, right?
*edited to add links for the moosehead