Thursday, April 16, 2009

Embrace the space

Despite the ill-timedness of being out of town just in between moving out and in, and the sometimes-shock of coming home to a place that is not yet home, I am learning to adjust. Fortuitously, it is the middle of Apartment Therapy's Spring 2009 Home Cure, as well as its Smallest Coolest home contest. Which means as I unpack and settle in I can find inspiration by peeking into other people's homes.

Having been a fan of AT for years now and having seen what wonders people can do with different spaces, I have often thought that I can live in under 500 square feet. But when I saw what 500 square feet looked like in person, I knew I couldn't. Of course, layout was an important, make-or-break factor. I went to see the cutest Craftsman studio cottage (the kind where it's three of the same units on either side of a driveway or courtyard), which was lovely on the outside and had the added benefits of no shared walls and room for gardening. But when I went inside, I found a closet that was more like a mini-room, half the size of the main living/sleeping area! The kitchen was so narrow that the fridge had to be relegated to the dining area, adding awkwardness to an already small space. Had the it been more of an open plan, the entire 450 s.f. studio would have had much more potential. If the layout reflects the time period, I really wonder how peeps back in the day lived!

I looked at a couple of studios, too, about 350 s.f. Good grief! Even unfurnished, I felt claustrophobic in them. And I knew that there's no way all my stuff would fit in there. Then I see beautiful, functional living spaces on AT that are less than that, and I am in utter awe. Then, I am humbled.

And then, I proceed to feel guilty about all the space I take up. Now that my things are getting put in their places and there aren't boxes taking up most of the floor, I am finding that there is a lot of room in my apartment -- which increases my guilt-- and that I probably could do with a smaller (and cheaper) place.



I could go crazy thinking and overthinking. But then I realized (all over again): the lease is signed, this place is mine, and -- darn it! -- I am going to enjoy it and make the most of it! So I will do as my post title says and Embrace the Space.  OffIgo!

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