my home

We Bought a House in San Francisco!

If you follow me on Instagram then you saw the news last month that we bought a house! Technically its just a flat (not a single family home) but we couldn’t be more excited. I made a list of goals when we were first married of things I really wanted to do over the next 10 years or so. The first thing on the list was: Buy a House in San Francisco. It was very unrealistic when I made that goal so the fact that we actually did it is thrilling. I cried when it became official. It is a beautiful 3 bedroom Victorian flat near Dolores Park. The apartment is 1700 square feet with a large kitchen, dining room and even a guest bedroom. It has beautiful original details and the apartment has been very well taken care of. We would like to eventually update the kitchen and bathroom and even knock out a wall or two but we are going to put that all on hold until our bank account recovers from that hefty down payment. The apartment is amazing but isn’t perfect. It doesn’t have a parking spot or a backyard and living on top of and below neighbors (even if they are nice) isn’t ideal. But the pros outweigh the cons a million times over so we feel really good about it. It is the perfect first home for us.

If you’ve been reading this blog any amount of time then you know we have a habit of living in small spaces. Our first apartment was a one bedroom apartment in San Francisco (pictures here, I cringe when I see these BTW.) After that we moved to a medium sized one bedroom apartment on Nob Hill, we had some children and they slept in a closet. After that we moved to a two bedroom apartment in Paris (Paris has cheaper housing than San Francisco so we upgraded!) Then last Spring we moved to our current 500 square foot apartment in the Mission District of San Francisco. We won’t move into the new house for a few months but home decor has been on my mind a lot. I hope you’ll indulge me a bit as I post about the new place and the projects we have in store. I’ve been waiting to own a house for so long I can’t believe its actually here. Here is a little peek of our long San Francisco hallway.

New House

Our 500 Sq Ft Apartment: Bedroom and Bathroom

This is the last of our apartment posts! Our bedroom is a sunroom that we turned into a bedroom. Besides sleeping we don’t spend too much time in it. Sometimes the kids will watch a movie on it during the day with the ipad but other than that we just use it when we go to sleep. In the warmer months we leave the door open to let fresh air in. Our backyard has a ton of trees so the room has a great little vibe.


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Our 500 Sq Ft Apartment: The Living Room and Hallway

As I mentioned before the living room is very small. It is essentially a small seating area. I discovered the magic of having books on the coffee table a few years ago and I haven’t gone back. Our goal when we think about our living room is to make it feel like a really great bookstore. We want to sit down and have lots of interesting new books and ideas right in front of us. Good design and art books can be expensive. Since the beginning of our marriage we’ve made it a priority to buy one every month or two. It’s one of those things that seems overwhelming and unreachable if you want to buy them all at once, but totally doable every month or so. Jamie from Furbish should get all the credit for this room. When she got here it felt totally unfinished. We moved our coffee table out last year because the chairs we had were too big for the space. When we replaced them with smaller chairs we just never brought the table back in. Jamie came in and created an official sitting space. She also made me buy plants, hang up the boob artwork on either side of the sofa and she brought a ton of pillows from her store. When she was done the space felt so much better!

Sources: Samtid Floor Lamp - Ikea, Boob Artwork – Udon Folded Zine from Gravel and Gold, Fiddle Fig Plant – Flower Market, Gold Urchin -Furbish, Blue Pillows – Furbish, Black+Beige Pillows – Furbish, Vintage Suzani Pillows – Furbish, Purple Pillows – In Bed, Tisdag White Lamp – Ikea, Rug – Vintage (we picked it up for cheap in Morocco.) LOVE figurine – Furbish

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Our 500 Sq Ft Apartment: The Kitchen

The best thing about our kitchen is the light. There is a big white wall next door and it reflects all the morning sun into our kitchen like a light box. It makes me so happy. One of the biggest challenges with the new apartment was figuring out where we were going to eat. The kitchen was decent sized (much bigger than our Parisian kitchen) but it wasn’t wide enough to fit a table. We considered a fold-down table or buying an extra small fridge to allow for more wall space. We eventually settled on a hacked Ikea kitchen island that was the perfect width and length. We bought some French Tolix stools and two perfectly fit under the bar while two sit stacked out of the way next to the fridge. It works great. At meal time we pull out the stools and can tuck them away when we want more space. It would have been ideal to have a whole table but as long as it is just us four this system works great.

There is quite a bit of storage and counter space in this kitchen. I had no problem storing all of my cakeplates! One funny thing that is hard to tell in the picture but the bed is actually quite close to the kitchen island. I always joke that if you spread out your arms you can touch where we eat and where we sleep at the same time. Ha! While our traditional dinner parties aren’t really an option we still entertain in small groups. In the summer we throw outdoor dinner parties in the garden. We also love throwing a party Sunday afternoons we call “Soup on the Stoop.” We make a big pot of soup and everybody eats out on the front steps. We live on a really fun street with a ton of foot traffic so it is fun to hang out and watch the people go by.

Sources: Tolix Stools – DWR, Kitchen Island – IKEA, Black + White Dishtowel -Furbish, English Tea Kettle – Amazon

photos by Heather Zweig for Oh Happy Day
assisted by Jessica Heywood

Our 500 Sq Ft Apartment: The Kids Room

The Master Bedroom is the biggest room in the whole house but we decided to give it to the kids. One of the problems we had to resolve with this apartment was the living room was really small. In past apartments that was the biggest room and the space we spent most of our time in. But in the new living room there was no place for a desk or toys. When we realized that we usually only spent time in our bedroom at night it made sense to give the bigger room to the kids so that they could also use it as a playroom. The only tricky part is the closet is off the master bedroom so we have to go to their room to change clothes. Luckily the apartment is so small, we don’t have to go far. We finished setting up the apartment so it was functional and had gotten most of the main pieces into place but I didn’t feel like it was finished. So I asked my friend Jaimie from Furbish (and the great blog i suwanee) to help me finish it. It was so nice to have someone with a fresh set of eyes and armed with pillows to come in to tell me to move art around and have opinions. She is lovely and so is her store. A special thanks to Heather Zweig who took the photos and is always so great to work with.

click through for all the photos and sources.