Name: Mona Tavakoli, Beau Ritten, and cats Minnow and Sushi
Location: Central District — Seattle, Washington
Size: 700 square feet
Years lived in: 2 years, renting
Make your way up the stairs to Mona and Beau's converted top-floor apartment in the heart of the Emerald City, and you can feel the eclectic vibes seeping into the landing. The elongated cat statue staring at you on your way in could be playing a large part. Needless to say, their pad is very cool.
Once you cross the threshold into the living space, you are greeted by a big beautiful stained glass window overlooking the street. The neighborhood's other houses are masked by the trees, so as you gaze through the stained glass, you are whisked away to a chateau in France. It's one of Mona's favorite elements "[T]he stained glass window... is pretty special." The other prominent feature is the amount of natural light throughout the apartment that helps open up the space.
You get the sense that Mona and Beau are quite comfortable in each other's space, as their individual tastes and interests intertwine and mix to form one completely eclectic identity to their apartment. Nostalgia is tastefully peppered throughout the apartment, but never pushed to the limits. This is best exemplified by the inherited jackalope protecting the living room, and the F-Zero Super Nintendo cartridge donning the mantel over the TV.
Their sun deck is a sort of de facto living space, seeing as they spend a large majority of their time outside with their cacti and succulent collection, as well as their five-gallon vegetable garden. They have undoubtedly made the most of their cozy space, illustrating that thrift and careful curation hold more intrinsic value than brand names and "showroom" appeal.
Our Style: A mish-mash of Northwest, Southwest, mid-century, and curated thrift store.
Inspiration: Small town thrift shops, nurseries, deserts, the Pacific Northwest, grandma's house, and those crazy beautiful loft spaces you see floating around Pinterest.
Favorite Element: Our deck is so lovely to hang out on in the summer! It gets drenched in sun so we'll grow veggies in five-gallon buckets and put our succulent and cacti collection out on it. We hang out there every evening with the cats and grill and have dinner. It's definitely the ultimate chill zone. Also, the stained glass window in the living room is pretty special.
Biggest Challenge: Our bathroom is the size of a shoebox and has no windows or storage space. Additionally, the lack of closet space in the apartment poses a challenge, but if you look at it glass half-full, it does prevent us from buying and being weighed down with too much stuff!
What Friends Say: You have so much light! And so many plants! My parents recently called it an "artists' home."
Biggest Embarrassment: The house from the outside is, by far, the ugliest one on the block. At night, it looks totally haunted.
Proudest DIY: The record case! We're in the process of designing and building a bigger one to accommodate our ever-growing collection of records.
Biggest Indulgence: The Pendleton Chief Joseph blanket and KitchenAid mixer
Best Advice: Use trendy decor stores like West Elm, CB2, etc. as a "mood board" for your home and then head out to thrift stores, antique shops, and yard sales to find comparable but much more interesting and eclectic pieces on the cheap! Homes that look like showrooms lack warmth and depth, two elements a truly comfortable home should encompass. Also, when it doubt, put a plant on it.
Dream Sources: Homestead Seattle, Home Union, Coming Soon NYC, Schoolhouse Electric, Amsterdam Modern, Heath Ceramics, Modernica, Cactus King (Houston), and Sunset Nursery (LA).
Sofa – Craigslist
Cesca Chairs – Thrift
Orange Velvet Chair – World Market (no longer for sale)
Marble Top Side Table — Thrift
TV Stand – DIY
Record Case – DIY
Mid-century Cylindrical Speakers – Thrift
Stained Glass Window – Came with apartment
Mid-century Modern Coffee Table – Target
Round Gray Ottoman – Target
Black and White Rug – Urban Outfitters (no longer for sale)
Kilim Rug (under TV stand) – Yard sale
Sheepskin Rug — IKEA
Cat Tree – Mudbay/DIY
Chief Joseph Blanket – Pendleton
Record Player – Pro-Ject
Record Receiver — Thrift
Tape Player — Thrift
Shelves – DIY
Couch Throw Pillows – IKEA and Target
Chest — Thrift
Blue Storage Console – Side of the road
Bookcase – IKEA
Circle Mirror - Thrift
Bull Horns – Thrift
Jackalope – Inherited
Wooden Naked Lady – Fremont Vintage Mall
Hippo Planter – Thrift
Lady Head Planter – Thrift
Mini Pink Vase – IKEA
Abstract Black and White Planter – Fremont Sunday Market
Cat Head Sage and Palo Santo Holder – Thrift
Coasters – West Elm
Candle – Boy Smells
DINING ROOM / KITCHEN
Butcher Block Dining Table – Thrift
Bar Stools – Fixtures from an old Levi's shop concept
Shelf – DIY
Fruit Bowl – Thrift
Dish Set – Vintage from Beau's mom
KitchenAid Mixer — KitchenAid
Kit Cat Clock – Yard sale
Eucalyptus Vase – Thrift
Plant Stand – IKEA (no longer for sale)
Plant Stool – Thrift
Armoire – Came with the apartment
Shelves – DIY
Drawer – IKEA
Clothing Racks – IKEA
Bed Side Tables – Thrift
Dry Lavender Vase – Homestead Seattle
Desk – IKEA
Ottoman – Target
White Vase – West Elm
Wavy Mirrors – IKEA (no longer for sale)
Bedding – Urban Outfitters
Blanket – West Elm (no longer for sale)
Faux Fur Pillow – Target