My first place, shared with my husband, was a small city condo downtown Chicago. The best aspect of our condo was its location. We were on Southport Avenue, which was a few blocks west of Wrigley Field and it had a ton of shops, restaurants, and bars within walking distance, and easy access to public transportation.
But, at my ripe old age of 28 (ha!) I decided I had enough. I did not like sharing walls with freshly graduated college students!!! I was discussing - ok, more like complaining about - these shared walls with my husband one night when he surprisingly said - after only about three years in the space - "let's move!" This was in 2008 and the housing market was starting its swift descent. Rather than chase the market down, we wanted to make sure the space was priced right and staged to sell.
Our strategy worked; we had a contract in less than ten days for near asking price and closed on the place within a month! Good news: we were out. Bad news: we had no place to go! But that is a story for another day........
These are the pictures I took for the listing on the MLS.
You entered the condo into a hallway. Straight ahead of you was the little nook in the picture above with the book shelves.
We added the shelves, which were from Ikea, so that we could display travel pictures, added bowls for keys and change, and baskets for hats, scarves, dog leash, etc. Off to the right was the "great room." The first think that struck me about this condo when we were house hunting was the wall of windows and crown molding:
We didn't want furniture competing with the windows, so we chose the couch because of its low profile and used a glass coffee table to keep the space light and bright.
We had to keep our china cabinet in the "living room space" because, as you will see, there wasn't enough room in the dining area.
That didn't matter much to me so long as I had a space to display our china and crystal (I was a newly wed after all) and my grandma's silver platter, which was a wedding gift.
I still have the same display in my china cabinet today. I always go back to this arrangement because I can't help it - I like simplicity.
Behind the living area was the dining space and kitchen:
The kitchen was my least favorite part of the condo. Since we were only there three years, it didn't make much sense monetarily to make any changes. We added modern hardware and under the cabinet lighting.
I did love the dining area, though. It was small, but I just loved having dinner there and observing what was happening on the streets below. I liked staring out those windows. I liked it so much, in fact, that I decided to add not one, but two mirrors to reflect the outdoors and windows.
When we first moved in, we hung a large Chicago print that my husband owned behind the table. Here is the space set for Mothers Day:
...and here it is all set up for my sisters bachelorette party:
I think the change to the mirrors was a wise one. In fact, the people who bought our place wrote the mirrors into the contract! My husband, who was also my real estate agent, said ok!!! To this day, I still remind him how much I want those mirrors back - we purchased them at Bombay but the company was already out of business by the time we sold our condo!!
...moving onto the office....
....it was a nice size second bedroom by city standards....
I liked to use our vacation photos in our spaces. These are from our honeymoon in Hawaii.....
In the back of the condo, down a long long hallway, was our master:
I always have and always will like white bedding so that I can change the accent color and accessories as I please...
Looking back, there are definitely changes I would make to these spaces. However, this was my first home that I had the opportunity to decorate and I learned a lot in the process! I wouldn't pass on the opportunity to live in the city if I had to do it all again!
What do you miss about your first place?
Thanks for stopping by! In the next few days, I will also be adding a home tour of our existing home, so stop back on over.
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Linking at: Wow Us Wednesday / Clean and Scentscible / Tutorials Tips and Tidbits / Link Up With Me, Liz Marie / Inspiration Gallery / Flaunt it Friday / My Romantic Home / Jennifer Rizzo