dreamy bedrooms

As my roommates and I get ready to pack up and start the apartment hunt all over again (the first showing of our little one is tomorrow afternoon), I'm starting to think about what's really important to me in choosing a new space. Ultimately, I want a place with lots of natural light, high-ish ceilings, and a big ass bedroom. I have visions of all white bedding, a flood of sunlight, and enough space for my record player and records to not have to push them out of the way whenever I want to get into my closet like I do now.

Here's my bedroom now:

Here's what's inspiring me. Thrifted treasures in pale colours, twinkle lights, minimal clutter (that's gonna take some work) and wood grain. Totally doable, totally beautiful:

photos from please sir

And my absolute favourite, Theodora Allen's photo of Tennessee Thomas. Dreamy white curtains and bedding, lots of sunlight, books--I want it!



If you lack the funds to re-vamp your own humble abode, why not at least make your cats happy? Set them with a nice set of hardwood chairs and table and top it off with a sleek aluminum kettle from Finnland!

just like a mini mall

You may think you like your flea markets rustic, cluttered, and bursting with unsung treasures.
But you were wrong.
What you really want is this:

thrifty decor: it's all in the family

To add on to Arden's post about paper decorations, I'm offering up some treats from the family archives.
The year: sometime in the mid-60's. The place: my grandparents' rec room in their house on Vancouver Island, BC.

My grandma, the irrepressible Louise, is standing in front of a collaborative collage undertaken by a troop of their friends the night before, smirking in the light of the morning after. Her and Grandaddy Dennis certainly knew how to party!

My dad says my grandma is the Queen of Thrift, a resourceful lady who filled the house with amazing bargains and steals. Her and my grandfather were children of the Depression, and it showed; repair trumped disposal every time, with the same couches and chairs getting recovered, reupholstered, re-everything whenever they got too shabby.

That, and they had the most amazing collection of Danish Modern furniture - a special obsession of mine.

Not to go all "recessionista" on you, but take a lesson from Dennis and Louise and seriously consider fixing that broken chair instead of kicking it to the curb. But if you really don't feel like repairing it - let us know where you're leaving it!


handmade decorations

In the spirit of celebration, this post is dedicated to pretty handmade decorations.

If you're hosting a party (maybe even one tonight for Valentine's day!), hanging paper cranes, pennants, hearts, or chains looks lovely and really warms up a space without much hard work at all. Dig back to your kindergarten crafting and try to reassemble some paper chains or snowflakes, but skip out on the messily crayon-coloured paper and replace it with some inexpensive coloured construction paper. Surprisingly, chains and decorations made with just plain white printer, graph, and lined paper look beautiful too.

I love this idea of hanging paper cranes from brightly coloured clothes hangers. A simple but gorgeous D.I.Y.:

photo from My Little Apartment

These pennants are lovely too, looks like they've used origami paper:

photo from Please Sir

Paper decorations can make for lovely place settings too, if you're hosting a sit-down dinner party. Here's what we made for New Year's Eve out of printer paper and construction paper scraps, pretty nifty, I'd say:

Happy Valentine's Day!


D.I.Y. pantry

I love food, especially when it comes in beautiful packaging. So do Ming and her friends, so much that they started up Le Fancy to show off all the lovely things they get to eat. Looking at that pretty blog, it comes as no surprise that here in Montreal, Ming and her room mates would want to showcase these kinds of items in their kitchen.

Using scrap pieces of wood and inexpensive brackets, the kids at the St Denis house built their own do-it-yourself pantry to maximize limited cupboard space and showcase their tasty delights.

Staggering the shelves fills up what would've been an empty wall to make it look warm, inviting, and hecka tasty too. The section of the wall they've painted with chalkboard paint is a nice touch.

I also like My Little Apartment's take on the D.I.Y. pantry: a freestanding version with scrap wood, found cinderblocks, and a cute patterned curtain to cover it up, filling an unused nook of the kitchen.


on hospitality

“Whether you live in a basement with the income of a ten-year-old girl or on a saffron farm in the south of Spain, the spirit of hospitality is the same.”
- Amy Sedaris

notes of wisdom from my girl Amy from her book, I LIKE YOU on hospitality under the influence and other necessary information too. Her she is in her awe-inspiring abode.

frame clusters

I've started to work on a frame cluster wall in the living room of my teeny Plateau apartment. So far it's a little patchy and awkward, but one thrift store trip at a time I'm building up a real stunner.

Here's what I've got so far:

Here's what I'm dreaming of:

photos by todd selby

I'll keep you posted.

book storage

Because books make rooms beautiful.

photo by todd selby

photo by arden wray

Speaking of temporary living conditions: the owner of the legendary Paris bookstore Shakespeare and Company (above) will apparently let a handful of people at a time live in the store for a few days. All one has to do is present him with a short autobiography so he can, presumably, decide if you're worthy. I don't think I could sleep, surrounded by such literary majesty.

welcome home.

Because the words "student apartment" shouldn't be synonymous with old pizza boxes,

because what we lack in funds we make up for in enthusiasm,

because good interior design should make it hard to leave,

we bring you SOMETHING BORROWED: a celebration of creative apartments.
Here in Montreal, where the rent is (relatively) cheap and students abound, apartment hunting feels like a treasure hunt.
We're always looking for that ideal apartment, that fantasy space where the cheapest of rent and the brightest of natural light and the warmest of radiators come together in a vortex of comfort and convenience.
We may not have found it yet, but we know it's out there.

In other words, we move around a lot.

Lazy student rationale dictates that this nomadic life put a damper on decor.
Watch this space for inspirational (and aspirational) decor from leased space in Montreal and beyond.

SOMETHING BORROWED: your internet home about homes.

photo by arden wray