Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Operation Decoration

My boyfriend and I just signed the lease on our first apartment! It's a gorgeous, spacious condo in one of my favorite neighborhoods right across the street from his work and I am SO excited. Excited to move in with my boyfriend, take the next step, blah blah blah, sure, but mostly I'm excited to decorate! (Sorry, Nick.)

You see, the room I currently inhabit is the same one I've had since I was born, and the same one that hasn't been redecorated since I was 13 (yes, my walls are still covered in Steven Madden ads). My freshman year of college, I moved into the dorms with three female roommates (and when I say "three female roommates," I mean, "three evil harpies"), but after my self-esteem was thoroughly drained, I moved back home and decided I was never going to leave. I did end up going to Hawaii for a semester with my brother and my boyfriend, but we lived in a condo that didn't even allow us to straighten a picture frame. So yeah, the interior decorating of my life has been stagnant for ten years (that sentence came out really intense, whoa).

Which is why I've forsaken my textbooks (I'm sure my professors will understand), and spent my first month's rent on a stack of design magazines as tall as I am. Blogs about interior design and art have suddenly become relevant and interesting to me, and Etsy is my new BFF.

I love funky, eclectic decor and pop art (Dharma's apartment on Dharma & Greg was and is my vision of perfection), so of course I had to have these Keith Haring wall decals I saw on Kingdom of Style:

$18, here.

And, again something I saw on the Kingdom (I swear I don't buy everything they tell me to, although if I did I would be exceptionally chic...and poor), this reproduction of a British WWII-era poster that was hung in the streets and meant to make the populace feel better during those pesky air raids:

I plan to hang it near my front door to make my friends feel better for having to leave my cozy apartment and head out into the rain.
About $7, here.

A Cup of Jo is another blog with which I've been borderline obsessed as I prepare for Operation Decoration. I've liked the site for a long time, but without my own place to decorate, Joanna's posts about chic design and affordable art had sadly been like those articles in US Weekly about how to get Jessica Simpson's ass: interesting and entertaining, yes, but not a reality in my life. Now, however, I've been scouring her archives with great delight. Homegirl's got maaaaaddd taste!

For example, this print:

$30, here.

And check out the article she wrote about affordable art. Lord knows I'm gonna sheep it up and buy some of her suggestions.

Over in Etsyland, my favorite find so far is this pillow, which will probably cause my mom to never visit me, but come on, it's our dear leader and Jesus, together at last!:

I know you're judging me right now, but I ask you to look deep inside your heart and admit it: you've never seen anything this cool.
$24, here.

The place is ours in a couple weeks, so expect lots of pictures and a whole new realm of Daddy Likey dedicated to design. In the meantime, please give a shout-out to your favorite design blogs, magazines, websites, etc. (don't be shy to plug your own!) in the comments section, or share your favorite sites/stores for rad home goods. Filling my walls shall be a collaborative effort!


Anonymous said...

Oh congratulations!!! I've been living with my other half for about 7 or 8 years and it's fun!!! You guys look perfect together. I feel all warm and fuzzy inside for you guys right now =)

Anonymous said...

If you haven't already, be sure and check out www.designspongeonline.com. Great for inspiration!

And if you like the Keith Haring wall art, check out more designs at www.whatisblik.com

Have fun!

Poochie said...

Love the WWII poster. Domino's blog is great and I obsess the magazine and Blueprint. Check out all of the Galleries they have online.

I ended up buying the "For Like Ever" poster from Village (http://www.dominomag.com/magazine/2007/04/you_went_nuts?slide=32) at www.vllg.com


It's HUGE!

Of course Target and Crate and Barrel rock. And one of my best things was getting a really pricy, intricate fabric and stretching it over an artist canvas to hang on the wall. My cheap way to imitatate fabric panels.

Have fun!

P.S. I also like the blog Pretty in Blue. I have a link on my site if you don't have that already.

Anonymous said...

apartment therapy rocks! http://chicago.apartmenttherapy.com

Decorating, what fun! I'll haunt this blog for sure

Unknown said...

I just ran across this post

since threadless rocks, perhaps their wall decor will be just as fun and quirky...

Cate said...

WINONA i'm so excited for you! i just did that last year and it is hard and fun and wonderful (just like relationships! (sorry, i couldn't resist)). good luck to you, and you've already found my favorite place--etsy.com. also, home goods often has kitchsy fun things (i found a small childrens bicycle...yeah at homegoods...that i hung on the wall, people think it's stupid but i call AWESOME) as does TJ Maxx. also, call me crazy, but some of the childrens posters from toys 'r' us are so fun and colorful, i just can't resist. good luck!

Anonymous said...

I write for www.housebible.com so check it out! (well, I will be "writing" for it again when I get my sh!t together....where are those damn exhibition flyers...mmm......)

Dressed and Pressed said...

Excellent news on the move! That painting of Dubya and the other guy? The bloke would totally buy that. He is a sucker for kitshy tat. Luckily, we don't live together... yet.

Anne At Large said...

Congrats on the new place, and also I second the love for Apartment Therapy. Their color contest is going on right now and it is basically an excuse to peek in people's homes and get inspired! Also I totally have that damn WWII poster if you want it, I'm sick of seeing it all over.

Caro said...

I think my dream apartment is completely extracted from an Anthropologie catalog, so I'm not sure if you want my tips. (but do check out the colorful and cute latte bowls that are $4 each). And for more Anthro type stuff try http://www.brocadehome.com/bh/index.jsp.

Your choices are cute but can you live with that much irony??

Anonymous said...

Congratulations Winona! I really like http://sfgirlbybay.blogspot.com/ Plus most of her links are about decorating so there's lots of cool info and pictures to find there.

Mélanie said...

You must be very excited ...

Catie said...

If you like mid-century furniture and trinkets like I do, try Lounge Lizards on Hawthorne (12th or 13th on SE Hawthorne, I think). Everything is vintage and second hand, and their staff is sooo great. Free delivery too!

Peajai said...

Congratulations on your first place, Winona!

I don't know if you're into going to garage sales but I would say hit them, hard! I have so many different rooms at my house I would have gone broke a long time ago trying to decorate them with all brand new stuff. Especially the art and posters,
I get the most compliments on them and they are all from garage sales. Look in the paper starting on Thursday and map a route before you head out and you're sure to find something good.

WendyB said...

That pillow is highlarious!

LallaLydia said...

congrats again! I think Poochie has a great idea about the fabric panels...does Nick get any say in the design scheme? Or will you put a discrete little double-tailed mermaid somewhere in a corner as an ode to his current occupation? ;) I can't wait to see the new place!

Blythe said...

Hey Winona,

I've been a fan of Daddy Likey for awhile but I'm generally too shy to comment. I couldn't resist this time, though.

Congrats on your first apartment! You are going to have SO much fun. I moved into my first studio in June and am having a blast making it pretty (plus the occasional migraine).

Everyone else's recommendations are great. I would also suggest checking out CB2 and West Elm. You might also like the Curiosity Shoppe (http://www.curiosityshoppeonline.com").

Being your typical 22-year-old, design mags (and lots of design blogs, however fabulous) are just eye candy for me...my big challenge has been - how to do Design Within Reach on an Ikea budget? I try to feature fun and funky ideas that are actually affordable, in addition to the things that you can only dream about. Plus I do a lot of griping on my tiny apartment woes (yay!).

Anyways, if you're interested in checking it out despite this comment's MAJOR long-windedness (oops) just click on my name and follow the link to "ma vie en rose"

Best of luck!

la petite fashionista said...

Ah i feel your decorating pain! I've always lived at home and was so anxious to move into a dorm this year to have a "space of my own" to decorate. unfortunately, theres not even enough room for a piece of furniture and I cant even paint the walls.. :/ congrats on the apt!

Anonymous said...

ridiculous pillow, haha. the other day i was doodling on the desk during my 7:30-in-the-morning US history class and i drew a picture of george dubya and jesus holding hands inside a big heart. it was cute!
most of the furniture in my room is from ikea.. i really like super bright walls and then white furniture. i have these cool mirrors up on my wall that are like squares of frosted glass with mirrored circles in the middle.
also i think you could order some prints off of deviantart.com, because some people have really cool things.. i like http://mbym.deviantart.com/gallery/

mavieenrose said...

I thought of two fun art shops you might like...most things are around $20-30 on both.

Little Paper Planes:

Thumbtack Press:

Sassy Cas said...

Check out garage sales, thrift stores, and stores like TJ Maxx, Ross and other similiar retail establishments.

renvieannemo said...

Congratulations :)
It's a huge step, I just made a year with living with my boyfriend of almost two years and boy was it a HUGE transition but the decorating part that was our favorite part, he did most of it though LOL I just liked buying and buying hehe. Take care :)

christine said...

aww congrats! I am jealous, seeing as how I'm already married yet somehow we ended up back home with my rents. I can't wait to have my own place again, since we have always been too broke to properly decorate! Some blogs I love are desire to inspire and absolutely beautiful things. Magazines I love are Elle Deco (british), Livingetc, Home & Garden (british), Better Homes & Gardens, and of course Ikea always has great ideas!

Londyn said...

I love the red "Calm" picture. What a steal for $7.

Good luck with moving! We can definitely be cyber-moving buddies :)

NWRMK said...


I think I must have had those harpies' mothers for some of my roommates. Who knew they spawned?

Bet your current "landlord" is having wonderful daydreams about what to do with the newly acquired extra room.

Do NOT let Lallalydia near your closet mirrors!

renvieannemo said...

It's a huge transition, I'm surprise me and my boyfriend made it to a year of living together lol, the first few months, wait I lied until now, we're still at each other's throats for the dumbest things LOL. But we love each other haha :)

Again, good luck ;)

Joanna Goddard said...

you are so fabulous! it will be fun to move in together; he is a really lucky guy. and thank you for the very kind words about my blog; you are such a doll! xoxojoanna

Raf M said...

The 'Calm' poster's visual theme is very much like one of Nike's Man-U campaign. Hermmm...
Glass art and Decorating ideas

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Kelly said...

I realize this is like two years after this post was originally written, but I just have to say that I love The Selby (theselby.com) for inspiration for crazy and creative living spaces.

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