my home

Since moving up to Portland, ME in September of last year, I’ve been on a pretty serious mission to turn this rented apartment of mine into a home. It’s been a long time since I’ve had the time to do something like this… not to mention the freedom. I’ve been painting, arranging, weeding, and I’ve been on a pretty intense DIY streak! I have no doubt that I’ll continue to create little pieces for the apartment… to perfect the layout, to rearrange, etc. But for now, I’m feeling pretty well settled. I absolutely love this apartment and a smile creeps across my face every time I open the front door and walk in. This apartment is all me. It has my personality and my style stamped in every little corner. It is with great pleasure that I now share it with you! I’ll try to keep the commentary to a minimum but sometimes I just can’t help myself! I’ll also give you info on all of the artwork. Most of the pieces are from various Clarabella gallery shows. Enjoy!

[Note: This was originally posted on Clarabella back in November. I couldn’t help but share it here as well!]

Living Room Before:

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Living Room After:


Artwork by Amaru Chiza. “Abstraction 22 x 28”. This is the first piece of art I ever bought for myself back in 2001. I found it toward the end of the day along the artwalk on West Broadway. The artist gave me a ‘deal’ since I was to be his last sale of the day. I’ve brought it from place to place ever since. The chair is the one custom created for the shop. I got SO many inquiries about this chair in the 2 years that the shop was open. I will never part with it. The console/breakfront used to be the front counter at the shop, but actually originally came from my mom and step-dad’s old house. I’m told they purchased it in Nantucket.

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I purchased the mirror in the left photo at Bob’s Thrift Shop on Houston @ Bowery with an ex. Thankfully it came with me for the breakup! the photos are of my mom’s family. The mirror in the right photo is actually one that I’m ‘looking after’ for my friend Josephine. The ‘C’ is from the Clarabella front window. The trunk style boxes were purchased at HomeGoods in South Portland and house my craft supplies and all of my jewelry-making tools and materials.


Someday, there will be a couch here and this lovely chair will be in one of the corners. For now, however, it is a fine place to cuddle up to watch a movie.

This is actually an outdoor dining set that was purchased with the deck in mind. It comes from Paris Farmer’s Union thanks to a certain special someone;). Since Fall and Winter don’t encourage outdoor dining, I’ve brought it indoors. It’ll head back outside once weather allows in the Spring.
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Artwork by Bailey Saliwanchik. “Red”. I arranged the books on the bookshelf according to color, something I’d seen on various design sites. Not the most practical set up if I ever want to find something, but it still looks nice! The 2 books in a box are from my book-binding phase. Maybe someday I’ll get back into that one! The lamp on the right was purchased at HomeGoods in South Portland. The hooks are old shop hooks placed over decorative paper. The mirror was brought back from Ireland on a trip that my sister L and I took back in 2000.

Kitchen Before:

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Kitchen After:


Artwork: Left, framed Indian Rupee. Given to me by my friend Krishan for our college graduation. Right, by Wendy Newcomb. Landscapes. Given to me by my mom and step-dad. Wendy is a local artist and a family friend.

I’m fairly certain that the little French sign was given to me by Mom quite a while ago. The blue bottle came from the Christmas Tree Shop, of all places. The big ol’ shoe stand on the left was a gift from my friend Nicole Gagne (Leoworks – Jewelry designer) for the shop.
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Artwork by Shaun Kardinal. “7th and Pine” From the second ever Clarabella art show. I now consider Shaun a great friend. He’s an incredible artist. Creative and caring. Hi Shaun!

Couldn’t resist sharing the little kitchen setup… I love my royal blue tea kettle. The sugar and flour cannisters and the little sugar bowl all came from IKEA. The utensil holder is something I’ve had for years.


Bathroom Before / After: (not much done in here yet…)
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Artwork by Matthew Doubek. Print from Charmingwall. “E is for Elephant”. The print is from Matt’s show at Clarabella… the last show before closing. Charmingwall is a favorite NY gallery located in the West Village. I was planning on painting, but honestly just got tired. It’ll be a slightly softer white. I did put the hooks up for the towels and removed the towel bar.

Bedroom Before:

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Bedroom After:


Artwork by Wayne Wilkinsom. Left – “Summer Solstice”, Right – “Grace Upon Grace”. Both pieces were purchased back in 2006 and frame at Chelsea Frames back in 2007. I found Wayne on Etsy. Incredibly affordable artwork and just my style. I just put this comforter cover on the other day. I’ve had it for years and it miraculously matches the bedroom perfectly. Maybe a little too perfectly? It will be interchanged with my multi-colored floral cover.
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Artwork by Ben Chang. “Untitled” I thought this photo was perfect for the ‘dressing area’. I kept one of the dress forms from the shop and use it for hats and various sweaters, scarves and bags depending what is discarded at the end of a day. The shelves holding jeans and sweatshirts came from a fabulous little antique shop out in Naples called Wild Plum. The handbags wall hangers are from a site called Simply Sarah. I can’t recommend these enough. What a fantastic and chic way to organize and show off your handbags!!

Artwork by Marianne Goldin. “Jane” This piece is from Marianne’s show back in the Fall of 2008. She is an incredibly talented Seattle based Illustrator. You’ve already seen the newly painted dresser.
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The mirror on the left is the one from Clarabella. I loooove it. I got it at Pottery Barn. I’m not sure that they sell the exact one anymore, but here is one that’s close. I got nearly as many inquiries about the mirror as I did about the chair. The mirrors on the right are both from West Elm.


Artwork by Matthew Doubek. “W is for Worm” From Clarabella’s very last art show.
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Artwork by Amanda Kavanagh. Left – “Tiny Winter #11”, Right – iPhone sketches. Amanda had artwork on display at Clarabella from January through June of this year. I fell in love with her style as did many of my customers. She gave me the tiny piece on the left as a thank you and also, incredibly, the prints on the right. I have 4 in total – all frames are from IKEA.
These shelves were made by my dad (thanks pop!) and the bins were made by me out of decorative paper, paint tape and old moving boxes… See the DIY post here.

[Note: very likely that I’ll be migrating a few of the DIY posts over from Clarabella as well. Stay tuned!]


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