This weekend’s Get the Look Decor is inspired by Katherine and Jem’s two bedroom apartment in the Humbolt Park neighborhood of Chicago. Filled with bold patterns and textures, the couple, along with their two cats and dog, have decorated their home with vintage treasures collected from estate sales and flea markets.
For the full tour of Katherine and Jem’s apartment, check out their house tour over at Apartment Therapy. Stop by Katherine’s vintage shop backgarage for classic designs from the 1960s, ’70s and ’80s and visit her blog for design inspiration to create your own modern nest.
Describe your home decorating style.
1970s bohemian meets early ’80s Scandinavian. I like classic lines, bold colors, and the contrast between natural textiles and synthetic materials.
Did you decide to decorate in this style or was there an evolution to your decorating process?
Definitely an evolution. Like a lot of thrifters, I started out on the kitsch side (Haeger fawn planters, paint-by-number art). I decorated with things that were a little more common. As I continue to deal vintage as a part-time career, I’m digging deeper and traveling farther to find unique pieces. Slowly I’ve amassed better quality stuff and defined my style. No more green Haeger pottery! Now I’m into Danish plastic.
What inspires you when it comes to decorating?
The bold patterns of the late ’60s and early ’70s. Well-made Scandinavian furniture and housewares. Bohemian interiors. California agrarian futurism. Eero Saarinen’s Miller House in Columbus, Indiana. Mid-century airport lounges.
Where are your favorite places to shop for home items?
I run a flea market here in Chicago called The Vintage Bazaar. We bring together a killer class of young vintage dealers with super-curated collections. I always find stuff for my place there. But I’m also a dealer, so I get right to the source: I’m a regular at auctions and estate sales.
What is your favorite part about your home?
I like that we were able to divide the living room up with an Ikea Expedit bookcase to create an office nook for Jem. Our apartment is very small (about 750 square feet) with no closets, so we use the second bedroom as a walk-in closet. So it worked perfectly that we could divide the living room up to create that office space without it feeling like a living room with a desk in it. Jem’s always sitting in his control room, sorting through the Internet.
Does your home hold any strong memories?
We’ve only lived here since May of last year, so we haven’t had a lot of memory-making time here. But when we moved in, the landlord hadn’t quite finished the place. We didn’t have a kitchen counter or sink, so we had to wash all our dishes in the tub. We had to fix and install a lot of stuff ourselves. It was stressful — we had some other stuff going on in our lives, too — but we pulled it off because we had a vision for what we wanted and we knew the place had potential. We had to live in a hell heap for almost a month, eating out of cartons, but it was well worth it.
Looking for more styles and interiors? Check out our video series, There’s No Place Like Here, where creative types show us their unique spaces — infused with their aesthetic and filled with the treasures they collect. Get involved and show us your amazing space in this Flickr pool.