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House Tour: Welcome to Our New Place!
House Tour: Welcome to Our New Place!
House Tour: Welcome to Our New Place!

I always LOVE seeing other people’s homes (Selling Sunset has been a fun Netflix binge lately!), so I thought it would be fun to share our new place!

E and I bought this place and moved last fall after we had been soft-searching and saving a down payment for years. We’d get frustrated every time we looked because it seemed impossible to find a place that we loved within our budget! The Boston real estate market is insane, and we had heard many horror stories of people getting into bidding wars, having to write emotional offer letters, or even needing to decline the home inspection in order to have their offer accepted. We had very low expectations and had started to lose hope that we might be stuck in our tiny studio apartment forever. As much as we LOVED that place, it was too small for a family, and we knew we were running out of time!

Finally we threw our hands up to the universe and my mom offered to do a little searching for us. She found this gem of a condo almost immediately and it felt meant to be! Only one of the three units had been publicly listed on Redfin, so we were actually able to reach out to the listing agent to view the third floor unit before it ever went on the market. We had a wonderful experience working with Steve Musto at Insight Realty, and we’re grateful that he made the home buying process as easy and stress-free as possible (and he was extremely patient with our first-time buyer nerves!) Thank you Steve!!

This place checked all our boxes: 2 bed + 2 bath, open floor plan, white kitchen, plenty of natural light, short driving commute for E and walking distance to the T for me, parking, a dishwasher and laundry machines (both a first for us!), a porch for sipping coffee on the weekends, and easy access to parks & cafes. AND within our budget. I felt like we hit the real estate jackpot!!

We finally said goodbye to our tiny studio in November and moved just in time for the holiday season. Although we got off to a bit of a rocky start with a gas leak caused by internet installation, some very sensitive electrical circuits, and our locks breaking within 24 hours of moving in, thankfully everything got cleared up relatively quickly and it’s been smooth sailing since then (knock on wood, ha)!

We love our new neighborhood and kind neighbors, and most importantly, our house feels like HOME. The move couldn’t have happened at a better time since we’ve been home 24/7 during COVID and had time to complete lingering home projects. And now that we’re expecting our baby girl next month, it’s been such a dream to get to decorate her nursery! We’ve been so glad to have the extra space with all the incoming baby gear.

So, on to the home tour! I’ve linked many of the items in each room throughout the post. I earn a small commission if you choose to purchase through these affiliate links (at no additional cost to you). Thank you for helping support this blog! šŸ™‚

FULL DISCLOSURE: Our house is never this clean all at once, even with the extreme power of nesting! I photographed each room one at a time over the course of several weeks and cleaned as I went. I’m sure it’s about to get ten times more messy when we bring a newborn home šŸ˜‰

 

Entryway

Welcome to our place!! This landing at the top of the stairwell has worked out well as a nice little bonus space for storing shoes and coats (and quarantining packages during COVID, too…never could have imagined that use when we moved last year!)

Foyer

Once you come inside the front door, there’s a little built-in bench and bins to drop our stuff. The canvas was a wedding gift from my photography mentor and friend, and it makes me smile every time šŸ™‚

I knew I would eventually want a place to display family photos, so I installed a simple row of these four matted frames. We’ll be able to easily change out the prints later.

Living Room

Our living room is the first thing you see when you walk in the front door, so I wanted to make it feel really cozy and welcoming!

Originally the condo had a picture frame wall, and although it looked really nice, it diminished the functionality of the space. The picture frame opening really limited what we could put on the wall in terms of art or a TV, and it made furniture placement a bit tricky. Because of the open floor plan, there was also a lack of concealed storage space, and I knew we would need lots of that once we had a baby. We decided to put in a built-in bookshelf and that solved all those problems perfectly! More on that below!

Here are some images taken before & after the built-in:

We worked with a talented carpenter that our realtor recommended. I started by using Planner 5D to make a scaled model of our living room and furniture so I could get a feel for how big the bookshelf needed to be. Then I made a more detailed bookshelf plan in InDesign and gave that to our carpenter, who translated it to practical terms for us and sketched out the final plan. So cool, right?!

Here are some photos of the bookshelf in progress! And E hanging the window shades šŸ™‚

And here is the finished product! I absolutely LOVE it and it was so cool to see the plans come to life!

Now we have plenty of space for photo albums, picture frames, and concealed storage cabinets.

I have this weird thing about wanting appliances to blend in as much as possible, so I knew early on that I wanted to go for The Frame TV! It sits flush against the wall and the screen turns into artwork whenever you’re not using it. Our carpenter installed it on a swivel arm so that we can extend the TV out from the wall, angle it when there’s a glare, and access the internet router in the back. So smart!

The living room leads out onto the porch, where we spend lots of our time sipping coffee on nice summer days. That’s the only space I haven’t gotten around to decorating it yet (that budget went to the nursery furniture instead), so we just have a couple of camping chairs and a TV table outside. Someday I’ll get around to making it feel more finished, but we are still wholeheartedly enjoying our time out there. šŸ™‚

 

Dining Room

Although we don’t have a formal “dining room,” I sectioned off part of the main room using a separate rug so that we would have a place for a table and chairs. This might also end up serving as a little play area when the baby is older! When we have guests, we use the counter stools instead.

Here’s another before/after!

 

Kitchen

Our kitchen is one of my favorite parts about the house, and it’s been incredibly useful since we’ve been cooking much more during COVID!

When I used to cook large meals in our studio apartment’s kitchen, I would run out of room so easily that sometimes the floor doubled as counter space. In the new kitchen, I’m amazed at what a difference it makes to have plenty of space for food prep, washing dishes, etc! I don’t think I’ll ever count myself as someone who cooks just for fun, but meals have definitely gotten a lot more enjoyable to make. And the dishwasher is a game changer…I do NOT miss washing all our dishes by hand!!!

 

Nursery

My favorite room in the house is the baby’s! Since we didn’t have a second bedroom at our old apartment, I wondered if I would ever have the chance to decorate a nursery…so it was honestly a dream come true to put this space together. šŸ™‚

The baby actually won’t be staying in here for awhile since we have a bassinet set up for her in our bedroom, but in the meantime, I’m looking forward to spending many hours here reading books and snuggling with her on the daybed!

 

I started designing the room around the rainbow mural. I couldn’t think of a more fitting theme for our rainbow baby, plus the colors make me swoon!

I was originally inspired by this mural, but it was out of our budget, so I decided to make my own using watercolor brushes in Adobe Illustrator. It turned out even better that way because I could customize the colors and the size to fit the wall! And the project ended up being half the cost ā€“ win! šŸ™‚

Here’s another before/after. The room used to have gray walls, but E painted it for me (best first Mother’s Day gift ever!) using “Pure White” by Sherwin Williams. I love how much the white paint brightens and warms up the room…such a huge difference!

In addition to painting, E also took care of all of the tasks involving the power drill this year. That officially made him my hero. I think we both underestimated how tricky floating shelves would be to hang, but they were 100% worth it.

We decided to skip a changing table and use the space for a daybed instead. My mom will be staying with us for a month after the baby is born, and she’ll be able to sleep in here while the baby sleeps in our room. I think it will also come in handy for long nights so that either E or I can catch some sleep while the other parent is up with the baby. I hope we’ll spend many hours of reading books together here, too! šŸ™‚

More floating shelves with various art prints from Minted and Etsy! I child-proofed (& mom-proofed) the frames and the mirror using Command hooks on the back so that we can’t accidentally bump them off the wall.

The stuffed animals, pillow, and blanket will all come out of the crib when she eventually sleeps here, but they look so cute in the meantime!

One of my favorite features of the daybed is that it has three drawers at the bottom for extra storage. One of them is already packed to the max with books!

Little nursery details…I’m especially obsessed with this rainbow blanket!

The round bin is meant to be a hamper, but for now we’re using it as a place to store blankets and toys. This bunny was a baby gift from my best friend, and I think it’s so sweet that it made me cry when I unwrapped it! ā™„

Nursery Closet

Since we don’t have a changing table with drawers, I worked hard to maximize the storage space in the nursery closet. This has been nesting headquarters…I can’t even count the number of hours I’ve spent arranging and rearranging things in here! šŸ™‚

 

I’m a HUGE fan of these storage drawers! They’re super sturdy, very deep, and can be easily rearranged. I made some labels, but the translucency of the drawers also helps spot things at a glance.

I used two drawers for each clothing size, with one drawer for bodysuits and the other for bottoms & sleepers. There’s also a drawer for nursing supplies, health/grooming, diapers, bath supplies, small toys, and socks/shoes. I’m sure these categories will change as she grows and we figure out parenting, and that’s why it’s so nice to be able to change the labels and the stacking order of the drawers!

For the outfits on hangers, I found these cute size dividers on Etsy!

To maximize storage space, E added an Elfa basket system to the back of the door. Just like the drawers, these baskets are also super easy to pop off and rearrange.

Last week I added these rails for bow storage! They’re from IKEA and super cheap. I’m not sure whether to be proud of how cool this looks, or embarrassed that baby girl already has so many bows (guilty girl mom here, ha!) But I do love this system so that it’s easy to find a color without digging through a bin!

Since we don’t have a changing table, I’m planning on using this portable changer around the house – either on top of the daybed with a blanket underneath, or on the floor.

I put together a little diaper/nursing caddy that I can easily carry to different rooms. It’s stocked with wipes, burp clothes, diapers, nursing pads, tissues, diaper & nipple cream, an extra onesie & paci, and some protein bars for snacks while nursing.

Master Bedroom

I loved the warm neutrals at our old place, so I kept the same look for our new bedroom. It feels cozy but also bright and airy during the daytime!

 

Why is it always so hard to figure out what to put over the bed?! It’s always the last decision I make when decorating because I get stuck. It took six months of living here to finally settle on this macrame wall hanging, but I think it’s the perfect finishing touch for the room. šŸ™‚

I’ve been using the same quilt from Anthropologie since 2012 and I’m not sure I’ll ever switch. It’s the most soft, comfy thing ever and still looks good when I don’t get around to making the bed (which is often, if I’m being honest).

We went with a slightly warmer white paint for this room: “Alabaster” by Sherwin Williams. I think gray paint can look really beautiful in some spaces (we have the same shade in our living room and I like it there), but I wanted to add some warmth to this room since the light is cooler on this side of the house.

These hanging planters were one of our last lingering quarantine projects to complete. We’ve had them since Christmas and never got around to putting them up until this summer! E hung them using toggle bolts and they’re now one of my favorite parts of the room. They bring a lot of color and life to that corner!

This room is my favorite place to be at sunset because the light comes pouring through the window.

Master Closet

The builder put a sliding door on the closet, which has been really handy to maximize space in the bedroom.

Bathrooms

Not too much to say about these rooms since they were pretty straightforward to decorate! We did end up painting the guest bathroom a dark blue, which helped it feel a little more inviting since it doesn’t get any natural light. The color is Benjamin Moore’s “Providence Blue.”

 

Here’s a before/after with the gray paint vs. the blue paint in the guest bathroom:

 

….and that wraps our home tour! It was so quick to write about, yet this post represents hours and hours of love poured into this house since we moved in November. I’m grateful that we had a slower year to finish making it feel like home. Now we just need to welcome our baby girl and it will be complete! šŸ™‚

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