So I’ve been organizing my apartment to make it more livable, more comfortable, prettier and more organized. Which means spending money. I got this bookcase from Amazon ( here’s my list of items like bookshelves, trunks and tubs) which costs $34 and put my books and sewing machine and some tubs for inventory. I got two so that I could make a bedroom wall and separate the living room into a space with its own special integrity. I got this floral fabric cube from target and I use it for pajamas, sleep socks and sleep bras (I need them). It’s next to the linens chest I got from Home Depot during lockdown, which I put together on my own and need to stain soon.
the bookshelf wall from behind
Now, instead of a big open space, the bedroom is its own environment. It has really changed my mood when I wake up because now, one one side I have the plants in the window, and if I torn around I see books, my sewing machine, my camera and more plants. Once the wall is painted it’s going to be a red jewel box with my photography on the walls. Basically the room I’ve wanted my whole adult life.
The main area where I process and store my clothes and my online shop inventory has been updated with an over the door valet that holds items that need to be researched, photographed and measured. There two big tubs are holding processed items, the two little ottomans have upcycled and summer items (they went back to the living room). It’s better than it was. And now I’m not scared of that corner.
This was how it started off. I was embarrassed because I just kept dumping things in the corner as I bought more inventory and all the boxes accumulated over six months of ordering stuff online. It seemed overwhelming but then one day I just started breaking down boxes. It took ten minutes, so I felt really silly because I had procrastinated over nothing. I have a closet full of boxes and packing materials and the rest I got rid of. I still have stuff in the living room to change but I wanted to post about my progress.
Doing this energized this area. I feel a lot better and it’s easier to get things done. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, break your task into little, achievable goals. Every time you tick a goal off your list, you will feel motivated to tackle another one. You might still procrastinate, but the little tasks add up and make your life better.
So obviously I’m not back at work. But then again, maybe you’re not either. I had some unemployment weeks left from last year that kick in with the CARES Act, and I qualify for the stimulus so it’s not perfect, but I have some cash coming in for awhile. I’m a little scared about what’s next since I’m a visual merchandiser and shopping irl might not be a thing for awhile. I’m trying not to freak out about the fact that I laboriously worked my ass off to move up to something better only to watch that shut down because a virus started in a place I never even heard of. Within a few short months, life turned upside down and inside out and I have to wear a bandanna on my face to stay safe if I go outside.
But America has been through things like this, like the flu epidemic of 1918, or that time polio tore through the population in 1916. This is the first time I had to live through something like this. At the moment the stores still have food, but you have to stand outside while they make sure that people can shop without being crowded. It felt weird, because we have so much freedom to run around, but… I have a lot of stuff that I’ve had no time to think about. Can’t say I’m too busy now, right?
When I moved into my apartment five years ago, I spread my stuff around and that was it. I found some random stuff and that was me decorating. So now that I have time, I’m realizing that I haven’t really been living here. I’ve been storing my stuff and my body here while hunting high and low for a life. I wanted to put my bedding and probably pajamas in their own space, and I saw this unfinished trunk on home depot, $173 and it just symbolized adulthood and good decisions. I’m not just putting stuff any old where, I am intentionally purchasing a piece of furniture to make my home a better place to be.
Regardless of what’s going on, it’s Spring and I wanted to update my comforter options (I got a great one years ago courtesy of Southern Tides) and get something pretty. I went through the Bed, Bath and Beyond clearance section and found this 9 piece set (including coordinating sheets) for $39.99. I also made tshirt design using my own photos thanks to a video that was floating around on twitter. You can use saran wrap, parchment paper a printed photo or drawing and a regular iron to make a custom piece. Click here to see the google page with different diy videos. I love how this turned out. I love collaging, so I’m definitely going to circle back around to this idea soon.
This is the last week I’m shopping like this. I tried to keep myself to the bare necessities, but I kept thinking of stuff I needed. Like drawer liner sheets from the Laundress, $17.99. Apparently I was up late and ordered stuff from the Container Store, then forgot that I ordered the stuff until I got the shipping notice. Now I have to wait until all of the laundry is clean so that I can plan out the drawers under my bed. A whole project. I got gold paint from Culture Hustle, &11.99, and more fabric squares from Fat Quarter. I got paint brushes when I was grocery shopping at Dollar Tree, the varnish is for my new trunk, and this was the tiny trunk that I got from Bed, Bath and Beyond but it was too small. I gotta stop shopping.
Once I get my apartment organized, then I can settle into being creative again. It’s been a looooong time. For the three years or so I’ve just been coming home and going to bed. No dreams when I sleep and I felt dead. Over the course of the last few weeks, I can feel my blood flowing again.
I will admit to some anxiety, especially because of my job situation. I saw an ad for Ruby’s Happy Farm on Fashion Bomb Daily‘s instagram page and decided to invest in some top quality cbd. These pre-rolls are from hemp plants and have barely any thc. You can get a bundle of five for $10, and they ship fairly quickly and they are legal. I feel calmer, but not paranoid or super hungry. Just calmer and able to focus on the moment, get tasks done and stay out of the fridge. Like vitamins but you smoke them.
So that’s what’s going on in my little quarantine corner. How are you coping? Are you taking care of yourself and eating sensibly? Don’t feel bad if you’re scared or angry, that makes sense. Most people don’t have corona virus. People who are out of work did nothing wrong. It’s a freak thing and we just have to deal with it. Try to make the best out of the time you have to work on stuff that you like doing.
Let’s just try to stay strong and show appreciation for those that have to work as medical staff, grocery store cashiers and security guards. Donate if you can, or make some masks if you have a sewing machine. Whatever you need to do to not feel helpless. And if you want to do nothing, do that until you can deal with everything.
I live in Brooklyn, and while I love my apartment, there is one thing that makes me a little less satisfied with it: I can’t have pets. When I signed the lease they told me that if I bring in anything with legs there will be consequences. Most of the time I don’t care, but the other day I found out that someone’s got a dog on the 5th floor and it’s gotten me very upset. So I spent some time doting on my plantpets, see above.
I bought these in teeny tiny pots at home depot last year, and I recently re-potted them because I live in an apartment with no pets. Funny thing, those teeny pots were holding them back. They’ve plumped out and each grew at least an inch the first week in larger surroundings. Like they were just waiting to bust out and unfurl.
On the one hand, boring post right? But on the other hand, think about what’s confining you and keeping you from being amazing. Can you change it? Do you want to? Maybe you need a caring gardener to lift you out of your tight spot.