APT: DUMBO + I Design Stuff + I Love the Internet

Another side of the (not) “new” apartment.

Brooklyn work space

I realized last night (upon receiving lease renewal forms) that it’s already been 10 months since we rented “the new apartment” in Brooklyn. Whaaaat?! I don’t really understand how it’s been almost a year already, but geez—I guess I should take some more pictures of it. A little while back I showed you one side of the main room, now here’s another side. This room contains the kitchen, dining room, living room and office, all compressed into a surprisingly spacious-feeling 220 square feet.

When I was planning out this room, one thing I knew I wanted was a nice work surface. I don’t like compact desks. I considered a few possibilities, and eventually arrived at a combination of two VIKA LERBERG trestles ($10 each) and a VIKA FURUSKOG table top (regularly $60, but I found it for 50% off), both from IKEA. That’s a 60×30″ work surface for $50—not bad! The table is actually deep enough that Evan and I can both sit and work opposite each other at the same time if we need to.* Plus, if we slide the iMac to the end of the desk (or put it on the floor), the table is big enough to seat 4 people—really nice if we have friends over for dinner.**

*This has never happened. But it could!
**This has also never happened. I blame the lure of the roof deck.

Brooklyn work space

The IKEA PS cabinet holds everything…and then some. I was sad to have to give up the awesome fauxdenza from our old apartment (it’s since been relocated to a closet at the house—more about that in another post!) because of space, but this guy really does an amazing job of storing way more stuff than it seems like it would be able to. All of our office supplies, tools, dog stuff, papers, and other things are in there, with room to spare. Our PS cabinet has been with us since 2003—almost a decade now. It’s an IKEA classic at this point, and I really think it’s one of their all-time best products.

Funny how much the (not) “new” apartment is starting to look like the old one, isn’t it? I even hung all of the artwork in the exact same arrangement. I still don’t think this place has the same kind of friendliness the old apartment did, but I am warming up to it! We definitely have a lot more visitors in DUMBO than we did in Washington Heights, that’s for sure, and I do love being able to open my home to people from out of town. It’s not big enough for overnight guests, but for hanging out for hours on end petting dogs and drinking coffee, it’s perfect! Every time friends or family come over, it really does start to feel a little more like it’s ours.

Herman Miller Lifework blog

If you’d like to see a few more photos of this side of the apartment (as well as some new pictures of the office at the house!) and read a little interview with me about work spaces, head over to the Herman Miller blog. I’m so honored to have been asked to contribute to their Lifework blog! I think it’s obvious to anyone who’s seen any part of my house or apartment that I have a considerable number of Herman Miller products in my life, so this was a lot of fun to do. (Thanks for inviting me, Amy!)

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  • Reply MFree December 21, 2012 at 12:45 pm

    Thanks for the comment about the PS cabinet. I’ve been thinking about purchasing it but our luck with ikea is about 50/50. It’s always struck me odd that some ikea furniture holds up so well while others fall apart completely. Maybe its the nature of the metal pieces to the wood. Well done on the desk. Those legs have a great shape!

  • Reply Francine December 21, 2012 at 2:05 pm

    Love the artwork, and the pop of color from the yellow chair. Very cool space.

  • Reply maria December 21, 2012 at 4:16 pm

    As always, great taste. Thanks for sharing & congratulations on the interview!

  • Reply maria December 21, 2012 at 4:17 pm

    oh, and and I hope you are feeling better :)

    • Reply Anna @ D16 December 21, 2012 at 4:40 pm

      Thanks, Maria—I’m about 75% of the way there ;)

  • Reply Stephanie (afunhouse) December 21, 2012 at 4:20 pm

    Love the view of ‘the other side’! Also, just an fyi- neither of the herman miller links work for me…I know you like to fix links asap so thought I’d take a sec to let you know! Glad you seem to be feeling better :)

    • Reply Anna @ D16 December 21, 2012 at 4:40 pm

      Hmmm, they’re both working fine for me! Maybe their site was down temporarily?

    • Reply Stephanie (afunhouse) December 22, 2012 at 9:38 am

      I just checked back and loved the photos/q&a! You’re right, I bet they were just down for a while! Thanks for the link :)

  • Reply meg December 21, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    Is that a photo of Grand Teton? I was there this summer and looooooved the park and the mountains. And now I love that photo. Where is it from?

  • Reply Nicole. December 21, 2012 at 4:25 pm

    Did you make that desk yourself? If so, did I miss the tutorial on it? Looks awesome.

    • Reply Anna @ D16 December 21, 2012 at 4:38 pm

      Hi Nicole, the desk details are in the post :)

    • Reply Nicole. December 22, 2012 at 8:19 am

      Oh, links, duh. Thanks!

  • Reply Terri December 21, 2012 at 5:22 pm

    I’ve been reading for years and this may well be my first post. But you’ve done it again, Anna…this place looks fantastic.

  • Reply Lizzie December 21, 2012 at 6:32 pm

    I covet everything you own, pretty much. You have such fabulous taste.

  • Reply Kyle December 21, 2012 at 11:16 pm

    Great artwork, it’s nice to see a sensible arrangement.
    I’ve been researching white paint colors for a new (old) house and have been reflecting on a warning I’ve been given to not paint a dark room white, or any light color, as it will look drab. As a longtime admirer of the whites in your home I wonder if you have experienced this.

  • Reply liz December 22, 2012 at 1:21 pm

    Hello Anna – this is an off topic comment, I hope you don’t mind.
    I was pottering round this house today with BBC Radio 4 on in the background when the discussion moved on to Tove Jansson. The Moomins make me think of you so I thought you might be interested in the programme they were discussing. ‘Moominland Tales: The Life of Tove Jansson’ will be on BBC 4 on Boxing Day (http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01pgrk2). I have no idea how to watch BBC TV in the US but I know less technically inept people find ways. (If you’d like to hear the discussion it’s online here – http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01pf5sj.) And sorry about all the links… I’ll understand if you decide to delete all of this!
    On a different subject can I say thank you for a year of enjoyable reading? Thank you! I hope you feel fully better soon and that you have a great break. If you run out of tiling feel free to let me know as I’m happy to host a tiling holiday here… accommodation and vegan food provided!

  • Reply Raya December 22, 2012 at 2:22 pm

    Oh, I love your appartment. It’s very beautiful! :)

  • Reply Amy December 23, 2012 at 3:09 pm

    Anna, thanks again. We were honored to have you!

  • Reply Kate December 28, 2012 at 3:33 pm

    Where did you find that amazing triangle rug?

    • Reply Anna @ D16 January 14, 2013 at 2:52 pm

      Sorry Kate, I missed this question! The rug was from IKEA…about 7 years ago. Sadly, it’s been discontinued for a long time. :(

  • Reply Laurel January 4, 2013 at 12:42 pm

    Hi Anna, I was wondering, does the table top part of the desk sit on top of the trestles without any screws or bolts? Or do you have to attach it in some way? Thank you in advance. I enjoy your blog.

    • Reply Anna @ D16 January 14, 2013 at 2:52 pm

      No bolts! The top is just resting on the trestles. The wood plus the weight of the computer is enough for it to stay in place.

  • Reply Lisa January 9, 2013 at 6:02 pm

    Gorgeous apartment! Thanks (as always) for sharing.

    I think maybe the reason this apartment feels less “friendly” is because there’s nothing old. In the other (also gorgeous) apartment and house, the older buildings gave those spaces the European-style contrast of old and new, rustic and industrial. Maybe if you introduced one or two antique or rustic pieces, you’d get the same wonderful vibe as the other places.

    Or you could just bask in the modernist perfection. Either way.

  • Reply Erin January 10, 2013 at 5:28 pm

    Hi Anna,

    Did you finish your desk top at all? IKEA sells the Behandla wood treatment and it’s recommended to protect the wood, but I’m wondering if it really needs it.

    Very handsome apartment!

    • Reply Anna @ D16 January 10, 2013 at 5:41 pm

      Yes, I put two coats of matte poly on it. I don’t think you’d want to leave a soft pine work surface untreated—it would get grubby pretty quickly.

  • Reply ROK January 14, 2013 at 2:05 pm

    With the Ikea PS Cabinet, how do you like the little locks (instead of knobs)? I want to use two of them in my living room, but I’m worried the keys would be annoying (and possibly lost forever in a toy bin). The posts I’ve seen on Ikea hacker where people remove the keys look a little complicated for someone who’s DIY extends to hanging pictures on a wall.

    • Reply Anna @ D16 January 14, 2013 at 2:47 pm

      Knobs? On something inspired by a school locker? I dunno, that sounds pretty weird looking to me. We just leave the keys in the locks all the time, so it’s not like we have to go looking for them every time we need to get something out. If you have a kid and you’re worried about the keys being pulled out, you could just put a little hook on the wall nearby and hang the keys on it.

    • Reply Anna @ D16 January 14, 2013 at 2:50 pm

      I just Googled and found a picture of what you’re talking about. Personally, I think it looks silly…like trying to turn something that has a utilitarian look into something it’s not. Just say NO to knobs on lockers! ;)

  • Reply eva March 17, 2013 at 9:42 am

    i lOVE art in your apartement.could you tell me where you find these cute things? thanks!

    • Reply Anna @ D16 March 17, 2013 at 6:26 pm

      Thank you! Is there a particular piece you’re interested in? They’re all done by different artists.

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