One of the best things about a major move is the opportunity to declutter. It can take a little time and persistence but the results of a good ole purge are so worth it. Case it point – the bathroom. It’s so easy for counter tops, medicine cabinets or drawers to get overstuffed. Guilty of keeping that half full bottle of nail polish because you might like that color again someday? I’m guilty. Or wanting to try every tonic or serum your favorite beauty blog just wrote about? Guilty. Or only clean out your make-up drawer once a year? Totally guilty. Turns out, according to a recent study 71% of American couples have actually argued over a bathroom-related issue (such as hogging storage space, not tidying up and not replacing toiletries). I actually would think it’s even higher!  I swear the amount of bath products I keep on the counter always seems to spontaneously multiply. So when our move presented a chance at a fresh start, I committed myself to keeping our bathroom clutter-free.

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Five easy steps have helped me keep my counters clear for three solid months now so I thought I’d share them with you!

STEP 1: Dump the junk. I started by hucking any and everything in my bathroom that I hadn’t used in awhile. Aka, if it was more than three months old and I hadn’t touched it, it went buh-bye. That random clay mask, I kept telling myself I’d use some Saturday night? See ya. My collection of multiply bath salts for the 3x a year I take a bath? Gone. Random salt spray for my hair that I use…never, eyeshadow I used last holiday season, an overflowing collection of old makeup brushes? All kicked to the curb. And it felt good.

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STEP 2: Identify the necessities. It can be so easy to accumulate random bath products. So I’m doing my best to whittle down to what I know we will use everyday. I particularly love unisex products that can do double duty. Sure we all share toothpaste and the like, but it can be harder to find places where bath products overlap. That’s why I was stoked to learn about the newest body lotion from Lubriderm. It can be a hand lotion or a body lotion and is intended to be used by the guys too! One less product to clutter things up? Sold.

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STEP 3: Put things in pretty containers. I love decanting. I’m a bit of an addict. My dish soap, shampoo and condition, laundry detergent. I love how pretty containers gives a nice uniform look to everything. I think it gives me a sense of calm in my otherwise chaotic life. Regardless of my deep seeded reasoning, I’m a sucker for beautiful jars. These are by Inifinity Jars and I’m in love.

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STEP 4: Add some life. The danger with beautifully empty counter space? It’s hard to resist the urge to fill it. Pretty perfume bottles, a new serum, a pretty tray. It seems innocent but accumulation seems to feed on itself. I find the best way to protect yourself is to ill the space in the first place! A nice plant adds some unexpected life to a bathroom and thrives in the steam filled room. It’s also become a personal mission to hunt down pretty bath products. A sleek black toothbrush, pretty smoked-glass tumbler and my favorite diyptique candle add a little upscale touch so that my bathroom can remain a more spa-like space.

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STEP 5: Repeat steps 1-4. At least once every 3-4 months.

No matter how hard you try it can be tough to keep bathroom clutter at bay, but with a little discipline, I’m going to be able to keep it this way.

PS: this is the first sneak peeks of our bathroom so I thought I’d share my sources! Counters are White Zeus by Silestone / faucet & sink are Kohler / hardware from School House Electric / tile is by Fireclay Tile / Round mirror by Ikea / bath towel from Anthropologie

This post is in partnership with Lubriderm. Thoughts and opinions are 100% my own. Thanks for supporting collaborations that we’re excited about and that have kept Apartment 34’s doors open.

Have you ever wondered about where the things in your home come from? Who created them? How were they made? I firmly believe that a thing takes on a whole new level of meaning when you can tell its story. I’ve made this concept a top priority as I work to design our new house. The renovation process has been such a (never-freakin’-ending!) labor of love. So now that I’m working on furnishing the space, I want what I put in the house to have the same level of care and attention paid that we put into our construction. I’m in no rush to simply fill the house with off the shelf stuff so that it feels “done.” Instead, I’ve been intentionally taking my time, hunting down pieces that I know I will feel good about every time I look at them.

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So when my friends at HP challenged me to create an experience inspired by the beautiful design and attention to detail that went into making their gorgeous HP Spectre laptop (my new obsession which you may have caught in this post here), I knew exactly what I wanted to do. I wanted to collaborate with someone who would put that same attention to detail and commitment to artistry into a piece for my home. It did not take long for me to think of my dream partnership. I immediately set my sights on the home furnishing company Cisco Home. Like HP, they care about both the guts of their product as much as the visual aesthetics.

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I’ve been obsessed with Cisco Home ever since I stumbled upon their store front upon moving to San Francisco. Their eye-catching lighting is what drew me in first, but it is the family run company’s commitment to quality, sustainability and beautiful timeless design that has kept me coveting a Cisco Home piece. Thanks to HP, I got the chance to hop down to Los Angeles to get a personal tour of the Cisco Home headquarters and furniture factory (where nearly everything Cisco Home sells is made by hand), to see what goes into their design process and collaborate with the founder himself on a custom piece for our home! Swoon.

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As we walked Cisco Home’s factory floor, my HP Spectre tucked in my purse (it’s SO thin and light you can’t even tell it’s in there, can you??), I was so impressed by the skill and artisanship that goes into building furniture frames – Cisco only uses certified sustainable hardwoods – hand tufting headboards, stuffing cushions or hand stitching upholstery. Fabrics are designed in house by Cisco Home’s Creative Director & founder Cisco’s daughter Maurishka. To see the human hand that touches each detail of a piece of furniture was so inspiring.

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After getting to see how a piece of furniture is made – start to finish – we sat down do design the perfect piece for my house! I was like a kid in a design candy store to say the least. Since our living room is likely going to be the heart of our home – it’s directly connected to the kitchen and will be the ultimate hang out zone – we decided to design a sofa. When it comes to home furnishings, your sofa is kind of equivalent to your computer if you think about it. It needs to be your work horse and stand up to all the abuse you dish out, but it also needs to look good and inspire you! I really want our living room sofa to be a piece I’ll love for years to come. Thankfully, my HP Spectre was the perfect travel companion to help us get the job done. At less than 2.5 lbs I was able to travel with it easily. And with its great battery life, I didn’t even have to haul a charger.

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We were able to sit down right there in the middle of the Cisco Home showroom and quickly look up sofa styles on their website, look through all my Pinterest boards and narrow down to the perfect sofa style, fabric choice and color palette for my design – all in less than an hour! I loved that the online world could so easily collide with the old school physical one that is furniture making. It felt so satisfying to look at Pin boards on my HP Spectre while simultaneously flipping through Cisco Home’s books of gorgeous textile samples, connecting the virtual with the tactile in real time.

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While I’ll have to wait for my sofa for awhile, I thought I’d share a little sneak peek of the design direction we’re headed.

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I cannot wait for this house that I’ve worked on for so long to finally feel like home. And knowing the loving, thoughtful origins of our living room sofa is going mean so much to me. It’s just proof positive of HP’s entire approach to the design of the Spectre; that when something is thoughtfully designed from the inside out, it is made to last and to be loved.

original photography for apartment 34 by jeff mindell

This post is a paid collaboration with HP Spectre. All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own. Thank you for supporting partnerships that I’m excited about and that have kept Apartment 34’s doors open.

Apartment 34 on Instagram

Fall is always the best style season of the year. Before you’re buried under winter coats, but the summer’s glow has yet to fade, now is the time to play. You can have fun with proportion, with textures, with adding a little edge. I’ve always been a fan of menswear influenced style. It gives off a subtle sexiness while being incredibly practical for daily life; think wide-legged pants, flats and a cozy sweater or two. When you mix them all together you get a decidedly strong, but thoroughly feminine approach to taking the new season on in style.

Continue to scroll for some of my current favorite looks.

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Extra-wide culottes paired with a snug sweater have me like whoa. Especially in this creamy, caramely warm color palette. And yes…those so ugly they’re really ridiculously good looking shoes are starting to appeal to me too.

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All white is always alright in my book. Those denim culottes are also calling my name and I just might have to add a girlie white blouse to my white shirt arsenal.

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A classic trouser feels fresh when it’s cropped and is an easy thing to get you out of my your denim rut.

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A touch of blush & metallic lend a girlie touch to borrowed from the boys staples like bomber jackets and loafers.

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A peacoat never goes out of style. To make it more wearable in this early part of fall when the weather just can’t make up its mind, pair yours with some bright whites and a chunky open toe sandal.

I’m a big fan of adding a few choice pieces to my closet around this time of year. Especially ones I know I’ll love for a long time – rather than just buying into the it-trend of the moment. Any of these options would make my closet very very happy for years to come.

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get your shop on: shirt / backpack / watch / monk strap loafers / cashmere cardigan / culottes / bag / sweater / coat

For even more fall fashion inspiration, follow my Street Style Pinterest board HERE

images via goop

So, I’m the first to admit I’m a print-phobe. I constantly admire the use of pattern in other people’s homes, but never feel brave enough to add it to my own. Even after reading Rebecca’s new book, I still feel nervous! But I recently came upon a genius solution for all us pattern wussies – removable tiles.

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But this isn’t the removable wallpaper of yesteryear. Yes, removable wallpaper used to have a nasty stigma, but the stuff coming out these days is actually pretty fantastic. No vinyl allowed.

In this case, the Australian wallpaper and fabric design company Quercus & Co have created a gorgeous series of removable wall tiles that let you inject some color and texture virtually anywhere you’d like. And then simply peel it back off when you don’t like it!

Inspired by the palaces of Spain and North Africa, Quercus’s La Casa Wallpaper Tiles are hand-painted decorative designs digitally printed onto self-adhesive fabric. So it’s not going to look plastic-y or weirdly shiny. Instead, they just look gorgeous.

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Unlike removable wallpaper, which often comes in roles, these individual tiles offer a lot of versatility. I absolutely love the idea of putting them on the risers of a staircase. How chic does that look?! Or maybe giving a piece of Ikea furniture a facelift. They could also be wonderful as an accent wall, or be used to punch up a powder room without the commitment and expense of traditional wallpaper.

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The tiles themselves are really really good looking. The tones are soft and lovely, with a bit of a watercolor effect to them. If you’re looking to add a little Moroccan flair to your home, this seems like the perfect way to give it a try. Your only limitation is how creative you’re willing to get.

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For our entire archive of theft worthy design ideas CLICK HERE.

 

images via quercus & co

While I’m a sucker for a good recipe any day of the week, I might love good restaurants even more. A fabulous meal I don’t have to clean up after? It’s the best, am I right?! But I particularly love it when beautiful food is served in an equally stunning space. This is certainly the case with a brand new pasta bar that recently opened in San Francisco’s Mission District; Barzotto.

Having just returned from my trip to Italy (sneak peeks of which you may have spied here), I am loving having fresh handmade pasta – and an awesome looking spot to eat it – in my own backyard.

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Every detail throughout Barzotto is spot on. The former space was a restaurant called St. Vincent – which I loved in its heyday – but it is nearly unrecognizable from its former much-darker self. All walls were taken from black to white using either original exposed cinderblock walls or Venetian plaster. Even the wood-paneled ceiling has been white washed and space’s central open kitchen bar was clad in white square subway tiles installed on a diamond-oriented bias. At the front of the restaurant, there is a simple seated bar at the open windows where guests can watch San Francisco’s Mission neighbors stroll by. The geometric tile floor totally pops against the subdued tones.

The lighting throughout is gorgeous too — a collection of contemporary brass pieces from Schoolhouse Electric, Restoration Hardware, and CB2 – my faves all around. Plants and pops of greenery bring life into the space. Installations in vintage pots were designed by Eleanor Gerber-Siff from Wallflower Designs. Carrera marble tables are simply accented with wooden salt and pepper grinders, utensil caddies and gold-leaf votive candle holders. A long bench with suspended leather backing banquettes is flanked by custom walnut framed-mirrors in the main seating. I give it all an A+. Guests are greeted at a custom counter and built-in shelving for retail wines, fresh pastas and soft serve gelato sundaes (I hear the spumoni with the house-made magic shell, candied cherries and pistachios is incredible. I cannot wait to try it myself).

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At the heart of the restaurant, chef Michelle Minori and her team are hand-rolling fresh pastas so that guests seated at the open kitchen can sit in on the action. Extra-long spaghetti hangs on drying racks for practical reasons (and dramatic effect).

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This light, bright space just makes me happy – and hungry. I have a feeling many a carb-filled evening is going to be spent here.

For more of my favorite spots in and around San Francisco, CLICK HERE.

interior design by hannah collins, photography by kassie borreson 

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to blog – as your job? Are you passionate about style and design? Are you interested in writing, social media and content creation? Then this might be your lucky day.

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After nearly a decade of running Apt34 (did I just type that?!), I’ve come to learn what works and what doesn’t in this whole crazy blogging business and one thing is for certain: you are only as good as the people around you. That’s why I am looking for the most incredible, knock-your-socks-off intern to join Team Apartment 34.

I’ve outlined all the details below. Read on and if you think you can rock the Apartment 34 world, I can’t wait to hear from you.

I will be accepting resumes sent to [email protected] until FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 23. Please be sure to include FALL INTERN in the email subject line.

FALL EDITORIAL INTERN
> Part time position, 15 hours a week
> Need exceptional organizational skills and strong attention to detail
> Only highly motivated self starters with a passion for lifestyle topics need apply
> Strong grasp of all major social media platforms. Experience with WordPress a plus
> High level of creativity & ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously required
> Can work remotely but living in the Bay Area strongly preferred
> Compensation dependent on final role definition and skill set of applicants
> Can be applied for school credit
> Flexibility, willingness to try new things & the ability to work in a (highly) nontraditional environment a must!

If you’d like to learn about everything it takes to create a lifestyle website and are ready to dive in and get your hands dirty, the Apartment 34 world is likely for you. So get creative with the process, catch my attention – basically be so bad ass that I can’t ignore you! Please also link us to anything you think represents you and your work: personal blog, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, Tumblr.

I want to see it all!

photography for apartment 34 by aubrie pick

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