The enormity of the problems the world faces today can easily overwhelm. It can be hard to figure out how to have a significant individual impact. But one of the easiest things we can do is vote with our dollars. If we commit to being fully conscious of where our money goes, if we make the conscious choice to find and buy from Black businesses, and take the time to know the stories behind what we are buying, we can shift the landscape.

Support Black Businesses: Shop Goodee on Apartment 34

Enter Goodee World. This online shop is an amazing resource for ethical brands that create beautiful, sophisticated, design-savvy pieces for your home and life, while supporting artisans, underserved communities and traditional craft. As Goodee explains they are “where good design and good purpose intersect.” I knew they were speaking my language when Goodee explained their belief that the concept of “less, but better” will only lead to a kinder, smarter, more beautiful world. One hundred percent, yes!

Support Black Businesses: Shop Goodee on Apartment 34Support Black Businesses: Shop Goodee on Apartment 34Support Black Businesses: Shop Goodee on Apartment 34Support Black Businesses: Shop Goodee on Apartment 34

Goodee sources their pieces from all over the world, with the requirement that everything they offer is transparently sourced, ethically made, and designed to last. Their brand partners report about their materials, supply chain, labor standards, ecological footprint, and business practices to Goodee to ensure they meet their standards. Goodee evaluates so many considerations that we should all care about but are often really hard to learn about as an individual consumer. Goodee looks at everything from community engagement to gender advocacy, work in marginalized communities, poverty reduction, water conservancy, use of recycled materials and more. Basically, they’re doing our homework for us.

Goodee offers some of my go-to brands including Scandinavian cult favorites Skagerak and Frama, but I was most excited to discover gorgeous pieces that I’ve never seen before like Baba Tree, a exceptional collection of traditionally made good including stunning baskets from Ghana. I’m also smitten with their collection of handwoven pendant lights by AAKS, a design brand founded by Ghanaian designer Akosua Afriyie-Kumi. AAKS works with Ghana’s skilled women weavers through their ‘Weaving for Change’ home décor project which focuses on preserving the artisan trade of the Tuareg community—many who are living as refugees in Burkina Faso. Each beautiful and handcrafted lamp generates awareness, income and job creation for women artists and their families.

Support Black Businesses: Shop Goodee on Apartment 34

Goodee was founded by twin brothers Byron and Dexter Peart. Already steeped in the creative world as the founders of indie travel accessories line WANT Les Essentiels, Byron and Dexter identified that “we live in a world where the things we consume have begun to consume us. And our lives are so filled with stuff that we’ve left little room for happiness.” Goodee is their antidote and I’m so grateful they decided to take all of their knowledge, amazing taste, and dedication to helping us discover beautiful work that enhances our own lives but also the lives of the people who make the things.

But as an online shopping savant, who spends most of her day in front of the screen, I truly appreciate that Byron and Dexter have created a beautiful shopping experience. Their shop is easy to navigate, tells deep stories about the products they offer, and has a whole section of in-depth editorial stories about their partners. It’s truly a pleasure to explore.

If you’re looking to add a little joy to your home as we continue to muddle through 2020, I highly highly recommend you shop Goodee.

Support Black Businesses: Shop Goodee on Apartment 34


For more of my best shopping recommendations, CLICK HERE.

As a self-professed professional design enthusiast, I’m constantly searching for amazing work to share with you. But I am the first to admit that I have failed to do my own work to find and share designers of Color. That is a gross oversight on my part. There is dramatic underrepresentation of designers and makers of Color in the design world. It’s reported that less than 3% of graduates in Interior Design in the US are black. This massive underrepresentation is a disservice to anyone who not only values social justice, equity, and inclusion but also to anyone who appreciates creativity. Creative conversations can only evolve and grow if all voices are not only at the table but listened to wholeheartedly.

I can make one small contribution to breaking down the walls of white supremacy by ensuring that Apartment 34 shares the stories of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) who are in creative fields. I committing to do that in thoughtful ways on Apartment 34 on a regular basis. To be very specific, I am committing to sharing the work of BIPOC on Apartment 34 every week.

Support Black Designers - Tortus Copenhagen on Apartment34

Today I want to introduce you to a ceramics studio based in Copenhagen. Originally from Milwaukee, founder Eric Landon was introduced to throwing ceramics on a wheel at the age of 16 but didn’t pursue his passion professionally until he moved to Copenhagen in the late 1990s. He graduated from the Royal Danish Academy of Fine Arts in 2008 as a master ceramicist and began doing major art installations and exhibiting sculptures in galleries around the world. But Landon found that version of the art world too elite and limiting. He felt compelled to share his work with a much broader public. He also wanted to get back to a much simpler pure form of ceramics – just the potter and his wheel.

Landon opened Tortus Studio in 2012. His twin brother runs the business side. The studio name refers to Landon’s preferred pace of work – slow and steady – which is what sophisticated hand-thrown pottery requires. And Landon’s work – beautifully simple, majestic vessels in muted tones and sometimes dramatic scale – have gained quite the following. Landon won Craftsman of the Year at Denmark’s Design Awards in 2015, but it’s his savvy use of Instagram, namely the captivating videos of him working at the wheel that has amassed nearly 1million followers.

Support Black Designers - Tortus Copenhagen on Apartment34Support Black Designers - Tortus Copenhagen on Apartment34

Tortus Copenhagen has taken up residence in a historic house in the heart of Old Town Copenhagen. Their space fully embodies Landon’s commitment to authenticity and the handmade. The ground floor houses the showroom while upstairs is the studio and work areas for visiting artists and students. You can go to take immersive workshops directly from Landon.

Support Black Designers - Tortus Copenhagen on Apartment34Support Black Designers - Tortus Copenhagen on Apartment34Support Black Designers - Tortus Copenhagen on Apartment34Support Black Designers - Tortus Copenhagen on Apartment34Support Black Designers - Tortus Copenhagen on Apartment34Support Black Designers - Tortus Copenhagen on Apartment34

I am just obsessed with the minimalist style Landon’s work. It belies the amount of skill and mastery you must possess to make a thing that looks so simple. You can shop pieces from Tortus – or if you’re lucky enough to be able to travel, even purchase a spot in one of their upcoming workshops right HERE. I’ll be counting down the days until I can return to Copenhagen and can visit Tortus in person.

If you have a BIPOC artist or designer you love, please feel free to share their name in comments. If you’re looking for more inspiration immediately the Black Designers & Artists Guild is a great place to start.

For more BIPOC designers features on Apartment 34, CLICK HERE.

images c/o tortus copenhagen


I’ve made no secret of my love for Scandinavian design. My trips to Copenhagen, Stockholm, and Gothenburg last year only cemented my obsession. While the “Scandi” look has had a hold on interior design in U.S. (and particularly on Pinterest!) for a while now, I think there’s more nuisance then the look often gets credit for.

Scandi-modern isn’t just about minimalism, white walls, or bleached oak furniture. A line that embodies that nuisance, and that has also been one of my long-time favorites, is FermLIVING. Their mix of furniture, lighting, and accessories offers a mix of minimalism but also artful sophistication that really adds interest to a space. These pieces aren’t generic. Each one feels considered.

Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34

And now FermLiving has opened its first-ever store in Copenhagen. Situated on the ground floor of a restored 18th-century building, the sprawling shop and showroom feature the FermLiving collection in context for the first time. From living and dining spaces to the kitchen, home office, and even the backyard, there is something special for every corner of your home. I regularly scroll the FermLIVING website, but seeing their collection in context makes it so much easier to discover things you love.

The shop is also offering a collection of curated vintage curio and home decor books that is really really making me wish plane flights were safe right now. Scroll down for a virtual tour of the brand new Home of FermLIVING.

Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34 Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34 Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34 Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34 Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34 Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34 Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34 Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34 Tour the New Home of Ferm Living on Apartment34

For details about my travels to Scandinavia, CLICK HERE.


images courtesy of fermLIVING

I’ve long been a fan of the home furnishings shop Lulu & Georgia. I’ve been sourcing furniture and accessories from them for years. They carry a wide range of styles, their pieces are always great quality and they’ve collaborated with some of my favorites in the design blogging world including Ginny McDonald and Sarah Sherman Samuel.

If you happened to receive the latest Lulu & Georiga catalog you might have thought you were looking at something familiar. I’m so thrilled they were able to showcase their all-new Art Deco Collection in This Old Victorian!

This look is a mix of everything I really love – interesting, elevated pieces that offer a unique blend of styles all combined to create a sophisticated yet inviting vibe. There are clean lines, there are curves, there are nubby wools paired with smooth stone. And also something a little unexpected. A golden-hued sofa, a graphic print rug or a vintage piece of art.

This is juxtaposition at its finest and really showcases how the art of mix and match (rather than same-same) is the secret to creating a space that feels organic, collected and special.

In hindsight, it was probably an unwise move to have Lulu & Georgia at my house, as now I want to change everything around! Occupational hazard.

Also, the light in our house is the entire reason I wanted it. Just sayin’. Natural light is like gold people. Gold.

Thankfully, all this eye candy landed at the perfect time. Now that we’re all staying home so much more (and really should be for the foreseeable future), this is the time to really make your space feel good.

Your environment has a tremendous affect on your mental health, stress levels and overall sense of well being. I’m sure, like me, you’re feeling it directly right now. So if you’ve been sitting on a crummy old couch, are tired of looking at the same stain on the rug, or are sick of that room you always meant to finish but never did (it me!), I would say now is the time invest. Make your home work for you the very best it can. I’m most definitely doing that right now – spoiler alert – more to come on my next big project in an upcoming post.

If these images are not inspirational enough, Lulu & Georgia’s Memorial Day sale just launched. You can now save up to 25% off with the code MDW25 at checkout. I’ve down the searching for you and rounded up my very best picks from their current collection.

If you don’t know interior designer Sarah Sherman Samuel – well you really should. She’s already had two projects grace the covers of major design magazines, her own homes are always amazing (she’s currently renovating a gorgeous fixer-upper in Michigan) and well, basically everything she touches turns to design gold (she actually designed a custom serving board for our holiday shop more than five years ago!). Hence why it’s no surprise her new rug and pillow collection for Lulu & Georgia launched just yesterday and is already nearly sold out!

This New Rug Collection is So Good it's Almost Sold Out! on apartment 34

It makes total sense. The entire collection is so so good. Inspired by her love of the vintage Morrocan and kilim rugs she’s constantly sourcing for clients, Sarah decided to create a cohesive collection of go-to styles that work in nearly any space – all at crazy affordable price points. Both her rugs and pillows feature fun tactile designs making them as satisfying to touch as they are to look at. The collection’s earthy neutral color palette and a minimalist modern take on the ubiquitous beni ourain rugs feels fresh but also timeless. You really can’t go wrong with any option you choose.

This New Rug Collection is So Good it's Almost Sold Out! on apartment 34

One of the things I appreciate most about Saraha’s designs is her knack for combing design styles. Her look isn’t strickly California casual or mid-century or bohemian. She strikes a balance by combining eras, styles and finishes to create elevated casual rooms that could work in nearly any kind of home. The living room above is a perfect example. While the rattan ottomans feel bohemian, the curved clean-lined sofas add an air of sophistication. The Serge Mouille inspired swing arm lamp is a classic, while the ceramics add a structural, mid-century vibe. The addition of Sarah’s (sold out!) Iconic Stripe Rug and a mix of her pillows soften the space a bit more.

This New Rug Collection is So Good it's Almost Sold Out! on apartment 34

I also love the mix of the brutalist bedside table’s hard lines juxtaposed with the soft curves in this bedroom (hello channel tufted bed!). The Arches rug looks great small (see below), but I also really love it in this oversized scale.

This New Rug Collection is So Good it's Almost Sold Out! on apartment 34

Look out – rust orange is making a comeback! But in all seriousness, a bold color is a great way to anchor an otherwise neutral monochromatic room.

This New Rug Collection is So Good it's Almost Sold Out! on apartment 34

I’ll take this entire bathroom, please and thank you.

This New Rug Collection is So Good it's Almost Sold Out! on apartment 34 This New Rug Collection is So Good it's Almost Sold Out! on apartment 34

Very seriously considering the Stripe Break Rug for This Old Victorian. 

This New Rug Collection is So Good it's Almost Sold Out! on apartment 34

Sarah’s collection was more than two years in the making and the attention to detail, the meticulous construction and the pitch-perfect color palette shows all the hard work that went into these designs. While I’m struggling to pick a favorite option, I’ve included my top three picks below. Just shop fast because I have a strong feeling they’re not going to be available for long.

Congratulations Sarah and Lulu & Georgia!


While many an American holiday actually holds significant meaning, we tend to mark the occasion by offering some of the biggest sales of the respective season. And I for one think it’d be rather silly not to take a look at the amazing deals! The best part about all these Memorial Day sales? The discounts are on what we want right now. So, what are you waiting for? I’ve culled my top picks from all the best home stores and I’ve listed them out for you below.

First up we have Serena & Lily. They are offering 20% off almost everything (!) in stores and online with code SUMMERPREP good through May 22-28. I have no doubt your entire home with get the ultimate refresh with this deal.

Next is Target. If you’re looking for a deal on patio furniture, Target is where you need to go. You can snag up to 30% off, plus an extra 15% off outdoor furniture, rugs, cushions, etc. with code HOME at checkout. Online only, now through Monday.

Wayfair is always a great place to find a good discount, but they’re kicking it up a notch for Memorial Weekend. They’re having various markdowns in several categories ranging from dining furniture up to 70% off to area rugs starting at $50.

West Elm is back this year with its Buy More, Save More concept, which always reads like a pretty great situation if you ask me. The sale starts at 15% off $100 and increases all the way to 30% off $3,000 or more. Deals are good in store and online and offered through May 27.

CB2 has an up to 30% off sale going for select outdoor furniture, up to 35% off summer decor and entertaining pieces and up to 25% off select planters. This one is drawing me in, not gonna lie. Ends May 27.

Ah yes, we can’t forget Crate and Barrel. Their sale includes up to 40% off outdoor furniture, 40% off outdoor rugs and 40% off outdoor entertaining and 15% off pretty much everything else..

If you love a more bohemian style for your home, then you have to check out the sale happening over at World Market in stores and online. World Market Rewards Members get 20% off purchases while everyone else receives a 15% discount. Not to mention you get free shipping for any purchases over $99. Sounds straightforward enough for me! The sale runs Thursday May 23 – Monday May 27.

Lulu & Georgia, one of my favorite go-to’s for all things super chic – furniture, lighting, rugs, you name it – is offering up to 25% off purchases of $900! It’s time to grab something really really good looking for you house.

I’ve gone through all of these sales with a fine toothed comb for you and plucked what I think are the most stylish steals – my cart certainly runneth over! Hope you might find something you love too.

If you need last minute Memorial Day Weekend ideas, this is a great cocktail, this is an epic breakfast and this is my favorite outdoor dining look!


It can be hard to remember to call your mom sometimes but it can be even harder to remember Mother’s Day, especially when you are one! But the big day is this coming Sunday, so I thought I’d help you out by sharing some last second gift ideas that I’m 100% confident any mom in your life would actually want. You can consider this a not so subtle reminder that all the moms out there have enough mugs and candles already. If you’re a mom, feel free to forward this post to anyone in your life who might need a little hint!

Cane furniture has been having a resurgence for a little while now, but the best options have either been vintage or high street attempts to recreate cane pieces. Until now. I’ve continued to go down the Scandinavian furniture rabbit hole since my trip to Sweden last month and this is one of my favorite discoveries. Meet the furniture collection Cane.

Crazy for Cane on apartment 34Crazy for Cane on apartment 34  Crazy for Cane on apartment 34 Crazy for Cane on apartment 34 Crazy for Cane on apartment 34 Crazy for Cane on apartment 34

This collection takes the ages old tradition of caning – one of the oldest forms of furniture making – and puts a distinctly modern spin on the ancient furniture making technique, creating pieces with chic shapes and a variety of modern colors. The designers, Ada Chirakranont and Worapong Manupipatpong, are Thai-born and now work in Bangkok but you can see the influence of their Scandinavian-based design training.

This collection feel light and airy, playful and vibrant but also distinctly modern. The pieces’ caned surface allows light and air to flow through the furniture while casting fine patterned shade across the furnished space.

If you’re looking to invest in a lovely piece of caned furniture – or maybe an entire collection for your house this summer, look no further. I’m sure these pieces will become classics coveted 50 years from now.

Crazy for Cane on apartment 34Crazy for Cane on apartment 34Crazy for Cane on apartment 34Crazy for Cane on apartment 34Crazy for Cane on apartment 34Crazy for Cane on apartment 34

For more of our favorite furniture trends, CLICK HERE.

I often dream of traveling to France, immersing myself in Paris’ antique markets, strolling through booth after both, leisurely treasure hunting and unearthing that perfect home decor gem that has long alluded me. Then I remember I have a pre-schooler, a puppy, this site, parent-teacher conferences, 4,000 unanswered emails, a mile long to-do list and oh yeah, I don’t speak French.

Thankfully, I can turn to experts instead. Enter Elsie Green and Victoria from SFGIRLBYBAY. The two have a similar dream and many resources with which to actualize it. Elsie Green is an amazing Bay Area-based purveyor of all things vintage French country which you may have seen here. And Victoria has created Super Marché, her own highly curated collection of French vintage finds. Last weekend San Francisco was lucky to play host to Le Petit Appartement – a pop-up combining both Elsie Green & Super Marché as well as additional friends. The pop-up was like stepping into a perfectly curated other world and I really didn’t want to leave. Scroll and you’ll understand why.

The blank canvas of a studio space was brilliantly transformed into a boudoir, dining room, kitchen and living area, replete with collections of ceramics, brass candle holders, vintage portraits. Louis Philippe mirrors and one of a kind curiosities. You could browse dressers and rompers from Encourage Vintage and accessorize with a perfect pair of Freda Salvador shoes. I truly appreciate the feeling of being transported to the middle of the French country side.

Vintage books as placemats – genius.

Yes indeed, the dramatic oversized Prix Ribbons are everything.

Le Petit Appartement was a rather magical moment. It’s only downside is that existed for just one day. But fear not. I’ve already heard rumors that Le Petit Appartement might pop up again sometime. Maybe near you!


photography by ashley keleman

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