interior designInteriorssneak peeks

sneak peek: cursive design

by anne

today’s sneak peek takes us into the 2 story loft of sarah fox (cursive design) and jon satrom in chicago’s noble square neighborhood. between the two they make jewelry, home accessories, art, teach and own studio thread (a small video production company that primarily works with artist and non-profits). everything is run out of their home so they needed a versatile, functional space for living and working. despite being a small space, the open floor plan was the answer to their problems. click here for more, full-sized images. [thanks so much sarah and jon!]anne

[above: 1st floor – this room is our main living area. it’s a living room, dining room, kitchen and my studio. it’s basically our everything room. there is a bathroom on this floor and our porch connects off to the side. when we first saw this place we fell pretty hard for the brick, exposed timber and ductwork.]

this is our dining room/my studio. in the morning i pull the curtain open and sit down to work. and at night when i’m done for the day i can pull it close and unwind. my studio used to be in the basement and i really craved being up here in the natural light. i’m finding that more influences from nature are popping up in my work since i’ve moved up here.

this is my favorite piece in our apartment. the tord boontje midsummer night light in white. tord boontje is one of my favorite designers and i draw so much inspiration in my own work from this piece. the owl plate was a wedding gift a friend got for us in portugal. and the print is from third drawer down. (it was way too pretty to use as a dish towel)

i really wanted wallpaper for this room but couldn’t afford anything i was looking at. so i decided to hand paint, and silver leaf a pattern of my own design. i am in love with this mustard color and i think bathrooms are for trying out a bold look. a couple months ago i got lena corwin’s printing by hand book and learned how to make my own stamp for hand printing. the pear/tear drop shape was a stamp i made and the vines are hand-painted and silver-leafed.

this is our 1st floor bathroom. i painted it this fresh mint color. the shower curtain is marimekko and the print is from golden hen press.

our porch is our salvation. it doubles our living space in warmer months. we basically live and entertain friends out here for 6 months out of the year. my favorite thing this year was the bunny tail grass i grew from seed and my organic herb garden. sadly our “porch season” is ending but i think we have a couple days left. the porch furniture is from a thrift store. i re-painted them and stained/sealed the wood. the table was a bookcase i found in the alley and re-fashioned it into a table. the white standing planter is from cb2, and the hurricanes are from crate & barrel.


our bedroom in downstairs. we built the room ourselves. built a frame, hung the drywall, mudded, sanded, primed, and painted. (phew!) it is a very small bedroom which we like. it feels cozier to us. we also need every square inch of the space behind this room for jon’s studio, and our video production studio for studio thread. here is our lovely cat megabyte (mega). the weather is getting a little colder now and soon she will be all the way under these covers. the quilt was a wedding gift, the light blue duvet is marimekko, the white & blue pillowcase is also marimekko (and i’m just now realizing just how much marimekko stuff we have…) the yellow pillow case is from ikea.

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  • Wow, Sarah, I love your dining room/workspace. I’m moving into a new studio space for my small production company in San Francisco this week, and your mix of nature and modern shapes is inspiring! Also LOVE the tabby on the bed with all the patterned fabrics. The thing I’ll miss most when I move into the studio is my tabby! Great space, congrats!

  • I love the porch and I can’t believe you painted the wallpaper yourself. The yellow and silver are gorgeous together! Thanks for the tour- it’s fab!

  • Wonderful home full of DIY!
    I really love the quilt on your bed, fantastic choice of color, what a nice gift!

  • thx everyone! i have to mention that the slick bulge pieces (2nd photo from bottom) are by my wonderful friend susan dwyer (of up in the air somewhere http://upintheairsomewhere.com/). i love my home studio but susan and i are both rapidly outgrowing our respective home work spaces & we’re looking for a studio space to share. fingers crossed we’ll find something in the new year. :) it’s true i would miss our cat during the day.

  • Wow… I love the industrial meets warm and homey feeling of your home Sarah! Such inspiration! Your beautiful quilt makes me want to sew one myself (though I’ve never attempted such a feat before). Love it!

  • I love love love this place! I just recently picked out gray and yellow to paint in our apartment. And I just love the silver leaf pattern over the yellow. I might just have to come up with a lovely graphic to add some interest in our place. Also! I have that same IKEA yellow circle comforter!! :)

  • aw shucks. thx for all the sweet notes everyone! i’m so glad the handpainted wallpaper is a hit. last week i did a diy metallic wrapping paper post on the d*s guest blog. if you are interested in doing something like this in your home i would follow those directions & do pick up the lena corwin printing by hand book because it’s very lovely and informative. :) (+ yes that ikea yellow comforter was $10 or something?! how could i not get it….)

  • LOVE the mustard wall stenciled bathroom. i don’t know why it didn’t cross my mind before to do that instead of scouring for the perfect wall paper. so inspired right now…thanks!

  • I have been seeking out wallpapers forever now trying to decide on a pattern, cost, etc and your bathroom has truly inspired me to try and do my own!

  • I love your Marimekko shower curtain and have been searching for the same one for a few months – I feel I have checked every site possible. Do you have any hints on where I can find it?

    Your space is beautiful.

  • hi tracy. thanks. :) i had the same problem with the the shower curtain. i asked a clerk at cb2 one day if they had one and luckily they had one left that someone had returned. that was awhile ago though. but possibly an ebay/craigslist search? i believe the marimekko pattern is called “larch”. good luck. :)

  • Naturally the apt is beautiful. My boyfriend loved the dining chairs and liked the bulges on the wall. It matches the one in my kitchen.

  • The “Larch” shower curtain is by Unison (not Marimekko). I also believe the blue pillow case on the bed is Unison. Just FYI for those who were searching for that shower curtain.

  • Thank you so much for the info on the larch shower curtain by Unison. I spoke to customer service at CB2 and they directed me to the C&B outlet store in Naperville, IL. They are the only place it is still available. I ordered mine today and they have a few more if anyone else has been looking for it. The phone number is 630-357-1155. It is also on sale now for $24.95.