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Interiorssneak peeks

In Chicago, a Vibrant Century-Old Apartment

by Garrett Fleming

Views of the Chicago, IL skyline, a gentle breeze whipping through the windows, walls coated in bright colors — C’ne and James’ apartment has all that and more. With so much to offer, you’d think this gem of a home would have been hard to find, but the two-bedroom place fell right into their lap. When a friend of James’ was moving out, the pair jumped on the opportunity to snag this 100-year-old treasure before it was officially on the market. What luck!

The cozy retreat was clearly meant for these two. Even the previous tenants’ paint job felt right. The brilliant, yellow walls offer the perfect backdrop for collected souvenirs and inspiring artwork. Overall, the couple’s design goal was to bring to life a “minimal and functional space” where they could both unwind with a movie and create. Having the ability to comfortably pursue passion projects is an aspect of their Pilsen-neighborhood home that the family absolutely doesn’t take for granted. C’ne is currently working in collage to explore “femininity using Time magazines from the 1940s as well as magazines from today’s media.” She’s not the only creator in the house, though. James’ conceptual artwork explores technology and how it blends with humanity. He says his podcast Open Ended is “where we figure out how humans blend with tech from the black perspective.” Knowing how ingenious and driven these two are, it comes as no surprise that the out-of-the-box thinkers live in such a fun home. I am so thrilled we get to share it with you all today. Enjoy! —Garrett

Photography by Erica Anthony

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James is an avid cyclist. What a pleasant surprise that the apartment already had a bike rack installed for him!
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The rug was inherited from a friend, and the large windows allow for an abundance of natural light.
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The Chicago Transit Authority poster was given to James by a CTA employee. The train stops had changed and as the employee was swapping out the poster for an updated one, James convinced him that he should take it off his hands.
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C'ne and James sit below a growing collection of photos depicting their eight years together. The illustration of the couple is by Jana Kinsman and Doodlebooth.
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The living room's built-in bookshelf was a major selling point for the family. James' grandmother's jewelry, records from C'ne's father and a handmade bouquet by C'ne decorate the shelves. The portraits of James' parents serve as a constant reminder of the power of marriage and love.
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Cold brew coffee and technology – two of this family's favorite things – come together to answer the question "What we love most about our home is..."
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The chalkboard that sits right inside the back door is the perfect place for James and C'ne to write each other kind, little notes before they each leave the house.
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Artwork by Chicago's Amir George and Irina Zadov overlooks the brilliant kitchen.
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A dish towel by artists at the ACRE Residency is displayed as a tapestry above the kitchen sink.
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C'ne's side of the home office is decorated with bits and bobs that inspire her.
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The wall's ever-growing collection of artwork features a print by Mikey Burton.
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James designs products and broadcasts his podcast from this desk beneath art pieces by friends and family memorabilia. Notes he and C'ne write one another often find themselves displayed on the office wall as well.
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The office's wall is peppered with a slew of eye candy including the work of Amy Schwartz and Lauren Gallagher. Simple nails create the illusion that the couple's bags and coats are floating in the air.
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Under-bed storage was the most logical solution for the quaint bedroom. Ceramics and glassware from a friend in Mexico City adorn the windowsill. On the wall lives the Holstee manifesto. It's "a lovely reminder to read after waking up," James says.
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The mixed-media artwork by Robbyn Yuen was a wedding gift.
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The apartment's floor plan.

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