interior design is something i can help but think of. my most favourite shop is, probably, nicola farhi home in london. i love her rustic but contemporary chic taste. still, i imagine it’d be so boring if one was super rich and would go and buy anything he/she liked there. i could find something similar and cheaper somewhere else. and most importantly, to me, like other interior design enthusiasts, finding things is more pleasurable than buying things, which is great about making one's own home, right?
today, i show you around my pad – my home, humble but sweet home of my very own. i’ve been living here for 3 years and 5 months now. i really love being at home. i never like the synthetic materials that are used for the floor, the walls and the ceiling in my flat, however. this flat was already renovated by its former owner when it was to be on the market. the textures are awful and tasteless. i have to close my eyes to them, even though i actually see them every single moment. i guess i’ve just learned to get used to something i even dislike. it's true that every cloud has a silver lining. the views from my windows and balconies are not that bad.
as you might know, no japanese goes into their home in shoes: we take off our shoes at the entrance hall. so, our shoe cabinet is usually big. not like one that carrie bradshow of s.a.t.c, has in her new manhattan apartment, though. my shoe cabinet, which was originally fitted in the entrance hall, was ugly enough to hurt my eyes. i painted it pistachio green last summer. it isn’t as stylish as carrie’s, but at least, it looks all right to my eyes now.
i also painted my old thonet chair (i don’t know if it’s real one or thonet-esque one) and the pine desk from muji. my semi-double bed is also from muji. i work from my bedroom office, overlooking the sea of grey-tile-roofed houses of my neighbourhood. i wish i had a bigger desk, though you may not see this tiny desk cluttered. the white canvas behind the desk is a minimalist oil painting i bought from badrol, my artist friend from malaysia. i treasure it. but i’d use it as a backdrop sometimes because of the bad walls when i take photographs. sorry, bad!
in my bed room, i treasure the old french pine chest of drawers. i found it ages back at a furniture shop in kentish town, london. its kind of clumsy way that the drawers had been repaired stole my heart – so sweet. so charming. i bought it myself on the spot. i shipped it when i returned to tokyo from london several years later. most of the stuff placed on the chest are my finds at london’s various flea markets. and, you see the patchwork quilt? i made it myself. i am pretty good at sawing (but useless when it comes to sawing-machine) and knitting. oh, the throw. i am fond of this tartan of rare colours. i bought it during my visit to inverness, scotland a long time ago.
as for my living room, the sofa and ottoman are also from a local muji shop. yes, i’ve been a muji fan since its launch. in fact, i worked for muji mook as a writer. but the thing is, muji never does a great variety of furniture design. ikea hadn’t re-launched in japan yet when i moved in. and now, more ikea stuff is likely to occupy my flat, which has been simply furnished so far. i don’t like being surrounded by too many things basically. so, my books in the bookcase shown are not everything i have. i’ve hidden the rest in my closet. the two, tall and short, perfume bottles of the eiffel tower were brought back from my paris trip back in the early 80’s. its minty colour doesn’t fade forever. well, i hope.
the colour scheme for my interior is always white as a base colour (ignore the flavourless walls for this moment), usually adding shade of green, baby blue and brown. i feel most comfortable with white and pale blue. i once (when i was married and lived in yokohama) fitted white wall-to-wall carpet in my all white bedroom where white and pale blue bed linens coordinated with it. that was a mistake. the white carpet got grey-sh only after a few months. my kids were wild little creatures back then. i have no problem now. except the budget. i can’t afford renovation. at least, i can be thinking of painting all the walls pure white this summer or next.
adding red, as an accent colour, to my kitchen plus dining space has been my first ever adventurous attempt and it’s in progress. i’d like to show it to you when completed. meanwhile, i have other 2 tatami rooms with a fitted closet respectively. i use one for my guests (usually for my daughter) and i put my muji pine wardrobe (2 units) for another. most of my clothes not in season are in muji pp unit drawers hidden in the closet, though. as it happened, my lifestyle is not typically japanese. still, i love to keep the tatami rooms in my pad.
that’s all, folks. thank you!