STATE of Mind // Quarantine Quarters
The idea of "home" has taken on deeper meaning in these last few months. As we burrow further into our domains, they become a part of us – or we become a part of them. We thought it would be fun to peek into your spaces and see where you're feeling safe and conjuring happiness. What do you see out your windows? Below are glimpses from across the globe of homes, apartments, studios, chicken coops, and more – each filled with so much love and life.
We can't thank you all enough for sharing your world with us. It brought us so much joy to see where you live and read your words about how you're doing. We had an overwhelming response to this instagram prompt and worked hard to narrow it down to this handful. We loved this project so much, we'll be doing it again soon.
We spend every waking moment in this room we call “the big room”. In this photo it is “clean” and peaceful. My paintings and my children’s paintings hang. Currently, it is chaotic as we have all been sleeping on the floor together in this room since everything started. We stay up late and wake up late. We are irresponsible and having fun. Home schooling is hard and my children’s brains might be suffering but I think they will look back on this time with a feeling of warmth and togetherness and comfort.
I moved in two years ago and I’ve spent every night and weekend “perfecting” it so that, if i we’re lucky, it could become a place that would turn me into a homebody. And then a pandemic! Forced homebody-ness!
Here’s the space I made for myself in our guest room since being home for quarantine. I co-run a nonprofit arts space where I usually spend my days. But now I needed to combine child care and moments of nonprofit work or personal art practice. I’m a collector of textiles and have finally given into my maximalist tendencies in my late 30s. I love to surround myself with things that are beautiful and made with love.
I just moved a month ago to a home in Portland, OR. We managed to find ourselves in a 1925 craftsman - hence the amazing built-ins! Given that we're both highly sentimental people, it's really special for us to have a way to appreciate all of our objects.
My studio is my sanctuary, a refuge from the harshness of reality, a dreamy spot to escape to and make something out of nothing. My living room is a color and pattern explosion. Making a home is my most meaningful accomplishment and I feel so grateful to be able to call this special room home.
This is my house for the past 10 years, it’s a tiny trailer in a beautiful field, close to the beach, far but just close enough to Tel- Aviv - the big city... we’ve just finished renovating it and then the Corona came... and I became closer to my house again. The field and nature around it were all empty and filled with flowers. Weird times but mostly special times.
Staying home all day has afforded me the pleasure of getting to know where the light hits my apartment best throughout the day. My kitchen faces a courtyard and doesn’t get the best light, but now I know that for a small window of time it actually glows pretty nicely. It’s become one of my favorite views.
This is my studio. It’s part of the nvrlnd studios, a non-profit group who took over an abandoned motel and turned it into affordable spaces for artists. I recently bought myself this plush pink couch and it makes me happy everyday. We’ve been able to keep using our studios because they are all private spaces and it gets thoroughly disinfected throughout the day. So very thankful to still be able to create in my favourite space.
Most of the pieces in our living room have history. The green mid century chairs, for example. My parents gave me one of them – it was originally in a mobile home fishing camp that belonged to my great grandfather. (Can we go down that rabbit hole – mid century mobile homes coming pre-furnished with such pieces?!) It was covered in green metallic pleather when I got it. I managed to find a mate to it on Etsy, and when it was shipped they literally just addressed it to Brooklyn, and I SOMEHOW found it at a Greyhound station in downtown Brooklyn sitting in a lost & found room.
We live in a pretty small house, so our patio and backyard have become extended living areas. With a 3 and under 1 year old, we are outside as much as possible! We love it because nature is the best babysitter. There’s something that changes when we go outside. If one of the kids is having a tantrum, we go outside and it magically goes away!
Here’s my favorite corner in our living room, my cathedral. And my favorite chair, «Orange Baby Velvet » (yes, we name our furniture). Looking out onto Thunder Mountain, I can’t help but gasp a bit in wonder every time I come into this room for the first time each day. The spaciousness and light that floods this space fills my heart with delight every single day.
I’ve been spending time on our back porch painting stools as well as our chicken coop. Adding color to my immediate environment has been such an enormous help to my mental health- seeing color makes me happy and being the one adding the color gives me a sense of purpose right now.
We’ve been spending most of our time in our back building that was once a mechanic’s garage, then an artist’s studio. Now it is our quarantine “getaway.” It combined with our tiny backyard gives space for our kids to run around, make art, and get dirty. On rainy days we’ll have the big doors open, listen to music, and watch the rain fall. My new ritual is to sit out there at night for about an hour by myself.
Being home everyday all day with five children & two adults during this pandemic has been emotionally exhausting, but I can’t help but feel gratitude for this unexpected gift of time with no distractions for our oftentimes busy family. We actually moved our coffee table out of the room during this stay-at-home time just to give us all a little more elbow room. We look forward to Friday family movie nights every week here-popcorn dotting the floor, blankets galore. Our well-worn and well-loved, little home down by the river.
I moved my sewing machine from the basement up into my Boudoir (the second bedroom i’ve claimed as my own) so I can make more face masks in between work stuff. The machine is my Mom’s 1968 Kenmore, still going strong.
I love how this little spot went from my perch where I would view the people outside with some separation, people watching only, and now it has been transformed into the spot where I can interact with my neighbors and participate in life outside... same spot, different perspective.
I can’t stop thinking about how hard this time would be in any other apartment I’ve lived in, and I say a daily prayer for the people living in those tiny and dark rooms now. We have 13’ ceilings and giant windows that run the length of the apartment, which let in so much light for our 120+ plant babies. It’s been magnificent watching them adjust to the spring sun and warmth. Nothing passes the days like watching a new leaf open up! They help us keep track of the days, too. I see the lavender plant dropping— it’s Wednesday. On Sunday we spend a good amount of time cleaning out dead leaves and watering the whole house. Having that schedule when there are no rules is helping keep me sane and feeling normal!
Everything in our home has been loved before by someone else and discovered while thrifting, or custom built by my partner. Plants are like family, crowding for space, growing together, and breathing deep, thanks to my house-plant delivery business @dutchovenfinds based out of the corner office in our apartment. Our 4-yr old son is big into painting and tools, so his supplies form a literal paper trail some days, he’s making art for all his uncles and aunties he can’t play with right now. I love the golden afternoon light, the green view of the park and City College, and sharing this living room space together during this time. It feels like a safe and productive creative retreat from the fear and danger outside, and it helps us have a clear head to work on projects helping others.
I take great pride in my home and it is by far my favorite place to be. Quarantine or no quarantine I always feel like I won the game when I make it back home after a day of work or play. It is a bright and cheery place full of art, plants and four legged babies that keep us sane.