Friday, August 28, 2020

Our Seattle Studio

As I've been doing with most everything Seattle-related, I posted a full video walk-through of our studio on Instagram. I felt silly doing it. Halfway through I thought, who actually cares about this?

Home sweet home! We are renting a basement studio from a nice family. So far, it's been heaven.

But honestly, I've been getting tons of feedback from people wanting to experience this move vicariously. I guess it's not everyday you get to follow someone as they move across the country during a pandemic, dramatically downsizing throughout the process.

Click to see the tour, saved in my IG highlights. If you want to see the outdoors and the view, watch the video.

Like I said in the video, Matt and I sold our house in April. During the closing process, we got rid of basically all our furniture and "extras" we had collected over the years; we had a three-bedroom, two-bath, two-car garage house and moved (temporarily) into a two-two condo. If you've lived in the same place for awhile, you know this is true: if you have the space, you inevitably fill it.

During our stay in the condo, we had to decide what else to purge. We ended up giving away two of our nice rugs and our 60" Plasma TV and got rid of the rest of our furniture. Basically, the only furniture we brought with us was our mattress, curio cabinet, ottomans, and a small dining set (which we ended up getting rid of once we arrived).

Matt wrangling our mattress.
Everything we own fit into this UPACK and our two Minis.
We had to wait a couple days after arriving to get to our UPACK, and once we had the boxes unloaded into the studio, some low-level panic set in. I had a feeling we'd make it work, but the job ahead seemed immense.

We told Scott, who had helped us unload, "You're going to go home and tell Robby, I don't know how they're going to do it."

"Noooo I won't! You've got this!" Scott protested. (He absolutely did, but the look on his face when he saw the finished studio was vindication enough.)

Arranging boxes under the bed. Storage is key in a studio!

We arrived in Seattle the evening of Friday, August 14. We started unloading the UPACK on August 17 and had it done by Saturday, the 22nd. Basically, we worked from morning until 1am every day for a week to get things put away, and now it's perfect and everything we wanted!

Here is our storage hallway before and after: 

The hallway is our entryway. Turn right and you see our storage (and the only place we're hanging Chattajack or running medals). Turn left - behind the door - and you see our shoe storage. (I have my "indoor"/work shoes in my closet.)

The studio is 430 square feet. To compare, our house was 1640. I am honestly amazed by what a good job we did downsizing, and I think if pressed, we could even downsize more. Not that I feel we will...Really, this is all the space we need. It's pretty perfect.

After coming in from the storage hallway, you walk directly into the kitchen. It's small, but we've got enough counter space. One perk of a small kitchen is how easy it is to put dishes away! I also love cooking on a gas range...I'm a little surprised at what a difference it makes!
We ended up getting rid of our dining set, which was bigger than the one already in the studio.
The pantry is directly across from the table, and beside it is the bathroom. Again, it's small but not cramped, and the shower is a full-size updated shower.
From the edge of the kitchen, looking left, is our living room. We recovered the couch and are borrowing the dresser, which we set up to divide the "living room" from the "bedroom." I've also re-covered the footrests now.
Our washer/dryer! This is what sold me on this studio, because it's hard to find an in-unit, free washer/dryer (as opposed to shared coin laundry in most places). Matt was sold by the short walk to the lake.
Matt built me a custom floating desk because the one I wanted from Ikea was out of stock. I needed an extremely narrow desk to fit the space and searched for days for the perfect one. This ended up being a much better solution. Now I'm just waiting on my chair to arrive! The plant, Dolly, was a housewarming gift from Scott and Robby.
Turning right from the kitchen, you face the "bedroom". Here is a view of Matt's side; these cubes are absolutely perfect for us! Also featured: the new duvet cover, finally!
The bookshelf and Matt's closet are on my side of the bed. My closet is across from the bathroom and has a curtain closure. We're going to get a curtain for Matt's, too.

While some of our favorite paintings won't come out of storage, and I had to get rid of the majority of my abundant book collection, we really have what we love and what we need, and there is a freedom in getting rid of everything you don't absolutely love and need and coming to the realization that you still have so much. (There's privilege in that as well.)

I jokingly told my dad that all it took for me to learn to put things away and be tidy was living in a tiny house. But really, I'm taking so much pride in keeping things nice in the studio! It makes the space feel so welcoming.

We also have use of the yard, which is a nice perk!

Now that we've moved in, we can finally begin to enjoy being in our new city. We've moved three times in the last six months; I'm looking forward to staying put for awhile.



  1. I am SOOOOO stoked for you guys. I just wish I was right across the lake from you instead of right across the country. :'(

    1. You can always come back here! We are trying to convince everyone we know to move here with us!

  2. You did a great job turning the small space into a very nice living arrangement! Looks great!