One of the many joys in marriage that I’ve found is embracing my husband’s talents and the ways that he is different than me. My series ‘How to Marry a Wedding Planner’ provides snapshots of the amusement and delight I find in my marriage with a wedding planner.Steve’s twenties were spent very differently than mine. I love hearing the stories of elegant dinner parties he threw in college; and when he shows me the various décor pieces he bought in his late teens and early twenties, I can’t help but chuckle a little bit. Seriously, what college guy spends his money on fancy linens for dinner parties and high-end home décor?
I guess it worked out well for me though, the girl who spent her money at Forever 21, on hair dye and nights out with friends.
When we met, I was 25 years old and living in a quirky sixth floor walk up apartment in NYC, spending over half my monthly salary on rent. I was starting to feel like a grown up, making purchases on home furnishings (from IKEA, obviously). I vividly remember feeling like I had officially entered adulthood when I brought home a teeny tiny yellow potted orchid from a street fair on the Upper East Side. Grown-ups have orchids, I thought. Look at me, spending money on things to make my home pretty. That orchid was like a rite of passage. I was a grown up. Or so I thought. Then I married a wedding designer who opened up my world to a beautiful lifestyle. A year and a half into our marriage, we decided to make the move to Seattle from Bellingham, Wash. We had a short window of opportunity before the peak of wedding season hit, so we decided to go for it this past April. In moving, we traded in a 950 sq. foot 2-bedroom condo + commercial studio space in Bellingham for a 663 sq. foot 1-bedroom apartment in Seattle. Just a little downsize, but I’ve always liked small spaces. After we signed the lease, we visited the vacant apartment a few times together to brainstorm how we’d like to use the space. We wanted the 663 sq. feet to be a place we could work, entertain, host client meetings, relax and rest, have friends over and feel like a home. We sat on the wood floor of the empty apartment for awhile, realizing how small of a space it actually was and thought long and hard about if it’d be weird not having a big couch in the living room, but a table instead. We opted for the table. Given his career, aesthetic and love for design, it’s a given that Steve takes the lead on decorating our home. He has such a natural innate talent for decorating and can select pieces from flea markets, Restoration Hardware, Goodwill, Target and Anthropologie and put them together in a way that’s both cohesive and eclectic. On any given day, our home could be scattered with grey pumpkins from the flower market, be filled with freshly spray-painted trees, or be rearranged in some new furniture configuration. That’s what’s neat about being married to a designer, our home is a palette for creativity and design, and I love that.But what I love most about our place is that it feels cozy and like a private hideaway just for the two of us. Whenever one of us bakes anything, the yummy smells seem to stick around forever since the place is so small. And it really is small. Let’s just say that Steve and I live and work together in very close quarters. Sometimes when we’re rushing to get ready in the morning and both of us are in the bathroom, one slight misstep could easily result in a shaved off eyebrow or a severe burn by my curling wand. But, I love our 663 sq. feet and think it’s the perfect place for us. And check back soon for the recipe for these peanut butter cookies Steve made. They seriously are the best you’ll ever have.
photo credit: Matthew Land Studios