chinook2006's Profile

Display Name: chinook2006
Member Since: 4/3/09

Latest Comments...

When I first moved to DC 6 years ago, I loved the city so very much. I loved the free museums and the neighborhood character and not having to own a car... But now the stress of constantly spending an obscene percentage of my income on rent is starting to wear on me. I've been eyeing jobs in other smaller cities (I've discovered that I really like Richmond, VA), but now that my boyfriend is looking to start grad school here in DC in the spring, and I just got a really nice promotion, it seems like I'll be here for another few years. I keep trying to reclaim the spark of my love for this city, but the rents are *really* getting me down.

Living In The Most Expensive Cities:
How Long Can We Keep This Up?

9/21/12 10:47 AM

The original-to-the-1930s black and white pinwheel tile is one of the vintage touches that sold me on my current apartment. Lovelovelove black and white tile! I had some plumbing issues in my bathroom last month, and one of my main worries wasn't how long it was going to take to fix, but whether or not they were going to have to tear up the floor (and thus my wonderful original tile) to do so! Luckily, they only had to drill one tiny hole behind the toilet, so my precious tile is safe. :-)

Always a Classic: The Many Faces of Black & White Floor Tile
5/17/12 03:38 PM

My last apartment was a rowhouse that had been divided into three apartments, and we all shared wireless internet. We all chipped in toward the cost, and it worked really well for the two years I was there. But in such a small building, you definitely always know what your neighbors are up to, so I'm not sure I'd do that in a larger building where you might not know your neighbors as well.

Neighborly Behavior: Do You Share or Borrow Wi-Fi?
4/18/12 10:19 AM

My mattress is totally due for replacement--it's a bottom-of-the-line Ikea thing that I bought 6 years ago when I was just out of college and moving into my first apartment. The thing is horrifically uncomfortable, but now that I have a real job I can actually afford a real mattress! Hoping to make that happen in the next few months.

My pillows are a couple of months old--the ones before them, though, were from college, so going on 10 years old when I finally replaced them. Ugh!

When Did You Last Replace Your Pillows & Mattress? Reader Survey
3/28/12 10:53 AM

Gushing about how cute or wonderful an apartment is to whoever is showing it has worked wonders for me in getting my past two apartments (with the apartment I'm moving to in a couple of weeks, it probably helped that while I was gushing about how awesome the original glass doorknobs and black and white pinwheel tiles in the bathroom were, the other guy who was looking at the place at the same time pointed at the radiators and wanted to know what those were and what they did. *headdesk*). All other things being equal, I think most landlords would like to rent to someone who will really love the apartment (and presumable take good care of it!). And I'm in DC, which probably has one of the craziest rental markets in the country!

No Fail Ways to Land Your Dream Apartment Renters Solutions
3/19/12 01:44 PM

I've been in my current apartment for two years, but the shine had definitely started to wear off of the apartment and the neighborhood for me in the past few months (my kitchen window totally falling apart in a wind storm definitely didn't help). I'd been looking casually, but when my weekend job cut hours and my budget went from "at bit tight" to "I'm totally screwed if I get sick or anything out of the ordinary happens", I knew it was time to get serious. It took me about a month, but I found a nice apartment that's $300/month LESS than the current place and still has tons of character. I move into the new place April 1.

Had it not been for the new budget constraints, I probably would have plugged along in the current apartment for another year or so...

When Do You Know It's Time to Move?
3/19/12 01:38 PM

LOVE this house (and the couple's blog is awesome as well!) It's so nice to see people showing that you CAN honor the history of a house while still making it perfectly workable for a modern lifestyle!

Alex & Wendy's Evolving Victorian
House Tour

11/30/11 05:32 PM

I kind of adore the 'after' (but maybe that's because it's pretty much the same colors as my kitchen--white cabinets, black/dark gray counter, silver back splash) It's a great blank slate for the new owner to dress up however they want.

And in all honesty, I think the 'before' is hideous! Way too many different wood tones going on. Eww.

Before & After: From Wrecked to Airy White Kitchen
Two Thirty-Five Designs

11/30/11 05:23 PM

I like MCM with a great deal of restraint/in moderation, and as a background for other more ornate pieces. I have a MCM-inspired couch, and its clean lines make it easy to accent it with antique (and more ornate and fussy) pieces like my coffee table and side chairs.

All MCM rooms (heck, *any* room that's full of all one style!), though, make me want to run away screaming. *shudder*

Poll: What Do You Love Most about Mid-Century Modernism?
11/3/11 01:42 PM

Very nice! I love the pops of color and eclectic style! (And I always love to see what other people in DC are up to in their apartments! :-))

Sherri's "So You" Apartment
House Call

10/11/11 04:29 PM

LOVE. I love that they didn't go super modern (I HATE super modern-style bathrooms in 100+ year old houses!)

And their old bathroom looks *so* much like the bathroom I currently have in my apartment in a 100 year old rowhouse--and the after is almost exactly what I dream of being able to do if I owned the place (and had the money!)


Before & After: Andi & Dean's Master Bath on a Budget
10/3/11 01:24 PM

I definitely agree with what pretty much everyone else is saying:
-live in the apartment for a month or two before you start changing things--that will give you a chance to figure out what you can live with, and what is going to drive you nuts if you don't change.
-how long are you planning on being in the apartment? All of my previous apartments had been one-year-and-then-moving-on deals, so I did little to nothing to them. My current apartment, though, is one I plan on staying put in until I buy a place (which is a loooong way off), so I'm putting much more work into it--painting walls and kitchen cabinets, replacing lighting fixtures, putting up back splashes and shelves, and now I'm considering replacing a horrid hollow-core door (the only one not original to the 1910s in the unit!)

I'm a huge proponent of making an apartment your own, especially if you plan on staying for a few years! :-)

First Home Advice: Where Do Renters Draw the Line?
8/30/11 04:12 PM

I think it's totally a personal preference issue--what are YOU comfortable with when it comes to the condition of the neighborhood vs. building vs. apartment.

It took me almost 5 years and 5 apartments within DC to finally find the right combination for me--I tried the crappy apartment in a crappy building in a great location, I tried the gorgeous rowhouse in an awful neighborhood, I tried the okay apartment in an okay building in an okay location, etc, etc, until I finally found my current place--a great apartment in a dumpy building in a great neighborhood. The building isn't dirty or unsafe--it's just rough around the edges and a bit rundown, and this is the only way I could afford an apartment in that neighborhood. So it's totally worth it for me.

(And yeah, I totally agree with the previous posters who said they love their friends' reactions when they lead them into their awesome apartment from out in the crappy hallway. Priceless!)

Nice Apartment, Nasty Building: Is it Worth It?
8/12/11 11:50 AM

I found my first apartment mostly through sheer dumb luck. I was moving from Massachusetts to DC to start grad school, and had taken a couple of weekend trips down to look at places I'd found on Craig's List, but wasn't having much luck. I'd pretty much settled on a place that would have just been for the summer, instead of a full year, when I got a call from an apartment building I'd looked at, but which hadn't had any vacancies. They suddenly had a studio available, and did I want it? I could afford the unit, and it was within block of campus, so I took it, sight unseen.

It turns out later, the reason why apartments had suddenly opened up in that building? There had been an electrical fire, and then the city had discovered that the wiring in the building was ancient and not up to code, so they'd condemned the building until it was totally rewired. So all of the building's residents had been kicked out of their apartments for almost 3 weeks, and the company was letting people out of their leases if they wanted. This was kind of freaky to find out after I'd moved in (but at least I knew that the building had just been rewired!)

The apartment itself was crummy, but livable. I was definitely ready to get out by the time my lease was up, though, because the proximity to campus meant that the building was full of undergrads who regularly screamed at each other in the hallways at 3 in the morning and left trash all over the floor of the trash room. Ugh.

Moral of the story--actually look at an apartment before you agree to rent it! :-)

How Did You Find Your First Apartment?
8/1/11 12:27 PM

@kmk355: They were totally reasonable! And it's not actually tin, or individual tiles--it's actually panels of plastic pressed to look like tin tiles! I got it at Home Depot, and I'm pretty sure I spent less than $60 for 3 panels plus the adhesive to put them up! (So, the backsplash is the most expensive thing that I did in the kitchen, but it's still really not a "splurge"! :-))

Teresa's Cool and Clean Rental Kitchen
7/21/11 03:24 PM

@thannypants: Thank you! I keep my flatware in some white mugs that I got from Ikea ages ago (forks in one, spoons in another, knives in a third) on a shelf in my cabinets. I had to move a shelf to make the height fit, but it works well. And as far as larger knives, I actually just lay those flat in the cabinet (I actually only have two large knives--one nice multi-purpose one, and one junky one, so they don't take up too much space) :-)

Teresa's Cool and Clean Rental Kitchen
7/20/11 12:56 PM

What I love most about my apartment is the historic character--100 year old wood floors, ornate radiators, transoms above the doors, tall windows, gorgeous fireplace. My friends who helped me move in took one look at it and declared it very me. :-)

Favorite Elements: What Do You Love About Your Home?
7/8/11 11:59 AM

I have a pantry in my kitchen that doesn't have a door (I have a semi-sheer curtain hung in the doorway, but it doesn't hide the pantry contents totally) so I use some square white baskets from Ikea to corral things like pot lids, measuring cups, and utensils that I don't use as often.

Also, yeah Old School Hardware travel mug! Mount Pleasant represent! :-)

My Kitchen's 4 Most Helpful Small Organizational Tools
5/27/11 11:12 AM

The bathtub! Urgh--the thing is disgusting! The finish (which I have a sneaking suspicion is *paint*) is peeling in the bottom, revealing all sorts of nastiness! For now, I have it covered with a plastic mat, but i may eventually spring for a professional tub refinishing myself, even though I'm in a rental!

My old boss got me some wonderful bubble-bath as part of my going-away gift, but I can never use it, because there's no way I'm ever going to take a bath in that tub! Eeeew!

What Drives You Crazy In Your Bathroom?
Reader Survey

5/6/11 12:26 PM

LOVE! I love the way you worked with the quirks of an older space, while making it comfortable and combining a wide variety of styles!
Easily my favorite Small Cool so far!

Jordan's Light, Location & Vibe
4/14/11 11:56 AM