Friday, February 28, 2014

Before: Our Apartment in Kuwait

It was recently pointed out that I have never really given a “before” home tour of our Kuwait apartment - the way it looked when we arrived. Since I am planning to do a “Before & After” of each room, I thought it might be fun to show where it all began.

The great/terrible thing about teaching abroad is that more often than not your salary includes a "furnished" living space. The great thing about this is that you don't have to try to find a place to rent in a foreign country where you may know little to none of the language (you also don’t have to pay rent). The terrible thing about this is that you have no choice in the matter, you get, what you get and you don’t, throw a fit. End of story.

B and I were very lucky upon moving to Kuwait. Since we were married we were eligible to live in the ‘family’ building and since we were hired early we received an apartment near the top of the building. Therefore, we walked into an 11th floor, 3-bedroom, 3-bathroom apartment. It was huge. I thought we would never fill it. (Oh, how wrong I was.)

It came “furnished” with some essentials: a bed, two end tables, a couch, a loveseat, a chair, a (gorgeous) dining room table, two dressers, a coffee table, a TV stand (no TV), an oven, a fridge, a washer, and some cupboard space. Beside the bed and the table, everything was very mismatched and showed its age.

The furniture was situated throughout the house so as to give you an idea of what room was what. The dining room table was located as you walked in the front door, the kitchen was located down a hallway past that, as was the laundry room and a bedroom with a bathroom.

The other half of our large living space held the couches, end/coffee tables and TV stand. Beyond this space, was a room identical to the first bedroom, but with a bed in it, there was also a guest bath and a small room at the end that became known as the office. There were no closets in any of the rooms but there were these five ginormous, ugly, but practical, wardrobes.

The absolute best part of our apartment was the view. One wall of the living room was floor to ceiling windows. It was awesome. Even with the construction, the apartment buildings, the roads and the smog, the view was fantastic. Even better we could see the sea touching the sky. This view became the inspiration for the living room. I wanted to bring that sense of endlessness into our space.

The absolute worst part of our apartment was the color. Everything was a version of tan. The walls, the floors, the couches, the pine furniture, the curtains, it was like drowning in sand. I understood the logic, tan doesn’t show the sand that coats everything, but I knew I couldn’t live in this sea of tan. I needed color.

And so began the transformation…

If you like this post, then check out:
How to Make a House a Home
Before & After: My Craft Room
Before & After: Our Bedroom

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