Monday, February 17, 2014

Apartment Upgrade

In Scarborough, I live in a studio apartment. It is something that I always wanted to experience. Some folks like to have a room for everything: bed-room, living-room, bath-room, etc. For some reason, studio apartments are hardly ideal for "roomy section oriented" people. For one, it is an open-concept area with a lot of light, not very claustrophobic, very spacious and an organizational challenge for disorganized people. However, I love that you do save on electricity, I mean one light can illuminate the entire place and there are no "hidden" corners, which makes it easy to find insects like roaches and spiders without feeling like, "I really hope that spider is NOT in this bedroom."

On television channels like HGTV, the viewers are assaulted with terms like "out-dated", or "I wanted hard-wood floors and not laminate" or "this bathroom is tiny" or my favourite, "we will have to renovate this house to put our touches" (even though the home may be move-in ready and the appliances are brand-new). I still love HGTV though, especially, Property Brothers, Love It or List It, Hawai'i Life and House Hunters Intl. I decided to chuck all the renovations and new furniture and whatnot and work with what I have right now:
Its not all white...

Yep, this took me about 30 - 45 mins to plot, measure and recreate and on the right you would see the "cake soap" version of me.

Below is what I dreamt about, still with my original furniture and with a bit of subtractions and additions:
Check out the "Fireman" bed area above the dressing room.

"Tiny" bathroom with dressing area, separated by sliding barn door.

Upgraded kitchen with room to entertain friends.

Dressing room under the bed area.o
Living room layout next to entry.

This look may not be appealing to Caribbean locals, but I can see foreign visitors tackling a layout like this, and there is room for an average-sized dog or cat. 

Let me know what you think on FB under Lisa Marie or below in the comments.

2014©Lisa Marie Bonaparte

Saturday, February 15, 2014

New Home Design

Island living. I can't say it is perfect, but it is certainly challenging.

Tobago is a completely different culture, in terms of the people. They love their heritage and to a certain extent the older heads are still respected. While I live in the city, interestingly I prefer the country life here. In some parts, like L'Anse Fourmi, I am reminded of the stories my mom would tell me. She did not grow up in Tobago, but the simple living as a little girl growing up among boys, helps me to visualize how she lived in the 1960's Point Fortin.

L'Anse Fourmi is very quiet and a bit underdeveloped. The villagers are very close and on a Sundays it is endearing to take a walk and talk to some of the villagers there. Did you know that some of the eldest people in Tobago live in L'Anse Fourmi and Charlotteville. These are not rich folks, but they are wealthy in wisdom, health and experience.

Now you have a personal account of a Tobadadian (copyrighted). I might add that unless you have a taste for adventure, you would never really learn Tobago... you have to get up and get out!

I did another home. The idea stemmed from a recent disappointment and I had to channel that energy somewhere. It has some pretty unusual features and too many windows. Right now, we are living at a time where we need to have some sort of cooling system, or boiled alive. I call this design the Double-Tapper. First, I took too long to finish it (I did not even design the doors and put in a gate), secondly, I want to upgrade my current apartment design to maximize the space, I will post these soon.

Take a look below and tell me what you think!

I almost forgot, it has: 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, living and dining, kitchen, washroom and storage, double parking, patio, and an office. I did not take much measurements but I estimate its about 2,300 sq ft.



Kitchen/Dining area and living room

Dining area and stairs to the bedrooms

Scene from bedroom 1

Bathroom 1 
Lisa Marie Bonapartte©2014