What Makes the Best Living Space in Chicago? Here’s 5 Non-Negotiables

Published: September 22nd, 2013

What is the difference between a “good” living space and a “great” one in Chicago?

The best Chicago spaces are not only nice to look at and functional, but draw residents and guests in and make them feel at home. They are friendly and bold, welcoming and personal, like the city itself.Getting there requires attention to some intangible qualities that distinctly express who you are.  

In Chicago, a great living space…

Creates Space for Art

Whether it’s paintings, posters, or sculpture, your choices in art personalize your home just as public sculpture personalizes Chicago. Make space for them. Place art in a way that allows one to see it without clutter and distraction. If you love the piece, make sure you place it where you can enjoy it every day. After all, we gave Picasso an entire city plaza!

Uses Furniture Intelligently

When placing furniture, consider how people flow through the home, what you want to see most when you sit in it, how you want the room itself to function, and who will use it. If the home has a beautiful Lake Michigan view, orient the furniture to maximize it. If you want the space to entertain well, create more intimate seating for conversation. If you want to hold onto an old chair or lamp for sentimental reasons, consider updating it. A lamp can be restored. A chair can be re-upholstered and accessorized. Get creative!

Is Clean and Ordered

Keeping a clean living space isn’t just for the thirty minutes prior to a guest’s arrival while Flight of the Bumblebees plays in the background.Rather, it’s maintaining a sense of order and calm regardless of the style of your home. Victorian homes filled with artwork and accessories can tolerate more clutter than a mid-century minimalist one, but both require attention to order. It allows inhabitants to rest and think more clearly and provides a sense of welcome and respect for guests.  

Is Bold

As Chicagoans, boldness is in our genes. Boldness created everything from our sweeping 17-mile lakefront to the architectural ingenuity of Frank Lloyd Wright, Louis Sullivan and Mies van der Rohe. In keeping with that, experiment with new colors. Consider more dramatic lighting. Re-purpose old furniture, Use non-traditional materials. Chicago is innovative and exciting; let your home be equally so.

Is Designed for Life

best living space chicago

Chicago is a city designed for life. Our neighborhoods are exciting and welcoming, our style is unpretentious, and our public spaces invite connection. Shouldn’t our homes do the same?   So make every space comfortable and customized, tailored to your needs. Infuse it with your personality and even your quirks. Create a home that invites curiosity and provides a sense of place. We sing “Sweet Home, Chicago”  because this place really is home. Apply the same principles that work for this city to interior design.

Make your house a “sweet” Chicago home.

This post was most recently updated in September 2017.