The last week of winter holiday before the second semester is here and I am not looking forward to the change in my day’s flow. Today I write this at 9am, but by next week I’ll be sitting in a lecture hoping the professor says something I won’t already know/disagree with/find uninteresting. When I’m home my day starts at 8am, flipping through feeds—thanks to CES this year there is plenty to look at and wonder ‘why does this stupid product exist’—and then casually meandering downstairs for breakfast. I usually write on my MacBook at the kitchen table, rarely at my desk anymore. I thought I would do a little room tour, mostly of my desk, in hopes it would inspire me to actually use it more than I have grown to.
My room was painted white last year (wow it’s 2015 now) and at times I find it too stark but with a few carefully placed curiosities everything feels warm and reassuring. A painting sits above my desk; a constant mystery in itself. I found it at a flea market, buying it at the time having become enamoured—and then disappointed—in Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch. In the corner is the artists’s name, Maurice Utrillo, but I have yet to find any image of this painting on the Internet. Similar pieces, yes, but nothing the same. If he did paint it, where is the original? And if he did not, why would someone with such talent pass it off as another artist? Its history is as mysterious as the murky Parisian street it depicts, and I can’t help but smile at the irony.
My desk is a simple IKEA build-it-yourself piece, with a black top and silver legs. The chair, also from IKEA, is in a great state of disrepair with a crack in the moulded plastic, but I don’t mind one bit. A black lamp, again from IKEA, sits to the left.
For years my iMac was my constant tool, but for school I bought a MacBook Pro Retina and my iMac is used less and less. I cannot bring myself to sell it, so there it sits awaiting my ever-occasional use. I use a Magic Trackpad and Apple bluetooth keyboard with it, but the batteries never last.
A brown-glass bottle sits with three thin branches rested inside; they add height, providing a visual transition from desk to painting. Wedged against the wall rests my MacBook in a leather sleeve from Hong Kong, a new white Poppin notebook for class, and the latest copy of MR PORTER newspaper. A white bin with black micro-squares holds receipts and important documents: on top rest my wallet in black leather, sunglasses from Warby Parker in black, new Nixon headphones in grey, old Beats headphones in black, and Spicebomb by Viktor & Rolf.
On the other wall rests my bookcase, black from IKEA. I have spun the books around, more content to see the shades of cream and white than mismatched spines. With so many I just toss them in haphazardly wherever I can fit them: I love books, and even though I have read all of them I cannot see myself ever donating them. Fifty points to your respective house if you recognize the series on the left of the uppermost shelf.
I recently finished Fashionable Selby by Todd Selby which was a fantastic read: every page is a new perspective, and I found it infinitely inspiring to see the ways different artists create. On the right is a stack of cookbooks and vintage copies of National Geographic, on the left rest more tomes on Alexander McQueen, Lady Gaga, and a Donna Hay cookbook which was an impulse buy at $3. My three succulents—down from four at Easter because I am awful at plants—live in galvanized metal pots.
The left of my bookcase sits a chair my brother bought me last August at a yard sale. It plays host to an ever-changing display of random knick-knacks I throw onto it, and though random, they always seem to have something in common. Here a brown and grey scarf rest on the back, a copy of Alexander McQueen: Savage Beauty, my copy of A Kitchen In France by Mimi Thorisson (which I am in love with), and a magnifying glass my mother bought me for my birthday a few years ago. A bag from Zara sits to the left with a pair of pants I haven’t yet worn: I just love the navy and gold of the bag too much to empty it.
Between bookcase and chair rest my white Adidas shoes, or whatever pair I’m currently enamoured with. Sadly with winter I don’t think they’ll get much use.