After a year of requests to see my bedroom, I decided to try out interior photography and share my bedroom story with snippets. My bedroom is characterized as a Washitsu (和室)- a Japanese style unadorned bedroom with exposed wooden framing and sliding doors inlaid with washi.

When looking for a home,  I look for 3 qualities in a bedroom: 1) A good window that brings in abundant, diffused light into the bedroom, 2) Storage space for my culinary and design equipment, 3) The location being conveniently close to a grocery store and metro station. Back in February 2015, I found this handsome bedroom of rich wood, veneer, and washi inlaid walls. This bedroom fulfilled all my needs and is also a convenient 5 minute walk from my favorite design stores, culinary specialty store, and bookstore including Spiral Market, Muji, Idee, Itoya, Tomizawa and Tsutaya. After negotiating for a reasonable rent with the tall, sincere Japanese architect house owner,  I quickly packed everything in my previous 7m² apartment and carried everything through the rain to this 10m² bedroom.

My main table is what we call a contemporary Kotatsu(こたつ): it sits low and is equipped with a heating element underneath the top. Since I don’t like sitting on the floor, I prefer to sit on the basket stool and use this table for painting, photography, and reading during cold winters.

The tokonoma (床の間), the recessed alcove, is traditionally used for flower arrangements and hanging scrolls. Naturally instead, it became my ritual space for me to pick outfits and apply makeup before work, in between meetings, and occasional events.

Now that I’ve settled in, switched from being an architect to an interior designer, I’ve learned to maximize minimal space, to make my furniture multi-functional, to embrace the formal qualities of Japanese wooden framework and soften it with Scandinavian patterns and textiles. I’ve donated and collected pieces over time, altered and decorated bits every weekend. Home decorating and designing is never a finished project, and it’s liberating for me to freely roam with my creativity in my bedroom. My bedroom is this calm sanctuary with existing Japanese furniture and accumulated gifts from friends and family all over the world. These historical pieces remind me of my roots and surrounding myself with these warm, meaningful pieces gives me a sense of closure wen I feel lost and overwhelmed in a bustling Tokyo.

Details of the mix:

Customized Idee readymade curtains.

Bed sheets from mom, Muji pillows, Loft pillowslip cover.

Clothes and shoes from Zara, Rope Picnic, Uniqlo, Lemaire, Banana Republic, Fed International, Parare, Randa, Pura Bianca.

On the cabinet daily essentials: Matsuyama Alternative face lotion, MIMC eyeliner, Anastasia brow palette, Kiehls ultra facial cream, Shiseido BB cream, RMK lip balm, Ooshima Tsukbaki hair oil, Muji herbal bath salts.

Pearl necklace birthday present from mom, Kanazawa handcarved wooden piece from a local landscape architect.

On bedside table: Yumiko iihoshi espresso cup, Kinfolk home issue, Muji FOUND notebook, black Pilot gift pen from Itoya.

On the Kotatsu: Honey from my brother in Paris, Muji calculator, Design magazines and Bow Wow book from Tsutaya, Handmade wooden coasters from Maruni workshop.