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My Sunlit Studio In Toronto’s Fashion District Costs $2,024 Per Month

In Refinery29’s Sweet Digs, we take a look inside the sometimes small, sometimes spacious homes of millennials. Today, social media manager Samantha Skeen shows us how she turned her Toronto studio into a millennial pink boho dream.
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As someone who works in the fashion industry, it makes perfect sense that Samantha Skeen would reside in, and take inspo from, Toronto’s historic fashion district. Located across the street from the city’s Stackt Market — a series of shipping containers repurposed to house boutiques featuring the wares of up-and-coming Canadian designers — Skeen’s studio apartment is similarly redesigned to make the most of what she has. And the social media manager is definitely making it work. 
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Her studio looks like it’s lifted from a dream boho home Pinterest board. First of all, there’s a lot of pink. From the iridescent dishes, to the splashes of blush on canvases painted by Skeen, to the rose-gold pineapple in her kitchen, to the "babe"-emblazoned glass that holds the fluffy pens in her workspace, the colour is used like a neutral. And that’s entirely intentional. “I would describe my style as minimalist and boho, and with a pop of pink,” Skeen says. “I definitely like all those three things; they work together.”
Photographed by Polina Teif.
Despite the fact that Skeen lives in a studio (which she rents for $2,024 a month, a price that worked when she signed the lease a year ago, but, she says, feels a little steep now), you wouldn’t know it unless you were looking at a blueprint of the space. The Torontonian has taken care to create the feeling of separation, breaking up her bachelor apartment in creative ways. “In order to make the space work for myself, I had to strategize on ways to create divisions,” she says. This includes hanging sheer curtains between her kitchen and bedroom to create the illusion of a wall and give the space a dreamy feel. 
Photographed by Polina Teif.
When it comes to her workspace, Skeen has created an area that helps her get in the zone, placing her desk close to the balcony’s natural light (and her prized Birds of Paradise, affectionately nicknamed Plantie by her niece), but facing the wall and surrounded by artwork to keep her focused.
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If the majority of Skeen’s space is practical, her favourite part of the condo is all for enjoyment, with Skeen creating a spa-like experience in her larger-than-normal bathroom. Complete with bath bombs and soaps, eucalyptus in the shower, and a repurposed wooden chair (originally a dark wood, but painted white by Skeen to add to the aesthetic), the space, she says, was “set up as a little mini oasis."

Skeen has both an eye for style, as well as a knack for finding an amazing deal. The frequent thrifter has decked out her home with unique and luxe-looking finds, like an '80s-era white vase that sits on the floor in her bedroom and a dark wood jewellery box, which originally retailed for $200 and Skeen bought for $9.99 that serves as a one-of-a-kind side table.
Repurposing objects as furniture is a specialty of Skeen’s, who’s also not afraid of a little sentimentality. In her bedroom, she keeps a jar full of champagne corks, all signed with messages from friends from parties in the before times. “I think that was a nice touch, just to reminisce and go back and see what happened during that time when we popped that champagne,” Skeen says. 
Photographed by Polina Teif.
The art Skeen has decorated her home with is also a representation of different moments of her life. Aside from a painting by her then two-year-old niece hanging in a place of pride in her WFH space, Skeen drew or painted most of the art. The most-powerful pieces are found in her bedroom, where Skeen has framed two of her drawings of statues in Emancipation Park in Kingston, Jamaica, where her family is from. “It’s a statue called Redemption Song by Laura Facey,” she explains. “She made these sculptures basically to represent the end of slavery. I definitely wanted to bring that component of my Jamaican heritage into my space so that way I always remember where I come from.”
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