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Old 12-08-11, 11:19 AM   #1
bluefoxicy
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Check out my bedroom!

I've got new **** to show off.

Background: I am a small apartment dweller, and I shifted everything to Japanese style. Here is my bedroom! It's a work in progress, by the way.



At night, I have this setup. Shikifuton on top of Tatami with a buckwheat hull pillow. That's a Kotatsu in the middle, with a built-in electric heater--I use a ceramic room heater at night to keep temperature, and the Kotatsu when I'm awake and present. It stays warm underneath.

Yes, I have a second rice paper blind to hang ....



During the day, the futon folds into thirds and goes in the closet. A Goza mat goes on the tatami to protect them--they're meant to support the kotatsu directly, but screw that.

I need to get shoji screens, build some small furniture (shelves, a small desk for the computer), and get a kakefuton (silk-filled comforter).

This cost me...

$330 - Shikfuton
+ $50 x 2 - Buckwheat Hull pillows
+ $620 - Kotatsu
+ $260 - Kotatsu futon
+ $30 - Shoji Blinds
+ $109 x 3 - 3x6 Tatami, three of 'em.
+ $300 - kakefuton stuffed with hand-pulled silk (Don't have yet)
+ $170 x 3 - Shoji screens I'll get to set the aesthetic (and hide shelving that I'll put along the walls) (Don't have yet)

Total: $2477, plus some $500 of shipping.

Some things to consider:
  • The shikifuton is actually better than my $1000 bed; I don't toss and turn and I sleep better on it. Go figure. Sex is probably more fun on an inner spring mattress (and even more so on a water bed)--a concern for Tempurpedic memory foam mattresses as well.
  • Importantly, I live in a smaller apartment and have made maximal use of the space, rather than getting a larger apartment for $200/mo more plus added heating/air conditioning costs.
  • $2500 is a lot. If we discount the cost of furniture--say, the $1000 bed I could have not bought in the first place, a dining table I don't have room for anyway, etc.--it becomes significantly less.

I need to hang that blind, buy those shoji screens I want, and get the kakefuton....
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Old 12-08-11, 11:32 AM   #2
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Can I ask how much you pay for that sized space?
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Old 12-08-11, 11:37 AM   #3
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Well done - the nice thing about scaling back like that is it makes you realize how little you really need to be happy.

Plus if you add anything back, it's just a bonus.
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Old 12-08-11, 12:04 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluefoxicy View Post
  • The shikifuton is actually better than my $1000 bed; I don't toss and turn and I sleep better on it. Go figure. Sex is probably more fun on an inner spring mattress (and even more so on a water bed)--a concern for Tempurpedic memory foam mattresses as well.
  • Importantly, I live in a smaller apartment and have made maximal use of the space, rather than getting a larger apartment for $200/mo more plus added heating/air conditioning costs.
  • $2500 is a lot. If we discount the cost of furniture--say, the $1000 bed I could have not bought in the first place, a dining table I don't have room for anyway, etc.--it becomes significantly less.
The shikifuton looks pretty interesting. The second part about a water bed is a myth, it just makes it uncomfortable.

Having a smaller space can be really nice, for the wife and our 2 kids it makes us not buy extra crap we don't need since we have to find a place for it. The smaller heating costs like you said are a nice benefit as well.

$2500 for furniture isn't too bad especially since it's a one time cost, but I personally don't think I'd use a Kotatsu enough for it to be worth it.

I will be disappointed if you don't samurai gear when you're lounging in your apartment.
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Old 12-08-11, 12:07 PM   #5
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Looks cozy. Might want to elevate that computer monitor, though. It's not good for your neck to be looking down all the time like that.
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Old 12-08-11, 12:49 PM   #6
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Can I ask how much you pay for that sized space?
1 bedroom, I think about 760 sqft? That's 2 rooms--one some 11 x 16 and one ... I forget, 11 x 18? Plus a kitchen and a bathroom. 4 blocks from the light rail, 3.2 miles from Baltimore Inner Harbor, and right by the art college I don't go to.

$725/mo, +$60/mo for garage. I keep my gas and electric under $100/mo--more in the summer, but I can hit $60 in the fall and stay under $80 in the winter.

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The shikifuton looks pretty interesting.
On a hard floor or tatami (which compress slightly, but are still kind of like a hard wood floor... pretty solid), that futon is a firm sleeping surface. Odd, no pressure points, not all plushy and squishy, nothing I'd call comfortable--but yet it is. My understanding of comfort must be wrong.

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$2500 for furniture isn't too bad especially since it's a one time cost, but I personally don't think I'd use a Kotatsu enough for it to be worth it.
Yeah that was a good $1000 in the end. It's notable I sit on the floor and can sit in seiza comfortably. This has advantages--zabuton (cushions) for sitting on can be moved and take up little space, whereas chairs are a little...

It supplies functionality for me as several furniture pieces--a dining surface, a stationary desk, a place to play a game of Go with another person. I only need one at once. It made sense for me; and to be honest, I quite like it, both for what it is and in comparison to the typical Western rich person house with all of these things and only one being used at any given time. Western life seems to be moving back to this in other aspects--some people don't have TV anymore because they have a laptop or computer on which to watch movies, play video games, and the like.

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I will be disappointed if you don't samurai gear when you're lounging in your apartment.
I considered buying some form of Japanese garb. The kotatsu supplies heat from below, and so when wearing traditional Japanese dress it causes warm air flow up the legs and out through the neck. Convective heating of the entire body.

It is all too fancy for my tastes! Just look!

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Looks cozy. Might want to elevate that computer monitor, though. It's not good for your neck to be looking down all the time like that.
Yeah that would be a good idea. Perhaps I will put the computer on its side and place the monitor atop. I would like to raise the keyboard from the floor as well, though.
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Old 12-08-11, 12:54 PM   #7
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I use to have everything on the floor and I used an Asian-style coffee table for my computer. It worked really well for sitting on the floor.
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Old 12-08-11, 01:01 PM   #8
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My kotatsu is 16.5 inches high... how high is an asian style "coffee table" o_o
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Old 12-08-11, 01:25 PM   #9
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My kotatsu is 16.5 inches high... how high is an asian style "coffee table" o_o
They come in varying heights. Just do a Google image search for "Asian Coffee Table" and you'll see some examples.
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Old 12-08-11, 03:10 PM   #10
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the japanese don't use table mats on top of kotatsus and I guarantee you most japanese use a computer desk for their computers.
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Old 12-08-11, 03:12 PM   #11
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the japanese don't use table mats on top of kotatsus and I guarantee you most japanese use a computer desk for their computers.
Well, what do they know?
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Old 12-08-11, 03:13 PM   #12
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My kotatsu is 16.5 inches high... how high is an asian style "coffee table" o_o
although not common in apartments, kotatsus were generally placed in the middle of the room with a cutout.
That way, you can actually bend your legs instead of having it stretched out.
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Old 12-08-11, 07:26 PM   #13
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Someone had to.

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Old 12-08-11, 09:09 PM   #14
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Pick up your room
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Old 12-12-11, 07:52 AM   #15
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the japanese don't use table mats on top of kotatsus and I guarantee you most japanese use a computer desk for their computers.
True. Traditionally at an Izakaya you sit on the floor in seiza too; but they have bars, bar stools, tables, and a floor area, so there are some people sitting on the floor in one corner of the room and some seated at a table at another corner. Computers are closer to the post-invasion era (after WW2, America basically destroyed Japan and forced American culture onto them), so it makes sense.


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Well, what do they know?
This as well though Computer desk takes up more room, plus table mats protect the tabletop. I am allowed some discretion here.


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although not common in apartments, kotatsus were generally placed in the middle of the room with a cutout.
That way, you can actually bend your legs instead of having it stretched out.
Half tatami with a hearth underneath right? Again, better space utilization pushing that thing over to the corner. I usually don't stretch my legs out under the tatami either.
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Old 12-12-11, 08:41 AM   #16
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Someone had to.

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