Finding a place, moving out, and moving in may sound simple enough, but most people should also realize that this process requires financial stability and preparedness for making that emotional jump. Thankfully, this owner was more than prepared to take the leap. As a photographer, his exposure to beautiful homes has allowed him to refine and articulate what he looks for in his dream space.

Though the unit he finally settled on was old and in need of fixing up, its location and price were prime. After dealing with the structure and bones of the house, the owner focused on personalizing his surroundings. He decided he wanted to base his decor on found objects, a look he accomplished through his collection of vintage cameras, plastic toys, photographs, and prints. While the home is still a work in progress, it's safe to say that the owner has been successful—both as someone who made the move to independence and as someone who discovered his own design style.

(First published in the September 2010 issue of Real Living, Real Home section as "Lost & Found;" photos by At Maculangan; styling by Issa Villar; adapted for use in Female Network)

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