Q: We have this rather ugly decorative fireplace in our living room in the apartment we're about to move into. It's this huge wood affair with a mirror and white tiles and not only take up place but is just incongruously situated and designed. As we are renting, demolition or repainting it is not an option. Do you have any suggestions as to how we can go about harmonizing it with the rest of the room? Editor: Please share your suggestions and ideas on how to work with the fireplace with Diwakar in the comments below - thanks! Got a question? Email yours with pic attachments here.
We've shown you many home furnishing stores in Austin here at Apartment Therapy. A city of varied tastes, Austin's got stores with modern furniture, vintage furniture, global decor--you name it. We regret that we haven't shown more stores that offer rustic 'Texan' decor. Big, painted armoires and cabinets line the walls of the store and would offer interesting storage options. If you've been searching for cute and rustic signs for your home, Rustic Rooms has a local resource that will make custom ones. Some of our favorite items in the store were the recycled and handmade centerpieces made out of old propane tanks. We also loved the large, metal and wood frame mirrors in the store. What do you think of Rustic Rooms? Live in Austin and have visited the store? Let us know!
Casual, inviting, and perfectly mismatched, a boho dining room sets the scene for the kind of lingering dinner party that lasts all night. Don't be afraid to mix new and vintage flatware, dishes, and napkins to make a full set-the bohemian style's no-rules approach to decorating gives you plenty of creative license.
Do you wish you were more disciplined about limiting the length of your showers? Well, in honor of Earth Day 2009, we decided to show you a couple of eco-oddities that would aid you in your struggle to conserve resources.... Apparently these dynamic shower curtains, which we spotted on Moco Loco, are designed to help you monitor your water use. The Green Warrior Shower Curtains, prototypes designed by Elisabeth Buecher, interact with water and steam to inflate as your shower progresses. If your decadence keeps you in the shower too long, the shower curtain either strangles you or spikes you, depending on the model. That's one way to do it.... Strange, but true? Do you have any techniques to limit the lengths of your showers, short of compressing yourself in a sheath of plastic?
It has started: the rush of holiday mail mixed with dry hands equals papercuts. This is the time of year we rely on our trusty old letter opener, the one we've had since high school graduation complete with an engraved 'H'. Who else uses letter openers - now or all year round? Have a great one or just any old one? We spotted these modern versions, and although we like them, we don't have the heart to upgrade.... Above: the silver letter opener available at See Jane Work for $7.95. Intended for group gifting, this Beau Coup letter opener is good for bridal parties, holiday gifts, or co-workers. Because of the focus on gifts for groups, the minimum purchase amount is four. Made of aluminum, polished to a satin finish, $20 each.
Are you all neutrals, all the time but have been feeling a little color curious as of late? It's nothing to worry about. We can help you with these easy ways to step up your game and add a little touch of your favorite color almost anywhere. Above: Take a chance on color with one piece to ease in with a different level of commitment. Can you spot the color above? It's a subtle statement. Check out the aqua drawer knobs that add just a little touch of something extra to a brown and white bath. A black, white or wood frame would have been fine, but Ramzi chose a rad red/orange instead. Want to keep your shelving classic on the outside? Make like Abby and add a wash of color inside instead! An aqua door adds a whole new element of colorful curb appeal to Tiffany's front porch.
Ray and Charles Eames are best known for applying their experimental use of molded plywood to adult furniture, but like many important twentieth-century designers, they also made forays into children's furnishings. The couple's Children's Chair, issued in 1945, has recently been celebrated with a re-issue. Available in two finishes - natural and red - the Children's Chair was one of the very first pieces of series furniture to be made from 3D molded plywood. To this day, the influence of the Children's Chair can be seen in contemporary kids' designs by companies like notNeutral and Blu Dot. A limited edition when it was first issued, original versions of the Children's Chair don't make many appearances in vintage shops or on eBay. The Vitra Design Museum recently re-issued the chair and its matching stool in a special collector's edition.
If we smushed a La-z-boy and the Eames Lounge chair into one piece, we suspect it would look a little like this Danish Modern Lounge Chair. This could be a cozy addition to your den, perfect for reading a book or plotting world domination-all for $375! Apartment Therapy Furniture Classifieds are open for your business in the NAV BAR. Post a particularly good thing, and we'll post you here on the front page.... OTHER GOOD STUFF..
'The color choices in my kitchen help banish weariness. The vibrant hues awaken my senses - all of them. Color shouldn't be a one-dimensional experience, felt only through the optic nerve. Color should be visceral. It should engage all your senses, especially in a kitchen. Although this is traditionally a cooking space, for me it serves more as a space for kick-starting my day. The yellow reminds me of sulfur in its crystallized form. It burns the eyes, flares the nostrils. It wakes me up as well as a shot of espresso does, without the jittery side effects.' 'Don't think about the future. Instead of worrying about whether the landlord is going to make you repaint something or whether or not something will appeal to future buyers, focus on what you want. You deserve as much happiness as your landlord, and a splash of color can sometimes make a world of difference. I don't recommend this approach for historic houses, but if you can safely undo it in the future, indulge yourself now. Your happiness is worth the rework.' If you're attracted to a set of colors for a room, you're probably attracted to it in other parts of your life, too, so branch out into other departments when looking for accessories for that room. I found myself picking up wrapping paper and scrapbook paper in the same color scheme as this kitchen, which made for a great 3D piece when combined with a hip frame. Two magnetic office strips were turned into a spice rack. A set of 'CHILL' hangers intended for a teen's bedroom became hooks for my potholders and kitchen towels with a little glue and some magnets. 'What's past is present. If you don't have to always have the latest styles, the decorative tchotchke in last year's hot color functions just as well as this year's, and it'll be on sale now or available at second-hand shops. The paint and the mixer were the only things I got right away in this kitchen; the rest has been collected here and there, and now that my friends know the color scheme, I find myself being gifted with great trinkets that go with the feel of the rooms.' Color Resources:Pick up a conversation piece for your place you can be sure none of your friends will have with Etsy's Shop By Color tool: //www. Behr's ColorSmart tool lets you test a color you're considering in any type of room and then offers coordinating shades to try on the trim and accents: //www.
Photographer: Christopher Mora Description: These were taking looking West from my downtown balcony in Miami about 12 hours apart. The sunset was the first sunlight we had that day and the clear skies continued through the night when a full moon set that morning.
We loved yesterdays discussion of our own approach to our own simple life and realize more than ever how widely this concept can be interpreted. So...... we thought we'd try a thread all about what it means and see if we could - somehow - form a consensus over time. 'To me, Simple Living means....'.
For some, a break from home and a stay at a hotel is an essential part of any vacation. Even infrequent travelers sometimes tire of the bland feeling of many hotel rooms, wishing instead to surround themselves with the joy of a home away from home. For some tips for feeling at home in a hotel, read on! The longer you plan to stay in a given hotel, the more at home you will feel if you truly inhabit the space. So often hotel pillows are inadequate or simply too different from the one you use at home, making it harder to get a good night's sleep. Bringing that little bit of home along with you in the vehicle makes any overnight stop a little easier and adds that touch of home to any hotel room. Consider bringing a towel as well, especially if you love to wrap up in a big bath sheet as most hotel towels are smaller than the ones many of us use at home. Consider traveling with your favorite toiletries rather than relying on those little hotel shampoos and lotions; the longer you will be away from home, the more your favorite products will help you feel like normal. A breath of your favorite scent when you walk through the door will help you put aside the institutional flavor of a hotel and make you feel more at home. If you have additional tips for feeling at home in a hotel, please share them in the comments below.
Want to really get out of the city? Want to take in some vast spaces and good clean living? We stumbled across MaryJane'sFarm.com out in Moscow, Idaho, yesterday and have been lost on the website all day. While it is damn hard to find an overview, the backstory seems to be that Mary Jane Butters started a farm in Idaho over 15 years ago, and has turned it into a remarkable opportunity to become the Martha of the West: a media savy, organic farmer who writes about everything she and others do around the farm in the hopes of spreading inspiration, information and good living. Oh, and there's also a B&B with wall tents as bedrooms.... She edits a women's magazine called Mary Jane's Farm, writes a weekly syndicated newspaper column, she runs an online business selling everything from bread to salsa to non-stick pans, she runs a farm school called the Pay Dirt Farm School, AND she's an organic farmer.
Fell in love again with Donna Wilson yesterday while doing my fall throw pillow roundup. This is her Scottish inspired pouffe, which is both cute and edgy at the same time. It's also great seating when you don't have a lot of room. 'Each is made by hand stuffing Calico bags and upholstering them with knitted panels, reminiscent of segments of an orange. The Pouffes come in two shapes...'. 'They are available in three colours and feature a distinctive geometric pattern.'