When I got back to Baltimore after a long holiday visit with family, my bedroom greeted me with its disarray. I am only good about putting clean laundry away if I do it when the clothes are fresh out of the dryer; otherwise, they sit in the basket in my bedroom. My husband, who does his own laundry, completely avoids putting his clean clothes away entirely. As organization took a total back seat to the holidays this year, the clothes just never made it from the laundry basket to the dresser or closet-although some did make it to the floor. While of course there's another end to this organization game, in 2014 I want to be more on top of getting things from dryer to drawers. For my bedroom's sake, I'm committing to taking ten minutes whenever a laundry load finishes to put that stuff away-right away.
If your style is one part classic, one part glamorous-and all parts luxurious-rich textiles like velvet, shagreen, marble and fur should take center stage in your living room. Something...everything...needs to be able to catch the light from your crystal chandelier overheard, right? Let these 12 posh pieces be your swanky guide.
We recently stumbled on these storage solutions for small bathrooms without a lot of floor space. While it's common to install hooks and even towel bars on bathroom doors, the door above is really taken advantage of with a little magnetic paint. Small magnetic containers can then be kept on the surface for holding rubberbands, cotton swabs, etc. The door also features kitchen rails for holding small storage bins.... This is another small footprint catchall: it's a plant stand used to hold stacked ceramic bowls. The larger bowl at the bottom can hold somewhat larger items like rolled towels and extra bottles, while the smaller bowls toward the top can hold wash cloths, soap bars, jewelry. For a few more bathroom storage ideas, see Modern Home Storage.
This small addition to a 1790's house blends sleek contemporary fixtures with existing rustic spaces. The stainless steel finishes and window wall in the kitchen contrast beautifully with the rich tile flooring and brick wall. In the bathroom, that same contrast can be found again. A frameless glass shower door and simple fixtures are set against an exposed brick fireplace and rough-hewn open beams. To see more of these beautiful interventions, visit Studio-A Architecture.
As many of you know, living in a studio in an expensive city requires ingenuity. We were delighted to learn that one of our clients, Paul Irish, employed the 'Use what you have' principle so creatively. While waiting for his permanent desktop solution, he transformed his unused coffee table into his temporary desktop. It didn't stop there.... When his desktop arrived, he shifted the coffee table into shelf service, installing the table upside down above a doorway to give him some much needed storage.
Well, after trips to numerous paint stores, a million paint chips, and a guy at Home Depot handing me a card for paint consulting and saying either A) 'In case you need this' or B) 'You look like you need this', we've decided on a color. I can't declare victory just yet because we chose gray and, good grief, achieving the right gray is a tough nut to crack. The above image captures the color scheme we're going for: rich gray walls, warm brown shelf, and the charcoal color shown here represents the color of our dining table. The shelf will serve a functional purpose and the wood will add organic warmth to the room. These walls are a bit lighter than what we're going for, but the shelves are spot on. Oh, and this is pretty funny - I was admiring this whole set up for MY dining room but apparently this is from Resoration Hardware's 'Baby and Child' line. Working with Gray: I've painted many rooms in my life, but I've never ventured into the realm of gray before. If any of you are heading down the gray path, here are some helpful articles I found. The Finalists: Now that we have the general color, it's time to gather samples to apply to the wall. I usually go off the paint chip with success, but due to gray's shiftiness I'm going to apply swatches and check back frequently.
There are tons of tricks to make your small space feel bigger. Aside from mirrors, great lighting and floating furniture, consider using glass in your small space. We spotted.... ...this pretty glass cart-turned-console table at the new Tobi Tobin shop in Los Angeles and thought it was a great idea for small spaces. The glass provides a nice texture and allows a clear view to the decor items stored away, in this case, a collection of books. The idea of allowing the eye to expand beyond the furniture adds depth to small spaces.
Even though the loft is very large, we saw so many smart and space saving design ideas used that it inspired us to look to it for solutions that would translate to small spaces, too. From the main photo above the jump - Good ideas for the kitchen: Back lit open kitchen shelving and a simple, single prep table keep the kitchen looking visually interesting yet clean, professional, uncluttered and far from 'Kitchen-y', which is a bonus since it is completely open to the rest of the space, an issue that studio dwellers often deal with. Good ideas for the bedroom: The bed sits behind a wall that doesn't reach the ceiling, which functions as a privacy partition, but doesn't interrupt the flow of the space. The floor to ceiling white drapes accentuate ceiling height, always a good thing, both in open lofts for playing up the drama and in small spaces for accentuating the vertical space, thus relieving the feeling of a confined area. Good ideas for the bath: the glass partition is functional yet adds no bulk or visual clutter to the space, while the floor to ceiling mirror behind the sink and vanity expands and modernizes the space. Good idea for storage: squeeze it in wherever you can! Bookshelves and boxed storage sit up above the living room, where the ceiling is dropped to a lower level. A series of up lights celebrate the good looking idea and the ingenuity rather than hiding it, as well as providing another source of illumination for the space. Good idea for a sink area: The sinks are installed on a 'Floating' vanity, with clever towel racks installed underneath. The towel placement would be good in a small bathroom for several reasons - they are close at hand, they hide the plumbing pipes underneath and are not taking up wall space.
Q: I just moved into a loft with my partner, and the opening to the bedroom is right next to the kitchen / living area. There is no door and there is another opening to let light in across the top of the wall. As you can imagine, these openings also let in a lot of sound. A. What is a good way to solve the noise / privacy issue regarding the door while working around the pipes and 18 ft ceilings? B. What is a good way to solve the noise issue regarding the 'Window' at the top? Also trying to figure out a way to let light in when we want it during the day, but not while I'm trying to sleep at night and he's in the common area with lights on? Editor: Leave your suggestions for Meg in the comments - thanks! Got a question? Email yours with pic attachments here.
This is it: time to reckon with that bathroom cabinet, where you're sure to find half-empty bottles of lotion, cleaning agents, and probably an old toothbrush or three. We find that underneath the bathroom sink is where most of our forgot-we-had-it or didn't-quite-like-it-enough-to-use-it-often products wind up. Whether it's that lotion we got in our stocking at Christmas, or the bottle of chemical-laden cleaner we bought three years ago, just before making a switch to all green cleaners... Chances are, there are many unused things under there. Whenever we're preparing for a move, or feel a spring cleaning purge coming on, we sit down on the floor and reach under the sink. If you need to pare down in the cleaning agent department, do it the right way. Clean out empties that can be recycled, or save them for making your own household cleaners. Ladies, we can't sing enough praises for one way to de-clutter that bathroom cabinet; forgo the one-use-only fem products and opt for a very eco-friendly option. Once you've organized your products, you can more easily containerize them.
Around this time last year I was happily enjoying working in a newly renovated home office I had designed and optimized for my workflow, furnished and accessorized with small space living in mind. Our friend Alysia had used a portion of the living room as her home office, but I wanted to do something a bit different and use the closet as a work space. The inspiration for my home office/home theater: Three of my favorite movies heavily influenced what I had envisioned for this tiny space: the Symphony No. 9 In D Minor/Ode To Joy scene in Immortal Beloved, the organized perfection of the residence in Tom Ford's A Single Man, and a little of the mod-ultraviolence aesthetic of A Clockwork Orange. Favorite element in your space: The Graham & Brown black checker wallpaper. Biggest challenge in designing my space: Installing, painting, organizing...just about anything inside such a small space is a challenge. Just getting the IKEA Besta Burs desk from my previous studio home office was a challenge, requiring removing the closet bars and diagonally angling it inside carefully, as not to rip or ruin the black paint or wallpaper. What friends say about my space: Only a couple of friends have seen the home office in person thus far.