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Big Into Basics: Toy Boats

There’s nothing like having a baby, toddler, or child to make one long for extremely simple and basic. It seems like no matter how dedicated is to the notion of buying plain wooden toys hand carved by old men in the Netherlands out of sustainable, non-toxic wood using patterns hundreds of years old blah blah blah, for the infant or the child, cheap plastic crap with thousands of breakable parts keeps being vomited into one’s house.

Maybe that’s why I’m absolutely in love with these simple cork toy boats designed by the Swiss-French-Belgian designer trio BIG-GAME?

Toy boats for mama?

Two pieces, not much to lose

Supposedly the Portuguese company Materia released these in April, but I have not seen them for sale as of yet. Boooo. Do you have a favorite simple toy that you loved as a child and maybe even still love to this day?

Prying Eyes Stay Out, Light Comes In

Creepy neighbors looking into your windows from their windows? It’s a problem faced mainly by city dwellers, though anyone with a home that’s close to the next house over may find themselves facing privacy issues when it comes to bathroom and bedroom windows. The first solution that comes to mind is probably a curtain or blinds, but how about adhesive window film? Possibly associated with grandma’s house and restaurant bathrooms – at least in my mind – adhesive window film is nonetheless extremely useful when it comes to maintaining one’s privacy without also blocking out the sun.

And when it’s Emma Jeffs window film you’re using, you can choose between a whole bunch of really cool, pretty patterns that very specifically don’t look like the window film at grandma’s. I’m talking about everything from traditional geometric patterns to florals to unexpected stuff like rocket ships and fish.

This is just a sample - there are tons more patterns in the line

Perfect forthe potty, of course.

But also lovely in the kitchen and anywhere else privacy is required.

Each 37″ x 52″ roll of Emma Jeffs adhesive window film costs about $80 (a little steep, sure) and can be found at DesignPublic.com and 2Jane.com.

Wish I Still Had One of These…

…or, you know, the space for one of these. I’m not sure how it happened, but when I moved from an apartment into an actually house, I lost bathroom space. The old apartment didn’t have much going for it, but it sure did have a sizable bathroom, and a sweet free-standing clawfoot tub to soak in.

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A Tub I Could Happily Drown In

Wouldn’t it be lovely to slip into this round Jacuzzi tub designed by Michael Richman that was featured in the most recent issue of House Beautiful?

Plenty of space to stretch out, almost like taking a little swim. I have to say that one thing I absolutely detest about my current bath – other than the fact that I can’t get in it without having to share with a tiny person who has no qualms about pooping in it – is that there is no way for me to immerse myself up to my neck without creating an overflow situation.

So, having this bath or one just like it at my disposal would be lovely. Even if it would feel, just a little bit, like the ceiling was peeing on me.

NtB’s New Dream Bathroom

Sure, there’s not a huge amount of head space above the tub, but who needs head space when you’re soaking. And soaking and soaking and soaking. Sitting in a gorgeous tub, relaxing my cares away is most definitely not how I’ll be spending my weekend, but I can dream, can’t I? Have a beautiful weekend, everyone!

Image via micasa

Clawfoot Tubs With Rooms of Their Own

I loved looooooved the old clawfoot tub I had once upon a time in an apartment I lived in before getting married. I think it was the thing I missed most, bathroom wise at least, when we bought our little Cape. Even if that tub was kind of old and dingy and rusty all the time because the finish had rubbed off the cast iron in so many places. It was basically impossible to clean, so I hardly did bathe in it.

Besides, my bathroom wasn’t romantic or dreamy enough to make the whole clawfoot tub experience worthwhile.

Of course, I’d happily give up romantic and dreamy to get huge, fireplace-y, and wall mounted TV-y like the loft bathroom at Beachnest. A clawfoot tub with its own room, maybe even its own floor? *swoon* If I had all the space in the world, maybe just maybe I’d have someone whip me up a bathroom that was just a room for the bath. Would you? Or are you more of a high-tech ultrashower kind of person?

Ceiling Height: The Highs and Lows

Growing up, I saw mainly your standard 8-foot ceilings. Then I lived in a flat in Germany where the ceilings (and the beautiful windows) absolutely soared. But I was only in Berlin for a year, so the culture shock I felt upon returning to the States did not involve ceiling height oppression. Now in new construction, ceilings seem to have shot up to a respectable 10 feet or so, but here I sit, writing this in a classic revival Cape with its 8 footers. Which frankly, never even caught my eye until I started looking into ceiling heights, and now I keep looking up, wondering if I ought to feel oppressed by my low ceilings.

According to an Apartment Therapy survey, the majority of people prefer a ceiling height in the 8-10 foot range, with ceilings that are ‘at least 10 feet’ a close second and very few people preferring 8-foot ceilings or something even shorter. Me? I loved the high ceilings I had in Germany and then again in Brooklyn, but I wasn’t the one paying the heating bills. And really, I love the coziness of my Cape – a quality that is in part due to the low ceilings. Also, I pay for heat now, so low ceilings are def a plus. In other words, I’d say there are benefits and drawbacks to every ceiling height, standard and taller. (I can’t think of any benefits of anything lower than 8, though.)

Since I’ve experienced plenty of both, I thought I’d talk today about some pros and cons of high ceilings and low ceilings.

HIGH CEILINGS

The Pros: They look awesome, and some people find that they feel freer in a space with high ceilings. You’ll never have trouble decorating a space with high ceilings because you’re not limited by furniture height or the size of wall art. And you can toy with the idea of a painted ceiling, if you like.

The Cons: Supposedly, a room with a high ceiling can make inhabitants feel small and insignificant, though I never noticed this myself. In a room with high ceilings, the eye is drawn to the height of the room, making the horizontal dimensions of the room seem narrower. Spaces with high ceilings can be more difficult to heat and cool, depending on the design of the home.

LOW CEILINGS

The Pros: A lower ceiling can make a small room appear wider. Easier to heat and cool, if only by virtue of there being less airspace needing temp control. Some people find low ceilings cozier and homier than high ceilings.

The Cons: Decorative ceilings and thick crown molding and things like chair rails are right out, and tall people can feel decidedly cramped even if you don’t draw attention to the lowness of the ceilings. That feeling might be even more acute in a wide room. It’s tough to find the right ceiling fans and also to jump on the bed, boo.

I told you, now you tell me: How tall are the ceilings where you live? And what ceiling height would you actually prefer?

Don’t Care Who You Are, Don’t Care What You Do

But whoever you are and whatever you do, DO NOT DO THIS:

Seriously, don’t. I’m so adamant about this that I’m not even going to tell you where you can buy it.

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