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So No One Ever Has to Know You Work

… or because, you know, you’d rather not have your workspace right on top of your slackspace in your tiny apartment. Whatever your reasons for wanting to get your home office (or craft room, I suppose) out of sight, the ideal situation would be to devote an entire room to it. When that’s not possible, however, perhaps you have a closet? A large enough closet can accommodate a desk (or better, two filing cabinets with a melamine top to maximize storage space), a chair, and perhaps some hanging paper sorters, along with whatever you need to keep on your desk for professional purposes. Like the idea? Pepper Design Blog has a rough guide to converting one of your closets into a home office.

And naturally, we have some added inspiration!

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Never’s Dream House

Imagine you could pull any room from any house or flat and replace the same room in your house or flat with a snap of your fingers or the flip of a switch. Too bad life doesn’t work that way, but it sure is fun to design a whole new house in your head! My current dream house boasts a lot of white, bright colors, and a baby pink clawfoot tub, mmmm.


(via – a way too cute blog!)


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(via – which is my new fave blog)


(via )

Now, if you have a minute or two to spare for little ol’ me, post a link to a pic of your dream rooms!

Going Gray

gray grey

I’ve had a love affair with gray since my teens when I painted the walls of my bedroom varying shades of gray. As a color, gray is frequently associated with neutrality — being neither white, nor black — and cool self-control. Because of its versatility and ability to harmonize with a variety of other hues, the color gray often serves as a backdrop to other, more vivid colors. But shades of gray can be their own perfect palette instead of highlighting bright yellows or pinks. Used on their own, shades of gray can make for a dramatic and bold or calm and soothing space, depending on how they’re used.

According to Wikipedia: “Most grey pigments have a cool or warm cast to them, as the human eye can detect even a minute amount of saturation. Yellow, orange, and red create a “warm grey”. Green, blue, and violet create a “cool grey”. When there is no cast at all, it is referred to as “neutral grey”, “achromatic grey” or simply “grey”. The color grey is often associated with aging or the passage of time, likely due in part to the decreased pigment-production of hair follicles in time, corresponding to the greying of human hair. In this context, grey is often used synonymously with “elderly”, as in “the grey pound” or “grey power” (when referring to the economic or social influence of the elderly), or as used by groups such as the Gray Panthers.”

You have your choice – go gray on your walls, go gray with accessories, or go gray down to the smallest detail. It’s easy, when there are so many different grays to choose from! Here are some inspiring images to get you started, and tomorrow I’ll show you how you can go gray for less than $25!

gray bedroom
(via)

gray bathroom
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gray dining room fromdesignsponge
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gray living room

gray office
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gray-living-room-better-homes-garden

gray living room 2

Craft Room Envy!

Long story short, I’m sewing a new deeper diaper bag for myself. The old one is awesome, but much more suited to the needs of a newborn than a little chick who’s less than a week away from being a year old! I’m avoiding thinking about where the time goes by contemplating the task of digging out my craft room, which was once my home office. I moved my laptop into the living room so as better to watch the baby, leaving what ought to have been space to sew but became a temporary storage room straight out of that show about hoarders. Not cool, not cool.

Today’s post is meant to inspire me to make my now craft room a little bit more suited to its purpose, but perhaps it will also inspire some of my dear readers, who I know for a fact can get pretty craft when they want to! Here are five cool craft rooms in which there’s a place for everything, and everything appears to be in its place.

craft room 1

(via Making Memories)

craft room 2

(via Crafty Intentions)

craft room 3

(via Heather Bailey)

craft room 4

(via Bliss Tree)

craft room 5

(via Making Memories)

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Creative Uses of Difficult Spaces

Difficult spaces make organizing… annoying. Having no logical places to put things makes it hard to keep anything for any length of time without clutter taking over. Luckily, one can create logic in a difficult space, sometimes using craftiness alone, but more often with a little money and the help of a clever contractor. To inspire those readers who deal with difficult spaces on a day to day basis, here are four fab solutions to problems of organization.

under stair wine rack

An under the stair wine rack might be particularly enticing for the homeowner who loves a glass or two or three but has a kitchen that simply won’t accommodate a little wine cooler.

loft storage space

Is that a bike up there? Why, yes… It might not be entirely convenient a place to store one’s bicycle year round, but perhaps it could live up there during the winter when it wouldn’t be in use much. Think of a storage loft as a smaller garage alternative. Those without bikes could store luggage or a fire safe or linens without anywhere else to live.

living room workspace

This is a great idea for those who, like me, work from home but don’t have the space or inclination to put together a private home office. I’m actually typing this at the writing desk in my living room because my home office has been taken over by baby supplies, so I know this solution works. Putting the writing table behind the couch isolates it to some extent from the rest of the living room so you can maintain that work/life divide.

stair bookcase

And then we have the stairway bookcase, which is a classic solution to the very real problem of possessing too many books. I think this one is rather novel, however, as each stair simply wraps around at a ninety-degree angle to create a shelf. Plus the stairway itself is narrow and steep, making it a great way to access upper floors without losing a lot of first floor real estate.

(Photos via micasa)

Shelving It

The Beard and I are starting to think seriously about home renovations, which is a good thing when you consider that I have an office and he doesn’t, and the entire upstairs of our house is basically unfinished. We think, though we’re not entirely sure, that we’ve figured out a way to turn the upstairs floor (which is currently divided into two fairly large rooms) into two small offices and one big master bedroom. That would leave us with two children’s bedrooms on the first floor and a basement that said children can eventually destroy, thus saving my living room from wear and tear.

This change, if it’s even possible, is quite a ways off, which is fine since we’re still, nearly eight months later, getting used to managing the day-to-day responsibilities of being parents, homeowners, employees, and well-rounded grownup people. Oh, and Horde warriors, but that’s another tale for another day.

Back to those small offices. I’m not sure what The Beard will do with his other than fill it with expensive audio equipment and an ankle deep pile of papers, but I plan to actually work in mine since that’s what I do in my current, rather more expansive home office. Moving upstairs will mean some things have to go — like my freestanding bookshelves, for example. So what to do, what to do…

There’s this:

storyteller shelves

Isabel Quiroga’s Storyteller Shelves could be a fun DIY project resulting in some truly deep shelves. And cheap, too, if I have the patience to scour the classifieds for legged coffee tables that are just about the same width. Plus a similarly-sized desk. Overall, I love the look (not to mention the color!), and it’s something I’d consider if it happened that the Craiglist freebies board became inundated with shorty tables.

(via)

A Little Bit Country

Your home can be a little bit country without animal heads on the walls, lots of dark exposed wood, or being a little bit rock and roll. Just like you can be mod without plastic chairs or inflatable furniture. Not that there’s anything wrong with going a really rustic route.

Check these country interiors out for down home inspiration without the gun rack:

country art

A recipe for rustic: take one piece distressed furniture and combine with old world landscapes, vintage art pieces, and crisp white furniture. (via)

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Making the Most of What He Has

Sometimes people live in small spaces out of necessity, and sometimes they do it for the challenge. I’m not sure why out-of-work architect Sergio Santos chose a small space lifestyle, but I have to admit he’s doing it more effectively than most. He rents a converted electrical closet in Delray Beach, Florida for a mere $150 per month. At five-and-a-half feet from wall to wall, you can touch both walls at once.

small apartment living 2

When you live in a space that small, there’s nowhere to go but up. The bed, television, and closet are suspended above Santos’ office space, and yet he still found places for a mini kitchen and a window sanctuary. Not even wallspace is wasted, provided you don’t call art a waste. Even the shelves have a second purpose, serving as the ladder to the upper level.

small apartment living

Santos built a small seating area, which he calls his terrace, below the room’s only window. It’s the homiest spot in the tiny little space he calls home. The only thing that’s missing is a bathroom, which I hope for Santos’ sake exists somewhere just outside his miniature living quarters.

Never teh Bride Loves: Purple!

I know that it wasn’t that long ago that I posted a selection of purple interiors — which y’all loved, yay! — but a recent search for purple slipcovers brought this versatile hue to the forefront of my mind once again and I started tooling around Amazon in search of cool stuff in said color. Here’s just some of what I found:

purple paring knifepurple graterpurple radio
purple office chairpurple toasterpurple ottoman
purple thermospurple coffeemakerpurple pillows
purple couchpurple lamppurple bottle opener

As always, click on any of the pics for more info. My faves are the purple slipcover (obviously), the purple coffee maker, and oddly enough, the wide mouth thermos. The lamp is a pretty close third, though!

Done Working? Fold the Workaday World Away Pt. II

For those small space enthusiasts — or those forced by circumstance to live in small spaces — who don’t have much room for office essentials like desks and filing cabinets in their homes, but think that the foldaway desk from Ikea is just a tad too wee for comfort, I present this:

compact desk

No, it’s not a chest of drawers or a mini dresser or a nightstand, though I suppose it could be used as such. Rather, it’s a complete desk designed especially with those without much room in mind. See?

compact desk

Sold by Crate and Barrel, this unique space-saving desk is a clever way to make the most of small spaces.

When open, the top of the cabinet reveals generous storage space for a laptop, plus cubbies with removable dividers to stow paper clips, rubber bands and other smalls. Cord cutouts in back let you charge iPods, laptop and cell phones. Below are a storage drawer and one letter- and legal-size file. Integrated wood handles run the length of the drawers, which slide smoothly on ball-bearing glides.

At $499, it’s not exactly the kind of brilliant Craigslist find I treasured in my own days living in small spaces, but it’s not that high a price to pay for a piece of functional furniture that will actually fit into the bedroom of a tiny Brooklyn walk-up.

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