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Craft Room Envy!

Monday, February 8th, 2010
By Christa Terry

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

Tuesday, January 12th, 2010
By Christa Terry

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)

Airstream Living On the Chic

Tuesday, December 29th, 2009
By Christa Terry

Were it not for my having chosen to acquire a husband, a baby, and too many cats, I’d be just fine living in some tiny flat. When I lived in Costa Rica, I rented a teeny condo that was no more than a bedroom that barely accommodated a full bed and an all purpose room with a two-burner hot plate and sink installed. I’m not sure that I’d go as small as these folks, but having lived as a subletter in various New York City apartments, I got used to spending all my time in a bedroom-size space to avoid talking to roommates.

Of course, once you’re comfy living cozy, there’s no longer any reason to limit yourself to stationary housing. Those Tiny Houses can be towed around quite easily with a truck. And there are absolutely brilliant caravans out there! I’m particularly besotted with the restored 1959 Airstream owned by Andreas Stavropoulos. He painstakingly restored it to its former glory, then went a step further, installing mod track lighting, a cabinetry system that allows for quite a bit of storage, cork flooring, and cheerful paint.

airstream living

It’s parked in the backyard of a co-op, near a garden and some friendly chickens. My only question is, seeing as that Stavropoulos removed the necessary facilities, where then does he poo?

airstream living 3

Not in the lovely sink, I hope, bordered as it is with its brushed metal backsplash and deliciously simple cabinetry. There’s a ton of storage under the bed, which is the only reason that the owner’s wardrobe can be contained within a tiny Airstream.

airstream living 2

Add in a home office, and you have everything the singleton needs in one tiny Airstream… excepting a bathroom, of course.

(via Dwell)

A Kitchen With Flow

Tuesday, December 8th, 2009
By Christa Terry


Love her or hate her, Julia Child exerted a great deal of influence over the evolution of American cooking — a book I love, Something From the Oven, touches briefly on just how much. But that sort of history is best left to authors of food tomes and cookery bloggers. What I’m interested in is her kitchen. Want to see it? There’s an amazing reproduction of Julia Child’s kitchen in an exhibit at the Smithsonian Museum of American History. I’d post a picture here, but I’m unsure about the legality of doing so, which means you’ll have to be satisfied with the link above.

Isn’t that a beautiful kitchen? Julia Child’s kitchen was not particularly pretty in the sense that a staged kitchen in House Beautiful is pretty. Rather, it’s a lived in kitchen… a worked in kitchen… a kitchen that is beautiful in its perfect usefulness. The knives, the colanders, the parts for the KitchenAid are all accessible. I somehow imagine that I could walk right into Julia Child’s kitchen and start whipping something up without much trouble. I doubt anyone could say the same for my kitchen, since not much beyond my cast iron pan and my teapot is accessible without digging around in cabinets and drawers. Could someone say the same for your kitchen?

Making the Most of What He Has

Wednesday, September 9th, 2009
By Christa Terry

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.

Too Calm? Just Right?

Friday, December 26th, 2008
By Christa Terry

Small home office

On one hand, I’m loving the way space is utilized in this small home office from Apartment Therapy. On the other hand, the pastels and light-colored woods are so calming that I have to wonder whether I’d fall asleep while blogging. The bright and cheery orange accents (esp. the adorable retro wall clock) might keep me awake for a while, but I think I’m the kind of person who needs the intense stimulation my glaringly cherry red home office provides.

Do you agree? Disagree? Hate pastel peach with a burning irrational passion?

Waste not, want lots!

Wednesday, July 30th, 2008
By Christa Terry

For years, I threw all my office waste into the same bright teal bin I’d been using since I moved into the university dorms. There was a huge wave of dried nailpolish that appeared to be oozing down the side and a splash of orange paint that got there when I spilled an entire can over the contents of my desk. That didn’t matter much when I kept it out of sight in a corner, but I started getting a little embarrassed when I moved and it became the bathroom wastebasket. There were no cabinets or corners in which to hide it, and it didn’t exactly go with anything else in the room.

Fancy?Streamlined?Uh, voluptuous?

Naturally, I did what I always do in such situations, which is move forward without ever once looking back. The old bin went straight into the recycling can, and I slogged through Amazon pages until I found a new, better wastebasket (rather like the one in the upper middle position) that fit right into my decor scheme. Then, when I moved, I put it under my full bath’s sink where it would be out of sight.

I actually think that anyone with sufficient storage space should just keep the smallest possible wastebasket tucked away under the sink or in the bathroom closet. Visitors to one’s home don’t particularly want to see one’s used cotton swabs or wadded up tissues. Failing that, I recommend buying the loveliest possible bin and emptying it frequently — however tiresome the thought — when you know there will be guests about.

Cool in a can

Monday, July 21st, 2008
By Christa Terry

Clipinno?But can I close them again?

The technology that allowed people to store food in tins was developed in the early 1800s. Nowadays, food isn’t the only thing that comes in cans. You can get a carnivorous garden in a can, a t-shirt in a can, or a baseball card in a can. You can even find karma in a can, though I’m not entirely sure how they get it in there.

Lekker is currently offering a few more things in cans…on sale no less! Eleven bucks will buy you a candle in a can featuring colorful retro labels and no-mess high sides. For $7.50, you can get paperclips, mini-candles, or creative pins in cans with slick vintage-look labels. Yes, the appeal is in the packaging, but it’s a small price to pay when you need a little fun in your life.

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    Christa Terry
    (a.k.a. Never teh Bride)


    Manolo the Shoeblogger