Finding creative storage solutions is always a little bit exciting for me. I know it may sound sort of nerdy, but an organized linen closet and some perfectly-sized bins is enough to make my day. When everything has a place in my home, I feel like my mind is clear and I can move on to more fun and creative things. As I am wrapping up all the decorating for my baby girl’s room, I wanted to come up with a way to store her sweet little clothes, but have them easily accessible. That’s when I thought of creating a clothing rack DIY, perfect for kids! Using galvanized steel pipes (surprisingly affordable at local hardware stores) I was able to easily design and construct a children’s clothing rack that could display clothes now, and maybe some dress-up tutus as she grows. This is one DIY that I am very excited about and proud of how easy it is to make!
Let’s Get Started
My mom is like a thrifting ninja. As she browses the flea market fields or scans second-hand store shelves, she always turns up with the best finds. And I’m not talking about the kind of finds your eccentric aunt brings you when she cleans out her attic. Nope, my mom will turn up with that last teacup to complete your set of thrifted China, or miniature impressionist painting of a plantation home. She brings home the good stuff. A couple of years ago she gifted me an old Samsonite suitcase, which I graciously accepted (I mean, who says “no” to old suitcases?), and then I carefully stored it in my basement until I knew just where I wanted it. As my nursery remodel came together I knew that the suitcase would soon find its home in that little girl’s room, but the problem was, the suitcase was a faded navy blue and looked pretty dull and out of place amongst the other white, yellow, and coral nursery furniture. So I decided to paint it! Painting suitcases can kind of be tricky business, so let me share a few tips and tricks I learned along the way!
Let’s Get Started
Calling all Harry Potter fans: Your favorite scar-sporting wizard is back. Even if you’re not a Potter nerd like I am, you’ve probably already heard about the new story J.K. Rowling published Tuesday on Pottermore. Loyal HP fans flooded the site, eager to read more about the famous fictional wizard. Considering it’s been seven years since Deathly Hallows was published (crazy, right?), the reaction is no surprise. The frenzy even crashed Pottermore.com for a period of time, but don’t fret! The site is back up and running!
The short story comes in the guise of a Rita Skeeter gossip column in which Rowling gives readers a glimpse at the lives of Harry and crew, now in their mid-30s. We learn sparing details, like how Harry has a new scar and “a couple of threads of silver” in his hair — sorry, no more spoilers. Instead, to honor this momentous day in the lives of HP fans everywhere, I’ve compiled pictures of furniture and accessories that are reminiscent of the Wizarding World — without resorting to the obvious broomstick or wand. Here are 6 ways to translate elements of Harry’s world into decor even us muggles could actually use:
Top, L to R: Red and Gold Living Room (Gryffindor Common Room), Tree Canopy Bed (Enchanted Forest) | Middle, L to R: Eclectic Mirror (Mirror of Erised), Upcycled Bottles (Potions) | Bottom, L to R: Telephone Box Book End (Ministry of Magic Entrance), Stair-Step Bedroom Dresser (Cupboard Under the Stairs)
Following the success of his fall 2013 upholstery line launch with Apt2B, interior designer Kyle Schuneman has teamed back up with the e-shop to add more styles to his upholstery line for summer 2014.
Interior designer Kyle Schuneman of Kyle Schuneman for Apt2B
Inspired by colors and trends straight from the runways, Kyle added four new sofas to his upholstery line, Kyle Schuneman for Apt2B. The sofas feature details from tufting and rolled backs to stainless-steel bases, plus they come in a variety of pastel hues and neutral tones. Kyle’s summer styles come with the same philosophy as before: having a small space doesn’t mean you can’t have big design. “I wanted these new frames to feel more grown-up and penthouse-worthy,” says Kyle.
These modern styles — the Coronado, the Jackson, the Pacific and the Fillmore — all come in sofa and apartment-size sofa options to meet the needs of the micro-living trend and those desiring smaller-scale furniture. And the best part? They’re totally affordable and made right in L.A.
The Coronado Collection
The Pacific Collection
To see the entire summer 2014 line, head over to Apt2B.
Get more on Kyle from HGTV.com:
Who doesn’t love a good snooze in the shade? This bear in Daytona Beach, Florida certainly did (much to the homeowner’s surprise). But hey, it’s summer! Sounds like this bear has the right idea!
Here are some more outdoor sleep spots, daybeds and backyard hammocks where we think this bear (and you) would enjoy getting some shut-eye.
Design by Anne Marie Allen
This gorgeous canopy bed will put Hammock Bear right in the thick of his natural home while still offering luxuries like soft flannel sheets. The whimsical curtains block out the sun and give him some privacy from those pesky humans!
Design by Jamie Durie
Although this bear seems to enjoy human amenities, he’s still a bear, so we think he’d enjoy this cool hammock suspended high in the tree tops; it combines his natural tree-climbing instincts with a comfy net for napping.
Design by Jamie Durie
When the rest of the world is starting to feel un-bear-able, this suspended hammock-daybed hybrid is the perfect place to escape. Equipped with a serene lily pond on one side and dining table on the other, what more could you need for a relaxing afternoon?
MORE BACKYARD SPOTS TO CATCH SOME ZZZs
If you’ve been following along on my antiquing adventures then you know 2 things about me:
1) That I spend a fair amount of time at estate sales.
2) That I’m all about a serious bargain.
Enter this perfectly distressed, cane-backed French Provincial headboard that I recently found in an Oak Ridge, TN garage for… wait for it… just 10 bucks! I couldn’t believe the estate sellers had priced it SO low — especially considering how hot French antiques are right now. I vaulted over a pile of old lumber, pulled off the price tag and hot-footed it straight to the check-out table to pay before anyone else could lay claim.
Once I placed it in my guest room, I remembered one small detail about older headboards — they’re short. Often much, much shorter than modern headboards. So short, in fact, that the pillows dwarf my new French beauty: Learn my designer trick for making this headboard much taller
It seems like everyone I know covets one common thing — SLEEP. Dear, beautiful sleep, an illusive old friend that comes and goes and never quite stays long enough. A major influence on the frequency and length of our pal’s nightly visits can be largely contingent on our bed. I shamefully admit that my husband and I were slumbering on my childhood double-mattress until very recently. No wonder I was an insomniac who watched countless episodes of Golden Girls until the wee hours of the morning on countless sleepless nights.
The investment in a new, high-quality QUEEN-SIZE mattress was a game-changer, to say the very least, yet the combination of our new mattress and my DIY upholstered headboard still begged for something else. With the bed being the focal point in the room, I wanted something to frame it and make it stand out while creating a romantic, relaxing aesthetic. I found the perfect solution for this in a DIY Fringe Canopy that took all of 30 minutes to install, yet changed the entire dynamic of the room.
It got me curious to peer into other people’s bedrooms and see how they were creating a bed that begs you to slumber peacefully. And, so as not to be creepy, I bring you a totally-appropriate yet intimate look at different sleeping situations that might inspire you and your bedroom.
Any post concerning creating an up-grade to your bed would be remiss if it did not include Justina Blakeney’s incredibly romantic and dreamy handmade canopies. Customize with lanterns, ribbon, pom pom trim, or whatever your heart desires. Learn how to make one with Corinne Czar in this episode of Recreate.
In a stark contrast to those colorful, feminine spaces, Rue Magazine gives us a glimpse into Nate Berkus’s masculine and modern bedroom. Those clean lines and dark palette would put my mind in a calm and restful state immediately.
If you saw Liz’s decorating trends post you know that she and I recently spent several (blissful!) days taking in all that’s new and notable in furniture, accessories, lighting, fabrics and more in High Point, NC at the world’s largest furniture industry trade show — or as I like to refer to it: Disney for Designers.
While I certainly enjoy checking out the trendiest fabrics and finishes, the highlight of each Market visit for me is spending a few hours strolling thru the Market’s Antique & Design Center. Here, 60+ premiere antique dealers showcase centuries-old European rarities, architectural salvage, mid-century pieces and funky vintage finds.
Antiques have always been a go-to for interior designers but with each passing Market, the collected-over-time look is being realistically reproduced by more and more manufacturers. Although most of the items I point out below are available to-the-trade-only, meaning you have to go through an interior designer or dealer to buy them (sorry!), they’re just a few of the trending antique styles that caught my eye. So, the good news is, if you love antiques, like I do, they’re super hot in the design world right now — whatever type of vintage items you prefer, display them proudly!
Vive la France: French-inspired antiques have been the design world’s darling for quite a while and they’re not ready to raise the white flag yet. I spied all the Louis (13-16) plus several Empire and Rococo gems at Market. Below is a reproduction Louis 16 (or XVI, if you prefer, AKA the same Louis who lost his head alongside Marie Antoinette) gilt settee from Eloquence. They’ve done a fantastic job replicating the handcarved details, even subtly distressing the gilt finish so this new piece looks as if it might have been found at Versailles:
Aged to Perfection: Weathered finishes are also nothing new and I spied plenty of legitimately timeworn finishes, like the salvaged wooden pediment on the left at Design Legacy alongside new pieces, like the bistro chairs and zinc-topped table at Dovetail, that have been distressed to look like they’ve spent decades outdoors:
3 More Antique Trends to Watch
Comfy sofas that look good are not exactly hard to find. There are so many furniture makers that really get that what we want when we plop down at the end of the day is a couch that not only feels good, but looks good, too. However, if you add a couple of key constraints about price and size, the field of options becomes considerably narrowed. When Kayla requested that I help her in her search for an apartment-sized sofa that worked well with a mid-century modern look, but was conventional enough to live with every day, AND cost under $700, I knew I had a tough assignment.
So for everyone who is in the camp of needing something small but really good looking, I present to you the following affordable and handsome options:
The Chloe sofa on the left is from Macy’s and is currently on sale for $599. The sales at Macy’s come and go but the good news is they always come back around. Over the past several years, they’ve upped their furniture game and partnered with a bunch of great designers to put out some really refined looking pieces. On the right is a new classic from IKEA – the Kivik sofa. It’s actually one of the larger sofas on my list at 89″, but its proportion is right for not overwhelming a smaller space. Plus, it’s a perfect movie-watching couch.
I’ve learned from designer Brian Patrick Flynn to always check Overstock.com when looking for pretty much anything. Chances are they’ll have something really close to what you want for a really good deal. That definitely holds true for this Signature Design sofa on the left at $679. Ditch the pillows that come with it and add some with a bright mid-century pattern and you’re all set. The loveseat on the right from West Elm is one of my all-time favorites. In fact if I had a need for another couch myself, I’d pick this Everett Upholstered Loveseat.
An option I hadn’t considered for apartments before — but one that makes total sense now that I think of it — is a daybed. The one on the left is also from West Elm and has great mid-century modern lines. It would double as an excellent guest bed for company. Those of us who live in apartments often lament the lack of guest accommodations and this could be just the answer. It’s on sale right now, too, for $639. Last but not least is the Courtney Sofa from Target. Granted, it comes in at a fairly tiny 60″, but if you’re looking for something that’s an upgrade from a college-era futon, this is a pretty good bet. And at $499, the price is pretty hard to beat.
When I get my home to myself for an extended period of time — no kids, no husband — I tend to go on the sort of cleaning and organizing binge that a normal working mom would think was…well, excessive. Instead of lazily reading books, or going out to brunch with girlfriends, I revel in the chance to fix my apartment knowing that no one but me will mess it up.
I was telling Briana that I could see the surface of my desk for the first time in ages and that led us to searching for a filing cabinet for her that would inspire her to file her piles of papers. She’s been looking for just the right at-home desk storage for a while and she indulged my current organizing mania by letting me window shop for her.
Here’s what I found in the way of cute, modern filing cabinets to fit her bill. The only downside? Now I want new office organizers, too:
Browsing for these filing cabinets got me thinking there are loads of high-function everyday objects with less-than-high style. What everyday item or household necessities do you wish you could find prettier versions of?