Category: design

Office Space

Did you guys love peering into those creative spaces as much as I did? I think it’s fascinating to see how artistic types organize their spaces.Though I certainly don’t consider myself a capitol W ‘Writer’ (I’ve just recently started to tell people that I have a blog without blushing and looking at the floor)

I do have a tiny, tiny office devoted to Yes and Yes. And by “office” I mean “one third of the living room that my landlord inexplicably divided so he could list my apartment as a “One Bdrm + Den.”) But never mind! I love my tiny writing space! Virginia Woolf wasn’t joking around when she said that a woman needs a room of her own.

Chair: Salvation Army $5
Desk: Salvation Army $20
File cabinet: Salvation Army $5, spray painted with “hammered
silver special effects”
Prints: Etsy, gift from The BFF
Lamp: Tiny thrift store in Wisconsin
Cat: Land of Awesome $Priceless
My corkboard full of joy! Also, funny photos of smiling pigs.
My little fire escape garden.
Putin is afraid to sit on the actual fire escape but he will
very happily sit in a flower pot, munch on that catnip
plant and get totally stoned.
Mannequin: Store display shop in Minneapolis
Dress: F21, via Salvation Army.
I frequent my particular Salvation Army so often, the clerk actually
put this dress aside for me because she knew I’d like it!

So that’s my wee little office. Let’s look at some people who have
got a bit more to work with!

I love those tiny clothes pins!
I think that poster encapsulates the secret of success. Really.
Green desk = yes.
What a clever use for clip boards!
Having enough books to necessitate a ladder is one of my
top ten goals in life.
Do you have an office or creative space of your own? What’s it like? Post a link to photos if you’ve got them!

Crossing Over To The Dark Side

In the last 12 years, I have lived in 15 (!) different apartments. And of those 15 apartments? I repainted 6 of them. I am totally BFFs with blue tape and primer and spackle. I’ve painted kitchens red and bedrooms periwinkle and offices leaf green. And I’ve learned the hard way that most apartments are white because that business is easy. Getting a dark, lush color requires gallons upon gallons of paint and a good primer. Not, as I previously believed, no primer and one gallon of the Walmart store-brand red paint. Surprising, that.But if you have the patience and the drop clothes to pull off dark paint, you can create a posh, cozy, intriguing space with (several) flips of the paint brush.

A bit of inspiration you say?

Doesn’t this gray and yellow look fantastic together?
And I love the weird, yellow-censored poster. So strange!
Gray and lime? Also oddly pleasing.
Isn’t the brocade on that wallpaper lovely?

I love the blue door against the matte, black paint.
Shiny black paint and a velvety yellow chair in a bathroom?
If that’s wrong, I don’t want to be right.


I would never have imagined purple could look so restrained
and classy. I guess chandeliers will do that.
Have you ever painted your space a dark color? Do you repaint your spaces?

Valley Of The Dollhouses

Y’all might know that I’ve got a special place in my heart for all things tiny. Tiny animals! Tiny houses! Shakira! So I’m obviously intrigued by these fantastic, modern dollhouses and the adorable mid-century furniture that people are filling them with.I don’t know about you, but my childhood dollhouses were milk crates wallpapered in wrapping paper and my Barbies drove one of my mom’s old ballet flats. But I digress. Cute tiny stuff!

I would very happily hire Rick Moranis to shrink me so
I could live here. And eat giant Oreos.
I want to be tiny and perch coyly on that tiny pink couch.

Sooooo much cuter than all that pink, plastic Playskool
stuff, don’t you think?
Miniature shag carpet equals yes.

So cute! Did you have a dollhouse as a kid? Would you buy one like this – for a kiddo? Or, um, yourself?

Fantasy Home, Yes and Yes Style

A friend recently described the neighborhood that I live in as “vomit-inducing cute.” And while that probably does little to recommend it to you, I can personally vouch for the fact that it is nigh-on idyllic. Quaint coffee shops! Family-run bakeries! Pubs called The Muddy Pig and The Happy Gnome! 

One of my favorite pastimes is wandering through the streets of Cathedral Hill and ogling all the fancy houses that I will never, ever be able to afford. (I live in the smallest apartment in the cheapest building in this little corner of heaven. It’s also cheap because it’s so poorly managed that I often vacuum the halls myself.)Don’t you love giving yourself over to completely unattainable real estate fantasies? Or is that just me being a total yuppie/grown-up? Regardless! Let’s talk dream houses! Mine would include the following:

A chandelier!
Preferably in a completely ridiculous place.
Like my kitchen. Or bathroom. Or walk-in closet.
An awesome, ye olden days stove
No, I don’t need more than two burners.
But I dooooo need all that chrome and enamel
and those gorgeous rounded corners!
A window seat
for book-reading, tea-drinking and basking like a cat.
Or for throwing things outside onto
unsuspecting people doing yard work.
A windowsill herb garden
For all my pesto and Caprese salad needs!
A flowering tree outside my window.
Because I want to be Anne of Green Gables when I grow up.
A library
Totally non-negotiable. Ladder? Also non-negotiable.
A claw-footed bathtub
For soaking, wine-drinking, Morcheeba-listening.
A sink full of ducklings
duh.

My true fantasy house would also include a rollerskating rink, a rock-climbing wall and a tele-portation device, but a girl has to be a bit realistic, doesn’t she?What would your fantasy house include?

Entree Vous

I’m pretty sure the above is french for “look at this cute place where I throw my mail and hang up my purse!” Right? Right. I’ve been futzing a bit my wee little space – covering my door with chalkboard paint, replacing hooks, opting for the ubiquitous floating Ikea LACK shelves.

That’s a Yoshitomo Nara print and a plastic
skull that I painted with left over chalkboard paint.
Obviously, Putin wanted to be in every picture.
Sadly, I could not could not convince him to wear his vest
As I’ve been futzing, I’ve been slowly accruing a big old folder of gorgeous, inspiring entryways. Let’s drool over them, shall we?
Sex Pistols poster + blue bean bags + spray painted
sticks = awesome!
Don’t you love this incredibly literal interpretation of
“coat tree”?
I love all these mix and matched hooks. And how
cute is that duck?!
Slightly creepy? Yes. Awesome? Also yes.
This appeals to my minimalist Virgo side. Also my
plastic-robot-loving side.
So lady like!
Glossy and red is always a win, isn’t it?

Do you do anything special with your entry way?

Yes Spaces: Laura of NELLE handbags

Did you guys know that I’m a total dork for design? Like a “ZOMG, is that an original Eames?!” caliber design dork? It’s true. I’ve been thinking about adding an occasional feature here on Yes and Yes called Yes Spaces – the apartments and homes of people that I know. Gorgeous, inspiring spaces that have not been curated by professional interior decorators and stuffed with $5,000 sofas. Rather, lovingly decorated apartments filled with thrift finds and IKEA purchases that were chosen by interesting, artisic non-professionals just like you and me.Do you guys remember my amazing friend Laura? The one that built up a burgeoning handbag empire with a library book and a second hand sewing machine? Not surprisingly, her apartment is equally inspired, filled with one part (semi) high design and two parts Grandma’s leftovers. Let’s take a gander shall we? And try not to get too much drool on the big mid-century dining table, okay?

Where’d you get all the great bedding? And that headboard?!
The bedding is a collection that I’ve gathered over the years from TJ. Maxx, Ikea, and Pottery Barn. My mother and I often joke about our obsession with bedding, we both have extensive collections, and are fanatics about the quality of the textiles. Sleeping is serious business in my family. I highly recommend playing like the Europeans and purchasing a duvet with a duvet cover in lou of a top sheet and quilt.I sewed together the pillowcases and with the help of my father constructed the burlap headboard using a piece of plywood, burlap, batting, a staple gun, and heavy- duty wire. The headboard is hung securely to the wall like a picture.

The leather bench and sisel rug are hand-me-downs from my grandmother.
*Side note: I find excellent deals for Pottery Barn bedding on Ebay, you can shop for unused sheets and duvet covers there.

How does one layer patterns without looking like the bed-equivilent of a bag lady?
In our old apartment we had an all blue bedroom, not my favorite, not my choice. So when we moved into the new place I wanted a bedroom that was colorful and vibrant, I almost painted the wall coral but balked at the last minute and went for a shade called Smoked Oyster. I think that my fiancé was relieved by the new selection.Mixing patterns can be a little intimidating but really it is simple; 1) select a color story to work from it can be as many colors as you want. 2) Mix together large and small-scale prints. 3) Toss in a piece that seems unexpected and quirky, I chose the seashell print black and white pillowcases & the burlap headboard for texture.
Tell us about these paintings and frames!These paintings are the work of my Grandmother, I am lucky enough to have a small collection of 8, which depending on my mood I pair together in different ways. The frames are her selection for her work.

When grouping art, I lean towards pairing particular techniques or mediums together, rather than themes or colors. In either fashion of interior design I think it is better to mix than to match. Matching tends to look overworked and devoid of personality.

How cute is that lamp? Did you pay one million dollars for it?
Truth, I got those lamps for a steal of a deal at the old Macy’s Flea Market. The lamps are by Nicolette Brunklaus , they are part of her Hidden Royalty series and retail for close to $300 each, I got them for $50 a piece! SCORE!! The rugs are from IKEA, and the woven twig basket with all the magazines is a hand-me-down from my grandmother.

What’s the story with this mirror? Do you actively curate your bookshelves?
The frame was a $20 garage sale find from years ago. It’s vintage, plastic, and the paint is chipping away but I thought that it was divine. Our bookshelf is an extension of my studio space as well as a landing area when you first walk in the door. It contains all of the books that I use to learn from & inspire me. My fiction books are sadly packed away in boxes or resting on my nightstand in a pile. I am a huge bookworm and could literally line the walls of our place with my book collection. There are 2 books that have been out on every bookshelf that I have had since I was under the age of 10. A hardcover copy of The Secret Garden and a destroyed paperback called Bicycle on the Beach, if you squint and cross your eyes you might be able to find them.
Where’d you get the sweet safari chair and guard dog?
My fiancé is not a fan of the chair and lamp, this is a perfect example of where are differing tastes collide. The chair is Hollywood Regency in style and is another Craigslist find. My tip on accent chairs is avoid the traps of mass market chains and search instead for a used chair with good bones. Don’t be concerned with the fabric as you can always attempt to reupholster it later. You’ll end up saving a ton of cash and adding personality to your space.Spot, the dog, has been in my Grandparents house for decades and my Grandmother recently gifted it to me. When I was a little girl my family raced sled dogs so when I would visit my Grandparents in the city Spot would be my dog away from home. I use to kiss him in his black nose and pat his head!

I’m very busy hating you for scoring this gorgeous table.
My fiancé found the table on Craigslist, he has a thing for Midcentury, specifically Danish teak design. While I like and appreciate Midcentury my taste is a little more eclectic – you might say that I am a junker. So when he brought home the table I was not in love. I couldn’t decide if it was a gem or just a table. I worried that it read bargain basement rather than vintage find. He loved the table and part of being with someone is compromise so we kept it. I decided that the table needed some “styling” and opted to embrace the modern lines and theme of it with acrylic white chairs from Target. Guess what? I LOVE the table and chairs it is one of my favorite pieces in our space.


And now I’m busy hating you for having this view. I know you used to live in a smaller place in Uptown. Why’d you move here?
We made the move to because I needed more space for NELLE, my accessory design company. Finding a place, with the space we needed, that was in our budget was quite a challenge. Lucky for us some condos that were originally built to be sold became available for rent and happened to be in our budget.The neighborhood we live in is in a wonderfully diverse section of Minneapolis called Midtown. We live above Midtown Global Market, which houses a bevy of restaurants, shops, and food stands all owned and operated by people of different cultural backgrounds. It is a global bazaar of culinary delights and on any given day we can enjoy cuisine from all parts of the globe.

Thanks so much for showing us around, Laura! Any questions for her, you guys?