Category: design

Idea Thief: Decor

Now that Autumn is beginning to rear it’s crisp, red-tinged head I’m spending a bit more time pottering around my apartment. Once it’s cute enough to appear on the Interwebz rest assured there will be a tour of my four square feet of meticulously cleaned home. Here are a few of the ideas that I’m currently stealing – as per the usual, links are embedded in the photos.
The artist who makes these plates apparently
drips wax onto them and then sandblasts away,
but I bet you could accomplish something similar
with thrift store plates, a candle and some
white spray paint.
Would it be easy to mount a swing
in most apartments? No. But would it
be insanely awesome?! Double yes.
Isn’t this aeriel map great? You can
often find these at your local library
and I bet you could get a high quality copy
on the cheap at your local Kinkos. I’d
love to do this with either of my adoptive
home towns – Chung Li, Taiwan or
Wellington, New Zealand.
So easy and clever, eh? Vase + Sharpie = Awesome.I constantly see old dressers and desks
moping next to the dumpsters in my neighborhood.
Wouldn’t this be a cool use for the drawers?

I feel like I’m too old for the college
freshman white board, but I still love to
make lists. Apparently, Designsponge has
my back.

Garlands, you are always, always awesome.

What decor ideas are you stealing these days?

Idea Thief: Decor

When I moved into my adorable little postage stamp of an apartment in May, I decided that I was allowed to fanci-fy it enough to make it livable, but I wasn’t allowed to fully commit to Virgo-level design obsession till October. Because Minnesota only has four or five months of pleasant weather a year, and I’ll be damned if I’m going to use that time arranging (and rearranging) my bookshelves. Let’s save that fun for Fall!But my design diet hasn’t stopped me from compulsively trolling the design blogs and bookmarking anything I think I can incorporate into my space. Wanna see? Links to sources are embedded in the photos.

This totally slays me – a clock in a bathroom!
And it’s a cuckoo clock!
I bet you could mimic this look
and thrifted teapots that you
spray painted to match.
What a great way to cover yucky rental cupboards!
I’ve long been meaning to be one
of those women who buys herself flowers
every week. And I think if I had this
set up I just might!
If you’re a matchy-matchy geek like me,
you might get a kick out of a monochromatic
bookshelf. Or you could just do this and
label the spines of your Shopaholic books with
Dostoevsky titles.
Ahhhh! Tiny pots of stuff!
I love the mix and match aspect of these mantels.
How cute are those framed kid’s drawings?Cheap-o decor! Thrifted frames
spray-painted to match.

Have you seen any great decor ideas lately?

Because Big is Soooo 2007

In college, a friend once accused me of being the human incarnation of The Fancy Feast Cat. He probably made this comparison because I want to be carried everywhere on a pillow and eat all my food out of a crystal goblet … but I’d like to think it also had to do with the fact that, like a cat, I’m constantly trying to fit myself into the most awesomely tiny and cozy space available.In that paper bag. Under your dresser. Inside a sock.

I lovelovelove tiny living spaces. Anybody can make a 3,000 square foot McMansion work, it takes true talent to make a postage stamp studio look lovely and uncluttered. There are so, so many benefits to living in a small space. They’re cheaper, they force you to be a conscious consumer and you can actually afford do them up in high style. It’s pretty hard to swing 1,000 square feet of mahogany flooring, but 15 square feet? I bet you could do that.

Here are some of my favorite tiny gems that I’ve found while trawling the internetz.

Wee West Village Rental

How cute is this tiny little place? It’s rented by Apartment Therapy bigwigs Maxwell and Sara Kate. Would you believe that they’ve lived in these same 245 square feet for 14 years? And now they share this space with a baby!? Impressive.
I think this is actually bigger than my kitchen.
Look at those genius doors! The renters made these
themselves out of industrial felt.
Clever, clever putting lighting in the bedside bureaus.
Magical, I think.
400 Square Feet of Awesome
Compared to the above 275 square feet, this place seems nigh-on enormous with it’s luxurious 400 square feet. The renter is a girl after my own heart, decorating almost exclusively with Ikea and Craigslist finds.
So clever! Tara converted her high-ceilinged walk-in
closet into a wee little nest of a bedroom. I would
love to snuggle up in there with all of those books.
Is that red bookcase fantastic?Mirrored armoire = hallway seems a gajillion times bigger.
Gajillion, it’s an official measurement term.

We’re all a little big in love with the Tumbleweed houses aren’t we? They’re made from beautiful materials and filled with the same gorgeous details you find in huge, expensive homes. I can’t get over what a delicious little morsel this house is.

Not an outhouse.

I love the modern/cottage look. Look
at that cheeky little portrait to the left of the door!
Flip up table = genius.
Vacation homes are expensive, eh? But maybe you could afford a one-bedroom, 11′ by 11′, vintage tourist cabin? The current owners bought it in 2006 for $500! People own shoes that cost more than that! They completely furbished it, trying to stay as true as possible to the cabin’s humble roots.
I love the period-appropriate fan.

Would you ever want to live in a super small space?


Long Weekend, Lovely Projects

Now, I realize that it’s entirely possible that you are going to spend your long weekend eating your way through grilled peaches, attending outdoor concerts and applying sunscreen every three hours. But! What if it rains? Or you’re all socialized out by Saturday night? Or you really kind of want to potter around the house for three days? Then check out these lovely weekend projects! Links to the instructions are embedded in the pictures.
Rattan and wicker furniture seem to be the red-headed
stepchildren of the thrifting scene. And in their natural state they are
a bit Golden Girls, aren’t they? But spray paint them a
bold new color and it’s a whole different ballgame!
I have approximately a gajillion bangles, but none of them
are patterned. You can use left over scraps of
material or even paper to ‘reupholster’ your old cuffs.
How adorable is this book shelf?! I suspect if I did this,
nobody would notice all those Twilight books.
Like a homemade Lite-Brite! Only not tacky. Or from the 80s. Put all those spare buttons to good use with these
adorable dressed up bobby pins. These just cry out to be
matched to a sun dress, don’t them?

I love this quirky little side table. Probably because my mom
had something like this when I was growing up. That’s
how we roll – decorating with tree branches and squirrel tails.

Because I inexplicably want to hang things from my ceiling.
All the time.

Have a great weekend!

Ideas I Will Now Procede To Steal

As you guys may know, I’m knee deep in paint and spackle and craigslist furniture in an effort to turn my diamond-in-the-rough apartment into the sparkler that I know she wants to be. I’ve been trolling the design blogs, searching high and low for a bit o’ inspiration. Here’s what’s floating my boat!
Chalkboard doors! So lovely and whimsical!
And more importantly – great for list making.
Piling my oodles of bangles onto something delightful
and appropriately weird. Why didn’t I think of this before?
It’s awesome because it’s like a library and a shoe store all at once!
Is this what heaven is like?
Tiny little biospheres! Wouldn’t this be even better
if there was a wee plastic DINOSAUR IN THERE?!
I love the idea of tucking three dimensional objects
into arrangements of photos on the wall.
Delicate little mobiles made from
things hiding in your junk drawer.
Hanging random things from the ceiling.
I love it!
And the best design element I’ve seen yet?
One very giant dog.
(all photos from designsponge)

Are there any design tricks you’ve been aching to try?