Interior Design on Your Own Time

Archive for June 2009

I just returned home from a romantic getaway weekend…with my husband and four kids. OK, it wasn’t so romantic, because my husband was working all weekend (at the hotel) and the kids were exhausted from the trip…but it was definitely a getaway. Now that we’re home though, I’ve got to dig myself out from under this pile of laundry. If there’s anything that ruins the look of a home, it’s piles of laundry. Right now, my house has clothing everywhere- clean laundry, dirty laundry, folded piles that I haven’t put away yet- you name it, we’ve got it. And yet, the designer in me knows that I’ve got to overcome this obstacle- and to start making use of all the laundry organization products that are taking up space in my laundry room.

There are a few laundry organization products that I know will make it easy to dig myself out from these piles. You may be surprised to discover that some things that make your house beautiful aren’t actually designer products on their own!

1- The first important laundry organization product is a good laundry hamper which can keep the piles to a minimum. I keep one pretty much in every room of the house. I have a fun pop-up laundry hamper in my kids’ bathroom, and a really nice ‘fancy’ hamper in the master bedroom. I used to have a hidden laundry hamper in my bathroom when I was a kid, but unfortunately, our current home doesn’t lend itself to that. Maybe in the future…

2- The second critical element for prevailing over the mess is a relatively manageable laundry storage system. I love the idea of using cedar chests to store clothing for two reasons: Firstly, they’re just gorgeous. Secondly, cedar chests are great when you just need to stash your clothing without making sure they’re perfectly folded (or color coded). I know I’m supposed to be advocating home perfection, but let’s face it- sometimes it’s important to just hide your stuff.

3- The last element (for now) of a successful laundry organization system is having the right shelving in both your laundry room and in your closet. I’m a big fanatic about closet organization, so you’ll have to stay tuned for my thoughts on that- but having the right shelving in the laundry room can keep things organized. All too many times I’ve lost my detergent, stain stick or fabric softener amidst the pile of clothing- keeping laundry products organized on shelves above or on the side of your laundry machine is an easy way to stay on top of laundry room clutter.

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Allow me to introduce the first piece of furniture that I designed myself. I still can’t believe that I did it- or that I actually like the way it came out. The piece is a dark wood sideboard with 3 drawers that look like they’re ‘floating’, because they are not attached to the walls of the sideboard. And there are 3 ottomans underneath the drawers that can be pulled out to create additional seating in my dining room in case the need arises.

I’m wondering if I need cabinet pulls for this piece, or if the unique design will only be complicated by the additional design detail. In general, I love cabinet pulls (more than knobs), but for some reason, I’m vacillating whether I need them here. If I had to choose, I’d go with nickel cabinet pulls or possibly stainless steel. I have 2 metallic wall hangings in the room, and I think that nickel pulls would match nicely with them…if I have cabinet pulls at all.

Believe me when I tell you that I’m not opposed to installing the pulls because of the price- if you know me at all, you’ll know that I love cabinet pulls because they are an affordable way to dress up (or re-dress) your furniture. Still, I am confounded by the fact that I’m not sure I need or want them on this sideboard.

Care to tell me what you think?

My New Sideboard

My New Sideboard

As a mother of four, my home never looks the same from one minute to the next.  No sooner do I clean the house, the hurricane hits.  No sooner do we invest in a new couch (or table, or chair), does it become a new trampoline, racecar or tent.  Still, I love change…and I love the excitement of getting something new for the home.

Unfortunately, in today’s economy, it’s not always practical or possible to get new things (or to get expensive new things).  Sometimes we’ve got to make do with what we have or to choose more affordable decorations for our homes- and that’s perfectly OK.  This blog is about how to design (or redesign) your home affordably and how to make your old furniture look like new.  I look forward to sharing my ideas with you and hearing your feedback as well!