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Morning Maxwell!Have you read the thread on the 16th this morning? There were some email problems last night. Your server kept yelling at us that you had no room left for emails! :)
Why can't they keep it real?I'm starting to grow weary of design magazines, publications, etc. that stage interiors for photoshoots. The first thing I think of when I see spotless, clutter-free space is: who lives there, robots? Fascists? Fascist robots? I don't live like that, and I literally know only one person who does (and I know, like, a ton of people!). So my question for the AT folks: where can I find design guidance for real people like myself: people with crap lying around. I want my crap lying around to look good where it is. So I need some ideas here...Thanks guys.Aaron in DC
Yikes! Cool as they look, it would appear that Toto is having a wee bit o' trouble with their bidets!TOKYO (AP) â€” Japan's leading toilet maker Toto is offering free repairs for 180,000 bidet toilets after wiring problems caused several to catch fire, the company said Monday.
Does anyone have any recommendations for a decent balcony table - the ones that clip onto the railing and fold up and down, preferably?I have a very small balcony, but I would love to be able to entertain out there once it starts to warm up a bit.Thanks!!
cat,I can't speak to its decent-ness, but I saw a clip-on balcony table in an IKEA flier. Here's the link to the website:http://www.ikea.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?topcategoryId=17254&catalogId=10103&storeId=12&productId=69954&langId=-1&categoryId=17265&chosenPartNumber=00063870
So my question for the AT folks: where can I find design guidance for real people like myself: people with crap lying around.Before you find design guidance, you have to have a Theory of Lying-about Crap. Your options go something like this:(1) Crap is Wrong: You are on trend and will be allowed to read Dwell and/or Architectural Digest.(2)Crap is a Necessity that Must Be Completely Hidden: You may join the ranks of the blessed after investing in substantial amounts of closed cabinetry. Investigate whether it's possible to have a portion of your paycheck go directly to IKEA or California Closets.(3)All of My Crap is Unbelievably Quaint: Arrange your crap into "vignettes," based on whether it is rustic (Country Living), white and lacy (Victoria), appropriate for earth gnomes who help you bake sugar cookies (Mary Engelbreit Magazine), appropriate for Episcopalian elves who help you bake tarts (Martha Stewart Living), or suspiciously similar to something seen at Marshall's or TJ Maxx (Better Homes & Gardens). Mary Engelbreit is also useful if your crap is funky and mid-century; indeed, if you own more than two vases or three tablecloths, you owe yourself an issue of Mary Engelbreit, partly for inspiration and partly to congratulate yourself on not building furniture out of pinecones.(4)My Crap is Functional, Darn It!: If the issue is that you have projects and papers and stuff around, you're destined to endure one of Alexandra Stoddard's books, in which she tells you to store your crap in beautiful papered boxes and paint the interiors of your cabinets in clever contrasting colors. You will not necessarily do this, but you'll feel smug that your crap does not include 14 different table settings for your various moods. Also, you will hate anyone who has three houses to spread their crap among.One pattern that emerges from the above is that having crap is apparently supposed to be a female thing -- which is weird, as most men I know could fill a basement with crap.
Aaron - I completely understand where you're coming from. I picked up the new issue of Blueprint the other day and to say I was underwhelmed (and wanted my $ back) is an understatement. The first issue was great - I was so hopeful! Domino is also starting to disappoint me in a big way. I'm bitching and not offering any suggestions...sorry for that!
wendei love your analysis of our crap collection personalities. i think i snorted a little coffee while reading it. thanks for this morning's giggle.
I have a kitchen dilemma. We have one of those 1980's kitchens, the ones with the cream flat panel cabinet doors (melamine) with the horrible horizontal brown wood strip at the top. I'm not sure whether the cabinets were yellow or have yellowed over time. Sadly, the countertops are the same horrible yellow color formica. Even sadder, we don't have the tens of thousands to redo the kitchen.I want a cheap redo. I was thinking of buying some of that peel and stick brushed stainless laminate you can buy to cover the countertop and buying some melamine paint in a beige or grey or putty color to paint the cabinets including the wood strip. Has anyone had any lucky painting melamine cabinets or recovering countertops with laminate? Any tips on good manufacturers for the paint or laminate or other ideas would be really appreciated!
reef:re the countertop,i've never tried this, but i think you might be able to tile over it. i saw a countertop done that way and it was gorgeous.second, you could put down some fabric or paper that you like over the countertop and cover it with glass or plexiglass. i had plexiglass cut to fit my counter at canal plastics on canal street. i took them a paper layout to follow so they could jigsaw around pipes and whatnot. i never decided what to put under it and decided the ugly painted plywood of the counter gained character under the plexi. (at that time i had such a small kitchen that i got a second piece of plexiglass to cover half my stove and make it function as a counter.)cupboards: i know exactly the ones you mean. if you can afford it, you could replace the doors with ikea doors or even roman blinds. i saw a picture of a kitchen once that used roman blinds on the cupboards, which i thought brilliant because when you are working you can have all the cupboards open and accessible without the doors in the way.
Wende's comedy stylings again have me rolling in the aisles! Thanks for the morning giggle. Now I must go formulate my own Theory of Lying-about Crap
wende in phoenix -You are excruciatingly funny. Wait. P2? Is that you in drag as a phoenicienne?
Thanks, Michelle. That's very close to what I am looking for!Any other ideas?
wende's very funny, but i have to say apartment therapy has often featured homes (i'm thinking of nestwest from last year's contest in particular, and the rosy little things workspace) that are full of stuff and impeccably designed.i too wondered about the neatness of homes in the media, but after paring down and really organizing a place for everything to live (not just a box to stuff it in if company came), my apt has kept itself surprisingly neat.
Just a heads-up for those of you in the NYC area who need to get rid of some of the items you've decommissioned lately -Manhattan Electronics Recycling & Clothing Donation Event:Sunday April 22, 2007; 8am - 2pm (rain or shine)Union Square North Plaza (southeast corner of 17th St. and Broadway; note: cars enter at 16th St. and Union Square West).http://www.nyc.gov/html/nycwasteless/html/recycling/spring2007events.shtml#manhattan
reef: we have the exact same thing! how i wish we had the ridiculous funds to replace the laminate countertop with something stainless steel. even if our *entire countertop* is 48x25 inch.wende: you are hilarious. someone should make a collection of "funniest AT comments posted".Aaron: I just use containers to hide "crap" when people come over. One container for all my camera's wires, one container for all of BF's computer wires, one container for all blank CDs, DVDs and paper cases for them... What kind of crap do you have?
I just tell people that my hobby is breeding dust bunnies, which are the original warm and fuzzy pet....
Reef - I have those ugly cabinets as a renter!! When I'm in the kitchen I close my eyes and pretend they're not there.I've seen people do quick fixes where they take the doors off, paint the insides and leave everything open. Obviously depends if you like things on display (see wende's hysterical comments above!)Thanks for the tip Laurie, i have a bunch of electro-trash to drop off there....
Wende, you are funny.That said I agree with you and the people suggesting that the ridiculeness of the today;s design magazines it is real. But as you see from a lot of entries on the Smallest Coolest Apartment, a lot of people are influences by those magazines, and apartments sometimes (homes for that matter) look like these super set up clutter free spaces. A lot of New York apartments go for that "clean" on the verge of "sterile" look. And I do agree that white is not sterile, but c'mon, let's be real, have these people ever had red wine, or an entire cup of latte get spilled on their carpet? Not long ago there was an article on the NYTimes Homes Section about people being obnocsious about their white carpet or new flooring. At one upscale party, the hostess ordered her guests to wear slippers (imagine her friends pool shrinking after the party) another, that had a shoes at the door policy. Those environs tell me a lot about the person that created them. They do not like people, they sabotage their own social status to justify to themselves the piece and quiet of being home alone. And that is fine for them. But it doesn't work for the rest of us. So down with sterile, fascist robot spaces. Pro human warmth and warm environs... It enriches your life - trust me on that.
Anusha73 -It's very interesting what people consider to be human and warm, etc., because there was ANOTHER article recently about people whose apartments drive people away because of too MUCH "warmth" and clutter, etc.I think these are just two sides of the same coin. People liking their place how they like it more than they like people.There are also people who have and enjoy pets, and those that don't, and then there are people who enjoy, say, one, and those that simply cannot say no to anything with a face that wants to live with them.Although I'm allergic to cat hair, I can still manage to visit someone who has up to a certain number of cats per acre under their roof, but whether they mean to or not, they're essentially disinviting me once that saturation point is reached.I think that the goal is really finding some happy mediums for ourselves.
Completely off-topic (or off-topics), but I just had a nasty run-in with a guy on the phone at Broadway Photo in Brooklyn, after they lost my order (for a very expensive camera) and then tried to "make up" for it by having me buy other accessories at half price. I cancelled my order, then checked them out at the BBB--where, it turns out, they use these tactics all the time, and they operate under many names and at many addresses. Here's the link.Beware!
"If the issue is that you have projects and papers and stuff around, you're destined to endure one of Alexandra Stoddard's books, in which she tells you to store your crap in beautiful papered boxes...."_____________Excuse me, what is wrong with all those beautiful papered boxes full of clutter (excuse me â€” I mean "boxes full of color") stacked so prettily in my closet? I love AT but the emphasis on visual cleanliness is beginning to frighten me; Is there some fundamental weakness in my psyche that forces me to keep last year's vacation pictures on hand and old magazines in the bathroom?
Excuse me, what is wrong with all those beautiful papered boxes full of clutter (excuse me Ã¢â‚¬â€ I mean "boxes full of color") stacked so prettily in my closet?Absolutely nothing! I have beige boxes, red boxes, a beige toile box, and a lime green box... I call what they hold "art supplies" rather than clutter... the clutter is in the black-and-red fabric boxes and is pretending to be office supplies.One reason I feel comfortable joking about having crap is that we have far more crap than the AT aesthetic allows for. By the standards of the rest of my family, I'm a heartless minimalist......but to the extent our apartment has clean lines and lack of visual clutter, I owe it all (along with a couple paychecks) to IKEA.
I'm only putting this in at the end of the day, because I think it's a bit harsh, but I have to confess I have stopped looking at the AT Los Angeles site, because they just don't seem to have anything going there besides the links to various shopping resources. Not many regular contributors with insightful suggestions or comments, no helpful advice of note, not many interesting entries in the Small/Cool or Color contests, hardly any Cures worth reading about. I think Los Angeles should be replaced by one of the other cities anxious for an AT spot.. Boston, DC, Pacific Northwest.
I've been checking the LA site myself -- I'm going to LA on Thursday -- and must say I found it a bit disappointing as well. But perhaps it just needs a chance to grow.
I live in LA so I'm happy to have an LA site but yes, I agree. The current situation is a little lack luster. It doesn't get updated nearly as often as the other sites.
This may be way before your time but George Carlin (comedian) once touched on the topic of "stuff" still cracks me up! He was addressing not having enough "space" because of all this "stuff" and needing to move to a bigger space in order to store all this stuff. The more space you have - guess what? Yup, more space to store even more stuff.Small space = not a lot of stuff. That's of course till you start a family and there stuff becomes part of your space :)
I have a question. I'm about to move to a "small, cool" apartment and need help minimizing. My current apartment (which I share) is about 1400sq ft and I am downsizing to 600-650sq ft or so at most. It's pretty drastic. I love the apartment but I'm starting to freak out a little.Specifically, I'm ditching my king size bed for a full (which I already own; in my guest room, currently). But where are the really nice sheets for full size beds!? I can't seem to find ANY. I love me some high-quality egyptian cotton, but most of the good stuff is apparently only available in queen/king.Surely there's a place I can buy some nice new threads?
A full size bed is 54" wide x 75" long and a queen is 60" x 80" so it wouldn't be horrible to use queen size sheets if you really love them.
ATLA used to be worse on content (adding more editorial points of view increased the range of styles represented) and better on community (when it was the only West Coast site, pre-ATSF).Trying to define it as "the Southwest" with ATSF as the "Pacific Northwest" -- I dunno... I agree with the logic for contest purposes, but in practice, ATLA doesn't cover much outside the Los Angeles basin. ATSF does take its stabs at covering Portland and Seattle.Search ATLA for other Southwestern cities, and other than passing mentions, you get:Phoenix -- one Fall Colors entry, who I'd swear lives in my same apt complexTucson -- one vendor, with instructions to find the items in Santa BarbaraLas Vegas -- a couple references to the Las Vegas Market Furniture ShowAlbuquerque -- nadaSanta Fe -- a couple more contest entriesDallas, Fort Worth, Plano, and environs -- multiple contest entries (don't mess with Texas!)Oklahoma City -- apparently not oh so pretty, as I can't find anything muchUnfortunately, I think I'm just part of the problem in documenting this, as I don't have anything constructive to suggest. But it's why I don't read ATLA much even though I'm within its catch basin.
Laura, that's not a bad idea. But how can I keep the sheets from bunching up? Is there some tool or technique I don't know?
I'm not sure what you could do. Maybe some equestrian clips under the mattress to hold the corners on.http://www.victorycanter.com/product.php?productid=16726I guess it depends on the thickness of your mattress. That's what really matters. My queen is really thick so queen sheets always seem to slip off. Maybe those sheets would be perfect for your full!
eriberri, Please don't give up your search for nice full-size sheets yet! I have a full size and have never been lacking for nice sheets. Check out the Eileen Fisher collection at Garnet Hill http://www.garnethill.com/jump.jsp?itemID=12311&itemType=PRODUCT&path=1%2C2%2C5%2C9126%2C9139&iProductID=12311-or-Peacock Alley's "Soprano" 400TC Egyptian Cotton line http://www.peacockalley.com/control/productDetails?categoryId=SOP.. Peacock Alley also has 500TC Egyptian Cotton called "Lyric"Keep in mind that it is only the fitted sheet that needs to be the correct size -- the flat sheet can be a queen size.Good luck in your new small space.
eriberri and Laura -- My bed fits what's called a three-quarters mattress -- wider than a twin but 4" narrower than a full. I use full sheets and queen sheets. Nothing bunches or rides up or slips off. [though it just occurred to me -- maybe I'm totally weird and never move while I sleep -- ?]eriberri, have you tried Garnet Hill online for sheets? They ain't cheap, but they sure is pretty, and I've never had trouble finding full size. Not that I've bought them except on serious sale, mind you, but even then they haven't been hard to find.
eriberri--I'd second (or third) the vote for Garnet Hill. The sheets on my double bed are from there, but I've never had a problem finding sheets I love in double size... Calvin KleinAlso (but promise not to laugh) Pottery Barn Teen.Good luck downsizing. And don't worry, there's still plenty of fun to be had in a slightly smaller bed. ;)
Um, California, huge, no?LA, sprawling, no?Why do you expect ATLA to cover much beyond its borders? It's kinda like expecting ATNY to cover Pittsburgh.I think the alignment with the Southwest is truly only contest-related.
We had those kitchen cabinets in one of our old places - I painted them using oil based paint and it worked fine - I painted the strip at the top and the door panel the same colour and then added new fancy handles down the side - it worked really well.We had nice counters so I can't help with those.
Oh another tack - I can't help but laugh at people who say they worry about the cleaning of white apartments and the spillage of wine and coffee - are you really all that ham-fisted?We have lived in our current house 2 years exactly and have hosted numerous parties, have had numerous guests stay and live normal, relaxed lives and we have not had anything spilt anywhere that would stain - the only incident was hair dye leaching onto my white linen pillowcases and it just washed right out - my lovely all-white bedroom is still as pristine as the day we decorated it!
Wende- I'm from Oklahoma City. You are right in your assumption that there is not much here. There is one modern furniture store, but I was never able to find anything I really liked, stylewise or pricewise. There is a pottery barn, and after buying a table from them...never again. So I have made a lot of compromises, shopping the second hand-antiques market and looking for clean lines. That has helped me from too many possessions. The online shopping advent has been a blessing (I have been here 30 years), but occasionally I still feel as if I were in exile.
p(too) -- It's not precisely expect... that was just my ruminating in the contiguous shade on reasons ATLA hasn't developed community as fast as ATChicago or ATSF, which do look to a larger region. AT: Original Flava does talk about resources and concepts beyond its boundaries (e.g., Paris).Like many ruminations, it can easily sound like whining or bitching when I'm more thinking aloud.
I was never a huge fan of mutliple city sites, so I'm gonna keep my thoughts to myself here. ;)
Oh, I think we all had that discussion many a long thread ago, and you and I were of roughly the same opinion.I will zip my lip and rearrange the living room, whilst fantasizing about a grid of photos of zebras, tigers, and leopards (black, white, and golden beige... c'est moi).
Full-size sheets: Check overstock.com and smartbargains.com â€” the selection of Full sizes is limited compared to what they have in Queen/King sizes, but I have scored some 400-count sets for around $50.Also, the newer bamboo blends are HEAVENLY soft; I think they stock them at BB&B on Sixth Avenue. Donna Karan's home line also did them a few years ago.
Belated, but... thank you all so much for your help with the sheets!
Violetsrose -- Yes, I really am that ham-fisted. I don't even wear white clothing, because if I do I am guaranteed to spill coffee on it within 10 minutes of putting it on. And that's just me, not counting the kid and the dog. So I figure, if I am unusually clumsy (can't get through a day without spilling something) then the rest of the world is average clumsy (can't get through a week without spilling something, perhaps). You white-decor-lovers tell me it's all good in your homes, so I have to believe you, but it's so hard for me to imagine. And if I was a guest in one of these super-white places, I'd be so freaked out.
I am just tickled Hormel Pink with the use of "ham-fisted" on this thread. 15 point word score!!!mjoe--Anyone with a good heart can spill on my off-white sofa anytime... that just means the conversation is animated. Or the wine is kicking in!And if you ever spill in anyone's all-white abode and they are ANYTHING but forgiving, take your ham-fisted business elsewhere.But believe it or not, one of the reasons I've heard *for* white in decor is the ability to so effectively clean it. So maybe it's the beiges you need to avoid! So off with those khakis! ;)
Yep - thats another reason why I only have white cotton and linen bedding - you can bleach it and chuck it in the machine on a boil wash and it will come out looking brand new - White IS easy to clean - or just slop another coat of white paint overI don't see the difference in spilling coffee on white clothing or dark clothing - if you've spilt something on it it needs washing no matter what colour it is - so you might as well have white and enjoy it!(My word score is really flying this week - I also got ziggurat in scrabble the other day - 98 points!!)
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