February 28, 2011

T-Shirt Chair

This T-shirt Chair by Maria Westerberg recently won the 2011 Green Furniture Award.

You can order it as an empty frame, where you then collect 40 used t-shirts and weave them into the frame for a soft and colorful chair.  (It's also available pre-made, using sofa manufacturing scraps.)

Unfortunately, I can't find it for purchase yet in the U.S.

February 23, 2011

Rust-Oleum Transformations: Another DIY option

Recently, Rust-Oleum flew 10 design bloggers to New Orleans for a hands-on workshop to introduce their new line called Transformations.   I read about it on Apartment Therapy.

Cabinet Transformations
I've talked about painting cabinets before.  But now achieving the look of stained & glazed wood doesn't seem so impossible for an amateur DIY homeowner.  The Cabinet Transformations kit comes in 70 different colors.  The website claims "no stripping, no sanding, no priming" (although in the FAQ section they do recommend a Zinsser Primer if using raw wood).  They claim it works on all wood, melamine, and laminate surfaces.

Here's a before & after cabinet photo from their website:

Countertop Transformations:

This is a simple (yet messy) kit that covers existing laminate countertops (also claims to work on wood or metal trim) using 3 layers:  1)  Adhesive base coat, 2) Decorative Color Chips, and 3)  Protective Coating.

It is currently only available in these colors:

Here's a before/after countertop photo from their website:

I haven't used this product, and only know info from the bloggers' opinions and from Rust-Oleum's website.
But it sounds like a great product and I'd be willing to try it (maybe it's finally time to do something with the honey oak that I despise so much in my kitchen and bathroom?)  I sure wish Rust-Oleum would use me as a guinea pig with their product...

February 17, 2011

Laundry Room / Basement in a Craftsman Home

I just got my dream lens, which has a wider angle and allows me to photograph smaller spaces.  I obviously still have a ways to go when it comes to photography, but already this lens has made an amazing difference in the quality of my interior shots!

The lens allows me to showcase projects like this incredible basement remodel.  What started as a typical drab unfinished basement has turned into a warm, welcoming, and organized space for laundry, storage, exercise, and more!

I worked with Drew & Michael from Re-Vive Group  to design the laundry / mudroom area, as well as the custom columns that greet you as you come down the stairs.  The columns also separate the exercise room from the rest of the space.

The cabinetry really makes this space shine.  We used a new Mesquite finish on Maple from Hallmark Cabinets, which tied in perfectly with the rest of the beautiful woodwork throughout the home.  Mark Erickson, my colleague from Arendal Kitchen Design did an amazing job installing the cabinetry.  In projects such as this, good craftsmanship is key.  And the guys from Re-Vive did a great job tying everything together.

Basements can be very challenging due to low ceilings, uneven floors, and plumbing / mechanical elements that must be worked around.  But if done right, they can be transformed into wonderful living spaces like this one!

February 13, 2011

Outdoor Kitchen Cabinetry

image via jobingco

Spring is a ways away, BUT days are getting longer, and I like to dream of the warmer weather to come.  I'm envious of people who have space for an outdoor kitchen.  There's such a big trend towards outdoor spaces. You used to just hear about patios, but now it's all about outdoor kitchens, outdoor living rooms, etc.  And I want one of all of them.  

In the spirit of outdoor rooms, I've recently been introduced to a new type of outdoor cabinetry from Hallmark Cabinets, one of my favorite cabinet mills.  Check this out:

Believe it or not, this is NOT actually wood.  It's a material called TuffBoard (which is sort of like the man-made decking materials you're seeing everywhere now).  Tuffboard can have a simple latex finish, but it can also be creatively finished and textured to look like old barnwood, as shown above.  

These cabinets are weather-proof and whether using TuffBoard or stainless steel, they work great in an outdoor kitchen space.  

February 8, 2011

Kitchen Cabinet Pull-Outs & Accessories

image from Rev-a-Shelf via rtacabinetstore.com

There are hundreds of different cabinet accessory options available.  It can be overwhelming!  Some of these accessories I consider "standards" that I use in nearly every kitchen:  roll-out shelves, pull-out wastebaskets, door-mount spice racks, and tray dividers.

There are some not-so-common items that I like to use as well.

Hafele's LeMans blind corner system: 

Toe kick step stool (I get it from Hafele): 

Blum's Orgaline Plate Holder for drawers (adjustable to accommodate bowls and plates of various sizes)

I'm also always on the lookout for custom storage solutions.

Pull-out bookcase that reveals spice storage behind it:

Pull-out blind corner unit for wine & stemware:
image via designedandmade

Drawer dividers for pan storage:
image from here

Peg board system for oven racks and other awkward items.  (I've used this application for broom pantry storage in the past as well.):
image from here

Merillat recently came out with a unique corner solution, called the CornerStore, which includes drawers flanked by pull-out pantry trays.  What a great way to use corner space!
image from Merillat

image from kbbonline.com

If you see other interesting uses of cabinet storage space, please share with me!  

February 3, 2011

Sliding Panels Instead of Cabinet Doors?

I saw this photo yesterday on Home Design Find.  I love it.  Why?  For several reasons:

1.  Eclectic mix of classic with modern elements
2.  Ovens & shelving recessed into walls rather than cabinets
3.  Cool industrial butcher block cart (possibly a DIY-worthy project?)
4.  Open shelf base cabinets with roll-outs 
5.  Carrera marble countertops & backsplash
6.  Classic apron sink

But what caught my eye the most is the sliding framed glass panels in front of the wall shelves!  And the ceiling-mounted hardware!  Note how the panels don't cover everything on the shelves, BUT, because they sit on a different plane in front of the shelves, and because the glass is lightly textured to obscure the objects behind it, the panels completely distract you from the contents of the shelves themselves.  I love this concept as an alternative to wall cabinets.