Category Layouts

Living + Workspace: Current Layout and Mood

Posted by Jesyka D'Itri Marés on 6 Comments

I thought I’d take a little break from the wedding posts. It has been FOR-EVER since I updated my blog with any information on our living + workspace situation. Lately, I’m wondering if there will ever be a time when I get all of this (life, work, family, blogging) down and settle into a nice routine? Anyway, I remembered about month ago how I never posted before photos of the living room! I’ll get to that, but first, lets remember what my last updated layout looked like, with a few wishful pieces thrown in there:And it’s current state:
Previous to acquiring the new-t0-us storage benches for the kitchen, we had the two armless chairs that go with our couch sitting in the breakfast nook, set in a way to look like a settee. They fit perfectly, and I was planning on designing around that until we found the benches, which just made much more sense, and could fit more people. So the chairs came out and back into the living room, with intentions of selling them on craigslist. The “chairs” are really just pieces of a sectional couch, so we just put them next to our couch, as if it were a sectional. We ended up falling in love with the new arrangement! It is so comfy, and it is the perfect length and height for the desk behind them. There is one, HUGE drawback; they are not the same color as the couch. WHYYYYYYYYYY did I insist on getting our chairs in a different color?! I’m kicking myself for this. I will see how much it will cost to have these chairs re-upholstered in the same fabric, but geesh. Anyway, this layout is going to be it, I think, unless we decide to make any major living space purchases in the next few years…

 If it is crossed out, I own it. Also, I left some of the text from what I previously wrote in a few cases.

1) IKEA SANELA Curtains: We have these in a teal blue they don’t seem to sell anymore. I’m also thinking about replacing our rods with these new more substantial rods. :)

2) IKEA LINDMON blinds: *BIG TIP* Buy these from the as-is section. We bought 9 sets of these blinds from the as-is section, most for around $10, and some for as low as $7!

3) Brass Boom Floor LampI don’t own this exact lamp, but the one I own is very similar. I bought a brass boom floor lamp about a year ago from Home Goods. Then I returned it, because it was missing arm, and all they had left were some oil rubbed bronze ones, which I reluctantly bought and it definitely really just looks black. I’ve been thinking about spray painting it brass/gold/what-have-you to brighten it up. This is low on the priority list as it looks fine as-is too.
Image: edwardian boom arm floor lamp via circa lighting.

4) My Awesome Chesterfield sofaOH this is the most expensive thing we have ever purchased for the house, and I don’t think it was even that much, considering what we got;  $900 + $200 (?) for the nail head trim. We had it made by custom sofa design, here in Los Angeles. I believe we had it made in the grade 3 fabric queen, buckwheat color. It is microfiber and, although I  usually have super crunchy mama tendencies,  I have to say this fabric is AMAZING! Everything, and I mean everything, wipes off of it. Ketchup, pen, red wine, crayon… you name it, I’ve wiped it off of this couch. I’m always astonished by how it ends up so clean! Great for a couch, great for kids.

5) Pillows: Anthropologie’s landscape pillow (on sale for $23 each!), IKEA’s felicia pillow in fuchsia, IKEA STOCKHOLM pillow, velvet pillow from World Market.

6) Coffee Table: We still haven’t made our coffee table, but we are leaning towards a design more like this, with a little shelf underneath the tabletop.

7) Faux-Marble Bust: This is not the one I own, but I love these things for some reason!

8) Saint-Raphael Travel PosterI bought this  in college when travel posters were all the rage. (I think I bought from World Market, but  there are plenty on the internet). I always wonder about keeping it, but Tyler pointed out that it totally works on this board! And it does, especially with the gold IKEA frame. I’ve always loved that tree!

9) Corcovado Rug: We bought this during anthro’s 50% off sale items during the holidays, for a whopping $250! It was originally about $800. Super exciting for me, because I never thought I would own a rug I really loved. :)

10) Campaign Dresser: We need something to replace the hope chest under the projector screen. It is too deep, and creates a very narrow walking space into the kitchen. I would LOVE to find a shallow campaign style dresser, but we might also go with an apothecary cabinet. Whatever it is, I’m thinking about 10″ deep, and I’m hoping to find it on CL, at a thrift store, or at a flea market.
(image via: Sweet Carolina Wife)

11) Yellow Tufted Chair: This is the curb-side rescue that I still need to reupholster.

12) My grandfather’s painting.

13) Our Hutch: I’m thinking of turning this into a bar.

14) Melltorp Dining Table: We use this as our desk, and when we have parties it is where I set up the food. The problem is, when Tyler put it together he screwed the screws in too tight, and there is damage on the table top where each of the 8 screws come in. I would like to eventually paint or maybe even replace the table top.

15) Sheep Skin: We actually have the fake ones. One for each desk chair.

16) Globes: I love globes. I have one, and I want more. I’ve ALWAYS wanted to wallpaper my office w/ one wall as a map, but I still don’t think it’s the right time for that. (Although, I feel like globes and maps are trending, so I do hope I still want to do that when the opportunity finally arises.) This globe is particularly beautiful and I love the stand, and you can bet I’ll be scouring flea markets for something similar.
From bellalulu vintage on etsy.

17) Yellow Basket: I saw these at costco of all places, and I love them!

18)  PATRIK swivel chair: These were going to be tossed out at Tyler’s old work, so we took them home. I enjoy how they coordinate with our rug! The wheels do a number on our floor, so they might have to go; ideally, I’d like to just replace the bottom half.

19) Sunburst Mirror: I bought this from Target in store for $17.99. It’s totally not gold. I had to spray paint it. However, I discovered yesterday that Layla Grace carries pretty much the exact mirror. Given that the photo is essentially the same (except Target put in a digital gradient to fake out a mirror), I’m willing to bet Target knocked off the mirror that Layla Grace carries. Also, I’m willing to bet that the mirror from Layla Grace is actually gold. The mirror from LG has 17″ on Target’s mirror, but Target’s costs a whopping $290 less.
Target’s Home ORB Sunburst Metal Mirror
Layla Grace’s Sunburst Wall Mirror

20) Tree of Life Curtain: This is apparently not on sale on their website anymore, but it is from World Market. I’ve loved this print for a while, and I just realized it might actually work pretty well in this room. I can either use them on the bookcases, or make a few pillows out of them. I haven’t decided yet, so I haven’t bought them yet!

21) Zigzag Rug from Urban Outfitters: I know chevron is everywhere, and it’s one of the reasons I’ve tried to not overdo it, but I enjoy this rug, and it is a good price and would work under our desk, to save our poor floors from the chair wheels.

22) IKEA BILLY Bookcases: We have all four, two of which are the deeper 15″ ones. They all have extension units, but I’m still in the market for hardware and making them look campaign style seems pretty easy… >.>

Living + Workspace Series:
• (09/15/11) Living + Workspace Layouts
• (09/29/11) The Midas Touch ← mood board
• (10/04/11) Building Our Own Coffee Table
• (10/13/11) Living + Workspace; Built-in Sketches
• (11/11/11) Living + Workspace Update
• (11/14/11) Bookcases
• (11/22/11) Painting a Projector Screen
• (03/30/12) Before + After: Antique Lamp
• (04/06/12) Before + After: Front Door
• (06/20/12) Living + Workspace: A Revealing Update

living + workspace update

Posted by Jesyka D'Itri Marés on 11 Comments

So, unfortunately the going has been slow like molasses in our new living + workspace. I’ve been doing all of my work, research, editing and blogging from a tiny 20″ x 30″ desk, which is very hard with a 24″ monitor and a pen tablet! That is not to say that there has been no progress made however!

For our faux built-in look we went for Plan #1 with the Billy Bookcases. We bought 2 of the 15″ D ones early last week and set them on the outside, with the two 11″ D ones that we already owned in the middle in order to make more room behind the desk that will eventually float in front of it. I have spent over a week styling these bookshelves!  When Kate from Centsational Girl styled her bookcases over a weekend I felt like I was crazy for taking so long, but then I read what Karen from The Art of Doing Stuff said about styling her bookcases:

So if you’re looking at your bookshelf thinking it looks like stink, it probably does.  You know what your problem is?  You just haven’t lost enough sleep over it.  You haven’t woken up with crazy hair in the middle of the night and re-arranged it.  You haven’t laid every single thing out on your floor and placed it back in the bookshelf one by one over a 17 hour period eating only bits of stuff  you find in the carpet.  You haven’t  obsessed and stared and gotten angry at it enough.  Quite frankly, and I hate to be rude, but the plain truth is … you probably just aren’t crazy enough.

So, at least my brand of crazy has company. :) I will have some preliminary photos up soon. I’m almost at a point where I have a spot for every book!

IKEA’s Melltorp Dining table

Moving on to the desk… We’ve settled on buying the 68″ Melltorp dining table from IKEA. I spot it every time I’m there and I notice it would be a great desk; At $69, it’s tough to beat the price (even by CL standards) and the narrow depth is exactly what we need in this space. I was pretty convinced this was it so I did what I always do–searched for it on the internet, and I found a Unplgged article Ikea’s Melltorp Dining Table Is One of the Best Office Desks. Cinched it! But now our only problem is that it is not available at the Burbank IKEA (10 miles away). It is also not available at the Carson IKEA (30 miles), Covina IKEA (38 miles) or Costa Mesa (54 miles). I’m sure I’m not garnering any sympathy from people who don’t have even one IKEA in a 60 mile radius from where they live, but I’m actually trying to emphasize how completely un-available this table is right now! I called Burbank and I guess more will be in stock come the end of November/start of December. So, I have to sit at this tiny desk until then. In the meantime, I’m tracking the Craigslist RSS feed in my google reader for ads pertaining to Melltorp. Only the smaller table have been listed so far!

Another really cool thing about this dining table is that, like all things IKEA, it is totally hackable. I can’t decide what color to spray paint the steel frame yet, or if I want to go with a reclaimed wood top instead of the melamine top. Here is an excellent example of a very inexpensive hack done with plywood:

Photos by Oxley Woods via Flickr

So, I’m looking forward to when I finally get my hands on one of these so I can totally customize it! We have to drill a hole and build some sort of apparatus for all of the wiring needs this table will have, which will be interesting… Also, upholstery tacs are calling my name!

As far as other details in the room goes, we are planning on installing a mantel above the wall heater and underneath where our projector hits the wall. Underneath that, I’m thinking of (literally) hacking up our old dvd towers into a shelf that fits seamlessly under the mantel on the other side of the wall heater–as I am typing this, I can tell how much this needs to be sketched out.

I’m hoping to have more seating in this room than ever before; I want to add some chairs to either side of the hutch (if we keep it). I particularly like the idea of small low stools in front of the coffee table, which I am sure Laelia would love.

An example of small, low stools next to a coffee table. Design by Pal + Smith; found in their “Fashionably Bold” Portfolio.

Another idea we have is to add a shelf to extend out of one of the bookcases to be laptop desk. It will give Tyler the space he needs, while taking up very little space. We plan to put a large fabric covered framed corkboard above it.

Floating Desk; Rose Uniacke Interiors

I also really don’t know what sort of table I want to go beside the couch just yet. I hope we can pool together a little cash for a trip to the rose bowl flea market next month, but we’ll have to see. We only buy furniture from IKEA or Craigslist it seems, and after the Melltorp table I think we’ll be done with IKEA for a while. I love IKEA for workspaces, but I think we’ve exhausted it as a resource for now…

We also need way more lighting in here, some window shades, new rugs, a replacement for the two ottomans, an entire decor theme to be worked out… but I’m not feeling like I can do that until I get the bones of this room complete! The end of this month, hopefully. :)

Living + Workspace Series:
• (09/15/11) Living + Workspace Layouts
• (09/29/11) The Midas Touch ← mood board
• (10/04/11) Building Our Own Coffee Table
• (10/13/11) Living + Workspace; Built-in Sketches
• (11/14/11) Bookcases
• (11/22/11) Painting a Projector Screen
• (03/30/12) Before + After: Antique Lamp
• (04/06/12) Before + After: Front Door
• (06/19/12) Living + Workspace: Current Layout and Mood
• (06/20/12) Living + Workspace: A Revealing Update

Living + Workspace; Built-in Sketches

Posted by Jesyka D'Itri Marés on 9 Comments

So, we are still having a hard time deciding how exactly to approach our faux built-in wall. We have 3 ideas, all featuring IKEA furniture:

Plan #1: Built-in Billys

cost: $380 (estimated; furniture only)

We already have 2 tall Billys in here, with extension units at the top. This plan would ideally include the new 15″ deep billy which is supposed to be released this month. We would use two short deep billys in the center, and then two short standard depth billys on top of them. We absolutely need a deeper space for things like the printer and my artbins. Since there is about five extra inches, we plan to use some inexpensive chair rail moulding to fill in the gaps. Tyler also came up with an excellent idea to install the library lights! The extension units come with an extra shelf we don’t plan on using, so we will cut them in half and install them vertically above the extension unit, and have the library lights mounted onto each piece. We would buy a narrow rectangular dining table (likely a something from CL that needs a little TLC), and use it as a desk that sits in the middle of the room.  I would probably frame an extra large (think like 6ft tall) cork board covered in grasscloth to go on the left wall.

The pros of this set up are: ample storage, easier to connect the iMac to the projector, and easy conversion to a dining area that doesn’t scream “I work here” when the computer is moved off the dining table/desk. Also, I keep being drawn to this in photos; I think it is the most sophisticated look of them all, and I think that’s something I am going for here.
The cons of this set up are: wiring issues, and lack of wallspace (which is something I really want), potentially no drawers, seeing the back of the iMac when you walk in the door.

Plan #2 Built-in Desk

cost: $237 (estimated; furniture only)

This plan is the cheapest and probably would happen most quickly. It is a workspace table top and a couple of table legs resting on top of the BESTA unit we already have. Annoyingly, a full BESTA set up won’t work in this space as it is about 1.5″ too wide. The top unit is an EFFEKTIV wall unit, and under it is a single shelf spanning the width of the space between the two billys. I’d install some of our bookcase lights under the shelf for a more lighting, and have a framed corkboard under that.

The pros of this set up are: ease in hiding wires, more table top workspace, not seeing the back of the iMac when you walk in the door, least expensive, utilizes the BESTA.
The cons of this set up are: The iMac and the printer would take up a significant amount of room on the table top, and for some reason, I feel like it lessens the sophistication of the look.

Plan #3; Built-in Effektiv + Billy

cost: $ 750 (estimated; furniture only)

Ah! Expensive. Plan #3 includes the two Billys with extension units that are present in the other plans, with EFFEKTIV units on the floor and wall in between them. A dining table turned desk is pulled out in the room.

The pros of this set up are: Drawers, wallspace.
The cons of this set up are: Expense.

Once IKEA releases those deeper billy bookcases, I think we’ll have a better idea of the ultimate cost and the possibilities of what we can do here. I’m going a little nuts waiting!

Living + Workspace Series:
• (09/15/11) Living + Workspace Layouts
• (09/29/11) The Midas Touch ← mood board
• (10/04/11) Building Our Own Coffee Table
• (11/11/11) Living + Workspace Update
• (11/14/11) Bookcases
• (11/22/11) Painting a Projector Screen
• (03/30/12) Before + After: Antique Lamp
• (04/06/12) Before + After: Front Door
• (06/19/12) Living + Workspace: Current Layout and Mood
• (06/20/12) Living + Workspace: A Revealing Update

Living + Workspace layouts

Posted by Jesyka D'Itri Marés on 11 Comments

At some point last week we FINALLY measured our living room (this has been on our to-do list for a couple of months at least), which allowed me to start playing with layouts that incorporate office furniture. The changeover affecting 3 rooms (in our apartment, at least). It’s funny how things work like that; I was not expecting to be living in this apartment much after Laelia turned one, and would start to really need her own space. I thought the nursery/office would work great for us while we remained in this here, and it would have been fine if we were able to move when we wanted(planned!!!) to. Since that is off the table, I have spent the last two months coming to terms with the fact that we have to rearrange/move out a lot of furniture in order to give Laelia her own space. So, instead of getting my panties in a twist, I’m trying to make the best of it, and consider it another opportunity to learn more about what I can do. I knew this would be tricky, but I feel like this is trickier than I had anticipated.

Here are the layouts of both rooms prior to said changeover: The furniture swap is going something like this: temperpedic twin bed (stored at my parents)  Laelia’s room office furniture  dining room turned workspace side chairs from the living room  kitchen (more on this later) dining room table  my parents See the interesting little circle there?

So, essentially we are giving up our dining set to make room for our office furniture, which was hard to do at first, but I’ve accepted it. We have a breakfast nook in the kitchen. We don’t need two tables to eat on. We don’t need a formal dining set at this point in our lives. Laelia needs her own space, I need a more cohesive work space, and our family needs more togetherness. So we’ve rearranged some furniture. This is what our living room looks like as I type in it:

We moved the projector to the wall with the heater on it, because we can’t really put furniture on that wall anyway. We lost like, 10 or 15 inches on our overall screen size (we project onto the wall), but OH WELL. I’ve been whining about our projector taking up 12 feet of wall space since we moved in here. Now I have that whole wall! WEE! We are also using our dining room table as the coffee table and it’s kinda fun for now. And as we are waiting around to swap out furniture and sell some stuff off, I’m working on the ideal new layout for the living + workspace, but I can’t seem to settle on anything! There are some looks I know I love, but I don’t see how it can accommodate ALL the things we want this space to do. This space needs to store the following;

• basics: books, magazines, notebooks
• files: house files & work files… & being a designer my work files usually contain boxes of samples.
• art papers: sketch journals, drawing pads of varying sizes, printer paper of various weights and stocks
• sewing: sewing machine, fabric, sewing kit, quilting set, buttons, trims, scraps, yarn, knitting needles, crochet hooks
• painting: my acrylic paints, oil paints, model paint, box of paint brushes, watercolors, gouche, pastels, prisma color pencils, copex markers
• general crafting: scrapbook paper, gift wrap, cards, feathers, beads, glue guns, small tools, various scissors and punches, glues, ribbons
• our entire lego collection — could potentially fill a whole BILLY bookshelf by itself
• photographs: oh man, organizing our photographs has been on my to-do list forever
• electronics: iMac, printer/scanner, external HD, netbook, spare wires and plugs, a modem, wireless router, chargers, work MacBook Pro (when not at work)
• photography: a DSLR, two digital cameras, a digital camcorder, a tripod, some lights
• office supplies: tape, tacks, clips, pens, staples, etc.

Wow, I’m exhausted just writing that. If anyone has actually read all of that, I’m sure you’re tired too. I guess a question might be, why do we want all of this in the same space? Mostly, I know that I at least am tired of things being all over the house. I’ve stated before how I’m sick of having my computer in one room, fabric in three different rooms, yarn in two different rooms, my easel collecting dust on a closet shelf, projects being left out and worked on in 3 different rooms, and never having what I need where I need it. Ugh.

In addition to storing many different things, this space needs to allow us to do many different things. We need the space to have these zones:

• 2 computer stations: one larger area for my iMac and possibly hooking up a second monitor. I prefer the printer/scanner to be with in sitting reach. The second area can be a little bit more mobile w/ the MacBook Pro coming and going almost everyday, but we still would like to have a second designated computer station.
• photo studio: I take a lot of photos of objects. It would be great to have a dedicated zone for this, with access to natural light.
• workspace: a surface to do hands-on projects, i.e. LEGO, working w/ a dremel, model painting, small scale drawing, writing, assembling envelopes, gluing, glittering, cutting, organizing, etc. I think this space could double as a cutting space for fabric.
• sewing: omg if I could leave my sewing machine out PERMANENTLY…
• drawing & painting studio: (PLEASE?!) omg if I could leave my easel out PERMANENTLY…
• oversized corkboard: divided into sections for inspiration for different projects
 mailing center: a little space to keep stamps and envelopes and checks to pay our bills, and a calendar!

I know I want a built-in look on my back wall, but I just can’t figure out if I want to have it solid book cases and storage with the desks and workstations pulled out, or if I want to have any of the workstations part of the the built-in. LAYOUT DILEMMA! lol.  Also, I’m probably not going to be keeping my old office furniture, but it stays until I find a replacement…

Found via pinterest; I would love more info for credits if you are in the know!

Chotda’s Library

Left: The Marion House Book, found via Apartment Therapy Right: The office of Trine of Ferm Living, found via Design*Sponge

Have I forgotten anything? Probably. Wow, that feels good to have that all written down! Alright, so now that we know what we need to do in our workspace, we have to work on making it happen. There is also an entire section of this room we haven’t discussed yet; our living space. We are also concerned with how these to sections of the same room will interact with each other. What is the vantage point of the projector screen from each workstation? Also, now that our computers will be in the same room as our entertainment system, we’d like to have the ability to connect them to our stereo and to our projector, which is a wiring problem that thankfully hubby seems interested in and motivated to solve.

This post seems to help illuminate the difference between design for function and purpose and design for decoration, as I have barely touched on or thought about how this space will be decorated–colors, patterns, objects, etc. I feel I have to have a good foundation for all of those objects first; I must identify the needs, then consider my decor options after I have a strong layout. Suggestions are welcome! A mood board comes next!

Follow my inspirations on my living + workspace pinterest board. :)

Living + Workspace Series:
• (09/29/11) The Midas Touch ← mood board
• (10/04/11) Building Our Own Coffee Table
• (10/13/11) Living + Workspace; Built-in Sketches
• (11/11/11) Living + Workspace Update
• (11/14/11) Bookcases
• (11/22/11) Painting a Projector Screen
• (03/30/12) Before + After: Antique Lamp
• (04/06/12) Before + After: Front Door
(06/19/12) Living + Workspace: Current Layout and Mood
• (06/20/12) Living + Workspace: A Revealing Update


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