Dreaming about… open shelving

Even though the kitchen has to still wait till I’ll be able to begin any renovation, as my Mom’s bedroom is first on the list, I does not stop me from thinking a lot about it. It will be a huge project, as I have to combine it with the living room make over. It will take a lot of time, effort and probably money, so I guess I will get to it someday in the early spring.

But to sweeten the waiting time, I will share some ideas that pop up in my head. First, what it is like now:

old kitchen

The cupboards are older than me… But we can’t afford getting new ones, so it will be a lot of playing around it, using what we have and making smart choices. I want to get rid of everything above the counter.

old kitchen

To the right is a very strange, wasted space leading to my Mom’s bedroom. The division from the rest of the living room made some sense 20 years ago, but not anymore.

old kitchen

The other side of this weird room/hallway next to the kitchen, DIY-ed by my Mom with furniture… all of it has to go!

And now some examples of spaces that make me smile and inspire me:

Open shelving

I would like to use as much open shelving as possible. It opens up the small space, forces you to edit your stuff and makes even ordinary things into decorating objects. I am not sure if the under-counter open shelving will be an option in our situation, but for sure wall shelves are realistic.

Open shelving

I love how the open shelving and glass doors open up the space. I also like the nice crisp whiteness of the shelves contrasted with darker wall’s color. I am planning on painting walls in the kitchen vibrant, red (with slight terracotta shade).

dining nook

But what I am missing the most is a nice, cozy dining space. I want to use the space by the window, to create a place for four diners. A round table would probably work best, but this one above is also beautiful. I am still not sure what style I want, that will probably come up later.

dining nook by a window

I love this clean, inviting dining place. I would love to create something like this in my space.

Let’s see a few more photos of inspiring kitchen spaces:

Open shelving and dining nook

Open shelving and vibrant colors

Simply stunning! I wish I could use such dark colors, but I am not living alone ;-)

Just add color :)

I can't stand the color, but love the lively vibe


Now that’s a really great idea

I am searching for ideas to use for the two free walls in my bedroom, and one at the home office. And I think I found something to play with!

I found this on Apartment Therapy, or rather their sister-site, Unplggd. I think this is a very clever idea and I love the esthetics of it. Visual art inspired by music… what’s not to love?

I am seeing a variation of it, directly on the wall, in a shade up or down from the wall’s color. I love the effect of the first one, which would be difficult to replicate… I never do exactly the same thing, I love when I get an inspiration, when the wheels begin to work inside my mind.

There are limits to design.

I have seen this “cute” design on Apartment Therapy the other day. I am glad I am not the only who felt there is nothing “cute” about using someone’s heritage to create a cat’s shelter. And here is the offensive item:

And even if there are some Native Americans who have nothing against that particular kind of cultural appropriation, it doesn’t make it alright. Native American tradition in particular suffers from this kind of abuse. From “fashion” choices of using headpieces, to “Pocahontas” Halloween costumes. It’s as if the people don’t exist anymore, and their traditions, in very simplified, childish, flat versions. They throw away the spiritual meaning of the items and use it as selfish tools of “self-expression”.

I think it wouldn’t find as much acceptance if the for example the cat house was made of big teffilin box (the prayer box religious Jews put on during prayers), or in the shape of pope’s head-piece. But with Native Americans? Everything goes.

Look at my ideas! Do you think I can make some good money on those?


DIY lamp

As I wrote earlier on, I was planning on trying and saving the ugly old lamp I had in my office. It was an old paper lantern, and the plan was to use one of the ideas you can see online, like the one below (from design*sponge)



I am not sure if it was a good decision to make stripes shaped that way. I wanted to make something more fluffy and messy. Maybe I should have done similar to the original? Anyway, the result:

hmm…. of course the cord needs to be painted or something. I don’t know…

I am not happy with the result. It was cheap, and costed only the time… But I am pretty sure I will buy a real one the moment I save enough money.

Now that I am back from traveling and visiting friends and family, I am getting back to work. First: finishing the closet’s doors, then attaching a mirror to one of them. Next will be putting together bed… the mattress is already out, my Mom unpacked it and aired it out for the time I was away.

Which means… I will actually have a place to sleep soon! Out from the uncomfortable living room sofa!

More light!

I’ve been thinking about the appropriate lighting for both rooms for ages already. Low budget aside, I just can’t seem to make my mind. The general idea is more or less clear: something modern for the office, and a more traditional, black, iron candelabrum for the bedroom.

But at the same time I was thinking about placing something different to the office, not the typical set… But would it fit? I have seen many photos where fancy lamp added a great vibe to otherwise stern or lacking in surprises office. So from the more office-y lamps I like some of these (all photos are from Polish online auctions, and I believe are by Polish producers):

Really dont’ know what I think about that one. Simple, but I am not sure if it’s fine with the space.

Now this one is really cool. It’s called “robot” and I think it matches perfectly! I like the industrial feel, and the lamps have some photography mood to themselves as well. I am not sure about the installation here… it looks like it’s the style that goes inside, that it needs a hole, which would make it impossible for my place :-/

Then there are the non-office styles, like that one:

This one I am actually planning for the bedroom. what about placing this kind of classic lamps in non-classic places? Hmmmm….


Then there are also the wide, but flat lamps, often used in bathrooms, which might be interesting to use in an office. This one is a more elegant version of that style:

I think it’s quite nice for the general lighting. I am afraid to hang something too small, to emphasize the tiny size of the room. I feel that a bigger lamp would really add to the room.


With the bedroom the choice is kind of easier. I wanted black iron to match the bed, I wanted the classic style without being too “romantic” or “fluffy”, so clean lines and no extra swirls or additions. The limit was mostly my budget, as to how many arms in the lamps I could afford. I found something like that (same line as the one above):

This one is called “surmia” and I like the very simple, clean lines. I am not sure about the bulbs thought, as I would like to get the energy-saving types. Do they make them in fancy flame shapes? I am afraid the common twisted shape would be a huge blow to it.

The above lamp is “Neptun”. It’s also pretty simple. The color is not perfect and I am not sure how I feel about the “plates” under each lamp… But it’s cheaper than the other one, so I am also checking it out.

I am almost convinced I should get the surmia, though, with max arms I can afford.

Coming back to the office… Yesterday I started to think about another option. At the moment that’s what I have:

I can’t believe that was the only photo I found with somewhat visible lamp. Anyway, you can see that it’s the typical paper ball. Rather small… dirty, old, covered with paint splashes and what not. I have seen many awesome DIY project of making this kind of balls into featherly awesomeness, like that one on Design*Sponge:

I couldn’t find gray craft paper, so I will try with white packing paper ;-) I will see, I can’t make it worse, right? And who knows, I might avoid the dilemma of buying a new one! I will be working on it today, right after I finish putting together dombas closet and… bed! yes, I am done with painting and carpeting in the bedroom, I will update when I can download photos :)