Posts tagged ‘Art Room’

September 20, 2011

Desking it Out

by Cait

Yes, the title is a terrible pun.

As I mentioned, we’ve been working on the Closet Office recently. In the photos above you’ll notice the desk surface we were working with was quite small (the desk was about 47 inches but the workable space was about 25 inches, with space behind the left monitor for cables, a lamp, etc). We increased our desk to a 96 in long surface, which allows the monitors to be placed side by side instead of at an angle to each other.

I’d like to take a second to say thank you for all your color suggestions on the last post! It was so fun to read your opinions. We really planned on going with Spun Honey or Churchill Hotel Hazy Yellow, but a trip to Lowe’s changed our minds. I don’t have any pictures for you just yet (the computer with Photoshop is still disconnected), but I updated our Paint Colors graphic (that’s a new section filed under Source List, but the blog re-org is another story).

You’ll notice that it’s quite different the general trend we started with the other colors in our house, but we were in Lowe’s buying supplies for the desk surface and scored a $3 pint of Valspar’s Deep Peri (from the Waverly line). It was a spur-of-the-moment choice to buy the can, and we ultimately decided to go ahead use it instead of going with a “safer” option like one of our already-owned colors. It’s definitely bold. A take-your-breath-away kind of bold. But we think we like it. (Kind of shocking, right?) Fortunately it’s only paint, so if we end up hating the choice we still have our already-owned options.

I also wanted to mention some of the ideas we’re thinking about for organization.


I saw this post on Unplggd a while back, which led me to the above photo, where Rasterboy cut a Ribba picture ledge in half and combined it with an Ekby Tony shelf to create a monitor riser. I think we can create something similar without trekking down to Ikea (which is about 2 hours away).


I can’t remember how I ran across this sold-long-ago Etsy listing, but I love it! Here’s hoping we can rig up something similar.


I ran across this desk on Pinterest fairly recently, and I can’t stop thinking about what a lovely stain it is. I think I remember reading that she used driftwood stain, but now I can’t find where I read it. While we were at Lowe’s I saw a Sunbleached stain by Rust-Oleum, but I was worried the color wouldn’t look right with the wall color we used. We ended up just oiling our desktop, but I’m thinking maybe we will sand it down and gray things up a bit if we decide we don’t love the natural look.


Our closet opening is just the right size that we may be able to to mount an Ekby Alex drawer unit beneath the desk surface (unless we dedide it would take up too much knee room).

In addition to the Alex, we want to add a couple of chunky white shelves above our computer monitors. We will probably use this method as laid out by Emily of Merrypad.

Just a few of the office-related things on my mind today. Anyone else working on a office update? Shocked we went with such a bold color?

September 15, 2011

Colorful Additions and a Paint Question

by Cait

Complete cop out on post titles tonight. I’ll try harder next time.

Just a short post to show you the new pictures of the Art Room that I didn’t have with me when I posted earlier.

This yellow chair was picked out of the neighbors’ trash one rainy evening about a year ago. After a coat of $4 spray paint later it’s looking quite cheery.

We found this vintage pulldown map on eBay. It’s about 68×70 inches, and with shipping and the french cleats we bought to hang it the total came to about $90.

have I ever mentioned that the clock is from my childhood bedroom? it hung over the closet there, too

I forgot to mention earlier that we’re planning to change up the desk surface in the Closet Office. We were going to use a Lagan Countertop from Ikea, but the cost to drive to the closest Ikea plus that of the counter itself comes to about $100, and that’s just not feasible right now. Fortunately we have quite a few more of the 50 cent Ikea L-brackets we used for the current desk surface, so we are plotting cheaper options for a new. longer desk.

Otherwise, the only real plan we have is to paint the closet before installing the new desk. We have about half a gallon of the same color we painted the hallway (Valspar’s Churchill Hotel Hazy Yellow), and most of a gallon of mossy-green Oops paint. Other ideas we have kicked around are terracotta red, navy, gray. The conservative (and cheap) side of me says to use the paint from the hallway, especially with all the other bold things in the room. The impromptu poll I conducted on Twitter voted navy, but I don’t know how that would look with the blue walls everywhere else in the room. There are 10 paint chips over the monitor on the right at the moment, and I can’t pick.

Anyone have any ideas about closet colors? Desk options? I’m tempted to just go the cheap route and use the hallway color and construct a desk from all the scrap wood we have hanging around.

PS- I still owe you an updated design board, but Robert should be home from class soon. Maybe I’ll have knock-off Emeco chair pictures and a design board tomorrow.

September 15, 2011

The Room With All the Art

by Cait

Wow, thanks for all the sweet comments on the last post! I guess I may have to talk about our budget more often!

I’ve had a quirky, not-everyone-will-get-it style for most of my life, possibly even before the days of reading my sister’s cast-off Seventeen magazines (the “My Room” section was always my favorite). Of course, in those days I mostly daydreamed about what my room would look like and focused on expressing my quirky side with fashion. (I use that term loosely; it involved thrift store tshirts and a lot of pining for a leather biker jacket. If I had remembered to put a zipper in my Target bag dress I’d probably have worn that, too.)

These days I’m a little more West Elm than Spencer’s Gifts or Pottery Barn Kids, and I no longer want to paint clouds on my ceiling, but the soft spot for rustic & quirky mixed with bright colors remains. I’m beginning to realize that our style is probably best described as eBay Chic, or Rustic & Repurposed. I know it’s en vogue now to decorate in what people call the “collected” look, but around our house we just call it “buy what you love” and/or “make it work”.

I don’t know if it’s the same for everyone, but I feel like certain rooms in our house embody our style better than others. The rooms that feel the most “us” are probably the Art Room, the Library and the back porch (or at least what the back porch will one day become). Others are a constant struggle, like the living room and dining room.

those green chairs are so gone, and we added a little something-something to the wall

desperately in need of paint, a new chair, desk surface, and maybe a new curtain

The Art Room is very, very slowly shaping up. I didn’t really touch on it in this post, but it pains me to work on this room sometimes, since I don’t get to actually use it as my office every day. In spite of that, I’m trying to make it a space that makes me happy, both because I spend a lot of time in it (granted, usually with my head in the Closet Office blogging) and because it’s visible when you walk down the hallway.

I am drawn to a variety of styles, and sometimes it takes me a while to figure how the best way to mesh everything together. Fortunately with the advent of Pinterest the direction of the room seems to have gotten clearer (or maybe I’m just more confident in that fact that my ideas are not completely wacky).  I am still smitten with Sara’s art room, but I also pinned a bunch of fun, colorful, slightly rustic rooms on my Art Room Inspiration board.

Curbside Chair

A while back we found this chair in a neighbor’s trash and painted it yellow. Since then I had Robert spray paint it a brighter, more golden yellow (that coincidentally matches our curtains perfectly, though I didn’t even have the fabric when we picked the paint). I know that I could have spent a lot of time sanding it down, staining it, and giving it a nice glossy coat of poly, it would have had a very nice Chilton Academy-esque look to it, but it was destined to replace another curbside chair in front of the rolltop and I thought that would have been too much wood.

For the Ikea Jonas desk we are working on a chair that is very similar to the Emeco Navy Chair With Wood Seat, which we were lucky enough to get from my dad’s garage a while back. The Closet Office will get another chair we found in the neighbor’s trash, which we hope will look like this Pottery Barn chair when we are done with it (though we may not stain ours quite that dark).

from Flickr; pinned here

Ironically, the walls in the Art Room are almost completely bare (aside from the shelves we added a while back). Fortunately browsing Pinterest often reminds me of things I’ve wanted for years but then chalked up as never-gonna-happen and tried to forget about. Most recent example: pulldown maps. I have wanted one of these maps pretty much ever since watching Sleepless in Seattle. (“Look, one, two, three, four, there’s like twenty-six states between here and there.”) After seeing the above (and several others) I decided I finally needed to make it happen, so we ended up buying one on eBay (similar to the US map here).

seen on Design*Sponge; pinned here

Also, after seeing a lot of fantastic linen and burlap pinboards I remembered seeing a pinboard made with a coffee bag a while back. Fortunately Google came to my rescue, and a few minutes later I had found the Design*Sponge post I was thinking of, and also ordered a coffee bag of my very own from Etsy.

I should have an updated design board, pictures of the pulldown map, yellow chair and maybe the Emeco-lookalike for you tonight, as Robert will be in class late.

 Anyone else drawn to several different decorating styles? Or want to paint something like clouds in your childhood bedroom?

March 14, 2011

World’s Shortest Hiatus

by Cait

Good news everyone!  I’m back from my whole dramaticI’m taking a break” thing.  At least for now.

We haven’t done much in the way of house-related projects recently, unless you count washing dishes and opening & closing the curtains.  Robert is on spring break from school this week, I am working on a header for a friend’s blog, and then there was some much-needed bike riding, laying on the beach, hanging out with friends, and reading by Robert’s parents’ pool sprinkled into the past few weeks.  (Apologies to those of you who still have snow.  Hopefully you will be slightly less annoyed if I mention I didn’t actually swim at the beach or in the pool?) 

We did move this chair into the art room in front of the roll top.  We’re thinking about spray painting it a brighter, glossy  yellow since I’m not above bastardizing painting wood that was pretty gnarly to begin with.

We added more stumps to our stump graveyard.  A piece of curb appeal for which I am sure our neighbors love us.

I have recently resisted buying a discontinued West Elm Manzanita Wall Art on eBay, which my wallet thanks me for, but my mostly bare walls do not.  I have also all but changed my mind about the living room curtains I have yet to make.  I still want to use my Lotta Jansdotter stencils, but I’m having cold feet about the fabric I bought (it is nothing like the gorgeous linen on the left below), and since my recent love affair with I have painters taped several swatches on the wall (occasionally they fall off while watching Criminal Minds, which is kind of hilarious).

The current plan is to go ahead with the stenciled curtains as planned, and then ignore the eye-rolling from Robert while I try to order this and/or this before they go out of stock again (ok, so they only have 2 yards left of the one on the right, so I probably won’t be getting that anytime soon).


Maybe I will take a picture of the other swatches I have taped to the wall for y’all soon.  Though that would probably discourage me from finishing the stenciled curtains.  And if someone could please go ahead and remind me to post pictures of my snazzy birthday gifts from last month, that would be greeeeat.

February 26, 2011

Measure Twice, Buy Once

by Cait

This post is pretty much a random stream of thought fueled by coffee.

After reading Micha’s comment on my last post, I started thinking about using the Gislev in the art room again.  So I cleaned up the place where projects go to die art room, and stole the Gislev from the master bedroom (which I must say made the floor on my side of the bed look very naked).

While it doesn’t look too dark anymore (I may not have mentioned in this post that when I tested it for size it looked too dark for the room), but the Gislev is 4’4 x 6’5 and the rugs I’ve been looking at are all 3’6 x 5’6 – way too small, so glad I didn’t go ahead and order something!  I can’t decide if the Gislev is winning me over (and Robert is working on a friend’s car, so he hasn’t seen it yet aside from the picture I texted him).  And the Oh. My. Hell. moment of the day?  The much coveted  Option C from my last post is $345 in a 5×8.  So in short? Gislev it is for now!  (And also, if one of both of those chairs stays in the room, they need to have their seats covered again.)

Speaking of rethinking, a recent Apartment Therapy post (and the fact that the shelves we were going to use are “last chance” at Ikea) has me rethinking the build-in in the library.  That will be another post in itself, but it means that we need a place for our two Ikea Expedits from the library to go to die.

Messy Corner, I see a shelf in your future.

I have no idea what that means for door I had to have from ReStore.

While we’re looking at new pictures of the art room, to clear up any confusion: the closet office.  Currently it is hidden with a shower curtain from Target (that we originally bought for another purpose) when not in use, but  I will be making a curtain from the swatch on the wall soon.  Hopefully we can get the countertop from Ikea soon so the desk can go all the way across.

Oh, and when I stopped by Merrypad to oogle Emily’s Pebble rug in her bedroom?  (Not that I can afford that either.)  I found Zelda, and decided she needs to come live somewhere in the house.  Maybe the art room, maybe not.

So to recap,  I think this means the art room rug shopping crisis has been averted for now.

February 25, 2011

At a Standstill

by Cait

When I posted yesterday I mentioned my rug paralysis as far as what I think will play nicely with the new curtains in the art room.

I have scoured Overstock,, World Market, Target, etc etc, but at the moment I keep coming back to these 5 on  I think I’m making it harder on myself than it really needs to be because I keep forgetting that it’s an art room and that the point was to find something that looks nice but can get paint and glue all over it.

See how I overcomplicate things?

a) Surya Frontier Collection FT50 Grey Rug $145
b) Surya Fallon Collection FAL100 Yellow Rug $165
c) Surya Frontier Collection FT40 Grey Rug $145
d) DC Mills South Seas Collection 90100 Natural Rug $89.76
e) Kas Oriental Yazd Collection Harmony Ivory Rug $144

I love a, b and c (ok, who am I kidding, I love a & c and love, love, love b to the point where I’d almost be willing to paint the guest room grey, and give my beloved Tarnby the boot).  Sadly when I look at it with the design board for the room I really feel like the less exciting d is still the way to go.

Would that make for waaay too much jute in our house?

February 24, 2011

Landing Pattern

by Cait

Now that most of the house has new curtains, I’m starting to notice that while I love mixing patterns, certain things just aren’t working.

Ikea Gislev rug beside the bed?  Sorry, this means you.  It’s been great, but now you’re cramping my style.  We’re over.  Maybe you’ll get along with the living room “entryway”.

On the other hand, our new West Elm pillow looks lovely with the curtains (at least until it decides to migrate somewhere else in the house).

And it would look nice with these West Elm sheets

And all of the above? I think it could look good with this rug.  (Although the website says it’s actually grey, which makes me nervous. Maybe it’s greige, that would be nice/perfect.)

And because we all know that things like to migrate around in our house, it also looks quite nice in the art room/office…  Which is good, because I STILL can’t decide on a rug for in there, especially since Megan mentioned on my last post about the art room/office. So. Many. Choices!

Does anyone else have competing patterns or rug shopping paralysis?

February 22, 2011

Corner Office

by Cait

I was ridiculously excited last week when my backordered fabric arrived from about a month early.  I wasted no time in making three panels for the art room and while we were at Ikea this past weekend we bought clips to hang them.  I don’t know that I love the look of the clips, but I do enjoy not having to stand on a chair to open/close the curtains thanks to the fact that they slide easily.  (Ok, who am I kidding, I rarely opened the old curtains, I mainly left that task to Robert.)

As a quick reminder, here is the before.

Art Room

And the (hurriedly taken before the sun went down yesterday) afters.  (We’ll take better photos this weekend.)

The fabric we used is Premier Prints Suzani Slub Texture Yellow/White, and we like it so much that we’re using Premier Prints Suzani Chocolate/Natural in our bedroom.

Aside from the curtains, we are making very slow progress on this room.  We having painted the closet or started on the new closet desk (the hairpin legs arrived, but we couldn’t fit a 96 in counter top in a Beetle with three adults- go figure).  As far as what to do next, I’m thinking about having the metal side chair powder coated (it’s pretty rusty from living in my parents garage, and the idea of something tougher than spray paint is appealing), or picking/ordering a rug.  I recently found one on Overstock similar to the West Elm Ferris rug, but I think I’m still leaning towards jute or sisal…

February 3, 2011

Out of Order

by Cait

Sometimes I pick things a little out of order.  But it’s ok, I certainly know how to have a good time doing it.  Tonight for example, it’s raining (but not leaking like last time!), Robert had class, and I am staring at fabric swatches, both real and digital.  I think I am destined to have a binder ring of fabric swatches.  (I have gotten the urge to make new curtains for preeeetty much the entire house, but I’m going to try and limit myself to maybe making some pillows.)

I’m currently loving Premier Prints ZigZag Village Rust in the art room.  I really wish I could see it with my backordered curtain fabric (UH-217, top left)  sometime before April, but in the interest in getting things done, I’m going to go with my gut and order enough for the closet curtain.

all fabric from

As for the kitchen window, you can see I thought I was going to like Waverly Leaf Garland Spa (UH-708) so I bought a yard of it.  Once I got it in the kitchen (and texted Robert a picture) I was leaning towards Waverly Sun N Shade Lenox Horizon (UF-784).  Then I remembered that I had just bought a new ironing board cover (Waverly Sun N Shade Lovely Lattice Lagoon UD-517H), so I stuck the package in the window, further confusing myself.  Thankfully when Robert got home we decided on Sun N Shade Lenox Horizon.


Oh and?  The closet color is changing because of all this fabric picking.  The pallet is pretty much staying the same, but instead of painting the closet Morrocan Spice and getting a more neutral fabric for the closet curtain, we’re going to use the leftover paint from our hallway and use the Premier Prints ZigZag Village Rust.


February 1, 2011

Office Space, the Sequel

by Cait

I finally got an email regarding my fabric purchase for the art room curtains today.

Unfortunately, the following item(s) are currently on backorder:
Premier Prints Suzani Slub Texture Yellow/White( UH-217 ) ETA: 3/21/2011
The ETA is the expected time of arrival at our warehouse, and not the day you should expect to receive it.

Life is sad!

Aside from the crushing news about the curtain fabric, I’ve decided to rethink the desk surface. I’m pretty sure I want to go with the Lagan Countertop from Ikea (even though it will have to be cut down slightly in width and depth) because I am a pain in the ass like that I like the idea of a more wood in the room. And also? I may have fallen in love with Just a little bit. I decided to use some of the 28″ 3-rod ones for the closet desk. I want to beg politely ask Robert’s best friend, Ryan, make some of them for me (and maybe teach me how to make them), but I was curious about the way the ones online were made and they were on sale.

Ryan made this, so hairpin legs should be a cakewalk, right?

But back to the design board. You may have noticed the Crate&Barrel Delta Side Chair has been with the Navy Side Chair w/ Wood Seat from DWR. Don’t worry, I have not lost my mind and decided to blow our whole budget on one chair. My mom has had one of these types of chairs as her desk chair for years, and my dad has one of these in the garage with a broken seat. When I asked if I could have it he said yes! Woohoo! We can probably get away with just two chairs, but I am ever so slightly tempted to order a knock-off Eames shell chair (since I have yet to find one of those along the side of the road. coughDanielcough) or some of these metal stools.

Stool image from Overstock, Eames chair from Hive

However, if we don’t spend a ton on the chairs I’m hoping we can buy a set of lockers for storing the rolls of paper/etc that seem to accumulate in corners. I am hoping that we can find some lockers locally, because all the ones I’ve seen online have REALLY expensive shipping (of course).

left image from here, right image from here

Here’s hoping the gods of lockers and Eames chairs smile upon me.