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Full Version: House Of The Gods! Well, actually, it is just my lil' apartment...(the home decorating thread)
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bklynhermit
oh, pepper! you have such a wonderful home!

there's something about it that reminds me a lot of my best friend's house from when i was 10 years old. i think the color of the walls, and they way they're accented by all the pretty wood furniture?

and, getting down to the nitty gritty here, there's really not a thing i would change. i think the sideboard looks fab. the only thing i would do if unleashed on this place would be to paint. which apparently you can't do.

i do, however, have one funny idea. in my art scene days, i knew this artist who was part of a residency program funded by the swiss government. he had a teensy little live/work studio that, because it was owned by the government and rented to guest artists for a year at a time, was pretty institutional. well somehow he happened upon a shitload of rugs. i don't know if he had a friend somewhere with too many rugs, found them on a street corner, spent time collecting them at thrift stores and garage sales. no idea how he got all these rugs in a year on his tiny stipend. but he somehow ammassed enough rugs (of about the same quality of the one you already have in your living room) to cover the entire floor of the studio. and it looked SO COOL! they were all different in size and color, and they overlapped in the space from wall to wall. it was a really fun and offbeat look, as well as being a great way for him to cover up the studio's cement floors AND customize a temporary space. it made his studio look like a gypsy caravan; it was beautiful.

you've mentioned here that you have grey institutional carpeting you're not wild about -- maybe you could just go crazy with the rugs? you can probably find lots at garage sales and thrift stores. sometimes National Wholesale Liquidators and stores like that have them, too. if you live in a religiously diverse area, muslim groceries and religious supply stores sell prayer rugs (they run about 3x5) for really good prices.
bklynhermit
actually, i took a second look at your living room rug, and actually this guy's rugs were nowhere near as nice as yours. but it was still an extremely cool effect which would look amazing in your apartment. also, can i just say that the that textile wall hanging thingie behind the dresser and shelves in your bedroom is EXACTLY what i'm looking for to recover my futon. and cannot find anywhere... for some reason every indian bedspread i come across is the wrong colors, or really makes me dizzy to look at, or is otherwise wrong. where'd you get it, if you don't mind me asking?

and amywoman, you see, i knew you could do it. i'm not so much a cheerleader as a psychic, really.
pepper
thanky, thanky chicas, such nice girlies you are!
i would LOVE to just cover the floors with carpets but i live in a teensy wee little town where it's hard to find stuff second hand and inexpensive. i used to live in toronto and one time i found an incredible 7x13 foot hand loomed afghani carpet on the sidewalk. in. someone's. trash. can you even believe it? dang, i love the city. not enough to move back but still. (that carpet on my floor was my grandfather's, i prolly couldn't afford to buy one that nice myself.)
the thing on my wall is a 60 year old hand loomed, hand blocked cotton spread from isfahan iran that i bought from a woman in kensington market for about $45. i have a couple of smaller ones that i am hording, they are impossible to find anymore. but you can get reproductions here and there. i saw some on the drive in vancouver for not too much money. they aren't the same quality but i think they might be a bit more washable and they were definitely just as nice to look at. look around, i'm sure you can find one somewhere.
doodlebug
Hah! bklyn's a psychic cheerleader! LOL!

I actually don't think I have any more slogan-y cheers in me. But...

YAY, AMY! YAY, AMY! HIP-HIP-HOORAY!!

*jumps up and down, shakes iridescent pom-poms*

Who else did their 15 minutes?

I haven't...I had a late working day. I can't decide if I will or won't. I guess I will. It's only 15 minutes.

pepper, you're place is so cute. I love how colourful it is - just like you! :-) I love that you have a sock monkey, too! And that is a gorgeous work of art over your couch. Hey, have you ever tried changing out the bulbs in your lamps for fluorescent...for your plants, I mean?

Ok. I will go put the leftovers away and do my 15 minutes. Ok!
doodlebug
Ok, did it! I took an easy 15 minute job....i.e.: no trash bags involved, or things to move around. Got that tie/scarf rack hung up in my closet, sorted through all my jewelry, and hung it on the rack.

Actually, it worked quite well. The rack is a small, coated wire one from Rubbermaid...the pegs are just small enough to hold fish hook earrings, and also works for pendants, bracelets, etc. It was nice to get it out of that dresser-drawer tangle! (Erm...and the ones off the floor as well...*ahem*.)

I am definitely going to need a light in there, though.

I think I'm going to go look at duvet covers this weekend. I don't like the denim one I bought after all. Too heavy for me, after all. *sigh* $60 down the drain...oh well, I'm sure there'll be a use for the denim, if nothing else!!

I also need to look around for a pair of cheap bamboo blinds this weekend, for the bedroom. The hideous beige apartment curtains must go!

I better make myself stick to ONLY looking at those two things...I'm liable to buy a bunch of paint months before I've got TIME to paint!
bklynhermit
i have to say it's amazing what half an hour over 2 days has done to my bedroom. i mean it's not FINISHED or anything, but wow.

i think this weekend is the big clothing purge. that should really help things.
crassy_mcnasty
oh doodle, i wanted to mention, i work at a nonprofit that has a domestic violence shelter and we're usually desperate for new toiletries, so thanks for the mention!

pepper, my mom is a pack rat too- at least yours is working on it, mine thinks it isn't a problem! you're house is awesome! i just love your dragon tapestry especially!

amy, your grandma's china sounds awesome. i'd love pics.

my mom gave me some really awesome china from ireland that she got in the 60's--i love love love it. i actually bought my china cabinet just so i could display it. it's in the pics of my house, but you can't see it well, i'll have to get a closeup someday.

woohoo for bklyn's new & improved bedroom!

ok, so finally here are the pics of my house: http://pg.photos.yahoo.com/ph/crassy_mcnasty/album?.dir=c170re2&.src=ph
amywoman
Yay for psychic cheerleading and iridescent pom-poms!

Glad people are seeing a difference. My next project is the foyer, which is very small and unfinished because it's missing trim. It's where the mail is sorted and I need a different system because this is just not working. I have a metric buttload of mail in the cute basket on the cute table. Not so organized looking.
amywoman
Wow, crassy, I LOVE LOVE LOVE your house. Can I say love some more?? Awesome craftsman style bungalow, from the looks of it. Am I right? I love the things you've sewn for it too, and the leaded glass windows, and your original doorknobs, and your doggie and kitty... and...

Wow, I could go on, but I should probably stop! Thanks for sharing those pictures!
crassy_mcnasty
thanks amy! it's actually not quite a bungalow, someone told me the style might be called 'cotswald cottage' but it isn't tudor, it's more like clapboard. here's a pic it has a very angular roof and looks a little like a chalet. but the inside has the bungalow look that i love so i did decorate it that way (w/arts & crafts style theme and some mission furniture). i also did some pennsylvania dutch touches and i'm dying to get a cuckoo clock.
treehugger
Pepper, you have such a cute house. I love the wall hangings, especially the one over the couch. Very, very funky. Love that look.

Crassy, I love your paint color in the garden room, the green? And have you tried www.rensup.com to find your backplates? I'm looking but I guess I can't see enough of your plate. Try here: http://www.rensup.com/Products/Cat-297.htm

Or maybe you could get one that is really similar and nobody would notice it wasn't the same. Trust me. I used to be renovating an older house and found lots of great stuff there. And, your cat looks just like Mojo, my boy. :-)
doodlebug
OMFG, I am such a bad, bad doodlebug. I spent wayyyy too much money today.

Oh well. Who needs to eat?

I JUST got home from a day spent shopping. Bamboo blinds, check. Duvet cover, check. Bed skirt? Why not, I'm sick of looking at the box spring. Hey...are those sheets on sale??????

Anyway, I'm going to take some tylenol for my poor, aching, post-shopping feet, and have some dinner, and I'll look at crassy's pics and come back!
doodlebug
Ha ha! crassy has Mr. Burns held captive!! :-)

crassy, your place is wonderful! I love all the wood trim, and the leaded windows are gorgeous. You’ve done such a fabulous job with the décor! I love all the little personal touches you’ve taken the time to do, like the graphic fabric stripe on the shower curtain, and the leaf stamps on the valances. It’s just lovely! And I so totally want a "poop deck" sign for my bathroom door!! Oh, and I just adore the tile in there, but you knew I would. And I showed George the pic of his kitty twin…sadly, he seemed more interested in the moth that flew by his head around the same time.

bklyn, I’m glad to hear it feels like you’re making progress! Those 15 minute bursts really do work, don’t they? It doesn’t seem like they should, logically, but then you see the results, and it totally makes sense.

amy, I think the phrase "metric buttload" just became my new favourite descriptor.

Ok, here’s a list of the bad things I did today.

2 sets of bamboo blinds
1 light olive green duvet cover
1 light olive green bedskirt
2 complete sets of sheets – 1 dark purple, 1 lilac
1 "zen" block tealight holder
2 sets mini lights
3 packages of wall hooks (11 per pack)
2 matchstick beach mats
1 small can light green paint
1 projection alarm clock

Who’s a bad doodlebug!? *presents bottom for spanking*

Okay, I wasn’t going to buy sheets. But they were $29 CAD per set. That is cheap for good sheets (cotton, 200 thread count), but the best part….they are PURPLE!!! And, I mean, I haven’t had new sheets in nine years. NINE YEARS, people! My existing sheets are hunter green, that’s how old they are!!! Plus the dark purple and the lilac would look cool as "mix and match."

The beach mats are destined to become an impromptu headboard.

The paint is just to test in the bathroom.

The projection alarm clock is because my old one is crap and barely works anymore, and also I’m now too old to read the LED display without my glasses.

The tealight holder is actually for the top of the black wall unit, to light up the electric guitar.

It could have been a lot worse!!! I talked myself out of going to my favourite clothing store...

* Edited to add that at least I didn't buy anything on credit. I totally get points for that!
amywoman
*spankies*!!! But yay!

ETA: but yay for all your new lovelies, I meant. :-)
bklynhermit
yay for retail therapy!

or just retail.

or whatever.

so i skipped my 15 minutes tonight so as to cook a really elaborate dinner (chickpea tagine and mango sorbet with a lovely salad and this incredible white whine) and watch Spellbound (the spelling bee documetary, not the Ingrid Bergman movie).

but it was worth it.

and i think now i'm going to rabidly reorganize roomie's CD shelf. it's really inefficient, and we've talked for months about ways to make it not suck, and today at work i finally had an idea.

which is a stopgap until i can make him transfer to binders and then box and store the cases if he wants.

so i will now drunkenly stay up till 4 am reorganizing CDs that don't even belong to me.
doodlebug
Hee! Retail therapy. You know, back when I trained for the rape crisis lines, they told us that shopping was a common coping mechanism for women who work with trauma victims...

I forgot to add four packages of 100 tealights to my list of sins. But they're practically a necessity. Like lightbulbs.

I did probably more than my 15 minutes today, but only because of the new bedding. I washed it all right away, and while it was washing, I threw away ALL my old hunter green sheets! (2 full sets.) Plus some extra mismatched pillow cases, and a few more objects that I was wishy-washily hanging onto for no good reason. YAY! I also did a quick vacuum, seeing as how 3/4 of the floor is now clear of stuff. And then I made the bed up with the olive green duvet cover/bedskirt, and I used the lilac sheets, 'cause they're nice and spring/summer-y. It looks very nice! It's a really fresh colour combination. I'm looking forward to sleeping in there tonight...

I'm thinking quite seriously about taking down the closet doors and putting a curtain up there. My closet is very deep considering it's an otherwise ordinary double-bifold-door apartment closet. I could hang the curtain behind the closet wall and not lose any real storage space. And then have a light behind the curtain. If only I could figure out where to store those big doors...

The projection part of the projection clock doesn't work. I'm so mad. I'm going to have to take it back. And THEN I'm going to have to argue with the returns clerk that I'm NOT stupid, I DO know how to work technology, and it IS broken, so give me my money back, dammit.

I already threw out my old alarm clock.
mouse
i am going to delurk!

the pictures in this thread are loverly.

i moved into a one bedroom apartment by myself about a month ago, and now that i have a "real" job, i have income to spend on decorating (not a huge amount, but more than i used to). i am excited about this.

my place is kind of a hodgepodge; i inherited a lot of furniture from the girl who lived here before, a table and a couch and some funny pink and white pinstriped upholstered armless chairs, and i have some lovely curtains (green cotton for the living room and white lace for the bedroom) and i framed a lot of illustrations from my gi-antic collection of oldschool childrens books and have them hanging on the walls.

i am very excited about having the place to myself while having the means to make it lovely (the last time i lived by myself, i was so poor that the only furniture i ended up buying was a $3.00 armchair from the local thriftstore; it cost too much to have it delivered and i didn't have a car, so my best friend and i pushed the chair home--luckily it had wheels--on the sidewalk, easily two miles away. no joke.)
bklynhermit
that sounds like my until-recently home decor situation, mouse. i'm lucky enough these days to have a little disposable income, but i don't know how long it'll last.

yesterday, in fact, i drew up a huge 'cure plan' with EVERYTHING that needs to be done to my place, from de-cluttering the landing strip to repainting the bathroom, and then i divided it up into 'things to buy', 'things i can do myself for free', etc. honestly the biggest part of the list was just reorganization and decluttering work which costs me nothing.
amywoman
I took last night off from my 15 minutes, but I've already cleaned the kitchen and bathroom today, minus the kitchen floor. The Mr. did the dishes.

I like the idea of 15 minutes but I find it hard to stick to it. Mostly because I like to finish things and I like to have long blocks of relaxing time rather than shorter blocks broken up by housework. It's hard for me to relax when I see undone things too.

I may sort the pile of mail today. Seems I'm always doing this, always steeling myself against the overpowering tidal wave of mail coming in. How do you folks keep track of the paper that comes into your house? Do you have any cute/attractive organizers or organization area? Pepper, since you're very organized, how do you do this?

In the foyer I have a basket and side table I bought from Cost Plus World Market on clearance about two years ago, and wedged underneath the table is a trash basket for paper that gets recycled. The shredder is in the foyer too, so it's easy to shred documents that are private. This isn't a bad setup, I guess, but a) I don't come in the front door anymore and b) maybe this is a bad habit or discipline problem rather than a decor or organization problem. It wasn't a whole lot better when I did come in the front door, come to think of it.

I even like the table and basket very much on an aesthetic level. I think I paid about $30 for the table and about $8 for the basket, which is REALLY cheap for that store.

And yes, I pay everything I can online and opt out of paper bills, and I have signed up for the "no credit card offers" list. Even so, there's an enormous amount of paper coming into this house, to my mind.
doodlebug
mouse, welcome! I totally get where you're at. About 11 or 12 years ago, I fled a...shall we just say it was a bad living situation. Anyway, all I could take with me was what fit into my father's car (I gave my book collection priority, LOL!), so I had to start from scratch again with my furniture. My folks bought me a second-hand sofa bed, and the rest, I scrounged. I was very lucky - I managed to get a buttload of furniture for $100 from someone who was moving. It was all "rec room" furniture from their basement, very dated, worn, and mismatched...but it was still furniture and I was so grateful! A dining table and 4 chairs, two upholstered chairs, and a couple of end tables. I had some of that furniture for years, and gradually replaced it, one piece at a time.

amy, don't worry if the 15 minute challenge isn't for you! It was really between me and treehugger to get our worst rooms sorted out, and for anyone else who felt like jumping in! :-) The paper is a problem, isn't it? My bugaboo is shopping receipts! Because I buy things on debit, I tend to hang onto the receipts...I'm also a freak about not letting anything with identifying account numbers go into the trash, so I always think I'm going to shred things, but I never do! I think I need a standing shredder in my hall closet. I do have a filing system in one of the wicker baskets in my wall unit, but I don't stay on top of it, so I usually wind up stuffing paper items in the front. *sigh*

YAY for bklynhermit, tackling her home issues with a list!!

This afternoon, I'm going to use my 15 minutes de-cluttering the deep freeze. YES I have a deep freeze in my bedroom. It's just a little one. (I LOVE having a deep freeze!) It will actually fit in my closet and free up some floor space, but I don't want to move it till I clean it out...I've let all kinds of empty bags, empty packages and old bread and things fill it up.
doodlebug
Oh, I forgot to mention! I think I've found my paint colour! Unfortunately, I can't show it to you, because CIL is a million years behind in web technology, but it's called "apple grove" and it's a soft green...not as grey as the greens on my other walls. I tried it up on the bathroom and bedroom walls, and I think I'm going to use it in both. I really like it! And it works with both the dark green/dark purple I have in the bathroom, and the olive green/lilac of my new bedding.

BUT I'm going to have the colour mixed up by General Paints, because CIL is crap quality...I did two coats of on my wall test, and it's still a little bit patchy-looking. (Remember me doing six coats of that CIL lime green just to get proper coverage? ARGH!)

But that will have to wait till July now!
pepper
you girls an inspiration! if i do 15 minutes of tidying up every day i can keep everything in order and avoid the big weekend cleaning blitz. my little guy goes crazy when i make him stay inside all morning on saturdays and he just drives me crazy wanting my attention. if i can have that time for adventures we'll both be so much happier.
it feels like i have an hour and a half of work every night just doing all the neccessary stuff though, lunches, clothes laid out, carry-all sorted to dash out the door in the a.m. whew. well, there has to be some sort of way to keep it all managable without lowering my standards of cleanliness and organization. doesn't there? gah.

so, the clothes ladder is just a piece of 1X2 cut in half to make the two sides and two 1/2" dowels cut into lengths. i drilled holes in the side pieces and the dowels before screwing them together so the wood wouldn't split. it could have been a prettier piece if i'd sanded and varnished or painted it but i just really needed to get those clothes off the floor and it's almost always entirely covered so it doesn't show anyhow.
the wall hanging behind my couch and the dragon one in the bedroom are both just sarongs pinned up on the walls. that's my solution to not being able to paint. i have colourful stuff so i don't mind much and the light walls make it look a bit more spacious in here too. but when i see lovely places like yours crassy i just get a little paint crazy and wish i could make with the brush. oh well, when i have a place of my own i can do whatever i want to it. this is subsidized housing so i can't really complain.
hey mouse, every piece of furniture i own is a junk store find, even the dresser and vanity in my bedroom are from a junk/antique store in town. i've been collecting it all bit by bit by bit over time and finally have an apartment full of everything a girl could need. eventually i'll replace some of it with nicer quality stuff but since some things took so much work to make them nice i'm kinda attached anyhow.
oh, and the couch took three weeks of hard work cutting, piecing and sewing. but it was worth it, i love that thing!
bklynhermit
and you just have this thing leaning against the wall, right pepper?

i'm wondering how i can make this work in my bedroom... you see, my room is tiny and between the bed, dresser, bookshelves, and gigantor windows, i'm not sure where i have the floor/wall space for something with that kind of footprint. on the other hand, if i suspended it from the ceiling or somehow got it more on the wall and off the floor, it could work. i'm thinking, sadly, that the key here is not to add another gadget to the space but to purge clothing and install hooks. any overflow could be draped over the back of a chair, which is something far more practical to take up that footprint space with in my bedroom.

so i implemented my CD storage solution last night and, while not exactly orderly, they do take up a lot less room. room much better used for the books which are currently shoved into my media cupboard. it's time i finally claimed some livingroom shelf space of my own - i hate the way my books are all ghettoized into my bedroom whilst roomie has 2 entire bookcases.
doodlebug
Weirdest thing found in the deep freeze: empty jewel case for a Simon and Garfunkel cassette.
bklynhermit
oooh, which album?
pepper
bk, i have a teeny bedroom with a lot of furniture in it already (queen bed, two end tables, dresser, vanity, two small book cases) so there isn't very much space. consequently, the floor was totally covered in my clothes every couple of days, i had to wade through piles of the stuff every night just to get to bed! there is a small bit of wall space between the door and the closet and that's where i stood the ladder up. it takes up almost no space at all, it's about 6 inches away from the wall at the base. very, very handy. i have seen a free standing longer shorter version too. a friend from costa rica had them built, he said that down there you have to hang everything up or it will be full of scorpions and stinging ants when you pick it up off the floor or chair to put it on, yikes!!!

doodle, did it have any food in it?
doodlebug
Ha ha! It was "Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme," and "Bookends," one album per side. Part of a "boxed set" I used to have. And yes, there was a green bean inside!

A friend came over this evening. We got the old curtain track down, and put the new bamboo blinds up. While we were smoking herb. Hoo boy. I hope they look okay in the morning. :-)

We also got the freezer wedged into the closet. Gosh, my room seems big with no stuff everywhere!

But I had to take down the boycat's window shelf - permanently, poor little guy - so we could put up the blinds.

pepper, the boycat found a centipede last night...now *I'm* all paranoid about getting my clothes up off the floor!!! *cringes*
bklynhermit
ah, ok. i was imagining something that stood further out from the wall. perhaps i will wander over to home depot tomorrow and grab the supplies. though i need to remind myself that, yes, i do still need to do a massive clothing purge.

what do normal people do with this stuff? i mean, i have been in a lot of people's bedrooms, and i have never seen piles of clothes on the floor to the extent that mine pile up. are most people just better about putting things away?

i got MASSIVE amounts of books out of my bedroom and media cupboard and onto actual shelves in the living room. i feel like i actually live here now, if that makes any sense.

i've decided to keep all my quasi-disposable paperbacks in the cupboard, and all the hardcore women's studies (especially the sensitively titled ones like "Cunt" and "The Ethical Slut") in my bedroom. but just about everything else is now in the living room -- art books, political stuff, favorite novels. it's really nice, actually.
amywoman
People who never seem to have big piles of clothes on the floor probably pick up clothes before company comes over rather than never having said big piles on the floor. :-)

Okay, I went way overboard yesterday. I didn't just go through the pile of mail sitting in the basket. I went through all my old files too, purging things I didn't need and shredding private things. I found paystubs from 1998, in a few extreme cases, but it looks like my last huge purge was in 2002. Seems about right, as that's when we bought the house. It took me pretty much all day and I think I overheated my shredder. :-(

That reminds me. I wonder where my copy of The Ethical Slut is. Hm. Also, on the decor side of things, I really like my table and basket from Cost Plus. I can't believe I got that table for 20 or 30 bucks - must have been major clearance because nothing is ever that cheap there.
pepper
my girls and i have big clothing swaps. bring your bag(s),dump them on the floor, drink wine, eat snacks, catch up with the chicas, all whilst hanging in bra and panties, and leave with a few great new items in exchange for your old junk. all the left overs get donated to the local women's centre and the party is a BLAST! i highly recommend it.
bklynhermit
fun!

i told myself that the huge purge was going to happen today, and that i'd finish up in the bedroom. but now i don't wanna. i'd rather spend the whole afternoon watching six feet under, another disc of which i got from netflix yesterday.
50ftqueenie
if you all don't mind my repeating amy, you all are good! the 15 mins every day, i mean. one of these days, i'm going to get my self-discipline back. then again, i dunno- last week i tacked a card up on the board that i really like. it reads: I'm thinking of becoming a mentor for people who want to be less responsible. underneath that is a picture of a big armchair, with a martini on the armrest. it sorta makes me feel better.

i need to go thru all my stuff, ditch a good bit of it, and pack up the rest. i'm moving near by, so it can be a pretty half-ass pack. still i don't even have much motivation to do that though!instead i find other things to do, like go online and read the bust boards.

paper definitely gets me too. i could be organized, but i'm not. paper just piles up too quickly! i have files for old stuff, but how often do i actually get around to filing? what *do* you all do?



p.s. before anybody comes over, i definitely pick up anything off the floor, and shove it in the closet. remarkable how much can actually fit in there.
bklynhermit
thread hogging, but i feel like if i share my progress it'll feel that much better.

the pile is gone!

though i have to say i wasn't able to get rid of much, and now both my dresser and closet are jammed. the reason i didn't get too deep into the purge was because a lot of my stuff is in the laundry. and anything i give away is going to have to be clean anyway. some of my questionable clean stuff got a stay of execution until i do laundry. but i think the bottom line is that i just don't have enough room for my clothes. i'm going to have to figure something else out, i guess, whether that's purging stuff i legitimately don't want to give up or finding another storage option. :-(
bklynhermit
what do i do with paper? i have a little hutch type thing with a cupboard that i just jam things into willy nilly. in the cupboard is a file box where i put things when i do get around to filing. which generally happens when i move or there's absolutely no more room to just jam things in there. or when i need to find something important i will generally look and sort/file at the same time.

one thing that went on the list of things i need to invest in is a shredder. i feel like paper will be much less cumbersome if i shred as i go -- i keep a lot of crap that isn't even important just because i don't feel like properly disposing of it.
amywoman
I love my shredder.

This thread is making me want to work more on the foyer, which is still unfinished. The trim on everything except the front door (which, by the way, I have painted a vibrant RED) is still missing after we replaced trim in the living room. I should finish that up. Maybe it will motivate me to file better.
taligator
Here's how I deal with paper and I might add I'm not an expert but here's what I do ..

First, don't bring paper into the house that doesn't need to go there. If you live in an apartment most apartments have a trash bin by the the mail boxes. If you live in a home but a trash bin by the front door or mail box. Open everything immediately and throw away everything but the bill and corresponding return envelope (if you need it). Throw out any advertisements unless you clip coupons and even so, weed out what you don't need.

That should take care of a lot of your paper right there because once it's in the house it multiplies with light ...

Next I have a filing crate which I made folders for the common items. I really pile everything up for awhile in one or two locations and then I spend 20 minutes or so filing every couple of months. I do have a shredder that I use only for things that I don't need to keep and don't want anyone else to see.

It doesn't eliminate all paper but these two steps do help. I also have a file rack on top of my desk for the important things I need to keep close at hand but most everything is filed beside the desk in the filing cabinet.

I should be ashamed to admit I have at least 13 years worth of papers (all neatly filed!) under my bed but I will also say I did need to dig in there a couple months ago for something from 1994 and I had it (go me!) but I will soon get rid of most things. ;)
pepper
oh, nice. throw the paper out. couldja maybe just maybe recycle a little bit? please? dang.

the way i reduce paper is by having e-bills for every and anything that offers them. no bills, no paper, no envelopes. ta da! i also read the paper at work instead of buying it myself. AND i cut up almost every piece of paper i don't need anymore to use as note paper. handy dandy that.
amywoman
Thanks, all. I do all those things, sadly, or at least I plan to. I have a setup right by the front door with in-basket, recyling bin, and shredder. The stuff I'm keeping is supposed to go in the basket, the stuff I'm tossing but not shredding is supposed to go in the recycling bin, and the private stuff with account numbers and SSNs goes in the shredder. When that's full the contents get recycled.

I'm *supposed* to go through the mail and go through this keep, recycle or shred process with each piece of mail, but I don't. And I'm supposed to go through my keep pile and deal with that once a week or so, but I don't do that with regularity either. I put everything right there too so that I don't have to make treks across the house except to file my keep stuff once in a while.

So I think this is a discipline problem, one that requires me to do this every day until I have developed the habit. :-(
doodlebug
Paper!! ARGH!! You know what I hate is when people try to give me paper copies of documents they can send electronically...or that they've ALREADY sent electronically! STOP IT! My board chair is the worst for this. She's always got some report or article printed off for me. *sigh*

The one thing I have managed to keep on top of is magazines. I don't subscribe to anything anymore, except Bust and Bitch. I take them to the women's centre when I'm done. At home, I only allow myself to keep one basket of magazines. When it's full, it's time to purge. Mainly I keep decorating magazines...as if that is a surprise to anyone, LOL! Anyway, I used to have stacks and stacks of magazines, so this has worked for me.

OK! Report time! I know I jumped ahead, but it was the weekend, and I was feeling a little hyper, I guess, so I got a lot done.

Stuff done in the bedroom:
- three-drawer nightstand completely de-cluttered
- closet three-quarters de-cluttered
- floor completely de-cluttered
- jewelry organized on a tie rack in the closet
- new bedding washed and bed made up (and I used a FlyLady trick - stored the 2nd set of sheets between the mattresses....FlyLady swears you only need two sets of sheets per bed)
- cleaned out the deep freeze and fit it into the closet
- took down all the uselessly-placed wall shelves
- started painting some of those shelves, which will go elsewhere in the room
- painted two small walls charcoal grey (I have a small doorway alcove, where the hooks and those shelves are going)
- took down the old drapes and hardware, and hung new bamboo blinds
- exchanged the non-working projection clock for a working one, and also found a $7 clamp lamp for the closet

Still to do:
- touch up a couple of spots on the painted walls
- catch up on the laundry, which is in two big Rubbermaid bins (ETA: just to clarify, one bin contains my unwashed guest bedding and guest towels...I don't have THAT many dirty clothes!)
- hang the macrame and wrap it in mini lights
- finish painting/polyurethane-ing the shelves and then hang them
- hang the hooks on the walls and in the closet
- make and hang the beach mat "headboard"
- de-clutter the top shelf in the closet (waiting for the hooks, so I can hang up the bags)
- paint the rest of the room (still four walls to be painted, *sigh*)
- go through some boxes that were on the shelves I took down (1 box is FULL of PAPER CLUTTER!!)

The blinds ARE a teeny bit crooked, but it's hard to tell, and I'll wait till I paint to fix it.

I painted the walls just because I had the paint already, and I didn't want to have to take down all the hooks and shelves when I paint the rest of the bedroom, so this seemed the easiest solution. They are just little walls, maybe 4 feet across each.

I also recycled the lime green pillows that used to be in my living room - they look GREAT against my olive green/lilac bedding!

In that spirit, the shelves are each going to be black with a single lime green stripe on the side.

Hurrah!

I'm exhausted though. Kind of achey, but in a good way. I also found time this weekend to make dinner for my friend, grocery shop, and colour my hair!
pepper
sugar pants, you got a ton done! how many 15 minuteses was that anyhow? yowza!

i dumped out my jewellery box today looking for stuff appropriate for a pirate bday party in the park (omg FUN!) so tonight was the perfect opportunity to go through the stash and sort it all out. i'm thinking about making a nice curly-q wire thingy to go over the top of the round mirror of my vanity to hang my necklaces on. if i can see them i'm more likely to wear them.
oh, and i spent at least 15 minutes making up a pirate treasure chest and pirate card for the birthday boy too. but that was way more fun than laundry, does it still count?
and earlier i drafted a basic skirt fabric that i wanted to make a few versions of.
now i think i'm going to do the dishes before i crash. and maybe fold little's laundry too. his clothes are small, how much time can it take?
tommorow i would like to get one last load of laundry done, do some shopping, make a big salad, cut the fabric for those skirts, and paint a big cork board that i found at a yard sale for a couple of bucks. i'm thinking of that martha steward criss crossy ribbon thing on the board, i think crassy has one in one of her pics, it reminded me to get on it. it's for above the desk mostly for inspirational pictures and stuff. i don't need another place to put papers, that filing cabinet i just bought is Great!
bklynhermit
wow! go doodlebug!

in the same vein, i also tackled the bedroom today. here's what i got done:

-took care of the clothes pile
-changed sheets and kinda sorta made my bed
-general de-cluttering
-put away all books, though a more permanent book solution is soon to come
-mini clothing purge; i went through my dresser and closet and got rid of anything that no longer fits or is completely out of style. after i do laundry again we will do the 'no i do not need 25 ironic thrift store t-shirts' purge, which will be much more painful.

and, the piece de resistance:

i completely rearranged the furniture! it looks like a completely different room. it is WORLDS bigger. i used to have this weird furniture placement issue where all my furniture was sort of lined up on opposite sides of my long narrow room so that it looked like it was about to have a rumble or something. no more sharks-and-jets furniture placement! (oh, dude, when i get my own HGTV show, 'sharks-and-jets furniture placement' is so going to be my catchphrase!) i also now officially have room for the clothes ladder!

the only thing i have left to do in the bedroom (outside of hanging hooks and art and possibly painting) is to finally get rid of this file cabinet which used to be my major storage furniture but which i no longer use and have been putting off disposing of for several months now.
pepper
yeah bk!

i just came back to say that sugar, and especially sugar pants are not cute names i am calling you. they are my extra special swear words for awesome events. hee, it's the mommy in me. sugar, fudge, sugar pop, fudge sickle, barnacles! my swears are funny!
mouse
ok, i have a conundrum that you ladies may be able to help me solve:

my shower has a window in it. it is not frosted, or in any other way obscure, and it is conveniently positioned exactly where i want my neighbors to NOT be looking. right now for a makeshift covering i have a scarf tacked up there, but it gets wet and i'm worried will mildew soon. the only thing that keeps it from blowing around is that it gets wet and heavy and sticks to the tiles. i could put a curtain up, or fashion a curtain out of shower curtain material, but the shower curtain blows around quite a bit as it is due to the ventilation (even when the window is closed) and i doubt a tinier curtain would stay put at all.

my only other thought is to get some sort of plastic covering for the window that would tint it or frost it....do they sell these things? and if so where can i get them? or does anyone else have a suggestion? the window is quite small, about two feet tallish.

thanks!
amywoman
Wow, doodle, you were highly efficient this weekend! I'm very impressed.

Also, I love "sharks-and-jets furniture placement." Hee.

Mouse, is the window yours yours or do you rent? There is glass paint, and you can get the kind that makes a smoked effect. Or you can get decorative peel and stick patterns to put on your windows. I think any home improvement store would have those. Of course there is no privacy when the window is open, but at least with those two solutions you wouldn't have to worry about a curtain blowing around.
bklynhermit
you can get peel and stick plastic fairly easily at either hardware stores or plastic randomness supply houses (not sure where you are, but there are a few of these on Canal Street in NYC) -- with this you could either cover each pane completely, or cut out shapes or designs that would obscure the view.

you could also get a sheet of harder plastic cut to fit the space and just fit it in there against the window. like an opaque plexi or that frosted plastic they make the door out of on that one ikea wardrobe (sorry, blanking on the name, but you know, that one really iconic one).

you could cover the glass with moisture-proof tape, like duct or electrical. the stuck-on adhesive should come off with goo gone when you move.

i've seen on Apartment Therapy where people have set narrow glass shelves into their bathroom windows. then they put their toiletries on the shelves. if you do the placement right (lots of shelves spaced close together rather than a couple of them far apart) this should both obscure the view and provide handy storage. would only work if you have a good-sized inset sill, though.
doodlebug
mouse, I used to live in a house that had a window on the front door. The previous tenant had used sticky-back translucent (textured, frosted-look) Con-Tact Paper to cover it. I'm pretty sure if you go to a place that sells Con-Tact Paper, you should be able to find it (i.e.: Home Depot). If they don't have any in stock, ask them to order it.

A piece of corrugated plastic would work, also, and I've definitely seen that for sale at Home Depot. You just cut it to fit, and it's translucent enough that you shouldn't really lose any light.

If you try an option that's not securely fitted to the window (i.e.: sticks right to the window), you should plan on taking it down once or twice a week and cleaning/drying behind it, to make sure you don't get mold and mildew...

YAY bklynhermit for getting shit done! I too like the "sharks-and-jets" line. If I get an HGTV show before you do, I'm so totally stealing it.

YAY for pepper getting the jewelry sorted out! I recently did that job too, so I know it's a finicky one. Good work! Sugar pants.

amy, thanks for saying I was highly efficient. My body (especially my arms and shoulders) is paying for it today, ugh! And Monday is laundry night...eleventy bazillion trips up and down the stairs with heavy baskets...

It feels SOOOOOO much more peaceful in my bedroom already! I can't believe the difference! I'm so glad I sucked it up and took charge of that room once and for all. Now I actually WANT to be in my bedroom!! And it feels surprisingly spacious, for a 10X10' room with a queen bed in it. I can't wait to get the rest of the walls painted.

I definitely need some plants in there now. I'm trying to decide if I'm going to scoop some from the living room, or buy new ones...
amywoman
Question!

So I took doodle's advice and got two palm fans. They are not very large, but I'm wondering how to hang these. I think I want them hanging with palms up rather than down. It would be easy to use nails to hang them down, but if I want to hang them with the palms up and the stems down, what's a good way to do it that's secure and is not particularly damaging to the wall?
amilita
So, I started painting today! I'm using Killz to cover the water stains, but even after 2 coats, it's coming through a bit...so, I think I'll follow the directions and do a coat of primer then another of the Killz and I hope that'll do it.

I had to chip off the flaking paint in a few places, but that ended up being easy. I was afraid the walls themselves may have some damage, and that the plaster may chip etc. but it didn't. Yay.

I'm getting excited about getting the color up and all the art hung! I almost forgot, but took some before pics of the staining.

And, on an old topic, I got a shredder when I was cleaning out my files and it makes me so happy. I can't believe all the things that have your SS # on them! Dang! And I realized I have my income taxes since '93! Pretty good for a girl who moves a lot.
amywoman
Hm, isn't the Killz primer?

And ditto the SSN thing. I found it on old insurance stuff and if I hadn't been careful, I might have just pitched it.

ETA: did you say what color you were painting? If you didn't, what color?
amilita
yeah, that's what I thought, too, but when I read the instructions, it doesn't seem like it...they say something like, "if the stain is still showing, paint another coat of primer before repainting with Killz" or something. I'm gonna read that again, though.

Oooh, I am painting the walls blue-grey and the ceiling teal blue. And there is a top molding that I'm not sure what to do with. I am considering copper...maybe leaf or maybe paint. Any other ideas? Not black or brown or white, though. The rooms have lots of browns, blues, oranges and greens. Actually, black may be a possibility, but I'd prefer something else.

I wish I had an idea about your palm fans, amy!
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