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i heart my Small/Cool 2011 home

I’ve really enjoyed the inspiration [and excuse] to spend time on my home, making it a place I love to be — ever since I first read the Apartment Therapy book five years ago. The first year of this blog, in 2007, things were a little AT heavy around here, as I completed my first “home cure” and joined the AT community.

Although I’ve been pretty quiet in the Apartment Therapy community the last year or two, I entered my place in the Small Cool 2011 contest last weekend. The contest has been running all month, and voting ends this week, so I’m a little late to the game, but it’s still really fun to see my place listed. :)

At 600 square feet, my place falls into the “Little” category, which is fairly massive compared to “Teeny-tiny” and “Tiny”. Makes me want to downsize!

Do you Apartment Therapy too?

Apartment Therapy Week 5 – The Office

In search of desk and a job.Luckily, I don’t have an office. I simply have a stack of 2 boxes sitting in the corner by my table. Anyway, I’ll be doing week 5 of the cure remotely… from Mexico. :) My first time out of the US since the grand adventure.

Week 5 To Do List:

  • Take care of repairs – hey remember when I crossed ‘fixing the wall’ off my list? I totally lied.
  • Clean office area and related closets
  • Vacuum, dust
  • Declutter files – I did this last week so I could put stuff in my new Liberty of London file box
  • Tackle the cord octopus – maybe next week
  • Try a one-day media fast – this is definitely doable remotely…
  • Buy fresh flowers – nope
  • Choose at least one soft or hard thing to add or subtract from apartment – meh
  • Cook three meals at home this week – nope
  • Eat at home Sunday through Thursday – nope
  • Get to bed early and read before sleep – does it count if I spend the entire day reading?

If I wasn’t already half-assing the cure, now I’m thinking about how awesome it will be to move in to my new place. :) Adios!

Apartment Therapy Week 4 – Retail Therapy

daisyWhat was that? Retail therapy? Yes, please!  So today is the start of week four of the spring cure, and we’re almost half way! The kitchen and entryway are done, and now it’s on to the living room… so yeah, another week with not much to do. Loving the cure this time around, maybe I should have picked the “one room” option.

Week 4 To Do List:

  • Clean up living room and related closets – closets? I wish!
  • Declutter books and all media – did in 2007, and have since only added a lovely stack of travel guides. :)
  • Cancel 75% of the catalogs you receive – I think the only catalogs I get are J.Crew and the occasional Crate & Barrel…
  • Empty Outbox this week
  • Confirm what you need to increase or decrease color in each room
  • Identify what you need to increase or decrease softness in each room – bunnies?
  • Cook three meals at home this week – does breakfast count?
  • Send out your invitations

What I need to + / – on the color and softness scales in each room…

Area: color – to add (subtract)
Hallway/Entry:  warm – nope
Kitchen: warm – hang orange pan on wall?
Dining room: warm – make space for my “office” stuff, possibly get a desk
Living room: warm/cool – already perfect!
Bathroom: cool/warm – change the framed artwork
Bedroom: cool – remove red pillows

Week 4 is even easier than week 3. Oh and I bought a super bright Gerbera daisy this weekend. I think it might need a Liberty of London planter to go in… hmmm….

A Lack Of Color

mediterranean-blue… because Ben Gibbard (Death Cab for Cutie) was totally thinking about his apartment decor when he wrote A Lack of Color. Ahahaa, anyway… I’m always a little confused about cool vs warm colors and how they mix, so I found this week’s Apartment Therapy reading rather interesting — how certain rooms lend themselves to specific color and movement:

Cool colors (blues, greens, grays) are contracting and calming; warm colors (reds, yellows, oranges) are expansive and stimulating. Just as breathing is made up of contractions (the in breath) and expansion (the out breath), you want to feel this movement as you walk through your apartment. This is done by alternating warm and cool colors.

According to AT, here are the rooms that lend themselves to warm/cool…

Area:  movement – color { my apartment!}
Hallway/Entry:  contraction – cool {warm!}
Kitchen: expansion – warm {warm}
Dining room: expansion – warm {warm}
Living room: expansion – warm {cool and warm?}
Office: contraction – cool {what is this “office”}
Bathroom: contraction – cool {cool and warm?}
Bedroom: contraction – cool {cool}

So in applying the 80/20 rule, I think my living room is a good example: 80% base colors – brown couch, white rug, espresso accents, with 20% blues and brighter colors mixed in. My bedroom however, is 20% bright Mediterranean blue (only one wall), but I also have a bright painting and colorful planters, so I think it could use some direction. But I guess that’s for next week.

Week 3 To Do List Recap:

  • Vacuum/dust
  • Clean entryway and closet – the closet is my Outbox at the moment
  • Declutter entrance
  • Move all old mail, catalogs, magazines to the Outbox
  • Look into what you would need to create a Landing Strip –  already done
  • Cancel any unused subscriptions
  • Identify cool rooms and warm rooms
  • Apply the 80/20 color rule
  • Cook two meals at home this week
  • Design an invitation for your housewarming

on to week 4!

Apartment Therapy Week 3 – The Landing Strip

love-it-or-leave-itWeek 3 is all about the hallway/entryway… Translation: I don’t have too much to do this week! :) Last time I did the cure, I found the landing strip week to be fairly quick, and my apartment hasn’t changed too much in the last few years. The only changes being that I sold my hat/coat racks when I went traveling and my new apartment has a gold-ish yellow entryway instead of silver-ish grey.

I got a new Love It or Leave It coat rack from Urban Outfitters, which I… love, and framed the Going To See My Baby bicycle print that I bought at Flatstock Seattle during Bumbershoot this year (by Strawberry Luna).

Week 3 To Do List:

  • Vacuum/dust
  • Clean entryway and closet
  • Declutter entrance
  • Move all old mail, catalogs, magazines to the Outbox
  • Look into what you would need to create a Landing Strip –  I still have my 2 IKEA boxes
  • Cancel any unused subscriptions
  • Identify cool rooms and warm rooms
  • Apply the 80/20 color rule
  • Cook two meals at home this week
  • Design an invitation for your housewarming

I do have a bit of decluttering to do though…

Olivia Raymer
Things I ♥: travel, food (I'm a pescatarian), the Pacific Northwest, bikes (I ride an orange mixte), beer (IPAs), summer, coffee, lists, and kitties. Travel enthusiast, former product manager, dabbler, and currently helping small businesses with digital strategy at Early Bird Strategy.

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