Friday, October 12, 2007

A small space can be a great place

I was watching a new local Home Show on TPT, I can’t remember what it was called now, but it was about a couple from the Twin Cities who wanted to build an environmentally friendly home. They spent a lot of time talking to architects and experts on sustainability, and over and over again, advice from experts emphasized that one of the best ways to build an energy-efficient, earth-friendly home is to build a smaller home. The couple decided to build a large home anyways, using sustainable building materials, but I think that is a great point. The smaller a space is the less energy it will need. My husband and I live in a modest size townhouse: 1000 sq ft. Loft-style, vaulted ceiling, two bedrooms, one bathroom, laundry room, two-car garage, and a four-season porch. Sometimes I long for another bathroom, another bedroom that I can turn into an office, a bigger kitchen, an actual dining room, and a walk-in closet. Sometimes I love it, because it means only one bathroom to clean, and I am less tempted to buy things because I do not have the space for it. My best secrets (and not so secret) for keeping everything under control are floor to ceiling bookcases, lots of shelving, and lots and lots of containers and baskets to hold everything.

Dwell magazine did a spread in their May issue about a California couple and their 426 sq ft San Diego downtown loft. They created unique storage solutions and maximized as much space as possible.

This is their kitchen - smaller appliances, shelves galore - and unique storage for extra chairs.

Here is a close-up of all their kitchen goodies neatly organized and stacked on shelves maximizing as much space as possible.

I love this idea - a floor to ceiling shelving unit which they use as storage & a closet!Can you imagine???

Here are some great pics & organizational tips from

Hang pots and pans in a small kitchen.

This is a garage that has been turned into a home office! Doesn't it look great?

Use shorter walls as a divider to create different rooms.

Not a fan of the pinkness here, but having a desk in a closet is a great space saver. When not using it, you can close the door and keep it out of sight.

A super-organized medicine cabinet. Use shelving to maximize the space in this small area, and containers to keep things organized.

Bookshelves can be a lifesaver. I love how no space is wasted. 

I like for my storage containers to be attractive and functional. I love to shop for all things organization from Ikeaand the Container Store. Read my post about my shoe organization project using shoe organizers from Ikea. Here are some of my favorite storage containers:

Baroque fabric boxes from the Container Store 

Canvas boxes from the Container Store 

Portofino storage boxes from the Container Store 

Hamper from Pier1

Metal tins from the Container Store

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