Friday, January 14, 2022

Welcome To My Storage Room / Office / Craft & Christmas Room

Today I thought I would give you a quick tour of my recently re-purposed Storage Room / Office / Craft & Christmas Room, so as you can tell, there is a LOT going on in this space.

To begin with up until the first week of January, this room was just totes and cardboard boxes stacked all along the walls.  Organized, yes, but not the least bit pretty or really even functional.  I've wanted a room for my craft things for awhile now, and I also didn't really like my office being in my bedroom. It just wasn't very relaxing. So I decided before Christmas that after the first of the year I would tackle this room and see if I could come up with a plan to allow for the storage and unsightly cardboard boxes to have a place and still be functional. Because it serves so many purposes, it is a bit, well, busy, but I don't mind that so much in this room.  My tastes tend to run a little on the busy side, anyway, I guess you could say. Some people might call it clutter, but I'm pretty organized with my clutter and intentional about placement, etc.

So, let's begin. This first picture is to the right of the door as you walk in. The small black dresser was in my closet and taking up a lot of space that I needed. Other than my sheets and towels, which I easily found another place for, it was already housing some craft items, specifically my soap and candle making supplies and paper crafts and water color supplies. Moving the towels and sheets out made room for my candle collection (I tend to buy them cheap on sale after Christmas), and I am using the top drawer for tea things. I found our kettle while I was cleaning and organizing and set it up on top, and that coffee cup holder I got at Target fo $3.00.  The two little wooden shutters used to fit together, and they may again some day, but one of the shutters had a piece break off that I need to see if I can repair, so I unscrewed them and mounted the other two on the wall on each side. I love having a designated place to make tea without even having to leave the room if I don't want to. Some days my office duties take me awhile, and I'm in here for some time, and a cup of tea always sweetens the task of tasks like paying bills. 
Also in this space is, obviously, the Christmas tree, which yes, I plan to keep up, but not lit, well, not all the time, anyway. I left it up because I want to do a major overhaul with my ornaments this year, and I've wanted to for several years. One of the things that was holding me back was that I like to see how they look on the tree before I commit to making multiples, and since it was always in the box, that meant I couldn't even consider starting until November, which in my mind, is just too late. Our tree is fairly small, which I like, so it fit easily in this space and the only thing in that closet behind it are boxes that I don't need to access, so that's where it ended up. The black shelf next to it was in this room, but full of books, which are now in boxes waiting for a new shelf which will go in my bedroom and is less needed at the moment.  So this shelf now holds my yarn and crochet/knitting needles, some of my cross stitch supplies, some paper craft supplies and water color supplies on the bottom shelf, and my essential oil collection on the top shelf. You'll also notice our stocking hanging from the corners, and that is because I also want to personalize them and if they're packed away, out of sight. . . . out of mind, until it's really too late to do anything with them.

That leads us to this next picture which is of both of the black shelves and the tv in the middle. Right now, as you can easily see, I'm using what I have, including two totes to hold the tv. My goal is to get one of those shelves with cubbies and baskets, and put that in the middle, one so that it will look better, and two so that it will function better, but for now, I'm more interested in not spending $ and using what I have. The TV just slipped perfectly down into the recess on the top of the tote, so that's where it stayed. It's not even functional right now, it needs either a DVD player to watch movies, or a Fire Stick, and again, I don't want to invest in either right now. I'm also not sure I want to keep this TV, so there's that, but it was being stored in this room until we decide, so it had to have a home. The other black shelf holds all my office supplies and files, which is why the top half is covered with a curtain, to hide the clutter. But the most important thing about these two black shelves is that they, along with the curtain I used a shower curtain rod to hold in place between them, is hiding the rest of the totes and cardboard boxes that are not in the closet, and that was my primary goal. 

Kate was already in this apartment with two room mates when I started having health problems in December of 2020 and had to come out of the van and move back in. Since then both of her room mates have moved out, leaving us with a three bedroom apartment. To compensate for the additional cost, we cancelled our storage unit and moved all of that into this room, so that is how it became a storage room in the first place, and as I said, until a few weeks ago that is exactly what it looked like, a storage facility!  There are even two huge tires that need to be sold behind those shelves! One of the things I also love about this set up, is that to access anything we do want to sell, I just pull out the two totes, take down the curtain, and it's all right there. Easy-peasy!

And now to the other side of the room.  The shelf you see there in the corner is built in, there's actually another one on the other side, filled with storage and hidden by the black book cases. These apartments were built I think in the 50's or 60's and they have a lot of little quirky things like this in them.  I don't really like them, but I will say that it did provide a nice place to keep out some of my favorite Christmas and wintry decorations which I enjoy seeing year round. There are two shelves on the bottom that you can't see that house my Bella Grace magazine collection, which was originally on one of the black shelves. And then the stack of black totes holds additional cross stitch supplies, seasonal baking supplies, like cookie cutters and seasonal muffin liners, etc. One of the totes holds general sewing supplies, the big tote on the bottom holds all of my fabric and the small tote on the top holds my acrylic paints. The little green tray and the red mail box have since found another home. As for the chair, it's just an old chair I picked up on the side of the road. It's broken and taped together on the bottom, so you can't sit on it, but I love it and use it keep my baskets, or to hold other light-weight items. And as for the items on the wall, I just hung up a few things I wasn't using elsewhere in the house, so not a lot of thought has gone into it yet. I do have some ideas for some decorative things I'd like to make to hang there, but that's low on the priority list. My guess is that we'll be moving again come July. Kate is ready to have her own place, and Bill will be coming home about that time, so I don't want to spend a lot of time trying to decorate this space in the mean time. But if I do make anything for it, it won't be hard to repurpose it wherever we end up, since my entire house is decorated with the same colors, red, green and black. :)

And finally, that leads us to my desk, which I am still trying to figure out.  Right now it's just two saw horses with a very heavy piece of wood on top, which worked out better than I imagined. But the height is weird. It's too tall for a regular chair and that chair is also not comfortable, but too short for a stool, I tried that. So for now I just lay my planner out here every day and stand, for the most part, except on the days I pay bills and then, to be honest, this week I brought in a blanket and sat on the floor. It was easier to do that than to cart all the files, etc. into another room.  But most days, like I said, I just open up my planner and since this room is pretty central to the rest of the house, it's easy to pop in and check the next thing off the list of my daily tasks. If I do decide that I want to work in another room, the bulk of the things I need are in that rolling cart, which is now out of my bedroom and has a spot, so that's win. The tablecloth on the top of the desk I got after Christmas at Walmart for $2.50, I actually bought two, and I just love them. Pretty, but functional.  And as for that bulletin board, that's a fun story. I had just taken a video the day before to show my husband what I had done with this room, and I mentioned in that video that this big space above the desk really needed a bulletin board and that I was going to be on the look out at the thrift store for one. The very-next-day, I was walking to the dumpster with our trash, which I saw an elderly gentlemen walking to the dumpster as well, and he had this bulletin board under one arm. He totes his trash bags on a little wagon that he pulls, and he asked me if I wanted to throw mine on and he would take it the rest of the way for me, and that was when I realized that he was going to throw the bulletin board away! I asked him if he was, just to be sure, and he said yes. He had bought it at a thrift store himself, and decided it was too big, so I asked him if I could buy it from him, and he wouldn't hear of it. Said it was bulky to carry and would save him having to lug it all the way, so he insisted that I take it, and let him take my trash, as well! Such a blessing, and of course, it was the PERFECT size for this space. It is big, and I don't think I'll ever be able to fill it all up, but that's ok. It made a very large white wall look a little more balanced, and that was the goal. Or course, after I hung it up I realized that I wanted to paint the trim black, but rather than take it down, I think I'll tape around it and paint in right on the wall, or . . . I might just live with it!

Other than that there is only one other space in front of the window where I have a small table and two little plastic storage bins on each side, but because they sit directly in front of the window, I couldn't get a good picture of them. They hold a bunch of this and that, as well as the few plants that I am able to have in this apartment. We don't have a balcony, and not many windows that get a lot sun, but the small window in this room, does, so that's where I keep my Norfolk pine which I've had for two years now and is still going strong, and then in the spring I might plant some mint in a few little pots, it should do well in that sunny window.

And that's it. I would like a rug for this room, but once again, not knowing where we will be come summer, I'm not willing to fork out a lot of money for it. I'm hoping to find a good used one at a thrift store, or even at the dumpster, which is where I was lucky enough to find a brand new one that someone had thrown out that is currently in the family room. In many ways I'm just trusting God for what I would like to have in this room, He knows the future and I do not. I may not even have a room that I can dedicate to such when we move, if we move, who knows, time will tell. For now I'm enjoying what I have and holding it all very loosely.

So if you've stuck with me this far, I applaud you. I'm sure for some of you this was quite boring, but I always like seeing the ways that other people re-purpose and use what they have to make cozy spaces in their homes, so that was my objective for this post.

And now friends, I am off. They are calling for a significant amount of snow here this weekend, which I'm looking forward to, but I do hope we don't lose power.  So, barring that, I'll be back again next week! Have a warm and cozy, weekend, my friends!


Anonymous said...

You did a great job! So practical and lovely as well!

We are due for a big snow over the weekend here, as well. And our daughter and SIL (displaced from China and living up here) are due with their first baby also this weekend. Yikes!


Kimberly Lottman said...

I'm sorry to just now be responding. I'm having some problems with delays in comments showing up on my posts, or maybe I'm just getting old, LOL! Anyway, thank you for your encouragement and congratulations on the impending arrival of your grandchild! Be sure to let me know when the exciting event happens! I hope it wasn't during the snow and ice. We still haven't dug out from under it here!