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    I fortuitously was in Los Angeles when René Holguin, owner of LA cult clothing and leather goods shop RTH, opened his second outpost, RTH Shop 2. While the first store is very much a modern trading post inspired by the “traveling American,” the second represents René's creative mind unleashed. As he explains, “Every artist has their board or wall of ideas, and the whole concept for RTH Shop 2 was for it to be an inspiration wall that comes to life." To that end René, a clothing designer and master of merchandising, has brought together a mix of photography, art objects, ceramics, and drawings with his own clothing in the backdrop. He explains, “I didn’t want our product to take over, it's the artists I want to be featured." The result is a very personal and passionate combination that makes the store feel like more than the sum of its parts.

    If you're looking to get your hands on some of RTH's signature drop-crotch trousers and other pieces from the line, you'll need to visit the store in person—the shops are just a few doors away from each other on La Cienega. An online store is in the works but not open yet—stay tuned at RTH. In the meantime, check out the RTH video shot at Arcosanti in Arizona by Jay Carroll for the first RTH lookbook.

    Photography by Michael A. Muller for Remodelista.

    RTH Store in LA, Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: A look at RTH Shop 2's richly layered mix of drawings, tapestries, beads, and other of René's finds. The pile of rugs stacked beneath the table are vintage Persian, Turkish, and Afghan designs. The round chair of saddle leather is by Garza Marfa. 

    RTH Store 2 in LA, Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: Pillows and throws made from vintage textiles on a chair by Environment. RTH ponchos hang in the background.  

    RTH Store 2 in LA, Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: A South American palo santo stick burns in the store and has become Shop 2's signature scent (Shop 1 smells like American cedar). The one-off ceramic pieces are by sculptor Mitsuko Ikeno, who splits her time between LA and Alaska. 

    René Holguin of RTH, Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: René Holguin in an RTH Four-Pocket Shirt stands in front of a large drawing that London artist Tom "Birdman" Webb made for the RTH opening. René discovered Webb via Instagram and explains, "I loved his work and spirit, so we asked him to come to LA and create some pieces. The experience was wonderful for all of us. He's now part of the family."

    René Holguin of RTH, Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: Around René's neck are pieces he has worn forever. As he tells us, "These are my stories. The leather feather I made over ten years ago; I've had to mend it many times. All the other items are gifts I've received or things I've found in my travels. Every one of them has a story and is a reminder of a person or a place. The most special one is my dog's tag. After she died I took her tag and put it on my necklace. Every once in a while, it jingles just right and I have to look around because I think she's nearby. Maybe she is. I like to think she stops by to check in on me."

    RTH shop 2 in LA, Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: The cedar stools were custom-made for RTH and are available to order. The photography throughout the store is by René's good friend Jay Carroll of One Trip Pass and is from his Residents series shot in Arcosanti with RTH.

    RTH Store in LA, Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: The cedar screens with leather hinges, like the stools, were locally made for the store. René specifically left the wood raw to let it take on its own patina and weather in the same way that leather and blue jeans wear with age. 

    RTH Store in LA, Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: Rows of string lights on the ceiling feature different sized bulbs and wattages. The large ceramic pots are by Mitsuko Ikeno and were inspired by a small sake glass that René asked her to make bigger. Ikeno created one huge piece that was so well received, she made more. Each is its own organic design with a glaze that she says depends more on her mood than any formula, and takes on a life of its own. 

    RTH Store in LA, Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: A group of wood-carved peace signs peeks out among the display cases of jewelry. René is always on the lookout for small collections at estate sales and in his travels. 

    RTH Store in LA, Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: The striped blanket-rug on the Garza Marfa chair looks Native American but is actually Persian.  

    RTH Shop 2 in LA, Tom Webb drawing Photograph by Michael A. Muller | Remodelista

    Above: A second large-format drawing that Tom Webb created for the store.

    For more, see our original Shopper's Diary on RTH. Also have a look at our posts on Garza Marfa and Environment Furniture's Slow Design. And for more of Jay Carroll's work, see the piece he shot for us on June Taylor, Queen of Preserves.

    RTH Shop 2 is located at 529 N. La Cienega Boulevard, a few doors away from the original RTH at 537 N. La Cienega Boulevard.

    More Stories from Remodelista


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    Here's what's on our radar this week.

    Dot Modular Shelving via Design Milk | Remodelista

    Henry Wilson Leather Blotter | Remodelista

    Berg'n Beer Hall Crown Heights | Remodelista

    • Christine checks out the new Annabelle Selldorf–designed Berg'n Beer Hall in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, opening August 27. Photograph by Bess Adler for Eater.

    Twin XL bedding for dorms | Remodelista

    Jenna Lyons New York Office | Remodelista

    For more from this week on Remodelista, see Summer Cottage. And don't forget to check out Gardenista's week of Summer Cottages too. 

    More Stories from Remodelista


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    We're kicking back for one more week and celebrating warm-weather living, with plenty of remodeling and DIY ideas included. After all, some of the most appealing elements of summer—from beach finds to coastal blues—are worth incorporating into rooms year-round.

    Summer Wrap-Up Remodelista Issue Image, Photograph by Matthew Williams

    Above: Designer Corinne Gilbert lines up simple bouquets on a sideboard made from a vintage wallpaper table. Photograph by Matthew Williams from Remodelista: A Manual for the Considered Home.

    Monday

    Kajsa Cramer porcelain bowls |  Remodelista

    Above: Later today, watch for Justine's Tabletop & Dinnerware discovery: subtly colored bowls made by a Swedish ceramic artist with a background as an interior designer.

    Tuesday

    Steal This Look Ikea guest kitchen | Remodelista

    Above: In our weekly Tuesday Steal This Look, Michelle details how to re-create this postage-stamp-size Ikea kitchen. (You might want to copy the whole setup: It's a garage transformed into a guest cottage, aka a "grottage.")

    Coastline-inspired blue interior paints | Remodelista

    Above: Also on Tuesday, in Palette & Paints, Meredith rounds up our favorite coastal blues. 

    Wednesday

    DIY: Seaweed Prints | Remodelista

    Above: "Any project that starts with 'Step 1: Head to the Beach' is A-OK with me," Justine writes. In Wednesday's DIY: Pressed Seaweed Prints, she shows us how to distill a bit of summer. 

    Thursday

    Modular Danish summer house by Lykke and Nielsen | Remodelista

    Above: Presenting the nearly instant vacation house—a modular design by a Danish architecture firm, (Note the way the exterior door opens to create a windbreak.) Take a tour in Thursday's Architecture & Interiors post.

    Friday

    Shasta camper converted into backyard guest retreat in Nashville| Remodelista

    Above: Friday's Rental House is a 1962 Shasta camper converted into a backyard guest room—it's in Nashville and listed on Airbnb.

    We're not the only ones holding on to summer—see what's sprouting on Gardenista this week.

    More Stories from Remodelista


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    A2BC Architects merged ancient and modern in their overhaul of a crumbling farmhouse on the terraced hillside of Cinque Terre, in Liguria, Italy. They shored up the existing structure, plastered the interiors, replaced the flooring with polished concrete throughout, and added black steel windows to frame the views.

    Photographs by Giovanna Silva, courtesy of A2BC Architects.

    A2BC Farmhouse Remodelista Exterior Entry

    Above: Steel windows add a note of modernity to the old stone building.

    A2BC Farmhouse Remodelista Kitchen

    Above: Polished concrete floors are a cohesive thread throughout the interior.

    A2BC Farmhouse Remodelista Dining Room

    Above: A minimalist fireplace and bentwood chairs add warmth to the dining area.

    A2BC Farmhouse Remodelista Living Room

    Above: The only dash of color in the living areas comes via a pair of persimmon-upholstered armchairs.

    A2BC Farmhouse Remodelista White Bedroom

    Above: A sanctuary in the summer months: a pale bedroom with white linens.

    A2BC Architects White Bedroom Green Closet Remodelista

    Above: Light green closet doors add a note of color.

    A2BC Farmhouse Remodelista Bedroom

    Above: In another bedroom, more persimmon, via bed linens.

    A2BC Farmhouse Remodelista Bedroom 2

    Above: An original stone wall contrasts with the new structural elements.

    A2BC Farmhouse Remodelista Exterior

    Above: A view of the sloping hillside.

    For another skillfully updated Italian farmhouse, see House Tour: Pastels Go Rustic in a 17th-Century Masseria. And Gardenista presents One More Reason to Visit Italy: The World's Biggest Vertical Garden.

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on September 6, 2013, as part of our Low-Key Fashion issue.

    More Stories from Remodelista


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    The winner of the Remodelista Considered Design Awards Best Amateur-Designed Kitchen is Maya Ivanir of Los Angeles.  

    Her project was chosen as a finalist by guest judges John and Juli Baker, who said: "The tile work in this kitchen is really impressive—it becomes more of a textured wall than just a backsplash. We also like the repurposed island with drawers; it was a nice solution to have some additional closed space available in an open kitchen."

    Take a look at the project and read what Ivanir has to say about planning the kitchen around her entertaining needs, and working with her designer/contractor dream team. 

    N.B.: This is one of a series of posts spotlighting the winners of the Remodelista Considered Design Awards. We're featuring the final three projects this week. Go to the 2014 Considered Design Awards to see all the entries, finalists, and winners. And have a look at the winners of the Gardenista Considered Design Awards.

    Photographs by Itay Gross

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Kitchen in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Maya Ivanir | Remodelista

    Maya Ivanir's Design Statement: The kitchen is the center of our home and our family life. When the Realtor showed us what was then a two-unit fixer-upper, the first thing I imagined was the dining table. The rest of the house came together based on that.

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Kitchen in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Maya Ivanir | Remodelista

    Q: Where do you live?
    A:  
    In Silver Lake, in Los Angeles, with my husband, Mark, and our kids, Daniella, 13, and Sasha, 9, and our dog, Anita. I truly love Silver Lake—it has a small-town feel, surrounded by everything you could ever want in a big city. People are eclectic and creative. I often walk into someone's store, studio, or house and feel positive creative envy.

    Our house sits on one of the Silver Lake hills overlooking the Hollywood sign, the observatory, Griffith Park, Burbank, Glendale, Mount Washington, Eagle Rock, and Pasadena. Before the drought, we could even see snowy mountains from afar. With this kind of view, all you need are big windows. Any design element is secondary.

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Kitchen in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Maya Ivanir | Remodelista

    Q: What were your practical goals for the project?
    A: 
    The kitchen was part of a much bigger renovation project in which we gutted a duplex and turned it into one house. We kept only the exterior walls, wonderful windows, and what was left of the original hardwood floors. We basically started with a blank canvas. I was blessed with a dream team for this project. Contractor Yehuda Arad and his wife, Varda Stern, held our hands every step of the way. They introduced us to architect Ronni Levy, who was open to a nontraditional way of doing things, leaving the design and planning parts to us, and supporting us with drafting, structural engineering, and permits. Much of the designing happened “on the job" and got worked out by Yehuda and me. It's rare to find a contractor who is a creative partner and is as generous and skillful as Yehuda and his crew.

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Kitchen in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Maya Ivanir | Remodelista

    Q: What solutions did you find to your design problems?
    A: 
    The first thing I knew about the house was that the kitchen and all the public areas had to be open, allowing unobstructed views to the outside. I wanted a big, long dining table in the middle of the space, and I wanted a kitchen where I could really cook. Since I'm not a very tidy person—I'm a collector of kitchen gadgets and tableware, and am constantly cooking and entertaining—an open plan is actually not ideal for me. I don't think a kitchen needs to always look like it’s been staged for a magazine, but I do feel that this level of openness requires some type of minimalism and mega-organization.

    The first solution was a big pantry—almost a service kitchen—where I keep an extra fridge and everything that's not in use daily. I do regret not having room for an extra sink in there, but I recently added one outside by the barbecue that serves a similar purpose. The second solution was spending a lot of time planning storage and work surfaces so everything would have a place. For instance, I made sure our coffee-making area is near where spoons and mugs are stored. Who sets the table for dinner? Plates should be stored where that person can easily reach them. When having a party, where will drinks be served? That's where wine glasses should be. Where will the dessert be served? Where's a good place for a buffet? The more questions asked, the better. I think this is even more relevant to low-budget small kitchens. Good planning is one of the most affordable ways to make your kitchen great.

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Kitchen in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Maya Ivanir | Remodelista

    Q: What was your biggest splurge?
    A: 
    The yellow BlueStar range. It was a gift for my fortieth birthday. I'm not big on pricey things—I like quality, but it doesn't have to be pricey. I'm obsessed with finding deals, though I'm happy to spend money on things that are handmade and you can see and feel the love and imagination that went into producing them.

    Q: What advice do you have for someone else undertaking a similar project?
    A:
    If you don't have the budget for your "dream whatever," still let yourself dream it, plan your dream, and then, based on that plan, do what you can afford. Spend on structure and infrastructure: floors, tile, cabinets, work surfaces, and fixtures. Worry less about furniture, appliances, and decoration—those are easy to replace or do gradually. Things don't have to be perfect on move-in day. There are advantages to "making" a space while living in it. 

    Q: What is your day job?
    A: 
    I'm a full-time mom and homemaker (I've literally made every home we ever owned). But it's an ever-changing, very dynamic job description. Recently, as our family needs change, I've been "moonlighting" doing other things. I'm ready for the next step.

    I'm excited to be making homes for other people. I've also started, with my partner, Noran Wolfson, a community-based flower studio, and we're happy to be able to collaborate with the wonderful nonprofit Enrich LA, which builds edible gardens in schools and underserved LA neighborhoods.

    Q: Which architects or designers do you admire?

    A: I have very eclectic taste, which is why I love Los Angeles. I admire Japanese architect Tadao Ando. Locally, I like Neutra and Schindler, along with the more contemporary works of Barbara Bestor.

    Q: Where do you get your design inspiration?
    A: 
    Everywhere. I make notes or take pictures of spaces that make me happy and calm—museums, yoga studios, treehouses, a certain temple we visited on our trip to Thailand, etc.—and then I try to re-create the feeling in my spaces. It doesn't, and sometimes shouldn't, look similar; it’s just the feeling. 

    Q: What projects would you tackle if you had an unlimited budget?
    A: 
    If I could, I would live in more than one home and constantly be changing something. I'm one of those crazy people who loves having handy-women/men around all the time. I love the sounds of tools and the smell of paint and wood. I wish I had the skills to do those things myself, but unfortunately, I don't have it in me. I like watching the concrete being poured, the wood being sanded, and imagining what could be next.

    Q: What is your favorite local shop?
    A: 
    The Los Feliz–Silver Lake–Echo Park area is booming with small shops. I make a point to shop locally and support small businesses in my community. Small businesses can dare to imagine and be creative, and they inspire a fresh and local lifestyle.

    It's hard to choose one favorite shop. I love Skylight Books in Los Feliz for inspiration. Cookbook in Echo Park and McCall's in Los Feliz for food. Reform School and Yolk in Silver Lake for crafty design stuff and just the brightness. Well's Antique Tile in Echo Park for unique handcrafted vintage tiles. I went there for my kitchen and found the triangle tiles in gray and yellow that became the color scheme for my kitchen. 

    Q: What is your best secret design source?
    A: 
    Thrift and architectural salvage stores. We also travel a lot as a family, so I always have my phone full of photos of things I like. Then I look for them at thrift stores. I like found things with a history and a story way more than expensive designer objects.

    Q: What is your next project?
    A: 
    I'm about to start a renovation project in Eagle Rock and I can't wait to be working with my dream team again. I'm excited for the opportunity to create practical, fun, and bright spaces for other people—I hope next time I submit a space to the Remodelista contest, it will be in the professional category.

    Congratulations to Maya Ivanir! See all of the winners of the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards here:

    More Stories from Remodelista


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    Kajsa Cramer is a Swedish ceramic artist with a background as an interior designer. We particularly admire the washed pastels and trim patterns of her delicate tableware.

    Above: Kajsa Cramer's Dots and Stripes Bowls are available in four different patterns; bowls are 249 SEK ($36) each,

    Kajsa Cramer large bowls

    Above: Kajsa keeps her glazes soft so as not to obscure the texture of the fine porcelain. Shown here are pastel-colored bowls from a previous collection.

    Kajsa Cramer cups and bowls

    Above: Kajsa's tactile Mugs, 225 SEK ($32.40), and Bowls, 249 SEK ($36), invite you to cup them in your hands.

    Kajsa Cramer plate

    Above: Kajsa's patterns coordinate, as shown in this set of black-and-white dishes. See the full collection at Kajsa Cramer Ceramics.

     Ready to see more of our handmade tableware finds? Get started with these posts:
         • A Philosopher Turned Ceramicist, Quebec Edition
     
        • Soft Touch: Pastel Pottery by Lenneke Wispelwey
     
        • Ceramics that Once Lived in the White House
         • Painterly Pottery by a New York City Chef
     
        • All the Freshness of New York: Katakana Ceramics

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on July 14, 2012, as part of our Scandi Summerhouse issue.

    More Stories from Remodelista


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    Are you ready to increase your kitchen's IQ? Whether your kitchen is modern or vintage, tiny or expansive, the same ingredients are a winning combination: state-of-the-art appliances and a few well-selected accessories. For appliances that combine style and the latest technology—such as a fridge with a Wi-Fi-enabled LCD display as capable as a smartphone—Best Buy is a good source. Here's a standout, clean-lined kitchen and how to get the look.

    Dumbo Loft Robertson Pasanella kitchen I Remodelista

    Above: This fresh-looking Brooklyn loft kitchen was designed by architect-developers Alloy, with shelving and furnishings by Marco Pasanella and Rebecca Robertson. It pairs high-tech appliances with whimsical touches, including a wall of café au lait bowls. See A Whimsical Family Loft in Brooklyn: Whale Wallpaper Included for a full tour of the loft. Photograph by Matthew Williams for Remodelista.

    Appliances

    Bosch Dishwasher from Best Buy | Remodelista

    Above: Making the most of the latest technological advancements, the Bosch 800-Series 24-inch Tall Tub Built-in Dishwasher offers increased energy efficiency and is quieter than its previous models, plus a larger tub design with increased loading capacity. It's available in stainless steel (shown), white, black, and a custom wood panel; prices range from $854.99 to $899.99 at Best Buy, depending on finish.

    Whirlpool Wall Oven from Best Buy | Remodelista

    Above: The Whirlpool 30-Inch Built-in Single Electric Convention Wall Oven comes with Whirlpool's most advanced temperature-management system. Built-in sensors help monitor precise oven temperatures and ensure even heat—no more partly baked cookies. The oven comes in stainless steel (shown), white, and black, and starts at $1,549.99 from Best Buy.

    Samsung Refrigerator from Best Buy | Remodelista

    Above: The Samsung Four-Door French Door Smart Refrigerator features an eight-inch, Wi-Fi-enabled LCD display that brings smartphone features to your fridge: Call your grandmother, check your Tweets, watch your favorite TV show, and track down your misplaced phone, all from your fridge. And with its 28-cubic-feet capacity, the refrigerator has enough room to fit up to 28 bags of groceries. It also has a counter-height, flexible refrigerator drawer to organize as you please. It's on sale for $2,499.99 at Best Buy. 

    Furniture and Accessories

    Bay Counter Stool from Room & Board | Remodelista  

    Above: The Bay Counter Stool from Room & Board is a timeless design in solid walnut made by Newport Furniture, in Vermont. It's also available in maple, cherry, and maple with a charcoal stain; $369 from Room & Board.

    Above: Porcelain Inside Out Bowls are dishwasher- and microwave-safe and made in Japan. Available in four patterns, they're $8 each at Anthropologie.

    Rhodes Kitchen Crock from Pottery Barn | Remodelista

    Above: A stoneware crock can hold kitchen tools you want to keep within reach or double as a vase (as shown on the kitchen island above). The large Rhodes Kitchen Crock is $39 and the medium (at left) is $24 at Pottery Barn.

    Above: These Cherry Wood Salad Bowls from Williams-Sonoma are made in Wisconsin using traditional butcher-block construction. They start at $65 for a 12-inch bowl.

    More Stories from Remodelista


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    Rusticity achieved: 11 bedrooms with simple wood walls that do double-duty as headboards.

    Wood Wall in a Bedroom Designed by Erin Martin | Remodelista

    Above: A bedroom in Northern California by designer Erin Martin.

    Ace Hotel Portland Oregon Timber Headboard | Remodelista

    Above: A rustic wall at the Ace Hotel in Portland, OR (for a similar look, consider PIet Hein Eek's Scrapwood Wallpaper).

    Briggs Edward Reclaimed Wood Bedroom Wall | Remodelista

    Above: In a North Carolina barn, designers Briggs Edward Solomon paneled a bedroom wall in reclaimed wood.

    Above: A dark-stained wall in a Swedish bedroom spotted at Matter.

    Plywood Headboard by Hindsvik Designers | Remodelista

    Above: A DIY plywood bedroom by Daniel and Valeria of Hindsvik.

    Alex Kennedy Bedroom via Style Files | Remodelista

    Above: A paneled wall in the bedroom Alex Kennedy via The Design Files.

    Dark Brown Wood Slat Wall via Kitka/Mjölk | Remodelista

    Above: A bedroom discovered via Kitka Toronto

    Mjolk Cottage Plywood Wall | Remodelista

    Above: John and Juli Baker of Mjolk paneled a wall in plywood in their cabin by the shores of Lake Huron; see the whole project at Juli and John Baker in Canada.

    Above: A bedroom at the Fjall Lodge, in Victoria, Australia.

    Graham & Co. Reclaimed Wood Wall | Remodelista

    Above: At The Graham & Co., a Catskills hotel, bedrooms feature rustic paneled walls; see the whole project at A New Catskills Getaway, Croquet Included.

    Lath Wall Jersey Ice Cream Company | Remodelista

    Above: Tara and Percy of the Jersey Ice Cream Co. created a paneled wall using lath (see DIY: Lath Wall by Jersey Ice Cream Co.).

    For more inspiration, browse hundreds of Beds and Bedrooms in our photo gallery, and zero in on Headboards, including several easy DIY versions. On Gardenista, read Pillow Talk: 7 Secrets to Making a Perfect Bed

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on July 26, 2010, as part of our Into the Woods issue.

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    Why does the word "kitchenette" sound so retro? When we recently featured a tiny 186-square-foot summer cottage as our Outbuilding of the Week on Gardenista, we admired the way it relies heavily on Ikea to make modern use of every inch of space (giving houseguests an excuse to stay out of sight till after breakfast). Here's how to re-create the look.

    Above: Furnishings first. The secret to making a 186-square-foot cottage look spacious is diminutive furniture. A 30-inch wooden Tripod Table ($199 from West Elm) seats two comfortably. Ikea's birch plywood Frosta Stool (£8 in Great Britain, not available in the US) is a copy of the Alvar Aalto original and extremely versatile; it doubles as side table or nightstand as needed. Photograph by Nicole Franzen for Gardenista.

    Above: The back wall is covered in four-by-eight-foot Wainscot Panels ($19.75 each) from Home Depot. Photograph by Nicole Franzen for Gardenista.  

    Above: On the shelves, Everyday Restaurant Salad Plates ($17.99 for a set of six) and Everyday Restaurant Mugs ($17.99 for a set of six) are available from Williams-Sonoma.

     

    Above: Before we get started on the fixtures, let's fix ourselves a nice pot of tea. From Staub, an Enameled Cast Iron Round Tea Kettle in basil green is $159.99 from Big Kitchen. 

     

    Above: Bellocq's 3.5-ounce reusable travel caddy filled with Majorelle Mint Tea is $32 from Sundance.

     

    Above: Guests can boil water in the microwave and then pour it into the kettle to brew. A GE 1,200-Watt Black Countertop Microwave sits on its own recessed shelf; $179 from Lowe's. 

     

    Above: Braced to deal with the plumbing? An Edsvik chrome faucet is $49.99 and a Fyndig Single Bowl Sink is $26.98, both from Ikea. They're mounted on a 1 1/2-inch-thick beechwood Numerär Countertop ($195 for a 73 1/4-inch length from Ikea).

     

    Above: Made of recycled glass, the Copper Soap Dispenser holds 13.5 ounces; $30 from Terrain.

     

    Above: A nickel-plated Fintorp dish drainer ($14.99 from Ikea) attaches to the wall with two screws and holds a removable tray.

    Above: Ikea's freestanding two-door Akurum Base Cabinet Faced with Rubrik Stainless Steel is 30 inches wide; $245.

    Are you looking for inexpensive and stylish ideas to kit out a summer guest cottage? See Steal This Look: A Finnish Cottage Kitchen and Dining Room and Steal This Look: Beach Cottage on the Dutch Coast.

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    How to bottle up the ocean's cool, tranquil blues and bring them home with us? Consider painting a ceiling, accent wall, or whole room. Here are several of our favorites, plus a few recommendations from members of the Remodelista Architect/Designer Directory.

    Best cool, ocean-inspired blue paints from Remodelista

    Above: Top row, from left: Valspar Sea Salt Blue, Benjamin Moore Buxton Blue, and Valspar Royal Gray. Bottom row: Benjamin Moore Blue Nose, Farrow & Ball Skylight, and Benjamin Moore Horizon.

    Best ocean-inspired cool blue paint colors, Valspar Sea Salt Blue, Remodelista

    Above: Sea Salt Blue from Valspar is very similar to Farrow & Ball's Skylight, shown second to last (Sea Salt Blue is slightly greener).

    Best ocean-inspired cool blue paint colors, Benjamin Moore Buxton Blue, Remodelista

    Above: Benjamin Moore's Buxton Blue is part of the paint line's Historical Collection and is a favorite of New York interior designers Joan and Jayne Michaels of 2Michaels.

    Best ocean-inspired cool blue paint colors, Valspar Royal Gray, Remodelista

    Above: Valspar's Royal Gray is dark and gray enough to be serious, but blue enough to please color lovers. It also has a beautiful chalky finish that photos can't convey.

    Best ocean-inspired cool blue paint colors, Benjamin Moore Blue Nose, Remodelista

    Above: Benjamin Moore's Blue Nose lives in the same cool, dark vein as Valspar's Royal Gray, but is bluer and lighter.

    Best ocean-inspired cool blue paint colors, Farrow & Ball Skylight, Remodelista

    Above: Farrow & Ball Skylight is the pick of Portland, Oregon, designer Carole Magness of Magness Interiors, who considers it the most beautiful and flexible blue she knows. She says it's ideal on an accent wall, ceiling, or trim.

    Best ocean-inspired cool blue paint colors, Benjamin Moore Horizon, Remodelista

    Above: Benjamin Moore's Horizon is another tip from the 2Michaels, who used the hue on the master bedroom walls of their Abingdon project.

    Choosing paint colors can be daunting; browse the designer-vetted colors in our Palette & Paints series, which includes:
         • Happiness-Inducing Colors
         
     Moody Paints Picks
        
     • Metallic Wall Paints
         
    • 10 Best Pink Paints
          Celadon Greens

    Go to Gardenista for advice on Exterior Paints.

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on March 18, 2014, as part of our British Isles issue.

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    Spotted on SF Girl by Bay: Cheerful knobs, good for adding a dash of color to a child's dresser or affixing to a wall as coat hooks.

    The knobs are the creation of London designer Margarita Lorenzo of Chocolate Creative, which specializes in handmade, sustainable goods for the home.

    Landscape Design Knobs from Chocolate Creative, Remodelista

    Above: A classic set of drawers imagined with Chocolate Creative's Landscape Design Knobs; £15 each.

    A Trio of English Romantic Design Hooks, Remodelista

    Above: The English Romantic Wall Hook (far left) is inspired by the English countryside and vintage embroidery; £15 each. See below for information on the solid-colored knobs.

    A Trio of Knobs as Coat Hooks from Chocolate Creative, Remodelista

    Above: A trio of knobs serve as coat hooks.

    Pastel Colorful Knobs from Chocolate Creative, Remodelista

    Above: Wooden Knobs are available in a range of colors, including red, pale green, pink, gray, turquoise, and yellow; £9 each. Made from plywood, each knob is finished with a water-based paint and varnish.

    Looking for more hardware solutions? Sift through over 200 posts on cabinet knobs and more in the Hardware section of our archive, and for more pastel knobs, see Easiest Cabinet Upgrade Ever, Pastel Edition.

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on August 12, 2012.

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    The winner of the Remodelista Considered Design Awards Best Professionally Designed Living/Dining Space is Massim Design Studio of Brooklyn.

    The firm's project was chosen as a finalist by Remodelista editor in chief Julie Carlson, who said: "I love the crisp, geometric exposed-steel detailing and the clever under-stair storage cabinets and wine rack. Genius."

    Take a look at the project and read what firm principal Jennifer Massim has to say about transforming a soulless space into a "machine for living." 

    N.B.: This is one of a series of posts spotlighting the winners of the Remodelista Considered Design Awards. We're featuring the final projects this week. Go to the 2014 Considered Design Awards to see all the entries, finalists, and winners. And have a look at the winners of the Gardenista Considered Design Awards.

    Winner of Best Professionally Designed Living/Dining Room in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards | Remodelista

    Massim Design Studio's Design Statement: This unusual property, a modest, three-story, single-family house, is quietly set back from the street in Brooklyn's family-friendly Cobble Hill neighborhood. Nestled among a multitude of converted residential factory buildings, the house is an urban oasis. Our use of exposed steel detailing and a muted palette with infrequent punctuations of color—for example, the red stair rail—was inspired by the property’s proximity to the working docklands of the East River and its industrial landscape, as well as by the owner’s desire for a simple, durable solution. The design draws inspiration from the colorful and industrial history of the area, balanced with the modern needs of a family home.

    Winner of Best Professionally Designed Living/Dining Room in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards | Remodelista

    Q: What were your practical goals for the project?
    A: 
    One of our goals (which we apply to most of our residential projects) comes from the Corbusian proclamation: "The house is a machine for living." We take this seriously, and endeavor to make a home into a machine for living by maximizing space and storage and introducing überefficiency.

    Other practical goals for us are maximizing natural light and achieving the perfect balance between open space and private space—the right balance is different for each client.

    Q: What solutions did you find to your design problems?
    A: 
    Entirely removing and replacing the existing stair was the solution to transforming the soulless vanilla box that we were confronted with at the start of the project.

    Winner of Best Professionally Designed Living/Dining Room in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards | Remodelista

    Q: What are your favorite features of the project?
    A:
     I love the tunnel-like stair, the open kitchen with its black base cabinets, the massive industrial ceiling fan, and the exposed structural steel elements that speak to the nearby working waterfront in Red Hook, Brooklyn.

    Q: Where did you cut corners?
    A: 
    We reused the existing kitchen cabinets and rather than replacing them, we had new flat doors fabricated and painted. We reused the existing honed black granite countertop and undermounted sink and the stone fabricator was able to cut out part of the countertop to make way for a larger professional range and then infill an adjacent area of countertop where the previous range existed. I was surprised at the clean lines of the final product. 

    Q: What advice do you have for someone else undertaking a similar project? 
    A: 
    Always hire a design professional when you are planning to do construction. And if you can get the design professional involved during the early phase of property due diligence, this is ideal in order to maximize your end results. On this project, we looked at the property with the owner and discussed its potential prior to contract signing and purchase.

    Q: Who worked on the winning project?
    A: 
    Architecture and design: Jennifer Massim, principal, Massim Design Studio. Structural engineer: Paul Bailey, Bailey's Engineering, New York City. General contractor: John Palanca, Design Tech Construction Corp., Brooklyn. Photography: Amy Barkow, Barkow Photo.

    Q: What does your firm specialize in?
    A: 
    We specialize in residential architecture and interiors.

    Q: Where do you get your design inspiration?
    A: 
    My inspirations often come from city walks, nature walks, textiles and art, and, of course, from our clients.

    Q: What is your dream project? 
    A: 
    Adaptive reuse. I’d love to get our hands on a historic factory building with architectural details. We'd strip the building back to its elements and then proceed with an addition onto the existing building form. I like projects where we're able to strike a balance between that which is brutal versus that which is delicate.

    Q: Which architects or designers do you admire?
    A: 
    Barkow Leibenger, Linda Bo Bardi, and Marcel Breuer.

    Q: What is your favorite local shop?
    A: 
    My favorite shops are in flux. I miss Bark, which used to be on Atlantic Avenue, but I love Greenhouse, City Foundry, and GRDN, all in Brooklyn.

    Congratulations to Massim Design Studio! See all of the winners of the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards here:

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    Several ancient cultures lay claim to the invention of enamel, but the Austrians and Germans can be credited for taking this brightly colored, crushed-glass surface out of the jewelry box and into the kitchen. It was discovered that when vitreous or "porcelain" enamel is bonded by high heat to metal, the resulting nonporous, nontoxic, and nonstick surface is not only an excellent heat conductor but also very durable when applied to pots, buckets, ovens, kitchen utensils—just about anything of a utilitarian nature.

    In the foothills of the Austrian Alps, the Riess family has been making kitchen utensils for nine generations. The Riess company's factory went hydroelectric in the 1930s, and all its electricity has since been powered by the local water source. In the town of Ybbsitz, Riess produces enamel-coated pots and pans fabricated from single sheets of steel, which makes them much lighter than cast iron. The choice of color is lighter too: Many of Reiss's pots haven't altered at all since the 1950s. Perhaps a founding father asked his frau what colors she'd like to cook with, and she replied, "rose, blau, grün, und gelb." Riess interpreted these as soft deep pink, very delicate blue, palest green, and powdery yellow, all finished off with a clotted cream interior. The Riess palette continues to appeal today; here are some notable examples.

    Five to Buy 

    Above: The Yellow Omelette Pan, 8.5 inches across and 1.75 inches deep, is available for $50 at Ancient Industries, my own shop. Various pieces of Riess enamelware in white are also for sale online at Rodale's and Potager.

    Above: The half liter Green Milk Pot is $48 at Provisions via Ancient Industries. It's sold out, but will be restocked as soon as next week.

    Above: A more recent design from Riess, the Stackable Canister comes with an airtight ash wood lid and is made in four sizes and five colors. This example is 2.5 inches tall and 3 inches wide; $44 at Rodale's, which also offers Riess Aromapots, loaf pans, and ladles.

     

    Above: The Blue Roaster, 13 inches long and 8 inches wide, is £40 from Objects of Use, in Oxford, England.

    Above: The Blue Enamel Porridge Pot, 5.5 inches across and 2.75 inches deep, is $48 at Provisions. It's currently out of stock, but will be available soon.

    Object Lessons columnist Megan Wilson is the owner of Ancient Industries and curator of the Remodelista 100, a collection of essential everyday objects presented in the Remodelista book. Watch for her column every Tuesday, and have a look at her past lessons on summer staples, including the Adirondack Chair, the Hurricane Lantern, and the Classic Canvas Tote. We featured her Connecticut shop in our post Purveyor of the Practical and the Timeless.

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on April 15, 2014, as part of our Shades of Pastel issue.

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    White porcelain doorknobs—popular from the Civil War to the 1930s— have a classic, summery appeal that works year-round. Here are some favorite options.

    Rejuvenation Home White Porcelain Door Knob, Remodelista

    Above: Classic and clean, the White Porcelain Doorknob is $35 at Rejuvenation Hardware.

    Porcelain Door Knob by Thomas Hoof, Remodelista

    Above: Thomas Hoof Produkt in Germany offers a Porcelain Door Set that includes two knobs and two key rosettes for €33.50.

    Nanz White Porcelain Door Knob, Remodelista

    Above: High-end hardware purveyor Nanz of New York is the holy grail of hardware; locate a dealer and peruse the offerings at Nanz.

    Classic Rosette Door Knob, Remodelista

    Above: The Classic Rosette Door Set in white porcelain and polished chrome is $83.22 from Amazon.

    Pair of White Porcelain Door Knobs, Remodelista  

    Above: This Pair of White Porcelain Doorknobs has a solid brass shank and polished chrome base and is $40.99 at Amazon.

    Emtek Ice White Door Knob Set, Remodelista

    Above: Emtek's Ice White Doorknob Set is $96 from Low Price Doorknobs.

    Porcelain Doorknob from Nostalgic Warehouse, Remodelista

    Above: Nostalgic Warehouse's White Porcelain Knob is designed for indoor/outdoor use and available in six different metal finishes; $36.54 from Knobs and Hardware.

    Emtek Products in White Ceramic, Remodelista

    Above: Emtek's Almond Knob is $96 at Emtek Hardware.

    White Porcelain Door Passageway Knobs, Remodelista

    Above: The Doorknob Passageway Set in white porcelain is $73 each, $67 each for a set of three, and $49 each for a set of 10 at the Renovator's Supply.

    At Remodelista, Hardware is one of our passions. You too? Have a look at our posts on Nautical Cleats for Home UseFloor Outlets, The Ultimate Bathroom Hook, and DIY Braided Drawer Pulls for $1.25 Each.

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on May 1, 2013, as part of our Renovation and Reclamation issue.

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  • 08/27/14--04:00: DIY: Pressed Seaweed Prints
  • As a native Cape Codder, I've always been fond of seaweed. So when I ran across designer Karen Robertson's pressed seaweed DIY on Garden Design, I had to give it a try.

    Above: Any project that starts with "Step 1: Head to the beach," is going to be A-OK with me. Here I employed my little helpers, Oliver and Solvi, to assist in finding seaweed specimens. We carried them home in a bucket of clean seawater.

    Materials

    • Seaweed
    • Bucket of seawater
    • 140 lb. watercolor paper
    • Cardboard sized to cover your paper
    • Weed cloth or other mesh fabric sized to cover your paper
    • A medium-size artist's paintbrush
    •Two pieces of wood sized to cover your paper
    • Something heavy, such as books, to use as weights 

    INSTRUCTIONS

    Step 1: Gather your specimens and then place them in your sink or a bucket filled with clean seawater.

    Step 2: Fill another bucket with two inches of water. (Instead, I used the other half of my double sink.) Then slide a piece of watercolor paper into the tub and arrange the seaweed on top, keeping both paper and seaweed submerged.

    Step 3: Carefully lift the paper out of the water, tilting it this way and that so the water drains away but you still maintain your design (more or less). Using a small brush, reposition the seaweed into the desired composition and brush away any unwanted bits of seaweed and sand. 

    Step 4: Carefully place your arrangement on a piece of corrugated cardboard and gently place a piece of mesh fabric on top. You can layer several prints this way.

    Step 5: Place your stack of prints between the two flat boards and put something heavy on top, such as a brick or your Introduction to World Art books. Wait several days, depending on the relative dryness of your climate. A fan also helps.

    Step 6: After several days, remove the weights and layers to reveal your prints. (If they're not fully dry, it's fine to put them back under the weight.) Using Google, I looked up the names of my specimens and wrote them in pencil.

    The Results

    Above: Two framed prints now grace my mantel. The most delicate specimens and simple compositions turned out to be my favorites.

    Above: After trying this project, I have one note to add to Karen's tutorial: More translucent and delicate seaweeds make better (and less messy) prints. 

    Intrigued by Justine's mantel? Tour her family cottage in our post The Soulful Side of Old Cape Cod. For two more projects that are fun to do with kids, see her DIY Leaf Prints on Gardenista and her Homemade Bayberry Candles.

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on June 13, 2013, as part of our Nautical Notes issue.

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    The winner of the Remodelista Considered Design Awards Best Amateur-Designed Bath Space is Deborah Bowman of Calistoga, California.

    Bowman's project was chosen as a finalist by guest judge Gesa Hansen, who said: "It's a real masculine design without being cold. I love the bathtub's mix of materials. The gray linen curtain also adds so much coziness, and I love the tile pattern on the shower floor. Good choice of wall lamps next to the mirror—that is something so hard to find!"

    Take a look at the project below, and read what Bowman has to say about choosing low-maintenance materials and getting the oversized bath she always wanted. 

    N.B.: This is the final in our series of posts spotlighting the winners of the Remodelista Considered Design Awards. Our huge thanks to all who participated. Go to the 2014 Considered Design Awards to see all the entries, finalists, and winners. And have a look at the winners of the Gardenista Considered Design Awards too. 

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Bath Space in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Deborah Bowman | Remodelista

    Deborah Bowman's Design Statement: Two years ago my husband and I completed a total remodel of our 1960s weekend house outside of Calistoga, California. This included a 500-square-foot master suite addition. Having a background in graphic design, I drew the preliminary plans for the house using Adobe Illustrator, and although an architect drew the final plans, I specified and ordered all finishes, materials, cabinetry, and fixtures. I wanted a generously sized bathroom, and that’s what I got. It’s almost too big in relation to the master bedroom. The ceilings are very high and one whole side of the room opens to the outdoors. It's my favorite room in the house! In the morning it's flooded with light from the southeast-facing windows. And at night I can pull down the hidden window screens and feel like I’m bathing outside. I chose natural materials that are classic and practical: fumed white oak floors, a honed Carrera marble tub deck, a carved basalt stone surround that mimics corrugated metal, and ceramic shower wall tiles that look like stone and don’t show any rust stains from our well water. I also played with pattern and texture: the hexagonal tiles on the shower floor, the veins in the marble, the carved basalt, the striped rug, and the Turkish towels all help to create visual interest.

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Bath Space in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Deborah Bowman | Remodelista

    Q: Where do you live? 
    A: Most of the time, I live in Berkeley, California, with my husband and two dogs. About seven years ago, my husband and I bought an eight-acre property in the wine country outside of Calistoga. The property was a mess, but it had the rare combination we sought: peace, privacy, and raw beauty. The house was built in the 1960s and was essentially a stucco box with tiny aluminum windows and cottage cheese ceilings. We did a temporary remodel on the cheap and lived in the place for five years. Then, two years ago, we embarked on a total remodel, keeping the original footprint but adding an additional 500-square-foot master bedroom and bathroom. We wanted something completely different in style from our main house (a 1920s Mediterranean); we also wanted it to be in keeping with the other buildings on the property, and in-step with the farmhouse vernacular of the area. What we ended up with is a midcentury-inspired industrial/farmhouse mash-up.

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Bath Space in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Deborah Bowman | Remodelista

    Q: What are your favorite features of the project? 
    A: The luxurious size of the room, the awning windows and door that open to a private garden area, and the combination of materials: fumed oak, carved basalt, Carrara marble, and patterned hexagonal tiles.

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Bath Space in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Deborah Bowman | Remodelista

    Q: What solutions did you find to your design problems?
    A: I didn't want to worry about maintenance of the wood floors and grout. The white oak floors are fumed instead of polished and are essentially the same color as the dirt outside, so every footprint isn't visible. And I chose a dark tile and grout that wouldn't show any rust stains from our well water.

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Bath Space in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Deborah Bowman | Remodelista

    Q: What advice do you have for anyone undertaking a similar project? 
    A: Find a contractor who you like! My husband and I had heard contractor horror stories and were warned that a major remodel could lead to divorce. We actually found the process to be fairly painless and we attribute that, in large part, to our contractor. Aside from being a super nice, conscientious, honest guy, he always answered our calls and was willing to put up with my need to see mockups of every detail before it was installed. 

    Winner of Best Amateur-Designed Bath Space in the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards, Deborah Bowman | Remodelista

    Q: Where do you get your design inspiration?
    A: From Remodelista, of course! No kidding.

    Q: What is your day job? 
    A: I am a former graphic designer. I stopped working when we bought our Calistoga property and have not gone back. The remodel, restoration, and maintenance of the property has been more time-consuming than I could have imagined. What we bought as a weekend place has become a semi-full-time job—unpaid but rewarding.

    Q: Which architects or designers do you admire? 
    A: Architect Howard Backen and designer Erin Martin.

    Q: What are your favorite local shops? 
    A: Shed in Healdsburg, in Sonoma, California; Erica Tanov in Berkeley and Marin; and Urban Ore in Berkeley.

    Q: What projects would you tackle if you had unlimited funds?
    A: I have a long list, at the top of which would be to redo my Berkeley kitchen and master bathroom; both are almost entirely original to the house built in 1927. I would also love to remodel the guesthouse on our Calistoga property. And, what the heck, if we're talking unlimited funds, I'd love to buy houses, remodel them, and sell them for fun (and profit?).

    Congratulations to Deborah Bowman! See all winners of the 2014 Remodelista Considered Design Awards here: 

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    Remember life before the Internet? Long afternoons loitering outdoors, indoors, and over extended meals, when it felt like there was just more time available. Three siblings from South Africa were looking to re-create that feeling when they opened Nelson the Seagull, in Gastown, Vancouver. "We wanted to make a space where every meal feels like a lazy summer day spent with friends, leisurely snacking on simple but delicious food," owner Jodie Balfour says.

    Jodie and his brother and sister, Jonathan and Lee, serve up organic food, freshly baked bread, and coffee. Their coffee credo is, "No destroyed decaf coffee," and their name references Dawn & Des Lindbergh's 1971 cover of Peter E. Bennett's song "The Seagull's Name Was Nelson," written during Nelson Mandela's 27 years in prison and a reminder of their home country. Another reason to take time out of your day? Instructor Ally Mazerolle teaches yoga at Nelson on Monday and Wednesday evenings followed by an organic meal, all for CA $25 (approximately $23).

    Nelson the Seagull Store Front in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: Nelson the Seagull is located at 315 Carrall Street, in Vancouver's Gastown neighborhood. Photograph via Follow Me Foodie

    Nelson the Seagull in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: The Balfours worked with designer Zoë Pawlak, who preserved the building's original mosaic floors and filled gaps with buffed and polished cement. Photograph by Natsumi of Sokokashiko

    Nelson the Seagull in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: A multidrawer sideboard and a table surrounded by vintage Tolix Marais A Chairs. Photograph via Jess in Vancouver.

    Nelson the Seagull in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: South African flora on display in eclectic glass vases: leaves pulled from banksia plants and pincushion protea. Photograph by Natsumi of Sokokashiko

    Nelson the Seagull in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: Bunting and the menu board. (See Festive Bunting for 10 options.) Photograph by Natsumi of Sokokashiko.

    Nelson the Seagull in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: Nelson the Seagull's ornithological theme carries over onto the coffee cups. Photograph by Natsumi of Sokokashiko.

    Nelson the Seagull in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: Behind the counter, a wall featuring Nelson Mandela as a young boxer. Photograph by Mia Hansen.

    Nelson the Seagull in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: Natural light is supplemented by amber pendant lights. Photograph by Mia Hansen.

    Nelson the Seagull Vases in a Row in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: Dried thistle branches. Photograph via Smoky Sweet.

    Nelson the Seagull Dining Room in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: The cafe is, in the Balfours' words, "about sun-stained afternoons and the best espresso we can pull." Photograph via Singularis.

    Nelson the Seagull in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: A hearty loaf of bread made for a pop-up supper with Pick & Sprout. Photograph via Scout Magazine in Canada.

    Nelson the Seagull in Vancouver, Remodelista

    Above: Lounge sofas and a rough palette table on wheels. Photograph by Vincent Lee for designer Zoë Pawlak.

    The cafe is in Vancouver's Gastown. For more, visit Nelson the Seagull and read about the cafe in Scout Magazine

    View Larger Map

    For three other Vancouver restaurant finds, see Marche St. George, Bestie Currywurst, and Bao Bei Brasserie. And between meals, browse at the Old Faithful Shop.

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    Traditionally used by fishermen and farmers, and in factories and schools, baskets made from thin, pliable wire have long been recognized for their utilitarian value. More recently, designers have latched on to these lithe vessels as a way to introduce a rustic or industrial touch.

    Wire baskets of all shapes and sizes—both vintage and modern—are widely available; they add dimension to a room while providing some very handy storage. 

    Fog Linen Wire Basket Large Grey | Remodelista

    Above: Fog Linen Work's Large Grey Round Basket is $75 NZD ($62.75) from Father Rabbit, in Auckland, New Zealand.

    Vintage Industrial French Basket | Remodelista

    Above: A Vintage Industrial Primitive Two Handle Wire Basket from Vagabonds and Caravans on Etsy; $85.

    vintage egg basket

    Above: Available in many shapes and sizes, farmhouse egg baskets are among the most versatile: You can hang them from the ceiling, place them on the counter, and even use them, as my friend does, as a salad spinner. (Whipping the lettuce around outside is so much fun.) When not in use, these baskets collapse flat for easy storage. Image via Vintage by Alex Keller.

    Wire Mesh Oval Tray | Remodelista

    Above: Fog Linen offers several stylish wire storage options, including this delicate Wire Mesh Oval Tray from Shelf Life; $25.

    antique egg basket via All things Home

    Above: Large egg baskets and their cousin the clam basket are generous enough to hold books, towels, or kindling, and they often come in jolly colors. Image via All Things Home.

    Restoration Hardware's lockers

    Above: Vintage-style Pool Locker Baskets like these from Restoration Hardware are useful for storing everything from toys to linens; $39 to $59.

    chicken wire basket from Olive Manna

    Above: Olive Manna sells a changing array of vintage and vintage-style wire baskets

    wire waste bin at Brook Farm General Store

    Above: Brook Farm General Store offers a line of rustic wire containers made in India, including this Wire Wastepaper Bin; $45.

    AM Radio's DIY egg basket lamp shade

    Above: Wire baskets even make great DIY Lamp Shades. This one, via Hruskka on Etsy, is sold out, but a similar Wire Pendant Shade is available for $69 AU (approximately $64) from Holy Funk of Melbourne.

    Ready to get organized for fall? See all our Baskets & Bins posts, including 5 Favorites: Leather Baskets too Pretty to Hide and Baskets as Wall-Mounted Storage.

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on June 27, 2012, as part of our Farmhouse Style issue.

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    This is the fun part of every remodel: the life-enhancing frills. 

    In our book, Remodelista: A Manual for the Considered Home, we partnered with members of the Remodelista Architect/Designer Directory to come up with a list of extras well worth the splurge. True, these frills aren't inexpensive, but they're often money well spent. We have lived with many of these details ourselves and are eyeing several more for future remodels.

    Here, 11 worth considering:

    Renovated cottage with modern white fireplace, Remodelista

    A fireplace or woodstove

    Fireplaces can have enormous impact as architectural details, and woodstoves are significant and efficient heat sources, point out Seattle architects Malbouef Bowie. "You can have a really simple interior," architect Tiffany Bowie says, "and if you add a focal point, it really grabs people’s attention and interest."

    Pictured above is a minimalist fireplace in a house remodeled by Napa, California, designer Carolyn Leonhardt, who recommends making "at least one spectacular change" per remodel. Read more of Leonhardt's tips in Expert Advice: 15 Secrets for Saving Money on a Remodel

    Full-height kitchen cabinet with pull-out shelving, Remodelista

    Pull-out shelving in kitchen cabinets

    For storing appliances and pantry items, architect Sheila Narusawa suggests installing pull-out shelves. They bring all of the hidden items at the back into the light, making them easy to reach—and easy to put away.

    Pictured above, a floor-to-ceiling cabinet with pullout shelves in a Boston remodel by Chris Greenawalt of Bunker Workshop. See the rest of the project in Rehab Diaries: Tales from the Hood.

    Kitchen with two dishwashers, Remodelista

    Double dishwashers

    Have a large family or love entertaining? BAR Architects of San Francisco suggest adding a second dishwasher to handle overload. Photograph via Pure Style Home.

    Bathroom by Malcolm Davis, Remodelista

    Antifog bathroom mirrors

    Architect Jordan Parnass of Brooklyn, New York, recommends installing antifog bathroom mirrors; they'll save time and irritation in the morning, especially if two or more showers need to be taken. Shown above, a San Francisco bath designed by bathroom expert Malcolm Davis. He shares his tips with us in Expert Advice: 10 Essential Tips for Designing the Bathroom.

    Selldorf Guest Bath Remodel/Remodelista

    Acoustic insulation for bathrooms

    As charming as open-plan loft spaces are, it's not always charming to use the bathroom in one. Ditto for Victorians or anywhere where sound carries well, such as a powder room next to a dining room.

    According to architects Specht Harpman of Austin, Texas, the job of an architect is to consider things like "solar position at different times of day, reflectivity of materials, acoustics, and many other items owners might not be thinking about." We're all for that, and think acoustic insulation, especially in the overhaul of an old space, is a smart move. 

    Pictured above, the powder room in A Hardworking Brooklyn Kitchen by Architect Annabelle Selldorf. Photograph by Matthew Williams for Remodelista.

    Meljac rotary light dimmer, Remodelista

    Dimmers on the light switches

    Sheila Narusawa suggests adding dimmers to all light switches. And you needn't wait to be installing new lights—introducing dimmers can be a simple home improvement project that combats harsh overhead lighting. 

    Shown here, a Meljac dimmer, which we've designated The World's Most Beautiful Light Switch.

    Wood kitchen cabinets and drawers in Dublin home, Remodelista

    Self-closing cabinet drawers

    Brooklyn architects Made LLC suggest installing self-closing cabinet drawers. Kitchens and baths look their tidiest when drawers are closed; if you live with a messy crew, spring for cabinets that close themselves.

    Pictured above is a Dublin kitchen by architect Peter Legge, who used self-closing drawers with rectangular cutouts in lieu of drawer handles. Find this project and more in 10 Favorites: Cutout Kitchen Cabinet Pulls.

    Electronics charging station in Henrybuilt wood wardrobe, Remodelista

    An electronics charging station

    Bay Area architect Jennifer Weiss is proactive about suggesting details that clients don't think to ask for, such as charging stations for laptops and cell phones. Virtually everyone building or remodeling a house has tech gadgets to charge and corral, and having built-in solutions adds ease and order.

    Shown here is an electronics charging station incorporated into a Henrybuilt closet system.

    Bedroom with yellow accents and white interior shutters, Remodelista

    Interior shutters

    Averse to curtains or shades? Old-fashioned wooden shutters are a great alternative, says San Francisco designer Kriste Michelini. We like the way they filter light in unexpected ways.

    Shown above, a cottage bedroom from Here Comes the Sun: 10 Bedrooms with Yellow Accents. For more inspiration, see our posts Indoor Shutters and Black Interior Shutters

    Cat climbing out of built-in modern litter box, Renodelista

    A designated area for your pets' things

    Another tip from Made LLC: "Factor your pets and the way they live into your design plans." If you don't want a cat scratcher in the middle of your hallway or a dog bed on your living room floor, take the time to think this through during your remodel.

    Find the cat hideaway shown above in our post In a Modern London Addition, Books Come First. And for canine ideas, see Remodeling 101: How To Build A Dog-Friendly House. For an ingenious drawer for pet food, see 15 Life-Changing Storage Ideas for the Kitchen.

    Waist high dog washing tub in Japanese house, Remodelista

    A waist-high dog-washing tub

    We had one of these in my house growing up. (Actually, we had an entire room dedicated to grooming our dogs.) And it didn't feel like a luxury: If you bathe your dog(s) a lot, a waist-high tub will spare your back—and double as a utility sink.

    Explore the dog-centric setup shown here in Only in Japan: An Architect-Designed House that Doubles as a Dog Salon.

    Embarking on a house project? Be sure to peruse all our Remodeling 101 posts, including:
         • How to Choose a Kitchen Counter 
         • Architects' White Paint Picks
         • All You Need to Know about VOCs in Paint
         • How To Choose an Overhead Light Fixture
          Solar-Paneling Primer

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on February 5, 2014, as part of our Small Space Living issue.

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    My kids' bathroom is short on storage space, especially around the tub and shower. Where to stash clean washcloths and bottles of shampoo (my teens, it turns out, need a different shampoo for every occasion)?  I found the answer at a marine supply store.

    Canvas Water Bucket Storage, Remodelista

    Above: A cotton canvas water bucket (designed to draw up water over the side of boats) hangs on a hook adjacent to the tub and shower, putting washcloths within arm's reach. It works equally well for storing hairbrushes and shampoo. Photograph by Janet Hall. 

    Canvas Water Bucket Storage, Remodelista

    Above: I sourced the practical—and washable—Cotton Canvas Water Bucket from Hamilton Marine. It's 9.5-inches high and 8.5-inches in diameter, and has a padded rim that keeps the opening from collapsing shut, making it easy to grab things from the bucket with one hand; $35.99. Photograph by Janet Hall.

    Canvas Water Bucket, Remodelista  

    Above: Also used in camps in the Civil War-era, this Canvas Water Bucket has appealing rope handles; $25.99 at C&C Sutlery.

    Dartmouth Canvas Factory Water Bucket, Remodelista  

    Above: Looking to add a dash of color? The Dartmouth Canvas Factory Water Bucket is available in 11 colors (including orange, shown here). It stands just over nine inches tall; £24.00 from the Dartmouth Canvas Factory in the UK.

    Clare Vivier Marine Canvas Bag | Remodelista

    Above: The Marine Tote from Clare Vivier is $165.

    Discover more uses for our favorite everyday fabric: See all of our Canvas posts, including the Object Lessons: The Classic Canvas ToteCanvas Storage Containers, a DIY Painted Canvas Tissue Cover, and Gardenista's Canvas Weekend Bags.

    Go to Nautical Style for more seaworthy design ideas. And take a look at Gardenista's recent discovery: Collapsing Linen Buckets Made in the 1950s for the French Army.

    N.B.: This post is an update; the original story ran on April 9, 2009, as part of our issue The Color of Spring.

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