The Inspiration behind the Design
By Anaïs Gibaud
Viewing entries tagged
By Anaïs Gibaud
Studio apartments present obvious decorating difficulties that call for great interior decorating tips. The difficulties center around your need to fit the functionality of every room - living room, dining room, bedroom, kitchen - into the formality of one room without making it cramped. These design tips are sure to help you out.
1 - Let it Shine
Dark colors tend to make a space feel smaller. When painting your studio apartment, choose an interior color that is light and bright (that doesn’t necessarily mean white). Pale greens are known for their soothing effect and also help to brighten a space. Yellows are also great to make a small space feel larger, cleaner and brighter.
Interior lighting is also a key ingredient. Properly lighting your small space is important. It is also important to choose interior lighting that does not take up floor space. Track lighting, or halogen ceiling lamps are some great options that provide lots of light without taking up space. Also, use interior lighting to separate areas of your studio. Put one set of track lights in the bedroom area and another in the living room area. This will put the focus on the right spot when guests are over.
2 - Dual Functionality with Style
When designing for a studio, dual functioning furniture is great and will save you on floor space. Check out small end tables with bottom storage. Place an end table next to your couch. Add a personal touch with some fresh flowers in a glass vase. Store some magazines or coffe table books in the bottom storage area for your guests to peruse over.
3 - Fold it Up
Not everything in your apartment needs to be out all the time. That is an especially important when decorating a studio. Instead of purchasing a free standing desk, look into purchasing one that folds-up into the wall. Fold-up desks are available in various types of finished wood, and one can easily be found to match your decor. These desks are great for a laptop space, as well as a small buffet bar when company is over.
4 - Keep It Private
Just because you live in a studio, it doesn’t mean that everyone has to always be in your bedroom. Separate your bedroom area from the rest of the apartment with a privacy screen. Privacy screens are available (from very simple to very elaborate) and can easily match, or even enhance, your style and decor.
5 - Increase Your Storage
There is nothing more damaging to good interior decorating than clutter. You could have a perfectly decorated studio, but if you have papers, shoes or clothes laying around, that’s what people will notice. Increase your storage by using hanging shelves. Hanging shelves hang from your closet, and provide about five additional shelves each. Use the additional storage to get your clutter out of sight and stored away. For items that you want displayed, hang some decorative shelves above your couch. This additional shelving is a great way to display family photos, and collectibles.
6 - Keep It Small
The furniture that you choose for your studio should be in proportion to the size of the apartment. Huge sofas or long dining room tables will make your apartment feel small and cramped. Pick furniture that is smaller, such as a round kitchen table, or a loveseat. Dress up the kitchen table with a runner and a centerpiece. Make the loveseat more dramatic with throw pillows that match your color selections.
Use these interior decorating tips as a guide to decorating your studio apartment.
Professional organizers and helpful-hint sources often recommend storage solutions such as shelves above doors and in corners, hooks on the backs of doors, and peg-board for tools and small appliances. They are masters at maximizing every square inch of a closet with bins, baskets, shelf dividers, and multiple hanging rods. What they don't realize is that, from a feng shui perspective, these techniques can cause as many problems as they solve.
For good feng shui, it's important to leave some of your storage space unused, for doors to open all the way, and to aim for visual simplicity. As you work toward achieving the organizer's dream of a place for everything and everything in its place, keep these guidelines in mind:
• Spaces that are completely full block the flow of "chi" (vital energy) into your home and your life. Full file drawers block the flow of new business; full bookcases block the flow of new information and knowledge; a full bedroom closet can block your ability to attract a new relationship, and so on. Wherever possible, keep 20-25% of your storage areas available for new ideas, relationships, and opportunities to flow your way.
• Storage units hung from the ceiling create oppressive energy that presses down on whatever is underneath them. Anything stored overhead can contribute to feelings of depression, anxiety, and overwhelm. A pot rack hanging over the stove is considered especially bad because it "weighs down" your finances.
• Shelves over a door, or on a wall beside your bed or desk have a similar oppressive effect, and can lead to headaches, poor sleep, lack of energy, or muddled thinking.
• A hook on the back of the bathroom door is fine if all you hang on it is a summer-weight robe and PJs. If the hook is piled with three terry robes and a few extra towels, so the door no longer opens all the way, that's a feng shui no-no. Never use hooks on the back of the main door to your home or on bedroom doors; it is essential that these doors open freely and completely, with nothing stored behind them. (That means removing anything stored on the floor behind the door as well.)
• Vinyl-coated wire shelves on the inside of a door can be a good way to keep lots of small items tidy; however, they should only be used on closet, cabinet, or pantry doors.
• Avoid under-bed storage if you can. If you must use this space, use it for extra bedding and for soft, seasonal clothing such as sweaters. Never store any kind of sharp objects, information (books, videos or DVDs, paperwork), or exercise equipment under the bed; you may have trouble sleeping or feel exhausted no matter how much rest you get.
• As much as possible, store things where they are accessible but out of sight. Peg board and open shelving create visual clutter, so limit these to the garage, workroom, or pantry where they won't affect the energy of the rest of the house.
• Be thoughtful about how much stuff you display in a room. Filling the den with knick-knack shelves so hubby can have his entire collection of sports memorabilia on display creates visual overwhelm. From a feng shui perspective, it's better to invest in closed storage such as drawers and cabinets and have only a few treasures on display at a time. Change the selection every three to six months, and with each rotation you'll rediscover old favorites. By displaying fewer items at a time, you'll actually enjoy and appreciate your collection more.
• Another common problem is family photos and snapshots scattered lavishly throughout every room and wall in the house. Select a dozen of the best ones, frame them attractively, and create a mini-gallery on one wall in one room or hallway. Store the rest or put them in albums. (Okay, okay, you can stick a few on the fridge, too!)
• Aesthetics are as important as functionality in feng shui. Keeping earrings and small jewelry in an ice-cube tray or egg carton works, but it's cheap-looking, cheap-feeling, and will drag your energy down every time you use it. It's okay to be budget-conscious, but appearance counts, too. A small plastic storage box is more attractive than an ice-cube tray and you can get one at your local discount, craft, or housewares store for less than three dollars. They even come in pretty colors so you can choose one to match your bedroom décor.
With these easy guidelines in mind, you can choose storage solutions that will keep your space tidy and create good feng shui in your home. For even better results, remember to get rid of clutter before you put things away. Why waste time and money finding clever storage solutions for stuff you can do without?
What do you think of when you hear the term “junk in the trunk”? The phrase became popular with hip hoppers and rappers appreciatively referring to women with ample butts. Our butts are behind us. Makes it somewhat hard to see what’s going on back there. What’s all this got to do with feng shui?
Just because I can’t see my butt doesn’t mean it isn’t getting bigger! It takes discipline and hard work to keep it in shape and that’s true of your feng shui, too. Practicing feng shui, we know that clutter drains us of chi (energy) and blocks us mentally from getting things done. Often we find a big “trunk” (drawer, bin, closet) and throw all the clutter and junk in there, close the lid, and forget about it. On the surface our desks and our living/ working space looks clutter-free so we get a temporary jolt of good feng shui. We’ve put the clutter problem behind us. Or have we?
Tossing all the clutter inside a storage unit of some kind does help a little bit. But eventually, we’re going to open that closet door or that drawer and see the jumbled mess contained within. That sinking feeling of “where do I begin to clear up this mess?” is a sign that your chi is being drained by the clutter. It’s much better to spend a few minutes each day putting away your stuff, organizing your desktop, and clearing the way for the next day than letting it pile up into a bigger problem to solve later on. If you’re trying to de-clutter an entire room or building, do it in smaller increments until you have the entire place under control so that you don’t feel overwhelmed by the task.
It takes time to get into the daily organizational habit. One spring-cleaning per year is a good start, but does not yield results unless you keep up with the maintenance. You wouldn’t expect to reshape your gluts with only one hard workout, would you?