As you know, this past year we bought our first home. I’m just gonna say, that being a homeowners has been EVERY BIT as amazing as I’ve been dreaming of over the past 8 years. I always looked forward to the day that we’d have our own home and could paint it, DIY it, and do WHATEVER we wanted to it, it became this ultimate fantasy for me, so good that it felt like a fairytale that would never actually happen. Until it did. And it’s been amazing, we love our little house. And I freaking love making this place our home, and this year has been stupendously fun doing project after project, attacking one space at a time, slowly pulling it all together. Our biggest challenge was furniture of course, we had so little when we moved in. And actually I take it back it hasn’t been all fun in the sun, there’s been a lot of heartache mixed in–because especially in the beginning it was so crappy trying to make this place a home without any furniture and without any money. BUT, little by little over the past year, with absolute diligence scouring KSL and Craiglist, and with a few choice new purchases, we’re getting closer.
One of the little design problems I’ve been grappling with this past year is our side entrance, which is really our main entrance–for us and most of our family and friends. It goes directly into the kitchen and stairs to our basement, with a sidestep into our living room. The problem is that there is no entryway at all, and although I make my kids and husbands truck their coats and bags into our hall closet, guests never had a place to put their stuff, and it would just pile up there on the floor by the door. No bueno.
The obvious solution was a coat rack, but I resisted for a long time because I HATED the idea of a coat rack in our living room. There really isn’t space there for any piece of storage furniture, and I didn’t want it to feel cramped or heavy there anyway. It wasn’t until the December issue of Martha Stewart Living magazine that I spotted a peg board coat rack that they had just set pictures on top of, so it functioned as a little art moment and a coat rack. BING! Pretty and functional. Subtle and open feeling. The design in the magazine was completely impractical for family life, the pictures just balanced on top of the pegs and would undoubtedly get knocked off every time someone took off a coat, but I loved the idea and decided to design my own version.
This was MY project from start to finish. I designed it, bought the wood, built it, painted it, and mounted it (okay, Allan helped me mount it). I painted out the bottom coat rack part the same color as our wall paint (Martha Stewart Wetstone Grey), and then painted bright white just the front portion of the picture ledge for some subtle contrast. The beautiful hook hardware was a bit of a splurge, I paid about $30 bucks for 4. The wood was from the Home Depot, and I’m pretty sure it was around $10. I used the 1/2″ X 3″ X 3′ and 1/2″ X 1.5″ X 3′ precut poplar boards, and then had them cut a 3/4″ X 4″ poplar board down to 3′ to match. To build it I just used wood glue, nails and clamps. Nothing fancy there.
Finally I styled it with some art and choice tchotchkes and it’s now one of my favorite moments in the house. (That old guitar dude on that little Mate I brought home from Argentina years ago was just waiting for the day I would realize his true destiny was housing a tiny cactus).
So, I’m gonna call this one as a win. When guests come over we have somewhere for them stash coats and bags, and it the area still looks pretty and intentional. You better believe I still make my kids and hub truck their crap to the closet, not gonna let them clutter it up all the time. This is one of the many nesting projects I’ve attacked with a vengeance that can only be attributed to the mysterious burst of energy one gets in the last couple months of pregnancy. More projects to come! What about you, have you solved any little design problems that you wanna tell me about? I’d love to hear, I could talk interior design til the cows come home.