Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Space to Create

My condo is 675 square feet of mine, all mine. I've decorated it over the 9 years I've lived here in layers. Finding what works, getting rid of what doesn't. As we go through the pictures of my space, you'll see a few themes.

First is the color scheme, which is all based off a favorite poster of mine. You'll probably recognize it. I wanted the space to have continuity, so the colors carried through do just that.

The other theme you'll see is old and new. I love to hit up thrift stores, garage sales, Ikea and Target, to find things that make me happy.  My home office is the perfect example. The table is a thrift store kitchen table, the chair from Ikea and the lamp from Target. Oh and the curtains are sheets a friend kindly transformed for me.

Food is a very strong presence throughout the whole space. Just look at the items I use for organization on my desk top. A lively tomato paste can, an old recipe box and a salt cod box. Yep, food everywhere, and it get's better as we go along, you'll see.

Speaking of organization, I've found unique ways to keep things where I need them, without disrupting the aesthetic. (Yeah, I just used that fancy $10 word, correctly too!)
This is a tie rack with inspirations for recipes attached to it via binder clips. Works for me!

Researching for inspirations is a big part of my creativity. And I wanted a space in which, if need be, I could curl up and read old cookbooks, new magazines and anything else that strikes my fancy. This is my reading corner. Isn't it perfect? My brother Aaron and The Old Bird (my mom) collaborated on a gift of that sweet ottoman, and the lamp is from Crate and Barrel, it is one of the most expensive items I've ever bought ($60, if you can believe it). See if you can find all the food themed items in the space. It's a bit ridiculous, but then so am I, so apropos.

I'll give you a close up, so you can see the details that just please me no end.

Oh, and did I mention the cookbooks? No, oh, ok, here are some of them.

I have a real diverse selection, which keeps the creativity moving. Plus I have fun little bits of things found and given that make me smile when I see them

Oddly enough, red isn't my favorite color, I know, crazy right? It's everywhere. Purple is. And it is no where to be seen. The red color keeps the space bright, without overwhelming it, as it's shots here and there. Like here in the dining space. And notice the art work. Those are cook books and cooking tools in shadow boxes. The table is from a flea market and the chairs are from Target. Great match!

I've been very lucky to have friends and family give me some truly amazing things through the years and the large picture in the entry way is one of them. It is 31"x 51" and a Wonder Bread ad from the late 30's early 40's. 

The same friend (Sue the Awesome!) gave me the pic in the living area as well. This one is a Johnson Outboard Motor ad from the late 50's and is 50" x 63". No other art was needed on that wall! The coffee table is an Osh Kosh trunk that was my Grandmother Ruocco's when she went off to college, passed down to my mom and then to me. And the books you see? All in alphabetical order by author and title, cause everyone is a little OCD.

My love of food vies with my love of books. My name is Chris, and I have a used book store addiction. And lot's of folks enable this addiction, The Old Bird chief among them. The Dr. Seuss books are two of my all time favorites. If you don't know about The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins or Bartholomew and the Ooblek, then you have missed on pure Seussian perfection. 

You may be thinking the tv is almost as old as the sideboard on which it sits, but hey, it was free. If anyone has a flat screen they are looking to unload, here I be! Four of the photos, the boy on a bike, the children playing, the bike, and the boy swimming were all found by the Old Bird in the first classroom she ever taught in. Family history is pretty cool isn't it?

And now for my favorite place to be, the Kitchen. It isn't perfect, nothing in my house is really Pinterest ready, but it is right for me. I won some kitchen appliances (fridge and stacked washer and dryer) in a cooking competition, which are far too big for the space. Making entry into it tight squeeze. But some day, when I get my rear in gear, I'll sell them and get more space appropriate appliances. Some day.... There are two more pic's of the Old Birds on either side of the kitchen stool. And resting on the window sill is an egg weigher that was my Grandpa Ruocco's from when he was a chicken farmer.

My knives, some of them, just the ones I use most often. 

Another corner of the space. That is the last of the pictures from The Old Bird, and the roasting pan (a gift from my sister Katie), which you can almost make out the word Savory on, is where I keep my bread.

There is an open pantry shelf near the entrance to the kitchen, where instead of canned goods I've set more of my collections. Like the red handled kitchen tools from the 20's and 30's. (Thanks Aunt Marguerite for many of them.)

And more cookbooks...because I can not be stopped!

Thanks for taking the tour of my space. Perhaps you'll have an understanding of my inspirations. Perhaps you'll think this crackpot really likes red, food and cookbooks way too much! It's all right, both of those things are very much a part of me. Ciao for now!