How to Know Which Server Furniture Piece to Buy

737_sr5438__86013-1362509775-864-850Server furniture pieces, which are also referred to as sideboards and buffets, are as practical as they are beautiful. The pieces originated in Sweden and they were used to put out food for their smorgasbords, or buffets. They’re widely used nowadays, and for much more than just serving a buffet. Knowing which server to buy has a lot to do with the reason you’ll be using it. Here’s a look at what you should think about when selecting the right server for your needs:

The Difference Between the Different Styles

 As you may have noticed, server furniture pieces can come in all kinds of different styles and sizes. Although they all may be referred to as “servers,” they also have other names. Believe it or not, there is a clear difference between some of these terms. Here’s an overview of what those differences are:

  • Hutch-Style. A hutch-style buffet or server is one that also includes a hutch, which is referred to as a unit made of shelves or cabinets that sits on top of another piece. In this case, hutch-style servers or buffets sit on top of a buffet or server piece.
  • Sideboards. If a server furniture piece is referred to as a sideboard, chances are pretty good that it has fairly short legs.
  • Buffet. Typically, a buffet has longer legs than a sideboard, but not always. Sometimes the difference between a sideboard and a buffet lies in its purpose – buffets typically go in the dining room and sideboards go in the living room.
  • Server. Although all of the above pieces are often referred to as servers, a server could be more unique than that. Traditional servers are usually smaller than sideboards or buffets and are a little more decorative or formal.

Decide Which Room It Will Go In

Knowing where you’ll place the server will also help determine what kind you’ll choose. If you are placing it in the dining room, you may very well be using it as a buffet so you’ll want one that uses more horizontal than vertical space, such as our Canyon Server, which also has room for wine bottles and other accessories. If you’re using it as a sideboard in the living room, consider a sideboard server like this one, which has doors and plenty of storage space for whatever is needed. Servers can also be used in the living room as entertainment centers.

Determine What Will Be Stored

Since servers come in a variety of different sizes and shapes, another tactic in selecting the right one is to think about what will go inside the piece once it’s purchased. For instance, a hutch-style server like this one is ideal for those who need room to store their tableware and other items used in the kitchen and dining room. Smaller server pieces are ideal for those who really just need an extra surface to serve food and some extra drawers and cabinets for extra dishware. Once you know what you want to store, you can browse through all your choices knowing exactly which will work and which won’t.

By keeping these things in mind, you’re sure to find the best server furniture piece for your needs.

The Best Furniture Pieces for a Mudroom

3105_a_closeddoors__53946-1447357169-864-850The mudroom has the very practical purpose of being a place to take off our shoes and store our handbags and coats. As a result of this, few people give decorating and furnishing this space a second thought. However, because it is often the first thing we see when we walk into a home, the mudroom does need to have a sense of order and beauty. That means that whatever furniture you choose to put in the mudroom needs to be both functional and attractive. Here are some great choices for the best furniture to put in this part of your home:

Storage Benches and Chests

The great thing about adding a storage bench to a mudroom is that it not only gives the room additional storage, but it also gives people a place to sit while putting on their shoes! Storage benches can hold items that need to be easily accessed, such as hats and gloves in the winter, clutches and purses, and even socks. Alternatively, storage chests are similar except they tend to be larger than benches, which means that they have even bigger storage capabilities. Chests also aren’t usually meant for sitting, but you can place a seat cushion on it so that you can use it in that way if you want.

Wardrobes

Wardrobes are standalone pieces of furniture that are designed to offer additional closet space. Each wardrobe piece is designed differently so you’ll want to buy the one that best suits your needs. Most have a bar where you can hang coats, sweaters, and other items. Some also have shelves that can be used to store shoes and folded sweaters. There are even some designs that include drawers, which you can use to store gloves, hats, and scarves.

Shelves

Shelves are a practical choice for a mudroom and you have a choice between freestanding bookshelves or shelves that you can mount on the wall. Installing shelves in the closet can create additional storage for all your items. If you don’t have a closet, you can use shelves to hold important items, such as shoes, hats, sweaters, and gloves. You can even create a makeshift closet space by wall mounting some shelves and installing a hanger bar underneath the shelves so that you can have a place to hang your coats!

Storage Cubes

Storage cubes are also a versatile choice for a mudroom. They are stackable and come in several different shapes, which means that you can basically create the mudroom organizing system that best suits your needs. Cubes can be stacked to create shelving, shoe racks, and even places to hold folded sweaters, bags, and gloves.

When it comes to selecting furniture for your mudroom, remember to not only choose the furniture that looks the best, but also that is the most practical. Before you begin making purchases, you’ll want to assess your existing space and buy the pieces that will truly enhance it.

3 Reasons Why You Should Use Trundle Beds

cm1625ch__76948-1361383628-1280-1280According to Webster’s Dictionary, a trundle bed is, “a low bed usually on casters that can be rolled or slid under a higher bed when not in use —called also truckle bed.” Although the trundle bed technically refers specifically to the bed that is at the bottom, we usually use the term, “trundle bed,” to refer to the whole furniture piece. These days, it is most common for the two beds to be sold as one unit.

While shopping for trundle beds, you’ll find that they come in a variety of shapes and sizes. For instance, you can easily find trundle beds in twin, full, queen, and king sizes. There are also pieces that have a day bed on the top and a slide-out trundle bed on the lower level. However, before buying one, it is a good idea to know what you will be using it for. Here’s a look at some of the top reasons why using these beds is a good idea:

Trundle Beds Save Space

One of the biggest reasons why people often choose trundle beds over other types of beds is that they offer an easy way to accommodate an extra bed without taking up valuable floor space. As mentioned above, they come in a variety of styles and sizes. For instance, you can easily find a day bed/trundle bed combination furniture piece, as well as trundle beds in twin, full, and queen sizes.

Trundle Beds are Versatile

Trundle beds are also highly versatile, which makes them ideal choices for a variety of decorating opportunities. Do you need an extra bed for overnight guests? Do you only have one bedroom that more than one child needs to share? These are just two of the most common situations that could lead you to buy a trundle bed. Or, the bottom trundle can also be used for massive storage when there is no mattress.

Trundle Beds are Safe

Another great reason why you should use a trundle bed is because they’re safe alternatives to bunk beds. Both bunk beds and trundle beds take up the same amount of space. However, trundle beds are safer than bunk beds because they are much lower to the ground. When it comes to bunk beds, the person who sleeps on the top has to deal with safety risks such as falling off the ladder while climbing in or out of the bed and also falling out of the bed while in the top bunk. All bunk beds, however, do have safety features that greatly minimize these risks.

As you can see, there are some clear reasons why you might consider using a trundle bed. Before making the purchase, you’ll want to think about why you need the extra bed or how much extra storage you need so you can determine if trundle beds are right for you.

How to Know Which Wood Finish to Choose

pan100__42377-1459276302-864-850One of the benefits of buying unfinished furniture is that you have full control as to which kind of wood finish you choose. Wood finishing is defined as the process of protecting and beautifying the furniture and highlighting its natural beauty after the piece is made. However, there are so many choices on the market, it can be a challenge deciding which option is right for you. Here’s a look at your options:

Dye

Some people opt to finish their wood with dye. The benefit of doing this is that dye is subtle and can enhance the color of the wood without being too overpowering. It is also great for enhancing the natural look of the wood. It is also a good choice if the wood has several different colors. Dye is used to balance these colors. The downside is that dye by itself doesn’t protect the wood. It needs to be paired with something else, such as wax or varnish.

Varnishes

There are a few main reasons why you might choose to varnish the wood rather than use other finishes. As mentioned above, when finishing wood with dye, it needs to be paired with something else that protects the wood. Varnish is a popular choice to be used over dye because it enhances the color of the dye while also giving the wood an additional amount of protection. Varnish is also both decorative and durable, and can be found in both water-based and oil-based formulas.

Stains

Stain is one of the most popular choices when it comes to finishing wood. One of the biggest benefits of using it is that it soaks deep into the wood, which not only beautifully enhances its natural color, but also protects, and often preserves, the wood. You can find both water-based and oil-based formulas, as well as those that have either a gloss or matte finish. If you’re looking for a better choice for the environment, stick to a water-based formula.

Waxes

Wax is a type of finish that goes on clear, which means that unless you want to simply protect the natural color of the wood, you might not want to use this option. However, if you decide to dye the wood, you could apply a coat of wax over the dye to protect the wood. As mentioned above, dye doesn’t preserve and protect the wood and needs to be paired with something else. There are both oil-based and water-based waxes available on the market.

Knowing which wood finish to choose can be difficult because each option has its own positive and negative qualities. At the end of the day, you want to choose the one that is best for the wood, matches your existing décor, and matches your lifestyle. If you’re still unsure of which to choose, you may want to contact the furniture manufacturer. They often have a recommended list of options that they feel will best beautify and protect the wood.

Creative Jewelry Storage Solutions

Do you have enough room to store your jewelry? No matter how big your home or apartment is, chances are pretty good that you could use more storage than you have. Instead of buying another jewelry box, consider using these creative solutions instead:

jewelry-armoireJewelry Armoire

These classic furniture pieces are better than a standard tabletop jewelry box because they can hold a lot more jewelry. These pieces are also beautiful and stand on their own as a gorgeous decorative element in a room. The one downside is that if you have a limited amount of space, an armoire does take up valuable floor space.

Closet

If you’re limited on space, consider using a portion of your closet for jewelry storage. After all, most homes or apartments have built-in closets and even if they don’t it’s always possible to buy a standalone closet furniture piece. You can convert organizational pieces, such as storage cubes, into something that can be used for jewelry storage. It is also possible to have a closet jewelry organizer custom made so that it will fit in your closet perfectly and also contain enough room to store everything that you’ll need.

Dressers or Chests

Do you have an extra drawer or two in a dresser or chest that you already own? If so, consider using that to store jewelry! You can easily purchase trays and organizers that will fit in the drawer and allow you to store your jewelry. You can also have something custom made that will not only store all the jewelry you need, but will also fit inside the drawer perfectly.

Storage Cubes

Storage cubes are highly versatile, which means that you can easily use them to store jewelry! Cubes are great for jewelry storage because you can either stack them on top of one another or mount them on the wall. They also come in a variety of different styles besides just a plain cube, such as those with shelves, drawers, or even cabinets. You’re bound to find a style that you can use to store extra jewelry!

Shelves

Shelves are another great solution for storing jewelry, especially since they’re incredibly versatile – you can easily find shelves as standalone pieces or mount them on the wall. You can use the shelves to store additional jewelry boxes and can even convert them into jewelry storage solutions by incorporating things like hooks and baskets to store additional items. Of course, you can also have shelving built that would include areas to store extra jewelry.

In order to find places to store jewelry, you don’t necessarily need to buy additional jewelry boxes. These solutions will allow you to easily and creatively find room for your jewelry, no matter how much space you have.

How to Choose the Right Mattress

Not all mattresses are created equally, but people often treat them as if they are. The truth is that there are a lot of options on the market as to the type of mattress you can buy. Comfort, price, materials that are used to make them, and even medical conditions can all factor into your decision. Here is some information that can help you make the best choice:

Determine the Correct Amount of Support

beautisleep__38991-1432237306-864-850The amount of support that a mattress has plays a big factor in which mattress you should buy. The reason why support differs depending on the mattress is because of its core. You can find a mattress with various core materials, such as foam or innerspring, and each has a different level of support. There are also hybrid mattresses that are made of foam, are gel infused, and have springs. Some people like beds that are firm or extra firm, others enjoy a softer bed, and still others get a better night’s sleep if the mattress is more buoyant. In some cases, personal preference determines how much support is needed. In others, an existing medical condition such as back pain could also play a part.

Understand How You Sleep

Another factor to consider when selecting a new mattress is that it helps to know how you prefer to sleep. Those who primarily sleep on their sides, stomach, or back may find that they prefer certain mattresses. For instance, if you tend to change your positioning throughout the night, for instance, you’ll want a mattress that conforms with your body in order to maximize comfort. Observe the way you sleep so that when it comes time to buy a mattress, you’ll make the right choice.

Know if You Need a Box Spring

Not all beds require a box spring. For instance, all of the beds that we sell here at Gothic Cabinet Craft are platform beds which means that a box spring isn’t needed. There are benefits to not needing a box spring such as cost savings, convenience, and a different level of comfort.

Consider the Style of Bed

Sometimes, the deciding factor as to which mattress you buy will be determined by the style of bed you have. For example, if the bed is a futon, Murphy bed, sofa bed, or day bed you could be limited as to the type of mattress you can use. If the bed is in a more traditional style, you’ll have a lot more choices. On the flip side, if you know that you want to purchase a certain type of mattress, this may impact the type of bed that you have. Be sure that your mattress and bed are compatible before you make any purchases.

Know if There Are Other Factors

There are other items to consider that may impact which mattress you buy. Allergies, if you get hot at night, or if you toss and turn can all impact the type of mattress that you buy. You want to find a mattress that will increase your comfort at night. Choose the wrong mattress, and you’ll be uncomfortable.

If you’re shopping for a new mattress, there is a lot to consider before you make the final decision. With advanced research, you can be sure to make a decision that will improve your comfort at night!

5 Places for Guests to Sleep if You Don’t Have a Guest Room

Just because you have a small home or apartment doesn’t mean that you can’t host overnight guests! With a little creativity and some clever pieces of furniture, you can instantly transform any room into a potential guest room. Here is a list of furniture pieces you can buy that will give you an extra place for guests to sleep without requiring a designated room:

Sofa Bed

No matter how small your place is, chances are pretty good that you have the need for at least one couch. Instead of purchasing a regular couch, consider buying one that can be converted into a bed for guests! Sofa beds are practical and comfortable, and they come in a wide variety of colors, shapes, and materials so you will be able to find one that easily matches your décor. In order for the sofa to be converted into a bed, you will need to remove the cushions before pulling out the bed.

Futon

Futons are an alternative to sofa beds but their advantage is that they don’t necessarily take up as much space as a sofa bed. Not only that, but there are couch and chair futons, both of which convert into a spare bed. If you have an extremely limited amount of space, consider buying a chair futon. The main difference between a futon and sofa bed is that with a futon, you simply slide it a certain way to convert it into bed. No cushions need to be pulled out because the same cushion is used for both the couch or chair and the bed.

Ottoman

benches_coaster_500750_b__73839-1355772927-864-850If you really don’t have a lot of space in your home or apartment, one of your best options is to buy an ottoman that converts into a bed. Although the ottomans that convert into beds are slightly larger than other ottomans, they don’t take up nearly as much space as a futon, sofa bed, or day bed. Not only that, but they also double as a foot rest!

Day Bed

When you first look at it, a day bed appears to be a normal couch. However, these clever furniture pieces also double as a regular bed! Unlike futons and sofa beds, however, you don’t need to remove any cushions or slide it into position in order to create a bed. A day bed is ready – all you need to do is position the pillows and blankets in a different way before sleeping in it. Some day beds even have the option of turning into a queen or king sized bed as needed by adding a trundle that pops up to the same height as the bed itself.

 

Murphy Bed

Another great option to expand the sleeping arrangements in your home is to set up a murphy bed. Murphy beds, also referred to as wall beds or pull-down beds, are designed to be stored against a wall and at a glance, look like an attractive, upright furniture piece. When an extra bed is needed, all you need to do is pull the bed down from the wall. This is an excellent solution for a temporary sleeping arrangement for guests!

People who have small homes and apartments often avoid having guests stay overnight because they can’t figure out where their guests will sleep. By using one of these suggestions, you can allow your guests to sleep in comfort without creating a separate bedroom.

How to Arrange Your Furniture Like an Expert

On the surface, it may seem as if arranging furniture is a straightforward thing. You simply place the pieces in a way that allows them to fit well inside the room, right? Well, that’s only part of the story. Experts know that there’s more to it than that – there’s some artistry involved, as well. Here are some tips that will allow you to arrange your furniture like an expert:

Don’t Forget to Measure!

Before you begin arranging the furniture in a particular room, you’ll want to take some simple measurements. Although you’ll surely want to do this before you even buy the furniture pieces, even if you’ve already made your purchases, the measurements can help you place them optimally. Measure the room’s width and length, as well as any windows, doors, and notable features, such as a fireplace or stairway. You can even take this a step further and sketch a diagram of each room that will approximate how you will place the furniture.

Determine the Focal Point

If your room has something distinct about it, you will want to arrange the furniture using that feature as a focal point. For instance, if the room has a beautiful fireplace, you’ll want to make sure that it stands out. These features, which include things like attractive windows, fireplaces, and even a standout piece of furniture, become the focal point. Your goal is to place the furniture so that the eye is drawn to the focal point in the room.

Make the Room Inviting

productscoastercolorcairns_504904_oatmeal_b2__90428-1452621791-864-850When arranging your furniture like an expert, it is also important to make the room look inviting. It is important to select furniture that increases both the comfort and usefulness of the room. After you do that, the pieces should be placed in a way that maximizes the existing space. In particular, you’ll want to keep the entryways clear so that people won’t have an obstacle in their paths when trying to enter.

Don’t Clutter the Perimeter

One mistake people make when arranging their furniture is that they tend to place all their furniture on the edges. While this may not be entirely avoidable based on the size of the room, cramming the perimeter of a room with furniture will make the space look uninviting. Instead, place the largest furniture piece against the wall and then bring the rest of the furniture away from the edges to create a more dynamic and balanced look. This is a tip that expert interior designers always incorporate!

A well decorated home starts with expertly arranged furniture. After all your beautiful furniture pieces are in place, your next step is to add the finishing touches, such as selecting pictures to hang, choosing your curtains, and deciding on the throw pillows that you will place on your couch or on the beds.

3 Creative Ways to Store Your Entertainment System

If you’re like most people, the entertainment system is at the center of your home. However, even if you have plenty of space, storing the system can be a bit of a challenge – especially if you want many of the pieces to remain hidden. Most entertainment centers have a variety of different elements, such as video game consoles, multiple speakers, and DVD and Blu-ray players, not to mention the multiple cords that accompany these things. How can you store every part of the entertainment center without creating a cluttered appearance? Here are some of our favorite ideas:

Have Custom Furniture Made

photo_19__73307-1437404488-864-850Sometimes, premade entertainment furniture pieces don’t quite get the job done. Although these units are specifically designed to successfully house most entertainment systems, there are situations that require special attention, such as a room that has a unique shape or if you need a piece that perfectly matches your existing furniture and can’t seem to find one that meets your needs. In these cases, it makes a lot more sense to have something custom made. There’s no need to settle for something that won’t quite meet your needs!

Convert Existing Furniture

Do you have a piece of furniture that fits perfectly in the spot where you plan on placing the entertainment system? If so, you don’t necessarily need to remove that piece before you set up your system. Another option is that you can convert this existing furniture piece to now accommodate your entertainment system. For instance, if you have a hutch that fits your television, you can make some simple tweaks so that it will now fit your television, cable box, and even your speakers!

Use Storage Cubes

Are you looking for a way to customize your entertainment center that will also save you money? If so, consider using storage cubes! Cubes come in a variety of shapes, sizes, and styles. They can include shelves, cabinets, and drawers. This allows you to easily combine them in a way that will allow you to effectively house your entertainment system.

Storing your entertainment system can be tricky, especially if you need to save space or if you’re looking for unique ways to conceal the different components in a way that adds to your existing décor. Consider trying some of these creative ideas when setting up your entertainment system!

How to Select the Best Dining Room Table for Your Needs

When it comes to choosing a dining room table, it isn’t a simple matter of finding a style that you like and buying it. The truth is, dining tables come in a variety of different styles, woods, and colors, which means that you need to really consider your options before you make a purchase. Here are some tips that will help you choose the best dining table for your needs:

Measure the Space

Have you ever visited a showroom, only to realize that you couldn’t visualize whether or not a piece of furniture would fit in your space? To eliminate this problem, you should measure the space where the table will go before you start shopping around. Once you measure it, you may not even need to visit a showroom and can order the table online with confidence. Knowing the measurements will help you find a table that is a perfect fit in your dining room.

Decide on the Style

coaster_100500__33891-1291654426-864-850After you measure the space, it’s time to decide on the overall style of the table. First, you’ll want to determine the size and shape, such as circular, octagonal, rectangular, or square. In many situations, the table shape you choose will have a lot to do with how much space you have. If you don’t have a large dining room, selecting a rectangular table that seats ten might be out of the question. Consider buying a table in a smaller shape, such as a square dining room table or a table that has the ability to seat more but only if the extension is installed. If your space is fairly large, you can likely choose any style you want because at that point, it would just be a matter of personal preference. At this stage, you’ll also want to select the type of wood and the color that the table will be.

Make Sure it Matches Your Décor

One thing to keep in mind is that the dining room table is more than a functional piece of furniture. It is usually the focal point of the dining room, which means that some care needs to be taken to make sure that the style matches your existing décor. Whether you are designing the look of the room from scratch, or you are simply looking for a table to replace one that was already there, you need to make sure that the style makes sense with the décor. Although the concept of “style” is completely subjective, there are some basic guidelines to follow. For example, if all of the furniture in the dining room uses a certain wood type and stain, you will want to find a dining table that matches the décor.

Follow this advice to choose a great table that will look stunning in your dining room!

4 Accent Furniture Pieces You Must Have

Your home décor is about more than just your essential furniture pieces. While your essentials create the backbone of the room, it’s the accent furniture pieces that really make it stand apart. A great accent piece not only complements a room’s décor but is also functional. That’s why it’s important to select each piece with care. Here’s a list of essential accent pieces you absolutely must have:

Chairs

ac6116__99937-1351273945-864-850Accent chairs are beautiful, decorative, and highly practical. Adding accent chairs is an easy way to extend the seating in any room! Placing an extra accent chair or two in a room can create a reading nook, allow for additional seats next to a couch, or create seating in a bedroom or office. They’re also space savers, so if extra seating is needed, you won’t need to purchase bulky furniture in order to get the job done. There will certainly be an accent chair to fit your design scheme, as well. Accent chairs can come in a variety of shapes and styles, such as wooden, leather, and upholstered.

Ottomans

Ottomans are functional, but when chosen correctly they can also enhance the décor in your room. Ottomans can double as coffee tables, extra seating, and storage space. You can also buy special ottomans that can be rolled out to form a simple bed for guests. Ottomans come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes so they can easily fit in every room in your home.

Shelving

Shelving is another important accent piece that you won’t be able to live without. Whether you purchase decorative, wall-mounted shelving to hold pictures or vases or you decide to add a larger bookshelf to store all of your books, these pieces serve a purpose while also adding to the beauty of the room.

Chests

Accent chests offer an attractive and easy way to expand the storage possibilities in any room. Add them to an entryway to store things like scarves, handbags, and gloves. Place them in the kitchen or dining room to store extra utensils and cookware. Add them to your bedrooms to provide an additional place to store clothing and linens. In a hobby room, they can store additional craft supplies. Just be sure to select the pieces that match your existing décor.

When planning a room’s décor, think beyond all the essential pieces. As you can see, these accent furniture pieces are just as important. They not only add to the beauty of the room, but also make it more functional.

4 Ways to Use Sofa Beds

Sofa beds are versatile furniture pieces that can serve multiple purposes. They’re perfect if space in a room or in your home is limited. They’re just as attractive as they are versatile and many people prefer them to regular beds. Here are some of the best ideas for using sofa beds:

Save Space in a Studio Apartment

image_1804__70568-1434046644-864-850A studio apartment is a type of apartment that only contains one room. Essentially, this means that your studio will include a sleeping area, living room area, and also a kitchen in one open room. As you can imagine, space is at a premium in studios and it can be difficult to arrange your furniture. This is where sofa beds come in handy. You won’t need to find room for both a bed and a sofa because you will have one piece of furniture that is both!

Turn Your Spare Room Into a Multi-Use Space

If you have only one spare room in your home, you may be tempted to turn that into a spare bedroom. However, if you rarely have houseguests this could be a complete waste of space! Instead, transform your guest room into a space that will have multiple uses by making a sofa bed the main furniture piece! This will enable you to give the room a dual purpose, such as using it for a home office, hobby room, playroom, or a recreation room.

Create More Space in Any Bedroom

Are the bedrooms in your home smaller than you’d like? Sofa beds will enable you to create more room in the master bedroom, child’s room, or even a guest room. For instance, if you have older children, they’ll appreciate the fact that they can tuck their bed away when having friends over, doing homework, watching movies, or playing video games. It is important to know that sofa beds are comfortable enough for everyday use and can solve any design problems related to the amount of space in a bedroom.

Create a Comfortable Living Space for Dorm Rooms

Sofa beds are also popular choices for dorm rooms. The beds provided by the college are often too small to be comfortable and rooms tend to be on the small side. Sofa beds enable college students to make their space both comfortable and practical.

Sure, sofa beds are a practical choice, especially when space is at a premium. However, they can also beautify your home, which means that even those who don’t necessarily need to use a sofa bed to save space tend to prefer them over regular beds!

4 Ways to Add Storage Space to Any Room

No matter how big your home is, chances are pretty good that you could always use more storage space. However, it is possible to increase the amount of storage space you have by using a variety of techniques. Here are some of our favorite ways to make sure you have plenty of room to store all your things:

Maximize Existing Closet Space

Do you think your closets aren’t big enough? The truth is, most people have a lot of unused space in their closets. Before you do anything else in your home to maximize storage space, you should really start with your closet. Make sure that you are using every inch of space possible. By using things like storage cubes, wall-mounted shelving, and custom-made closet systems, you’ll suddenly have more space than you thought possible.

Utilize the Space Under the Stairs

If you have a multi-story home or apartment and need to create more storage opportunities, consider using the acmbn_6003__33024-1350410642-864-850area underneath the stairs! By adding storage items such as drawers, storage cubes, and shelving, you can create more space to store those extra items in your home.

Build Storage Vertically 

Even if you have a small home, chances are pretty good that you still have plenty of opportunities to create extra storage by using the vertical space. By selecting furniture pieces that are taller than they are wide, such as a set of bookshelves or a drawer chest, you can easily create storage without taking up valuable floor space. Another option is to stack storage cubes vertically to create a storage option that will fit perfectly in the space that you do have.

Use Furniture Storage Pieces

Another option that you have to create more storage is to use furniture pieces that have plenty of extra storage. For instance, instead of purchasing a bed that is low to the ground, consider buying a captain’s bed or storage bed, which both utilize the unused space underneath the bed. Some captain’s beds have so many drawers that it could even eliminate the need to buy a dresser or chest to store extra clothes! Other pieces, such as storage ottomans, also serve a dual purpose. They provide a place for you to rest your legs while also increasing the amount of storage in the room.

Mount Storage Pieces on the Wall 

If you need extra storage but don’t want to take up any more floor space, consider mounting storage pieces, such as storage cubes and shelving, on the wall. This will help you create more storage without using any floor space. You can also use items such as decorative storage baskets to make your wall mounted storage look a little more decorative.

Most people have a lot of unused space in their homes that can be converted into storage opportunities. These ideas will help you find more storage in your home than you thought possible! For additional help creating more storage space, you might want to consider getting some special pieces custom made.

Essential Furniture for a Child’s Room

cm7624_z__89110.1459541779.864.850Do you need to find the right furniture for your child’s room? No matter what age your child is, there are certain essentials that you should include. Kids’ rooms are used for sleeping, playing, and later on, for doing homework and entertaining friends. Here are 5 essential pieces of furniture that create a functional room for your child:

Bed

A bed is the most important piece of furniture in your child’s room but there are a lot of options. If more than one child uses the bedroom, a bunk bed is the way to go. If the room is on the smaller side, consider using a captain’s bed or storage bed to add additional storage space. You also may want to consider a loft bed, which will enable you to place a desk or play area underneath. Loft beds are also great for small spaces.

Storage Chest

Do you need extra room to store your child’s things? A storage chest can help your child keep his or her room neat and tidy. It trains them to store their toys away after playing. You can use this piece of furniture for storing clothes and other personal belongings they don’t use anymore. Aside from this, a storage chest can also be used as a mini table or even a bench for sitting.

Desk

Does your child have a place to study or work on project? Children need a place for studying, reading, writing and doing other activities requiring the use of a desk. It’s also great for storing school supplies such as paper, pencils, etc. As your child gets older, it can also serve double duty as a computer desk. In other words, even if you think your child is too small for a desk, they are practical for all ages.

Bookshelves

Bookshelves are an essential part of your child’s room because he or she needs plenty of space to store things like books, personal items, and even toys. They come in a variety of different shapes, sizes, and styles and can even be mounted on the wall. To further customize the shelving, consider stacking storage cubes, which come with attached drawers, cabinets, and shelving. Bookshelves can also be used as room dividers, headboards, and even placed inside a larger closet to allow for extra storage.

Dressers or Chests

Dressers and chests are both essential items in a child’s room, depending on how much space the room has. With dressers and chests, your child can keep his or her clothes nicely folded and even organize them by category. They can also be used to store clothes and toys. Just make sure to purchase dressers that are easy to use and are their height so they can reach everything themselves.

These furniture pieces are essential items for any child’s room. In some cases, furniture items can be combined to save space. For instance, you can purchase a storage bed that has shelving for a headboard and several storage drawers underneath, which eliminates the need for extra shelving and even a dresser. The goal is to find the furniture that suits the needs of your child the best.

How to Know When It’s Time For New Furniture

cm7624_z__89110.1459541779.864.850Good furniture can last for a long time, but even the best furniture could stand to be replaced every now and then. Reasons for replacing furniture include comfort, the furniture’s age, and whether or not it matches your décor. Here’s an in depth exploration of some of the reasons that could result in you needing to add a few new furniture pieces to your home:

The Furniture Isn’t Comfortable

Over time, sofa, chair, and couch cushions and mattresses tend to lose their firmness and shape. When this happens, the piece will no longer be comfortable and you might want to look into finding a replacement.

Existing Pieces Don’t Match Your Décor

Does your existing furniture still match your décor? Over time, our tastes change. If you changed your wall color several times over the past decade, for example, it could very well mean that your furniture no longer looks good in your space. Although you can easily refinish a piece of furniture, this may not entirely solve the problem. For instance, if you used to enjoy antique style furniture but now enjoy a more modern look, it could be time for a replacement.

You Just Moved

Have you ever moved to a different home only to realize that some of your furniture no longer looked right? Instead of trying to make the old furniture pieces work, it could be time to make some changes! For instance, if you had a sectional couch in another home and it no longer suits your new home, it’s better to buy a new sofa especially for your new room.

Your Old Furniture Needs Repairs

Do you have damaged furniture? If this is the case, you can certainly have it repaired – but this isn’t always the best option. People who specialize in repairs could charge a lot of money, and the end result may be something that you aren’t happy with anyway. When your furniture starts to look old or needs repairs, you’re much better off buying new furniture that you’re completely happy with! Seek out new pieces that are solidly built so you won’t be in this situation again in the future.

Some Pieces Don’t Suit Your Needs

Over time, you may realize that your existing furniture isn’t meeting your needs anymore. Before you start shopping, you will want to determine what your needs actually are. For instance, if you realize that you need more storage space in your bedroom but don’t have enough room for an extra dresser or wardrobe, you might want to consider buying a storage bed or a captain’s bed. If you need more storage space in your home office, consider buying storage cubes so you can customize them to suit your space. There’s no need to try to make the old furniture work if it has outlived its usefulness!

By considering these points, it can help you determine if you need to replace your furniture or not.

The Best Furniture for Your Home Office

There is an art to designing a great home office. Whether you work from home or you simply need a place to retreat in order to take care of the bills or read the newspaper, the office needs to be both functional and comfortable. However, before your office is ready to be used, you’ll want to select all the furniture you’ll need. Here is some advice on choosing the major furniture pieces for your office:

Desk

desk6__84864.1458058157.864.850Everything that you do in your office will likely be done at your desk. There are a lot of different styles of desks out there, such as writing desks, corner desks, computer desks, and modern-style desks. Selecting one will depend on what the desk will be used for as well as where in the room the desk will be located. For instance, if the desk needs to go in the corner, you’ll want to consider a corner desk.

Chair

Never underestimate the importance of a good office chair! A good chair will provide comfort and also fit perfectly inside the room and with the desk that you choose. The goal is to select a style that is both functional and comfortable. Styles include ergonomic chairs, adjustable chairs, and stationary chairs with extra padding.

Shelves and Hutches

Shelving is another element that is important in a home office. They can be used to store books, supplies, and other office-related accessories. Choices for bookshelves include wall-mounted shelves, freestanding shelves, and even hutches, which also include cabinets and drawers. Some hutches are even designed to fit over a desk and these are great for expanding storage in a room without taking up extra floor space.

Filing Cabinet

The filing cabinet is one of the most important parts of the home office. This is where you will store all important documents, paperwork, and bills. The surface of the filing cabinet can also be used to store items such as a printer. You can either choose a simple metal filing cabinet or buy a wooden filing cabinet that perfectly matches the rest of the furniture in your office.

Storage Cubes

Storage cubes are a great fit for a home office because of how versatile they are. They also come in different styles such as simple cubes, shelves, cabinets, and even drawers. This means that you can stack them horizontally and vertically to fit your space and to also create the ideal piece of furniture for your office. They can also be mounted on the wall, which will enable you to save space.

When designing your home office, you’ll want to start by selecting all your major furniture pieces. Once the pieces are arranged in the room, your work isn’t over. You’ll want to take the extra step to make sure that your home office is a comfortable place for you to work. Simple touches, such as adding flowers to a pretty vase and hanging some pictures, can transform your office into a space that you want to spend time in. However, it all starts with great furniture!

Increase Bedroom Storage Space with These Furniture Pieces

Do you need to increase your storage space in your bedroom? No matter how big your bedroom is, it can often feel as if you don’t have enough room to store what you need. Perhaps you’re looking for a place to store extra blankets or you find that your closet is simply too small to store all your clothes and accessories. No matter what your situation is, these furniture pieces will give you a lot more storage space:

Storage Beds

IMG_2357_001__81529.1359487294.864.850Consider buying a captain’s bed or storage bed to increase storage space in your bedroom! These beds help increase storage space by using the area underneath the bed wisely. With traditional beds, this space is usually wasted. Storage beds and captain’s beds take up the same amount of area on the floor but they’re slightly higher. You can use the drawers to store things like clothes, blankets, and accessories. If you have a bedroom that is too small for a dresser, these beds are absolutely essential because it gives you all the storage of a dresser without taking up additional floor space.

Dressers and Chests

One of the easiest things to do if you’re looking for extra storage is to purchase a dresser or a chest. However, if you don’t have a lot of floor space, consider choosing a chest over a dresser since chests are vertical and don’t take up as much floor space. How do you know which is right for you? Measure the area where the dresser or chest will need to go and then select the style that maximizes your floor space while also matching your current décor.

Shelves

Another easy way to increase storage space in your bedroom is to use shelves. You can either purchase standalone bookshelves or select styles that can be wall mounted if you don’t have enough floor space. The nice thing about shelving is that you can buy exactly what you need or even have some shelves custom made if you have specific requirements. They can also store things other than books, such as folded clothes, accessories, and even decorative items.

Storage Cubes

Storage cubes are highly versatile because they can be stacked and arranged in a variety of ways. You can even convert them into furniture, such as a storage bench or bookshelves! Some cubes have shelves, drawers, and cabinets, which means that they can serve multiple purposes. You can even wall mount the cubes if you don’t have enough floor space! This versatility will allow you to use them for just about anything.

No matter how big your bedroom is, chances are pretty good you could use more storage space! These furniture pieces will increase your storage space and give you more than enough to find a place for everything you need, such as clothes, accessories, blankets, and even books. Just remember that if you don’t have a lot of space, you can create more storage by selecting vertical pieces, such as chests, or even wall mounting things like shelves or storage cubes.

How to Choose a Great Sofa Set

SM7490__69997.1359404958.864.850There are so many great sofa sets out there that it can be difficult to choose the best one for your needs. You may think you have a clear idea of what you want, but when it comes time to actually make the final choice, it is all too easy to get overwhelmed. Here is a guide that will help you find the right sofa set for your space:

Determine How Much Space You Have

The type of sofa set that you choose will have a lot to do with the amount of space you actually have. If you know that you definitely want two sofa pieces yet you have a limited amount of space, you could consider two love seats, or a love seat and a sofa chair. If you have plenty of space, you have more options because you could easily fit two or more pieces, such as a sofa chair, love seat, and a regular-sized sofa.

Know How to Arrange Your Furniture

Knowing how much room you have for the sofa set is only part of the battle. You also need to decide how the furniture will be oriented in the room. Take some time to think about what the room’s purpose is because that will often impact the way you arrange the furniture. For instance, if you know that you want the largest piece in your sofa set to face a wall mounted television you will need to make sure that your largest sofa in the set is facing the television. This could impact which pieces you buy.

Understand What Shape You Need

Furniture comes in not only different sizes, but various shapes, as well. Each of these shapes serves a different purpose, and the sofa set that you end up with will have a lot to do with the shape of your room. For instance, if you have a smaller room, you will want a sofa set where the pieces are slightly smaller than normal. Other rooms may be better suited to a sectional sofa rather than individual pieces. Your main goal is to find the sofa shape that suits the room the best.

Know Your Upholstery

Once you have all the details about how many pieces you will need in your sofa set, how it will be arranged in the room, and what shape you need, you will then need to figure out what type of upholstery makes the most sense for your tastes and lifestyle. For example, leather upholstery is beautiful but may not be the best choice, especially if you have pets. However, you can simply choose the upholstery that you like the best if you don’t have a practical reason for choosing one over the other.

Choosing a sofa set doesn’t need to be overwhelming. This advice will help you choose the best one for your space.

Tips for Choosing the Best Furniture for Your Needs

productscoastercolorkarlee_181734809_500910_b2__40808.1454441802.864.850No matter which room in your home that you need to furnish, the process will always be the same. Care needs to be taken that you find the best pieces for your space, and to do that, you will need to keep a few things in mind. Here is a list of things to consider when selecting furniture for your home, no matter which room it is:

Understand the Big Picture

Before you begin selecting furniture for the room, you will need to understand the big picture. What is the main purpose of the room? What kind of look are you going for? Once you nail down the basics, you can get an idea for the types of details you want to include. For instance, if you know that you need to furnish your living room, you will make a list of the pieces you need – such as a couch, coffee table, end tables, and an area for your television. By knowing what purpose the room will serve, it becomes much easier to select the furniture that will be perfect in that space.

Choose the Basic Pieces First

Once you understand the big picture, your next step is to select the basic pieces you will need for the room. For instance, for a bedroom, the essential piece of furniture will be the bed. So, you will need to make a decision as to which bed suits the room best. If you need extra storage in that room, you might want to consider a captain’s bed. You can use a similar thought process to select furniture for any room in the home – always start with the basics.

Select the Complementary Furniture

After you choose the essential furniture for each room, the next step is to think of those that will complement the basics. In the case of the bedroom, the main furniture piece will be the bed. From there, you can decide if you need a nightstand, dresser, or additional pieces. However, you can’t really select these complementary pieces until you know what type of bed the room will have.

Save Decorating for Last

Once all the basic and complementary pieces of furniture are selected, the next step is to decorate the space, but you need to be certain you’re happy with all the furniture you’ve selected. Decorative elements such as throw rugs, pillows, and wall hangings are all items that tie the look of the room together and make it a comfortable space. However, you can’t really decorate until all the furniture is in the room and the pieces are arranged the way you want them. This is also the time to buy those extra pieces such as storage benches, ottomans, and even wall-mounted shelving. Even though they do serve functional purposes, they are also an integral part of the decorating scheme.

By keeping these points in mind, you will be sure to find the best furniture for your space.

5 Strategies to Use Your Entryway Space Wisely

IMG_3732__51680.1371581910.864.850Depending on the size of your home, you may or may not have an entryway space. The entryway is one of the most underutilized areas in the home. After all, it’s the first thing that you see when you walk through the door. Not only that, but it can also be practical – storing things such as shoes, coats, and handbags in your entryway can make them readily accessible for when you leave the house. No matter if you have a small space or a big one; these strategies can help you make the most of what you do have:

Hang Shelving

If you have a small entryway, save valuable floor space by hanging shelving! By hanging a unit that has shelves and hooks, you can create a space where you can hang your coats and keys while offering plenty of shelving for your shoes and bags. This will neaten up your entry without taking up a lot of space.

Use Storage Cubes

Using storage cubes is another great way to create storage and a neat appearance in your entryway. By stacking them vertically, you can have plenty of space to store items such as handbags, shoes, and even folded sweaters, jackets, and sweatshirts. If you don’t have any floor space, you can also mount them. The nice thing about storage cubes is that they come in different styles such as shelves, cabinets, and even drawers so you can turn them into whatever you need.

Place a Storage Bench

A storage bench is also useful for an entryway because you can store items inside it and can also use it to sit on when you put on your shoes before leaving the house. They’re also decorative furniture pieces that can add to the beauty of the space. Consider placing a cushion on top of the bench for extra comfort.

Buy a Small Wardrobe

If your entry is too small for a dedicated closet, consider buying a standalone piece of furniture to store your coats, shoes, and other items. These wardrobes usually come with a vertical bar to hang clothing such as jackets, but they also often have shelves and drawers to store other items, such as keys, bags, and shoes.

Use a Coat Rack

If you have the floor space, a coat rack can he a beautiful addition to your entry space. They’re also practical because they can store jackets, coats, bags, and even hats! This is especially useful during the colder months because the impulse is to take off your jacket right when you enter your home and it gives you an immediate place to put it that doesn’t involve putting it on the floor or draping it over furniture.

Your entryway is an important part if your home because it not only gives people a first impression of what it’s like inside, but it should also have storage for items such as bags, jackets, and shoes. Many of the ideas listed above will work no matter what size the space is!

 

Creative Uses for Storage Cubes

GR49D-B-1-OPC-Cube-GREEN__96343.1276179659.864.850Storage cubes are incredibly versatile, which means that you can do just about anything with them. They’re also perfect for people who live in smaller homes and apartments because they can be customized into unique storage solutions. You can buy storage cubes with shelves, drawers, or even cabinets, which means that your possibilities are endless. Here are some creative uses for storage cubes that you can incorporate into your own space:

Turn Them Into a Workstation

Think you don’t have enough room for your hobby or a home office? Think again! By stacking storage cubes in creative ways, you can easily use them to create a space-saving home office or work station with tons of storage space. Just stack the cubes in a way that makes sense for your space and storage needs. Lay a flat piece of wood over the top to make a stable work surface after you’ve finished placing the storage cubes how you want them to be.

Make a Storage Bench

Another great idea is to use storage cubes to create a storage bench. You can put this bench in your foyer or mudroom so that you can have a place to store things like bags and shoes. Simply place a series of colorful pillows over the top after you’re done creating the bench with the cubes. You’ll not only have a place for storage, but you can also use the bench to sit while you put on your shoes! You can also use them in other parts of the home as a way to expand your seating while increasing your storage options.

Use Them for Your Closet

Storage cubes offer the perfect way to organize your closet. You can even use them to create a makeshift closet if you don’t have enough space in your existing closets. Just stack the cubes in a way that maximizes your existing storage space. Remember that you can stack them vertically, too, if you don’t have enough floor space. You can even mount them on the wall, which will enable you to use every inch of storage space.

As you can see, storage cubes are incredibly versatile, which means that there are a lot of things that you can do with them. When converting your storage cubes into other pieces of furniture, make sure you secure all the parts into place. Although they’re designed for stacking, you don’t want to risk them falling over or coming apart, especially if you have the cubes placed the way you want them.

Creative Ways to Create More Storage in Your Closet

Do you need more room in your closet? No matter what size your closet is, it might seem as if there’s never enough room. This can be frustrating, but the good news is that there are creative solutions that will help you solve this problem. Here are some of our favorite ways to create more storage in your closet:

Storage Cubes

GR47-B-1-OPC-Cube-Finished__28311.1276179723.864.850Storage cubes are a great closet solution because they come in different styles, shapes, and sizes. Some cubes even have shelves, doors, and drawers, so that you can customize them to fit your every storage need. You can also mount them on the wall so that you can keep your floor space free or even stack them vertically to create more storage if you have a narrow closet. Cubes can be used to store accessories, miscellaneous items, and even folded articles of clothing.

Shelves

Shelves are another option that can create more space in your closet. The nice thing about shelves is that they come in different shapes and sizes so you are sure to find one that will fit in your closet. You can also mount them on the wall if you don’t have the floor space and even stack multiple shelving units vertically if you have a high ceiling. Shelves offer a great way to store accessories such as shoes, hats, and purses as well as folded items of clothing, such as t-shirts, sweaters, and sweatshirts.

Closet Systems

The nice thing about closet systems is that you can customize them in a way that will maximize your storage space. By using elements such as shelving units, hanger bars, and drawers, you will be able to expand the storage space in your closet considerably. Although you could easily assemble your own closet system, this isn’t always the best option. By hiring an expert to create a great system based on your exact measurements, you will be sure to maximize your closet space.

Storage Containers

If you have a lot of miscellaneous items that need to be stored in your closet, consider using storage containers. These also come in a variety of shapes and sizes and can even be stacked on top of each other. You could also use larger storage containers, such as trunks, to hold things like linens, blankets, towels, and even folded sweaters or sweatshirts. Your goal will be to find the containers that best match your décor style and can easily fit in your closet space.

When finding ways to add more space to your closet, you should consider using every inch of wall and floor space that you have. Before you start buying items, be sure to measure carefully so that you will be sure to buy pieces that fit.

Discover the Best Bookcase for Your Needs

A bookcase is one of those pieces of furniture that we tend to take for granted. In fact, we don’t even notice that we need one until we have items to store that don’t have a home! The truth is, bookshelves can be used for more than just storing books – they can also be used for storage, decorative purposes, and more. Here’s an overview of how to find the right bookcase for your needs:

Determine the Purpose of the Bookcase

book50__03621.1458933923.864.850Before you select a bookcase, it is a good idea to know what it will be used for ahead of time. This is such a versatile piece of furniture. You can do nearly anything you want with it! For instance, if you know that you will be using it to store decorative elements, you will want to select a style that is decorative in its own way. If you know that you will be cramming it with books, you’ll want to make sure that you choose a unit big enough for all the books you have. Different bookcases are built to serve different purposes, too. For instance, a large wall unit can be used to provide additional storage in a home office or even in the family room. The possibilities are endless, which is why you need to have a plan before you make the purchase.

Measure the Area

One of the first things you need to do before buying a bookcase is measure the space where you want to place it. If you don’t take the time to measure, you could end up with a bookshelf that is either too small or too large. Don’t forget to measure the vertical space, as well. Your goal is to find the unit that best fits your space. For instance, if you have a tall ceiling but not a lot of floor space, you’ll want to choose something that has a lot of height but that has a narrower width so that you can store as many items as possible on it.

Consider the Size of the Shelves

Do you need to find a home for a lot of items that all have different sizes? If so, you should consider buying a bookcase with shelves that can be adjusted! Having full control over the way the shelves are spaced is the easiest way to make sure you have enough room. This means that you can easily use it to hold taller items, such as a vase or a large book, that wouldn’t fit on smaller shelves. Otherwise, you would need to measure all the items you will be placing on the shelves so that you can buy the correct unit.

There are bookcases out there to suit just about every purpose, so it’s important to take a calculated approach so that you can be sure to select the right style for your needs.

How to Choose the Best Coffee Table

It’s easy to underestimate the importance of a great coffee table. At its most basic, it makes a room feel complete. Coffee tables are also practical because they can be used as a footrest, for storage, or as a workspace if space in your home is at a premium. However, there are so many different coffee table options out there, it can be hard to find the best one for your needs. Here are some of our tips for choosing a coffee table:

Choose Your Seating First

Resist the urge to buy the coffee table before you’ve selected the rest of the furniture. Even if you see a gorgeous coffee table before you choose your seating, it’s important not to get too eager. It is much easier to find a table that matches your furnishings than the other way around. For instance, you wouldn’t want to pair a couch set that has clean, modern lines with an ornate, antique coffee table unless mixing the two looks is an integral part of your décor.

Understand Your Space

915_OT1010__72078.1362594064.864.850Coffee tables come in different shapes and sizes, and not every style will work best for your space. Aside from the obvious, such as that you shouldn’t put a large coffee table in a small room, there are other things to keep in mind. The overall shape of the coffee table will also matter when it comes to arranging your seating. If your coffee table is round, you’ll want to arrange your seating in a circle around it. If you only have one couch that will be facing the television, a single, rectangular shaped coffee table may be your best bet.

Decide if You Need Extra Storage

If space in your home is at a premium, you might want to consider finding a coffee table that can double as a storage unit, such as those that have an extra shelf at the bottom or that have drawers. A great example of this type of table is the Mykonos cocktail table featured in this post. The extra drawers can be used to store items that you don’t have space for elsewhere in the room, such as books, games, and accessories for your entertainment system.

Consider A Table That Doubles as an Ottoman

Do you enjoy having a footrest available to rest your feet and legs? If this is the case, consider buying a coffee table that can double as an ottoman. These tables are often made with plushier materials and are designed for comfort while still being sturdy enough to hold other items, such as a filled coffee mug. Just look for styles that aren’t tufted and that are fairly flat on the top. You can also convert a nice ottoman into a coffee table by placing a large tray on top.

As you can see, there are a few things to keep in mind when selecting a coffee table. Your main goal is to find one that matches your décor, fits perfectly in the room, and possibly has a secondary functional purpose, such as providing you with more storage.

How to Keep Your Furniture Looking Like New

You spend money on your furniture, so it stands to reason that you’ll always want it to look great. However, if you don’t take care of your furniture, it won’t look pristine for long! The good news is that there are plenty of things you can do that will help it look great for years to come. Here are some of our favorite ways to keep furniture looking like new:

Buy Quality Furniture

One of the easiest ways to make sure that your furniture always looks great is to buy a high quality piece in the first place. In fact, you can even go a step further and buy a really well made piece of furniture and then finish it yourself. Too often, manufacturers spend all of their resources actually designing the furniture and then skimp on materials, particularly the finishes. When you stain the furniture yourself, you have total control over the type of stain that you use, which means that you’re more likely to use a finish that is of the highest quality.

Protect from Heavy Use

ESPRESSO__04753.1465931575.1280.1280Furniture can sustain damage if it isn’t protected from the wear and tear of everyday use. For instance, for upholstery you can treat the fabric with a stain protector, which will prevent stains from setting so that you can easily remove them. When it comes to wood, you can protect pieces that get a lot of use, such a coffee table, with a glass or fiberglass top. Making sure to always use coasters when placing beverages on wood surfaces can also help keep it looking pristine.

Clean Spills Quickly

How quickly do you react when you spill something on the wood? If you wait even just a few minutes before cleaning it up, this can actually cause a considerable amount of damage over time. The key to reacting quickly is to have items close by that will help you clean up after yourself. That way, if you spill wine on the coffee table, you’ll be able to reach the paper towels before the wine can seep into the wood and stain it.

Follow a Regular Schedule

No matter what kind of furniture you have, whether it’s made of wood or involves upholstery, you need to make sure that you follow a regular cleaning and maintenance schedule. For instance, even if you vacuum your couch on a weekly basis, you will still want to get it professionally cleaned at least once a year. The same is true for your wood furniture. Simply wiping it with a dust cloth may not be enough. Check with the furniture manufacturer for advice on the best way to care for your pieces over the long term. They may even be able to recommend some cleaning products that you can use.

When you spend money on furniture, it stands to reason that you’ll want it to last a long time. By following this advice, your pieces will always look like new!

4 Furniture Ideas for a Studio Apartment

When it comes to furnishing a studio apartment, your main goal is to make your apartment look nice while also maximizing the space. Studio apartments are on the smaller side, with everything you need to live existing in one room. Essentially, your bedroom, living room, and kitchen are all contained in one main room. Styling a studio apartment can be a challenge, but with the right furniture pieces, your job will be much easier. Here are some of the pieces you may want to consider:

Radiator Covers

RadiatorCover4__02693.1437408240.864.850Does your apartment have a large radiator taking up one side of a wall? Radiators can pose problems in a studio apartment because they take up a lot of valuable wall space. When furnishing a studio apartment, you need to maximize every inch of your available area. Radiator covers offer the perfect way to do this! These are units that fit over the radiator and often allow for additional storage. You can also have them custom made so that you can maximize your space even further! Pictured here, you can see that this radiator cover has increased the storage space in the room considerably without taking up a lot of extra space.

Dividers and Screens

One mistake people make while furnishing a studio apartment is that they treat the whole space as if it is one room. In order to furnish it most effectively, you need to segment out specific zones or areas. If you’re having trouble dividing your space up in your mind, buying some attractive dividers and panel screens can make all the difference. This is also a great way to “hide” certain areas of your apartment, especially if you want to keep certain things hidden from guests.

Murphy Beds

Murphy beds are an ideal choice for a studio apartment because they not only save space, but they also keep your bed hidden during the day. This comes in handy if you often have guests in your apartment and want to keep your bedroom area separate from the rest of your space. These beds are also easy to use, which means that it doesn’t take much effort to fold them back into the wall during the day and take them down at night.

Wardrobe

Wardrobe furniture pieces are another great option for a studio apartment, especially if you don’t have enough closet space. Most wardrobes come with ample space to store your clothes, and some even have bars so that you can hang the clothes that can’t be folded. These pieces can also be used elsewhere in your apartment, such as to store linens and kitchen items. You can even convert these pieces into a home office!

Furnishing a studio apartment effectively can be a challenge. However, with the right furniture, you can make it warm and inviting while also having plenty of storage space. Your main goal is to be as creative as possible with the furniture that you select so that you don’t add unnecessary clutter.

3 Ways to Get Your Closet Ready for Summer

Now that summer is here, it’s time to make sure you know where all your warm weather clothes are! The days have gotten much hotter, making it necessary to wear clothes that will keep you cool. The problem is, you may not know where these clothes are when it’s time to get dressed.

Here are some tips that will help you get your closet ready for summer:

Get Rid of Items You Don’t Want

Before you reorganize your closet, you should take inventory of what you 3105_A_closed__89675.1461335632.864.850have so that you can find some things to give away. This will help free up even more space for your summer clothes! Get rid of both winter and summer clothes that may not fit, are in disrepair, or that you simply don’t like anymore. After you do that, you will also be able to see whether or not you need to buy more summer clothes. For instance, if you only have one pair of shorts after you’re done giving things away, you know that you will need to buy more.

Store Anything You Don’t Need

After you get rid of what you don’t want, the next step is to put anything in storage that you don’t need during the summer. There’s no reason for you to keep your cold weather wardrobe items accessible. Sure, you might occasionally need a sweater or light jacket, especially since it still gets cold at night, but you certainly don’t need your heavy winter coats. Storing those items away until next year is a great way to free up closet space.

Make Sure You Have Enough Space

Once you’re sure that your summer wardrobe is complete, your next step is to make sure you have enough space in your closet for it. If your closet is too small, it can certainly be frustrating. The good news is that there are things that you can do to increase your closet’s storage space. For instance, you can easily install a system that will allow you to store nearly twice as many things in your closet. Not only that, but if you’re really strapped for space you can always buy a freestanding wardrobe. This is also a good solution if your bedroom was never built with a closet. When you have plenty of space, it will make it much easier for you to find your summer clothes.

No matter which of these tips you use, you will be rewarded with a closet where all of your summer clothes are accessible. You will also have plenty of room in your closet to store whatever else you need! If you don’t have enough room, you may want to consider buying a special piece of furniture such as a wardrobe, dresser, or even a storage bed!

How to Choose the Right Bedroom Furniture

While it’s true that your bedroom is your sanctuary, it’s only truly relaxing if you’ve created a great environment. If your bedroom has a lot of clutter, an uncomfortable bed, and even mismatched furniture, this can ruin your peace of mind. Finding a great bedroom set goes a long way to helping you design the bedroom of your dreams. Here’s some advice on how to choose the right bedroom set for your needs.

Measure Floor Space

CM7903-CH-CaraI__36836.1296686933.864.850How much floor space do you really have? The size of your bedroom will determine the type of furniture you’ll choose. For example, if you have a small space, you don’t want to buy a set with a lot of pieces because they could make your bedroom look cluttered. Take detailed measurements so that you can buy furniture that will easily fit into the space you do have. This will help you find a set that will easily fit in your bedroom.

Consider Space Saving Options

If you’re strapped for floor space, this doesn’t necessarily mean that you can’t buy a nice bedroom set. Instead, why not consider buying furniture pieces that are designed to save space? Furniture pieces such as captain’s beds are designed with you in mind because they create extra storage. Other options include loft beds, mounted shelves, and armoires are all great options for smaller rooms.

Determine Your Personal Style

What is your personal style? Before you can make any purchasing decisions, you need to decide what your decorating style is. If you love a modern look, for instance, buying a furniture set that looks old-fashioned won’t make you happy! No matter how well the piece fits in your space, if it isn’t in your personal style, you won’t be happy.

Know That Quality Matters

When choosing bedroom furniture, it is important to understand that quality does matter. Before you make any purchasing decisions, it helps to set a budget. That way, you can find the highest quality pieces that your money can buy. One excellent money-saving tactic is that you can finish the furniture yourself. A lot unfinished furniture is of a higher quality than finished furniture because leaving furniture unfinished exposes potential flaws. By staining it yourself, you can save a lot of money without compromising the quality of the piece. Don’t compromise your quality standards just because you don’t have a large budget!

Don’t Be Afraid to Mix and Match

As long as your furniture looks great together, you don’t necessarily need to buy a complete set. You can easily mix and match pieces from more than one set until you create the look you want! In fact, many decorators believe that mixing and matching makes the room look a little more interesting.

No matter which bedroom furniture you choose, your goal is to turn your bedroom into a sanctuary. It all starts by selecting the right furniture.

5 Ways to Use Ottomans

On the surface, it may look as if an ottoman has only one purpose – to provide a cushiony resting place for your feet. As a result of this, most people consider them to be an after thought when coming up with a decorating scheme. However, there is so much more to them than that! These days, ottomans come in all shapes and sizes and are used for a variety of purposes. Here are some of our favorites:

Extra Seating

Depending on how big the ottoman is, you can actually use it for extra seating. This is especially useful if you’re tight on space in your common areas but frequently entertain. The ottomans can be pushed out of the way until they’re needed. When the need for more space arises, you can simply position them in key areas to create more seating for your guests.

Storage

Many ottomans are designed to also be storage units. This is especially useful if you’re tight on space in your main living areas. For instance, you can use an ottoman in your living room to store items such as DVD’s, board games, and even craft supplies. They CM_AC122BL_open__37055.1472159170.1280.1280provide you with an easy way to store things without creating clutter. Since they come in many different sizes, you can easily find one that will meet your needs.

Coffee Table 

Do you think you don’t have enough floor space for a coffee table? Consider turning an ottoman into a coffee table, instead. While most coffee tables take up a lot of space, ottomans also create extra storage, which makes them an appealing choice for smaller homes. Not only that, but ottoman coffee tables are also highly versatile. They can be converted into a bed or extra seating whenever the need arises.

Bed

In a small home, it can be hard to find space for a guest bedroom. However, even if you aren’t able to devote an entire room for your guests, you can easily convert any room in your home into a guest room by getting creative. Some ottomans, for instance, can actually be used as an extra bed, depending on how big they are. Ottoman-style beds fold up into a manageable size and can then be used as extra seating or as a coffee table. When you have guests, you can simply unfold it and add bedding. Once the guests leave, you can easily tuck it out of the way until you need to turn it into a bed again.

Design Element

The clever thing about most ottomans is that they not only serve more than one purpose, but they’re also stunning. Most people purchase an ottoman as an after thought, and don’t realize that they can actually be the focal point of a room’s decorating scheme. Even if they aren’t the focal point, they can make a room more visually interesting.

Ottomans are an essential furniture item for your home, especially since they are so versatile. Whenever you have the need for extra storage, seating, or even an extra bed, ottomans are a practical choice.

6 Ways to Use Storage Boxes

If you need to find more storage space in your home, storage boxes can help. The secret is to choose storage boxes that are well crafted so that they serve a dual purpose – you want them to look beautiful but also be practical enough to store your belongings. Here are some ideas on what you can store in these decorative boxes:

Toys

Does your child’s room always look cluttered? Chances are pretty good that his toys are to blame! Instead of letting him keep them on the floor, place all of his toys in the toy chest 219__79982.1423757780.1280.1280and encourage him to only take out what he’ll use for his play session. When he’s done playing, he can simply put the toys back into the chest. This will not only control the clutter, but also get him into the habit of cleaning up after himself.

Linens

Do you struggle finding room to put your linens? Storage chests are perfect for the job because they’re large enough to fit all the linens that you’ll need for a particular room without taking up a lot of space. They are the perfect size to store items such as extra sets of sheets, towels, and even large blankets.

Kitchen Items

Storage boxes are ideal for storing kitchen items that you don’t use often. This is especially useful if you don’t have enough cabinet space. You can use storage boxes to hold things like pots and appliances that you don’t use often, but that you don’t want to give away. That way, you can use your cabinet space for items that you use regularly.

Shoes

Is your closet too small to hold all your shoes? If so, consider buying an extra storage chest or two to store them! You can also use them to store seasonal items, such as sandals and winter boots. Just take them out of the chest at the change of seasons and return them when they’re no longer needed.

Outdoor Items

Unless you have a garage or shed, it can be hard to find the space to store all of your outdoor tools and accessories. If you don’t have enough space outside to store what you need, consider buying a few storage boxes! These can easily hold outdoor items such as outdoor toys, gardening supplies, and barbecue items. They’re big enough to hold everything that you need without wasting valuable yard space!

Tools 

No matter how big or small your home is, you’ll still need to find room for all your tools. Instead of taking up a lot of space in your home, you can contain all your tools to one storage bench! Most people don’t need their tools on a daily basis, but find that they need to have them accessible when they are needed. Placing a storage box filled with all your necessary tools is a great way to save space.

Even if space is at a premium in your home, storage boxes can help you get organized!

Why You Should Use Custom Furniture

When it comes to decorating your home, chances are pretty good that you know exactly what you want. Finding it, however, can be a challenge. Instead of buying furniture pieces that don’t quite get the job done, you should consider buying custom furniture. Here’s why:

Save Valuable Time

Buying all the right furniture for your home can be time consuming. Depending on how many rooms you need to furnish at once, it can suck up more time than you have. Buying custom furniture can make things much easier. All you need to do is measure your space, describe exactly what you want, and wait for the piece to be finished. When you buy ready-made furniture, you run the risk of finding pieces that don’t quit meet your needs. So, you either need to keep looking, which takes up a lot of time, or have something made that will be perfect.

Better Functionality

Shopping for furniture can be frustrating, especially if you’re looking to address a specific need. In other words, when shopping for furniture you could be looking for a piece that has a specific functionality. For instance, if you have a small space but need additional wardrobe storage, you may want to have an armoire custom made that will fit into that ChestsClosetAroundBed2__08973.1437243277.864.850space. In this case, visiting multiple stores to find the armoire that you want can be unproductive, especially if it isn’t a standard size. In order to truly get what you want, you’ll need to have it made.

Better Value

Even though having furniture made may not be the less expensive option, it is certainly a better use of your money, which makes it a much better value. Sure, there are plenty of worthwhile, ready-made pieces on the market. However, as you may have found, the majority of them don’t quite meet your approval. How much money are you really saving by compromising and buying pieces that don’t quite meet your needs? These pieces don’t give you the best value because they fall short. When you consider how satisfied you will be with something that has been made to your specifications, it makes the slight bump in price completely worth it.

Completely Unique

Because you played a part in the design process, your custom-made furniture is completely unique. Whether you were motivated by functionality or you simply wanted it to look a certain way, chances are pretty good that you have a one-of-a-kind creation on your hands. If you love originality, buying custom furniture is a great option for you! It’s your chance to buy something no one else has! Not only that, but you also have the chance to contribute to the design process. The end result is that you’ll end up with a piece that finds a nice balance between functionality and originality.

Instead of buying furniture that has already been made, consider buying custom pieces, instead!

5 Creative Uses for Hutches

Typically, hutches are used for extra kitchen storage. People use them to store kitchen-related items such as linens or tableware. However, that’s not the only thing they’re good for! They’re incredibly versatile, which means that they have a wide variety of uses. Here’s are some ideas:

Use it For Added Storage 

In reality, you don’t actually need to store kitchen items in your hutch. You can use it to store anything that you want! For example, if you need extra storage in your bedroom, you can easily use a hutch to store clothes, shoes and accessories. Small hutches also make excellent storage units for bathroom items such as towels, beauty products, and even GK27__33867.1422567615.864.850medication. Whenever you have a storage need in your home, consider using a hutch instead.

Turn it Into an Entertainment Center

You can also use a hutch as a concealed home entertainment center. If your hutch has removable shelves, you can usually use it to mount a flat screen television. Other shelves can be used for your home stereo equipment, DVD player, and gaming units. The drawers in the hutch can be used to store DVD’s, games, and remote controls. When you’re not using the TV, you can simply close the doors of the hutch and no one will even know you have a television inside of it.

Create a Home Office 

If you’re strapped for space, you can convert a traditional kitchen hutch into a home office, depending on the design of the piece. Some hutches have ample storage for office supplies, and will allow for easy storage of technical items, such as computers and printers. Hutches are especially useful if you don’t need your office too frequently. When not in use, your office will actually be part of the room’s décor.

Use it as a Bookcase

Hutches can actually double as a bookshelf, especially if it has panels that you can open and close whenever you need to remove a book. If your book collection is worthy of being showcased, you can use a hutch that has glass panels. That way, you’ll always be able to see what you have. One benefit of using a hutch over regular bookcases is that since you can close the cabinet doors, the books won’t collect as much dust.

Create a Hobby Center

Do you have a hobby that takes up a lot of space? If your hobby requires a long list of supplies, it can be hard to find the room necessary in order to store all the items you need. Instead of setting aside space, try converting a hutch into a hobby center. That way, you can always remove the items that you need whenever you want to work on your latest project, and simply put them away when you’re finished. This gives you the option of working on your hobby in one of the main areas of your home, such as on the kitchen table, without creating clutter.

How to Keep Wood Furniture Looking Like New

When you buy wood furniture, you’ll certainly want it to always look its best. Because wood furniture is so durable, it’s easy to keep it looking like new, as long as you know what to do. Here are some ideas on how to keep wood furniture looking its best.

Keep it Clean 

P132-CM3100T-54-CentralParkII__65253.1298391530.864.850One of the best ways to keep your furniture looking like new is to clean it on a regular basis. There are a lot of good furniture cleaners on the market, most of which should be used on a daily basis. If the furniture gets a lot of use, you’ll also want to polish it on a regular schedule. While furniture cleaner gets rid of dust and grime, furniture polish offers an extra layer of protection against damage such as watermarks or scratches. There are some products on the market that do both, polish and clean. As a general guideline, try to clean your furniture at least once a week and polish it once a month.

Protect it From Water Damage

Water can cause a lot of damage to wood because it can harm both the wood finish and the wood itself. Much of it depends on how long the water sits on the surface. Another issue is that excess moisture can also cause mold to grow. Water damage is also very difficult to clean. The best strategy is to prevent it from happening in the first place! Wipe down your furniture as soon as you get water on it. If there’s damage, contact the furniture manufacturer for tips on how to get rid of the damage. If there’s a lot of damage, you may need to refinish the piece.

Prevent Scratches 

Scratches can be very difficult to get out of furniture. There are scratch repair kits available on the market, but this only works up to a point. If the scratches are too deep, the best approach is to refinish it so that you can buff out any dings. However, the best approach is to prevent them in the first place! If you’re hard on your furniture, you may want to give it more than one coat of polyurethane. Also, polishing the furniture on a regular schedule can help prevent minor scratches.

Adjust the Climate 

Furniture that’s in a climate controlled environment looks like new for longer. Extreme temperatures, humidity, and poor airflow can all have a negative effect on the way the furniture looks. In order to keep it looking like new, it’s best to have a climate-controlled environment. The main thing is to keep the humidity as low as possible and the temperature at a comfortable level. If you find the climate to be fairly comfortable, chances are pretty good that it will be okay for your furniture, too.

These strategies can help you keep your furniture looking new for as long as possible!

5 Ways to Create an Entryway for a Small Space

The entryway of your home is the first thing that people see. It should not only be well decorated, but also practical. Having adequate space to store keys, shoes, bags, and coats is also a must for the main entryway of the house. When you have a small home, however, the entryway may either be too small or nonexistent. Here are some strategies that you can use to help create a great entryway, even if you don’t have a lot of space.

Buy a Hall Tree

If you don’t have a coat closet, and don’t have enough room to buy a large armoire, a hall tree with extra storage is a great option for you. Those that include a storage bench have plenty of room for shoes, purses, and bags. Most hall trees include hooks for hanging jackets, but you can also find those that have a small bar to hang them up instead.

Install Shelving

Wall-mounted shelving is another solution that can help create space in your entryway. You can place your keys, bags, and even shoes on the shelves. If you need a place to hang coats, you can mount a hanger bar on one of the shelves. Just be sure to space the shelves far enough apart so that you’ll have enough room to hang things.

Use Hooks

If you don’t even have enough space for wall-mounted shelves, consider hanging a series Wardrobe_single__34284.1392756311.864.850of heavy-duty hooks, which you can use to hang coats, sweaters, and even bags! Smaller hooks can be used to hang keys, as well. Hooks efficiently use wall space, which means that you can store everything you need without using up your limited floor space.

Buy a Small Armoire

When you have plenty of floor space, an armoire is a great solution for your entryway if you don’t have a coat closet. However, even though you can find armoires in various sizes, you’ll still need plenty of floor space. So, if you don’t have a lot of room in your entryway, an armoire will be too large.

Use Storage Baskets

Storage baskets are another great solution for your entryway. Most of them are big enough to hold things, such as shoes and bags, which can go a long way to eliminate clutter. If you really don’t have a lot of floor space, you could always place the baskets on wall-mounted shelving.

In order to create more space in your entryway, there is no “one-size fits all” solution. Since each space is different, you may find that using a combination of some of these strategies will create your ideal space. For instance, you can mount a few hooks and shelves by the door to create enough room for all your shoes, coats, and bags. Remember that if you have enough room for a hall tree or an armoire, that is your ideal solution, because the pieces are beautiful and have more than enough space to store everything that you need.

How to Choose the Right Bed For Your Room

Do you need a new bed, but need some help choosing the right one? A great bed is both functional and comfortable, but there’s a lot more that goes into buying one. Here are some questions that will help you make the best choice:

Which room will the bed go in? 

unnamed__43508.1447433477.864.850The first step to choosing the right bed is to determine where it will go, because this will help narrow down your bed choices. What the room will ultimately be used for is a factor in determining the bed’s style. For example, if the bed is going into the master bedroom, you’ll need a much larger bed than if it was going into a child’s bedroom. If you’re putting the bed into a guest room, you can consider alternatives, such as day beds or sofa beds.

How much floor space do you have?

Floor space is also a factor that will help you select the right bed. If space is limited, you’ll definitely want to maximize the space you do have. For instance, if you need additional storage, you can invest in something like a captain’s bed, which is usually taller and includes plenty of drawers for storage. Loft beds are also a good choice, especially for child’s bedrooms and college dorm rooms. Lofts raise the bed off the floor, which frees up plenty of space underneath for additional furniture, such as a desk and bookshelves. There’s a space saving bed out there that can satisfy your needs!

Does the bed need to be multifunctional?

Not every bed is made just for sleeping – some have multiple uses. If the bed will be going in a common room or guest room, you might consider buying something like a sofa bed or a day bed. This allows you to convert the space into a bedroom only as needed. For example, if you don’t have a room that you can use exclusively for guests, you can buy one of these multifunctional beds and only turn it into a guest room if necessary. For example, you can easily convert a home office into a guest room if you have one of these convertible beds.

How is the room decorated?

Another important factor is to consider the overall decorating scheme of the room. If you have a lot of antiques in your bedroom, for instance, you’ll want a bed that goes with that style. Other factors to consider include color scheme, wall decorations, and the type of flooring that is in the room will also factor in when buying a bed. You’ll want to choose a bed that matches the overall décor of the room.

There are a lot of beds on the market, and narrowing it down can be tough. By considering these factors, you’ll be sure to find one that meets your needs.

Create a Home Office in a Small Space

Every home should have an office. It’s especially important if you work from home! However, even if you work outside of the home, you’ll need a space to pay bills, organize your finances, and use your computer. This can certainly be a challenge if space is limited. Luckily, it’s possible to create enough space for your office; you just need to get creative. Here are some ideas that will help you create a home office that fits within your existing space.

Buy a Loft Bed

Loft beds are especially useful for creating more space in your child’s bedrooms. Many of them even have a bookshelf and a desk already built in! With lofts, the bed is elevated off ACMBK263-Hayden__15285.1307035601.864.850the ground so that you can fit other pieces of furniture, such as a desk or a bookshelf, underneath. These beds are especially common in child’s bedrooms, and also in college dormitories because they free up a lot of space.

Get Creative with a Storage Chest  

Storage chests are more versatile than people realize. Most people store items such as household linens and clothing in their chests. However, they can also easily be converted into a home office. They’re actually the perfect size to hold things like household files. You can also customize it with a storage tray, and a flat area where you can write or set your laptop. You can even hang a bulletin board on the inside of the lid to hold important items.

Customize a Bookshelf

Try using a bookshelf to create a home office! This is an easy way to create a space in the living room for your office because you can easily customize it with a sliding door to hide the area when you’re not using it. If the room is typically used for entertaining and watching television, the last thing you want to see is your work area as you’re trying to relax. You can simply slide the door over the work area so you don’t need to look at it.

Use an Armoire

Did you know that you could convert a classic armoire into a home office? This is an especially good way to conceal a computer. All you need to do is make sure the armoire has a sliding shelf for the work place. This is a really effective way to store your computer. This sliding shelf will become your work area. If the armoire doesn’t have a shelf that slides, you could always customize it. The extra space in the piece can be used to hold extra office supplies.

Convert a Closet

Do you have a spare bedroom? If so, you can convert the closet into an office! This is an especially good idea if the room has a walk-in closet. If the room isn’t being used for anything other than a guest room, it’s a waste to have a closet that isn’t getting used. Even if it isn’t a walk-in closet, there’s more than enough room for a small desk and some wall-mounted shelves.

Even if you don’t have a lot of space, it’s still possible to have a home office! You’ll just need to use these strategies to help you get creative.

Get Your Child’s Room Ready for Back to School

redbrowndesk__39687.1448987555.864.850Kids look forward to summer as a way for them to relax and get their minds off school. However, the school year will be starting soon! Now that they’re older, chances are pretty good that the amount of time they’ll need to spend on homework will increase. Summer is the perfect time to make sure that your child’s room is outfitted for the upcoming school year. Here are some things to keep in mind:

Is there enough space to study?

One of the first things to examine is whether or not there’s enough space for your child to do his or her homework. Most kids split their time between their desk and their bed. If they like to study on their bed, they’ll need a lap desk and plenty of pillows for back support. They’ll also need a workspace such as a small desk, to complete projects, work on their computers, and complete any written assignments. Since there are many different styles of desks, make sure that you choose one that is comfortable and conducive to their studying habits.

Do they have a place to store books? 

As your child gets older, they’ll need more and more space to store their books, even if they need to bring most of them to school the next day for their classes. If they have plenty of bookshelf space, it will inspire them to stay organized and maybe even collect books that interest them for their own personal reading. Having enough space for their books and office supplies will also encourage them to take an organized approach with their schoolwork.

Is there enough room for all the furniture?

If the room is fairly small, fitting all the furniture they’ll need for a successful school year can be a challenge. Luckily, there are plenty of space-saving solutions you can utilize. You don’t need to sacrifice on storage and comfort just because the room is small!

  • Using a loft bed will enable you to store the desk underneath the loft. This is especially popular in college dorm rooms.
  • Get rid of your child’s chest or dresser and use a captain’s bed instead! They have just as much storage as most dressers, and will free up valuable floor space so you can accommodate a desk.
  • Some desks also have built in shelves, which sit on top of the desk itself. This is a great way to increase storage while using the vertical space.

One thing to remember is that buying a new desk or bookshelf shouldn’t prevent your child from storing their clothes and other essentials. In fact, as they get older, they’ll need even more space for their wardrobe! While selecting new pieces for their room, the existing system for organizing clothing and accessories may also need an update. Remember that you can save space by carefully organizing their closet, and selecting pieces like a loft or captain’s bed.

4 Ways to Use an Armoire

Armoires are both visually interesting and practical. Whenever extra storage space is needed, the armoire is one of those furniture pieces that can store extra items while adding, not detracting, to the room’s décor. Here are some ways that you can use armoires while organizing your home:

Organize Your Entry Space

When your entryway doesn’t have a closet, it can be all too easy for clutter to develop and if there is no closet, it can be especially frustrating. This is the ideal space to store jackets, 3105_A_closed__89675.1461335632.864.850shoes, and accessories such as umbrellas and hats. An armoire solves this problem nicely because there is more than enough space to store everything that you need. Many armoires even have a rod for hanging clothes!

Expand Your Closet

If you’re unhappy with the size of your bedroom closet, or you don’t even have a closet, it can be difficult to find enough space to store all your clothes. Sure, you can always buy a dresser, but this doesn’t completely solve the problem because there’s no place to hang your clothes! An armoire, however, is the perfect solution because most pieces enable you to hang clothes, while also having some drawers for additional storage. You’re much better off buying an armoire, or two, than you are trying to cram your clothing into dresser drawers.

Use it as a Linen Closet

Are you looking for a great way to store all your household’s linens and towels? The nice thing about storing them in an armoire is that you can put the armoire in a centralized location without detracting from the décor in the room. In fact, the armoire can be the focal point! If you have a lot of linens, you can even buy more than one piece – one to place near the bathroom to store all your towels, and another that you can place in the dining room to store linens such as table cloths and cloth napkins.

Create a Makeshift Office 

One of the challenges of living in a small space is that it can be hard finding room for your home office. By using an armoire, however, you can easily solve this problem. Most armoires have enough room to store the computer, printer, office supplies, and anything else that can typically be found in a home office. When you’re not using the items, all you need to do is close the door and no one will even know that the armoire is actually your office!

As you can see, the armoire can store anything you want, without creating additional clutter. The next time you need to find more space in your home, consider buying one of these beautiful furniture pieces to elegantly create as much space as you need!

Create Your Ideal Home Office

Abbott_Ridge_Youth_Bedroom_816253672_277_YBR_SET85_b__67167.1357589801.864.850No matter if you work from home or if you’re looking for a place to retreat to while managing the household, your home office will no doubt become one of the most useful rooms in the house. However, that doesn’t mean it can’t be comfortable! No matter how big of a space you have to create your home office, it needs to be a space that you’ll enjoy spending time in – and it all starts with the kind of furniture you choose. Here are some tips that will not only help you select the right pieces for your space, but will also help you make it a great room to spend time in.

Determine the Amount of Space

How much space do you have for your home office? If you’re fortunate enough to have an entire room, the task of finding the right furniture will be much easier. However, it’s still possible to design an office that you’re comfortable with, even if you don’t have unlimited space. Take exact measurements of the space so that when you start looking for furniture, you’ll be able to assess what will fit in the room and what won’t. Remember, if you don’t have a large area to work with, you can create more storage opportunities by using vertical wall space, instead. For example, you can use wall mounted shelving instead of a large bookshelf for storage.

Assess What Equipment You Have

There’s more to the home office than just a desk! The size of the desk, the type of shelving needed, and whether or not you’ll need additional storage are all dependent on the type of equipment you have. For example, if you have a desktop computer with a large printer, you’ll need a desk for the computer and even a small table for the printer. If you have a lot of books, that will also be a factor in determining how much shelving you need. Things like office supplies also need a place, and most offices have at least a small filing cabinet. Do you need to find room for any of these items? If you have a limited amount of space, you’ll also need to get creative. The good news is that there’s always a solution; it just requires that you buy the right furniture pieces to begin with.

Giving the Office a Personal Touch

Now that you have your furniture all selected, the next step is to make sure you’re comfortable in the space. Simply buying furniture and setting it up won’t make your home office a joy to be in! That’s accomplished by adding those extra touches that make a room feel special. Select a chair that’s comfortable to sit in. Hang paintings that will brighten up the room. Decorate your workspace with personal touches such as photos and fresh flowers. That way, you can make your office truly feel like it’s a part of your home.

Bring Out Unfinished Furniture’s Natural Beauty

Are you considering buying unfinished furniture? When most people set out to buy furniture, they look for stained pieces that match their décor. However, unfinished furniture can add another element of versatility because you can customize it however you want it to look. People often buy it to save money, and they’ll often stain the piece themselves. Wood is naturally beautiful and leaving it “as is” is worth considering, as well. Here are some reasons why it’s better to buy unfinished furniture and then stain it yourself: 

Free From Imperfections

Most unfinished furniture pieces have a minimal amount of imperfections, if any. Often, manufacturers will buff out any nicks and dings before staining. If you’ve purchased the IMG_0509__29390.1460661146.864.850furniture new, chances are pretty good that the pieces are as close to flawless as they can get because they don’t want customers to see them. Keeping the furniture bare or stained with a light finish will highlight how flawless it is.

It’s Naturally Beautiful

Wood that is left in its natural state is beautiful. It doesn’t matter if the natural color of the wood is light or dark. The fact that each piece is unique and has its own pattern of knots and rings makes it appealing to the eye. In fact, natural wood furniture is striking. Even though staining the wood can make it unique, leaving it natural can make it unique in its own way. Because it’s fairly unexpected to decorate with natural wood furniture, it will definitely make a statement.

Embrace the Rustic Look

Decorating your apartment or home with the “rustic look” is a big trend right now. The look is centered on natural elements, such as natural wood, marble, and other design elements that are inspired by the outdoors. You can easily make the unfinished furniture the focal point of the decorating scheme. From there, you can work in other design elements such as dark wood floors, marble countertops, and even polished metal.

Increased Versatility

Unfinished furniture gives you greater versatility. As your decorating scheme changes, you can always stain the furniture at a later date. Keeping the piece in its pure state when you first get it allows you to enjoy the beauty of the wood while it’s still flawless. In other words, buying unfinished furniture and keeping it that way allows you to be more versatile over the long term.

Unfinished furniture gives you a greater amount of versatility because you can choose a stain that will match the look you’re trying to go for. If you decide to leave it in its naturally state, you might want to give it a coat or two of polyurethane, which is oil based, or polyacrylic, which is water based, before you start using it. However, using both wood stain and a polyurethane or polyacrylic coating will optimize the natural beauty of the wood.

4 Tips for Furnishing a Small Bedroom

While many apartments have small bedrooms, that doesn’t mean there aren’t a lot of option. You can certainly furnish your apartment in a way that utilizes all available space while also maximizing comfort. By choosing the right furniture, you can create plenty of storage space without adding clutter. There are some beautiful pieces out there that will help you use the space you do have. Here are some ideas:

Buy a Storage Bed

IMG_2103_002__93246.1359139111.864.850With smaller bedrooms, using every inch of possible space is a great tactic. Using storage beds such as captain’s beds is a good tactic because it’s a great way to create ample storage in the room without using precious floor space. There are many types of storage beds so you’ll want to find the piece that best meets your needs. You may not need to sacrifice having a comfortable, queen sized bed if you can eliminate the need for having a dresser because the storage bed has adequate room for your belongings.

Utilize Wall Space

Even though pictures and other wall decorations can be a great way to add your personality to your bedroom, the wall is often ignored as a storage possibility. Items such as wall shelves can really go a long way in increasing the storage capabilities of your small bedroom. Wall shelves can hold things like televisions, books, and other keepsakes. If your bedroom doesn’t have enough space for a bookshelf, this can be a great option for creating storage that doesn’t take up floor space.

Get Creative With Vertical Space

Even though a small bedroom may not have a lot of floor space, there’s usually a lot of vertical space that is left unutilized. This can be done using a variety of tactics such as purchasing tall bookshelves, avoiding furniture that has a lot of width but no height, and using areas such as above the closet door to install wall-mounted cabinets. If you absolutely must use a dresser, make sure you purchase a chest, has more height than width. Closet systems are also a great way to utilize the vertical space because many of the pieces of a lot of height.

Create an Instant Closet

If your small bedroom doesn’t have a closet, it can be frustrating. Purchasing a closet system piece, however, can eliminate this frustration. While most dressers are designed to hold only folded clothes, closet systems have both drawers and rods to hang folded clothes. Even if you do have a closet, chances are pretty good that it’s fairly small. By adding a closet system instead of a dresser, you can get more mileage out of the storage space you do have.

Remember that when it comes to finding the right furniture for a small bedroom, it helps if it serves a dual purpose, as is the case with captain’s beds. Not only that, but you’ll want to use your vertical spaces whenever possible.

4 Uses for Wood Closet Systems

IMG_6320_002_1__76203.1392758561.864.850When organizing, one of the biggest difficulties you could be faced with is trying to find enough storage space in your closets. Using these built-in closets isn’t always the best solution, especially if the space is fairly small. Not only that, but these closets may not meet your needs. Closet systems can help solve this problem. Here’s how:

Add a Closet to a Small Room

Do you have a small room in your home that you would like to use as a small bedroom or for storage? If this room doesn’t have a closet of its own, or if you simply need more storage space, a closet system is the ideal solution. In this case, you’ll want to determine what you’ll be storing in the closet and then select the piece that will have the ideal combination of drawers and cabinets for your needs. Utilize any space that you have available so that you can maximize how much storage room you’ll create.

Use it for Extra Storage

Even if your room already has a closet, a closet system can help you add even more storage space. If you find that you have a larger wardrobe than your existing closet will allow, you can buy a piece that has plenty of space to hang up clothes. Most closet systems also have additional drawers and cabinets to store accessories and extra clothing. For example, many pieces are roughly the size of a standard dresser, yet are more space efficient. Consider purchasing one of these pieces instead of a dresser if you need the extra storage space. For example, if you have a large shoe or purse collection, you can buy a piece with the purpose of storing your collection.

Create a Walk-In Closet 

Is it your dream to have a walk-in closet? The good news is that a closet like this doesn’t need to be designed into the house! You can convert any room in your home into a walk-in closet by using these closet system furniture pieces. They come in a variety of sizes, which means that you can buy exactly what you need. Now, you don’t need to limit the clothes and accessories that you buy. You can find all the space you need because you’re not limiting yourself to a built in closet that’s too small for your needs.

Use it for Seasonal Storage

Do you swap out your wardrobes on a seasonal basis? If so, you can use closet furniture to store your seasonal wardrobe. These pieces fit easily in attics, basements and spare rooms. This is an especially good solution if your existing closets are too small. Now, storing items that are only used in a specific season, such as your winter coats, will be much easier.

You don’t need to limit yourself to your existing closet space. Closet systems can help you expand your possibilities.

What Type Of Wood Is Best For Your Furniture?

When it comes to buying new wood furniture, there are plenty of factors that are worthy of your consideration. More often than not, the price tag will ultimately be the deciding factor on which piece of furniture you decide to purchase. There are also other factors to that will come into play, such as the size of the furniture, the color and even the style. However, chest1__26103.1458676331.864.850one of the most important factors that goes overlooked is the type of wood that your furniture is made out of.

It’s not that customers don’t care about quality. Of course they do! But a lot of times, appearance and price are the top two factors that are considered, when quality should be right up there with price and appearance. It may look really nice, and the price might fit your budget, but if the quality is poor then you’re wasting both your time and your money. When it comes to wood furniture, customers might not know much about the kind of wood that their new furniture is made out of. Here’s some information that you might find helpful.

Pine:

Pine is a popular choice for a few reasons. For one, it’s an inexpensive wood. And two, it’s a lightweight wood that makes moving furniture around a much simpler process. Pine is also a wood that can be stained easily, as the wood takes stain coats really well. If there is any downside to pine furniture, it’s that it is a soft wood and thus it is much easier to dent or scratch. Pine would be your wood of choice if you are going for that country style look.

Cherry:

Cherry is a hardwood with a red-brown color that is high in quality. This wood can easily be shaped, which is a positive, and it also takes polish well. Its natural color is often what furniture manufacturers stick with, as it looks amazing as is. As with anything else in the world, the higher the quality, the higher the price, but that’s really the only “negative” when it comes to cherry wood. It is a little more on the expensive side, but it is absolutely worth it. Also, the wood tends to get darker over time as it ages. If you’re looking for a more transitional style of furniture or kitchen cabinets, cherry would be a great choice.

Maple:

Maple is also a hardwood, but is a much lighter color. Not only is Maple part of the hardwood family, but it is also one of the hardest woods out there. Because of its density, Maple is often the wood of choice for larger pieces of furniture like dressers and bureaus. Despite being extremely durable, Maple is also rather affordable. The same worries that you’d have in regards to dents and scratches when it comes to pine wood is not really an issue with maple. It’s also worth noting that birch is very similar to maple, as both are good for contemporary style furniture and kitchen cabinets.

Oak:

Oak is also a hardwood that has a gritty look and feel to it. There are two different kinds of oak — red oak and white oak. Much like maple wood, oak is very durable and is not as susceptible to warping, dents or scratches. Much like pine, oak wood stains very well, but it doesn’t work well with paint. Oak would be a great choice for accent pieces, such as bars, console tables, etc.

How To Clean Wood Furniture

As you may have heard by now, wood furniture is quite the worthy investment because it can last you a lifetime, but that doesn’t mean that it will stay clean for that long.

Durability should be one of the top factors in your decision-making process when you are looking to bring a new piece of furniture into your home. If durability ranks high among your list of qualifications when shopping for furniture, then it is safe to assume that you made the smart choice in purchasing a nice piece of wood furniture, instead of going with 102271__27453.1387054572.864.850a cheap, build-it-yourself collection of particleboard. Being that wood furniture is higher quality, more delicate than other furniture options, and an investment worthy of protecting, we are going to give you some tips on how to keep your furniture clean, all while protecting its surfaces and upholding its great quality.

Now, this may come as a surprise, but the first piece of advice in regards to cleaning your furniture is that less is more. The chemicals in most cleaning products could be harmful to the wood’s surface, so for varnished wood furniture, simply cleaning the surface with a little bit of water and a microfiber cloth should do the trick. The microfiber cloth is very gentle on the surface, and helps to remove any dust, hair from pets or anything else that may have unwelcomingly made its home on your wood furniture. If the wood surface is unfinished, you’re going to want to skip the application of water to the cloth and clean the surface with just a dry microfiber cloth. Using water to clean an unfinished surface can do more harm that good, including warping the smoothness to the wood’s surface. Also, when it comes to unfinished furniture, regular dusting is necessary to prevent the raw wood from darkening.

Another tip to keeping your wood surfaces in great condition is preventative care. Spills are going to happen, but as long as you clean them up quickly, then you likely will be able to avoid any permanent damage to your wood surface. Also, coasters are a wood surface’s best friend. No matter what kind of furniture we’re talking about here, if you can set a drink on it, there should be a coaster underneath it.

In addition to the preventative methods for taking care of your wood furniture, there are some tactics for preserving your furniture that often go overlooked. For example, keep your wood furniture out of the sun. Kitchen tables or bureaus by the window are at risk for damage over time, as the sun can alter fine finishes by fading them, as well as drying out the wood surface, which will cause cracks if exposed to sunlight for too long. Speaking of the placement of your wood furniture within your home, you should also remember that it is important to keep your wood furniture away from any heating units or vents that you may have in your home. The dry heat from these sources have a similar effect to what the sun can do in that it will dry out the wood, which in turn can cause cracks in the surface.

How To Paint Unfinished Hardwood Furniture

In today’s world, we live in a throwaway society. Nobody ever wants to fix anything anymore. When something breaks, we just run out and buy a brand new replacement for it. When people want to change things up around the house, they buy something completely new to take its place.

We also live in a society that is keen to saving money. Take furniture, for example. Hardwood furniture is a great long-term investment for any consumer to make, especially when the quality of the wood can last you several decades. Investing in hardwood furniture is a smart choice that will end up saving you a significant amount of money over the years. While others will be throwing money away on particleboard furniture that will only last a maximum of five years, you will have high quality hardwood furniture in your home that could last you a lifetime.

Herein lies the problem, though. While it is a tremendous value to invest in any kind of hardwood furniture due to its longevity, the problem is that the customer might not want to have the same looking furniture for an entire lifetime. That’s completely understandable, book2__07483.1458594101.864.850and there are ways to work around that so that you are getting the full lifespan of your furniture, and the full value of your initial investment, without having to commit to the same exact look of your furniture for several decades. The economical solution to achieving that new look is really simple: paint your hardwood furniture. A little “do it yourself” project might seem a little overwhelming to some, but the process behind painting unfinished wood is easier than you think.

First thing’s first, you’re going to want to protect the area that you’re painting the furniture on. Grab an old bed sheet, and lay it down on the ground to protect the surface. Now, before you start priming the furniture, you will need to determine whether or not the surface needs to be sanded first. If there are any bumps or knots on the surface of the furniture, you’re going to need to sand the surface down until it is completely smooth. Once the surface has passed the smooth test, make sure you wipe the surface down with a cloth to remove any dust or wood shavings.

When you begin the priming process, considering using a spray primer, as it will cover much more of the surface of the furniture, and it’s much easier to avoid streaks and drip marks this way. Other methods would include using a sponge brush or even just a regular paintbrush, but using a spray primer is the fastest and most effective way to apply a primer. Wait for the primer to be 100% dry before you begin painting the furniture.

For flat surfaces, use the same kind of paint-roller that you would use to paint a wall. A paintbrush also works fine here, but the paint-roller is much more effective and faster. If you’re painting a piece of furniture that is not a flat surface or has areas that are unreachable with a paint-roller, then a sponge brush or a paintbrush will be what you’ll want to go with. It’s important to make sure that the paint is being evenly distributed and in a manner that would avoid any bumps in the paint. Once the paint dries, it’s up to you to determine whether or not a second coat is necessary. But if you use a primer, more often than not, just one coat is all you will need. Good luck!

Solid Pine Bookcases Are A Worthy Investment Over Particleboard

Are you in the market for a brand new bookcase for your home or your office? The internet makes the world a much smaller place, and thus you will have plenty of options from all over the world to choose from. But while you are weighing your options on which bookcase makes the most sense for you to purchase, you should consider the following information.

Quality:

Solid pine wood is a much higher quality in comparison to the cheaper options that are book1__89592.1458593807.864.850available to you locally. Solid pine is built to last, and is a much better option than any particleboard furniture. It may cost you a few extra dollars to go the solid pine route over particleboard, but you are investing in many more years of solid and dependable furniture. How many years are we talking about? Well, there are some pine wood pieces of furniture that have lasted 100 years or even longer. When it comes to particleboard, a bookcase would last about a maximum of five years.. Pine, although softer than a wood like Oak, for example, is a far better option when it comes to quality than particleboard.

Endurance:

Solid pine is a heavy-duty wood that holds weight much better than particleboard furniture would. Pine is a natural homogeneous material, which contributes to why the wood is so strong and durable. You will be able to load your entire book collection into a solid pine bookcase without any worries of the wood weakening for many, many decades. Particleboard is a brittle material, so if the bookcase has adjustable shields, the clips for the shelves tend to fall out over time because the holes deteriorate.

Customizable:

Another positive aspect to choosing solid pine wood over particleboard furniture is the fact that pine wood is easily customizable. If you don’t like the way your new pine wood bookcase looks in your home or office, you can easily change its appearance by staining or painting the piece. You can’t make those particular changes with particleboard pieces of furniture. When it comes to particleboard furniture, if you no longer like the way that it looks, you more than likely will have to dispose of the furniture and replace it with a new piece of furniture. While pine wood may cost you more money upon your initial purchase, it will undoubtedly become a worthy investment, and save you a decent amount of money in the long run, as we can just about guarantee that pine wood will outlast any particleboard furniture piece that you buy.

Made in America:

All of Gothic Cabinet Craft’s furniture is made right here in the United States of America. So not only would you be bringing a high quality bookcase into your home, but you would be supporting local business in the process!

Tips For Protecting Wood Furniture During a Move

Moving can be stressful — that much we know — but it doesn’t have to be as stressful as most moves usually turn out to be. Here are some tips on how to protect your wood furniture during a move, and how to make packing up your old home and unpacking into your new home much easier.

When you’re moving furniture, the pieces come in all different shapes, sizes and weights. Some pieces have doors that fly open, some have detachable parts, and some have drawers that can pop open. There are several tricks that we have used to be able to work around these inconvenient aspects to moving (are there any convenient aspects to moving?) that take a lot of stress out of the process.

If you’ve researched this topic enough, you will find that a lot of folks will suggest using shrink wrap as a means to keep doors, drawers and cabinets stationary during a move. This is not an ideal method when you are moving wood furniture. The thing about wood Armoirefurniture is that it is an organic material that needs to breathe. That means no shrink wrap, and certainly no bubblewrap directly on the wood, either. The best way to wrap furniture is with specialized fabric blankets that were specifically designed for moving furniture. If you insist on using bubblewrap, make sure that the specialized fabric blankets are what comes in direct contact with the wood furniture, with the bubblewrap serving almost as an insurance policy on the outside.

If you have any furniture with handles sticking out, in which the screw is exposed on the other side of the wood, unscrew the handle or knob and then screw it back on the opposite side. This will create a smooth surface that is easier for fitting the furniture into your method of transport, and also preventing any damage on the knobs or handles during the move. A little trick we like to use when flipping the handles or knobs around is taking a piece of tape and sticking it to the inside of the drawer. This will serve as a temporary method to opening the drawers until the furniture is moved into its new home. However, be very careful when using the tape on your wood furniture. Do not let the tape come in contact with the wood on the visible part of the furniture.

And while the primary focus of the information above has been about covering wooden pieces with parts that can fly open during a move, it should be noted that you should cover every single wooden piece that you are moving, regardless of if it has any parts that could open, in order to prevent scratching. Always remember to tie down your larger pieces of wooden furniture that are susceptible to falling over, and do your best to prevent stacking anything on top of your wooden furniture during the move.

If your wood furniture has removable legs, take them off if you can. It makes for a much safer moving experience when it comes to protecting your wood furniture if you can remove the legs, and then secure some padding on the top and bottom corners of the piece.

Armoire Apartment Hacks

With closet space at a premium in small apartments, urban home owners tend to think outside of the box when it comes to organizing their homes. Whatever built-in closet space apartments have are usually used for storing clothes, linens, and bedding – which doesn’t leave much room for other odds and ends. To combat this issue, many apartment owners opt for a closet system including armoires to increase storage capacity. However, an armoire can be used for more than just storing clothing and accessories. Here are a few apartment hacks that can be used to turn your armoire into a multi-purpose storage unit.

Cleaning Cabinet
An armoire makes the perfect cleaning cabinet. You can keep a vacuum (either canister or upright) in an armoire complete with all of the accessories. Mounting hooks on the back of the closet doors allows for storage of brooms, static dust mops, and other floor cleaning items. Place a hanging shoe organizer on the hanging rod and use the pockets to store all of your cleaning solutions. You can even store laundry detergent and extra paper towels and/or toilet paper on the built in shelf. These modifications allow you to have a complete on-stop shop for all of your house cleaning needs.

3105_A_closeddoors__53946.1447357169.864.850Holiday Cabinet
If your apartment is lacking in built in storage space and you don’t have any other storage options such as access to a basement, what do you do with all of your seasonal holiday stuff? Why not make a dedicated holiday cabinet out of an armoire? Holiday lights and decorations can be neatly stacked and organized on shelves in an armoire, fragile ornaments can be tucked away in drawers, and you can even store wrapping paper and other gift items all in one place. Organizing seasonal decorations in an armoire provides you with easy access at any time, even if it isn’t the season. You can even keep some non-holiday items such as birthday wrapping paper, gift bags, and greeting cards in the same closet.

Sewing and Craft Cabinet
Are you or someone you live with a rising fashion designer? Even if this isn’t the case, a lot of people work with fabrics and other craft items. Some homeowners are lucky to have a designated sewing room in their house, however not all of us have the luxury of turning a spare bedroom into a crafter’s paradise. An armoire is a great place to store all of your crafting needs. Place yarn, thread, and other sewing accessories in drawers. Hang your fabric in the closet on a hanging rod. You can even store your sewing machine, hot glue guns, and other crafting devices in the closet.

These are just a few of the many different uses for your closet system. We’d love to hear what you have turned your external storage units into. Feel free to leave a comment below!

Autumn Has Arrived, Is Your Closet Ready?

As the last few days of summer are coming to a close, a lot of us are changing our wardrobes for the season. Especially true for autumn here on the east coast, the change in season means a dip in temperatures. We slowly but surely pack up our shorts, swimsuits, and flip-flops, and start to pull out sweaters, sweatshirts, jeans, and jackets to get ready for the cooler days ahead. With this change in outfits, is your closet ready to handle the bigger, bulkier items worn primarily in the fall? If not, it may be time to consider investing in a closet storage system.

Although many dream about having a walk-in closet filled with shelves and endless hanging racks, a lot of people do not have access to such luxury. Instead, clothes tend to spill out of overstuffed standard sized closets or sit in stacks on top of dressers and storage chests. For those who own a home, an option would be to knock down a wall and expand a closet, or install additional shelving units. However for those renting apartments, the option to remodel isn’t available. Here is where a closet system comes in handy.

Gothic Cabinet Closet SystemCloset systems can be customized to any configuration. With a closet system, you can make the storage area as large or small as you want, simply by adding and moving pieces to create a set that matches your specific needs. At Gothic Cabinet Craft, our closet systems have many different components to choose from, including:

  • Armoires
  • Chiffoniers
  • Linen Closets
  • Single Door Wardrobes
  • Drawers
  • Storage Tops

Based on what your storage needs are, you can decide how many pieces you want in your closet system. Perhaps you need an armoire, a wardrobe, and a few sets of drawers. Or perhaps you need an entire closet system complete with storage tops that sit on top of the armoires and wardrobes utilizing more vertical space. The decision is up to you in how you want your closet system set up.

The benefit of a closet system is that they can be installed along any wall in your bedroom, spare room, or even in the hallway. Over time as your needs change, you can add pieces or remove pieces to create a new storage system for your clothes and other belongings. The best part, the closet system isn’t permanent. You can move them anywhere in the house, wherever you need storage.

Instead of trying to figure out where you heavier items such as wool sweaters and hooded sweatshirts should go, consider investing in a closet storage system. Not only do closet systems help keep all of your clothes behind closed doors, but they help to utilize the vertical space in your home. You can keep items you don’t regularly need in the storage tops on top of your armoire/chiffonier while keeping the clothes you wear all the time at arm’s reach. Closet systems aren’t just for clothes either. You can store toys, books, movies, even holiday decorations safely tucked away in the storage units. The possibilities are endless.

Types of Wood Furniture Guide

717_HO__43316.1362513480.864.850When it comes to buying furniture, there are a plethora of options to choose from. Choices include the style of furniture (classic, modern, contemporary), color, and even fabric. Even if you’ve narrowed down your choices to real wood furniture, there are still a lot of variations to consider. Here are a few of the most common types of wood and materials used in wood furniture. This guide can help you decide what type of wood would best match not only your design goals but your house and budget as well.

Birch
There are different species of the birch tree, which can result in variations in wood appearance. However, generally birch wood has a creamy white hue with patterns of brown sprinkled throughout. The wood is closed pore, which allows it to be stained and finished easily. When sanded, birch presents a nice and smooth finish. As birch is a hardwood, it is less susceptible to scratches and dents which makes birch wood furniture ideal for households that have pets or small children.

Oak
Oak is one of the most widely used hardwoods on the market. It is light in color, heavy, and strong. Thanks to rings within the oak tree, oak wood has a course texture and a noticeable grain. A favorite among craft furniture makers, Oak is the most popular wood for country-style American furniture. Because the oak tree itself grows slowly and has a long life-span the oak wood is incredibly strong and durable. Furniture made from oak is very durable. Although it is porous which requires an extra coat of stain or finish, oak furniture is not only built to last, it is just as beautiful unfinished thanks to its grain.

Pine
Unlike birch and oak that are both hardwoods, pine is actually a soft wood. Because of this, pine is verily easily carved and can be molded into a variety of shapes and designs. In addition to being easy to work with, pine is lighter in comparison to the other hardwoods, which means pine furniture is easier to move – which makes pine an ideal option for those in apartments and temporary housing who need to have furniture that transports well. Pine has a nice, even grain and is easy to paint and/or finish with wood stain.

Particleboard/MDF
Particleboard and MDF are popular building materials thanks to their low price point. Particleboard is basically wood chips and other wood waste products that are glued together and formed into sheets with a hot press. MDF is made the same as particleboard (wood materials glued together), but it is much denser. Particleboard is a staple material for ultra-low cost furniture stores and big box retailers. Usually particleboard furniture comes in pieces that the owner then has to assemble. Particleboard and MDF are weak building materials compared to real wood, and easily fall apart. Investing a little bit more in real wood furniture crafted out of materials like birch, oak, and pine will give you much more life and versatility than an economy grade particleboard unit.

My First Apartment Checklist – The Living Room

Fall is a time for transitions. In addition to the temperatures slowly falling and the leaves changing colors, the fall signifies the start of a new school year. Additionally September is also a busy month for real estate turnover. Many cities have apartments that start new leases on September 1st. For many college students, September 1st marks the start of their independent lives by moving into their very first off-campus apartments.

The moving process alone can be crazy. Follow this First Apartment Checklist to make sure you have everything you need for your first place. We’ll start with the living room.

ccrbookcase__54628.1447786019.864.850Bookcases
Besides holding books, CDs, DVDs, and decorative items, bookcases also work to break up a room. For those living in a studio apartment that only has one giant room or an apartment with an open layout, bookcases can be used as room dividers. Adding a finished back to a bookcase allows you to set up the unit to separate the living area from the dining area of the office/study area from the living area. Plus, bookcases take advantage of vertical space, which helps maximize storage in the apartment.

Sofa or Futon
Besides the bed and the office chair, living room furniture gets an awful lot of use. From casually lounging and reading a book to having friends over for video game nights, the couch or sofa gets a lot of use. Because of the high traffic in the living room, you’ll want to make sure that your couch is made of quality materials and can withstand repetitive use. A lot of first time apartment owners will opt for a futon or a pull-out couch that converts into a bed for guests. Without the luxury of having an extra guest bedroom, the living room can serve as sleeping quarters for friends from out of town or mom and dad when they come to visit.

End Table
A living room set isn’t complete without a few end tables. Not only do end tables provide a space to place lamps for lighting, they provide a variety of storage options. End tables can hold magazines, remotes for electronics, and books. They are also a surface to rest drinks on when spending time in the living room.  Some end tables have drawers that can keep items such as stationary, pens, and batteries within arm’s reach, but hidden from plain sight.

Coffee Table
If your apartment is lucky enough to have a decent amount of floor space in the living area, a coffee table is definitely worth the investment. Not only do coffee tables provide a surface to hold drinks and magazines, but they can also serve as a focal point for entertaining. You can spread puzzles, board games, and card games across the table and play with multiple people sitting on all sides of the table. Or if the apartment doesn’t come with a specific dining area, the coffee table can be used as the communal eating area too. A coffee table will come in handy on Friday nights when you and the roommates decide to order take-out and rent a movie.

Back–To–School Furniture Essentials

Fall is almost here, so now is the time that many students are gearing up to head back to campus. Many upperclassmen move off-campus and into their first apartments. So in addition to purchasing pens, notebooks, and paper, they are buying their first pieces of furniture. Here are some of the must-have essentials for student apartment living.

Bookcases

The word student and book are synonymous with one another. Over the course of a semester, a student may have to read and reference dozens of books for multiple classes. The best way to keep books organized is to buy a bookcase. Bookcases come in many different sizes with options from two shelves to six or more. Some come with doors for hidden storage and others have adjustable shelves to accommodate large volumes or small paperbacks.

Bookcases can be used to store more than just books. The deep shelves are also great for storing DVDs, CDs, or even knick-knacks.  The shelves can also hold non-perishable snack items for snacking during study sessions. Students can designate certain shelves for certain items which turns a standard bookcase into a multi-purpose storage unit.

Desks

Living off campus in an apartment may afford a little more space than a dorm room, but living quarters still tend to be pretty cramped. Students need a work area to complete homework and other assignments, so the best way to build a work space in a small room is to build up. This is where a desk and hutch set comes in handy.

IMG_4276_001__31592.1370378746.864.850By taking advantage of the vertical space in the apartment, students can create a complete home office area in just one corner of a room. The shelves in the hutch are great for holding books, binders, printer paper, and other office supplies. Most desks also have additional storage drawers that can be used to organize files or store items out of sight. Many sets can be separated into a desk and hutch section, so after graduating from school, the desk can be transformed to accommodate new functions.

Beds

After a long day of studying (and a long night of partying) students need a good, solid bed to catch some shut-eye. For student apartments, a storage bed is a great investment. A real wood storage bed offers impeccable mattress support while providing tons of built in storage. Storage drawers under the bed are great for holding extra sheets, blankets, and towels. Some units even come with doors to store larger, bulkier items.

In a student apartment, space is limited. Plus sharing an apartment with roommates means that common storage areas are limited as well. Storage beds utilize space under the bed, that otherwise may go untouched, to keep personal items stored behind closed doors and off of the floor. If a storage bed isn’t your forte, you can always opt for a real wood platform bed. This type of bed still provides adequate access underneath the bed to place storage baskets or special “under-the-bed” storage boxes but gives the bedroom a traditional look and feel.

Visit Our New Stores: King’s Plaza and Riverhead

Gothic Cabinet Craft is happy to announce the opening of two brand new Gothic locations in Brooklyn and in Riverhead. The expansion of Gothic with these two new stores makes Gothic Cabinet Craft one of the largest chains of furniture stores in the New York City area with almost 30 different locations. Aristidis Zaharopoulos, President of Gothic Cabinet Craft is ecstatic about the opening of the two new locations. “Our new stores solidify Gothic Cabinet Craft’s place as the premier manufacturer of unfinished, real wood furniture on the East Coast.”

Flatbush Avenue at King’s Plaza
Gothic Cabinet Craft’s newest location in Brooklyn is actually the chain’s second location on the famed Flatbush Avenue. The new store, located at 2494 Flatbush Avenue, is located across from the Kings Plaza Shopping Center. The King’s Plaza location is Gothic Cabinet’s Brooklyn flagship store and is one of the largest stores of the almost 30 Gothic Cabinet Craft locations. In addition to having one of the largest selections of Gothic Cabinet Craft’s real wood furniture, the store is also a custom design center.

Getting to the newest store couldn’t be easier. The new Gothic Cabinet Craft location is just minutes from the Belt Parkway, exit 11 N. Additionally, the B2, B9, B41, B46 buses all stop at a terminal right on Flatbush Avenue by the Plaza.

Riverhead Store Showroom

Riverhead, Long Island
The new Riverhead store on Long Island is actually Gothic’s 6th location on the island. Located at 1076 Old Country Rd in Riverhead, NY, the store is a prime location for Gothic Cabinet Craft customers who are looking to furnish vacation homes out on the island. Long Island customers can visit the store with ease as it is conveniently located right off of I-495. The Riverhead location is a custom design center where customers can work with a Gothic design expert to create furniture that matches their needs, styles, and budget.

Zaharopoulos says that “It has been a difficult 5 years, but Gothic has not given up on manufacturing real wood furniture in New York City. Unlike our competitors, we have not moved our operations from the United States for less expensive sourcing alternatives. We are committed to remaining true to our identity as a local furniture manufacturer.” Since opening its doors in 1969, Gothic Cabinet Craft has been committed to serving the Greater New York City metropolitan area. All Gothic furniture is built in New York, and the stores not only deliver locally, but can ship across the United States.

Home Office in Small Spaces: Build Up

Technological advances over the past few decades have made it incredibly easy for employees to work remotely from the privacy of their own homes. Many employees who telecommute have a separate office set up in their homes either by converting a second bedroom or small room into a work area complete with a desk and file storage units. However, for those who are urban city dwellers, space is scarce which makes it very difficult to set up a home office. When it comes to setting up a home office in a small space, the trick is to build up, not out. By utilizing your vertical space, you can create a nice comfortable area for working from home. Here are a few tips on how to do so.

Desk and Hutch Combinations
Abbott_Ridge_Youth_Bedroom_816253672_277_YBR_SET85_b__67167.1357589801.864.850A desk and hutch combination is an all-inclusive workspace solution for small spaces. There are a variety of options when it comes to choosing a desk. Some offer pull-out trays for keyboards, others have pencil drawers for stationary. Many of these desks come with file drawers where you can organize work and other important documents. The hutch that sits on top of the desk is ideal for holding books, copy paper, and software discs. You can add baskets to hold miscellaneous items or store decorative items on the shelves to add a little flair to the workspace. The hutch utilizes wall space, but unlike shelving, is a temporary solution. Should you decide to redesign your work area or relocate your desk, the hutch can be removed from the desk to be easily reconfigured.

Secretary Desks and Armoires
If you are the type of person who takes the “out of sight, out of mind” approach, a workstation with a door may just be the solution you need for your home office. A secretary desk is a great alternative to a traditional desk. The base of a secretary desk is a chest of drawers on top of which sits a hutch with a door that when pulled down turns into a writing surface. What is nice about a secretary desk is that when you are finished working, you can close the door to the desk, which creates a nice separation of work from your home. Whenever you need to go back to “office mode” you simply pull down the door to the desk. A secretary desk gives you a complete work station in a compact space.

For work-related storage needs, you can set up an armoire in your home office.  The armoire can be configured to hold files and office supplies. The insides of the doors are perfect for adding bulletin boards and a calendar to keep your tasks organized. When you are finished working, you can close the doors to the armoire keeping all of your work related items out of your living space. An armoire is a nice alternative to traditional shelving units and is especially ideal for apartment dwellers that can’t make adjustments to the original construction as they utilize vertical wall space without having to install hardware for shelving right into the wall.

Introducing the New York City Bedroom Sets

IMG_52191_001__63225.1369761125.864.850Gothic Cabinet Craft is proud to announce the newest addition to the Gothic Cabinet catalog, the New York City Bedroom Sets. These five new bedroom sets have been designed specifically with the needs of urban dwellers in mind. The sets feature better storage options and have more of a contemporary look than the rest of Gothic Cabinet Craft’s line of furniture.

Each set is named after well-known New York City neighborhoods in honor of the city where Gothic Cabinet Craft has called home since 1969. President, Aristidis Zaharopoulos, says that “We are honoring our home city of New York by naming the new bedroom sets after historic neighborhoods across the city.” Gothic prides itself on their commitment to quality, real wood furniture that is built locally but sold nationally. According to Zaharopoulos, “We have been in business here for over forty years, and all of our furniture is built right here in the city.”

New York is a city with neighborhoods that are as diverse as the people who call New York City home. Each set has its own flair and array of storage options that are perfect for modern-day apartment living.

The Five New Gothic Cabinet Bedroom Sets include:

Gramercy – named after the famous Gramercy Park and neighborhood.

The Gramercy set is built out of real wood birch and features a platform bed with up to 4 drawers, a headboard, nightstand with 2 drawers, a 6 drawer chest, a 8 drawer dresser, and a mirror.

Soho – the venerable “South of Houston Street” neighborhood home to a vibrant arts community as well as a collection of shops and boutiques.

The Soho bedroom set is constructed out of solid and real wood birch and includes a platform storage bed with 8 drawers and 2 doors, headboard, nightstand with 1 drawer, a 6 drawer chest, an 8 drawer dresser, and a mirror.

Cobble Hill – named for the Cobble Hill Historic District in Brooklyn.

The Cobble Hill is a solid pine bedroom set that comes with a platform bed with up to 4 drawers, a headboard, nightstand with 3 drawers, a 6 drawer chest, a 9 drawer dresser, and a mirror.

Red Hook – named after the Red Hook neighborhood of Brooklyn, famous for its red clay soil and proximity to the Upper New York Bay.

Made out of beautiful red oak, the Red Hook set comes with a double storage platform bed with up to 8 drawers, bookcase headboard, nightstand with 1 drawer, chest with 7 drawers, a 9 drawer dresser, and a mirror.

Douglaston –home to Douglaston Hill, a historical district in the Queens Borough of New York City.

A real wood birch bedroom set, the Douglaston features a platform bed, nightstand with 2 drawers, a chest with 6 drawers, a dresser with 8 drawers, and a mirror.

All of the new sets are built with real wood and have been specially constructed so that the nail holes are not visible.  All the drawers feature metal glides for ease of use.  In addition to their sleek design, the sets are available in natural wood or can be finished in a choice of twenty colors.

View these as well as many other bedroom sets available from Gothic Cabinet Craft here, or swing by your local Gothic  Cabinet Craft store.

4 Different Uses for a Bookcase

Bookcases are very versatile furniture. Like the name implies, bookcases are primarily used to hold and/or display books. Many homeowners also use bookcases to store DVDs, CDs, and Vinyl Records as well as a way to show off decorative items. However a bookcase can be used for more than just media storage. With some creative thinking and a DIY attitude, a bookcase can be reconfigured in many different ways. Here are four different ways you can use a bookcase.

Cover Up
GK41D__04399.1420040001.864.850A bookcase is the perfect object to cover up a wall that is a little worse for wear. Perhaps you live in an apartment that has a “no paint” policy, but one of the walls has some discoloration. Or perhaps there is a small dent in the wall or even a hole left over from a light fixture that used to be installed there. Rather than spending money on repairing and repainting the wall, you can use a bookcase to cover up the spot. Bookcases come in all shapes and sizes, so you are bound to find one that is tall or wide enough to cover up the mark on the wall.  The benefit here is that this quick fix isn’t permanent. You can always move and re-purpose the unit if you decide to repaint the whole room.

Closet Organizer
You can use a bookcase as a way to organize a walk in closet. You can add wicker or fabric baskets to the shelves to hold shoes or small items such as socks, scarves, and gloves. Or you can fold sweaters and sweatshirts and stack them neatly on the shelves. A solid wood unit is even sturdy enough to hold multiple pairs of jeans. Is there a room in your home that has a small alcove you don’t know what to do with? Turn it into a makeshift closet! You can stack items on the shelf, and install a few small hooks for items that need to be hung.

Desk
A pair of small bookcases can double as a fantastic desk. You can take two or three shelf bookcases and lay a board across the top to create a workspace.  The bookcases play two roles here. They act as the “legs” of the desk, but also double as storage. You can keep office supplies, software, and printer paper neatly organized on the shelves. Plus with the open shelve design of the bookcases; you can keep an eye on when you are running low on items.

Room Divider
A bookcase can also double as a room divider. Large open spaces are easily broken up into separate “sections” by placing a bookcase perpendicular to a wall. When using a bookcase as a room divider, you will have to take one extra step to make sure you have a finished back for the unit. A bookcase room divider is ideal for studio apartment owners who want to break up the large room into smaller sections, and add a little bit more privacy. It is also ideal for large family rooms that want to set up a separate area to watch televisions from the area where the kids play.

Why Choose Solid Wood Furniture?

Furnishing your home these days is relatively easy. You can find furniture at most general merchandisers, department stores, big box furniture stores, specialty retailers, and (one of the easiest options) the internet. With so many choices, it’s hard to decide what type of furniture you are going to bring into your home. Before you make your final purchasing decision, make sure that you check out furniture that is crafted out of solid wood. Solid wood furniture has many benefits, and here are just a few of them.

Durable

bed__89756.1438289943.864.850Buying a bed, night stand, or bookcase from a major discount chain or one of those big box discount furniture stores may seem like a good idea due to the lower priced items. However with cheap furniture, you also get cheap materials. The majority of these types of furniture are constructed out of particleboard, which is basically tiny bits of wood glued together in board form, and then covered in a laminate finish to give it a unified look.

Particle board falls apart very easily, and over time the laminate can start to chip off exposing the wood panel underneath. Sometimes, joints become separated or drawers fall out because of repeated use. Particle board furniture is not meant to last long. If you are in the market for furnishing that are going to last you a while, solid wood is the route you’ll want to take.

Some Assembly Not Required

Most of the time when you order solid wood furniture, it comes preassembled. Gone are the days of lugging home multiple cardboard boxes, deciphering instructions that sometimes aren’t even in plain English, and using super glue and extra nails because you couldn’t get the parts to fit just right. Instead, a solid wood desk, bookcase, or dresser can be brought into your home, already built, with factory approved joints that are guaranteed not to fall apart.

Changeable Finishes

When you purchase a solid wood furniture piece, you are making an investment that will last you a long time. Five or ten years after your purchase your furniture, it will be in great shape. However, you may have outgrown the color scheme or want to go in a different direction style-wise. With solid wood furniture, you can easily have the unit refinished and repainted to match your home’s décor. You can even get new drawer pulls and accessories to change the look of the piece entirely. Don’t buy brand new furniture, when you can add a few new touches to give your older furniture a whole new look.

3 Advantages of a Loft Bed

Unlike a bunk bed which features one bed over another, a loft bed is a bunk bed that only has the top bunk, which leaves a wide open space underneath. A loft bed is ideal for small spaces or for rooms that sleep more than one person. In fact, a lot of college dorms offer lofted beds to provide extra storage underneath which maximizes the space in the tiny rooms. Here are 3 advantages to having a loft bed in your own home.

Ideal for Shared Kids Rooms

Loft beds are great for children’s bedrooms that have double (or even triple) occupancy. With the bed lofted up top, the space underneath becomes an oasis for the bed owner. The floor can be lined with pillows and blankets to create a special area for reading or playing with toys. For a girl’s room, you can drape fabrics to create a “princess” area where your daughter can play with her dolls and stuffed animals as well as invite friends over to play in the “palace.”

For a boy’s room, you can turn the area into a place to make buildings with building blocks or racetracks for Matchbox cars. Or you can hang fabric and other decorative items to turn the space into a “pirate ship.” The opportunities are endless. The best part about the lofted beds is that it creates a designated area specifically for one child. This is very important in cases where the bedroom is shared with other siblings. With a loft bed, a child has a sense that their toys and belongings are safe in their space.

Frees Up Space

Instead of transforming the space underneath the bed into a play area, you can utilize the area for storage. Dressers and chests of drawers fit neatly underneath a loft bed and so can bookcases as well as vanities or toy boxes. Moving these items underneath the bed frees up more space in the room which can then be used as an open play area, or to host multiple sleeping bags during slumber parties. Or you can put a futon or daybed underneath which can be used as a sitting area, and then double as a guest bed.

Transitions As Your Children Get Older

If you invest in a loft bed, you can relax knowing that as your child grows, the bed can transition with them. Teens can create a study area underneath the bed. Placing a bookcase or two underneath the bed along with a desk and a computer can transform the bed into a study nook. The best part about having the bed lofted is it discourages studying or doing homework in bed, which can actually disrupt sleep patterns. With a loft bed, your child can separate their work space from their sleep space.

On the other hand, if your child wants a bigger bed in their room, you can keep the loft bed and place a larger bed underneath the loft. This way your child has a spare bed to host guests, that doesn’t take up a lot of space as it is lofted above.

These are just a few of the many advantages of owning a loft bed. To view our selection of loft beds, visit us online at http://www.gothiccabinetcraft.com/.

Furniture and Toy Storage

Children love their toys. They also love to leave them all over the place no matter how hard parents try to contain them! In a household with kids, you’ll probably be able to find toys in bedrooms, living rooms, the kitchen, and even the hallway. More than a few parents have gone on a last-minute hunt for a missing stuffed animal before bedtime. With better toy storage solutions urban families might be better able to keep the toys organized and accounted for. Here are a few different ideas of how certain furniture pieces can double as a toy storage unit:

Storage Chests
GK16__99956.1419886095.864.850A storage chest is a perfect solution for storing toys. The extra deep chests allow you to store toys, games, puzzles, stuffed animals, and even arts and craft items out of sight. A storage chest in a child’s bedroom can also double as a window seat or workbench. You can center the chest in front of a window and place a cushion on top which provides a nice place for kids to sit and read.

You can also consider getting a solid wood storage chest for the living room. You can utilize the top of the chest as extra sitting, or it can double as a nice coffee table. This way you can have a place to put beverages, television remotes, and even magazines. If you are expecting company, simply open the chest, put away any toys left in the living room, and you’ll have a “grown-up” living room for the evening.

Bookcases
A bookcase can double as a place to store toys that your children play with on a regular basis. Plush animals, remote control cars, and games and puzzles can be stored on the shelves so they are easily accessible, but off of the floor. You can opt for shorter bookcases (three shelves for instance) that are more “kid sized” so they can easily get to their favorite toys. There are even bookcases with doors that can be used to keep the toys out of sight. The nice thing about using bookcases for toy storage is they can be modified as your children get older. Bookcases can hold video games, movies on DVD, and of course books. If your child decides that he or she doesn’t want the bookcase in their room anymore, you can move it to another room and use it to store your own books and other decorative items.

Storage Cubes
A storage cube is a minimalist style storage solution. Storage cubes consist of fully interchangeable, stacked components that can be combined in many different ways to create a storage unit that fits your specific needs. The cubbies are an ideal place to store toys and games. Like a bookcase, storage cubes help keep toys off of the floor but are still easily accessible. The cubbies in storage cubes are very deep so you can store a lot of items in a confined space. Plus, all storage cubes can be painted in different colors to add a little fun to the room.

Later down the road, you can reuse these cubes to hold vinyl records, books, photos, and other items. The shorter storage cubes can also double as coffee tables or end tables with built-in storage. You can also hang the cubes on the wall to create more shelving or be used in a mudroom to store shoes, boots, and other outdoor items.

Storage Beds
A captain’s bed or a storage bed both offer drawers underneath the mattress to store clothes, sheets, and other items. In a child’s bedroom, these drawers are a great place to store toys. These drawers are on floor level which provides easy access for your child’s toys, and make cleaning up the room a breeze. Gothic’s storage beds also come with an option of doors that run the depth of the bed, which provides a storage space for larger items such as kids ski’s, skateboards, and baseball bats.  You can also opt for a bookcase headboard that besides holding books, can provide a home for stuffed animals, security blankets, and other comfort items for sleep.

The Advantages of Owning a Storage Bed

Storage beds are typically a platform bed with built in storage underneath. They come with different options including a set of drawers, doors, or even a bookcase headboard. A storage bed is a great investment for any home and provides extra storage space to keep items out of sight (and hopefully off the bedroom floor). Here are a few advantages for owning a storage bed.

Utilizing Forgotten Storage Space

IMG_2291_001__68340.1459268990.864.850The space underneath your bed can be used for a variety of purposes. Items can be stored underneath or the family cat or dog may claim it as a sleeping spot; but usually what ends up happening is that under the bed becomes a cave of lost items and dust bunnies. If you are storing items underneath the bed, you most likely have to get on your hands and knees, or lie on your stomach to reach everything you have hiding under there. Storage beds eliminate this problem. They have drawers which allow you to easily access items, and because the base is closed off, you don’t have to worry about dust and dirt building up underneath.

Optimizing Small Spaces

Not all bedrooms are built equally. Especially if you are living in a major metropolitan area like New York City, the room you sleep in may in fact be what others consider a “walk in closet.” Some bedrooms have just enough room for a bed, a night stand, and maybe a dresser, and that’s it. A storage bed is an ideal piece of furniture for this type of room. A storage bed with up to twelve drawers can double as a dresser, which can free up extra space in the room. Instead of where you would normally put a chest of drawers, you can have a vanity or a desk as your clothes are neatly stored away below your mattress.

Great for Kids Rooms

Around the age of 12 or 13, your child may have outgrown their childhood bed. As much fun as it was sleeping in a either a race car or a princess bed, your child may want to change up his or her entire bedroom to reflect their age and style. Storage beds are a great choice for older kids and teenagers as they provide ample storage for clothes and toys. If you are redoing the entire bedroom you can buy a storage bed with matching nightstand, dresser, and sometimes even a bookcase headboard. A bookcase headboard is great for storing not only books, but sentimental items and an alarm clock as well.

Guest Room Double Duty

Do you have a guest room? Why not set up your guest sleeping room with a storage bed. The drawers underneath can be used to store extra sheets and towels that your guests can easily access. Or you can store seasonal items here and store your sweaters in the summer and your swimwear in the winter here so you have more room in your closets and dressers for items you are currently using. A storage bed is also an economical choice for a guest room as most storage beds are platform beds, and don’t require having to purchase a box spring to support the mattress.

How To Protect Your Home (and Furniture) from Bed Bugs

__65055.1437242949.864.850In recent years bed bug infestations have been on the rise, especially in large metropolitan areas such as New York City. Outside of affecting apartments and hotels, bed bugs have been found in movie theaters and even clothing stores! As a local business serving the New York City area specializing in home furnishings, it is Gothic Cabinet Craft’s commitment to ensure that we provide our customers with the best products possible. This is why we have provided a few steps to protect your home and it’s furnishings from these pesky little critters.

Bed bugs, What To Look For

Bed bugs are small insects whose diets consist mostly of human blood. Young, newly hatched bed bugs are slightly transparent whereas adult bed bugs are flat and have red, oval shaped bodies. Before you go on a bed bug fumigation spree, it is important to note that they can be confused with other household insects such as carpet and spider beetles.

Signifiers of bed bugs include blood stains, bed bug droppings, and eggs. These are prevalent on mattress seams, sheets, pillow cases, headboards, and upholstered furniture. Bed bugs also like to hide out in crevices and cracks in furniture as well as along baseboards. They especially like to congregate around mattresses, bed frames, and headboards as their human food sources spend a decent amount of time in bed, sleeping.

What To Do If You Have Bed Bugs

Wash all items that show bed bug stains in hot water and dry on high for at least 20 minutes. Run a hair dryer over the mattress. Holding the hairdryer on a spot for 30 seconds is enough to kill bed bugs. Once you have blow-dried the mattress, vacuum the mattress thoroughly. You should also vacuum carpets and floors, as well as bed frames, furniture, and cracks and crevices. Be sure to dispose of the vacuum bag or empty the canister outside of the house.  Once you have cleaned the infected mattress, enclose in a plastic cover specifically for bed bugs and keep the mattress wrapped for at least a year.

How To Prevent Bed Bugs

Buying new furniture is a good way to reduce the chances of buying furniture infested with bed bugs over used or thrift store furniture. Also, purchasing furniture that is made in the US is another good way to avoid pests as foreign production policies are not as stringent as domestic policies. Plus domestically produced furniture has more oversight during the manufacturing process, to ensure quality control.

There are steps you can take to prevent bed bugs from entering your home. Simple steps such as thoroughly washing clothing after traveling and regularly washing and changing bed sheets can help keep bed bugs away. You can also purchase a Bed Bug Protection Kit in our stores. These kits include a mattress encasement that is bed bug entry and escape proof on all six sides, and also bite proof on the top. Another thing to note is that furniture made out of solid wood is less susceptible to bed bugs as solid wood furnishings have few cracks and spaces (compared to plywood and particle board items) where bed bugs like to hide.

These suggestions are good ways to keep your home free of bed bugs. However, in some cases it may be necessary to call in the experts. If you are experiencing an out of control bed bug situation, contact a pest control specialist.

Gothic Cabinet Craft teams up with NYC Housing Authority to help Sandy victims.

Gothic Cabinet Craft teams up with NYC Housing Authority to help Sandy victims.

New York, NY – The NYC Housing Authority has organized a relief effort to help displaced people with temporary housing in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. In their efforts to restore a sense of home and stability for many people, the NYC Housing Authority contacted Gothic Cabinet Craft to lend a hand. Without hesitation, Gothic Cabinet Craft donated beds, mattresses, cribs, mirrors, and other various pieces of furniture to assist in the furnishing of these temporary homes.
This is not the first time Gothic and the NYC Housing Authority have worked together. Currently, Gothic is a vendor for a program operated by the NYC Housing Authority called the “Wizard’s Corner”. The program provides New York City children with a home office comprised of a desk and chair set. The desk set is sourced from Gothic Cabinet Craft. The program’s goal is to provide children with a home work space to help stimulate learning.

“Gothic Cabinet Craft was born in NYC. This is our home and we are greatly saddened by the loss our fellow citizens have suffered. The least we can do is donate some furniture. We are proud that the NYC Housing authority contacted us to help and for making us their partner in the Wizard’s program” says president of Gothic Cabinet Craft, Aristidis Zaharopoulos.

When it’s time to rebuild, rebuild within and think local.

We, at Gothic Cabinet Craft, would like to express our deepest concerns for the many families affected by Hurricane Sandy. The devastation may seem daunting, but it’s nothing that we as a city can’t get through together. New Yorkers are pretty resilient, and that’s why it’s going to take more than a hurricane to keep us from closing our doors.
We make furniture locally. That’s what we do.We’re very lucky that production wasn’t totally affected by the storm. Our factory is stocked with beds and mattresses for immediate delivery to the five boroughs. We want to help the way we know best, and that’s by providing quality furniture immediately and at affordable prices to New Yorkers in need.

 

When it’s time to rebuild what was lost, think local, think Gothic Cabinet Craft.

 

 

 

Turn Your Living Room into a Sports Bar!

Maybe not as permanent change, but wouldn’t it be great if you could make your living room the go-to-destination for the next big sports night with your buddies? Believe it or not, turning your living room into a sports bar isn’t all that hard provided you have the right furniture (and some very understanding roommates for the night). If you are looking to host a party the next time a big game is on, make sure your living room is ready to handle the crowds!

1. Add a bar.
3078_3079_3080_3078_b__26600.1433519797.200.200What would a sports bar be without an actual bar! A classic solid wood bar is perfect for entertaining guests. A great bar stores bottles, glasses and serving ware (pitchers, platters, etc) of just about any size so you’ll always have what you need close at hand. If you need help selling the idea of adding a bar to you roommates or significant other, just point out what a great help it will be during your next dinner party (a perfect buffet top!) and how extra much storage it provides.

If you really want to show your team spirit, you can buy an unfinished wood bar and paint it in your team’s colors or paint the logo right on the front of your bar! You’ll be the biggest super fan in the neighborhood.

2. Get comfy with the couches.
Since you probably don’t have room for a big leather booth in the middle of your living room, make do with the next best option and opt for a big, comfy couch. Dark leather is obviously the traditional choice for sports bar seating, but a dark microfiber sofa is just as comfy and luxurious, but really easy to clean in case your guests start celebrating the game winning homerun or touchdown and snacks and beer go flying.

3. Make your TV the focal point.
Let’s be honest, even without a bar a sports bar would still be a sports bar provided it had a dozen flat screen TVs carefully positioned around the room. To really make your living room feel like a sports bar you’ve got to make your TV the center of attention. If you can’t hang your TV on the wall, a tall entertainment center is just the thing to make sure everyone can watch the game. You can keep your sound system, stereo equipment, HD receiver and other sports bar essentials hidden in the entertainment center as well.

The best part of a living room sports bar is that all three of these furniture pieces can work with your everyday life! You may not have an extra room or basement that you can turn into your sports den, but that doesn’t mean you can’t bring a little stadium feel to your living room.

4 First Apartment Furniture Must Haves

Moving into your first apartment? While the possibilities may seem endless, there are a few furniture bases you need to make sure are covered before moving day. Before you start deciding where the tiki bar is going to fit, make sure you have these four first apartment furniture must haves ready to go. Everything else can come in the second moving truck!

1. Sleeper sofa
P252-CM2913-Coronado__51344.1296579482.864.850Is it a sofa? Is it a bed? It’s the best of both worlds! A sleeper sofa (aka pull out bed) is a great choice for your first apartment’s couch. Obviously if you ever plan on having guests over, (or even just want to watch TV comfortably by yourself!) a good couch for your living room is a must have. What makes a sleeper sofa so great is that you don’t have to worry about where your guests (friends, family or otherwise) are going to spend the night. It’s double duty furniture! Sleeper sofas are also great if your first apartment happens to be a studio, which means that you living and sleeping area in one and the same.

2. Drop leaf table
Drop leaf tables are versatile and great for smaller spaces and eat-in kitchens. They can be pretty compact, making them a great choice for narrow kitchens so common in first apartments, but if you ever want to have a few friends over for dinner they open right up and provide plenty of additional table space! You could even pull your drop leaf table into your living room to give everyone a little bit more elbow room. Drop leaf tables also work great under windows or in hallways.

3. Ottomans
An ottoman may not be high on the top of most first apartment furniture lists, but it should be! Ottomans really are the jack of all trades in the furniture kingdom. Not only do they work great as coffee tables, they can also provide a little extra storage! Ottomans are a great place to store extra blankets, pillows or other non-essentials. Ottomans can also be turned into a seating option when necessary, meaning you can invite even more people over for dinner!

4. Bookshelf
Even if you don’t have a lot of books, a good bookshelf is a first apartment essential. Store your DVDs and CDs, magazines, photo albums and framed pictures, paperwork, decorative trinkets and more! You can even get a bookshelf that is deep enough to hold several cardboard boxes as everyone first apartment owner needs more storage space!

How big your first apartment is will have a dramatic impact on the kind of furniture you get to buy. Make sure you have everything you need, and that it all fits, before you start buying the fun pieces.

3 Alternatives to the Traditional Home Office Desk

Not every telecommuter is lucky enough to have a spare room where they can easily fit an executive-sized home office desk. While we may all dream of having that much space to spread out and work, the truth is most of us are limited on floor space. So what’s a telecommuter to do? You can’t very well work from the kitchen table! However, Just because you can’t fit a boardroom in your home office that doesn’t mean you can’t have a great, albeit sometimes nontraditional, home office desk.

Secretary Desks
One of the best things to do when you work from home is create a distinct separation between your work and personal space. It’s all together too easy to let work intrude on your personal life (or vice versa) when you don’t have a physical office to shut the door on at the end of the day. So instead of shutting the office door why not close up your desk itself! A secretary desk is great for telecommuters that need to fit their home office desk in their living room or bedroom. The drop leaf desk means you can lock your work mess up at the end of the night and keep it from taking over your home space.

Computer Carts
Instead of a full computer desk that crowds your limited home office space, why not opt for a smaller (yet more agile and portable) computer cart? This simple home office desk alternative often comes on casters, so you can easily maneuver it around your home as needed. Bring it out at the beginning of the work day and set up you mobile home office in front of the windows or even on the patio if the weather is nice enough (and you have enough extension cords). At the end the day you can slide it back into the corner or tuck it inside an extra closet.

Freestanding desks.
Take advantage of long (albeit narrow) spaces in your home or apartment and create a free standing desk that screws right into your walls. A long and decently wide shelf can easily serve as a home office desk. If you need more storage space than build up with hutches or a few extra freestanding shelves. You can also get a few filing cabinets and tuck them under your freestanding desk so they don’t take up any limited floor space.

For telecommuters that spend 8+ hours a day at their home office desk, it’s important you have enough space to do your work yet still fit into the physical floor space you have to work with. Sometimes traditional home office desks aren’t the best solution. All it takes is a little creativity (and a measuring tape!) to come up with the perfect home office desk setup.

4 Ideas for Better Small Bedroom Storage

Our bedrooms, no matter how small, should be comfortable and cozy. Unfortunately, sometimes comfortable and cozy can mean we need a lot of stuff! Many apartment dwellers fins themselves dealing with a lot of stuff, but not nearly enough space to store it all. There is no need to banish your extra quilts and favorite chatskis to the back of your closet or bury them in basement storage. Nor do you need to be tripping over boxes and bags scattered over the floor. Instead, here are 4 ideas of better small bedroom storage:

1. Under-the-bed storage containers.
As long as your bed is off the floor, chances are you’ll be able to find a storage bin short enough to fit underneath it. Even basic metals frames give you a few extra inches of storage space to work with. Or, you could always invest in a storage bed, which has the under-the-bed storage features (both drawers and doors) built right in! Storage beds are a great option for small bedrooms if you’re extra short on floor space, as they can double for dressers.

2. Ditch the bedside table for bookcase headboards.
Instead of a bedside table, or two if you need a “his and hers,” add a bookcase headboard. You can opt for one or several shelves, depending on your storage needs.  If you didn’t mind losing a few of the bottom shelves, you could even turn actual bookcases into the headboard for extra height (great if you have tall ceilings!) and small bedroom storage space.

closet_single__68017.1392759543.864.8503. Take advantage of existing closet space.
Before investing in a large dresser or armoire that is going to eat up your limited floor space, make sure you are using your closet (should you be lucky enough to have one) to its full advantage. Can you add a second bar to get two levels of hanging space? Can you fit a small dresser inside of the closet so it doesn’t take up floor space? Any chance you could add a shelf or two for shoe boxes and off season clothes? Sometimes the best small bedroom storage solutions are already in place, they just need to be tweaked a little!

If you don’t have a closet, consider getting a free standing closet system, which gives you both drawers and hanging space. It will take up some floor space, but you can always start with the most basic system and add new compartments when you upgrade to a bigger bedroom!

4. Store it higher.
Free hanging shelves and wall units are a great small bedroom storage solution, especially if you have a lot of height to work with. Imagine building one giant shelf that went all the way around your bedroom! You could invest in a few fun colored or patterned storage bins and turn your small bedroom storage into décor! Free standing shelves and wall units can help get everything off your floor, but, as opposed to storing it in the attic or basement, keep it easily accessible.

4 Tips for Furnishing a Small Living Room

Having a small living room is a fact of life for many apartment dwellers. And while it may not matter when you’re the only one home, for people that like to entertain (or are starting a family) a small living room can be incredibly frustrating! How do you fit enough seating in your small living room without making it feel cramped and crowded? Where are you supposed to store all your stuff if you don’t have the space? If you are trying to furnish a small living room, here are four tips to ensure you are maximizing what little space you have to work with:

ottoman__78536.1446043952.864.8501. Ottomans are good choices for seating and storage.
An ottoman that doubles as a coffee table helps you maximize your small living room’s floor space without having to sacrifice storage. Some ottoman sets even break apart so you can have a small coffee table and extra seating at the same time and are perfect for entertaining in a small living room. Ottomans are also a great place to store extra pillows or blankets, which is especially useful if your living room sofa also happens to be a pull out bed!

2. Glass coffee tables can create the illusion of more space.
Since glass coffee tables are see through your small living room isn’t being cut in half by a dark and bulky coffee table. Although they are more fragile than solid wood coffee tables (something to consider if you have young children or pets), glass coffee tables essentially “disappear” in your living room, creating the illusion of more space.

3. Armless sofas give you extra seating to work with.
If you like to entertain, armless sofas can give you a little extra seating space to accommodate all your guests. While you may not be able fit the five piece sectional sofa in your small living room, you might be able to fit one more person on an armless sofa since you get a few extra inches of space on either end. If you go for two small armless sofas they can be rearranged into one big sofa as needed.

4. Wall mounted storage units don’t take up floor space.
Wall mounted storage racks and shelves are a great way to free up floor space without sacrificing storage capacity in your small living room. Storage racks and shelves are a great place to puts DVDs and video games, fun décor items, books or other household knickknacks. You could even create a wall mounted desk solution with a hutch if you need to make room for a home office in your small living room. If you have a really oddly shaped room, or “leftover space,” consider having a custom built wall unit installed! It’ll optimize every inch of space.

The most important thing to remember when furnishing a small living room is to take a lot of measurements! How much space do you really have to work with? A few inches one way or the other can make a big difference. Don’t forget to account for windows, doors, radiators and other things that might impact how you furnish and organize your small living room.

Why Buy Unfinished Wood Furniture?

Just to clarify, buying unfinished wood furniture doesn’t mean you’re going to have to turn a tree into a chair. Unfinished wood furniture is still a complete piece; it just hasn’t had its final finish and sealer applied. Sometimes called “bare wood furniture,” unfinished wood furniture is great for DIY homeowners and apartment dwellers that want to make their new furniture uniquely theirs. It’s also a great solution to matching new furniture with old to create a consistent look in a room.

Here are 3 reasons to consider buying unfinished wood furniture:

You can create your own stain.
If you walk into a home improvement store like Lowe’s or Home Depot there are probably dozens (if not hundreds) of furniture stains for you to choose from for your unfinished furniture. You can pull any one of these off the shelf for a great look, or you can get creative and create your own stain color by mixing a few options together. It’s easy to mix compatible wood stains or dyes to create the totally new shade you want, or simply reduce the darkness of a shade by mixing in a little more solvent. There is no limit to what stains you can create!

Making your own stain is a great to integrate a new piece of furniture in with older pieces and match your existing décor without going over budget.

You could even go really wild and use fun paint colors to create a totally different vibe for your unfinished furniture. Why not have bright green bed frames or a red bookcase to show off your personality? You can also add stenciled designs if you’re feeling extra creative!

It’s usually less expensive than finished furniture.
Because the furniture manufacturer isn’t finishing the furniture themselves, a piece of unfinished furniture is almost always less expensive than its finished counterpart. Since wood stains aren’t that expensive, buying unfinished furniture could make a big difference for your wallet in the end. Keep in mind that the drop in cost doesn’t mean the unfinished furniture is of a lesser quality than the finished pieces for sale. You’re still getting the same great quality, just at a lower price because of the DIY factor.

Furniture manufacturers can’t hide the faults in unfinished wood furniture.
With unfinished furniture, what you see is what you get. There is no way a furniture manufacturer could hide any defects in the wood with paints or stains if they didn’t use them! This also means that furniture manufacturers can’t get away with using inferior wood and masking it under heavy layers of finish and paint. Unfinished furniture will show you exactly where there are (if any) knots, discolorations or other defects that some finished furniture won’t show until its starts to wear.

But what’s the greatest thing about buying unfinished furniture? When friends and family compliment it you get to say “I did it myself!”

Building a Great Kid’s Bedroom

For many children, their bedroom is much more than a place to sleep. A kid’s bedroom is their indoor playground, their library, their toy store and much more all rolled into one. Most parents design a newborn’s nursery to look and feel the way they want, but as children grow up they can start to have their own specific ideas of what constitutes a great bedroom design. Whether your cowboy or princess wants zebra stripped blankets or dinosaur wallpaper, there are a few kid’s bedroom essentials that you can’t miss.

Toy chests
You can never really have enough storage in a child’s room. All those toys and books need to go somewhere at the end of the day! Storage chests or benches are a great place to store extra stuffed animals, board games, crafts supplies and more. Since storage benches and toy chests sit on the floor, it’s easier for your child to help clean up since they don’t have to reach a tall shelf to put their things away.

Trundle beds
Trundle beds are great in kid’s bedrooms for a couple of reasons. First, trundle beds are perfect for sleepovers with friends and family. Some trundle bed designs even come with a few extra drawers, giving your kid’s room even more storage space. Trundle beds also make great day beds, so if you don’t have a lot of space to work with it can function as double duty furniture.

Bookcases
Of course bookcases are the perfect place to store all of your child’s favorite books, but they can also be used to display school projects, birthday cards, family photos and other fun knickknacks. Shorter bookcases keep everything at child eye level, while taller bookcases are a good way to keep some items out of reach if needed.

Table and chair set
A table and chair set is a great way to keep crafts projects and coloring books off the kitchen table. A table and chair set, built specifically for a kid’s bedroom, is the perfect place for kids to draw and color, do homework, play board games, have a tea party and much more. You can opt for plastic or real wood sets and even get the table and chairs in fun kid-approved colors or designs.

Keep in mind that your child’s tastes may change overnight. Today they love astronauts and insist on space wallpaper; tomorrow they want to sleep in a racecar. But if you choose kids’ bedroom furniture that works with any design choice your child may happen upon, there is nothing that a fresh coat of paint and a few new posters can’t do!

First Time Furniture Buyers Shopping Tips

Buying new furniture can be both a fun and exhausting experience. It’s very easy to get overwhelmed by the sheer amount of options a new furniture buyer has, not just in terms of how customized the shopping experience can be but also the amount of furniture stores that potentially exist in your area. If you are a first time furniture buyer, here are a few tips to help you navigate the world of furniture shopping!

1. Build a budget (and assume you’re low!)
Most first time furniture buyers are always surprised at how much a brand-new bed or couch will cost. Even at the “cheap” furniture stores many new furniture buyers will suffer from a bit of sticker shock. When you’re beginning your shopping adventure, it’s important to figure out your budget. Maybe you can’t afford to buy a full bedroom set this month, so you spread the purchases out over the next three months and build your new bedroom over time. It’ll be a lot less painful on your wallet!

2. Decide what you need versus what you want.
Buying furniture for the first time can be a lot of fun. It’s the opportunity to express yourself as an individual and figure out a design style that is uniquely you. However, it’s very easy to get carried away and make grandiose plans for hutches, benches, ottomans, room dividers, entertainment centers and more—but what do you really need? This will often tie back into your budget. You NEED a bed, you may WANT a bar for the living room—which one are you willing to pay for?

3. Research local furniture manufacturers.
productscoastercolordaybeds_-_coaster_300398-b0__80794.1464100865.864.850When looking around for local furniture manufacturers, it’s important to make sure you work with a reputable seller. Here are a few things you want to ask before you pull out your wallet for a new furniture purchase:

    • Do they offer warranties? Lifetime or limited?
    • Do they offer home delivery? At what cost?
    • Any furniture sales or deals going on?

4. Factor in your lifestyle.
If you plan on moving to a new apartment in the next few months ask yourself, do I want to assemble all this furniture only to disassemble it in 3 months? Are you planning on having kids anytime soon? Do you have pets? Is your significant other moving in? All of these lifestyle factors and more should influence what kind of furniture you’re looking to buy. Furniture is an investment, and you want to make sure you are going to get your monies worth for a long time to come.

5. See it in person.
There is a big difference between looking at a picture online versus seeing it in person. Is that chair the same shade of green in the light of day as it is in a staged photo? How comfortable is that new bed or couch? How tall is the coffee table? While there is nothing wrong with shopping online (it’s fast and convenient) if you have the option to see your new furniture in person before you purchase it it’s definitely worth a quick trip to the store.

Save Money and Space with Double Duty Furniture

For furniture shoppers that are tight on budget and floor space, double duty furniture is the perfect solution. These multi-purpose pieces of furniture mean you don’t have to sacrifice on storage space or function, and you aren’t trying to cram more furniture into a room than can comfortably fit. Double duty furniture also gives you twice the furniture for your money, which is great for furniture buyers looking to furnish their first apartment (meaning they need everything!) but don’t want to break the bank.

Here are three pieces of furniture that are more than they seem!

Beds and Dressers
For small apartment dwellers (or anyone with a bedroom that is short on floor space) a storage bed is both a great bed AND full dresser! Some storage bed designs have 8 different drawers (4 drawers at the foot of the bed, 2 drawers and one cabinet door on either side of the base) so you have plenty of storage space. If you don’t need the full 8 drawers you can always opt for a 4 drawer or 2 drawer storage bed design. The 2 drawer storage bed is great for beds that are going to be flush against a wall as both of the drawers are on one side so you have easy access to all your clothes.

Headboards and Bookcases
IMG_2357_001__24257.1359487741.864.850Bookcase headboards are perfect for storing books, clocks and radios, your phone or whatever else you like. While they aren’t as large as a regular bookcase (usually you only get one or two shelves) bookcase headboards are a great way to get little things off the floor or your bedside table.

Benches and Storage
Benches are really a universal seating option. They can be simple and plain, perfect for entryways or mudrooms, or they can be sleek and sophisticated for even the most modern of living room designs. But what makes double duty benches even more useful is they are also a well concealed storage option! Storage benches and ottomans in living rooms are the perfect place to store extra blankets and pillows; in kids’ rooms they make great toy storage options and are a great place to store things like sports equipment, umbrellas and so forth. Storage benches can be even used as a coffee table or a filing cabinet if need be.

Furnishing a room with the necessary pieces can be costly. By going with double duty furniture, you can drastically reduce your furniture costs without sacrificing storage space or function!

Rearranging Your Living Room Furniture Requires a Plan

One of the most common mistakes furniture shoppers make is they don’t measure their space before buying new living room furniture. There is nothing worse than coming home with your brand new sofa or coffee table or entertainment center and realizing that it’s not going to fit in your living room. It’s even worse for us New York apartment dwellers when we realize we can’t even get our new furniture up the stairs to our 3rd floor apartment! That’s why, before you start rearranging your living room furniture (or shopping for new pieces) you have to plan and map out the space you have to work with.

Mapping out your living room isn’t nearly as hard as you might think it is. All you need is a regular old piece of paper and a tape measure! Measure each of your walls and scale them down to fit on your piece of paper. Make sure you keep the scale the same throughout your sketching, so make it something you can easily convert and remember productscoastercolorellery_181734809_505771_b1__95456.1452545236.864.850(like one foot of living room equals one inch of paper). Once you have your room sketched out (don’t forget to include doors and windows), measure your existing pieces of living room furniture and make small paper cutouts from a separate sheet of paper. You can use these paper cutouts to rearrange your living room without having to do any actual heavy lifting. That way you’ll be 100% sure everything will fit before you start rearranging furniture. You might also want to mark where things like radiators, electrical outlets or cable hookups are since those influence how much flexibility you have with your living room design.

If you are looking to buy new living room furniture, be sure to bring your living room map with you to the store! If you know where you want a new piece to fit all you have to do is check the measurements of the display models and you can be sure it won’t be too large or too small for the space available. Furniture shopping can be a very stressful experience since you have so many options to sort through and hoping something is going to fit isn’t going to make it any easier. If you know exactly how much room you have to play with, that will help narrow down your options and focus your vision.

Making a quick map of your living room before you start rearranging furniture is a quick and easy way to save yourself a lot of time and hassle later!

Creating a Concealed Home Office for Telecommuting

Some studies suggest that as many as 50 million Americans telecommute at least once a week and over two million workers consider their home their primary office space. With so much of the employed force being able to work from home, the need for home office furniture and design ideas is greater than ever. Some telecommuters are lucky enough to have a whole room as their home office (either specifically built as office space or maybe even a former guest bedroom), but for many homeowners and apartment dwellers, their “home office” is little more than a table with a computer crammed into the living room. But just because you are short on space, that doesn’t mean you can’t have a great home office to work from!

One of the most important things about creating a home office is that you want it separate from the rest of your living spaces. Many telecommuters find it hard to stop working when they never physically go to and from a new work environment. Work and home life start to melt into each other, but you deserve to close the door at five and call it a day!

To help keep your work and home life separate, especially when you are short on space, consider converting an armoire into a concealed home office. You can add extra shelves for books and papers, file drawers and a pull out shelf for a laptop or keyboard.  On the desk__34727.1458059336.864.850inside doors you add corkboard and use pushpins to help keep ideas, memos and notes organized. When you close the doors at the end of the day a functional workspace is concealed inside. With a custom-fitted armoire, you’ve essentially created your own version of a secretary’s desk!

Another great solution for a concealed home office is by converting an extra closet in a guest bedroom.  You can fit the closet with a small filing cabinet, cubes for storage, floating shelves, wire baskets, peg boards attached to the doors, hooks, sconce for lighting and a small chair. When you are done with your workday you can simply close the door and leave your work in the closet.

The key to keeping a concealed home office functional is to minimize the clutter. After all, you have to be able to shut the doors at the end of the day! Make sure you invest in the right storage solutions; things like small bookcases, shelving units, filing cabinets or even a small hutch make it a lot easier to keep your concealed home office organized and tidy. You don’t have a lot of room to spread out, so be sure to build up if possible (like adding shelves to the back wall of the closet) to optimize the existing space.

Have a Vision BEFORE You Go Furniture Shopping

It’s very easy to walk into a furniture store and immediately be inspired. You have the opportunity to completely redecorate your apartment—who do you want to be? You could go for a cool, white, minimalistic approach that screams modern. Or maybe fun and crazy throw pillows and rugs to show off your creativity! What about 60s-inspired lampshades or a free standing bar? Sometimes having so many options is actually a bad thing for inspiration; it pulls your focus in a dozen different directions at once. You either end up getting frustrated and not buying anything, or making decisions at random and ending up with a hodgepodge of furniture. Neither of these outcomes makes the furniture shopping process very fun.

That’s why it is so important to have a vision (or at the very least a basic idea) BEFORE you go furniture shopping. Having that starting point will help anchor your furniture buying decisions and you’ll walk out with what you need, what you want AND it will all work together.

A good place to start is by using your favorite piece in a room and build out from there. rois_sectional__91597.1446041778.864.850Let’s say you have this great sofa in your living that you want to decorate the rest of the room around. Not only is it the largest piece in your living room (which usually mean it’s the focal point), it’s a design style you love. What are some of the features of that sofa? How tall is it? What is the fabric’s color or pattern? Does it have metal or wood accents? Those details will help you find complementary pieces while your furniture shopping so you can more easily focus your vision.

Before you go furniture shopping, it’s also a good idea to figure out exactly what you need and how it is all going to fit. Chances are your apartment isn’t the same size/shape as the furniture store’s display room, so you need to know what is going to work in your space. You may want the end table AND the bar AND the entertainment center AND the bookcase AND the ottoman, but what can you realistically fit in your space? Having a vision (and a floor plan!) before you walk into the furniture store will help you avoid buying a piece of furniture that will have nowhere to live in your apartment. Also make sure you take measurements! There is nothing more disheartening than finding the perfect piece and realizing it won’t fit up your apartment stairs or through the door.

4 Tips for Decorating a Studio Apartment

Queen Captains BedGothic Cabinet Craft is based in New York City, so we know our way around a studio apartment pretty well. We understand that living in a studio apartment comes with certain design and functionality challenges. Limited floor space, limited room for storage and a limited budget (the main reason someone lives in a studio apartment!) all mean that decorating a studio apartment is no easy feat. In order to decorate your studio apartment without sacrificing functionality, it’s important to remember the following tips:

Be discerning with your design ideas
There is not a lot of room in your studio apartment for design, and too many ideas can make a small space feel even smaller and more cluttered. While there is nothing wrong with mixing prints, patterns and colors, you don’t want to go overboard. You also want to think carefully about what the focal point of your studio apartment is going to be. Maybe you have a really cool love seat with a funky patter you want to show off, or a fantastic view you’re proud off; maybe it’s just a fun poster. Whatever the focal point is, build you studio apartment around that.

Invest in multi-use furniture
When is a bed not a bed? When it’s also a dresser! Multi-purpose furniture like a Captains Bed is a great way to maximize your limited floor space and de-clutter your studio apartment by removing bulky pieces. A secretary desk with drawers gives you plenty of space to work and compartmentalize your office, plus it’s easy to close up and hide any mess when guests come over! You could also get a bookcase that pulls double duty as a headboard or turn a radiator cover into a small shelf.

Create “rooms”
So living in a studio apartment negates the physical presence of rooms, but that doesn’t mean you can’t create the allusion of rooms! You can use dividers (easy to move as needed), bookcases or dressers to physically separate the living/sleeping areas from the dining area, or just arrange your furniture so you have a space for sleeping, a space for cooking and space for relaxing.

Make sure there is plenty of light
Nothing makes a small space feel smaller than no light. If you’re studio apartment isn’t blessed with a lot of natural light, invest in some great (and fun looking!) light fixtures to brighten up the space. You can also position mirrors across from windows or other light sources to help reflect the light and make the room feel bigger. Using a lighter color on your walls will also help reflect any light.

These are just a few tips for decorating a studio apartment. Just remember, just because you live in small space that doesn’t mean you can’t love the way your apartment looks and feels! It just takes a few easy design choices to make a studio apartment feel like home.

3 Easy Ways to Make a Small Space Feel Bigger

Small spaces are just a fact of life for most urban apartment dwellers. Many apartment owners struggle to find ways to make the small space look and feel bigger, but don’t want to do anything that will clutter up what little space they do have. Visually expanding a room can be hard to do, but that doesn’t mean that it’s impossible!

If you are looking for way to make your small space feel bigger, here are three easy tips that won’t break your decorating budget:

1. Keep the wall color consistent
One way to help make your small apartment look and feel bigger is to use the same wall color throughout multiple rooms. This tricks the eye into thinking that the space is much bigger because the line between rooms isn’t broken by different colored walls. Contrary to what most people believe, dark colored walls don’t automatically make a space feel smaller. In fact, a dark wall with light molding makes the wall feel farther back, once again creating the illusion of more space.

2. Don’t hang everything at eye level
A good photographer knows that when it comes to mounting their work, there should always be a little extra space below the image compared to above it. This helps keep the picture from looking like its being pushed down and squished. The same holds true for your artwork and other wall decorations! Hanging everything at eye level will make your space feel short, and when you’re already trying to combat small you don’t want anything to look like it’s shrinking! Hang things a little above eye level, or even try a few low pieces, GK31__79531.1419891050.864.850to keep the eye moving.

If you one of the lucky few that have vaulted ceilings (even if it means you still don’t have the floor space), draw the eyes up by hanging art work high and investing in tall bookcases. It may not be as easy to clean, but it will help you take advantage of the height in your apartment.

3. Invest in mirrors
Mirrors are a small apartment owner’s best friend. Large mirrors, or even a cluster of small mirrors, can really help open up a space. Putting a mirror across from a window will help reflect limited natural light, which can also help make a room feel more open and bright. If you live in a basement apartment and don’t have windows in your room, hang up a large mirror and add curtains to give the look and feel of a window.

When trying to make a small space feel bigger, it’s important to not go overboard. You don’t have to use every trick in the book to make your apartment look and feel bigger. Sometimes just one or two things, provided they are the right things, can make all the difference.