Thursday, February 24, 2011

With a touch of your remote...

We've got buttons for everything now. You can indicate your support for something on Facebook with a click of the "like" button, Staples has its "easy button," and let's not forget the push-button car engine start that gave Little Vader a boost in that VW commercial. Portugese design firm Consexto now brings us a push-button condo. Like Gary Chang's Hong Kong apartment, this 44-square meter home transforms itself to suit its owners' needs. Using a remote, you can have the walls move to maximize space in one room over another, drop down kitchen shelves like in the pic above, or turn your dining room into an entertainment center.
You really do have to see it all in action in order to appreciate how cool this is. Unfortunately the vid's in Portuguese -- or I should say, unfortunately I don't speak Portuguese. But the pretty, pretty pictures are enough for me to follow along.

Closet House from ArchDaily on Vimeo.

Still, the moving walls make me think of another Star Wars-related scene. Here's hoping they don't malfunction and squash its occupant...
Via Dornob.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Apartmental physics

I doubt that Sir Isaac Newton was a renter. They kind of glossed over most of his personal life in high school physics class, so I can only guess at whether or not he came up with "what goes up must come down" in regard to pulling down your wallpaper when trying to get your security deposit back. (Somehow I think he wasn't.) But whether he intended his law that way or not, it's still true that when you're renting an apartment and want to get your money back, you're going to have to take down all the little improvements you made while you lived there. We've covered temporary wallpaper here on TAA before, and I even took you through the process of putting it up in my own home. But I recently came across two great articles about both the beginning and the end of having temporary wallpaper, and had to share! Over at Lifehacker, Melanie Pinola has put together a great post on installing fabric wallpaper -- with the added creative twist of using cutout fabric to create more designs than just the base "wallpaper." Her idea has got my own brain working -- wouldn't it be so cute to find a fabric with a cute pattern, and just cut it out around the pattern, installing it over another background fabric? Hmm... The possibilities are endless...
... And though the possibilities for cute temporary wallpaper are practically endless, the point of temporary wallpaper is that it can come to an end in the first place. Jordan Ferney at Oh Happy Day recently vacated her San Francisco home in order to move to Paris. (Where's my tiny violin?) She had Sherwin William's TemPaper installed in her hallway, and shared its removal with her readers.
According to Jordan, removal was a quick and easy process, but her walls didn't escape unscathed. There was some glue residue left on the walls, and they'll probably need to be repainted to be restored to pristine condition. But hey, it's a lot better than what normal wallpaper (let alone paint) would have required to fix. This might actually be Newton's other law of renting: every action has an equal and opposite reaction. After all, the amount of damage your decorating does to your rental will certainly cause a proportionate heart attack in your landlord. Here's hoping that temporary wallpapers like the ones above only cause a slight murmur. Via Lifehacker and Oh Happy Day.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

2-D or not 2-D

I wish I could remember where I heard my favorite review of the new Tron movie: "For a 3-D movie, they sure did a good job of making sure all the characters were still 2-D." Oooh, burn on Jeff Bridges! This kind of aggression will not stand, man. But what will stand are these great examples of 2-D furniture. When you've got no space in your place, substituting real furniture pieces with their shadows is a cool way to go. We've talked about wallstickers on TAA before, but these are sort of a sub-category of decal. These silhouette stand-ins can even function like their 3-D counterparts.
The Droog nightstand, above (which is sadly no longer available on their website) uses a cleverly-placed shelf as a drawer for a stand that's just a sticker. And the clock below, from Bouf, has the look of a large, old timey clock, but consists of only the decal and the clockface with the mechanism behind it.
There are tons of options for fully-flat headboards, too. You can go modern, like the Nico from our friends at Blik...
... or something more classic, like this one from Urban Outfitters. Sure, most headboards are only a few inches thick anyway, but when space is at a premium you can give yourself a little more room by opting for the milimeters-thick alternative.
Wallsticker stand-ins are also cheaper than their full-figured counterparts, and a lot easier to carry up the stairs to your third floor apartment with no elevator. Of course, they're not without their drawbacks. Trying to handcuff someone to that headboard seems less effective, somehow... Via The Gloss, Droog, Fresh Design Blog, Bouf, Blik, and Urban Outfitters.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Cubbies for grown-ups

Ah, the cubby. So commonly found in kindergarten, it's your first space outside of your home where you can stash your treasures: your brown-bag lunch that your mom was written your name on, an interesting rock you found on the playground, a slap bracelet or pogs or Pokemon cards or whatever your generation's into. A wall of cubbies, one for each kid's stuff. As an adult, a wall of cubbies still has its appeal. Why do you think I love the EXPEDIT so much? In a tiny-ass apartment, a wall of floor-to-ceiling storage is incredibly useful. Practically speaking, the EXPEDIT or BILLY (like Rebecca from Loving Living Small so beautifully demonstrated) are more realistic, but that doesn't stop me from drooling over the amazing work of Platt Dana Architects, who were recently featured on Apartment Therapy: New York.
Their use of built-ins, both closed-cabinet and open, makes for tidy, organized spaces. Even small nooks like the one below feel bright and clean, with everything tucked away in the wall units. Sure, there's no telling what kind of mess lurks behind those shiny white cabinet doors, but once they're closed no one's the wiser.
Having an entire wall of cabinets and shelves makes finding a place for all your stuff dead simple. So easy, in fact, a kindergartener could do it. Via Apartment Therapy: NY.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Back from hiatus...

Hello, everyone! It's been a while.

Yes, I know. My poor, beloved Tiny-Ass Apartment blog was so neglected I'm surprised no one called Social Services on it. I took another hiatus due to being consumed with my move back to the Bay Area, a new gig, the holiday season... But I've missed it! I've missed you, my awesome, smart, funny readers.

So if you'll bear with me a few days more, I promise we'll come out of reruns and have some new episodes for you! It's been a bitch trying to get the new stuff together -- our female lead is kind of a diva. ;-)


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