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Ahhhhmazing DIY Success Story: Jean Prouve Potence Wall Lamp Replica by Cedrick & Sunny

Cedrick and Sunny fell in love with the Potence lamp by Jean Prouvé after seeing it in a few homes featured in design magazines. “It’s an innovative and bold way to bring light towards the center of a room when there is no built-in, hardwired ceiling fixture.” says Cedrick. With some time and help from professionals, you, too, can build a replica of this 1950s puristic pivoting wall lamp.

From Cedrick:

I started with a sketch and photos of the original lamp along with specs downloaded from the internet. Without welding skills, I had to determine a way to execute the look of the lamp using simpler construction methods.

The 1/2” crew pipe was sourced and purchased directly from Metal Supermarkets, where they cut it to the desired length needed.

After securing the tubing I was able to source a small shop, Bendfab Pipe and Tube in Mississauga, with the necessary equipment and willingness to do a “one-off” based on specs. As the design was relatively simple (3 bends), they agreed to take it on.

The electrical light components were purchased from The Color Cord Company out of Colorado and had to be dismantled and threaded through the bent tubing.

The solid teak wood wall mount for the lamp was upcycled from another vintage wall-mounted lamp but the lamp could just as easily been mounted to the wall using 2  U-shaped cushioned pipe clamps.

Erick’s Modern Organic Burbank Mix

HOUSE TOUR

Name: Erick Millan
Location: Burbank, California
Size: 650 square feet
Years lived in: 3 years; Rented

When Erick hired me to shoot his home for his new interior design portfolio, I immediately wanted to share it as a house tour because it exemplifies how easy it is to bring beautiful organic style to maximize a modest-sized home. It is his first completed design project and it is very, very special.

Erick believes that when you design a home, the most essential thing is that it feels alive and inviting. He has certainly accomplished this in his own home with all the plants and plenty of warm textures. The single most significant thing in his home is his altar, located off the dining room. “It allows me to keep myself grounded and be thankful for,” he says.

As a home that is filled with so many cultural artworks and influences, the apartment feels very authentic in Los Angeles. In terms of how the city has affected his design aesthetic, Erick loves that things are always growing and evolving here. “Within the urban space we are challenged on a daily basis to find the organic within the fabricated and the natural within the industrial. Living in Los Angeles has taught me how to seek out my roots while adding in new elements of the many diverse cultures, voices, and experiences here.”

Fix Up a Small Bathroom

5 Ways to Survive a Small Bathroom

You might be renting an apartment with the smallest bathroom ever. Or maybe you’ve bought a house but don’t have the money to renovate your tiny bathroom just yet. Whatever reason behind you having to make do with an extremely small bathroom, there are five ways you can survive such a small space.

1. Don’t have any more in there than you need

Though a small bathroom might hint at a home with similarly small rooms, don’t necessarily try and make your bathroom hold its fair share of stuff. Your bathroom is the place you get ready every morning and it’s also a high-mess place, so toothpaste particles, dust and grime happen in here a bit more than say, your living room. So only keep what you need in your bathroom to get ready and to use it, and find places for everything else. It will go a long way in making using your bathroom a lot more pleasant.

2. Fix the lighting

Whether you’ve got a window with natural light or not, chances are the light in your bathroom is either not enough, a terrible color or not even everywhere. You’re going to want to get creative to ensure that you have enough light in all corners of the space so the rooms feels bright and clean, but also enough task lighting where you need it so you can get ready properly in the morning.

3. Make stuff easy to get to

So though a bathroom with zero things would certainly be a breath of fresh, minimal air, that’s not tenable. Even if you follow this post’s first suggestion, you still have some things you have to keep in your small bathroom, from toiletries to toilet paper and more. So the key here is to make what you do have easy to get to, which is going to mean hyper organization of the small storage spots you have.

Don’t just stuff a big box of supplies under the sink; organize that box with small tools or dividers so you can get to the things you need easier. Don’t be afraid to make your bathroom more functional by displaying tools you use every day, too. You can keep the room from feeling too cluttered by replacing varied packaging with similar containers and keeping the area neat and tidy. Steal kitchen organization ideas and tools to incorporate hooks, magnetic strips and more.

4. Expand the feel of the space

If you’re living in a home with a tiny bathroom, you’re going to want to do what you can expand the feel of the space. That might mean adjusting the shower curtain rod so that it doesn’t feel like it’s protruding into the space. It might mean replacing larger items with more streamlined ones (anything from trashcans to toilets to vanities and more). Adding a bigger mirror or even more mirrored surfaces will help reflect light. Painting on surfaces (if you’re able) like the walls, ceilings, floor and more can help visually expand the feel of the space if you play your color card right.

5. Consider comfort

There’s something a little clinical about a small bathroom. Particularly if you’ve got a lot of rental limitations (and you’re following the above advice), you can end up with a space that’s minimal and clean, but without a lot of feeling. Sure that’s not a big deal when you’re in a hurry and getting ready in the morning, but what about when you need a place to relax after a stressful day at work (or just need to escape from the kiddos for a minute or two to catch your breath)? That’s where centering on comfort can help you survive a small bathroom. Opt for the extra plush floor mat. Go for the fabric shower curtain. Choose the big fluffy towels. Add in at least one or two elements that holds comfort to you.

DIY

Can Jon Wegener Bring Surfing Back To Its Roots With Handcrafted Boards?

I’ve never surfed before but it’s definitely something I want to try. I’m sure it’s not an easy feat but I’ve got some experience on a skateboard and also determination. These handcrafted boards by Jon Wegener seem like the type of board I would want to ride. Based on the more primitive designs from surfing’s Polynesian roots, these boards are styled in the alaia fashion, which is finless. This gives the rider more freedom to slip and slide around on the waves, but also a little more difficult to get the feel of. Either way, it looks like fun and something that I definitely need to ride! – Chris

News

11 Ways to Add a Little Style to Your Rental Kitchen

RENTERS SOLUTIONS

Maybe you’re renting, but you dream of a beautiful, stylish kitchen, and you spend your days looking longingly at kitchen remodels on design blogs, wishing you could change anything, anything at all, about your kind of terrible rental kitchen. The good news? There are lots of things you can do to make your kitchen better without so much as picking up a hammer. Here are ten ideas.

Above: Colorful textiles — a rug, or even some attractive dish towels — can go a long way towards perking up a tired kitchen.

Adding art to your kitchen is an easy way to give it a completely new look. Ok, so you might need a hammer for this one, but there’s no remodeling required.

Why not display a collection of colorful dishes?

Plants are an easy way to add color and life to your kitchen — and if you’re able to grow herbs, you can add them to your cooking too.

You’d be surprised at what a big difference little details make. Switching out your hardware can make a big difference in the overall look of your kitchen — and it’s an easy change to reverse when you move out.

You’ll have to check with your landlord on this one, but if you can get permission, painting your cabinets can give you what feels like an entire new kitchen. If painting all the cabinets seems too daunting, try painting just the upper or just the lower cabinets, like Lee did in his rental kitchen.

If you like the look of open shelving try removing the doors of a few of your cabinets and creating a display for your more attractive dishware. Save the doors and the hardware to replace them when you move out (or decide to move on to a new look).

If you like the country-kitchen look, you could replace cabinets doors with a skirt. It’s a look we’re starting to see in more and more kitchens.

Painting the inside of your cabinets will make for a little burst of color every time you reach for a plate. (Bonus points for painting the inside of your cabinets andremoving the doors, as seen below.)

A more attractive backsplash will perk up any kitchen. Kerry upgraded hers with tin ceiling tiles, but we’ve also got plenty of other ideas for removable, DIY kitchen backsplashes.

Replacing light fixtures may be easier than you think. We’ve got simple tutorials for removing your old fixtures and installing new ones.

(Image credits: My Scandinavian HomeChris PerezAshley PoskinEntranceHouzzLeeNancy MitchellHome & GardenA Beautiful MessJacqueline MarqueCarolyn Purnell)

Apartment News

Ten Things You Should Upgrade in Your Rental (and Then Take With You)

It’s taken years for me to come around to the idea that a home isn’t any less of a home because it’s rented. Five years, actually — that’s how long I’ve lived in my white-walled, cookie-cutter apartment. But now that I’m finally comfortable hanging shelves and buying furniture to fit my space, my husband and I have our sights set on buying our first house next summer. That’s why all of our recent apartment projects have focused on “forever upgrades”— we’re investing only in the things we can replace in our rental today and still take with us to a new home.

Even if, like us, you know your living situation is temporary, don’t let that inspire a case of improvement paralysis. Here are ten things you can splurge on right now for your rental, knowing the investment will travel with you to your next home (or seven).

Kitchen Faucet

This is the easiest way to perk up a boring kitchen. Pick out a new faucet for the sink that’s a true statement piece and instantly knock your kitchen’s style up a few notches. Daniel of Manhattan Nest did this in his former Brooklyn apartment and you can do it too. Here are 10 beautiful faucets for less than $200, and here’s a Home Hacks post from The Kitchn about how to replace a kitchen faucet.

Shower Head

Replacing your standard-issue shower head with a new one has a two-fold benefit: your new hardware will look and feel better, and if you buy something low-flow, it will use less water overall. Win-win! Here are the New York Times’ picks for the best low-flow shower heads, and a helpful post from us to show youhow to install them.

Window Coverings

You can hang curtains, of course, but it’s pretty easy (and totally reversible) to install new blinds, shades, or window film on your windows to replace the beige-ish vinyl mini-blinds that came with your unit. The only caveat here is that you might not get to re-use blinds if your windows — now or in your next home — are a non-standard size.

Cabinet Handles & Pulls

Such a simple thing can make a huge difference. Find new cabinet hardware that’s more your taste (making sure they fit the cabinets’ existing holes) and switch out every one of them. Total project time: about 5 minutes. Here’s a handy post on choosing and installing new hardware, and here are 10 of The Kitchn’s favorite sources for knobs and pulls.

Toilet Paper Holder

Often forgotten, a sturdy and attractive toilet paper holder is one of life’s little joys. It’s the one thing in your home you’re guaranteed to touch every day. If your apartment’s toilet roll is flimsy and plastic, or if it’s placed awkwardly in the room, take it down and replace it with one of the world’s most beautiful toilet paper holders — you’ll marvel at its allure 5 to 10 times a day.

Toilet Seat

Again, the bathroom is kind of an important room. I’m not saying a good toilet seat is as important for your well-being as a good mattress, I’m just saying… it’s close. A new seat can cost as little as $10 and will eliminate the myriad rental toilet sins: ugly, discolored, uncomfortable, and/or made of super thin plastic. Here’s a handy tutorial on how to replace a toilet seat.

Light Fixtures

This is a place to splurge. Replace your rental’s overhead light with a fixture that you will love for years and years to come. The new hardware will look great, and choosing your own fixture will also give you control over the kind of light you want in your home. Here’s a short round-up of sources to learn how to change a light fixture in your apartment.

Thermostat

If your rental doesn’t already have a programmable thermostat, get on that. You’ll reap tons of savings on your bill by being able to control your heat and cooling around-the-clock. If you already have a decent thermostat, maybe consider investing in a smart Nest thermostat that can learn about your climate habits at every place you live. Here’s a how-to on installing a Nest for the first time.

Pull-Out Shelves

Organization is key to happy home. Convert your messy lower kitchen cabinets into pull-out drawers, like Chris did over on The Kitchn, and take all the hardware with you when you leave. It’s a great solution for under the sink, too.

Light Switches & Power Outlets

Ugly colored switch plate? Switch it out. Craving modern outlets with a sleeker look? Replace them. Want a dimmer switch in the bedroom? Totally doable. Wish you could just plug your iPhone’s USB cord into the wall by the bed? There’s a tutorial for that.

What forever upgrades have you made- or wished you’d made- to a rented home?

(Image credits: Leela CydHunted InteriorChris Perez)

Renter’s Insurance

Renter’s Insurance

Apartment rental insurance is a special policy that protects the contents of your apartment from loss or damage. Similar to homeowners’ insurance, apartment rental insurance covers your property losses in a variety of situations including fire, hail, theft and electrical current damage. It also covers your liability if someone is injured in your apartment or by your pet. While each apartment community has its own insurance policy, that insurance covers only the dwelling. It specifically excludes your belongings. That’s why you need apartment rental insurance.

And it won’t cost you an arm and a leg! Many people don’t have apartment rental insurance because they think it will be too expensive, however compared to Home Owner’s Insurance apartment rental insurance is inexpensive. Premiums are calculated based upon the value of furniture and other personal possessions, and most companies offer policies with coverage starting at $15,000. You may not think you own a lot, but replacing everything you own might be required if a fire does break out and this alternative could be expensive.

When looking for coverage, see if the company will pay for “ Actual Cash Value (ACV)” or “Replacement Cost Value (RCV)“. ACV will cover what your property was worth when damaged or stolen. RCV will cover what it costs to replace the property. Some high-value items such as expensive electronics, jewelry, or professional equipment may require separate coverage called “riders”. Be sure to check first with your apartment rental insurance company before purchasing a policy.

A good place to start looking for apartment rental coverage is with your auto insurance carrier who might give you a better rate for owning multiple policies. Also, shop around on the internet by getting rate quotes from popular insurance carriers