Archives for May 2011

The Nicholas House AFTERS!

First, major kudos to Erika and Dayka for pulling off the very first Room Service project!  Nicholas House is definitely a different place now after a band of designers, artists, and volunteers spent five days there last week.  Everyone did an amazing job, and I am just so grateful to be a part of the project.

My room, where currently resides a mother and her two children, is only 9 x 15′.  With bunk beds, a full-size bed, and two sets of windows, there isn’t much room left for storage pieces–which the room desperately needed.  I couldn’t repurpose furniture for the space and figured the most efficient use of storage would be in built-ins.  Here is the entrance to the room before:

And, after, I utilized the corner wall space with a corner IKEA Pax closet.  Floor-to-ceiling, the closet has shelves and two sets of clothing bars.  Chris built a plywood surround for the closet to make it a little more durable for daily use by a family.

The room is on the third floor and has beautiful views of the treetops–but the bunks hindered the view.

We moved the bunks to the opposite wall (that would be Renae and I pushing them with our bums) and then created a dual-purpose space under the windows–storage and a comfy 7.5′ window seat!  Again, Chris surrounded IKEA Stolmen drawers with a plywood bench.  I donated the tray that the residents can use as a desk top while sitting on the bench, and the legs flip up for flat storage under the bed when not in use.

I didn’t want the narrow space between the two windows to go to waste–so I was very excited to see that the pine IKEA Ivar shelving unit would fit perfectly there.  And the option of the doors meant that we could reduce more visual clutter!

There was no rest for the eyes before in the room.  Because of the lack of storage, the residents had the store their things on open shelves.

Now they have a place for everything–a medicine cabinet area for their toiletries, hooks and a magnetic board behind the door, bins and bins and more under the bed.  My goal was to provide them with as much storage in the room while also keeping it light and airy and durable for years of use.

I started with the faux bois fabric that Lewis & Sheron donated–perfect to hide wear and tear for the window seat cushion, and then I found the green and floral quilts at TJMaxx for a nice little mix.

This all couldn’t have been possible without these FINE people:

Thank you to Bill Cox for donating his time and materials to make the window seat cushion, two window valances, and four covers for the Dacron-donated pillow forms!  He is so good at what he does, busy, and so generous to help me and Nicholas House.  THANK YOU, Bill!


Thank you to Chris Lund for all the heavy lifting, all the constructing, all the anchoring, and all the extras!  It all works because of Chris.  THANK YOU!


Thank you to my two blondies!  Rhoda helped keep us on a track when we had crazy ideas (lifesaver!) and tackled the room with spray bleach and paint brush.  Renae sat in the trenches with me and stayed on task even if it meant I would change my mind two or three more times.  She also reminded me to eat and drink; and after working all day and all I could think about was collapsing, she was ready for a 30-mile bike ride.  Awesomeness.  THANK YOU, ladies!


My very special three Stooges, Chris, Alan, and Loverboy–thank you for a very hot day of IKEA assembly!  And thank you to my husband in particular for patience and encouragement.  And to my kids, too!  And to the very special women who kept the house and homeschool rolling in my absence.  And thank you to my mother for her monetary donation!  You all rock!!!  THANK YOU!


Thank you, Erika and Dayka, for inviting me to join the project.  It was fun and rewarding in so many ways.  I’ll link up to the other bloggers’ rooms as their posts go up–you won’t want to miss those!