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Once upon a time, I had a steamer trunk coffee table. This was back in 1999, at my student house in Kingston, ON.

The trunk was part of a decor scheme that included two royal blue futons, a barko lounger, twinkle lights, and a carboard cut out of Austin Powers' Mini Me.

Oh, and a poster of Sly Stalone. As Rocky. Natch.

I'm not sure where the trunk came from. It just showed up one day. I assume one of my roommates brought it home. It was blue. And very beat-up. But I was living on $100 a month for groceries at the time, so I wasn't in a position to turn my nose up at free furniture.

Anyway. I tell you this because I recently came across another steamer trunk (curbside) and I immediately fell in love and hauled it home. It's also blue and very beat up. The hardware is rusty, but other than that, it's in good shape and a little rust doesn't bother me. Adds character. Patina. (See my patina/poo post for more on that front.)

I'm thinking of using the new/old trunk in Pete's new place. I'm not sure he'll go for it, so I've been hunting down images of trunks used in similar applications.

What do you think of the steamer trunk coffee table? Is it passé? I asked this question on Twitter the other day and people seemed pretty positive about it, but I think a lot of the naysayers were just keeping quiet. If you hate it (or like it), by all means, speak up.

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Image from HGTV via Apartment Therapy.
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Image from Country Living.
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Image from Tommy Hilfiger.
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Source unknown. If you or someone you know owns this image, please email me.
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From Seattle Magazine, by Kelley Moore. Photo by Tom Barwick.
 
 
Sometimes, especially in the summer, I start craving all things white. I want white bedding, white slip-covered sofas, white walls. White white white.

Unfortunately for me, no matter what time of year it is, Nate isn't very keen on white. He thinks it's cold.

And maybe he's right. White can be cold. But it's hot as heck in Toronto and cold is what I crave. Stark, clean, utterly impractical (and yes, cold) white.

WHITE! Here's some inspiration for a sweltering day:
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If you or anyone you know owns this image, please email me.
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Creative commons image of white pottery by daisybush from Flickr.
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If you or anyone you know owns this image, please email me.
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If you or anyone you know owns this image, please email me.
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Empty white room photo by ArhcamtIlnaad from Deviantart.
 
 
Today, I bring you a teeny-weenie, super-simple organization project that will help you hide your ugly tech objects.

If, like me, you love your computer, ipod, and other gadgetry, but hate ugly wires, this is a handy fix. All you need to cure your wire woes are a few simple, wood boxes from the dollar store. Modify the boxes with drill-holes to accommodate your wires and voila:

a tidy storage solution.
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I chose my storage box specifically to house my external, back-up hard drive, which I keep plugged into my computer almost constantly (the USB cable that connects it to my lap top is visible in the picture.)

My desk is so much nicer now that it's hidden away. This project is satisfying and way simple. I swear. Try it immediately.
 
 
I've been hard at work scouring the web for stuff for my pal Pete's new apartment (which I posted about last week). Here are some of the things I've got my eye on. Tell me what you think.
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Craigslist find: grey velvet sofa. It's vintage. It's a pull-out. And it's only $100.
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A hide rug. Ubiquitous, I know, but so what? This is a man cave.

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At least two funky, vintage side chairs. I'm not sure these are the ones I want, but they're an option from Craigslist, selling for $274 for a set of four.
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Here's another chair option from Craigslit. These black bad boys are only $105 for the pair.
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And if I can find (or make) one, I'd like to go with a really rustic, industrial sort of coffee table, like this one from Etsy's brandmojiinteriors.

ANYWAY.

Regardless, I'm going to have to work around a few existing items. For example, Pete's rug, which is a sort of Persian-type thing, not unlike this:
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And his vintage fire extinguisher, which looks like this:
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AND, most importantly, his authentic musk ox pelt. (Yes. I said musk ox. Yes. I said pelt.)
As in, this:
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Challenging, yes. But endlessly fun.

What do you think of my ideas for the man cave? Yea or nay? We spent a lot of the weekend painting the space, getting it ready for furniture. Alas, Pete fears bed bugs (who doesn't?) so Craigslist finds might be a bad idea, but regardless, ideas are percolating. I'd love some feedback.
 
 
Lately, whenever I see an old Anchor Hocking creamer (or pint pitcher) at a vintage store, I scoop it up. I don't know why. How many creamers does a person need? (Particularly a person who doesn't actually USE cream.)

Eesh.

It's crazy, I know. But these little guys just seem to call out to me. Here are a couple of my recent buys:
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They're only about 10-12 cm tall and they're cute cute cute. Or at least, to me they are.

Each time I buy one, I envision myself hosting an aborable brunch, complete with cream and maple syrup served from these cutie-pie pitchers. But the brunch never happens and the pitchers make their way into my cupboards to be admired, but never used. And yet, I buy more. 

Got any ideas about how I might use them? Besides brunch, I mean. Clearly, that's not going to happen.
 
 
Hey dudes. Sorry about the lapse in posting. I was on holiday in the maritimes for the last couple of weeks and the vacation included a complete unplug.

But now I'm back, revived, and raring to go.

First on the agenda: the Pete project.

Pete is a friend. He's also my partner Nathan's step-brother/cousin (long story). And as of June 1st, he's our new next-door neighbour. We live in an old four-plex in midtown Toronto and Pete has just occupied an apartment in our building that is the exact mirror image of our own. And he wants help with it. So help he shall get.
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This is already turing into a really fun project. One of my main psychological issues is the need for change, but I can only redecorate my apartment so many times before it becomes obscene. The Pete project is giving me a chance to try things in a space exactly like my own, without the guilt that comes with getting new stuff for no reason. It's perfect!

At the moment, Pete's place is a blank slate. He has little to no furniture, and the walls need to be painted. So we're starting from scratch. And I've been thinking and thinking about what sort of style would work and I've finally come up with an idea: modern tribal man-cave.  Or something. I'm not sure what to call it.

Pete is a bit of a man's man. (And a bit of a ladies' man, but that's another story). And he will be living with another manly man. And he's a fan of travel, the rustic, global style, etc. And he seems to like vintage furniture (and probably can't afford a lot of stuff new anyway). So with all that in mind, here are some images that give off the general vibe of what I'm thinking when I say "modern tribal man-cave:"
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"Rebel cool living room" designed by Suzanne Dimma for the August 2009 issue of House & Home.
Photo by Angus Fergusson.
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This shot's from the May 2010 issue of House & Home.
Photo by Rob Fiocca.

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Tommy Smythe's old bachelor pad bedroom from the September 2007 issue of House & Home. 
Photos by Michael Graydon.


Maybe modern tribal man-cave is a silly thing to call it. don't really know how best to describe what I'm planning, I guess. Like everything I do, it'll be sort of eclectic.

And fabulous, damnit. It'll be fabulous.

I'll keep you posted.