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what a brilliant idea - when you don't know what to do... — LiveJournal
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what a brilliant idea
From one of my mailing lists:

I always haul this out whenever anyone yearns for more storage space as a brilliant idea to which I wish I could lay claim, but I can't: attribution has to go to Elaine Almquist aka The Bag Lady aka By The Bay Creations:  She had an 18" wide shelf put up in EVERY SINGLE ROOM in her house about 18" below the ceiling on all four walls  or so she tells it). Even if you are tall and your ceilings are low, these shelves are unlikely to get in the way of your head  (who stands that close to the wall?) and it provides a huge amount of extra shelf space.  If you're particular about looks, and you're handy  (or know someone who is), you could build little cabinets to about the same dimensions, in the same place - that way the mess would be out of the way.  It may well be a useful insulator too - after all, aren't all the leaky bits in the corners?

We are blessed with high ceilings and cursed with almost no closets in a house where the two human residents are under 5'7".  An 18"x18"x however-long-the-walls-are cabinet/shelf is a huge amount of space.  I'd have room for linens and towels and extra toilet paper, and books and art supplies and ooh! the stash I could put away in there!  I'm going to have to suggest it to Wolfie.  We could even put in a false bottom and set small cans in the bottom of the cabinets for lighting (because I'd much rather have cabinets than shelves -- much tidier looking).  Even a couple of wall's worth of cabinets would make a huge difference in our storage capabilities.  And it'd only look a little bit like the inside of a Winnebago.

i feel: creative creative

16 trips or shoot the rapids
crayolaab From: crayolaab Date: August 29th, 2004 12:31 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Very interesting concept. I suppose it could look really nice, too, with a little paint/stenciling/something special. That *would* be a lot of storage!
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 29th, 2004 12:52 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Our two main rooms have wide honey pine paneling -- honey pine cabinets would fit right in! You might not even really notice them, once you got used to them.
crayolaab From: crayolaab Date: August 29th, 2004 01:12 pm (UTC) (base camp)
oh, yeah, that would look really nice!
geekling From: geekling Date: August 29th, 2004 12:36 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Those one shelf running around the room always reminds me of Carl Larsen style of interior decorating. Or old swedish cottagy style if you prefer.
Allthough he'd put them a little lower.
To be seen in this painting http://www.scandinaviantreasures.com/website1/pages/CLFRIE1.htm
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 29th, 2004 12:54 pm (UTC) (base camp)
What I have in mind is similar to a plate rail, but deeper, to accomodate books and stuff.
crafterson From: crafterson Date: August 29th, 2004 12:38 pm (UTC) (base camp)
My brother-in-law did that in his bedroom when he lived at home, just a shelf for books, and the ceiling wasn't even that high. You didn't even really notice it, and it held tons! Thanks for reminding me of that, I think we should do it in our office.
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 29th, 2004 01:01 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Ex-ACT-ly. There are four closets in the whole house. One is inaccessible. One is full of back issues of National Geographic (he NEVER looks at them; if he needs source photos for artwork, he goes to the internet) and is meant for china and dishes, anyway. One holds his guns (??!!) because we don't have a safe yet. One has clothes and is really poorly designed. But there is nowhere downstairs to store, say, clean towels, or bedlinens, or extra blankets and so forth.
crafterson From: crafterson Date: August 29th, 2004 03:25 pm (UTC) (base camp)
That sounds like my house except you have TWICE as many closets as us! We have two very small closets. The one in our bedroom is my clothes and the one in the office (which is the third bedroom) has his clothes. Our son's room has no closet and I have no linen closet. I have towels and sheets in my dresser, and extra towels in a cardboard box in the office!
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 29th, 2004 09:02 pm (UTC) (base camp)
The one closet in our bedroom that does have clothes connects with the bedroom that we use as a computer room, so it's sort of a passageway/closety thing. And a PITA. The third, criminally undersized bedroom (yet not as small as the 3rd bedroom at my sister's house), which has no closet is my sewing room , since Himself got the small dining room for his workspace. (We tried sharing it. What a disaster.)
(Deleted comment)
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 29th, 2004 08:57 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Well, we're planning on putting up bookshelves anyway, so it'll look less like a Winnebago and more like a soffit, especially if we put the lighting underneath. And if we do the doors right (top hinged, to start with), they might even be invisible and really look like a soffit.
mariora From: mariora Date: August 29th, 2004 05:57 pm (UTC) (base camp)
I had shelves like that in my bedroom at home where I grew up. It was great for storing all kinds of stuff. I wish my dad was well so I could ask him to come put some up in the bedrooms here. I can't do my living room because I have a vaulted ceiling in here.

They are great!
s2go From: s2go Date: August 29th, 2004 08:42 pm (UTC) (base camp)
That is a brilliant idea. Unfortunatly, we live in an apartment so we couldn't do the cabinets, but the shelves are a definate possibility. Thanks for the thought :D

When are you going to and an Ansteorran event to Briar Patch's list? *wink*
tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 29th, 2004 09:14 pm (UTC) (base camp)
When are you going to and an Ansteorran event to Briar Patch's list? *wink*

Oh dear. That's one hell of a road trip! I think you guys should just come up to Birka instead. (And tell all your friends about the website in the meantime!)
perspicuity From: perspicuity Date: August 29th, 2004 10:35 pm (UTC) (base camp)
it's very hobbit like, but given that my apt has central air ducting similar to this, i've found it does detract from the room-ness of a room... changes the shape, and such. for some rooms, that's not an issue, for some, it seems quaint and cluttered.

more power to you if you like it.

tashabear From: tashabear Date: August 29th, 2004 10:41 pm (UTC) (base camp)
Well, like I said... bookshelves beneath, with subtle lighting -- it'll look like a soffit. Or a really deep tray ceiling.
jessimuhka From: jessimuhka Date: September 2nd, 2004 09:20 pm (UTC) (base camp)
My mother is obsessed with this idea. She's never done it though, because my parents house is from the 1930's and still has the original crown moulding in some of the rooms, so the shelves wouldn't fit in so well.
I've been thinking about it for my apartment, since there seems to be so much stuff on the floor lately.
16 trips or shoot the rapids