Wednesday, August 14, 2013

24 Reader Space: Creatively Lovely Organization

Y'all know me.  I am all about colorful and creative organization and storage solutions.  They make me crazy happy and bottom line, it is just my jam.  And when that super beautiful organization is created by hand, on a budget.  Oh boy.  My heart races.  I get googly eyed.  I happy dance. I know the impact that good storage can have on day to day lifestyles.  But imagine that important storage, looking all lovely and pretty and created on a creative budget.  That is life changing.  That brings functionality and happiness.  And my friend Diane from In My Own Style, {who I just met with with giant smiles at Haven}, does DIY storage like no other.  Seriously.  Gaga.

Diane and I would be real life BFF's if we lived closer.  We are two peas in a pod.  So I invited her here today to share some of her incredible projects and inspiration with you.  I can't wait for you to meet her and fall in love with her like I did.  Here she is now.

What is the main function of the space?

"The space is what I fondly call, my studiooffice.  It is part creative space and part business office.  On the floor plan of the house - it was the "formal living room".  When we moved into the house, I knew I would never use a formal living room, so I made it into a place of my own.

I have a work table against one wall with a wall of organization that I call my "Creative Wall".  I like giving names to my stuff.  It holds my tools, giftwrap, and mini-photo studio.  Under it, are two identical sideboards that I placed side-by-side and placed a hollow core door on to create a large work table.

The shelves that holds my colorful gift wrapped covered magazine files were made by placing a wood shelving unit on top of vintage wood library file cabinet.  I painted them the same color so they would look like one large piece of furniture.  Across from the "creative wall" I have a big armoire where I store all my crafting and creative supplies in the room.

I painted a "curbside find" desk high gloss white and placed in the middle of the room so I can see everything I may need at a glance or the swivel of my desk chair."

Any superstar tips for keeping it organized?

"It has taken some trial and error to get to the level of organization I have.  My best tips would be to keep down clutter - if it doesn't have a function - out it goes.  I used to keep everything that inspired me on a big board, but I found it just became clutter and I never looked at it.  I only have a few tchotchkes on two IKEA shelving units in the room.  Everything else has a function and designated place."

What items did you find were essential in organizing your space, and why?

"Labels!  I label everything.

Without labels - boxes, files, anything that is stored will eventually get unorganized.  When you see a label you know exactly where something is.  They make it easier to return items as well as finding them and that is the key to organization - keeping it organized.

Putting a label on everything also removes this scenario from happening: "Mom, where is _____?"  "It is right in front of you."  "Where? I don't see it?"  "On the second shelf on the left."  "I still don't see it...."  Where there is a label on everything - your kids and/or spouse can read where everything is and not have to ask."

What did you do to go the extra mile and "Make it Pretty"?

"I painted the furniture and walls white.  This helps make the space bright and sunny.  Everything else in the room is a vivid, bright or fun color.  The color pops are what makes the space come to life and add character.

To add affordable color, I used stylish gift wrap that I find at HomeGoods and TJMaxx.  It is under $3.00 a roll and can embellish just about anything from furniture to file boxes."

What items did you DIY to stay on a budget?

"Everything in the room is DIY'd, except the hardwood floor.  All of the furniture in the room was either a hand-me-down or I found it free on the curb.  I transformed every piece to fit my style with paint and new hardware."

How has this space impacted your life for the better?

"I work much more effectively now.

I have created a place to write, a place to create, and a place to store the items that I need on a daily basis to run my blog in an organized fashion.  I don't waste time looking for things as I know exactly where it all is.  Everything has its place and a label, making storing and finding things a breeze."

Why IHeart it all like crazy:

Bottom line, Diane creates storage treasures.  She finds furniture pieces from the curb, thrift stores and family, and makes them sing with hardware and paint.  Furniture can be a major expense, especially good quality furniture boasting oodles of storage.  Diane finds those diamonds in the rough, and makes them shine.  She takes everyday boxes and makes gorgeous magazine files.  She takes mis-matched furniture, and creates a cohesive space.  She uses her imagination to dream up the most magical wrapping station I have seen.  The makes her own labels and uses inexpensive papers to bring everything to life.  She is a fairy with a magical wand and I hope she continues to sprinkle her fairy dust all over blog land.

You can find many many more projects and details on Diane's blog here:

Who is feeling inspired?  No box is safe.  No piece of furniture should go unquestioned.  It is time to get creatively happy with storage.  What are you going to beautify today?

ATTENTION!!  Want to be featured in a Reader Space edition?  Have an awesome organizing story to share?  I am looking for projects that have made a positive impact to your life.  Please submit your story and photos here and I would heart to feature them right here, on the blog!!  Photos should be high resolution and unedited.  Please include a description of the project, including any costs, inspiration, and how it has changed your life and routine for the better!  Oh, and no worries my friends, we will NEVER judge "before" pictures because that just wouldn't be nice!  Only love goes on at this blog!


  1. I love the colorfully organized (and labeled) storage solutions! One day I hope to have a studio/office space in my home.

  2. This makes me wanna go home and wrap all my stuff in pretty gift wrap! It's a beautiful, functional space, and the model in the last pic looks to be enjoying it too :)

  3. We are moving soon and I am going to copy (with my own customization, of course) pretty much her whole "Creative Wall" -including her Mini Photo Studio!! Love it!!

  4. I love the Creative Wall. It looks like there is a rolled blind on the far right frame. Would you share what that is for? I'm intrigued!

    1. Hi Suzanne -

      The roller blind is part of my DIY Mini Photo Studio. It is where I take many of the photos for my blog. You can read more about it in this post.

    2. I was going to ask the same thing! Maybe just as a way to hide the clutter of notes when needed? Creative!

    3. I love the rolled blind idea for photos! I've been setting up foam core boards and while it works, it's cumbersome to store. This is such a great idea, thanks for sharing it!

  5. I love this room! Thanks for sharing. I'll bookmark Diane's blog for further inspiration :-)

  6. nice ideas!! thanks for sharing!!!

  7. I love it! Think she'll mind if I copy many of her ideas? Thanks for sharing


  8. Hi Diane! I know this is completely random but I am so excited to see someone else with the same lamp as me. Mine started out as bright pink with a bright pink and white shade. It definitely didn't work in my space, so I repainted the base. But I am struggling with the shade. I am assuming since yours looks so similar, you might have re-thrifted yours as well? Where did you find the shade? Thanks, and your room is beautiful!!

    1. Thanks Kelly -

      The lampshade was originally black. I covered it with fabric. I wrote a post about it that you can find here:

    2. Thank you for the help!

  9. Oh,my...such pretty pretties! Looks amazing. I am so jealous. I need to start earning more money so this could be my house!

  10. That is seriously cool! Diane, I love your space and how colorful and perfectly organized it is!! Bravo!!! xo Kristin

  11. Oh I love this.. the roller blind is sheer genius. so many ideas.. thanks for sharing

  12. What a great space! The wrapping paper station is so awesome!

  13. What a lovely blog article Jen. I adore your styling!

  14. So colorful! Great space with some great organizing ideas. Thanks for sharing!

  15. Wow, this looks great! You really have some fantastic ideas ! :D

  16. I love when two of my favorite bloggers meet and collaborate. Both of you have inspired me so much. I hope to share what I've done soon.

  17. Diane, you are a true genius as far as I think. I am still coveting all your redo's. And I think you have made every tiny square in of your home so perfect.

  18. Hi Diane!
    Love your rulered desk! How did you make or where did you find??


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