One of my all-time favorite aphorisms is that Victorian era gem that shines from its facets of order, efficiency, and thrift:
A place for everything, and everything in its place.
I consistently use this idea to recalibrate the way I see my home and studio. My wife and I are work-from-home freelancers; we're in our house 90% of the week and share it with our very active toddler and three cats, working and playing and cooking three meals a day, so we make a lot of mess. Without direct intervention, entropy reigns supreme, with total anarchy its final goal. Thus I constantly ask myself when I put something down: Is that where it lives? If the answer is no, put it away for real.
Well, let's piggyback off the idea of "a place for everything" to deliberately use our physical space to make good habits.
In order to be your best, you need to make the most out of your mornings. More than anything else, how you begin your day sets the template for how the rest of it will go. Here are nine things you can, and should, do every single day to be your most productive self.
1. Make Your Bed (2:oo)
When this becomes first thing you do after you wake up, you accomplish so much more than flat blankets and straighten pillows. First, you immediately achieve a goal; the very first thing that happens during your whole day is a success. Secondly, though it might sound dramatic, you've ordered chaos. What was a mess is now straight and clear
As anyone who has worked in a high volume coffee establishment will tell you––and I am one of those people––keeping coffee equipment clean is a huge job. And while a professional shop has to maintain its equipment with a daily regimen of daily cleaning, descaling, urnexing and polishing, what I realized when I came home from my coffee shop was that my personal coffee equipment was some of the LEAST attended to items I had in my kitchen. I think for many people, coffee is such a utilitarian part of life, it is easy to lose track of how many brews your machine/grinder/kettle/aeropress may have gone through. And of course, coffee is not
Floating shelves can be built in a myriad of different ways and with any lumber you can get your hands on, but if you’re buying blind shelf supports for each shelf, the amount of money spent can add up quickly. Enter: this inexpensive and rustic option for building floating shelves will materials you likely have on hand in your shop. This is a relatively simple project and it can be completed in an afternoon for less than $10 in materials. There are three simple parts of the process to making these floating shelves.
I have this one tall ceramic thermos with no handles that tends to heats up so much when I pour coffee in that it's barely functional. My girlfriend knit an adorable cozi sleeve for it but unfortunately it stretches out too much and just slides right off. Which brought us to our next solution: leather.
When I was younger, my mom always gave us a list of chores to do before we left town for an extended weekend. At the time, I didn't fully understand why my clothes needed to be put away or why all the dishes needed to be washed if we weren't going to be home, I just wanted to get to the hotel so I could jump in the pool. Luckily for me, my older brother is an absolute neat freak and he would get up early and finish most of the tasks on the checklist before I even got out of bed. Fast forward 20+ years, and I completely understand why my mom always made us complete that list of chores before we left town. Being older and slightly wiser than my 8-year old self, now I make sure to always do these 11 things before departing for my next adventure:
Your bachelor pad. Your family home. That apartment with all the architectural detail and the amazing view. Wherever you live, houses get messy. And they stay that way, until you clean them. When your plans to let someone inside ends up happening before your hopes of getting your home back to normal, then it's time to clean it. Quickly.
You don't have the time to deep clean and scrub, so make the little bit you have count. If you're smart and focused, you can pull it off in the running time of your favorite record.
Indoor plants in your home are a no-brainer: they bring the outside in, improve air quality, provide lots of natural color and texture, and encourage you to take an investment in the spaces you spend your time. They literally (and figuratively) add life to your home. Learn how to rock the green look with these six guy-friendly decor ideas. No floral wallpaper need apply.1: Mix and match. (pictured above) Go freestyle! Hit your nearest nursery and select a few different varieties. A few ideas include: palms, ferns, Massangeana, and rubber tree. Make sure to ask them about any special care requirements for each one of them (prior to
How do you feel about the term, "man cave?" I have mixed feelings on it myself. One the one hand - like "girlfriend" or "foodie" - it's easy to use it colloquially since everybody has a general sense of what you mean when you say it. On the other, I haven't really worked out for myself all the connotations that come with its use, since it sometimes seems to me like it implies that one can't be a man outside of his man cave (or at least that its a necessary domicile of rejuvenation), Or that the rest of the home is then outside of his purview. Or, all spaces for men must be themselves a cave, involving sports memorabilia and beer signs. In that way, I mostly see the term "man cave" as potentially condescending. Now obviously that's a drastic oversimplification, but I've been thinking about the word recently a fair amount.
Halloween is over which means we're officially heading into the colder months of the year. And if you live in a place where people have an accent that sounds anything like this wonderful woodworker, you'll likely be in need of a quality coat storage this winter.
Every home has those horizontal surfaces where it's all too easy to let stuff gather. They're just lying there, all flat and empty, asking to be filled with things that could likely go in they're proper home if they only had one.
In my house, it's the half-wall between the landing and the stairs. So I certainly know that when your countertops, desks, and other flat surfaces are continually filled with mail, errands, and other "to do" related goodies, it's time for an official solution. And since horizontal spaces just aren't working, you gotta go vertical.
It’s time for some quality design inspiration ideas. Whether you’re looking for interior design, furniture ideas, or architectural inspiration here are three uniquely incredible spaces to get your creative juices flowing…
First of all, I LOVE good libraries. Los Angeles has a fantastic and relatively unknown one that I keep on the DL and use as my part-time workspace. But I’ve always dreamt of the joy I’d have building a tiny one like this tiny library built in upstate New York by Jason Koxvold and titled the “Hemmelig Rom” or “secret room” in Norwegian. A building like this goes
I grew up in the shadow of some major recycling nuts so it actually took awhile for me to get my rebellious nature out of my system and come back to the recycling fold. I now recycle as meticulously as I can and composting organic waste is just one more great way to do that. Stored correctly, it can be a blessing -- stored poorly, not so much.
The backyard fire pit is the hallmark of great outdoor memory-making. Where friends gather, stories are told, beers are drunk. And sure they can be as simple as a no-frills dugout, but something a little more concrete demonstrates your commitment to the intentionality of the space....
We don't like to admit it, but it's beginning to be that time of year when the things we bring into the house start to get bigger and bulkier. In the warm months, it's a bag or briefcase, your phone, and a few essentials for work, but in the cooler months, enter the coats, boots, hats, gloves, snow shovels, in addition to the magazines, mail, your keys and all the other things that come inside with you.
Summer is a good time to let things go. Have fun with friends and family -- enjoy the sunny weather. But that doesn't mean you need to let that garage go as wild as you will. With these 14 organization ideas, you can streamline your summer fun and still be sure that everything will be in place come the autumnal cleanup.
Schools are getting out and the summer is heating up across America. Rather than shell out big bucks for a high electricity bill or an AC window unit, why not try rigging up some of your own ways to keep cool in the blazing summer months?