March 2018

Spring clean

Can you believe that it already springs? We can’t either! We’ve sprung forward and the days already feel much brighter and lighter. Why not translate that feeling in your home? By now we’re sure you’re already looking forward to some fun summer projects. Now is the perfect time to do some spring cleaning to make room for the new. Keep reading for our tips and tricks to purge, clean and refresh your home this weekend!


Everyone dreads going through all their stuff and doing a good purge, but it is 100% necessary. Are you really going to wear those jeans you bought 10 years ago? Your closet is a good place to start when you start your purge. We will echo what many organizational experts have said before us and this is to have a keep, donate and toss pile. For the items, you decide to keep organize them by season and stow away those that are currently out of season. The bags that you can vacuum the air out of like these Space Bags from Ziplock are fantastic to help you store clothing without taking up much room. How about that food processor you got for Christmas that you’ve only used once. It’s probably time for it to find a new home. Unused kitchen appliances and gadgets take up a lot of valuable real estate in your cupboards. If you haven’t used it for years, you should consider giving it away. One of your friends might love it!


Let’s face it, there’s a lot of things that need cleaning in your home, but there will always be a few that get overlooked or neglected. Your drapes and rugs are probably one of them. Yes, they are a bit of a pain to remove, but they also need some TLC. Wash or dry clean your drapes and shampoo or steam your rugs. You will be very surprised how dirty those get! Don’t forget to also clean your sofa upholstery. You’ve spent many days curled up there this past winter with your favorite cushions and throws, so it also needs a good clean! Make sure to use the appropriate cleaner for the upholstery on your sofa. Carefully read the labels so you don’t do any damage!


Now that you’ve done some purging and cleaning, it’s time to give your home a good refresh. Those cushions, throws, and drapes you just cleaned? Why not swap them out for a few months for something different. Since they are not huge items (in price and size), you can easily update a few spaces in your home. Add a little bit of fun to your rooms by adding a splash of color or a new texture or pattern. Geometric patterns are back and pastel ice cream colors are also popping in. We like simple patterns like this Dash Black and White pillow from CB2 or how about a new throw like the Muuto ripple in a spring-inspired green available at Espace d.?  Need a few storage ideas? How about some modern baskets like the small grid from Ferm Living or the Muuto restore storage basket in multiple wool colors, great for newspapers and magazine, their concrete circular bowl can act as a catch-all on your coffee table? Feeling really ambitious might we suggest heading over to Ikea and start designing a custom PAX closet or storage system that will house all those shoes, dedicate exactly the right amount of space for hanging and folded clothes, and for us jewelry lovers you can add pull out accessories drawers for all your earrings, bracelets, necklaces, belts, scarves, watches……….. definitely on my to-do list this year!

What will you purge, clean and refresh this spring? Let us know with the hashtag #area3springcleaning


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The Designer Nursery

Welcoming a tiny human to the world is quite exciting, but designing a room for your first child can be a daunting task. Amongst all the other things you are preparing for, creating a room for them should not be the most stressful. Before you invest a lot of money into this new room, take a couple minutes to arm yourself with these helpful tips. We hope that this will help you design a room that grows with your baby – saving you time and money in the long run!

Choose a Style, not a Theme

Although it seems like a lot of fun, going to the Disney store and picking up every possible Princess item is probably not the best idea. Yes, a themed room can be a lot of fun, but will it grow well with your child? Probably not, especially if you have a second one. We suggest choosing a style and not a theme. A good place to start is to decide on furniture finishes. Whether you go all white or a wood tone, keep it consistent. Also, try and stick to one feature color – a gender-neutral one is always a good choice. You can use this color on one wall as a focal point or have it in the textiles you choose. When choosing an interior paint, make sure to look for one with low or no VOCs such as the Natura paint from Benjamin Moore to ensure that your newborn isn’t breathing in any harsh chemicals. To add a bit of whimsy and fun to the space, choose a geometric pattern! Simple patterns such as stripes or dots and many other Scandinavian inspired prints are a good way to go. One of our favorite neutral lines is Ollie + Lime available at Westcoast Kids. At our recent project Berkley Village we used this black and white bedding line along with a grid wallpaper from Ferm Living and Ikea furniture for a modern gender neutral nursery. Other fun ideas include an alphabet, animal, transit or nature concept. If you keep it simple with a decorative wall lamp, framed posters, or toss cushion it will be easy to change as your child grows.

Be Creative with Storage

Have you ever noticed that the tiniest people need the most stuff? From toys to diapers, clothes to other gear, the stuff babies need is endless. The challenge is to find ways to store it because chances are, you don’t have a lot of extra room to spare. Getting creative may be the way to go! Wall shelves can be a great solution as they are out of the reach of children, but are accessible to you. Install them near your changing station and add some bins and baskets for convenient storage of changing essentials. Hangers in a closet probably isn’t useful at this time, so add some hanging closet storage instead that make storing tiny clothes much easier. These SKUBB organizers or TROFAST line from IKEA are very inexpensive options. If you have the room, consider finding a chest or shelving unit that you can add a cushion top too. Not only is this good storage for toys, but also doubles as a seat.  Ouef is a modern eco-friendly children’s furniture line. We think their XL station is a clever multi-purpose solution. It can be secured to their Merlin 6-drawer dresser and doubles as a shelving unit, once the diaper years are done. Hang on the wall as a shelf or use as a large tray for storing baby toiletries. The mini library shelving unit can be configured and used to whatever child or baby needs (this could also look great in a family room). How about a pegboard for the nursery to hang or bin all those small items? We like the Cambria – Peg Board by Gautier Studio.

Leave Room to Grow

Before you go out and stuff the room full of furniture, think about what you will need long-term. While the room is a nursery you will need a crib, a nursery chair and a place to change diapers, but these pieces will not permanently reside in the room once your child grows up. Think about the space that you have. By putting in a changing table, will you have space for a toddler bed in a few years? Why not consider a change table that doubles as a dresser with a removable top? When buying a crib you might want to consider one that converts into a toddler bed. A few worth looking at is the Babyletto Hudson 3- in-1-crib,  Ikea’s SUNDVIK, GULLIVER or lastly the Ouef Perch toddler bed can become a bunk bed as your child grows and wants a new adventure and sleepovers?

How will you create a room that grows with your baby? Let us know with the hashtag #area3babyroom

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