Friday, September 28, 2012

An Announcement: E-Design

Over the past year we've helped a lot of friends and family with designing spaces in their homes.  Because these people are scattered throughout the country, we've been utilizing e-design boards to help them develop the look they want in each room.  We've helped some of these people add accessories or rework the layout of existing rooms, and for others, we've had the chance to completely start from scratch and create entirely new spaces.

Because of the fun we've had in working with our friends and families, we've decided to offer these e-design services formally through 1201 north.  Our e-design services will now include:
  • A preliminary consultation to determine your style and the look you want to achieve in your space
  • A design board and layout plan with source list of all items 
  • Assistance with placement of items to achieve the finished look
  • For those interested, a thorough sweep of your local Craigslist and Furnishly to get the look-for-less  
If you are interested in e-design services, please contact us at  We're so excited to work with you!

Here's a sampling of some of our completed e-design projects:

A feminine bedroom in California:

A fresh, coastal family room in DC.  This friend wanted us to accessorize and stage the room using her existing furniture and layout:

A sophisticated girls' nursery in Chicago:

Monday, September 24, 2012

Julie's Living Room: TV Wall Art Gallery (After)

We finally got around to finishing up the TV gallery wall in my (Julie) living room.  As a refresher, here's what this wall looked like before:

I cobbled together some art that we had around the apartment, and now the wall looks like this:

Hanging the pictures was fairly easy.  Sarah and I traced each frame onto newspaper, cut out the shapes, and positioned them on the wall using painters tape until we were happy with the layout. 

We stepped back, admired our work, and realized that my apartment looked like the home of a deranged serial killer.  

I then hammered in the nails while the newspaper was still on the wall.  This ensured that the frames would be correctly spaced once we took the newspaper down and got to hanging.

View from dining room
View from couch
I tried to stick to black, gold, and white frames and white mats.  The picture in the bottom left still needs a new mat, which I'll eventually get around to buying.  Has anyone ever painted a mat before? I picked up this print on the street for $15.  I thought it was original art, but later realized it is a Monet poster...lovely.  I really like the frame and print, but hated the mat (it's not easy to see in the picture, but the mat was a marbled beige color).

I decided to paint the mat since it's a bit of an irregular size and I didn't want to spend the money to have a custom mat cut.  Using a knife, I removed the paper backing, being careful not to damage the mat.

I then lifted the interior prongs with a flathead screwdriver, removed the mat, and got to painting.

I used regular latex paint that I had leftover from another project, but you could easily use acrylic or any other white craft paint.  I'm so happy I took the time to do this-- you really can't tell that it's been painted!

I was worried that this many frames would turn our living room into an art gallery, but I'm happy with how the wall turned out, and I do think the frames help ground the massive TV.

Happy Monday! Stay tuned for an exciting announcement later this week!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Wait, nevermind.

Did we say we were over Craigslist? Well...we lied.  Furnishly was like the mysterious new guy in your English class who momentarily distracts you from your boyfriend.  Until you realize that your boyfriend is the best.

Okay I don't know where I was going with that, but the point is I (Julie) just picked up this amazing sofa off Craigslist for a STEAL.  We're talking a $4000 sofa for less than $1000 kind of steal.  Forreal.

I don't know if it was the batting of my eyelashes or that I schlepped to their house in a monsoon to see it or the crazy ass Jedi mind trick I played on them, but this beauty will be in my living room come Saturday.  Did I mention that it is crazy comfortable, in perfect condition, and deep enough for my very large husband? This might be the most epic. Craigslist. find. ever.

For those wondering, the sofa is the Presidio Sofa from Williams-Sonoma with their luxe velvet upholstery in Espresso.  Once we get it into our apartment (there is a UHaul involved in this operation...yikes) I'll post some non-Craigslist pictures.

In the meantime, we'll leave you with a little espresso velvet eye candy:

all images via DecorPad
 Roses are red. Violets are blue. Craigslist, we still REALLY love you.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Goodbye, Craigslist...Hello, Furnishly

How do we say this nicely?  New York Craigslist absolutely sucks.  Pages upon pages of crappy, overpriced furniture.  No, we do not want to buy your old IKEA desk with the leg that your cat scratched up last week.  Thanks though.

For decor junkies like us, the state of New York Craigslist has been a constant source of frustration and is the reason why we've become obsessed with Housing Works and flea markets.  Well, the universe did us one better yesterday when it introduced us to Furnishly, a new website (started in Chicago) that, like Craigslist, lists local secondhand furniture, but, unlike Craigslist, requires its furniture to meet a "curation quality requirement." Music to our ears.

Really, this is where the problem both ends and begins.  Because now that we can find furniture we like online, we want everything.  A few gems from the New York site:

Oh, handmade Egyptian wool rug in mint condition for $390, we love you.  If you were 8x10 instead of 5x8, we'd be having this conversation in person right now.

Ballard designs "vintage vogue queen sleeper" (sleepers are a MUST HAVE in tiny New York apartments!) in great shape for $750.  The name alone makes us want to buy it.  

CB2 marble top side table, $60.  You'd pay at least double if you went to CB2 and bought it.

Two of these glass top end tables for $20.  We'd slap a coat of paint on them in a punchy color and add a little fun to a room.  

Thank you Chi-town for bringing cute, affordable vintage furniture to NYC! 

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Sarah's Living Room: Fun With Maps

With so many people traveling last weekend, it seems like a good time to talk about the use of maps in design.  Maps can be a great (and cheaper) alternative to traditional artwork and can be used in a variety of other ways:

Maps can work with almost any style, from traditional to modern, and I (Sarah) decided to give one a go in my living room.  

Awhile ago, Devin and I stumbled into a vintage map store in Boulder and had a full nerd-out session that included buying a two-page 1902 map of Puerto Rico (spelled Porto Rico at the time--I think this was the main reason that I had to have the map).  I had the map framed but then never found anywhere to put it once we moved to Brooklyn. 

This weekend I realized that the only way to combat my huge TV is with huge artwork, so the map came out of the basement and went up on my wall.  It still feels a little strange because one of my major pet peeves is artwork hung too high on walls, but I think the TV grounds the map so that it makes sense. I do like having something else to look at in that corner, so for now the map will stay.

I also love having the map there because Puerto Rico is such an important part of our family.  It's always great to be able to incorporate items into design that aren't just pretty but also have meaning.

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