Friday, July 17, 2015

The Interior Forest


One year artificial Christmas trees were cheap and plentiful. A seasonal visit to the Display Warehouse afforded me a tour of a generous space dotted with fake noble fir and other faux conifers. I liked being there, and have mused about filling one of the upstairs rooms with a collection of undecorated trees and sleeping on the floor. Kids would love it. I could have trees for the alley asking early in January.

A current painting project displaced a number of tower-shaped items into a nearly empty room. Two tall speakers, a seven-drawer dresser with a tiny footprint, and a folding screen all stand like domestic sentinels against a painted floor and minimalist window coverings. A recent exercise in seasonal wardrobe editing generated a five-high stack of legally acquired industrial dairy crates. I realized I had inadvertently created a variant of the very forest I sought. Once the project is over and the space restored, I might try a spending a night on the floorscape.

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More after the jump.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

As Needed


Hot weather and welcome but pressing demands on my time have made it desirable to simplify daily maintenance. I like to leave the house in good order. A Seattle summer day runs from five AM to nine PM. Artificial light is seldom necessary, so, as in the old days when candles and kerosene lamps were stored in the pantry to be cleaned every morning, I put lamps away for the season.

Pillows are a minor bother. It simplifies bed making and hot weather lounging to store them in a closet. The collection lives in neutral-colored covers and migrates wherever it is wanted.

I stow folding Award Winning director’s chairs in the pantry in lieu of vacuuming around a room’s worth of legs. 

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More after the jump.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Michael's Monolayer


A brief visit to the apartment of an art student with a Kiplingesque nickname opened my eyes to a new strategy for managing inventory. Michael lived out of a large suitcase. He had simply set a mattress on the floor, strewn bedding over it, and worn and dropped his wardrobe as it fell.

The arrangement momentarily stimulated my inner nag, but it was so interesting I just observed. I see no dysfunction: laundry day would clean up the floor well enough to vacuum, and then the leaves would fall again.

I thought of Michael when I was sorting my wardrobe the other day. It’s a favorite meditation, and this time I had an expanse of bare floor in front of the chest that holds most of my clothes. Various windrows of t-shirts, trousers, and shirts were developing, and I realized that was the easiest way to survey inventory I had found. Casual piles turned up unexpectedly good associations of color and texture. I simply photographed them with iMini for a digital file of what to wear.

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More after the jump.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Clean And Cool


The recent heat wave reminded me that dust aggravates the stress of hot weather. It’s important to be able to relax when the temperature is high and air conditioning non-existent. The irritants and allergens that make up even a light layer of dust tax energies just when they’re needed most. An air filter is as useful as a fan.

Hot weather is yet another argument in favor of keeping a simple interior that’s easy to manage competently.

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More after the jump.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Bandanna


Saturday brought a round of mowing desperately dry sections of lawn. They’d been easy to thatch, and a round of raking had brought up bushels of dry moss and trampled stems. Sometime in the last year, I had efficiently discarded my stash of dust masks and respirator. I whined at the in-house field scientist who suggested I dampen a cottons scarf and tie it around my nose.

Did. Worked. Bandanna tucked into neck of shirt. Hat holds back knot in place. Bandanna nice flowers so as not to alarm the neighbors. Learned to gesture rather than smile at passersby. Mask cool, comfortable, better-smelling than safety gear, less bulky to store, and multi-purpose.

The thing was very effective. When I took it off to rinse my forehead and eyes, my nose was clean and I started sneezing. By the way, the lawn is still dead and dry, but looks cared for. The Capitol Hill block party is coming up in a couple of weeks. I like to have the front bank looking good for the countless visitors who stroll past.

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More after the jump.