First, a little background.
I mentioned previously that my husband and I were intimately involved in the finish design and construction of our house. The builder's architects and engineers were responsible for the structural design, but I believe we had sixty-eight extra fee items in our contract for options and modifications. And that barely scratches the surface of the changes we made to our property. That's not counting the customizations we did after closing on the house.
And of the one hundred or so days it took to build this place, I showed up on site for approximately ninety-seven of those days. I got to know every nail and splinter. I was sick when they did the electrical wiring and I missed much of that, which I regret to this day. There's a gaping hole in my photo library.
Because of that unusually-intense involvement, we got to know the tradesmen. Our constantly-smiling lead framer in particular was not shy about approaching us and asking how we wanted things done, in those cases where there was room for interpretation on what the engineers had specified.
One day, he came up to my husband and I and asked if we wanted a completely-vaulted north wall, or only a partial vault?
It was the home-building equivalent of asking, "Do you want fries with that?!" My husband and I scratched our heads for a few minutes, and then logically concluded that we could close up the space later if we wanted to, but we couldn't open it up later, because the frame would have been set by then. Therefore, we told him to leave it open and do only a partial vault.
|Here it is after drywalling. The resulting configuration was a little bit unusual. Like, where's the other half of our ceiling pitch?!|
To start with, I knew I was going to finish this resulting vault-gap with an Elfa Platinum shelf, especially because I have Elfa Platinum in the open space above our refrigerator on the kitchen wall opposite this one. Therefore the two shelf units would cross-reference and balance each other out.
|Container Store's Elfa Platinum page had a five-star rating on one hundred product reviews. You don't see that every day. People who like Elfa like it a lot.|
|Oh no, no, no, no no. This is what the consumer market conceives of as "large storage bins". Ugh. This isn't suitable for contemporary open-shelf storage. This stuff belongs in the closet, garage, or the attic.|
|I did a whole lot of footwork trying to solve this predicament, both brick-and-mortar shopping and online shopping. Everybody had the same plastic stuff. And nothing but plastic stuff.|
|Seriously - if you search for 'large storage bin' or any related terms, virtually all of what you find is either (a) plastic or (b) not larger than a letter-sized file box! A file box isn't large!!|
|Steele Canvas Basket in Chelsea Massachusetts. |
As soon as I saw this marketing image on their homepage, I was sold. (A few of you are snickering right now, but I swear, all I was looking for was a decent large basket.)
|Do you see how the balance and cross-referencing now make sense? I have three white squares on the right (the windows) and three white squares on the left (the Steele Canvas baskets). Furthermore, they jointly suggest an artistic diagonal of the type that I talked about in this post. |
FINALLY, three years after we ordered this structural configuration along this roof-line, I have THE product that completes the space. The exact product that the space called for. This space now looks like it was always meant to be that way, rather than looking like a half-done vault.
That's the Death Star hanging in the middle. In Morse Code, the resulting shapes array spells "OJ", but we'll ignore that part.
|Vacuum cleaner parts. Vacuum cleaners are like newborn babies - they come into your house with a lot of attachments and accessories.|
|Disposable party serving ware. Paper plates, cups, forks, knives, spoons, bowls, etc.|
|Gift bags and papers, bubble wrap, and mailing supplies.|
Here's a close-up that shows how well Steele Canvas products go with Elfa Platinum:
|Now you can immediately see why I chose the Steele two-bushel carry baskets that have these wooden runners on the bottom: I plan to stain those runners the same color as my two-inch wooden blinds on the window immediately below. They don't look bad here but they'll look even better after they are color-matched. Again, cross-referencing: repetition of elements (long narrow strips of the same colored wood) convinces your subconscious mind that the whole thing is one tightly-designed unit, no matter how non-traditional it is. |
Notice also how the metal frame and grey trim pieces on the baskets echo the top track, the shelving, the brackets, and standard elements of the Elfa Platinum. These two products look like they were intentionally made for each other, in my opinion.
It also doesn't hurt that the basket canvas is virtually the same shade of cream as the wood trim in the house. It stands out from the light taupe wall color just as the trim does.