Bigger on the Inside

I turned my bedroom into the friggin’ TARDIS. Somehow with all of this rearranging and shelf-installing, I now have loads of extra space. I made my room bigger on the inside! Let me take you on the grand tour. First stop: my photo studio.

Ragdoll-free zone.

I have the table all set up and ready to go! All of the clamps are in place, the PVC pipe frame is nearby ready to be assembled, the sheet and spare extension cords are stored in the flat bin under the table (the one that used to block my dresser) and I even found room for Sven! All I need to do is move the table out of the way and stick Sven against the wall, open the curtains and it’s photo time! Granted I haven’t actually tried it yet, so I really don’t know HOW I would move the table, but theoretically it’s possible (I really wish I could find a folding table that would work with the lights, but so far no luck).

My dehumidifier has plenty of room around the vents both under the table and in front of the closet so it won’t catch things on fire, AND it doubles as a platform for my one non-clamping lamp.

Look what else I managed to fit in here – my spinning wheel! Maybe I’ll actually get to spin on it someday now that it’s not exiled in the garage where I’m too afraid to touch it because of all the spiders that live out there.

Surprisingly, I have only been creeped out by having a mannequin in my bedroom once, and that was after watching “The Angels Take Manhattan,” so as long as I don’t watch too many weeping angel episodes of Doctor Who I should be able to sleep peacefully.

In front of the photo studio area is the majority of my crafting storage.

I can actually find everything!

See that shelf way up near the ceiling that only has a yellow ball on it? I don’t have anything to put there! That’s EXTRA space!! There are not enough exclamation marks in the world to express how happy this makes me!!! It means I can get MORE YARN.

The shelves that actually do have things on them contain my blocking and sewing supplies, photo props, extra light bulbs and what not. The poster board I use for backgrounds in the light box are tucked away neatly behind the giant cedar chest. The cube drawers are all full of yarn.

There is still no elegant way to store a stability ball, but at least it’s really easy to move when I need to get into the chest, and my cat no longer thinks it’s going to swoop down on her from above and carry her off to its nest to feast on her entrails.

I tried my best to accommodate my cat in my new room.

The cat walk may still need some work.

I basically tried to make stairs for her, because she’s getting old. It’s hard to see from this angle, but the white plastic drawers where I keep my nightly reading is meant to be the first step. This leads to the narrow shelf with her food on it, which leads to the top of the yarn storage with her bed. Originally the shelf above all of that had her bed, but she didn’t seem to be a fan of turning around and jumping onto that shelf, so I moved some more yarn cubes there instead. She still seems to prefer to sleep on MY bed no matter where I stick hers. I guess I’ll just have to get used to washing my comforter more frequently.

Beneath the cat walk is a lot more craft supply storage.

There’s still a shelf looming over my head while I’m in bed, but the shelf is full of nice squishy yarn contained in nice squishy bins, so if there’s an earthquake I’m a lot less likely to die!


This angle displays the WALL OF YARN very nicely. Almost all of those cubes are full of yarn! And I can reach all of it SO EASILY! I even have it sorted by name and each bin labeled so I can find things!

My air purifier/fan is located precisely where I need it to prevent me from melting at night, and it’s on a rolling cart of drawers, so it’s easily movable AND provides extra storage space.

More drawers!

You can also see half of the result of my Tetris breakthrough in this photo. There are drawers under my bed! In fact, that’s the only thing under my bed, there’s more room on top of those drawers and between them if I ever need extra space to stash things. It’s also a nice hangout for my cat after a nice long scratching session on her scratching slope. Both the slope and the rolling cart of drawers are easily moved when I need to get to that second drawer under the bed.

The door area stayed mostly the same except I have all my knits stored in the cedar chest now and my earring holder got moved behind the door where it’s more accessible.

I can put on earrings AFTER I get out of bed now. Weird.

The bookshelf is tucked neatly in a corner and has all of my necessary books on it.

Those books are all MINE.

I do still keep some books in the garage, but only the ones I don’t need frequent access to, like all those non-fiction accounts of epidemics that are really interesting and I’m not ready to let go of yet, but have nothing to do with yarn. That left enough space on the shelves to store some of my spinning and needle felting supplies (which could easily be moved to an empty shelf or drawer if I get more books.

The last of my cat accommodations fit nicely underneath the wall of yarn.

Why must you lock yourself in my room Annabelle? I thought you liked going outside…

There’s still plenty of room for me to walk to get to the yarn, books, and my bed, and the litter box and water fountain are totally accessible for the cat.

Oh look, it’s the second half of my Tetris breakthrough. There are two more drawers under my bed!

There are no more shawls hanging on my necklace rack, only necklaces.

It’s almost like I treasure my handknits.

Now here’s the real surprise. There is no more mess in the closet!

No monsters here.

I thoroughly cleared out my clothing. Anything I didn’t like anymore or was too worn out was donated. Anything that was even marginally too small, but something I still wanted was put into a bin in the garage (on the off-chance I lose weight and they fit me again/all my other clothes are too big and I can’t afford to get new ones). Any clothes that were out of season were put in storage as well, to be rotated back in as the seasons change. After all of that I was left with a pitiful amount of clothing I can wear, but I’m unemployed now so WHO CARES. Besides, look at all that space! My laundry basket even fits in there!

My folded t-shirts fit nicely on the shelf underneath my shorter tops, and my folded pants fit on the bottom shelf.

Drawer organizers are magical.

My socks, underwear, bras and various accessories all fit in the drawer organizers on the middle shelves, and my shoes have been pared down to a manageable stack of boxes. There was even room for my winter clothes bin on the top shelf.

Aside from all of the yarn storage, my second favorite thing in my new room is that huge cedar chest.

Give me a few years and this thing will be full.

Thanks to more drawer organizers all of my handknits can be arranged neatly within the mildly moth-repellent cedar walls. I still keep the larger things inside a plastic bin within the chest though, just to be safe. There is so much room for more knits in here it makes me giddy! I plan to FILL this chest one day, and it will be glorious.

Last but not least, is my new office.

See? There’s no way this could have fit in that room. It had to move.

It’s still a bit cramped, but it’s no worse than it was in my bedroom and at least now it’s not competing for space with my crafts. The filing cabinet has SO much more room to grow! I completely cleared out the little filing cabinet I had, but it’s still hanging out by the kitchen (just out of frame) if I need more room again.

The cats have really been enjoying the new office though. You’ll notice I left the top shelves of the desk completely empty except for the printer. The cats love to walk from the top of their cat tower, along the top of the desk, behind the plastic drawers on top of the filing cabinet, to the top of the bookshelf. They want to know why we didn’t do this sooner. I’m honestly shocked there isn’t a cat in this shot, someone must have been sleeping on the job.

You know one of the greatest things about my new room? It actually looks nice. And my office isn’t half bad either.

17 thoughts on “Bigger on the Inside

    • The PVC pipes are the frame for my light box. I have lots of different sizes cut so I can have lots of different options. At some point in the near future I’ll do a post about how the light box goes together 🙂

      • Oh awesome. I’m really looking forward to that post about the lightbox. Right now I have to wait for it to be a gorgeous day so I have enough light to take photos of anything, which is what I’m going to do in a few minutes once I wake up more.

  1. You may have inspired me to do some rearranging in my room (which is both bedroom and office). Can’t be anything major, as the big stuff has to stay where it is. But the small stuff could use some de-cluttering and rearranging. I’ve been looking at it and thinking that for awhile, but now I just might be energized and inspired enough to actually do something about it.

  2. Wow, your TARDIS makeover is truly an inspiration! My lover and I just moved back into an old bedroom that got used for storage in our absense, and I still haven’t managed to tame the space or the stuff yet. Watching your transformations from start to finish gives me hope that I can do it too!

  3. Wow, impressive! Right now, my family (husbeast and 20 month old Bebe) are living in a 900 ft 2-bedroom apartment. It’s taken me 2 years and countless re-arranges to figure out how to have most of our stuff present in a way that doesn’t make us look like hoarders. I think I’ve got it, though.

    • Yeah, the three humans and four cats live in a 1000 square foot house. Mom keeps lamenting about how “cluttered” the house always looks even when it’s spotless compared to other friends’ and family members’ houses. I keep having to remind her that the houses she’s comparing ours to are at least twice the size of ours, so they have much more room to spread out. We don’t have that luxury.

  4. Ooooo! Rearrangement glory! I did the exact same thing with the paper doll room and furniture when trying to plan for my new apartment–it’s the best idea ever!

    Sigh. I actually just finished cleaning said apartment. It’s been a while. The kitchen floor took ages to scrub to being back to perfectly clean. Clearly, it needs scrubbing more than once every 2.5 months. Lame. I wonder if I should dust one day? There isn’t much that actually gathers dust in this place–yay wire shelving!

    Anyway, very well done, Nikki! your Tardis/tetris room is an amazing feat of storage and pretty!

    • Yes! One more person to add to the paper doll count. WE ARE NOT ALONE.

      I dunno, I think scrubbing floors every 2 months or so sounds perfectly reasonable…I know WE have to dust more often, but that’s my fault for being horribly allergic to dust mites. Your mileage may vary.

    • LOL is it sweet wine? 😉

      The trick I’ve found for organizing is to know what functions you want the space to serve FIRST, and then design the room around serving those functions as efficiently as possible. I’m a bit of a productivity geek so various things tend to influence how I personally go about it like:

      Lean manufacturing:
      -my mother is a Lean trainer, so while I have never studied any Lean stuff myself, I am certainly influenced by it.

      Getting Things Done:
      – this system is geared towards efficiently, well, getting things done, but it also has some recommendations on how to set up your space to make it as easy as possible.

      Unfuck Your Habitat:
      – no nonsense and humorous approach to managing day-to-day chores and generally encouraging people not to live in filth while acknowledging that YOUR HOUSE WILL NEVER LOOK LIKE BETTER HOMES AND GARDEN. Get over it and move on with your life. Mom.

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