Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger

By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger

Cinderella wasn’t the only woman to ever have problems keeping track of her shoes. In fact most of us have a frustration over our shoe collection and our inability to keep them neatly organized.

If you are like me, you probably have the original shoebox your pumps came in, and you try hard to put them back in said box each time, before stacking it among the other boxes of various sizes and stability. This, usually, resulting in the smaller, more narrow boxes, on the bottom of the stack giving way and toppling the entire pile over. Not only does this method not work as far as keeping them organized, but it’s also impossible to either find the shoes you’re looking for and/or to even remember what shoes you own.

I start off with the best intentions. I clean up my closet and put all of my shoes in their designated cardboard cells and stack them neatly, but in a matter of a week or so, I have lost the gumption to take the time to put them away, and there is soon a jumbled heap of sneakers, pumps, wedges, mules, flip flops, etc., etc., etc. littering the bottom of my not-grandiose closet.

In light of this constant struggle, I thought it might behoove us to spend a little time discussing some shoe storage options to help us all wrangle those much beloved, but frequently neglected, footwear collections.

Weather you have a huge closet, or share a very small one with your better-half, there are lots and lots of different ways for you to store and/or display your shoes.

  • Don’t Hide Them: Instead of putting them away in the dark recesses of a closet, bring them out into the light and display them. Most of us spend a pretty penny for pretty pumps. Why not put up some floating shelves across a wall in your bedroom and actually use them as an art installation that you can also wear pieces of? Not only will this free up closet space, but it also makes the shoes easier to see and more likely to be worn.
  • Use Crates in a New Way: Stack some rustic wooden milk crates and secure them to your closet wall. Add a middle shelf to each and store your shoes in them. I love this idea for use in a mudroom as well. It’s a great way to get those muddy shoes up off the floor and put away without worrying about ruining nice shelving. The crates can also be washed down easily.
  • A Basket Comes in Handy: Flip flops are one of those shoes that are hard to store and easy to leave piled up. Use a cute basket to store them all in. You can fit a lot of these thin little summer-must-haves in a basket with a fairly small footprint that won’t take up much floor space.
  • Think Outside the Box: Try cutting PVC pipe to one foot long sections and adhering (Liquid Nails is a great adhesive for projects like this) them together in a floor to ceiling column. Store your shoes in the ‘honeycomb’ structure that is created. Again, this makes it easy to see your shoes and convenient when putting them away.
  • No Need to Have Them Exposed: Shoe cabinets have been around for many years now and work great. These storage solutions are designed to look like furniture and yet to hold numerous pairs of shoes without anyone being the wiser. Another take on this idea is to use an old china hutch in your room. You can either frost the glass to hide the trove being stored within, or, if you want to show your shoes off, but have them actually shut away, leave the glass clear. Use the bottom of the hutch to store winter sweaters or blankets and you just freed up a huge amount of closet space.
  • “Drape” Them: Place several curtain rods either in a closet or out in your bedroom and actually hang your shoes on them. This works wonderful to display and organize heels, but does leave tennis shoes, flats and even wedges to fend for themselves. However, if you have a large pump/stiletto collection, this would be a great way to show them off.

The reality is, no matter the size of your collection, nor the styles it’s composed of, everyone has shoes that can use some organizing and, with a little research and planning, be corralled.

Enjoy!

Shoes

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By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger

Windows and floors and doors, oh my! Windows and floors and doors, oh my!

We all remember a similar rhyme from childhood (lions and tigers and bears, oh my!), but now that we are adults, this revised version is probably a more accurate depiction of what scares us.

Of these three design elements, the one most often overlooked, strictly for lack of knowhow on the behalf of most home owners, are doors. Floors we see changed out, upgraded and improved frequently. Window treatment fabrication is a huge industry with products readily available in stores across the country. Doors though, are all too often utilized and forgotten, especially interior doors and doorways.

Here are five great ideas for finishing a doorway.

  • New Doors: It may seem like an obvious answer, but you’d be surprised how many people continue to live with their standard, builder-grade, hollow doors. Upgrade your doors to new 4-panel solid wood doors, and you will be amazed how they add style and dampen noise. Yes, they can be a little pricey, but higher quality doors are one of the things homebuyers recognize and will pay for.
  • Drape Your Doorway: It might sound a little Bohemian, but fabric can add great texture to a space. You can decide what kind of style you want conveyed. You may opt for a heavier velvet drape for a dramatic feel. If fresh is the message you want sent, a light airy sheer will do the job. Using a tension rod, suspend your curtain selection from the inside frame of the doorway. Utilize a curtain tieback, a piece of rope, or just a ribbon to pull the drape back and secure it to one side, making the doorway easy to pass through.
  • Leave Your Doorway Without a Door: Don’t put a door on it at all. Instead paint out the wall the door is on in an accent color and the door frame in a complimentary color to highlight it. For instance you may want to paint the wall a beautiful butter yellow and the door frame a deep purple or a lavender.
  • Change the Shape of the Opening: If you are wanting to do something a little more in-depth, and are looking for a completely new door look, you may want to hire a contractor to reshape your door. By changing the shape of the doorway from a basic rectangle to something more unique (i.e. a dormered arch, a cathedral arch, etc.) you can add interest to the space.
  • Upcycle, Recycle: Look around at salvage yards, antique stores and swap meets for a unique door (or something that can be used as a door) to give your room just the right finishing touch. You may like the idea of the barn doors that are so popular right now, or you may find a neat old door with a stain glass inset. You can even think beyond the “door frame”, and look at other items with the idea of turning them into doors. For instance, galvanized roofing material can be framed out and added to a doorway with the simple addition of some hinges.

Whatever your door situation is you can have some fun with these frequently overlooked, yet necessary, aspects of your home. You’re only limited by your imagination. Enjoy!

doors

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Mirror, Mirror on the Wall…

March 15, 2016

By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger We all know the line, ‘Mirror, mirror on the wall, who’s the fairest of them all?’ No matter what the answer returned by the all-knowing reflective oracle is to that question, the unmistakable effectiveness of a mirror to add detail, form and function to a room is a sure thing. Mirrors can […]

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Hiring a Designer Will Save You Money

February 16, 2016

By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger When homeowners are faced with the need to decorate, design, build or remodel homes, the first thing they decide is if they can afford to do so. Once they factor in the cost to hire professional contractors, permitting, materials, etc. their budget may be tighter than expected and hiring a professional interior […]

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Not One, but Two to Color Your Year!

January 19, 2016

By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger Wrong again!  We’ve been wrong about the Color of the Year before, but this year, we not only guessed the color wrong, but also the number of colors that would be named. In November each year, Kelly DuByne and I like to take a shot at guessing which color Pantone will name […]

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Centering in on the Holiday Décor

December 15, 2015

By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger I LOVE to check things off of lists!  I appreciate the finality of the act and my holiday decorating is no exception.  Whether actually on paper, or just a mental list, I have definitive areas of my home I want to decorate and, when they are completed, I CHECK, CHECK, CHECK them […]

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Our 2016 Color of the Year Predictions

November 17, 2015

By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger Marsala, Radiant Orchid, Emerald, Tangerine Tango, Honeysuckle–Sounds like a wonderful garden party, doesn’t it?  Well these are much more than aspects of some well-planned soiree.  These are just some of the Pantone Color of the Year ‘queens’ of the past. Each year, around this time, the designers of the world sit on […]

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The Ups and Downs of Stairs

October 20, 2015

By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger There are few things that add impact to a person’s perception of a home’s value like stairs do. Whether it’s the stairs leading up to the front door or interior stairs from one floor to the next, they speak volumes about the care and maintenance of the residence. Think about the last […]

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Cabinets—Where to Begin?

September 15, 2015

By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger Everything, including the kids’ snacks, the everyday dinnerware, grandma’s gravy boat, the laundry detergent, bath towels, blow-dryers, and on and on and on, need a place to be housed. That’s right! We as consumers have a huge amount of ‘stuff’ to be stored. Walk into any home’s kitchen, laundry room, bathroom, etc. […]

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Plan Your Remodel Like A Pro: Schedule, Budget, Love It!

July 21, 2015

By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger Couples start to plan for their weddings at least a year in advance.  They select photographers, florists, caterers, the officiant, seamstresses, tux rental shops, D.J.s, etc. for a single day event.  They worry and fret about every little detail, yet when it comes to major construction on their homes people often times […]

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