Building room for your hobbies : Weaving Studio

Just recently, I had the pleasure of meeting Leah Hersey of Jersey Girl Weaving. She’s a client of mine and when she told me about her home studio, I wanted to know more! Over tea and snacks, she told me the story of how her newly built studio was born.

Leah has always had a passion for textiles and inevitably fell in love with the art of weaving. Not quite as portable as knitting or as compact as cross-stitch, Leah soon realized that she would need space – a lot of space – to fully devote her self to this craft. After all, a real loom takes up a whole lotta floor. Enter the idea of constructing an out building and making it her full time studio!

Aptly named Jersey Girl Weaving – a throwback to her time living on the east coast – this new building has provided the space, natural light and artistic solitude that Leah was seeking.

I couldn’t resist capturing all the beautiful details of Leah’s space…

I just love all the colors and textures! The groupings of sheep create a sense of whimsy and honor Leah’s love of wool.

I know that having this new space makes Leah’s art a central focus in her life and brings her much joy.

By thinking creatively, she maximized her property and utilized her space with care and purpose.

Do you ever dream of having your own home office or studio? Where could you create this space?

Thanks to Leah for inspiring us!


Posted on August 24, 2011 at 10:20 pm
Candace Kramer | Posted in interior design, interviews, Lifestyle, Local News, Remodel, Small Space Design, stories | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Aging in Place – Advice from a Neil Kelly Designer

Last week I had coffee with Rhonda Knoche, a fabulous designer for Neil Kelly Remodelers.

The Neil Kelly Company just won 11 regional CotY (contractor of the Year) awards from the Nationals Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI). Rhonda won an award for Whole House Remodel under $250k! Kudos to Rhonda and Neil Kelly! As many of you know, I was a designer for NK  for 10 years and still think they have some of the best talent out there!

Some of their beautiful work…

Gorgeous right?

Anyway, I wanted to pick Rhonda’s brain about Universal Design , Aging in Place and local information about these issues.

Like Jane Austen says ” There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort!”

Rhonda is a CAPS designer, Certified Aging in Place Specialist or as Rhonda puts it,

“Universal Design is subtle design and appeals to those that value sustainability.”

Music to my ears!

In her last seminar, she shared with the audience her recent accident, breaking her leg and how she dealt with the physical limitations and mobility issues in her own home.

The big three items she covered in the seminar were;

1. Enter and Exiting home

2. Stairs and Ramps

3. Kitchen & Bath modifications.

Be sure to click here for all their up coming seminars.

Patrick Roden RN,PhD, has a website and blog, aginginplace.com – where he address all the issues of how to continue to live in your home throughout your maturing years, safely, independently and comfortably. He grew up living with his grandma in a multi-generational home and his impressions are truly inspiring.

Thank you Rhonda for some great ideas on living & aging gracefully in the comfort of our homes! Glad to see that your leg looks better too!


p.s. Right now in 2011 we have 70,000 centurions in 2040 there will 700,000 in the U.S.




Posted on February 10, 2011 at 1:31 pm
Candace Kramer | Posted in bathroom design, downsizing, environmental design, interior design, interviews, Lifestyle, Remodel, Resources, Uncategorized, Universal design | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Coffee Chat with Good Daughters

It is raining, as usual, so it’s the perfect time for me to clean and organize my home –  it being on the market and having weekly showings doesn’t hurt to keep me motivated either! Plus, my recent coffee chat at Chuck’s Coffee with Jan Harju from Good Daughters was truly inspiring!

Good Daughters is a group of moving experts specializing in transitioning seniors into their new homes. Their slogan is: “It’s your move – We Make it Happen!” Reassuring to say the least! 

Moving and downsizing, as we all know, can be overwhelming and downright stressful. Fear not! Downsizing is something Good Daughters does best! Not only does Jan and her team help you decide what to do your four fondue sets, three popcorn poppers and endless paper stacks – she knows how to transport household goods overseas or just down the street into your new home.

Jan and her husband, Arnie are Oregonians that have had long careers in logistics, transportation, and human resources.  They now blend these skills and assist families, large and small, to tackle the arduous tasks involved with downsizing. Jan is reassuring and non judgmental – the perfect neutral party to step into the family dynamics.  By developing a personalized moving plan and time-line, Jan makes your move HAPPEN!

Some of her favorite resources and supporters:

The best secret I discovered is that Jan takes whatever does not sell to charitable organizations – her favorite is Willamette Valley Humane Society, there are two stores in Salem and 100% of the proceeds go to an animal shelter.

Jan, you really do know how to take care of it all in a compassionate and efficient way!

Give Jan a call at 503-522-6637 or email info@gooddaughters3.com

She inspired me to go back and start recycling and donating the items I really do not need! Very good rainy day projects.





Posted on February 8, 2011 at 4:06 pm
Candace Kramer | Posted in downsizing, interviews, Lifestyle, Organize Me, Resources | Tagged , , , , , , , , , ,

Coffee chat with Organizers Northwest

I had the pleasure of chatting with Missy Gerber at Chucks coffee shop. It was very informative (no wonder) with her 10 years of experience. I wanted to share some her valuable tips with you!

With a keen sense of organization and a passion to make a difference in people lives, Missy founded Organizers Northwest. Her and her seasoned team tackle clutter and combat mess, creating peace and improving the lifestyles of their clients.

Missy prides herself on establishing authentic connections with her clients, be they homeowners or business owners, providing dedicated service and expertise. She also conducts popular seminars at Storables, where she breaks down her technique into 5 easy steps. I gotta check one of these out!

Here philosophy brings the relative concepts of the here and now to the forefront.  Be mindful of the present and ask yourself  the 5 whys to discover the true answer to the question, “Do I really need this?”

In this day and age, we don’t really need to hoard magazines, cookbooks, movies and music – all of this is available online. My mom had a huge collection of cookbooks and I inherited this too! After my conversation with Missy, I went straight home and purged my stash of cooking mags!

Missy helps many with that annoying office clutter – you know the stacks and stacks of paper that seem to accumulate effortlessly on our desks, tables and counter-tops?  Clutter is really just postponing decisions and Missy is excellent at making you examine the emotional attachments we have to  our STUFF.

Here are some before and after pictures of her work:

Quite a difference right!?

Best of all, many of her resources, including recycling are local to Lake Oswego. Here are just a few:

  • Do you have a collection of vintage cell phones, and an old microwave lurking in your garage? Far West Fibers recycles electronics and more!

Downsizing and re-organizing your life can feel overwhelming and exhausting. Often, Missy’s clients call her feeling panicked, stuck and suffocated by their clutter but when she is done, they have renewed energy and more time to spend time with family and friends! They enjoy a new lifestyle – CLUTTER-FREE! Or in Missy’s words:

Less mess, less stress, better life. Period.


Missy you are a true expert in space & time! Be sure to contact Missy at 503-245-3564 or missy@organizersnw.com

Where could you de-clutter in your home?

I’m off to go get rid of some more of MY stuff!


Before & After images via Organizers Nortwest



Posted on January 28, 2011 at 9:56 am
Candace Kramer | Posted in downsizing, interviews, Lifestyle, Organize Me, Resources | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,