Small Spaces: The Ultimate Shopping Resource

Hi all! Hope you are doing well! Been a hectic week for me, as usual but I did manage to stumble upon this gem of an article via and I had to share it with you. Go check out this fabulous shopping resource list for all the items you might need to furnish your tiny space.

Go here for the full list! Happy Shopping and have a wonderful weekend!



Image via here.

Posted on April 25, 2012 at 9:44 pm
Candace Kramer | Category: downsizing, interior design, Resources, Small Space Design | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Windermere Community Service Week

Just wanted to pop in and do a quick post about what’s been going on at Windermere this week – It’s Community Service week where the whole team over here does our bit to help out!


This year, I’m heading up the program and I’m so happy to be helping out a wonderful local organization – Community Warehouse. This volunteer based organization helps low-income family turn their houses into homes by providing home goods such as dishes, glasses, pots and pans, sheet, blankets, towels etc. Here’s a list of exactly what is needed and what they do not accept.

Locals have been going through their households, cleaning out what they don’t need and dropping off goods at the Lake Oswego Windermere office. It’s been fantastic seeing the residents really pitch in and donate some great items! We only have one more day – so go thru your stuff and see what you can part with. It’s a win win. You get a more organized house and the great feeling of helping those in need!




Posted on June 16, 2011 at 12:03 pm
Candace Kramer | Category: Community, Events, Local News | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Bring your Antiques!

Just because you are downsizing doesn’t mean you have to get rid of your favorite antique pieces! With a little creative thinking and good space planning those beloved hutches, chests, secretaries and bookcases can come along with you. They often provide ample storage, which is key in a downsized home and they almost certainly hold memories and special meaning – so bring them along! Let’s peek into the home one of my own “downsizers” and see how she incorporates her much loved, large scale pieces into her 1,800 sq. ft. abode.

Oozing with European style and opulence, this client plays with scale and challenges her space by not being shy about large pieces. Balancing light and dark prevents the room from feeling heavy. High ceilings and ample natural light makes the space appear larger.

An antique silver tray adds sparkle to this tufted leather ottoman…

By creating stylish vignettes, she tells a story and creates layers of personal interest with her collections.

This majestic hutch is right at home in this open floor plan.

And who would have guessed that this painted bookshelf would fit perfectly into this hallway! A great place to grab a good book and smile at family photos on the way to bed.

An eclectic sitting room is full of antique finds. The different styles blend effortlessly, resulting in a room full of character and warmth.

So, don’t get rid of all your favorite pieces, thinking you must go buy a complete set of small-scale furniture for your new downsized home. Mix it up, keep what you love, get rid of what doesn’t work, play with scale and create balance within your new rightsized lifestyle.

Need help? I’m here for you!






Posted on May 13, 2011 at 2:45 pm
Candace Kramer | Category: downsizing, furniture, interior design, Real Estate, Small Space Design | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , ,

Closet Office

I have begun to meet up with several of my 555 residents to document some of their downsizing solutions. It has been so much fun re-connecting with them, touring their homes and having them share their downsizing stories with me.

One of my favorite solutions that I have seen is the closet office! In a smaller living quarters, sometimes the office space is the first to go but with a little creativity, one can put that workspace back into the plan! One of my “downsizers” did just that!

By lining the space with shelving and inserting a desk top she has given her husband a workstation that didn’t originally fit into their home. The best part – when it gets messy she can just close the door!

Here are some other fabulous closet offices…


What do you think? Do you have a closet just waiting to be cleared out and transformed?

Posted on May 4, 2011 at 11:31 am
Candace Kramer | Category: downsizing, interior design, Small Space Design, stories | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Bath Design: Wall mounted Vanities

In many downsized homes, bathrooms inevitably get smaller too…so how can you make them appear more spacious? The answer : get that vanity up off the floor. Wall mounted sinks and storage not only make the bathroom easier to clean they visually trick the eye by revealing more floor space – instantly the room feels more open! The vanities at our 555 townhouses are all like this and people always wonder why…it’s smart design!

For more inspiration, check out this fabulous round-up of “floating” vanities…

Zenbath contemporary bathroom
Cary Bernstein Architect Choy 1 Residence modern bathroom
MODERN modern bathroom
XStyles Bath Design Studio contemporary bathroom
bathroom modern bathroom
Pretty cool right? Would you consider one for your downsized bathroom? If so, you might want to take a peek at Ronbow – they carry  a wonderful line of these space-saving vanities.
Have  a wonderful Monday!

Posted on April 25, 2011 at 1:03 pm
Candace Kramer | Category: bathroom design, downsizing, interior design, Real Estate, Small Space Design | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Home Tour : London Style

Hi all,

My name is Ivette and I’m guest posting on Candace’s blog today.

She sent me out on assignment yesterday! Where? On a huge, red, London-esque double-decker bus, of course! Yup, at 10 am me and a gaggle of Windemere real estate agents boarded the cherry red bus for a royal real estate tour. Like most places, Lake Oswego is aflutter with talk of the upcoming Royal Wedding, so why not view homes via a Brit approved bus! We sipped mimosas and watched the gorgeous scenery of West Linn, Oregon City and Lake Oswego whizz by.

Our first stop was Candace’s listing…a lovely home in West Linn…click here for the listing info and more pics.

From house to house we traveled, up winding hills and over bridges, laughing at the crazy hair pin turns and gasping as our big red bus careened down hills and narrow passes. The sun finally made an appearance and brightened the experience. Each home offered something different – a beautiful view, a glamorous bathroom, a slice of history. It was a lovely way to spend a few hours and I felt lucky to get the chance to go!

Here’s a little slide show of the tour…


Here is a list of the homes we toured with corresponding links…

1. 1494 Skye Parkway, West Linn MLS# 11184239

2. 4145 Horton Rd. West Linn MLS# 11333578

3. 2510 Oregon City Blvd. West Linn MLS# 10075196

4. 812 John Adams St., Oregon City MLS# 11591359

5. 3520 Riverknoll Way, West Linn MLS# 11482902

6. 1956 Cheryl Ct. Lake Oswego MLS# 11437047

7. 2070 Ridge Point Dr. Lake Oswego MLS# 11665122

8. 1196 Fairway Rd. Lake Oswego MLS# 11086534

Go take a peek at these gorgeous homes! Thank you Candace, for sending me on this adventure.

I had a blast!


p.s. Looks like the bus was spotted around town (it’s kinda hard to miss) and was featured on KATU…see here!


Posted on April 13, 2011 at 4:49 pm
Candace Kramer | Category: Community, Real Estate, stories | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Lake Oswego Streetcar Support

While most couples go out for cocktails and dinner on their anniversary, my husband and I headed to the Lakewood Center of the Arts to attend the open forum regarding the Lake Oswego Streetcar Project. We waited three hours so I could testify my support.  It was well worth it and over eighty people stood up and shared their approval of this very important improvement to our city.

If you have not yet publicly supported the Streetcar and you missed the forum – don’t worry you still can contribute! But you need to hurry, the open comments are set to close on Jan. 31st.  Click the link below and show that, you too, are behind this progressive endeavor to move our community forward!

and for more info go to Next Stop Lake Oswego.

As for the rest of our anniversary evening…well, we ended up having a wonderful dinner at Tucci‘s, who in my opinion, still have the best steak in town! The wine didn’t hurt either!

Have a great weekend,

Image via Next Stop Lake Oswego

Posted on January 29, 2011 at 2:20 pm
Candace Kramer | Category: Community, environmental design, Lifestyle, Transportation | 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

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 | Category: downsizing, interviews, Lifestyle, Organize Me, Resources | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,

Mass transit in my neighborhood

By now, I’m sure you have realized that I am really into mass transit. I try to incorporate it into my life locally and whenever I travel. It not only decreases our carbon footprint it unites communities.

As a real estate agent, I am actively involved with my clients and their changing needs. When people want to move, transportation is a major topic. While marketing beautiful condo units like 555 Second Street and the Stafford Commons – it is obvious that mass transit is extremely important to these buyers. One of their first questions would be, “Candace, where can I get on a bus?” or “Where is the future street car going to be?”

Many of my buyers who are downsizing want to completely change their lifestyle. They want to be able to walk to the market or the park. They want to rely on mass transit and leave their cars in the garage. They want to ride their bikes more! They desire healthy, active and accessible community living. I love it! It’s the way it should be. The most beautiful cities in the world are built upon these ideals. Portland being one of them!

The Lake Oswego Streetcar is a hot button topic right now in my neighborhood. I’m sure you can guess how I feel about it but, like any major change that involves a lot of money, it is inevitably controversial.

For more info check out this recent article by Steve Duin from the Oregonian. Go here to the Lake Oswego Project page for more information, how to get involved and an overview of the three options that are being considered. Want the nitty-gritty details? Check out the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS). Get comfy…it’s long!!! A glass of wine may be needed!

In the meantime…here are some shots from my European Mass Transit experiences….

This is in Prague! Trolley, streetcar and cabs all on the cobblestone streets! Love it!

Little ole' me waiting for a train in Halsatt, Austria! Europeans really get mass transit!

What are your thoughts on mass transit? Is their enough of it where you live?

Have a fantastic Friday!

Posted on January 6, 2011 at 3:38 pm
Candace Kramer | Category: Community, downsizing, environmental design, Lifestyle, Transportation | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Downsizing – What does it really mean?

Lately, everyone is going through a shift, not only with jobs but with their living space and this inevitably effects our lifestyle. This is the problem everyone is scared to talk about – no one knows how to do it.

I am not just talking about senior housing…or retirement.

Downsizing is affecting renters, vacation home owners, empty-nesters & multi-generational families. As an interior designer, contractor and real estate broker, I come across some pretty interesting stories of people experiencing this transition.

My desire, is to gather everyone in a room and have a virtual chat – blogging allows me to do this! So, get comfy, grab a cup of tea or wine and let’s discuss how you are dealing with these changes.

Have you downsized? What does it look like and what are the challenges? What are the pleasant surprises?

Let’s give each other support, creative advice and inspiration!

I, too, am going through this process of downsizing – out of the big house and onto a new adventure!

Let’s talk about the elements involved: implementing change, space planning and lifestyle adjustments.


We know businesses are downsizing already and so are we! Changing your living situation to a new paradigm – it may be less square footage or living with others, it may be multiple smaller homes, or a boat! It may be renting instead of owning a home. I am going to explore all the possibilities and share stories of real people who have gone through changing their lifestyles.

Have you made a change yet and why?


Well…being a designer for the last 20 years – SPACE is what I deal with daily.

Space is everything. It affects your pocketbook, mood and it enables you to interact socially with others. A home has both private and public spaces, so it must employ smart design for it to be beautiful and functional. I will be sharing LOTS of ideas on how to use space efficiently!

What great ideas have you used in making your space personal & functional?


How does lifestyle affect our space? The setting may be urban – are you going  to walk more, use mass transit, enjoy parks, work at home, travel and most importantly – live energy-efficient?

What kind of lifestyle do you want and how does your living space effect that?

Thank you brave friends!

I look forward to introducing you to my smart & savvy supportive friends and clients that have encouraged me to blog and follow my trend instincts. They have been though this process one way or another- their stories will be shared-

Ivette Newport, designer & blogger, Nick & Wendy Thacher from Chicago Title, Lake Oswego Chamber (I attended their fantastic Forge marketing seminar “Digital Strategies for a New Decade”), Jack & AJ Kemp Hawksview Cellars for believing in my ideas and letting me run with them! Oh, and I must thank Mrs. French for featuring my little beach home on her amazing blog – Bliss.

Lastly, to all my clients that inspire me with their positive attitude towards their new lifestyle change – they are the brave trailblazers!


Images via: 1. rjwelho 2. HomeHouseDesign 3. SP8254 – on sabbatical

Posted on May 24, 2010 at 9:12 am
Candace Kramer | Category: downsizing | Tagged , , , , , , , , ,