Holiday hours for 2015

For the 2015 holiday season, we will operate under normal business hours with the following exceptions:

Thursday December 24 9:30 to 1:00

Friday December 25 CLOSED

Saturday December 26 CLOSED

Thursday December 31 9:30 to 1:00

Friday January 1 CLOSED

Normal business hours resume on Saturday, January 2. During the holiday season, some of our staff will be taking a well-deserved vacation, including many of our installers, to coincide with seasonal shutdowns with many of our suppliers and product sources. We’ll be back up at full speed in early January, and indeed, we’re already taking orders for January installation!

From all of us at Space Solutions, have a great season and a very happy new year.


Complete Toronto Master Bedroom Project

Antique White master bedroomHere we would like to share this complete master bedroom project. This midtown Toronto home, where space as you can imagine is at a premium, needed a complete solution for living and storage space. And while often a Murphy Bed is the right solution, in this case our client desired a traditional bed, and had just enough space to make that work. By tailoring the design and application to meet their needs we were able to deliver a solution for them which could very well serve as inspiration for your complete master bedroom.

The first thing of note is that we actually built a platform for the bed itself, including integrated storage below, in the form of functional drawer space. Each side of the bed offers two deep drawers for storage including space for spare bedding. As you see in the detail images below (click to open them enlarged in a new window) the drawers may be opened without getting in the way of the bedding itself. By installing these drawers without handles – the fronts are oversized so you may easily pull them open from below – we avoid creating a hazard for tripping or snags.

Antique White master bedroom drawersAntique White master bedroom drawers
 

Antique White master bedroom ras coverOn the window side of the master bedroom, there was a radiator along the wall. To deal with that we installed a radiator cover cabinet (sometimes simply called a ‘rad cover’). We used the same antique white laminate for the structure and door frames as for the rest of the installation, and the client selected an MDF screen which we had painted to match the laminate. The radiator itself did not run the entire length of the room, but for symmetry we installed the screening panels as if they did, and behind some of the doors there is additional storage, while the remainder allow the heat to radiate, and also open for any maintenance and access. The surface below the window neatly abuts the cabinets on the right end – where we provided some wardrobe and drawer storage.

Antique white master bedroom rad coverAntique White master bedroom drawers

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Antique white master bedroomThe dark counter top used on either side of the bed – a popular woodgrain melamine tone called chocolate pear – creates unified night table space, and on the far side of the room, adjacent to the mirrored wardrobes, extends into a vanity area complete with its own mirrored backing. We also installed LED lights on three separate switches (which are stored inside the drawers on the relevant sides) to create display lighting for the upper glass cabinets, as well as reading lighting for either side of the bed. The LEDs blend nicely with the overhead lighting installed in the room itself. You can see detailed closeups below of the oil-rubbed bronze hardware used for the wardrobe doors (handles to match the knobs used on drawers) along with a pullout wardrobe rail used in this installation. The complete master bedroom project was designed, built and installed by Space Solution using antique white and chocolate pear finishes, with integrated mouldings, crown and other trimming details. To get started on your complete master bedroom, contact us today for a free in-home consultation.

oil-rubbed bronze hardwarewardrobe railAntique white master bedroom wardrobe

All photos by Aaron Mason.


Space Solutions reviews and testimonials

Reviews and testimonials are more important than ever, and at Space Solutions, we work extra hard behind the scenes to make sure your experience with us exceeds your expectations. We are quite proud of the reviews and testimonials we receive from our customers, as referrals and first hand recommendations are so important. Whether you are a first-time customer or someone for whom we have worked before, you deserve to have your project completed on time and accurate. And we want our customers to come back to us for their next project, whether it’s in the same home or down the line, and if you haven’t worked with us before, you need to know that you can trust Space Solutions to be the right fit for you.

Barb Larocque owner Space Solutions

Done the right way on time is my goal for every order. I work behind the scenes to make it happen.” – Barb Larocque, Owner, Space Solutions.ca

HomeStars, “the leading online community of homeowners and home improvement companies throughout Canada”, is a great resource for consumers. The companies listed on HomeStars cover the entire home improvement spectrum, from plumbers, roofers and electricians, to landscapers, designers and yes, closet storage professionals like us. HomeStars recently announced that in addition to continuing to host real, authentic reviews from consumers and providing an Average Review Score for quick reference, they have added a Recommendation Meter, which combines reviews with other factors, helping consumers make an even more informed buying decision. Space Solutions is pleased to note that as of October 2015, we have an Average Review Score of 9.5 out of 10, and the needle on our Recommendation Meter is firmly in the green.

Want to see exactly what people are saying about Space Solutions on HomeStars? You can read all our reviews and testimonials on our listing here. For more information about HomeStars and how they work, read their About page here. Have we done work for you recently, and you’d like to share your experience? Click the Write a Review box on our listing and follow the instructions.

Space Solutions Reviews and Testimonials

You can also read reviews and testimonials of our work on Houzz, which is a wonderful image-focused portal for design and home improvement companies. You can find reviews on our Houzz profile here, and again, if you would like to submit a review, click on Review Me.

Space Solutions on Houzz


Murphy Beds in the Globe and Mail

Toronto Murphy Bed double side tilt custom cabinet deskwall bed

Recently the Globe and Mail published an article about Murphy Beds and spoke to Andrew about what we can do for you. We make Murphy Beds for single, double and queen size mattresses, with both vertical and horizontal orientations. The Murphy Bed installation shown here we’ve written about before, and is a side-tilt double. The Globe article also offers some great tips on selecting a mattress (we don’t supply mattresses, so the mattress you provide is entirely up to you!) whether you’re purchasing for a Murphy Bed or a conventional bed. With a Murphy Bed, you don’t require a boxspring, as the mattress rests on the backside of the cabinet door.

Have look at our Murphy Beds gallery for inspiration on what we can do for you today!


The Murphy Bed in a multi-purpose family room

Wall Bed Rosedale midtownWe’ve posted a couple of times previously about work done at this home, but hadn’t yet showcased the Murphy Bed in the lower level family room. While often times a Murphy Bed will be used in a small bedroom in order to be able to reclaim space during the day, Murphy Beds are most commonly installed in a room that serves a variety of purposes, like a home office, a den, or in this case, the family room. The lower level of this home looks out on the back yard and its patio and pool, and features a long wall of floor-to-ceiling windows. The client wanted something dynamic for this space, something that would catch the available light and stand out, yet not distract from the wall-mounted television he was providing, and chose a laminate called Stainless. This finish is available in the various laminate forms we use in our cabinet construction, and resembles brushed stainless steel when viewed up close. We used melamine for the flat surfaces, and a thermofoil version for the raised panel doors. The use of the shaker profile with Stainless was a bold choice, and really brought this Murphy Bed to life.

Wall Bed Rosedale midtownThe room in which we installed this wall unit and Murphy Bed has a lot of features for its daily use that aren’t seen in these shots; a bar, a pool table and of course a couple of comfortable loungers for watching the big game on television – you might even call it a bit of a “man cave”.  And while that’s certainly the main use of the space, there are times when you may have guests coming for extended stays, and that’s where including a Murphy Bed is ideal. Our Murphy Beds use genuine Murphy hardware, with its patented spring-loaded mechanism, which ensures safe, smooth and easy operation and carries a lifetime warranty against failures. The best part is that a genuine Murphy Bed uses actual, standard mattresses (you provide your own) so you or your guests will be as comfortable as though they were sleeping in a regular bed. We use different combinations of springs during the installation to perfectly balance the hardware for the weight of your mattress – it’s so easy to open and close that anyone can use your Murphy Bed confidently and safely.

Other features of this multi-purpose Murphy Bed installation include a wardrobe on the lefthand side, L-shaped shelves that wrap the corner, overhead doors that lift up for bedding storage, 1 1/2″ trims and lips on the open shelves to create a more robust look, a buildup around the vent pipe on the righthand side (which was duplicated to the left of the television for symmetry) and a false door on the lower right containing a vent grill for the air circulation. All in all, this is one of the more unique Murphy Beds we have installed in the past couple of years. There are some additional angles of the finished product below, and if you would like to get started on your Murphy Bed project, you can request an in-home consultation by filling out this handy form.

Wall bed Rosedale midtown Wall bed Rosedale midtown Wall bed Rosedale midtown
Photos of this project by our friends at Metroviews.ca.


Closet planning – know your terms and needs

walk-in closet dressing room

The Dream Closet – not every home has the space for a Dream Closet, and that’s okay.

When planning a custom closet solution, it’s helpful to think about how you use your closet space. At some point in the process, you are going to be speaking to closet storage experts such as us, so you’ll want to have a grasp on not only your closet needs, but some of the closet concepts that are likely to be at play. This knowledge, in conjunction with information about your needs and preferences will better arm closet professionals like us find the best closet solution for you and your space.

Closet types

First of all, there are different types of closet spaces. Most people are familiar of course with Walk In closets – a closet that is large enough that you can walk into it. Some walk in closets may be a small as 5 feet by 6 feet, or they may be as large an entire room – and indeed, sometimes people will convert a spare room into a walk in dressing room, if you have the space to spare. More common are closets that are too shallow to walk into, which we call reach in closets – since you reach into them. We also commonly work in spaces that aren’t already closets – we can build enclosed cabinets to serve as wardrobes, or even close off the end of a room with our custom sliding doors to create closet where none exists. For more about closet types, please see this post.

Clothes hanging

short hanging closet rods

An example of double short hanging.

The greatest need and biggest part of any closet solution is clothes hanging. Your hanging needs are typically divided by short hanging and long hanging. Short hanging is usually the majority, comprising shirts, blouses, skirts, folded pants and some jackets. Grouping all of your shorter items together can allow you to more effectively manage the required space by stacking sections, known as double hanging. Typically, a single layer of short hanging requires between 36” and 40” in height, you generally you will need 7 feet (84”) in height to achieve effective double hanging. Some items may need less height – some skirts, folded pants and children’s clothes – so you may in some cases be able to utilize lower areas for double hanging. Since we most often will provide adjustability for your closet rods in our solutions, you can often re-space your rods after the installation if the need arises.

long clothes single hanging

An example of single long clothes hanging.

Most people don’t need as much space for longer things, but there are usually a few items that are longer. This may include dresses, longer jackets or coats, robes and pants hung straight by the cuff. For this you will need long hanging – the height required for long hanging will vary, but usually we will allow anywhere from 55” to 70” in height. As such, long hanging is most often not stacked with short hanging, although you can usually combine your long items with shelf space, either above or below the closet rod. Again, you can usually adjust your hanging heights after your installation, thanks to our adjustable rod holders, which easily fit into pre-drilled holes we provide in our panels.

Shelf space

simple shelf tower

A simple shelf tower.

The next most important aspect of your custom closet solution is how do you use shelf space? Open shelves will accommodate a wide range of things: folded clothes that don’t get hung, linens and bedding, smaller clothing items, accessories and mementoes in containers, handbags, hats and shoes. Some things, like folded clothes, you may want in easy reach. Others, like seasonal and special occasion items, may be stored higher or out the way. While it is probably a given that you will have upper shelf space throughout your closet up top, above your clothes hanging areas, you may want to consider a shelf tower in your closet – a bank of shelves in their own contained vertical area. Store items you need most frequently in easy reach. A shelf tower, especially if storing commonly-needed items, will most often be placed in the most accessible part of a closet. If it’s a reach-in closet, likely in the center, and in a walk in closet, either closest to the doorway, or maybe at the end wall if you have clothes hanging down the two sides. Among other things, if you are setting up both double hanging and single long hanging on the same wall, you’ll need to have a division between these two areas at some point, and a shelf tower can serve that purpose functionally.

Shoes are something that everyone needs a place for, yet everyone has different needs and preferences for them, too. You may have 5 pairs of shoes, or you may have 50 pairs – either way, you’ll need a place for them that is efficient, and, if you have a larger collection, allows you to find what you’re looking for. Shoes are usually best starting at the lower levels within a closet – if you have enough, you may even need to devote an entire shelf tower just for shoes alone! For smaller collections, though, consider storing them below your long clothes hanging, or on the lowest levels of a tower. It’s not uncommon for people to want to show off their shoe collections by displaying them on angled shelves as a means of presenting them, or even to house their shoes in clear storage boxes on upper shelves.

Drawer space

custom walk-in closet

A simple shelf and drawer tower.

While not every closet requires drawers, if you can effectively manage the real estate in your closet solution by carefully planning your hanging and shelving needs, you can also free up space in the bedroom by eliminating the need for as much furniture. The types of smaller things that go into drawers are most often those that don’t easily exist on open shelves: socks, undergarments, workout wear, t-shirts and more. For smaller things, like socks, it may make sense to utilize more – yet smaller – drawers, in the interest of keeping it easy to locate things. Too many small things in a larger drawer, the more you need to rummage to find things. Larger items that may still get stored include sweaters and bulkier things, for which it makes sense to use fewer yet larger drawers. A proper closet solution is not just about finding room for everything, but making everything easier to find.

Accessories

There are many other things beyond simple garments that get stored in closets. Handbags, scarves, neckties, belts and jewellery all need homes. We can offer drawer inserts for organizing jewellery; racks for hanging ties, belts and scarves; hooks for grab-and-go things and even shelf dividers for sorting handbags. Think about what other things you may want to store in your closet – an ironing board? A laundry hamper? This is all important information for you to have at your fingertips when planning your custom closet with one of our designers.

Now you-re better armed to discuss your closet needs with one of our designers – contact us to set up your free in-home consultation today!


12 Ways to Work Your Wardrobe

Here’s a great article on Houzz with some very useful closet organizing tips! Of course, we can provide elegant, functional and reasonable custom closet solutions for you, but these pointers are useful both for maintaining your solution, or even if you’re not in the market for one.

You can visit our Houzz profile here, where we showcase many of our more interesting projects and offerings!


High-Gloss Laminate Trends

work station Loft High-gloss laminates are in higher demand than ever before, and Space Solutions offers a full range of incredible colors from a variety of sources. Where once upon a time, if you wanted a glossy finish on your cabinets you needed to invest in lacquer finishes – which we still offer as well – you can now choose from a dynamic pallette of solid colors, woodgrains and other patterns with a durable, high-gloss finish for less cost. The home office to the left is from a recent project in a loft space near Liberty Village in Toronto. We used a high-gloss finish called Antracita for the cabinet exteriors – doors, drawer fronts, fillers and end panels. The dark gray hue of the high-gloss board is highly reflective, and brings light to a space in a way that a traditional matte dark finish never could. The cabinet interiors were done using a matte version of the same color. As a contrast, here we used a textured woodgrain melamine called Castellina for the open shelves and back panel above the work surface, and for that surface itself we used a laminate in a stainless steel finish. You can see more of this project on our Houzz page, where we show other angles, and also some additional cabinets in a high-gloss white in the entertaining area. This loft offered an interesting challenge with its rustic restored flooring and exposed brick, and the high-gloss finish proved to be an amazing complement.

High Gloss White Built-In Wardrobe TorontoNo question, white remains the most popular choice in high-gloss laminates, as it is readily available in all formats that we work with – melamine, thermoplastic, HPLs, and more. A high-gloss thermoplastic option is important if you wish to have a formed, shaker-style door, for example, or if you prefer to have the laminate wrap the edge on a flat slab door, instead of the seam you get using melamine and separate edgebanding. But considering that the preference for high-gloss tends to coincide most often with a preference for a flat, linear style, the color options are broadening all the time. Here’s a wardrobe we did for another customer in their condo. We used a high-gloss white thermo laminate, which wraps the edges of the material without seams. Again, as if often the case, we used regular white melamine for the cabinet interiors – basically, you want all the aspects that you see on a regular basis to match, and be that higher-end finish, but there’s no point in using the high-gloss material on the interior where it won’t be seen. Combined with our old favorite, the “towel bar” handle, it makes for a classic combination.

Here are some other examples of different ways to use high-gloss materials on your next project!

high gloss door

This cabinet was constructed largely using a melamine finish called Aria. But this dual-purpose cabinet needed an innovative way to conceal a television, so we added a sliding panel using a high-gloss melamine called Euroline 2.






sliding closet doors

This project featured high-gloss drawer fronts inside the closet, and high-gloss white panels using our sliding door hardware for a truly unique result.






two tone Murphy Bed

Here’s a twist on working with high-gloss. In this case, we used a green apple high-gloss for the back panels on this wood grain Murphy Bed. In combination with the LED lights we added across the top, the contrast of the glossy backers with the matte melamine really stands out.

Come to our showroom, where we can show you our full range of high-gloss options, and see how we work. And then set up an in-home consultation to meet with our of our designers, who will take measurements and go through concepts with you, and come up with a plan for your next project. Ready to book now? Fill out this handy form and one of us will be in touch to get started!


The Spare Room Murphy Bed

wall bed, toronto

When folded away, a Murphy bed frees up precious floor space.

Murphy Beds, also known as wall beds, are an idea that’s been around for over 100 years, but we build Murphy Beds that are modern and exciting. It’s become quite common for us to be installing Murphy Beds in small condos, possibly in a spare bedroom or a den, or in basements in a home where every inch counts. But a Murphy Bed is an ideal solution for any space that may not need to always function as a bedroom, or when you want to maintain as much available space as possible. Here’s an example of a Murphy Bed we installed in a new home built in central Toronto. This was a fairly spacious three-bedroom house, and this room was the smallest of the 3 bedrooms, set up for a teenager. Rather than use a standard bed in the middle of the floor, they opted for a double side-tilt Murphy Bed, surrounded by a desk and book storage. The desk, next to the window, features a pair of pencil drawers below the surface, and open shelving above, and we added open cubbies above the Murphy Bed and a short book tower on the right side. We employed a lot of little size variances in this structure to keep it all very interesting, and to keep the Murphy Bed from dominating this small room. The top-most surfaces above the desk, cubbies, Murphy Bed and bookshelf all sit a little proud – that is, they protrude just slightly beyond the structures below, creating a shadow line effect. The bookshelf is also set back slightly in depth, as a 16″ deep tower – the standard depth for a Murphy Bed cabinet – is deeper than necessary for books, and reducing the depth also makes the cabinet more interesting, and allows it to visually recede in the space.

wall bed, toronto

A double side tilt Murphy bed is a compact solution for a small room.

For this space we installed a side-tilt Murphy Bed. Side-tilts are often done in spaces that either have a height restriction, or perhaps the location of the bed is dictated by a feature of the room, and you might not be able to have it open the traditional way without conflicting with something. In this case, however, we both had ample height, and the room was long enough that we could have had the Murphy Bed oriented in the standard way, but we went with a side-tilt anyway. We decided that a vertical orientation was going to “loom” in this small room, and besides, the ability to offer storage above the Murphy Bed, and continue the “stepping down” effect of the structure was desirable, too. Behind the bed, you can see the angled headboard which, even though the mattress is on its side, still provides a stable feature that helps strengthen the structure across that wide span, and helps close the gap so one doesn’t lose things behind the bed. The entire structure was built using standard 3/4″ melamine board in a finish called Sheer Linen, a laminate with a beige hue that features a pattern resembling the cross-hatching of a woven fabric. In an industry that is dominated by woodgrain patterns, a finish like this really stands out and brings a nice touch to any project. (Note that in the weblink above, the color online presents more gray than it really is. Always view an actual sample when making your purchasing decision!)

A double Murphy Bed, whether oriented vertically or horizontally, still offers ample room for a single person or even a couple, and as with all Murphy Beds, you’re using a real mattress – maximum thickness of 10″. That maximum of 10″ allows the crossbar that links the feet to rotate up and over the mattress when you close the cabinet. We use only genuine Murphy Bed hardware for all of our Murphy Bed installations. The spring-loaded mechanism is warrantied by the manufacturer, and all of our installations carry are guaranteed for the lifetime of you owning them.We have two Murphy Beds on display in our showroom for you to try out and get started on your next project today!

Photos of this project by our friends at Metroviews.ca.

Toronto Murphy Bed double side tilt custom cabinetToronto Murphy Bed double side tilt open custom cabinet


Storage solutions for a modern Toronto condo

Today we’d like to do a walk-through of a project we did in a modern Toronto condo, with solutions in a variety of areas. You’ll see different looks and styles for different rooms, that in the end all work together to create space that is elegant and practical, and perhaps you’ll find some inspiration for your own home.

custom bedroom storage

The main showpiece in this condo was this bedroom piece. You know of course that Space Solutions makes Murphy Beds, but we also will create solutions that go around an existing bed. In this case, the clients had a wonderful bed already, and the task was to create a storage solution that went around it and worked with it, what is sometimes known as a bed surround. Our designer, Christopher, came up with a concept that looks great, and provides both a useful storage solution as well as a live and work space. To the left of the bed, we built a tall, narrow cabinet for enclosed storage, and the base of it protrudes and acts as a night table, so there’s a convenient space for a book, an alarm clock, a cell phone, etc. On the right-hand side, a desk was created for a work space, open at the bottom for legroom, and with convenient cubby hole storage directly above it. Across the top, and bridging the two sides, we built a creative series of open and enclosed storage, for display and easy-to-get-to areas, as well as concealed storage for things you may not want left out in the open, such as extra bedding behind the wide upper door.

Keeping things bright and light, we built the bulk of the structure using white melamine – also used for the closet peeking through the door to the right – and added exterior trims and facing with a high-gloss white finish, a popular, modern touch. The framed glass doors may look like aluminum, but they’re actually board, framed using a thermo laminate called Stainless. The doors then had the same white lami glass we used for our sliding doors inserted for a great look. For hardware we used the ever-popular “towel bar” style of handle in stainless steel, and we added a pair of LED puck lights above the sleeping area to provide more light for reading in bed.

Click on the thumbnails below for more views of this bedroom installation.

Night table bedroom LED lightsglass insert doorsglass door inserts

Cayenne maple wall unit condo Toronto bedroomIn addition to the work in the bedroom, we also installed a built-in in the den. This storage solution is a wall unit for general storage, and required some drawer storage as part of things, for smaller loose items that don’t stay as well on shelves. In order to preserve the clean, vertical lines of the doors, we placed the drawer behind them. The drawer boxes themselves are the same size as they otherwise would be, but without the addition of a face or extra handles. So on the outside, you see a series of doors with consistent handles, but inside, it varies. This cabinet was built using melamine in Cayenne Maple, with flat doors; you might have thought that a crown moulding doesn’t go with flat fronts, but as you can see here, it works quite nicely and finishes off the cabinet. Click on the thumbnails below to see interior views of the drawers.

hidden drawershidden

china cabinetLastly, we also installed a simple built-in in the client’s dining room. This cabinet features a combination of solid doors for concealed storage as well as doors with clear glass inserts for display. Again, we added LED lighting to the cabinet for illuminating their display items, and further used glass for the shelves so that the light can pass through. This cabinet was built using a combination of melamine and thermo laminates in Chocolate Pear, with shaker-style solid doors. All three areas of the home feature different colors, different hardware and even different lines, but everything works in this condo. This was a new location for the client, but this approach also works nicely for you if you’re living in a house, and/or have lived there for many years.

Blending traditional design details with fresh, modern lines is always exciting and effective, and we can help you with that. It’s what we’ve been doing since 1986! To get started on your next home project, you can visit our showroom in The Sunnybrook Plaza, or use this handy form to request an in-home consultation – we’ll take the measurements and bring samples and portfolio to go through ideas with you, and in just a few weeks you can be enjoying your own custom storage solution.


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