Friends + Family + HOUSE: Newburgh + Music + Movies + Books

That extra room at the back of the house.

You know that room at the back of our house? The one I painted white? Yeah, that one. I’d been using it as an office for a while, but after we relocated the iMac to the apartment (and if I’m being honest, I’m usually just working on the sofa with my laptop, anyway), it kind of just turned into dead space—a place to put things. Which is lame, you know? Because then it gets cluttered and forgotten and you never want to go in there.

Happily, though, Evan is going to turn the room into a little music studio for himself! He’s already moved in some of his guitars and pedals and…um, whatever all of that other stuff is (my musical knowledge is limited strictly to listening, and I like it that way), and he’s been working in there quite comfortably.

We’d like to build some sort of rack or stand for guitars, and hang some hooks for cables and straps and stuff, too. We definitely need a rug (I’m trying to convince Daniel to sell me this one), and YES…we need to hang the Random Light already! (Woah, can you believe I’ve had that thing sitting around for five months now?!)

And then we need to clean up the messy piles of stuff sitting all around the room and on the desk.

I’ve been trying to convince Evan to start blogging, by the way. I think he’d be really good at it because he’s smart and cute and funny, and I’d like to see more stylish man-blogs (or as I prefer to call them, “mlogs”) out there. No luck yet (though he is on Twitter), but I’m working on it!

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  • Reply Adam May 24, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    Is that pile of books by the desk on some sort of barely visible shelf or just a really tall pile? Either way I like it!

  • Reply Emily May 24, 2011 at 2:16 pm

    I would love to see more “mlogs” too! Love the wallpaper next to the white walls and floors. I’m such a sucker for high contrast. Love your blog. I’m a fairly new reader.

  • Reply Ladylolly May 24, 2011 at 2:58 pm

    Inspired by your original post about that light I looked on ebay (uk) and found one for £70. Promptly brought it. Then couldn’t fit it in the car, then through the front door… whoops might be a bit big!!! Yep way too big for my little London house. So back on ebay it goes…. If you need the original light fitting for the center of your lamp let me know before it goes on ebay.

    • Reply Anna @ D16 May 24, 2011 at 3:02 pm

      Woah, I do, I do!! The missing fitting is what’s been keeping me from hanging it (I’m sure I could rig something up, but WHEN will I get around to it?). Are you sure you don’t mind separating it from the rest of the sale? If you’re sure, I’d love to buy it off of you!

      You can email me: anna AT


  • Reply Heather May 24, 2011 at 3:10 pm

    Woah my god, I’ve been pining after that yellow rug in Daniel’s apartment for sometime. Between your blog and instagram I’m starting to feel like a stalker. But you’ve been a huge inspiration along the way while I’ve been redecorating my 50’s ranch! Thanks for being awesome!

    • Reply Anna @ D16 May 24, 2011 at 3:37 pm

      Hahaha, I kind of feel like I’m stalking MYSELF on Instagram, if that makes you feel any better! :D

  • Reply Sherry May 24, 2011 at 3:40 pm

    The light is great in that room. Again, I can’t wait to see our house come together five years down the road…

  • Reply thisismycat May 24, 2011 at 3:47 pm

    Yes! Evan blogging! PUH-LEASE! He could write about comics (I’ve seen the shelfs…), music and dogs. I would totally read it.

  • Reply Holyoke Home May 24, 2011 at 4:37 pm

    Ha! ‘Guitars and pedals and….ummmm’ – this is how I talk about Mr. Man’s architecture………stuff! I don’t *even* know what they are – the…….things.

  • Reply JacquiBee May 24, 2011 at 4:45 pm

    I’ve been looking for storage ideas or massed guitars too. Ive seen a couple of things on Ikea hack websites, maybe have a look there for an idea. The room looks good with him working away, I dream of a salon fo rhaving friends round and making music.

  • Reply victoria May 24, 2011 at 5:03 pm

    so cute.

  • Reply Sally May 24, 2011 at 5:13 pm

    Best guy website ever-

    • Reply Anna @ D16 May 24, 2011 at 5:21 pm

      I can guarantee that if Evan had a blog it would be absolutely nothing like that.

  • Reply Lori Andrews May 24, 2011 at 6:11 pm


  • Reply elaine May 24, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    there is NO need to clean up the messy piles of stuff sitting all around the room and on the desk., IT’S PERFECT AS IT IS .

    • Reply Anna @ D16 May 24, 2011 at 8:26 pm

      Haha, well, it’s stuff that should really be put away. I don’t have an aversion to stuff/clutter, but when it’s things that belong somewhere else…

  • Reply AT May 24, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    maybe you can convince Evan to start off small…like have him write a few guest posts here. Once he see’s how receptive poeple are to what he has to say he might be more easily convinced to start his own!

    • Reply Anna @ D16 May 24, 2011 at 11:54 pm

      He did do a guest post a while back! It’s really more about time for him. He’s a busy guy, and he prefers to use his downtime to do stuff like make music. ;)

  • Reply Citify May 24, 2011 at 8:49 pm

    Hey Anna – love your blog. It’s been a great inspiration to my wife and I who are in the second year of renovating our 120 year old Victorian.

    And guess what? I blog…I mean mlog!


  • Reply jess May 24, 2011 at 10:22 pm

    What does Evan do for work? Is it music related? hehe and he should definately start a ‘mlog’!

    • Reply Anna @ D16 May 24, 2011 at 11:56 pm

      Evan is a technology directory (or director of technology—I can’t rememeber which!) at an advertising agency, but he’s always been involved with making music on the side.

  • Reply Mamma Biscuit May 24, 2011 at 11:03 pm

    LOL Anna…..that word “mlog” feels really weird rolling off my tongue!! I actaully think a few guitars on a rack would look pretty good in that room…It’s great that Evan has this budding music studio in the works and like everyone else who has responded to this post, I would love for him to create a mlog! Keep workin’ on him!

  • Reply Squeezed of Shoreditch May 25, 2011 at 3:36 am

    Love the black wall. I’ve been seeing a lot more of them about recently and they look great.

  • Reply gracie May 25, 2011 at 4:54 am

    Oooh good idea, I like the little piles I have to say!

  • Reply La May 25, 2011 at 8:26 am

    Love the light ball. Where did you get it?

    • Reply Anna @ D16 May 25, 2011 at 9:08 am

      La, click on the “I’ve had that thing sitting around” link in the post for the whole story. :)

  • Reply Kathy May 25, 2011 at 9:01 am

    Even without the pendant hung, the room looks great! Great photos, too! :)

  • Reply Nicole Franzen May 25, 2011 at 9:28 am

    oh man, looking at this space. It would be so ideal for my man as well :) he has a space now with all his music equipment and I keep helping him revamp it but this is so spacious and lovely. I am inspired to help his little “man cave” even more :)

  • Reply KateA May 25, 2011 at 11:27 am

    My husband owns a music studio and we have found that the best “cable keepers” are actually bridle hooks, bought at a saddlery shop. With cables, you want something rounded because a plain hook can damage the wires within The bridle hooks have two sections: rounded top and then a regular hook just below that.

    As far as hanging guitars, there are some beautiful wooden systems out there. In our studio, we wrapped metal posts in salvaged wood and put instrument racks on that.

    Some of my husband’s studio can be seen on our website:

    • Reply Steve May 25, 2011 at 7:13 pm

      KateA, you are right, it is best to leave audio cables loose and even sloppy. If they are too perfectly aligned, it can cause extra electromagnetic noise.

  • Reply chairsmith May 25, 2011 at 5:15 pm

    Love the way the Random Light is just sitting there quite randomly on the floor! It has a beautiful sculptural quality about it – look forward to seeing it hanging around by the ceiling.

  • Reply Monica May 25, 2011 at 5:58 pm

    Ha! “Mlog”, I see another “Fauxdenza” phenomenon in the making.

  • Reply Lonely Wife Project May 25, 2011 at 6:21 pm

    Even your dead space is cute as hell. So is your boy!

  • Reply Mary Maru May 25, 2011 at 10:02 pm

    I envy you your extra room in the back of the house. And I have to say, I had to go back and really scrutinize the photos looking for the messy piles you mentioned. Your room looks delightfully eclectic!

  • Reply Lisa May 26, 2011 at 7:36 am

    Love the wallpaper, me thinks me might need that…
    I for one hate any stuff on the floor. It can look all casual and eclectic in all sorts of manner, but all I think about is dust. I have an amazing Electrolux, but my house is still constantly full of dust bunnies, even with my rigid-Swede-no-shoes rule which my visitors mock me about. So any interior with cool paintings casually overlapping and leaning against a wall just instantly make me think of moving those m*f*ers any time I need to clean. Same goes for piles of magazines or books on the floor- Love the look, hate the inevitable gathering of dust.

    And I can’t believe you’ve had that lamp for 5 months. I thought I read about it like 6 weeks ago. It scares me that time goes that quickly.

  • Reply mommy May 26, 2011 at 10:26 am

    Now that the back room has become Evan’s music room (great idea!), what are you going to do with the large storage closet?

  • Reply Laurie Bilyea May 26, 2011 at 11:09 am

    Good morning Anna, spied these rain drop linen tea towels by Zakka Nouveau on Remodelista this morning. Thought of you and wanted to pass them along!

    Regards to you and Evan,

    • Reply Anna @ D16 May 26, 2011 at 12:16 pm

      What a funny coincidence! I just included their bento bag in my picnic post on sfgirlbybay!

  • Reply Brett Alderman May 26, 2011 at 11:15 pm

    Please tell Evan that he owns a pretty sweet array of boutique effects pedals. I’m a ten year veteran of the music retail trade and can tell he knows how to dial in tone. And is that a silverface Fender Deluxe Reverb?

    As for guitar hanging, there isn’t much on the market that is functional and pretty. The Hercules brand wall hangers are the safest (they have tabs that pop up with the weight of the instrument so they don’t fall off). They sell them with a wooden (cedar-ish finish) or metal base but I’m certain they could be modified to fit the decor.

    If any of his instruments have a nitro-cellulose lacquer stay away from anything that is described as “surgical rubber.” It will leave burn marks in the finish. But I’m sure he already knows that.

    If he wants to add acoustic treatments to the room I would recommend using high density insulation boards. It’s basically the same stuff that the big-name companies use, but a lot cheaper. Plus, you can wrap the boards with fabric to fit the space’s aesthetic.

    I love reading your blog. That wallpaper is killer.

  • Reply Evan May 27, 2011 at 2:41 pm

    Brett, thanks for the stomp box compliment. My tastes have definitely been boutique lately, particularly EarthQuaker and Blackout. The amp is a ’70s Princeton, I forget the exact year.

    It’s a bit frustrating that most music manufacturers, regardless of what they’re producing, pay very little attention to design. All the guitar hangers are pretty awful, but I bet there’s something from Ikea I can hack. I’ll check out Hercules, though.

    I’m not planning on any sound insulation right now. I’ve actually been going direct to my laptop from a Vox Lil’ Night Train, you can see it on the right side of the second photo. It’s got an emulated out, which hasn’t been doing a terrible job. I use so much reverb anyway it doesn’t matter that much. The Fender is a very loud 12 watts, but fortunately, that part of the house isn’t attached to our neighbor. I just try to keep the sound down in general, which is why my Marshall is probably sad being in a closet.

    And thanks to everyone for the mlog encouragement. It could happen…

  • Reply Brett Alderman May 27, 2011 at 8:59 pm

    It seems that most companies are concerned more with being pragmatic instead of attractive. I’m certain that they could be both. Perhaps some MDF and a jigsaw might be the ticket.

    I started to get into computer based recording a few years back but as a drummer that’s not very practical. It’s a lot easier for someone else to be at the controls. I’m in the process of selling all my drum equipment to finance an office renovation (including some faux-denzas) and buy some photography gear. I’ve thought about buying an M-audio controller and writing some music with GarageBand.

    You should definitely start blogging. My wife prompted me to start and I’ve been at it for close to three years now (2 on WordPress).

    • Reply Evan May 29, 2011 at 10:34 am

      Definitely give GB a try, it’s really satisfying to get some quick results down. If you’ve got an iPad, you could probably use it control your audio software (at least stop/start so you don’t have to get up from your kit). I don’t have too much experience with M-Audio stuff, but my engineer friend recommended the Apogee ONE and it’s working out well.

      • Reply Brett Alderman June 2, 2011 at 2:46 pm

        I was really inspired by “King of Limbs” (particularly Morning, Mr. Magpie) to start toying around with a keyboard. I really dig the M-Audio Axiom 25 because it has drum triggers built in; feels like home. I’ll have to take a look at the Apogee stuff.

  • Reply Patricio Londaits May 30, 2011 at 9:56 am

    The guitar makes him look even more like Moby

  • Reply erin lang norris May 30, 2011 at 11:45 pm

    i loved this post! and it makes me feel good to know that other people have rooms that are dumping grounds for everything if they are not in use. one of my biggest embarrassments (although we’re getting to the end of the piles!)

    so, i do have one question & have wondered this often…maybe you’ve covered it…when you stay at your apt, is it a planned thing or do you just end up there when you’ve had a long day? do you both stay or is it a solo thing from time to time? i was mainly curious because you have pets, which i’m sure makes it more of a challenge, and also because i’ve been considering something similar in the future & am intrigued by the thought.

  • Reply Chee Wee May 31, 2011 at 4:44 am

    Nice wallpaper! I want a den like that too ;P

  • Reply KateA June 1, 2011 at 10:09 pm

    @ Evan, the new Pro-Tools no longer needs a proprietary interface. My husband is about to change interfaces in his studio.

    There are also some really bad ass audio diffuser plans out there. In a recent Tape Op, there is a schematic for a BBC design that we are going to build out soon. We have many framed diffusers: boxes built from old pallets with insulation inside, MDF outside of that. We covered with canvas drop clothes and put them on casters so that we can use them to isolate amps or vocals, etc.

    • Reply Evan June 3, 2011 at 12:52 pm

      Thanks Kate. Don’t have Pro Tools, but I’ve been messing with Logic. I find the more complicated the software guess, the less likely I am to use it. GarageBand has its limitations, but it’s really fast and easy.

  • Reply Ross Bennett Brown June 3, 2011 at 11:08 am

    What about buying those nifty guitar hangers that are wall-mounted? If Evan has pretty guitars (you know what I mean, good colors, etc) they would look super against the white.

  • Reply Fritz June 4, 2011 at 10:05 pm

    If you think you might like a custom made wrought iron guitar rack …let me know

    I make them on occasion

  • Reply jd June 6, 2011 at 12:29 am

    yes, please. no need to “clean up”. isn’t this real life, how you live. with a little bit of stuff lying around. i think it humanizes the space. looks great… although i liked it as an office too.

    • Reply Anna @ D16 June 6, 2011 at 6:14 am

      It’s still “real life” even if you put your empty cardboard boxes in the recycling bin and throw away broken lamp cords. Kind of confused by all of these comments about the trash in this room somehow being a good thing.

  • Reply Lakshmi June 6, 2011 at 8:32 am

    I love that desk. Simple and functional, but pops. Is it Ikea? Or better yet, where are the legs from? Thanks!

  • Reply Paul July 21, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Hi Anna, just discovered your amazing blog yesterday doing a ‘white floor’ search, and now I’m an obsessed fan! My wife and I just closed on a house in CT on tuesday, and we’re thinking of painting all the floors white. I was wondering how yours is holding up? thanks again for your great blog!!!!

    • Reply Anna @ D16 July 21, 2011 at 3:10 pm

      It still looks perfect, Paul! And thanks :)

  • Reply Amelie September 30, 2011 at 10:38 am

    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE! Where is the chair from? thanks ;)

    • Reply Anna @ D16 September 30, 2011 at 12:14 pm

      Which chair, Amelie? There are 3 in the room :)

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