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Making It Livable Again

Computer consultant Stuart Rinzler needs help making his place functional again.

Stuart Rinzler is a computer consultant who has been using his apartment as a warehouse for his work. Computer hardware and tools are scattered on the floor and in closets, software is stacked up and covered up. Research papers, bills, mail and magazines cover every surface (horizontal or otherwise).

This apartment looks more like a warehouse with stacks of computer hardware lying around, little furniture and endless piles of paper.

The only furniture he has are two broken-down armchairs in '70s colors, TV sets, and a dining room table barely visible under the piles of papers and tools. His apartment is overdue for an organizational makeover.

The dining room table is the landing area (and black hole) for any paper coming into the apartment.

The dining room table is the landing area (and black hole) for any paper coming into the apartment.

Mela Catanzaro, a professional organizer, introduces urban style and orderliness to this drab apartment. She leads Rinzler through the painful task of sorting through all the clutter.

Her plan for the apartment is to break the space into three distinct areas separated by color and curtains: a dining area, a living room and office space. Each space can be closed off when desired.

New furniture and accessories are added to the living and dining areas, while a dual desk system, filing cabinets, wall shelving and task lighting make the office space functional and attractive. A closet is filled with storage containers sized appropriately for computer parts.

A new dining table and mirror set a sophisticated tone as soon as one enters the apartment. The niche near the front door has various containers for collecting mail and personal items like a cellphone, wallet or eyeglasses.

The living room is transformed into an attractive entertaining area suitable for an urban professional with new furniture and accessories. It is separated from the dining room and office by colorful curtains that help define the spaces.

Wall-mounted bookshelves in the office area contain the software, research papers and paperwork that once covered tables, chairs and the floor of the apartment.

The new office area now has two desks — this one with a filing system for paperwork and another that is raised for working on computer hardware.

The apartment that was once a warehouse is now a home, thanks to Catanzaro.

Sherwin-Williams paint colors used:

Frostwork-eggshell SW0059
Hubbard Squash-eggshell SW0044
Downing Straw-eggshell SW2813
Extra White-flat SW7006
Dover White-satin SW6385

Products from Stacks and Stacks:

Scooter office lamp
bulletin board
Sonoma hutch
monitor stand
mesh desk chair
two-drawer mesh file cart
CD case steel

Products from Brookstone:

wall/desk light
three nesting tables
revolving bookcase
storage cube

Products from The Container Store:

Pandan storage stool
storage chest
chest dividers
five case totes
stacking drawers
CD organizer
hanging file folders
file folders
magazine file
Jute canvas boxes
tray table
Makati oval wastebasket
Makati CD basket
seamless tins
desk leg
Zen notice board
mesh magazine file
shantung photo box
desk pad
pencil cupholder
drawer organizer
letter tray

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