Bring De Stijl to Your Own House!

Did you know that your pool would turn into a pond if you don’t filter and treat it? I didn’t, but I discovered this after we bought the current house. There was a gap between the previous owner’s pool company and ours. The pool did, indeed, become a boggy brown pond. This and the falling down pool equipment shelter made for a fine afternoon in the sun. After we re-plastered, re-tiled, installed a new heater and filter, and connected the gas line I was still left with a dangerous looking equipment shelter. Many people freely gave me ideas for the shelter. Many of these ideas required vast amounts of money and multiple permits. Fortunately, I am a great fan of vintage Sunset Books. These are a treasure trove of good ideas.

I was tempted to build the wall myself. But I tend to injure myself almost every weekend with house projects. So I wisely left the construction to people who know how to do this. The wall is incredibly simple. I took the idea of the “neighbor-side” of the fence and reversed it. The support is exposed and creates the grid. The marine-grade plywood is attached on the backside. I selected a few colors, and was left with a Piet Mondrian, or Partridge Family equipment shelter. If the wall could talk, I’m sure it would say, “A whole lotta lovin' is what I'll be bringing. Come on get happy.”

Lazy, Crazy, Hazy

Laziness is a common theme with most of the successful people I know. I’ve talked with some of the best-known designers, who have endless energy and are always tackling something. They all think they are lazy. Of course, that can’t be true, these are people who are propelling the profession forward with new ideas, volunteerism, and new technologies. I, on the other hand, am actually lazy. Knowing this, I keep myself busy. I’m always on alert for any lazy thinking. If I feel like waiting to do something, I don’t. I take on that task right then. If I feel like sitting on the sofa and watching television on a Sunday afternoon, I get up and work in the garden.

When I run out of things to do, I can turn to our collection of Sunset Books. There are endless ideas to keep me busy. One of my favorite objects is a driftwood hanging my grandmother made. She collected the driftwood on a trip up the Pacific coast and used an idea in one of the Sunset Books to create the hanging. This is a good example of fighting the lazy temptation of sitting on a beach.