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Move over man cave: Women savor clean, organized room to call their own

Interior designer Michelle Mio says more of her female clients are staking out a room or nook in their home just for them.
BY KRISTA JAHNKE Published: March 3, 2012
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Make way for the woman cave.

Birmingham, Mich.-based interior designer Michelle Mio said that more of her female clients are staking out a room or nook in their home just for them.

No husbands, kids or sticky fingers allowed.

Whether they are used for sewing, scrapbooking or just paying bills, the rooms women want are typically private, pretty and functional, Mio said.

“With the workload women carry at home, they need a space that is organized and one that they can call their own,” she said. “It seems imperative with our clients to be able to find things in a moment's notice. A space that can accommodate anything from a kid's daily schedule to bill paying is growing in trend.”

More than 80 years ago, writer Virginia Woolf penned the essay, “A Room of One's Own,” about how women, especially those who want to practice a form of creativity, need a place to do it. In 2012, given the explosion of the handmade and creative arts movements, many women are finding that as true as ever.

Here, a couple of women share the spaces they have taken over in their homes to fulfill their creative pursuits.

For scrapbooking

Alison Oleshansky, 38, of Birmingham hired Mio and her design team from Rariden Schumacher Mio Interior Design to decorate her entire home. The space that presented a big question mark? Two adjoining closets in the basement.

Oleshansky didn't need them. And so her scrapbooking room was born.

The room features a few statement-makers. The floor is a glittery light pink. The back wall is dressed in a bright pink, large-scale damask print that's velvety to the touch. A light metallic wallpaper covers the other walls.

Four crystal chandeliers gleam from the ceiling and cast a pretty but bright light on the space; it's good for the creative work Oleshansky wants to do.

A waist-high, custom-made rolling table fills the middle of the room. Surrounded by four white leather bar stools with pink trim, it's the nerve center where the creative work happens. The table top — white and shimmery — is made of recycled materials, including bits of mirror.

“Everything sparkles,” said Dayna Rasschaert, an interior designer who worked on the room.

The custom white cabinets and drawers — 26 of them — provide room to organize everything.

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