After searching around Michael's for a long time, I time, I found some inexpensive glass paint that you bake on, and it has worked wonderfully for me. I made my mother some painted wine glasses for Mother's Day this year and she loves them. (I also painted my drinking tumblers... but that's another story!)
I'm also at a loss for my family. I have two brothers and my parents, and I'm stumped for all of them.
You could get bright colored globes (like that would go on the top of a bed post) and put them on the ends of your head and foot board (like where a post would be) or faux drawer pulls for your dresser to make dorm furniture less boring. If not globes or spheres, maybe you could use some shaped like pop-art type items (brightly colored cans like Warhol, small old style alarm clocks, etc.).
Fish would be cool, but could be too child-like unless you made them more bass-shaped than tropical fish shaped.
Also, very simple shapes, like circles or squares could be interesting without being girly.
As for the towel rack, I keep at least 2 towels on my rack, one that is new and perfectly clean, and another that I've used once or twice. maybe it would be funny to put "dirty" and "less dirty" or something like that on each side of the towel rack. (That is, if he's one of those guys that never does laundry and uses the same towel forever, like most guys I know...)
But a saying, that is a toughie, I can't think of anything funny (for a bathroom) that isn't too vulgar.
Stencils from a store would probably look too... stencily. I would recommend making stencils of each letter script-style, so you could make them look the way you wanted but not have to worry about messing up freehand. OR, you could cut the words out of vinyl and paste them up like decals. I guess it just depends on how you want the overall effect to look.
Wow, thanks, you guys all have some really creative ideas!
I have decided that because the downstairs is black and red, I want the upstairs to be different but not to clash. (Like my old coral/orange did with the red, ick!) I decided on pink, green and brown, with some cherry blossoms for the loft decor.
As for the cats, my roomie really liked the idea of beaded wires, but we haven't done it yet. The packing tape is a great temporary solution, and I also like the idea of the plastic with the little spikes (Especially for my upstairs loft gap). We'll just have to start testing things to see what works!
Thanks, and let me know if you have anymore ideas!
I tried a baby gate on my stairs once as a speed bump (they run up and down the stairs together like it's their own personal race track) and it didn't even slow them down. Unfortunately, I think the gap is too short (in height) for a baby gate too.
I never understood how bubble wrap could be a cat deterrent; my cats LOVE that stuff, it would definitely attract them! Same with fragrant things; they investigate it, then if they find it is not edible they just knock it over and move on.
My roomie really loved the idea of the beads on some clear wire, so we may try that. She gets some of the setting sun that comes through that window, so we both think it would look really nice if it reflected through some large prismy-cut beads.
I made some mini string art on my walls last night, and it looked amazing, so I may try that to fill some of the larger spaces. I'm checking out that Habitat store today too, I'm so excited! Woohoo!