Why must it take so darn long for a fixer-upper to get fixed up?! And yet, in the same breath, aren’t the best spaces the ones that feel collected, the ones that are filled with memories?
Our fancy, blue living room is slowly turning into one of those spaces. Here is the room as of this morning:
And here is the room in Spring 2010. What you can’t see is the broken window and the huge (murder?) stain on the carpet. We also found a copy of Talladega Nights in the fireplace.
Those first few years contained sheets for curtains, drafty windows, mismatched furniture and brave friends.
The carpet alone should have sent me running to the hills, but instead, I focused on The Blue Drawing Room at Buckingham Palace. Such splendor! The Blue Drawing Room is the kind of room made for crossing legs at the ankles whilst cradling a delicate cup of hot tea. From the minute I stepped into that palace long ago, I just knew I had to have my own fancy blue room.
And one thousand years later…..ta-daaa!
One of the first changes I made to our living room was the wall color: a lovely pale blue to cover up the hospital green. The next change, of course, was the carpet!
Then I spotted this French provincial tufted sofa at a consignment shop for just $150 and practically dove headfirst onto the cushions in case anyone else tried to claim it. We should probably name our sofa since she is THE conversation piece of the room. (Doris, perhaps? I like Doris.)
Doris (ok, that’s her name now) has been the perfect sofa for photo shoots, too! My talented musician friend, Lindsay Katt, and I had fun one afternoon shooting silly pics.
It was Lindsay who inspired me to keep the ornate frames (snagged 5 of them for $20 at a yard sale) empty.
Doris remained pillow-less for a couple years until my artist friend Mary Gregory gifted me with some kitchen towels that I just couldn’t bear to use.
So I turned them into pillow cases:
Mary also gave me some thank-you cards which I also couldn’t bear to use. So I framed them. This Painted Bunting is one of my favorites:
With all this nature buzzing around Doris, the neighboring wall needed a nest.
This woody garland I pulled from a friend’s shed fit the bill perfectly:
My second favorite piece of furniture in our living room is this secretary desk/hutch combo. There’s just something about separate nooks for envelopes, stamps and tape that make a girl swoon! Now, to get better at sending snail mail…..
A couple years ago, a friend gave me a plain white desk from her storage unit. I hummed and hawed over how to make it special until I spotted a Union Jack-painted table a few months ago. As an anglophile, I just had to have my own version. With the helps of friends, I decided on this coral shade, and after finally getting my butt in gear, here is the final result:
Isn’t this painting of pink ranunculus to die for?? Well, Mary Gregory painted that, too. I can’t get enough of her work! If you feel the same, here is her website. Happy shopping!
As for the table, creating your own is as simple as sanding, taping and painting…
This was a great table to distress because it’s been painted at least 5 different colors in its lifetime. Hence the yellow, pink and dark brown layers. I’m so happy with it!
Our living room may be a fancy blue room, but it’s also a place where shoes are allowed on the footstools and coffee is sipped from thick mugs. Potty mouths and David Sedaris are also allowed.
Stained ceramic next to polished silver. It’s how I maintain balance.
Do you have a fancy spot in your home?