Wednesday, April 25, 2012

My plans to make our cookie cutter house a HOME!

The other day I was surveying my surroundings when I realized, with some shock, how dull my decor has become. I have always been a fan of color, so the absolute dearth of it in my home perplexed me. I have always painted my walls, preferably in dark, bold shades. When Nathaniel and I were house sitting for my parents I painted our bedroom a dark shade of red and our on suite bathroom mango with hand painted red swirls climbing up the walls. (It was LOUD) Our living room was a vibrant shade of blue. When we bought our first home in 2006 I painted my craft room a lovely periwinkle blue, our bedroom a dark shade of wine, our kitchen green and our living room a dark burgundy. Fast forward a couple of years and here I am drownding in shades of cream, black, wood and white. I still love color, but perhaps the craziness of raising children has created a situation where I long to keep the controllable, my decor, my walls, my environment, simple, calm and clutter free. Thankfully I feel ready for color again, although I doubt I will ever paint a room red as I've realized that it is far too limiting. The nice thing about cream, black and white is that they are flexible. That being said, I am ready for a change. When we settle into our new home I fully intend to inject "our personality" into our home. I realize that it is going to take time, patience and money but I am looking forward to the process. I love textiles and I have so many that I am going to turn into throw pillows. My dear friend Holly, who will do a guest post ones of these days, is heading to Europe in a couple of weeks, and has graciously offered to pick up something lovely for me at the Turkish Bazaar in Instanbul. Swoon! I think I am going to see if she can find me any susani, or ikat textiles. I am on a bit of a fabric rampage right now. br />

I finally have an mls listing number to share with you if you want to check out the photos. I was thankful that this listing included some photos of the two bedroom suite downstairs since I had forgotten to take any photos in it. It is # 332101 for those of you that are familiar with, or you can simply click on this link. Shortly after we bought our home I started doodling on the mls listing sheet we were given when we first surveyed the home. Please forgive my horrendous drawings. I am hopeless and drawing anything realistic. I'm trying to decide where our furniture will go, what we need to toss and what we need to buy.

Girls Room:

Since the girls room will have bright pops of fuchsia pink and yellow I going to paint the walls a subdued shade of grey and paint all the furniture white. That way, I keep the "bones" of the room basic, and I can change the accents colors when I tire of them.

1.  Paint the bunk beds white and hopefully paint a second hand dresser a bright shade of yellow.

2. Make some bold punchy curtains. I think I am going to buy some simple white cotton curtains and stencil a design of them with fabric paint in colors of my choice. A creative woman who blogs here, used this method to spice up some standard chairs from Ikea and I can't wait to give it a whirl.

3. Create a fun gallery wall that includes my girls artwork, shadow boxes of childhood treasures, and photos among other things. I have already painted most of the frames white, now I just need to decide on an arrangement and hang them properly. Nathaniel calls me the "tack queen". I turn walls into pegboard... its terrible. This is what Amelia's gallery wall looked like a couple of months ago. I have a whole of bunch of Claire's things to add to it.

4. I still love my expedit from Ikea as it keeps all the girl's toys organized and still looks cute. I have decided, in the name of clutter control and my own sanity, that unless toys fit on this shelf, they are donated. When I set up my craft room downstairs the girls will have an entire section of art supplies as well, but they will be monitored and only used when I am close by to supervise. As the girls get older I imagine we will amass some board games, but those will probably be kept up high in a closet so important pieces are not misplaced. How do you manage your children's belongings without loosing your mind?

Back yard:

Once we take possession of our home, we will begin work on our back deck. I hope that by the time we are finished  it  will something like this.....

I want to be able to hang some twinkly lights, a few Moroccan style lamps and create a pleasant outdoor living space. I have already started brainstorming ways to turn my existing living room couch set into an outdoor furniture set. I have some black waterproof paint, foam and now I just need to find the right outdoor fabric to reupholster it will. I'm picturing box woods in cast iron urns, a chimeas or fire pit so that our girls can still roast marshmallows. I am looking forward to picking up one of these stylish, yet functional outdoor rugs from jysk.

I would love to plant some wisteria near our pergola. My dad has an incredible one growing in his back yard and it would be great to start ours with a clipping from his.

Living Room:

I have never lived in an "open concept" home before. I am much more familiar with small, compartmentalized rooms, but I am looking forward to being able to keep an eye on my girls. My hubby has already claimed the wall above the stairs as the backdrop for his cherished caribou antlers. At present they are mounted on a piece of rustic wood but I have convinced him to try something a little more fashion forward. I have plans to spruce up the fireplace area with some bricks and a wood mantel, and at some point buy some new child friendly couches. I had my heart set on a beautiful set from lazy boy furniture, but when I stopped by their showroom and checked out their prices, I realized that I would need to start looking elsewhere. I think I will use our large black expedit in this room to keep all our books, electronics, albums, and other items contained. Nathaniel and I are still at a loss as to where we are going to put his big aquarium.

Dining Room:

I have loved this "kattrup rug" from Ikea for a really long time and I would love to use it under our dining room table. I love the colors and the design. At some point I would love to purchase a new table and chairs, but that will have to wait. I think I will tuck my china cabinet into the recessed portion along the wall.


While I typically prefer country style kitchens with built ins, bead board, and white or butcher block counter tops, this kitchen is still a MASSIVE upgrade from the one that I have been using for the past three years. While I am not a huge fan of the modern, clean lines, I am sure that it will grow on me. I think I will always be a country girl at heart. What I am excited about is all the drawers, the pantry, and my new appliances. I am going to have a dishwasher for the first time in my married life. WHI HOOOOOO! Not only that, I am going to a shiny new stove and french door fridge. Ohh fancy! I think we will use our old one as a "beverage" fridge for Nathaniel's shop.

I have my heart set on some banana leaf chairs from jysk for my kitchen island, although I am a little nervous about how they will stand up to my children. I can just picture them covered with peanut butter and jam. We will see.....

Master Bedroom:

I have not decided on a color for our master bedroom, but I am still collecting fabric swatches and ideas. I am on the hunt for a fabulous king sized duvet cover. Once I find it, it will most likely be the jumping off point for the remainder of the room. I am still deciding whether or not I will upholster a headboard or have Nathaniel make me one out of wood. So many fabulous decision to make!

As I mentioned in a previous post, we were given an AMAZING king sized mattress and I can't wait to dress it up with new linens, pillows and a handsome bed skirt. At the moment I am leaning towards mirrored dressers, silvery greys, a hint of blue or yellow, and something stunning above our bed. I loved the sunburst mirror in the above picture  the moment I laid eyes on it, but it was WAY out of my price range. I'm sure I will find something equally glamorous at Home sense for a fraction of the cost.

I am going to have a walk in closet for the first time in my life and I am so excited. I don't have much in the way of clothes, but I am looking forward to having all my accessories (shoes, handbags, necklaces, scarves and hats) all in one place. I am researching creative ways to store and display everything.

Guest room:

Most of the furniture, linens and artwork from our current master bedroom will be used to furnish our bitty guestroom. I am looking forward to having a designated room for guests instead of putting them on a mattress in my craft room floor. I can't wait for all our friends to come and visit us!

Craft room:

I imagine that my craft room will look similar to the way that it does now, especially since the room I will be using is similar in size. The only difference is that I will most likely paint the cabinets my parents gave us when they renovated their kitchen and top my workspace island with some kind of butcher block or laminate counter top. I would also like to give my vintage table another coat of turquoise paint, top it with glass, and put it on wheels so that I can move it around the room.

1 comment:

Chris is a geek said...

Wow! I love hearing about all of your ideas for decorating your home. You are very creative!