Monday, February 23, 2009

let the changes begin

We started the changes in the dining room this past weekend, and I am very excited about it! Rob had a short work week this past week, so on Thursday, we were able to go to the Pottery Barn Outlet up in Lancaster.  You may or may not know that Pottery Barn owns West Elm, so, the outlet usually has a good amount of West Elm furniture and accessories.  As you can imagine, the outlet is VERY hit or miss.  If you are looking for something as specific as theParson's Console, chances are, they probably won't have it when you go.  The outlet is close enough that we don't mind making the trip, but not close enough to go on a regular basis to check and see if they have what we want.  So, as I said a little prayer the night before, we headed off to the outlet with high hopes they would have what we were seeking.  

When we first got there, they had arranged everything very differently from when we were there last.  I saw about 10 of the Parson's desk (not the console), but in a weird bronze color. But, it made me hopeful.   In that section, I didn't see any consoles, but I was still determined. As we rounded the corner to where there was a large section of West Elm furniture (more than I have ever seen at the outlet) -there it was.  Like a beacon of light.  ONE Parson's white console table.  I think I may have screamed as I ran over to it.  As I got closer, it looked like there was minimal damage, a few knicks on 2 of the corners, but nothing that couldn't be touched up with a litle white paint.   And the price was 50% of what the catalog price is.  So, we felt like it was meant for us, and didn't let the little bit of damage deter us.  

We loaded into our rented Jeep Liberty (we still don't have our trusty Versa back yet from hitting the deer), and off we went.  We also scored this little white media box for $15 that looks pretty good sitting on top of the console. 

On Saturday, we got to work painting the dining room and were able to get it finished thanks to Aiden taking ridiculously long naps that day.  I feel like we are already using the dining room more, with the changes.  I am currently sitting at the console/desk blogging- we just turn around a chair from the table and "voila", it's a work space.  The pale yellow also makes the space feel A LOT bigger.  

The wallpaper hasn't arrived yet, and there are some other small changes we will be making once we get the wallpaper up (mostly fabric related).  So, I just have a picture of the console area for now.  You can get an idea of what the paint looks like, although, it is not the best picture. 

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

getting the itch

I am getting an itch to start the changes in the dining room.  It may be all the new blogs I have been reading, or it could be that I am just yearning for a project.  I have decided on a pale yellow for the walls.  I ordered the wallpaper last night because it could take up to a month to arrive.  (it comes from Germany, however, it is still cheaper than most wallpaper I have found).  I am really excited about the wallpaper.  Wallpaper is something that I have been wanting to use for awhile, but I am glad I waited to find one that I really love.  The plan is not to wallpaper a whole entire wall, but to frame out a piece above the buffet.  I think it will really showcase the buffet which I am really excited about.  It is such a beautiful piece of furniture.  We acually found it on Craigslist when we first moved in and just replaced the handle pulls on the drawers.  It is in excellent condition.  

This photo was the inispiration for the wallpaper idea.  If you look closely, the wallpaper is framed on the wall.  Rob assures me this will not be that difficult to do.  We will first need to measure out the space and then make sure that we mark it so that it will be easy for my mom to hang the wallpaper in that space.   My mom is a professional wallpaper hanger.  No joke- when I was little she had a small business on the side.   Then we (Rob) will get some type of molding of something from the hardware store, paint it, and then attach it to the wall to make a frame.  The whole idea is that I want it to look more like art, not just a wall covered in wallpaper.

And we should have plenty of wallpaper left over to possibly use in our walk through closet, which is a project we will hopefully tackle this spring.

I think Rob and I may paint the dining room this weekend.  I am really eager to brighten things up.  Even though it will be awhile until we can do the wallpaper, the yellow will be a cheery change for these cold winter days.  

Friday, February 13, 2009

right on

In some of these new blogs that I have been obsessively wasting time on, they have links to these online quizes you can take that determine your decorating style.  At first I was skeptical, feeling like I don't want to put a label on my decorating style.  But, today I gave in and decided to take one.  I am glad I did.  I mean the label they use is so chic- I love it.-"vintage modern".  And it is so right on, it freaky.  See the description below...

Your personal style is a mix of 2 specific styles:

Vintage Modern

Flea Market, anyone? You know you are drawn to modern furniture and interiors, and yet you don't like a space that feels cold and sterile. And who could blame you? That's why Vintage Modern is so appealing to you. Though the backdrop of the room, the walls and windows, are many times white or monochromatic, the furniture and accessories have the color, shape and texture to bring the warmth into the space.

The great thing about Vintage Modern is ease of mixing different styles in the one space. You can have a new modular sofa mixed with a great pair of chairs that your grandmother purchased in the late 1950's. The new and old work appear as though they were destined for each other. Even if you don't have time for swap meets and garage sales, so many of the mid-century pieces were so great that they have been remade and mimicked year after year.

I mean, I couldn't have explained it better myself.  I love mid-century modern furniture.  However, I really want the feeling of my home to be cozy and warm.  I HATE that "cold, sterile" feeling that a lot of modern homes give off.  I mean, how is a baby supposed to romp around on cold, slate floors?  I prefer my warm shag carpet please.  And, I DO like the feeling of old with new- mixing vintage-y type things with modern furniture- LOVE IT!
I was extremely skeptical while taking the quiz because probably 75% of the rooms I either labeled "hate it" or "don't like".  I think there may have only been one room that I "loved".  I still don't understand how it was able to pinpoint me so well!!  Anyway, I am glad I gave in and took this quiz.  Now, I want people to ask me to put a label on my decorating style, "oh, vintage modern" I will say.  

And, if you are interested, go here and take the quiz  

ps. I would just like to say I took this quiz again because I was reading on the Young House blog how when they took it again they got different rooms and different results.  This time I got 100% vintage modern!  So, there is no doubt about it- this is my decorating style!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


I recently found out that Domino, my favorite magazine of all time, is done- stinkin' economy. This magazine has given me more inspiration than anything else when it comes to design and interior decorating.  Even though I could not afford 90 percent of the things in the magazine, I eagerly awaited this magazine to come in my mailbox every month.  And luckily, I have saved every issue.  (Rob tells me he will put an old issue in the mailbox every month- so sweet :-))

Goodbye Domino- you will be missed!

*on a happier note-check out the blogs to the right that I recently have found and am now addicted to!

Sunday, February 8, 2009

the dining room

I really like our dining room.  There are a couple key things in this room that I am really attached to.  The thing I am probably most attached to is our dining room table.  

We got this table when we moved into our 1st apartment and it was painted pale yellow and sage green with beautiful stenciling.  I loved it at the time, but over the past couple of years, my decorating style has changed to a little more modern.  However, I really love the lines of this table, and it has a very classic feel.  By painting it white, we made it look a little more modern.  We also painted the chairs that came with it and I recovered the seat cushions numerous times.
 These chairs were not in the greatest shape and in need of some serious repairing.  So, one day, I just decided to sell 4 of them on Craigslist and use the money to get these new chairs from ikea.  
I kept 2 of the chairs for 2 corners in the dining room and to use when we have company.  Although, these 2 are falling apart as well, and I will probably replace them some day.  I really like the new chairs because they make the room feel not so formal, and I also don't like everything so matchy matchy.  They give more texture to the space as well. 

The other thing that I have always loved about this room is the color we painted it.  It is one of those colors that can dramatically change depending on the time of day and the light in the room.  And people always comment on it.  However, I have recently been thinking about repainting this room.  (I told you- when I get bored, I change things).  One of the reasons I want to repaint is because I am obsessed with this wallpaper that I found.  

I want to do the wall behind the buffet with a large piece of wallpaper framed out (I'll explain later).   I think this would make the buffet stand out more.  The one thing I don't like about the current color is, it's a little dark.  Since our dining room is in the middle of the house, and there is only one window on the side, it doesn't get much natural light.  I am thinking maybe a pale yellow could brighten it up.  I would keep all the furniture the same and would probably change only the frame wall.  

I had gotten this idea from a magazine which showed it as a cheap way to fill a wall. Other than that, everything else would stay the same.  I also think that painting and doing the wallpaper framing, would make it feel even more informal, which we like, because we want to use it on an every day basis without making an effort to.  This is something that Rob and I talk about a lot- using all of our spaces in our home.  

Something I really want for this room which would go where the frame wall currently is, is a console-that would double as a desk.  We don't have a desk and it is becoming necessary to have a permanent place where I can pay bills, write thank-you notes, blog, etc.  Especially since Aiden is so very interested in the computer and sitting on the sofa with the lap top is no longer an option.  Below is the console that I want.  I am hoping to find it at the Pottery Barn outlet since they sell West Elm.  It has two drawers in the front which would be a great place to keep the checkbook, current bills, etc.  

Ok, well there's my thoughts on the dining room.  Let me know what you think about the wallpaper and the paint color.  I figure, if I don't like it, I can always change it!  Also, check out this great wallpaper website-it is awesome.