Monday, 24 December 2012

New Sitting Room

Bill worked hard, starting way back in September, working throughout October and into the weeks leading up to Thanksgiving.  If you want a 'before' photo, showing the minty green colour scheme, here are some photos from Thanksgiving four years ago.

He stripped off the wood chip wallpaper in the living room.  

See the round white-filled hole near the bottom?  Bill
reckons there was a servant's bell there at some point.  It's
beside the fireplace, the traditional location for such things.

I'm acquainted with this very stubbornly adhesive stuff, a bumpy-textured wallpaper, having stripped it with him in our first joint decorating endeavor. Being foreign, I didn't have the in-built aversion to the stuff, so I chose to put it back up and we lived with it another 12-15 years.  This time we replaced it with a different texture.

The first trial of boring beige, but it did sort of make the top
part look taupe.  Bill was happy to re-paint the walls, but
we left the ceiling as 'done'.

Neither of us can remember how we came up with the new colour scheme we were aiming to achieve.  I think he mentioned red and I mentioned taupe.  Somehow it ended up more of a beige, wine and grey, but I can live with it.

I made the strange decision to paint the 'ceiling' right over the
cornice and down to the picture rail.  I figure 10' ceilings can
stand to be 'lowered' with colour.

I knew taupe would be a nearly impossible colour, but I had no idea how much of a headache burgundy could be.  There are brick reds, brown reds, magenta reds, lipstick-y dusky pink reds...  

I need it to be very simple:  a square to hold next to the drapes,
the couch and the other colours...  Bill, bless him, humoured me.

We even looked at printed wall papers, but this was well over my head.  I have yet to see a wall paper I'm certain I could live with for years. 

Yes, that is Ella's teddy bear on top of the bureau.

Apparently, many people here in Britain re-decorate their homes every three to five years, some even annually.  Not us.  We re-decorate when the cracks start annoying us and not a minute before.  That said, Bill says he actually likes to do the wallpapering and painting.  I'm happy to let him.  However, he doesn't like to make decisions about paint colours, etc.  Sadly, this is not my strong point either.

I bought pillow forms and sewed burgundy and taupe covers for them.

For some reason, Bill laid down a 'law' that we would not have a colour mixed for us.  Why, I don't know, I didn't ask, I just accepted it.  In hindsight, I would now figure out what colour scheme I wanted, go to the paint store and have my paint mixed for me. 

I let myself shop at the Land of Green Ginger in Tynemouth and came home with
this Edwardian mirror for only £65.  There were a dozen more I could easily
have brought home!

We discovered that some DIY places don't carry booklets or sample sheets, they just have squares up on the wall (dirty, dingy squares that don't look like they match the square on the paint tin).  Others sell paint in the perfect shade, but only glossy, not matt.  Most sell sample pots, the cost of which adds up...  

The dark red seems to make even a grey room warm...but the fire helps as well!

I have about 20 red and 15 'taupe' paint pots that I need to figure out what to do with.  They don't even dry the same colour as they look in the bottle!  I'm considering a go at some 'modern art'.  

The tree barely fits, but it's up and that's what counts.

We finished in time for Thanksgiving, at which we hosted about 24 family members and neighbours...and now we are ready for Christmas.  

As you can see, we aren't minimalists...

There is more to "show and tell", but it will have to wait a few days...


Carolyn said...

The new colour scheme is gorgeous!

Lacey R said...

Wonderful job on the renos! You paired the colours well.

Anonymous said...

I think it looks beautiful! I can't imagine re-doing decor every 3-5 years. I am very much a love it and leave it kind of gal.

Anonymous said...

Looks so beautiful! Like you I have difficulty picking colors. But you came up with a lovely scheme that plays up that 1920's architecture with pizzazz.

Sandra said...

I love the color scheme Shelley...I am very partial to taupe and/or pewter color with red. I actually have a goldish neutral color as a foundation here in the little cottage house...which my landlord just repainted for us. Aw the joys of no longer being the proprietor! I am loving seeing the pics of your house.