Wednesday, January 9, 2019

A new project with a surprise ~

I have been planning to completely re-do the office for a while. It was my husband's favorite room and he spent many hours here, which adds to my enjoyment of using it now. With all of the windows and a view of the garden it is quite a nice room to work and spend time in but it has become very dated and quite shabby and the huge over-sized desk and chair commanding much of the room was far more than I need.


Increasing the space and function of the room was one of our first remodeling projects years ago when we first bought the house. We knocked out the exterior wall, the driveway beyond limited how far we were able to go, but by making it all in windows it gave an feeling of spaciousness and certainly a more pleasant view. 

Below you see the room with the desk and chair on the day the shelter I donated it to came to pick them up. I was so happy to give them a home where they would be appreciated, but it was a little sad to think of all of the times I would go in and see my husband sitting here, working, listening to the music he so loved, and talking to various people on the phone.

In the past few years when I have been trying to decide what changes I wanted to make in this room it always included painting the natural wood ceilings white, removing the old carpeting and installing a  brick veneer floor laid over what I remember as a combination cement, and wooden sub floor where we had added the addition to the room. My goal was to make it into a combined office and sun room.

Then...Juan (my wonderful helper) came to remove the old carpeting and prepare the floor for laying the new brick.  He took up a bit of the carpet and surprise, surprise under it was tile! I have absolutely no memory of ever laying tile in this room and we did all of our own tiling. Not only do I not remember tile but neither do my children, or any other family members. But it is here, in a suitable color, and excellent condition - there was no way I could reconcile removing it for brick.  

The big problem, although the tile was in good shape the carpet had been glued down. It took days to clean up the glue during which time I had to keep Miss Twiggley (and myself) away from the toxic odor. It was a horrible mess!

 Beside cleaning up the floor Juan also removed all of the old wallpaper, primed the walls, painted the ceiling and installed recessed lights to replace the old, and in my opinion, ugly track lights. I have painted the walls in Bahr's Cottage White, I still have the woodwork and bookcases to paint.

I love picking out fabric and adding details to a room. After hours spent on line and ordering several samples, I found  Laura Ashley's Hydrangea fabric for the drapes, I was lucky enough to get the last 9 yards of what is now a discontinued pattern. After three tries I found an area rug to match the sage green and pinks in the fabric.

So...a new project for a new year. Lots still to do including picking out window coverings and ordering a new desk, but the worst is over and the rest is the fun part.

Thank you for visiting!


Saturday, December 22, 2018

One last little tree ~

The other morning I was standing at my kitchen sink looking out the window to the deck outside. It came to me how much time I spent here and thought how much a little Christmas tree would add to my viewing pleasure.

All of my decorations have been up for weeks...but...I did have one little tree left languishing in the barn. A little Charlie Brown tree that would be perfect!

I brought it up to the house and rummaged around until I found a few things suitable to be outside: some red glass ornaments and a wicker garland, plus one little bird and a red watering can.


 A little sparsely decorated but still charming and has made cleaning up the dishes so much more pleasurable.

~  Merry Christmas ~ 

Monday, December 17, 2018

Fun and fairies ~

I have had a lot of enjoyment decorating with traditional things this year. To begin, I decided to bring my vintage ornaments out of storage for the tree in the living room, complete with tinsel. I can't remember when I last put tinsel on a tree, I had forgotten how pretty it is.

Then to add a bit of whimsy I tucked in some Mark Roberts Christmas fairies.

I don't have many of these, although they could easily become a bit of an obsession - they are so cute and it is fun to put them into unexpected places as tiny surprises. ( I have been gifting myself one each year for my birthday).

Here on the mantle among the decorations...

taking center stage on a table arrangement...

and presiding among the gifts under the tree.

I think they add a bit of charm and certainly a lot of fun.

~ Wishing you a Merry Christmas ~

So little time and still so much to do!


Thursday, December 6, 2018

Holiday mantle ~

I always try to coordinate my mantle in the living room with the tree. This year I did a Victorian themed tree using all of my vintage glass ornaments, with burgundy glass balls and ribbon. For the first time in many years I have tinsel on the tree, but decided to forego it on the mantle.

I tried to reflect this in the mantle decorations with burgundy colored silk flowers, gold beads and ribbon. I used eucalyptus and pepper branches to soften the effect. 

It is a rather dramatic change from last year when I used soft pastels throughout the room. 

Miss Twiggley seems to approve. So far she has completely ignored all of the decorations. I consider myself lucky as many people are unable to decorate with a feline friend in the house.

It's nice to have the house all decorated and so much fun in the evening when I go around and turn on all of the little lights. Houses are never as lovely to me as at the holiday season. It is well worth the effort to add these festive touches.

~ Merry Christmas ~

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Holiday decorating ~

First I needed to spend some time mulling over what to do this year...

Then face the daunting task of going down into the basement and bringing up all of the storage bins.

This is a California basement, not really very big, but a great storage place for out of season holiday decorations. The trouble is they have to be hauled up!

Finally, opening everything up and organizing how I will begin.

I like to mix it up and do some new things every year but there are some old standbys such a Santa theme in the kitchen that I will repeat, for me the holiday wouldn't be as enjoyable with out some of these old friends. 

 I have decided to use burgundy as my inspiration color in the formal rooms and have taken out of long term storage all of the antique glass ornaments for the living room tree. I want a traditional old fashion Victorian Christmas tree with lots of tinsel. 

Now I just need to put on some Christmas music and get busy.

Wednesday, November 21, 2018