Archive for June, 2007

19
Jun
07

Goodbye Country Friends

As David said when he told me this last week, “I hope you’re sitting down.”  Country Friends, my favorite store for vintage and affordable sit around stuff is closing.  If you hop up there soon (in the shopping center at Dean Rd. & 86th St. in Indianapolis), you’ll get some bargains, but don’t wait too long. 

I can’t believe this will be the end of Michael.  He has too much creative energy to fold things up for good. 

15
Jun
07

Matchstick Shades Install Coming Soon

Dave, the installer from Lowes called to tell me that they would  install our shades next Thursday. 

Have I mentioned that for a small fee you can have someone from Lowes come out and measure your window and then let you know what kind of treatments it will structurally support?   It costs about $35.00. 
Bedroom Befores

If your project requires an inside mount, like mine did because of our roofline (see skanky before picture above), accuracy and structural information are both really important.   A half-inch off and you just paid for a pile of wood (or bamboo in our case) that won’t be going in your window without some major alteration.  And if your window frames aren’t hefty enough, heavy blinds can pull out. 

I decided to go ahead and have Dave install them, too, and that’s a decision I’m second-guessing.  Two windows ended up costing 100.00 for installation.  The shades were only a little over 100.00 for both sets*.   Still, I’m glad we don’t have to install them, and by “we” I mean John, because I’m really more “eyesy” than “handy.”  And I suspect he probably would tell you that the $100.00 bucks is a bargain.  Besides I intended for this bedroom redo to be as hassle-free as possible.  Professional measurements and installation save a lot of prep and clean-up time. 

    *This might be an argument for using a moderately priced designer rather than the semi-do-it-yourself route with help from Lowes.  Had I gone through my beloved former boss, Susan Ertel, who is a designer here in Indy (1114 Walnut St. Franklin, IN 46131, 317.736.9823), she would:

    A. Measure for free.
    B. Bring catalogs and sample books to my house and provide design advice.
    C. Get a dealer discount. (A designer charges the client a percentage above wholesale, which is typically still below retail if they are reasonable, and she is.)
    D. Handle shipping, delivery and installation, and if I’m not mistaken, for less than what I’m paying.The reason I didn’t use Susan in this case is that I’m on a short timeline, and designers usually juggle many clients, which draws out the time required to get things finished. Probably the only thing I’m saving in this project is time.

07
Jun
07

Sheer Off – 2007

As the bedroom evolves it is taking on a coastal feel—probably due to the gold accents, the blue paint and the dark wood furniture. John noticed it first. Then Dave mentioned that the space was making him think “British colonial” (more the Caribbean island colonies, than the original U.S. 13).

All of which is fine, but if that’s the direction the room is going, the window treatments need to follow. I’ve already ordered Ambria matchstick shades (color: Fruitwood) from Lowes, unlined so light can filter through. This leads me to my next seemingly ridiculous design quandary: What fabric to use to soften them up. Dave suggested something light, which I think is a good call. Sheers are perfect (typically cheaper than other kinds of coverings), but which sheers are right? There are hundreds.

Well, after shopping this weekend I narrowed it down to two. So I’m presenting anyone who is interested the opportunity to weigh in on Sheer-Off 2007.

Here are the candidates side by side in two photos. Lefty is a polyester. Righty is a silk organza. FYI- the window is east facing and we keep it open a lot of the time. Let me know which you prefer and why. I wish you could touch them.

Sheers  (14) copy

Sheers 2 (21) copy

Since it will be two weeks before the blinds are installed I don’t have to make a decision right this second, but it’s hard for me not to have an opinion now. John has one, too.

07
Jun
07

Crewel Rules!

D and K Master Bedroom
Master Bedroom redos must be in the air. During a recent visit to Dave and Ken’s to watch So You Think you Can Dance I also got to see the big reveal of new bedding and Chinese Hu lamps, all from William Sonoma Home. Dave or Ken, what is the bedding pattern called? Is it still available?

Lovely, no? Still earthy, warm, and balanced (signature Dave and Ken) but with an atypical (for them) punch of color contrast in the fabric design.  And of course, I love me a big, fat pattern.

I’m crazy for crewel–so American (though much older than the U.S.), so crafty, so graphic, and so easy to place in pithy phrases.  The light color is actually a soft blue, not gray as it reads in this photo. 
Crewel Detail

Good job boys!

Quick! Pop quiz!
Mystery Guest
Dave and I weren’t the only bloggers on the Canal last night. Can you guess the name of the mystery blogger with her back to me in this picture?

05
Jun
07

Master Bedroom Don’ts – Before Pictures

Okay, I found the “before” pictures of the master bedroom.
Bedroom Befores
  I promise I didn’t unmake the bed and turn the sofa over just to make the room look extra wrong.  We were in the process of moving the sofa out to give to a friend when I realized I needed to take the before photos. And John had just gotten back from Puerto Rico, so that’s why the suitcase is in the middle of the room.Bedroom Befores
Try not to judge the strong green (Porter Paints, Bayou Bronze) too harshly.  It is part of an incomplete design concept that would have incorporated a canopy for the bed and some other cool fabrics and lighting that probably would have made it work.  Lesson learned:  Know my limits.  Homemade canopies and vintage lighting that requires additional fabrication are out of my league at this stage of my life.  I just don’t have time for that many steps.       
The sofa, btw, was an early design decision mistake.  I bought it because it was comfortable—best nap couch ever!  I wasn’t crazy about the fabric, but thought I would just have it recovered.  Lesson learned: Don’t buy furniture new with alterations in mind unless you get to choose the fabric before it is delivered.

I find it hard to believe myself, but the shades above the bed are the same temporary ones we’ve had since we built the house FIVE YEARS AGO!   Whatever that says about my ability to see a project through, it speaks volumes about the quality of those temporary shades!  Impressive!

The bronze drapes don’t fit in the Palladian window.
Bedroom Befores
  They were also “temporarily” thrown up (again, five years ago) on a tension rod because I wasn’t sure what shades I wanted and the way the window fits into the dormer makes mounting a rod outside difficult.  The ugly globe light fixtures (2nd photo) were the cheapest thing I could find because I wanted more time to think about lighting than I had when the builder needed a decision from us.  So there you have it—a recipe for design disaster.  Be gentle.

The good news is that I bought new bedding on a very successful shopping venture to Target with Dave.  Pictures to come.  The new shades are ordered (delivery in two weeks).  I bought a great 5 x 8’ jute rug (currently under the bed, but I may move it) for $68.00 at Lowes. 

Oh, and John put the chandeliers on a sliding rheostat for me so now we have infinite lighting possibilities.  I’m a big believer in putting rheostats wherever I can have them.

01
Jun
07

Paint and Lighting is Up, Cleaning Tid Bits

Well, all the painting is done except for the detailing. After climbing over furniture to find a spot to sleep Tuesday and Wednesday, we actually slept in our room again last night. The redo isn’t done yet, but here is the wingback we had reupholstered (labor at T & H Upholstery in Indy – $260.00). I apologize for the crassness of posting prices, but I find the lack of readily available information about this kind of stuff kind of frustrating, so I’m putting it out there.

Reupholstered Wingback

I think the fabric (Calico Corners – 9 yards – $200.00 [discounted price]) Dave helped me pick looks pretty good with the paint color. You can see both here.

The redo has been a good op to clean things that I never would have otherwise (My tendency to ignore baseboards is one of the reasons this blog is called “Good Home” and not “Great Home”). When our next door neighbor Mindy heard we were going to hire professionals to clean our rugs she insisted that we let her bring her rug cleaner over and have a go at it.

So Wed. night while John and I painted one half of the room, she cleaned the carpet in the other. THEN she came back the next day to do the other half! She refuses to let us pay her. We’ll have to figure out another way to thank her because the carpet looks really good. Mindy rocks!

Screen Cleaning

To clean the screens on our windows we decided to put them in the shower and just hose them off with a little attachable sprayer that I got John from Restoration Hardware one year for Christmas (it was actually on his wish list). I’m thinking I may clean all of our screens this way in the future.

Here is one of the chandeliers.

Lighting

I think they are hanging a little low, which we can easily fix (going the other direction is a little harder). I’m going to see if I can talk John’s mom into sewing sleeves for the chains—either in champagne or wheat colored linen.

Lighting

My favorite thing so far is the paint color. It’s the only one besides the yellow in our living room that I’ve ever liked the minute it went on the wall. I usually have to get used to new colors even when I like them a lot. This blue is hard to photograph though.

Some potentially bad news. I know I promised before pics, but they may be lost. When my computer hard drive went a couple weeks back they may have been erased. I’ll know next week, I think. Keep your fingers crossed.