4/5/08

It's in the details


The best thing about a freshly painted room? It's like a primed canvas, ready to be filled. I love the process of bringing the details together, piece by piece. It is a bit like a puzzle, as you turn in circles and try to sense what the room will need next. Here, I'm attaching new switchplate covers.

Fascinating, I know. But I'm picky about my switchplates. I do believe in details. The rest of the house has switchplates of a dark bronze color with a hammered texture that's both exotic and rustic. But I got those on clearance, so I knew I'd have to pick a new style for this room. I ended up settling on these copper-colored ones with just a touch of patina. Later, I'll increase the patina until they look more genuinely "aged".

The next step: this is the part I've been looking forward to ever since last summer when we found two vintage schoolroom pieces for $10 at a yard sale. Jackpot! Since then I've been dreaming and musing about how I would repaint them. I do have an idea firmly in mind, but I'm going to keep it secret a bit longer. For the basecoat, I'm painting on the same color as the walls. This is a small room, and sticking to a monochrome color scheme will keep at looking and feeling as spacious as possible.
Here I'm sanding the old varnish of the wood.

Wow, I really love the light in this room. It still fills me with joy every morning when I wake up and look through those folding doors.

*insert doggie sigh*..."Mommy, can we do something e-e-e-else?"

Out back by the workshop, I'm now sanding the desk. This is the tougher of the two since it's been exposed to the elements and the old varnish is half baked-on and half flaking off in curls.

Wiping it down with a damp cloth in preparation for priming. I'll paint the wood on this piece with the same base color, then paint on the design on desktop and chair seat, then varnish the entire thing, including the metal. I like the way the old paint is "distressed" on the metal parts, so I'll leave it as-is.

And for just a hint of what's to come: I stopped into Meininger's yesterday and bought four square canvases to hang at intervals on the walls. What will I paint on those canvases, and on the schoolroom pieces? Well, I spent last night with a huge stack of old French and Italian design magazines, and my box of inspiration scraps, which I went through with post-it notes while M and I watched our usual three episodes of Battlestar Gallactica. Just a taste, here are three of my inspirations:

Indian print journal...

vintage sea-life illustrations...

a frescoed tabletop.
That's all I'm telling for now!!
Off to take a long walk. We've been blessed with some gorgeous spring weather this weekend and I'm not dilly-dallying indoors any longer!

6 comments:

Fliss and Mike Adventures said...

You are one talented girly!!! Next stop... Flissy's house to do Shauna's room... hehehe...

Carrie&Aaron said...

Thanks for a look inside your house-it was nice to see you getting ready!

Juliette said...

You are in a full creative mode those days! No, wait you always are!
This room is going to be lovely. I just love the little desk and chair and I cannot wait to see what else you're up to.
Thanks for sharing the pics of your trip with your Mom. They were really nice and it's beautiful too to see how great of a relationship you have.
We finally have some Spring weather here and the snow is melting!!!! Everybody was running in T-shirts and shorts today, I am just wondering what they're going to wear in July...

Cari said...

Curiosity piqued.....go and finish desk and chair!!

Yoli said...

The minute I saw the Indian elephant print I got so psyched! Oh Maia, that is going to be one awesome little room. She is going to love it and what's more, your documentation of the work you are doing is going to be extra endearing to her.

I remember those desks, I worked in those desks! I am such a fossil!

Margaret Miracle said...

I love watching the nursery come together in such a creative way!!!