Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The living room - ten months later

Just after Christmas last year, I posted a virtual walk through of most of the condo, in part to show everyone what it looked like, but also to have a record of the pre-paint job colors. You can see the living room portion of that tour here.

A friend asked for pictures of the new tables, at which point it dawned on me that I'd never done a series of "after" pictures showing the wonderful new paint (there is no (well, almost no) truth to the rumor I didn't do "after" pictures because I've never managed to have any of the rooms completely clean and picture ready).

Ten months after the painting, here are new living room pictures.

From the loft
This first shot is taken from the loft. The furniture has been moved since the pictures from last year were taken, in part to allow better access to the patio doors (blocking which you can see the box for the grill and a container of "summer" things waiting to be put away). It's a pretty cozy set up when the fire is lit and it's snowing outside.

We'll get to the red wall later. This shot is here mostly because you can see a bit of the ceiling (look above the curtains, where the color changes).

The walls here are a medium brown. The ceiling is done in the color only three shades lighter than the walls. When I get around to taking pictures of the loft, you'll see the color there is only one shade lighter than the living room. So, on the paint swatch, from dark to light, living room, dining room, skip a shade, ceiling. When I have to describe the ceiling color, I compare it to a packet of Swiss Miss hot chocolate - it truly is very similar.

As mentioned in the linked post, the ceiling in the living room/loft goes from where you see it in this picture all the way up to the center ridge line of the roof, simply a huge expanse of real estate, most of which is visible from the living room. I wanted to bring down that height a bit, warm up and make a bit more cozy the living room and loft.

From the foot of the stairs from the loft
As you can see, the white sheer drapes stayed, at least so far. The curtain on the window above the doors, however, was not put back on after the painting (you can see a corner of the uncovered window in the previous picture). Even if they had survived laundering, it would have been a royal pain to put them back up. It brightens everything to have the unfiltered light in the morning.

The plan is still to move the television into the sewing studio, though exactly when that will happen I'm not sure.

Staircase wall - the coat doesn't really belong there
The treadle sewing machine was my grandmother's, a wedding gift back in 1925. The cabinet made the refinishing guy swoon - it's mahogany, and the front and sides are what they call "book matched". The carpenters cut the boards twice as thick as needed, then split them down the middle and opened them up like a book, matching the middles. The two halves of the next board were put on either side of the first "book", so the grain is mirror imaged around the center.

At least that's the way I understand it.

If you make the picture bigger, you will see a measuring tape in front of the machine itself. That's not an inlay, but a decal. The refinishers (we had the cabinet redone about fifteen years ago) stripped around the decal to preserve it. They did an amazing job.

The ratty piece of felt with the pins stuck in it around the head of the machine was put there by my grandfather; I'm not usually sentimental, but I plan to leave it there until it rots away.

The vinyl letters are a paraphrase of Galatians 1:10: For am I now seeking the approval of man, or of God? Or am I trying to please man? If I were still trying to please man, I would not be a servant of Christ. The peach things are little terra cotta cherubs I bought at the Charleston market. They look a bit lonely there.

Red wall
Originally, I'd wanted a deep turquoise as an accent color on this wall. Then both the sewing studio and my bedroom ended up in blues, so this wall switched to red. This picture isn't quite right; the red is a bit darker and not so cherry looking in real life. There isn't as much contrast between the red and brown as there would be between the turquoise and brown, giving a bit more restful feeling.

Red isn't normally known as a "restful" color, but the brown has an undercurrent of red tones, and it works. There isn't a whole lot I can do right now about the hearth tile; the browns and red work well enough with it. The smaller wall quilts I have available to hang above the mantel all look fine on the red background.

End tables, at last. The shelf on the bottom "floats" between the legs, and I see I knocked this one a bit out of alignment when I stacked up the magazines. Distressed looking bottoms, oak tops. Not high end, by any means, but the first end tables I've owned that I actually picked out and purchased, rather than had handed down.

The best feature of the tables, aside from their six inches of additional height? The drawers. At long last I can hide the remotes, the chapstick, the reading glasses. The basket holds only the crossword puzzle book and a bunch of pens, and is only there until I can repurpose it to somewhere else. The basket formerly held all the charging cords, and sat on the floor next to a small magazine rack table that held the sound dock (the table now in the corner by the fireplace in the first picture, in fact).

Sofa table
The sofa table is the only addition, rather than simple trade of old for new. It's not behind the sofa (duh), but up against the wall underneath the clock you see in the "before" pictures.

Again - drawers! All of the charging cords live in one drawer, out of sight but easy to use. The wireless range extender sits on the lower shelf, much less obvious than trying to share the top of the little magazine table with the dock.

The dock sort of hides the power strip. It seems every electronic device I own runs out of juice at exactly the same time. I just line them up and plug them in here.

That bright thing is a mini white pumpkin, held up by two orange ones that are being shy behind the (fake) leaves.

The drawer pulls on the tables are going to be changed out. The plain wood ones are so ... boring. I've pretty red ceramic ones to put on instead, once I locate the right tools.

There you have it. Sorry for the verbosity; I'm tired, but wanted to get this up. Pretty much everything you see is something I already had, simply rearranged or moved to/from another room. I still have some things to get on the walls, like a quilt next to the clock behind the sofa table, and a mirror for the foyer, plus a couple little odds and ends. But all in all, I love it.

If you are local and need painting done, please, please check out Ambrick Painting. They'll work with you to figure out what needs doing and how you want things, and work really hard to get the job done, and done well. They do excellent work; if you want a reference, give me a call or drop me an e-mail.

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