This week, I really truly am cleaning my bedroom All the fabrics; all the boxes, all the everything so that there is a lot of space and room. It’s great to have all kinds of stuff but not so great to have all kinds of stuff piled in junk heaps. It’s funny how just an excess of space give you a freeing feeling. A former acquaintance of mine has just too much stuff in her house and it always made me feel that it was unfinished. Piles of wallpaper that don’t match, only because they’ve managed to fade unevenly, piles of fabric, paper and yarn statches that just never manage to have enough for an entire project. I almost got caught up in that but then I decided that one project at a time was more than enough for me.
Part of what I’m doing (with the help of my husband and son) is getting ALL of my holiday decorations in my basement. You have to open up the door in the bottom of the closet, clamber down a ladder and then have the men hand the boxes down to me. Everything has already been boxed up into bankers boxes, so everything is the same size and labeled and sturdily wrapped with duct tape.
The basement floor is finished with plywood, so I don’t have to jump from joist to joist (I’ve done that and it is scary, to say the very least. I always worry that I’m going to plunge right thru the ceiling.) We have as much storage in the basement as we have in the entire house. It isn’t underground, but rests between our floor and then storefront ceilings with both brickwork and windows, so there is light and a fair amount of insulation from the bricks. It is rarely scarey and free from varmints, bats, pigeons and other scurrying creatures. (Because I put out traps and poison. I didn’t save and label all of this stuff so some varmint can nibble on it!)
Last week, we got the furniture moved all around and I have a bedroom and a sitting room area—exactly what I wanted. When you walk into the bedroom, the first thing you see is my gigantic bed in the corner, with my antique dressers I’m using as night tables and my mahogany ladies dresser. I love, love, love the way it is set up and I have a floral bedspread (it’s the one at the beginning of the blog but looks A LOT prettier! I guess I need to take close up photos of the fabric so you can get an idea of what it really looks like.
Tons of pillows. I bought a second spread so I could add a pillow flip, which is an added portion of spread, sewn upside down and backwards, so that it will cover all the pillows. It has a scalloped edging, which is a dressmaker detail that I love to add to any changes I makes. I add a tailored, one of a kind detail…something that is femininine but not overly so. (Lots of pictures to follow).
I had a friend, oh, this was many years ago, who had a lovely white and green leaf guest room–wallpaper, bedding and lovely furniture that I coveted for years. Now I have one which is not the same but pleases me, none the less. My carpet is sage green and the sitting room has an ivory rug, covered with delicate roses and ferns that echo the fabric on the bedspread, curtains and throw pillows. It is just so lovely to me.
The extra fabric is for throw pillows and the left-over ruffle goes on the curtains, which are plain pink, curtains with a pleated ruffle and the left over ruffle will be the patterned part of a double piping–the piping next to the pleat will be pink and the piping next to that will be the floral ruffle. Sounds like more work than it is. It’s not girlish, but does look very lovely and feminine. But the time all the fabric is all finished, I’d bet I will have spend $500 in bedpreads and curtains. It’s not the most expensive, but not the cheapest I could do manage to spend, either (When I started to look for bedspreads and drapes, it rand from $20K to $150…so I think $500 is a really reasonable amount of money to spent on the entire bedroom.) I still have the sewing room and the bathroom done, as well as Lisi’s and Ben’s room. I have all of Ben’s fabric already purchased, so I just need ot get Lisi’s room bought and then the drapes for the library bought.
The only thing I’m not happy with is the plain silk lamp shades. Too ordinary and Sears-ish. Not fancy enough for me. But that will come. So I have to find the frames and the pretty pale chiffon fabric, along with the ombre fringe and a sugared bridal or wedding picture. Not totally frilly and not over the top, but pretty and just Victorian- fancy enough to make the room look romantic and swoonish. Fresno has a Victorian lampshade club/class that I will probably end up going to. I have the books but I just need to have a little hand one guidance.
My sitting room is in the whole other half of the room and the television cannot be seen from the bed. At all. In the least. I have always felt that the bed should be for reading and the television should be far elsewhere, out of sight and sound. I have one wing chair and am looking for another, which I will slip cover. Wing chairs look perfect in this room, but I need a new sturdy one for my husband, who is hard on furniture. Slipcovers don’t fit like upholstery but they can come off, be washed and stay fresh. I’ve never done slipcovers before but I’m pretty sure I can do it. I have a book. I have pins and a machine. What else do I need? I’m thinking of either a small floral with stripes or a toile all over quilted one color fabric (pictures to follow)
And either a corset back with a criss cross ribbon finsih (very pretty) or maybe a button finish at the back of the seam. Eather one will look just the right like of feminine. I’m even thinking using a shabby chic one color fabric as the slipcover fabric–probably just a plail pink with some pretty button to attach the spipcover onto the chair. Along with a single firm pillow with an extravagant cross stitch work from a company called Scarlet Quince…and if you will just take a minute to look at the patterns they carry you will just swoon. Of course, it will take forever, so I’d just buy a shabby chic pillow for the time bring. A little time off until the real thing gets chosen and finsihed will work just as well.
And once the whole thing is finished, it will be be spectacular and I’ll be so very happy. It will just take about three years to get it all done, start to finish. Although why the heck everything take so long is beyond me!
It will be pretty by the end of it all.
Our side table is my 100 year old sewing machine with two small drawers on each side. There’s a LOT of room in this room—which is the total opposite of our last house, which was totally crammed full of furniture. Totally. SO I’m trying for spacious and roominess. I used to visit neighbors years ago; she left me dozens of first editions and her home was so roomy and filled with air. That is what I loved about about babysitting her pets. The roominess and total silence.
I have two ornate bridge lamps and I’m on the lookout for ornate fabric shade with fringe. Not matching, just….being. I have, for the sitting room area a pretty ivory carpet with roses and ferns and that;s it. Perfectly simply and not fussily Victorian- y, ate all. Mrs. Orr would be so pleased at the appearance of it all.
The lobby, which is the first part of the house you see at all is most gentle. A peachy pinky damask couch, stuffed with down with a lovely wooden frame. Two down chairs–one in the same peachy pink damask and one in a pale gentle green damask, with a round side table (it needs to be oval and not round) to balance out the large Audubon “Swamp Hare” . I found an old Victorian piano silk to cover the side table with all of the colors in it–peach, green, gray, black, coral fringe, with a peach pottery vase where I keep roses. Perfect to my eyes. It needs an oval p;ywood top, with a quilt top and a peachy-pink under cloth, just to tie the colors in together.
Across the doorway is the Eastlake organ which is simple and lovely at the same time, silver frames of family photos. Just quiet and perfect for me. I use a heavy to keep the wood fresh.
Once the boxes are all safely stored away and everything smells deliciously of lemon wax, I can’t think of anything much more perfect. It’s not the costliness of all I have collected but the perfection of all of it together that is pleasing to my eye. Pictures, as I always promise, to come. This time, the battery is dead.
Tomorrow, all the boxes are put away. I just hope my thighs can hold out!