Friday, July 6, 2012

Library - Phase I

I have always loved to read. It probably stems from being an only child or the fact that my mom was a teacher and always had tons of books in the house. I always envisioned myself growing up to own a house big enough to have a library. Of course in my imagination it looked like something that belonged in a stately old Victorian mansion not a mid-century house. Nevertheless I am determined that I can create a hybrid somehow and make that dream a reality in our new house. It's going to take some doing but the front room of the house is the perfect space for a library. It's long and narrow and it can be closed off from the rest of the house and its not a room that we would use much otherwise.  The good thing is that with the appropriate furniture it would double as a formal sitting room should the need arise.

I've had a lot of time to plan the move since the time we decided to buy the house and when we were able to actually close on it so I've been thinking about this room a lot. I decided in order to make it a hybrid of my imagined library in a mid-century house it should include elements of both. Paneling would have been a nice compromise, but alas the only paneling in the house was in the dining room and it is now painted over... so the next best thing I could think of was to paint it a nice rich caramel color.

My husband decided that given it is a library, it should have leather surfaces upon which to read. To keep the mid-century vibe going and include some leather furniture, I decided upon some mid-century style new leather furniture from Haverty's. Normally I would prefer vintage over new, but with leather, newer is always better. There is nothing more off putting to relaxing than cracked dried out leather. Luckily Haverty's Contempo line is stylish and comfortable  I am getting the grey (pictured in the back) in order to go with the red accents I have planned for the room. I love the terra cotta color they have, but it is too orange for the room and would clash with the red. I already had two Billy Bookshelves from Ikea, but I plan to buy a few more to make walls of books. I'd like to someday find old lawyer-style bookcases with the glass fronts, but in the meantime the Billy shelves allow for corner bookshelves and are a dark deep color that should contrast with the wall color well.

So it came down to picking the caramel color for the wall... I tried a few different samples with differing shades of brown and gold but finally settled on Coco Rum from Behr as it seemed to go best with the other colors that will be in the room. 

I've started painting the walls now, but I forgot how long it takes to successfully paint a dark color. It's going to take a couple of coats to get it right. I only had a few hours actually paint yesterday, but I am making progress around the room. It's definitely a bold commitment, but I think with the furniture in the room, soft light from the lamps, and maybe an area rug it will end up being a perfect place to hide away and read.

The only thing missing from my ideal library will be a fireplace. Unfortunately this house did not have a fireplace but that was not a deal breaker. My favorite thing about a fireplace is the overall look of it so I hope to someday find a mantel or have one made so I can properly display my mantel clock and Christmas decor!

So Phase I of the library is begun. It'll be awhile before one can read in there but we are on our way! Stay tuned for more!

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Coming Soon!!!!

Wow I just realized it has been MONTHS since I posted anything and I apologize for that...BUT I have been packing, planning and plotting like a mad person. You may recall in my last post that I had said we found a buyer for our house and that we were waiting for things to go through. Well all did go through, and I am happy to say  my house sold to my brother-in-law and his family! How lucky is that?? It could be that the fact my husband has such a large family made the odds better that someone from our family would buy it, but I like to think it was the universe directing things. For me, to let go of the first house I bought, I couldn't be happier that my niece is going to be living there, preserving what we did to it and making it hers.

I may have said it before when I started this blog, but I started packing way before I even had my husband convinced to move because I just felt like it was the right time. Well I couldn't have been more right...  A few days after we decided to pursue the path of family buying our house, CollectoratorOne stumbled upon a new for sale by owner house in her neighborhood. I had been looking exclusively in her neighborhood to fulfill our dream of living down the street from each other as we grow older. I drove by immediately and even in the dusk I felt it could be a potential. We looked at it shortly thereafter and even though we only looked at one other house, we thought it'd be hard to beat this one for us. We closed on it today so now it is home sweet home...well as soon as we get some things done and move in of course. I am really looking forward  to the end result though including many long evenings hanging out with CollectoratorOne! Who knows what kind of adventures will ensue when we live so close to one another!

The house is almost twice as big as our former house and the layout is perfect for being married to a musician! It was built in 1960 and sits on a corner lot. The last owner did some updating to it, but the original intent is mostly still there, but unfortunately not many original fixtures and small details like I had hoped. The bathrooms though retain their original tile, a pink one and a blue one thank you very much so I am satisfied at least with that! (Another pink bathroom is saved!!!) Thankfully there is also no granite to speak of, but we'll be changing the counter tops out anyway. The main thing that was changed was the flooring. All the original flooring is gone (most of which was carpet and so I should probably be thankful  for it being gone), and it was taken down to the concrete and stained. Although not my preference, its very well done and it is a nice dark color. So, for now, we are leaving it EXCEPT in the kitchen where it makes everything look just a little too manly in there.  I am re-formica-ing the counter, putting in VCT and getting glass pane cabinet doors added to show off my kitchen collections (oh yeah forgot to mention that they took all the cabinet doors off as well). These updates should girl-ify it up again!

Mostly I am excited to get started with the move in etc and will blog as I go... Here's a before picture of the outside of the house. We are eventually going to take the trim and facings back to the original color which I have learned was white. A nice red brick with white trim house... Love it! I should probably say it's also a before picture of the grass too because I am notoriously bad at keeping grass alive in the Texas drought! Stay tuned!