Friday, February 15, 2013

DIY'ers..Here's one for you!

There are a lot of holes in this house. Holes where speakers used to be. Holes where control panels used to be. A hole where there used to be a medicine cabinet. Holes in the ceiling where the roof leaked. Holes where doorknobs used to be. (that is the oddest one, I think. Who takes doorknobs with them?)
There was a very large hole where there used to be a very large stove. So we had to purchase a new stove to fill that one if we ever wanted to eat dinner - or scrambled eggs - again. There were also holes where dishwashers went. The kitchen had 2 dishwashers and the downstairs bar had one. I was lucky enough to buy a stove that came with a free dishwasher and there was one left behind so I only need to get one, eventually for the bar. There were 3 holes where there used to be wine coolers. One in the butler's pantry, one in the master bedroom and one down in the bar.  Those holes in particular were driving me crazy because they ruined the pretty look and also, I had filled each one with junk or boxes. (The butler's pantry hole housed my tool box and drill -- very handy for my constant repairs but boy, what an eyesore).

 I scored big last week at Bed Bath & Beyond. I found a lined curtain panel for $9.99 that I intended to use as a shower curtain. When I got it home I found that it wasn't wide enough but it WAS the perfect color. So I decided to make a cafe curtain to cover the hole in the butler's pantry. My idea was to cut the bottom off and hem it to size, using the existing rod pocket and header (which forms the top ruffle) with a tension rod. No sewing maching and no drilling required.
Here you can see just how unattractive some ready made curtains really are. Wrinkly! You have GOT to iron those things if you are going to use them. Also I told a designer friend I was using my upstairs landing as a cutting table. She was spray painting a chandelier, bead by bead, at the time. She said, "Oh the things we do for ourselves that we would never do for clients!"

Once I cut the piece off I realized I had enough for another curtain. This time I flipped it upside down and used the hem as a rodpocket and just hand sewed the hem at the bottom.
This is the finished curtain (ironed!!) in the butler's pantry.My tool box and drill are hiding behind it.
This is the downstairs bar. Home of a future dishwasher.

If you've been doing the math, it means I got 2 curtain panels for $5.00 each. While they are not as nice a fabric as I would normally choose, they are certainly the most cost effective solution I could have for something that is most definitly going to be replaced within the next 6 months.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Details! Details!

Was quite taken with this chair in the lobby of the Washington Design Center. Luscious fabrics. Gorgeous colors! Wonderful variety of textures. All by Scalamandre.
Check out the arm detail. A piece of silk was inserted as a band on the arm and then nail heads were added. Almost too pretty to sit on.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Dream vs. Reality

Would you believe that I have been trying, FOR OVER A MONTH, (sorry, was that too loud?) to add another blog post. Actually, I was trying to add a picture and Blogger was misbehaving badly. I just checked and it appears to be fixed now but I was all ready to write a post that was words only, so here goes.
I have noticed something funny recently that maybe you already took note of. But I tend to romanticize people, places and events so it was a lesson I had to learn by living it and observing it.
If you have been reading this blog you know that I have recently moved into my dream house. I, of course, had a romantic notion of how the space would be, and how we would live in it. I have a great big, happy life by anyone's standards but I noticed that no matter how beautiful, elegant, stylish, spacious, (insert your own adjective) or fabulous your home is, the following is still going to occur:

You still make your own breakfast.
There are still breakfast dishes in the sink when you make dinner.
Sometimes, even if you love to cook and even if you have a fabulous new kitchen with a top of the line stove, you just don't feel like making dinner.
More bathrooms means more toilets to clean.
Light bulbs need changing.
Bigger closets don't mean you still don't leave your clothes on the floor, sometimes.
You still have to get up and go to work every day. When the alarm goes off at 6:00am it isn't easier to get up.
There is still lots of vacuuming, dusting, cleaning, scrubbing, tidying and organizing to do.
The garden hasn't suddenly decided to weed itself.
Things still break.
Things still leak. (make that twice for my bedroom ceiling!)

Still, I love it here.
Now, I've gotta go empty the dishwasher.