Saturday, October 15

It's Fall Y'all!!!

My mother just read that title and felt faint. I am Canadian born, New Jersey bred, Chicago educated but now fully ensconced in the SOUTH, and this DC mama has adopted the term y'all! Can't help it. I always absorb the accents of the places I've visited and lived. It's a bad habit but funny as hell. Just ask my sister about my excellent British impression when I visit her. It's somewhere between 007 and Dick Van Dyke. Brilliant!!!

Anyway...back to the topic at hand. IT"S FINALLY FALL! Wooo hooooo. Here's to crispy weather and falling leaves and new beginnings. And most importantly to some not-so-spooky decorating. Despite having to lug about 30 giant tupperwares out of the attic, I really do love putting up holiday decorations. I am still trying to convince my hubs to turn one of the rooms in the basement into my dream room - lined with shelves filled with the tupperwares! Alas, he has not folded yet. Give it time.

Here's how it came together this year. ENJOY! And Happy Halloween!











Thursday, October 6

Dining Room Makeover...Again!

As promised...it's time to get back to the fun, fluffy design stuff. Real life is still complicated and hard but one way to get over it is for me to make our living spaces pretty. And then to completely redo those same spaces a couple of years later. Ha! So about a year or so ago, I went shopping to finish decorating the office for Mr. Difficult (OH...which, because of my extended hiatus, I still haven't shown you...more to come on that!) at our local Restoration Hardware outlet store and found this - our dream table on super sale for less than $1,000!

I literally hopped on it and bought it without hesitation. Big mistake. First, I found out it was way too big for our room. Later we realized the reason for it's ridiculous markdown (normally more than $5,000) was that the beautiful reclaimed hardwood was warped, which makes for a fun nightly dinner game of "who can avoid spilling their drink on the curvy table" each night. But did I mention it was like 1,000% off? Oh and that I am the world's most impatient person? But you know that by now.

Anywhoooo...it seated more people than our old, very banged up black Pottery Barn table that we bought for our first apartment and it is gorgeous, so we overlooked it's flaws. When it was delivered, I realized a total dining room makeover was necessary. Yay! And recently, I decided to finish the room. Here it is....ta daaaaa!!!




I love love love the way it came out! It's cozy yet still kind of formal. It's useable without being worn down looking. So let's break it down...You already know about the table. The chairs are all from Homegoods and were a steal! I was really iffy about chairs in this room. I wanted fabric but I have a 9 year old son who is MES-SY. So finding these chairs on sale means that if he messes them up (which he will) I won't be heartbroken. Ok...I will a little bit.

The bookshelves are Restoration Hardware  and are called the Parisian Cornice Single Shelving. And get this...if you join their membership program (like $100 for the year) you save a TON of money on everything on their site. These were normally $850 but as a member they were reduced to $637 each. You can do the math...totally worth joining. Here's a pic from their website. You can see that it's not really a typical choice for china but because the table is so darn big, I couldn't fit a huge cabinet. So I thought there were perfect.


As for styling them, that was easy. I finally broke out all of my china and crystal that we got...ahem...17 years ago when we got married. And while I'm living on the edge when soccer balls tend to fly around my house, it's worth taking the chance to have them on display.



The curtains were the biggest challenge for me in this room. I have purchased, no exaggeration, 8 different sets of curtains and then returned them all. The dark ones made the room feel small and the light ones made it feel like a hospital room. Some were expensive and some cheap. Just couldn't get it right. And just when I was about to give up, I found these panels at my favorite place on Earth....Target. Alas, because nothing is ever easy, they didn't come in the length I needed. So I ordered 5 panels instead of 4 and cut the extra panel into 4 and sewed them on the bottom of the others. And by sew I mean I used that webbing adhesive stuff and ironed them together cuz nobody got time to really sew. Here's a close up. Can you tell????


After all the pieces came together, I added the orchids and candles that I had elsewhere in the house and purchased a great platter (is that the right word?) on super sale from Pottery Barn.


And here is the evolution of this room. I still really love the most recent look - the teal blue with the black table but as I said before, the table wasn't big enough and had been rehabbed so many times it was starting to fall apart. The blue geometric chairs were cute but totally impractical because you couldn't sit on them and squeeze under the end of the table.


After we moved back into the house (2014)




Before construction (2012)


During Construction (2013)


When we first moved in. (2005)

How it looked when we bought it (previous owners)

So there ya go! ANOTHER version of this room. Former versions are all pasted below. Let's hope it's the last, but I think we can all agree it won't be.