Basement

When the pipe burst, flooding my whole basement, we went from an unfinished basement filled with stored items (everything from precious heirlooms to good clothing to countless boxes of old books to my baby’s glider) to an essentially empty, clean space. And this has been an incredibly stressful ordeal. And when I stress, I ruminate. And when I ruminate, I think about design. Although it is probably not an imminent project, I have started to work on the design of the basement, for when we decide to finish and furnish it.
Our goal is to turn the basement into our real playroom. While we have a great third floor playroom space, it isn’t always practical. Especially when we are entertaining and are two floors (and two steep staircases) from our playing kids.
I would love to morph our current playroom into a cozy guest room (aka twin and Go Go’s room) and to make a big, open basement that is completely bright, light and child-proof. Toys galore, fun colors, SAFE and dry.

So I started to think of some ideas.

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or

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And then I felt a little unsettled. So I decided that I could still have fun while sticking to my design roots, with something like this:

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I love the idea of Benjamin Moore Vanilla Ice Cream Walls, a laminate tile floor in that gray, light wood, a teal shag rug, ikea furniture and teal and gold accents.

Fortunately, we already have a sink and plumbing hook up down there, so we would basically need a toilet and walls to have a full operating bathroom. For that I wanted to go bold. I decided on Benjamin Moore Largo Teal (sticking with the color palate I like, but just more of a pop).

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I love this teal and gold motif. This is what I’m thinking:

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So there you have it. Some of what I’ve been spending my nights doing.
Much much MUCH more to come…

A (mini-ish) Master.

As I have mentioned before, the moment I walked into this house, I thought that it was meant to be. However, there was one room that would require us to “trade down” in a sense; the master bedroom. This old house is not equipped with a true master suite of sorts. And so, before we even put in an offer we had our contractor in and plans drawn up for a future addition over the garage. The plans showed a huge bedroom, updated bathroom, big walk in closet…and we have high hopes that this will take place in the future. Truly, like years down the road. But, in the meantime, we had to accept that we would be inhabiting a small bedroom. This notion never bothered me much, as I don’t see a need for a huge master, but for my husband it was his greatest source of stress pre-move. He thought we would feel claustrophobic and confined. He truly worried that our king bed wouldn’t fit. But with a some luck and creativity we found the pieces we needed to make our room not just livable, but lovable.

There is no before photo of this room, as it was used as an office and no advertised, once again, on the website when selling the house. It had white walls. It was not offensive, it was just a nothing. A throwaway. And now it is this:

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It is small, but I prefer cozy. And I find it be a space that is both a little zen (with the sparseness and the buddha) and a little romantic (with the fabrics and the big candlesticks on the sill behind our bed).

So the bedding for this room is the result of major obsessing. While our structural work was being done to the house, we lived with my parents for a month, during which time my mom and I would sit on the Ipad and look at bedding for hours at a time. I ended up finding much of it on Ebay, after falling in love with many discontinued prints and products. During that period of type I probably typed the words “Euro Sham” more than any other human in history. Ever. photo 4_3

Our Duvet is Pottery Barn, but found on Ebay; the throw is Missoni for  Target; The velvet shams are Ikea; the delicate scalloped Euro Shams are Martha Stewart, also found on Ebay (they are on my old bed at my parents’ house and I just had to have them. I told you. I was obsessed.)
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We have discussed This piece before and it’s now my husband’s night table/the home for my clothing items like undies and pjs. Now we’re getting pretty intimate here. I hope you appreciate this! We kept the amount of “stuff” pretty limited here, as we both wanted our bedroom to be a peaceful space; Because in a bedroom you are supposed to sleep. Stuff=mental stuff. Less stuff=peace, perhaps. In any case, his night table houses a framed photo of the two of us, some fresh flowers, a lamp from his grandmother, a relic from my parents’ trip to Israel and a bird house painted by our daughter. photo 5_2

My night table had a lot of pressure to perform; When my former dressing room became my son’s nursery I lost space for a true vanity. So here was my solution: a very cool old table that was given to me by my aunt, but was originally my grandparents’. The mirror was bought at the same little antique shop in Hammondsport, NY where we first bought our Queen Esther piece. The stool is from Material Culture. Framed above my vanity are some my favorite portraits from our wedding; now that we’re in our sixth year of marriage I am conscious that our house can no longer be filled with wedding photos. But our bedroom seems like the perfect place to highlight a special few. photo 4_4

I also joke that my night table is Twin central; My Twinny dear got married in August, so my table was constantly covered in things like her shower invitations and menu ideas from her mom. Now it just holds a framed photo of us, my beautiful bride and me as an 8 month pregnant Matron of Honor. Next to the frame is the beautiful sculpture that she gave us for our wedding. A very special place for me. You can also spot the special shell box that my husband used to propose while on our family trip to St. John almost 8 years ago. photo 2

Here is our chandelier, that replaced a dusty old wooden ceiling fan. It was purchased at the same antique lighting spot in Adamstown where we bought the fixture for our daughter’s nursery. I find it romantic and glamorous and I love it to pieces.
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Across from our bed is a gallery wall with pieces from all over; paintings that belonged to my grandparents; botanicals from my parents; pieces we have picked up along the way. It has been fun to watch it grow. photo 1_3

This dresser is a great story. Because of the size of the room we needed something narrow to house my husband’s clothing. We scored big time at the same place where we ultimately also found our gold dresser, resellers consignment galleryphoto 2_4

It is beautiful, carved ornate solid wood. It was on sale. We got it for 39 dollars. We could not have done better. photo (20)Finally, my husband’s parents gave us this beautiful rug to round out the room. It is woven wool and reversible and ties everything together while maintaining the color scheme that is important to me (of course).

So our bedroom is small, but I’d say small and mighty. And I really like it. And even my husband, doubter of all doubters, agrees. How about you?