Buying a house seven years ago provided me with the sense of joy and freedom that I had been craving ever since my early days of being confined to the walls (and rules) of apartment-living. Hallelujah, I could do whatever I wished to the inside and outside of this place and nobody was going to try and stop me. I remember drawing pictures of houses as a kid and meticulously listing out how each room in the house was to be decorated – it was finally time to make those plans come to life. And yes, I do realize by now that I probably majored in the wrong field.
I remember the looks on some of my friend’s faces when I showed them pictures of the inside of the house that I was going to buy. You could tell that some of them had no clue what to even say – it was obvious their parents had taught them that if they didn’t have anything nice to say then they should just keep their mouths shut. Honestly, I didn’t blame them. It was quite a scary sight. I should mention that the house was bought as a foreclosure, the previous owners obviously didn’t give a you-know-what as to what the house looked like, smelled like, etc. … and I’ll just leave it at that. Remember the lovely red carpet I mentioned in an earlier post? You can just let that vision guide your imagination …
I saw right past all the ugly and scary though. I envisioned a charming house and knew that my handy brother could help accomplish just that. Thank God for not only my handy brother, but my amazingly helpful boyfriend at the time (now husband) and amazingly helpful parents – there was more work to do than I could have ever dreamed – in my nightmares. Needless to say every single room in the house needed to be painted (that is after all the adorable wallpaper borders were torn down). Ducks, bows, flowers – you name it and it was plastered across those walls. I vowed to never pick up another paintbrush after all that painting was done. I broke that vow quickly because due to my ridiculous love for color, pretty much every room in the house has already been repainted – I got tired of beige really quickly.
I don’t know why I originally decided on a dark beige for the dining room. I always knew I wanted a blue dining room (not your typical blue, but more of a teal). I have no idea why, I just think teal is one of the most beautiful colors that exists. Period. I think in the haste of all the other decision-making that had to be done, I originally picked ‘safe’ colors for all the walls. How boring. So when it came time to re-do the dining room a few years ago, I found myself debating between Sherwin Williams Gulf Stream and Sherwin Williams Maxi Teal. I was a little scared that I would find myself drowning in a sea of turquoise rather than teal if I went with Gulfstream, but due to the lighting in the dining room (which isn’t great), the Maxi Teal was almost too dark and the Gulfstream appeared to be the perfect shade of teal.
Changing the wall color immediately transformed the room, but I needed a little bit more. It was time to rid the room of all the red and gold tones, add some curtains, find some new dining rooms chairs, search for a shelving unit, find a new rug and hang some new stuff on the walls (boy had my taste changed since my apartment days). I wanted the room to have a vintage, farmhouse, shabby chic feel to it, and it was kind of throwing out some mid-eastern style vibes at the time (largely in part due to my obsession with Cost Plus World Market and their inventory at the time), so I had a long way to go.
I finally got there, and the dining room is by far my favorite room in the house. I just love the way I feel when I’m in there. Of course we don’t use it on a daily basis, because who uses their dining room that often? But when we do use it, I get happy. I love hosting dinner parties, casual get-togethers, you name it – any excuse to use our dining room and I will. It helps that our kitchen table sits exactly two people, so anytime anybody comes over and there’s food involved, the dining room’s getting used. And I’m proud to say that I actually did a good bit myself when it came time to redo the dining room. I still purchased a lot of fun things of course, but my hands did do some of the work and I have some DIY projects to share in future posts, so be on the lookout 🙂