Friday, November 30, 2012


When Lila was born, someone gifted us with a collage photo frame, similar to this one.

Photo Courtesy of Amazon
I don't have a before shot of our frame. Whoops! Ours actually says "Bundle of Joy" on the side. It's very, very sweet. However, and this is my problem with all collage picture frames, I never have pictures that fit into the weird sized spaces. My good intention was to print off some pictures in these odd sizes, but it never happened. Honestly, after Lila died, I couldn't handle a lot of pictures around me. My BFF framed one snapshot for us and we kept that in the living room, but that was really it.

Finally I started framing and placing around some other Lila shots and I remembered this frame. I pulled it out of our "things we haven't found a home for even though we've lived here two years" box. Same problem, though. So what to do with a collage frame?

I realized maybe I could remove the wood strips that divided the collage frame. I took the frame apart, and voila! The framing was actually just really thin strips of wood (maybe balsa wood?) connected to the frame with heavy duty staples. Using a flathead screwdriver I pried the staples up. Then I was left with this!

It was still a non-standard frame size. I pondered having one picture made in this size, but after looking at it closely I realized it was the perfect size for 4x6s!  I just needed something to go behind the pictures. I dug through my scrapbag and came up with  a small piece of natural linen.

Success! (You'll note these pictures are heavily pixelated. This is because I'm breastfeeding in them. And I fully support breastfeeding and certainly fed Lila any and everywhere. However, I figured no one wanted to look at my breasts while they are having lunch!) Walgreens has had a couple of free 8x10 photo events (whenever I see a code, I always post it on Facebook and Twitter!) so I've scored...

Four nice 8x10s of Lila. I have a couple of dollar store frames...

 but need two more. I hope to find a couple of non-matchy frames at the thrift store, but I've struck out the last few times I checked. All the frames (the birch tones of the Bundle of Joy frame never really worked for me) have a date with spray paint this weekend, and hopefully I'll have a little frame cluster hung up by Monday!

This is the de-collage ready picture frame as it hung in our bedroom! Sadly, it was the only thing hanging in our bedroom (our bedroom is so tragic, even though we have a couple of awesome pieces of furniture in it. I'll post embarrassing pictures soon).

Total cost of project: $0. That's the way I like it!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Creating Easy Embroidery Patterns

I love embroidery, but easily accessible embroidery patterns are often kind of corny. I don't want to embroider geese. But it is incredibly easy to create your own modern embroidery patterns! And the best part? They'll be free!

Most embroidery patterns available at the big box craft stores are...not my style. And probably not so much yours either. Sublime Stitching (I know, I talk about the amazing Jenny constantly) is a fantastic resource for great, modern needlework patterns. I can't recommend them enough for the beginner stitcher.

However, it's super easy to make your own. Here's a little project I whipped together using royalty free clip art.

It was a great little project, because I spent less than two hours total on it. I wanted to make something Navy related for J for our in progress gallery wall and make him a little present to celebrate a personal milestone.

How to whip up your own free, easy embroidery project?

Google for a free stock image. I wanted an anchor. Luckily, the blogosphere is full of awesome women who have provided great free printables. Craft Ideas designed this as a coloring sheet. Coloring sheets work well as embroidery patterns!

Anchor Courtesy of Craft Ideas
I needed an anchor that had room to put "USN" (which is what J preferred to "Navy"). I saved the image to my computer and opened in Picasa (which if you are to cheap or poor to buy Photoshop is an awesome alternative). I clicked on text and found a simple font (simple fonts are key for embroidery novices) and typed in USN.

Now I printed out my US Navy anchor pattern, laid it on the table and put a scrap of white fabric over it and carefully traced it onto the fabric with a narrow pointed marker. This is an embroidery no-no. You are supposed to use a special transfer pen. Eh. You could totally do this and it would make you a better person than I am. I am cheap. This works. I wouldn't do it on a project that would have to be laundered (like a baby onesie or shirt), but for this? It's fine.

I stitched the anchor out in backstitch and it looked fine. But I decided to kick the project up to the next level and do some freehand shadowing, also in backstitch. That's the cool thing about embroidery, it's very open to interpretation and improvisation.

It's currently hanging in the hoop I stitched it in. The light wood is bugging me, so I foresee a date with spray paint in the hoop's future.

Does anyone else use free printables in unexpected ways? Or have other ways of acquiring free embroidery patterns?

( I’m sharing this at the Dare to DIY party hosted by Decor and the DogMaybe MatildaNewly Woodwards, and Two Twenty One!)
Check out this post at  Liz Marie's blog, Savvy Southern Style, Be Different Act Normal, Sweet Boutique, and House of Hepworths!)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

A Little Thing Called Tracie Luck

My mother coined the phrase "Tracie Luck" to describe the often insane goings on that I can set off simply by existing. Today we'll focus on my often insane interactions with utility companies.

Graphic From Southern Garage Bands

This is an oldie but a goodie. I moved into my first house, which meant I had to arrange for natural gas for the first time (apartments down here tend to be electric only). So I did. Then a couple of months go by and I realize I've never received a bill. I call. They ask me should they send the bill to the service address instead of the billing address? I'm perplexed, since I only have one address.

Turns out? They've been sending my bill to a huge government contractor in the area. One I have no connection to. Why? Who knows! This, by the way? Actually never gets fixed. Every month I have to call them to get the bill amount, and ask them to send the bill to my address and remove Government Contractor's. Every month they apologize and say they will. Never happens. Computer fluke? I finally switch gas providers.

A few weeks ago we get a notice on the door stating our power had been turned off due to non-payment. Except I had paid it. So while our poor pets froze (it was, naturally, the coldest day of the year) I headed down to the power company. I'm not happy. I pull up our bank account and see where the check cleared. They are perplexed...until they realize they credited our payment to another account.

Whoops. Maybe I did bear some responsibility here. I pay all our other bills online, but the power company charges $4 to process online payments. This makes me angry. We live a couple of blocks from their office so I usually just drop the payment off. Naively, I thought that since I saw the money leave my bank account all was good in the world. Nope. From now on I'll log onto the system to make sure the payment actually went to our account.

Photo From My Town Rochester
This was the amount of water that came out of my kitchen faucet Monday afternoon when I went to fill the dogs' bowls. Yep, our water was off. Water is important to everyone. However, J suffers from Crohn's and we're in the midst of a flair. So water is INCREDIBLY important to us. 

I call the water company. After forty minutes on hold they tell me they have absolutely no idea why my water is off (I'd paid our bill, thankyouverymuch). No order in the system, no construction in the area. They tell me to call a plumber,

I'm seriously a very polite person, and I'm actually shy and hate making a scene. This is the point where I ABSOLUTELY LOST IT. My husband's sick and a utility I've paid for is off. After a few minutes of ranting they agreed to send someone out.

And? They'd meant to turn off the neighbor's water.

I don't know that there is a takeaway from this. But I feel so much having shared. Actually, there is a takeaway. Keep your receipts in an easily accessible place so that when your local utility company turns off your power/water because someone else didn't pay their bill it's easy to prove you are in the right.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Absolutely Bewitching

J occasionally gets a little annoyed with me when we are watching a movie/television show and I get distracted by the great lamp/sofa/bed/art/architecture/random decor. There's a lot of great decor in movies and tv shows to get distracted by. I thought it would be fun to assemble some of my favorite fictional spaces and talk about what makes them great.

Hooked On Houses

Growing up, Bewitched was one of my favorite television shows (thanks, TBS Superstation 17!). And even then I LOVED Samantha and Darrin's house. Hooked On Houses did a post about 1164 Morning Glory Circle a few years ago covering the whole house.  I want to focus specific design aspects of the set design of Bewitched, though, so this will be a different take. The Stephens purchased a Connecticut Dutch Colonial early on in the series. Here it is before they bought it, but after Samantha twitched her nose and gifted the house with some cute awnings.

Bower Power
When I gazed up Bower Power's first master bedroom  I realized their over the bed painting looked very familiar. Okay, I actually squeeled "Katie Bower has Samantha's foyer painting!"

LeRoy's Pink Fist
See it over Samantha's shoulder, with some horrid wallpaper, a terrible plant, and cute little credenza.

LeRoy's Pink Fist
Here it is over Darrin's shoulder! Okay, so this isn't just the foyer painting from Bewitched. It's actually a Rembrandt entitled "Girl With a Broom," painted around 1640 (yes, I went to college. Yes, I took some art history classes. Yes, I still think of this painting as Samantha's entryway painting). I think the joke is that Samantha was supposed to be the girl in the painting. When the Stephens house was redecorated, this awesome painting was removed in favor of a mirror. Sigh. However, the painting is a classic and it's fairly easy to find a reproduction.

Tartan Scot
These pictures aren't quite right. The first few seasons of Bewitched were shot in black and white, but later were colorized. So...yeah. Just enjoy the shapes! Don't you love the Danish Modern furniture? I think the coffee might be from the Lane Acclaim line. Maybe not. Still a great example of a more conservative yet still very fresh mid century modern coffee table. And that sofa! OMG! Those LINES.

Thrive Nixon Sofa
The Thrive Nixon Sofa in in Cordova Amber is very similar to Samantha Stephens's hip Danish sofa. Feel free to twitch your nose as you lounge upon it.

The Bewitched set decorators used many famous artists beyond Rembrandt. This is a Picasso hung horizontally instead of vertically on the brick wall fireplace. Love.

Hooked On Houses
A gallery wall in the corner of the Stephens living room shows off some more of an incredibly awesome art collection, and a colonial American style chair on what appears to be grasscloth walls. Honestly, this setup wouldn't look out of place on Apartment Therapy.

Ahhh. Here it is. One my very favorite pieces in all of TV Land. The Hans Wagner Papa Bear Chair. The Mid Century era is FULL of absolutely incredible chair design. Out of all of them, this is absolutely one of my favorites. It's such a sleek, playful twist on the standard wingchair. I'd ignore the insane colorway of this photo and focus on the lines. I think the colorist went a bit crazy (for some reason I feel like I've read the actual chairs on the set were brown).

Papa Bear Chair
Feast your eyes upon the gray Papa Bear. Doesn't he look yummy? Modernica still makes this chair, and it can be yours for only about four grand! Sigh. This belongs under the file things I probably will never own....

Hooked On Houses
Here you can see Samantha walking from the living area into the dining room. The kitchen is visible through the oh so era appropriate pass through. Again, I can't get enough of Samantha's sleek Danish Modern furniture choices. That table and those chairs still look amazing (I feel like I should know the designer, but I can't place them). And I love the open floor plan of the Stephens' house. Great flow.

Kitchen and Residential Design
 Yes. Oh yes. Oh my gosh, YES. I love so many things about the Bewitched house...but this might be favorite. Even over the Papa Bear Chair. Well...different kinds of love. What is Samantha standing next to? Why, that would be the Frigidaire Flair.

Kitchen and Residential Design
The Flair was produced by Frigidaire in the 1960s. The oven(s) were on top and the stove burners were located in a pull out drawer. The design is so incredibly space age that every time I look at it I can feel the optimism technology fostered in the 1960s. Really, I bet young women cooking on it in 1962 felt assured they'd spend their retirement visiting Mars. It's such a happy stove!

Kitchen and Residential Design
Here it is with the door open. Flairs are pretty beloved in the vintage community. I'd love to have one. My oh so practical I was an electrician in the Navy husband thinks its insane to buy a fifty year old stove. I think he doesn't have the proper spirit of adventure! (Also, check out the vintage sunshine yellow Pyrex!)

Hiss by Toban Nichols
Here's something every Bewitched fan needs to own. This amazing digital portrait of Agnes Moorehead's Endora is by Toban Nichols and is entitled Hiss. I've been obsessed with it ever since I saw it in this Apartment Therapy House Tour. I think it would look incredible in pretty much any room of our house.

So, those are my favorite bits and pieces from Bewitched. What television shows or movies feature houses you can't get enough of?

This post contains an affiliate link.

Monday, November 26, 2012

DIY Action Squad Day Is Here

Hello! Young House Love has opened their own book related link party and DIY Action Squad's own Kenz was featured in their post! We are so proud!

Thanks for stopping by, and please link up to your project here if the spirit moves you!

The first project day of the DIY Action Squad is here! A quick recap: Kenz, Emma, Stephanie and I all met, more or less, through the Young House Love comment section. And, as I'm sure anyone who would read an even sorta kinda DIY blog already knows, a certain book was recently published to some acclaim (if, you know, you count making The New York Times best seller list as acclaim).

So to celebrate Young House Love's amazing success, and have a sort of official reason to start trying some of the awesome projects from their book, we decided to each give a project a go.

As soon as a I flipped through the book I knew I wanted to tackle the painted window shade. We have many difficult windows here at Casa MCM and I'm always looking for a budget friendly attractive solution (which sometimes don't work out). We don't use a window covering on our bathroom window (shocking!) during the summer because we don't really have a near neighbor on that side of the house, and we have a stand of trees right outside of the window which attracts mad birds. It's nice to watch a nature show while you brush your teeth. But now the leaves are gone, and we are feeling a little exposed. 

So I picked up a $5 roller shade (as my Twitter followers already know). Then I got out my beloved Frog Tape and our so old it's not really level level. We stretched out the roller shade on our dining room table and got busy.

J, bless his heart, helped me. Sherry and John did a couple of simple vertical stripes. I decided to complicate matters by doing ALL horizontal stripes. We made them as wide as the level to keep things simple and marked it with a pen on each side to help keep it level. (If you are going to do this project, having someone who is OCD is very helpful. Thanks, honey!)

Then we put down the tape. It was definitely easier to do with two people. One of us on either side of the shade, making sure the tape was positioned over the pen mark helped ensure straight lines.

Emily stood on J's shoulder the entire time we did this, silently judging us. I don't know how we'd ever get any project done around here without Emily's constant, dedicated supervision. Yes, my coat is laying on the back of the sofa, and no, I have no idea why I left my jacket there. Also yes, I had no idea where my jacket was the next morning. Taping off the stripes went faster than I thought. We spent around 20 minutes doing it.

Here's where I accidentally stopped following Young House Love's instructions. After reading the instructions, I was absolutely certain I was supposed to use spray paint (why would I think Sherry Petersik would design a project around spray paint? So perplexing!). Yeah, I wasn't. I was supposed to use regular latex paint and apply with a paint roller. Whoops!

However, it worked. It was easy. After carefully spraying the shade with constantly moving, even strokes I pulled up the Frog Tape while it was still wet.

Then we had a little bit of fail. There was some bleeding. I was super upset. J figured out where we went wrong. We taped up the shade at night. Then the next morning we just took outside and sprayed away. In the extreme cold. Our living room is also pretty cold at night. So the tape probably drew up during the night, letting some paint seep through. It's not awful. I think I can take a whiteout pen to clean up a few edge issues.

The finished project! Naturally, we haven't hung it up yet. We tried. Oh, how we tried. But naturally this house also manages to foil me. The drywall in the bathroom is apparently made of sawdust and fairy wings, and J didn't like how it acted when he tried to put up the brackets. Of course none of the anchors we have on hand worked and we couldn't find the ones he wanted when we went out yesterday. We'll get it up tonight, hopefully.

The project was super, super easy. Even after I made it more complicated and lost the ability to read! It was quick, the instructions I messed up were easy to follow and very clear (it was a Middle Class Modern reading fail, not a Young House Love writing fail). It was also cheap. The roller shade was $5. We already had the paint and Frog Tape on hand. Taping the stripes took a little bit of time, but painting the shade was fast. Taping the stripes would've been less time consuming had a done YHL's simpler stripe design.

I actually like that I didn't follow the instructions. Stay with me here. The YHL book is stuffed with great projects, and you could recreate the projects exactly and be super happy. But it also works as inspiration, and gives you the basic tools you need to personalize the different projects or go in a completely new direction. Painting a roller shade honestly never occurred to me.

So it up, baby! Link up your YHL project (book, blog, or otherwise) here. Then go visit Emma, Stephanie, and Kenz, and link up on their site! Even if you don't have a blog, just upload a picture. We want to creep on your project and see how they turned out! Please link up to our blogs, though, on yours if you join our party!

You can also find this post on Homemade Ginger, Homework, and Sugar Bee Crafts!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Seriously. Someone Thought These Pictures Were A GOOD Idea!

We all have a our little hobbies. One of my favorites is house gawking. I'm completely content to spend an afternoon wandering around different parts of town, checking out the housing stock. Internet realty searches makes this little hobby even more fun. I can look at houses all over the world and never leave my bed! So yes, I run random property searches and enjoy peeping at other houses and lives.

Now, realtors who only post one pictures (argh!) or even worse, NO PICTURES (double argh!) totally ruin my funtimes. Bad pictures also aren't a lot of fun, and there are a lot of bad realtor photos floating around real estate listing sites. However, sometimes you look at pictures and think, wow, it would've been so much better if you'd never ventured forth with your camera. Today we will look at one of those houses.

Tragically, this house is located not to far from where we live. The outside looks like an older, cute little blue cottage. But then the inside. Oh, god, the inside.

Something about the bright, happy picture hung on paneled walls painted black amuses me. I'm not against dark colors...but wow.

Props to the perfectly straight painted ceiling stripes (that's the kind of project that would drive me insane. Sadly, though, they really point out the terrifying lumpiness of the ceiling. Also, lets take a moment to ponder the amazingness that are vintage pine kitchen cabinets. These babies are indestructible. Ours are over fifty years old and are good shape. These cabinets are the only part of this house that doesn't make me want to run away screaming.

Do you know I've never considered the window next to a baby's crib as the absolute perfect place to store a rifle? I guess I just don't put enough thought into creative firearm/nursery storage! I can't decide what I find more horrifying. That someone feels like a nursery is a perfectly appropriate place to store firearms, or that no one thought it was a bad idea to take a picture of a gun hanging over a crib and slap it up on MLS.

Let me be real here. There are plenty of days where I lose control of the laundry. I'm not judging that. HOWEVER. Did the realtor just bust in, lock the family in another room (before the baby could grab the conveniently placed firearm) and take pictures against their will? Did the realtor then look at the photos and think yes, these will really get this property sold? (Amusingly, the listing is described as "having a stable rental history." I can't even.) Or did the realtor decide to be real, so that people would know what they were getting into when they asked for a showing?

I know this property got struck off my imaginary property list!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Turkey Day Table

I've had a Pinterest board for a really long time, but I've never entered a Pinterest contest. The Wayfair Turkey Day Table  contest caught my eye. True confession? For some reason I thought Wayfair was a chain I never liked focused on building their internet presence. Not bad, really, just not my style. Yeah, I was wrong. Wayfair (and they aren't paying me, nor is this a requirement for the contest) has a really wide ranging group of wares, including a bunch of things I really, really like. Like Saarinan tables.

So. Without further ado. Things I would use if I was hosting Thanksgiving. This tablescape would also work for Christmas/holiday entertaining. Easily tweaked! I knew I wanted a vintage modern table. Something that recalled the spirit of eating holiday dinners at my grandmother's house, but with a more modern twist. You can see my whole board here.

Johnson Brothers Friendly Village

First things first. DISHES. We actually really need to buy some grown up dishes, and I'm going to do my best to convince J these are the dishes we need (I think he's going to declare these dishes "Delusions of Grandma," which he recently christened my decorating style. The boy simply doesn't appreciate vintage.)(I actually showed them to him. He absolutely hates them is amenable to further conversation about them.)

These dishes are, admittedly, a lot of look. To freshen the whole thing up I'd use the dinner plate and soup bowl and leave the other pieces for other occasions. A simple white salad plate stacked between the two helps cut down on pattern overload. I'd also use very streamlined silver and glassware to keep the whole thing "grandma inspired" instead of "strictly grandma."
Copper Mugs

I'm digging mixed metals in general. Incorporating them into the tablescape helps tilt the scales back towards "modern." Thrift stores are FULL of awesome platters in a variety of metals. I've never seen anything like these copper mugs. I'm seriously lusting after them. They'd be perfect for desert time coffee, especially when pared with...
David Shaw Metal Platter
A very modern silver platter. Imagine a few of these scattered around the table, holding tiny cupcakes and cookies. Mix in the saucers from the Friendly Village pattern for each person's use. Sophisticated vintage-ness.

Champagne Ball Shaped Votive 
Don't you love these? They just look so warm and inviting, yet festive! I want to march a line of them straight down the center of the table (I hate high centerpieces!). I think these could be easily DIY'ed. I'm imagining spray painting dollar store glass votives and then dabbing at them with a Q-Tip before they dry to achieve a mottled look. Hmm. Now I want to try it. #AddItToTheList
Owl Glass Pitcher
My feelings for this pitcher are ridiculous. I want to bring him home, name him Maurice, pat him on the head in the morning, and fill him with delicious drinks. I'd only let my favorite people have the honor of drinking from Dear Maurice.

Honestly, it's cute, fun pitcher. Amberish (there's probably an actual term for this, but I have no idea what it would be) glass was very popular for about twenty years and it still findable in most thrift stores. Maurice the Owl adds a little whimsy to the Thanksgiving tablescape and mixing in other amberish glass would be fun and inexpensive.

Linens-wise, I'd go mustard-y for Thanksgiving. Simple green or red lines would be lovely at Christmas, and dark blue and gold would be a less usual but still festive choice.

As for Thanksgiving food...I'm a traditionalist. However, with J I've learned traditions don't always match up. I don't eat green bean casserole (I'm shuddering with revulsion just thinking about it). J was horrified to discover I put diced boiled eggs in my dressing (what? That's my how my grandmother made it!). In the past I've made him green bean casserole and he pretended he loved eggs in his dressing.

What about you guys? What foods do you HAVE to have for Thanksgiving?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

No Idea What to Title This

Warning: this post isn't about DIY and does reference a child's death and adult depression. 

I started this blog as a distraction from the fact my life had just shattered. Shattered isn't even the word for it. Imploded? Experienced armageddon? Within an instant I went from the mother of two and a half month old to...nothing. That's what it felt like. Feels like. That my entire reason for being had just been ripped away and I was trying desperately to find some reason not to fling myself off the planet. I read a decent amount of "grieving literature" and the crazy amount of time you have when you no longer have a small human to care for wasn't mentioned it, but it should've been. A simply staggering amount of time that should have been filled with nursing and reading books and helping Lila learn to sit up suddenly yawned before me. What the the hell was I supposed to do with it? A fifty year old house with lots of problems and a blog to detail all of our struggles with said house seemed like something that could resemble a plan. A distraction. Something.

It didn't work. I mean, it did in the sense I'm still here, but I didn't have the mental ability to organize projects. There were many days when I didn't have the mental resources to organize laundry. Everyday problems that would've once been no big deal suddenly became huge obstacles. I let small problems become big problems.

The biggest problem with renovating our place is that Lila should be here with us. Each choice is loaded. Is this a choice I would make if Lila was here? When I put a glass topped side table in the living room, something I definitely wouldn't do if I had a two year old cruising around the place, does that mean I'm glad she isn't here? Rationally, no, I know it doesn't mean that. It means that the reality is I don't have a two year old stumbling around my house, leaving jam hand imprints on all my furniture. Knowing the reality doesn't make me emotionally accept it any better. Every choice I make that I wouldn't make if Lila was here feels like a betrayal of my daughter.

Our spare room is MESS. Furniture we haven't found a place for, friends stuff we were supposed to be storing "temporarily", and more are all stuffed into this innocent room so that I don't have to deal with it. Because I know what that room is supposed to be. I knew as soon as a I saw the sun pouring in the windows. It was meant to be Lila's room. It should have a pink crib and a vintage dresser and a fifties armchair J turned into a rocker for us and a bookcase overflowing with books and bins full of toddler toys. But it doesn't. It never well. So I leave it full of junk and handwave the idea of turning it into an office/tv room. Because do nothing with it is so much better than doing something I'd never do if she was here. Because working everyday in a room that should hold my daughter in all of her glory sounds like a level of hell I'd just as soon avoid.

Why am I writing all of this? Because it's the holidays, and my girl was a holiday baby. Born on Columbus Day. Buried on New Years Eve. But it's the in between. The smiles, the coos, the cuddling, the dreaming of our future as a family. And now its Thanksgiving, and it's the first Thanksgiving where Lila should be making handprint construction paper turkeys and singing silly songs. But it's not. She'll never make a single craft, never sing a song, never ask develop a favorite ritual, never eat desert. And I...will do my damnedest to smile and be happy and not rip my flesh off with my fingernails.

So, I guess my point is, I'm probably not going to get a lot of DIY done. Maybe I will. I might be blogging about a "wide variety of topics" (that's a thing, right?). I'm going to do what every grieving parent does. The one thing we often don't want to do. Survive. And surviving looks different from day to day. 

If you have someone in your life who has lost a loved one, even if the loss isn't fresh, understand that the non-stop barrage of images of happy families and adorable pink cheeked moppets and cute holiday traditions might just be making them want to open a vein. Try to be understanding when they aren't the "fun" people they once were. 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Differences in Decorating

Marriage is many things. It is many wonderful things. It is also a series of compromises. I've mentioned (many, many times) before that J and I don't exactly have the same decorating style. While we disliked many of the same things (shabby chic, super traditional) there wasn't a lot we both liked.

Which was...problematic.

Here is a room J thinks is fabulous.

Photo from Houzz
Wood paneling? Check. Stone? Check. Ugly Comfortable recliners? Check. Now, it is missing leather sofas and he's not a fan of white rugs (because of the messy wife dog). Still, it's pretty close to everything he loves.

Meanwhile, over in Tracie land...

Julianne Moore's Living Room, Featured in Domino, by way of Coco & Kelley

See the difference? I like color, clean lines, and crafty fun times.

So we meld our tastes together. The living/dining room is an ongoing compromise. Lots of wood and brown tones, but also clean lines and fun pops of vintage awesomeness (like the art). The sofa is leather...but it's days are also numbered.

We both love the dining furniture (and will love it more when I replace the seat upholstery). And now the horse art hangs over the table, and looks awesome. Still, though, we need a light fixture over the table for both form (it'll look pretty) and function (there's no light on that side of the room). So when I saw this on Emily Henderson's blog today, I just knew I had found the perfect answer. It's stylish! It's simple! It's cheap (probably the most important factor!).

Excitedly, I showed it to J. Who laughed. A lot. And then asked if I got it off Pinterest. And then laughed some more. Then I asked him if he thought it wouldn't look right over the dining table, what did he think of using them in our bedroom. That's when the following dialogue commenced.

J: Do you remember Green Eggs and Ham?

Me: Yes...?

J: Because...

I do not like them on a wall
I do not like them in the hall

I do not like them over there
I do not like them by the chair

I do not like them with a truck
I do not like them because they suck

I do not like them because they're cheap
They look so awful they make me weep

I do not like them by the door
If people see them, they'll think we're poor

While being poor may be true
Without those people may think your decorating sense has an f'n clue

So after I finished laughing and made him repeat his rhyming masterpiece to me while I typed it in, I remembered why I married him. The man's decor sense might be lacking, but his ability to make me laugh is fantastic.

AND although he doesn't understand the genius of a hula hoop lamp, he's agreed to help me make one next week.

What decor designs cause debate your houses? Seriously, tell me, because sometimes I feel like every other couple agrees about every little thing they do in their homes.


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