Thursday, November 24, 2016

Living Room Then and Now



A few days ago, I browsed through photos taken last October and marveled at the difference a year of hard work can make. I am so glad to be on this side of a lot of the major work. These before pictures were taken well before October, but it took us months to get to the mostly finished stage.

Wall to wall carpeting, old floor-to-ceiling drapes, 
faux wood paint on all the trim, mantle and 
radiator covers, and old wallpaper. 
This wallpaper seemed to be older than a lot of the 
rest of the wallpaper in the house. 
While other wallpaper came off in sheets, this old stuff 
had to be thoroughly soaked and scraped off bit by bit. 

Just ignore the air mattress - we had a friend
stay at the home a number of times during the early part of the renovations.

Carpets and drapes removed. 
Getting ready for the floor to be refinished.

For many months after moving in, this room had a large pile of boxes in the middle 
of it. My goal was to have the room cleared out and fixed up before Susanna could crawl. 
During the winter, I spent many hours painting the trim. It took a coat of primer and 3-4 coats of trim paint. I could have done one more coat of paint, but decided it was good enough. 

All in all here's what we had done: refinished floors, removed wallpaper and painted the walls, painted ceiling, painted trim. Removed sconces above the mantle. Updated the electrical wiring and installed some recessed lights. We also had both windows replaced. I think the previous windows were original, and while they had character, they had too much chipping paint and were very drafty.

It has been a slow progression, because it takes me a while to figure out what to 
do with a space, and it takes me a while to find what I like, but here is the current "after."
We still don't have anything on the walls, but I am actually starting to have ideas. I don't feel rushed or pressured to get those things done, which feels very peaceful. I have to admit that I kind of like fairly empty walls (except for those big areas). They provide a resting spot for my eyes. 

The coffee table and the small green stand in the corner belonged to our former neighbor. She passed away soon after we moved, and so it is special to have them as a reminder of her.

The inside of the door still has the faux wood paint. It drives me crazy, but clearly I have not gotten around to painting it. One of these days...

So there it is! Bit by bit we are making the rooms cozy and liveable. The couch is the only new piece of furniture. Those arm chairs have been with me since college. They aren't my ideal chairs, but they are quite comfortable, and they work wonderfully for now.