March 2014

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old master in new york

I remember a conversation I had with my mother in law years ago. We were sitting in the living room of a house my husband and I had owned for about five years. It was our first house purchase and while I was thrilled to own a home, I was completely intimidated by the thought of decorating it. My mother in law is a natural at decorating and I remember telling her that I’d never have a decorated home because I just had no idea what I even liked.

I never did decorate that home. I stayed paralyzed by the prospect until we moved and I became a renter again. And I discovered decor blogs.  I think the blog that helped me the most was The Nester who promises that it doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful. I began to experiment a little. One of my first purchases was the pair of loud turquoise lamps that I use on my bedside tables. At first we used black shades with them but we quickly got tired of the color scheme. I liked the turquoise but the black didn’t fit.

old master in new york

I was really drawn to blogs featuring houses with soft colors like The Nester and Miss Mustard Seed but I also really loved the bright colors used by Young House Love. I seemed to be in style confusion. Pinterest helped some. I started a board called What’s My Decorating Style and just pinned whatever I liked. I finally started to see some patterns. I really was more drawn to whites and soft colors than I was to the brighter hues that I usually purchased. I also realized that I like vintage items but I like to pair them with more modern lines and colors, like I did in the master bedroom.

The last time you saw the master bedroom it looked like this:

Master with reveal bulbs after

I knew I wanted to change the color of the curtain rod and the sickly pink frame surrounding the Van Gogh print was driving my crazy. I loved the gold framed Van Gogh I saw in the House Beautiful magazine in January:

house beautiful pic

I debated and debated about colors. I considered spray painting the curtain rod gold and painting the frame gold. I mentioned this to hubby thinking it would work as I have a large wedding photo in a gold Baroque style frame that has always hung in the master bedroom (you can see it in the top picture of the old master). His answer surprised me. He said he never thought that frame was “me.” Huh. That gave me pause. I looked back at my Pinterest board at the many pictures with grays and whites and soft pastels and decided maybe silver would be better than gold.

I decided to go for it and bought a can of Valspar spray paint in brushed nickle. I didn’t want it to be too shiny. I wanted a softer silver tone. I gave the rod one coat of primer and two coats of spray paint. I love how it turned out:

I had no intention of risking taking that large slab of glass out of my picture frame, so I taped off the glass and painted the frame by hand with some silver acrylic paint I had on hand.

metallic paint

It took three coats to cover (luckily there was enough paint in that little tub for 3 coasts plus some left over!) but it didn’t take long before the frame looked so. much. better.

master bedroom little closer

When I got everything hung up, things started to come together and make sense. I realized my daffodil painting would look perfect hanging over my nightstand. And I was ready to let go of the loud turquoise lamp on that side. I grabbed my large white lamp with the gray shade from upstairs and stuck it on the nightstand. Perfect!! My mind started twirling with the possibilities. I ran to the closet and grabbed my furry gray throw pillow and a duvet cover someone gave me with soft turquoise and gray and brown tones to throw across the foot of the bed. Then I stepped back and breathed a big sigh of relief. Those turquoise lamps had been driving me crazy and I didn’t even realize it! The space feels so much more like me now. I made all the kids and the husband come look. I thought they’d be as awed as I was. I pretty much got a lot of “that’s nice Mom” comments.

Master bed room

mb side view

While I was working on this little nook, I received an e-mail from One Kings Lane asking me if I’d like to check out their new Home Decor Resource Guide. If you are struggling to define your style, check it out. It is a terrific resource which includes a Home Decor Shopping Handbook and detailed descriptions with photos of furniture styles all through history. I could literally lose hours browsing around.

One article I found in the resource verifies that you do not have to be a professional to have a nicely decorated home. 9 Easy Ways to Add a Sense of Luxury to Any Roomgives some beautiful, easy and even some free ways to upgrade your space.