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Pro-Tip Tuesday: How to Mix Patterns

16 Jul
Mixed patterns fashion

Few of us can pull this off: for several reasons….

Mixing pattens can be difficult.  Flip through fashion magazines and you’ll see skinny, gorgeous, stylish people walking around in stripes with paisley looking like they just stepped out of some wildly hip coffee shop that you’d be afraid to order a latte in (latte is so last week).  Ditto with the home mags, somehow the pros can throw 12 patterns together and still come up with a room that  you might actually pay someone to design.  Most of us try it ourselves and end up with, well, last week’s latte.

Pro Tip

This week’s Tip is inspired by the the stylish folks at Decorum Home. We visited Beth Beach and Christopher Beach last week and got some sage advice on how to combine patterns without embarrassing yourself.

Do: Stay in the same color family.  Leave mixing green and pink stripes with blue paisley and taupe polka-dots to the pros.  The combination below is great because while the patterns are very different, they’re all in the same color family.  My only suggestion would be to add a pop of one more color in a few places (probably a solid) just to mix things up.

How to mix patterns: Do

Geometric, floral and solid, but with similar colors. A Do!

Don’t: Use similar scale.  These two could go together if one was much bigger, but they’re too busy together as they are.

Pattern mixing Don't

These could give you a headache if used too close together.

Below is an example of pattern-matching done right; similar color palette, a mix of textures and pattern sizes, good textures.  (P.S. if you love this, it’s all available at Decorum Home!)

Do: Mixing Patterns

Pattern-mixing Do!

 

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Red Chair Market connects buyers and sellers of quality, unique furniture in Austin, TX and the surrounding metro area.  Keep up with us as we expand to other Texas cities soon! 

Shop now for great finds on new, used, vintage and antique furniture.

 

Wordy Wednesday: What is a Coffered Ceiling?

26 Jun
Coffered Ceiling in Bedroom: Redbud Custom Homes

Beautiful coffered ceiling in the bedroom: Project by Austin’s Redbud Custom Homes

There are many types of decorative ceiling treatments: coffered, tray, vaulted, beamed, and my personal favorite, popcorn-texture coated.  OK, not really.  My little cottage had popcorn texture on the ceiling when I bought it, and it was one of the absolute worst remodeling chores I did. I have very strong negative feelings towards whoever invented that stuff.

Fortunately, better ceiling treatments are in style now, and one of my favorites (really this time) is the coffered ceiling.  Basically it is a sunken panel on a ceiling, usually framed in fairly heavy beams. Right now it’s super-hot to do them in rustic or reclaimed wood, but they are often done in painted millwork in more traditional homes.

Originally, coffers were as structural as they were decorative, reducing the weight of a stone ceiling.  In fact, the earliest example of a coffered ceiling can be found from Roman times (thanks, Wikipedia). The style grew to become a symbol of craftsmanship and elegance over the years.  Unfortunately, in the last several decades we’ve largely ignored our ceilings in construction, to the point of even eschewing molding.

Adding some texture back in to a plain ceiling can be a very distinctive way to liven up your space (see some more ideas below). In addition to looking good, it can also help with noise, all those nooks and crannies can kind of sop up sounds.  Frankly, however, it seems kind of hard.  Anything involving the ceiling naturally requires a ladder and holding things over your head.  That said, I’ll probably try it in the house at some point; likely starting enthusiastically it in secret when Mr. Handsome is out of town.  Of course I won’t finish it and he’ll have to help when he gets back, he’s taller anyway. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Here are a few ideas we found on the interwebs if you think you might want to try it:

How to build a faux coffered ceiling

Traditional wood coffered ceiling

Ceiling panels – this looks easiest!

From This Old House – very detailed instructions

Some more examples in different styles:

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Red Chair Market connects buyers and sellers of quality, unique furniture in Austin, TX and the surrounding metro area.  Keep up with us as we expand to other Texas cities soon! 

Shop now for great finds on new, used, vintage and antique furniture. 

Define Design: Mid-Century Modern in Austin (Part One)

11 Jun

mid-century-furniture-chartGoogle mid-century modern furniture and you’re likely to find pages and pages of results.  If you’re at all in to interior design, the trend is hard to miss, and it’s especially the rage in Austin (see another chart at the end). But Mad Men aside–is it the chicken or the egg?–we’ve wondered why MCM has had such a resurgence in the last several years. So we found some experts around town and got their thoughts.

The simplest answer came from Jean Heath, proprietress of Uptown Modern and a mid-century modern maven.  “It’s time” she said.  Meaning, styles have cycles, and mid-century modern’s time has come.  Just like Happy Days in the ’70’s and the dreadful (though thankfully brief) resurgence of stirrup pants, things just come back around.  Many of us who are in the furniture-buying stage of our lives had grandparents with ’50s and ’60s furniture, and it’s natural to feel nostalgic for that time.  Amy of Remixologie had a similar perspective, “I think people are simplifying their lives. For many its is a reminder of a less complicated lifestyle. Less is more.”

The Jetson's

The ultimate mid-century modern living room, complete with robot.

The less is more is a hallmark of the broader Modern movement, begun in the ’20s as a backlash to Victorian excess (see more history on the Modern movement in our post on the Modern Home Tour).  But as the decades progressed, it became less of a political statement and more mainstream. Over coffee with Emily Belyea of Crestview Doors (also champions of mid-century style) we postulated that the prosperity and renewed focus on home life in the ’50s allowed many people for the first time to discard the hand-me-down furniture of their parents and grandparents and start fresh.  There was also a general feeling of relief and wellbeing after the war, and this probably let to the lighter colors and lighthearted designs. Major events like the moon landing seeped in to our everyday lives as well, leading to fun, “spacey” themes, and of course, the Jetsons.

So what are the hallmarks of mid-century modern furniture design, both vintage and new?

Lines

Barcelona chair

Iconic Barcelona chair (image courtesy of MoMA).

Back to the “backlash”,the original modern designers sought to be functional in all things, escehwing doo-daddery.  So MCM furniture is usually very clean-lined and functional.  Early modern furniture could sometimes be seen as stark, but as it gained acceptance by the middle class it necessarily became a bit softer and more comfortable. Also, for some reason, low backs were very popular.   Not sure exactly why, but most pieces from the day (and their current successors) are low-slung.

Natural Materials

Teak inlaid table

Inlays were also popular.

While plastic was having quite a heyday during this time, the current interest in MCM often focuses on the gorgeous wood pieces.  In the ’50s birch and maple were especially popular, trending toward teak and walnut (with some rosewood and mahogany) in the ’60 and ’70s. The best pieces are a celebration of the natural wood grain; lightly finished with not a lot of shine or deep stain.  Fabrics were meant to be durable, synthetic or boiled wool.  Nowdays we usually celebrate the aesthetic with modern materials, and probably a bit more pattern than was common back then.

Colors

Uptown Modern teal sectional sofa

Epitome of mid century modern.

In the 50’s and 60’s, much of the original upholstery was in neutral colors; black, white or brown, for practicality’s sake.  But color was added in accessories In the ’70s things started to brighten up, leading to the orange and gold many of us may remember.  Today, these colors are often tweaked to look a bit more contemporary, turquoise is becoming a deeper teal, mint is more emerald-y and harvest gold becoming more of a mustard.

So, now you’re intrigued.  But how to go about hipping up your place without making it look like a movie set?  Stay tuned for Part Two, in which our experts give you some tips and local resources.  In the meantime, check out the Market for some MCM finds!

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mid-century-furniture-chart-region

Pro-Tip Tuesday: Where to Hang Your Curtains

4 Jun

Hanging curtains can be scary, and not just because of the risk of toppling off the ladder enveloped in fabric. Draperies can make a huge difference in the appearance of a room, but to get the most out of your efforts you need to hang them in the right place.

Where to hang curtains

Pro Tip

Heather Harkovich of Heather Scott Home and Design gave us some good guidelines. Apparently, many of us are kind of miserly when it comes to draperies, hanging them too close to the window, hampering the view and making your windows look small and inconsequential. To avoid this tragic mistake, follow Heather’s advice:

  • The curtain rod should be hung at least 6″ above the top of the window, preferably 12″
  • Same with the width, the rods should extend 6-12″ beyond the molding
  • Place your brackets far enough out that the curtains clear the molding

See more details and suggestions on Heather’s blog.  Now get hanging!  And don’t forget to ask someone to hold the ladder.

See more Pro Tips; and be sure to connect with us so you don’t miss anything!

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Red Chair Market connects buyers and sellers of quality, unique furniture in Austin, TX and the surrounding metro area.  Keep up with us as we expand to other Texas cities soon! 

Shop now for great finds on new, used, vintage and antique furniture.  

Austin Outdoor Living Tour: Surviving the Summer in Style

28 May

Ah, summer in Texas.  The heat, the humidity, the mosquitoes (how do those dang things live through a drought anyway?).  Austinites have learned to be creative about living outdoors, with pools, waterwise landscaping and of course, the Hot Sauce Festival.  This Saturday you’ve got a chance to see some more unique ideas at the 3rd Annual Austin Outdoor Living Tour.

This year’s tour features 5 houses, all with a different take on outdoor living.  From the uber-modern design on Winflo, reminiscent–to me anyway–of Palm Springs, to a classic Brentwood cottage fitted out with a breezy screened porch, you’ll get great ideas on how to make your home an outdoor paradise no matter what the temperature.

Austin Outdoor Living Tour

Saturday, June 1st

11:00-5:00

Tickets and more information

Here are a few things I”m dying to check out for myself:

The nifty ceiling treatment above the dining area, how cool is that?

Austin-outdoor-living-tour-winflo

This sleek concrete gas fireplace. P.S. love those chairs too!

Austin-outdoor-living-tour-grosvener

The interesting multi-level architecture on this one, and how it relates to the outdoor spaces.

Austin-outdoor-living-tour-st.-stephens-road

The custom concrete pots, infused with marble dust. Is that like extra-heavy fairy dust?

Austin-outdoor-living-tour-thornton

And finally, I’m dying to see how Mr. Handsome and I handle  hundreds of people wandering through our garden.  Yes, dear readers, this is the home of your intrepid reporter.  Please come by and say hello, we can’t wait to meet you!

Austin Outdoor Living Tour - Alegria

Pro-Tip Tuesday: Painting Crisp Stripes on a Wall

22 May
These subtle stripes add interest without overwhelming a small space.

These subtle stripes add interest without overwhelming a small space.

Adding a stripe (or several) to a wall is a great, inexpensive way to perk things up without spending a lot of money.  You can go subtle with tone-on-tone, or go bold with contrasting colors.  It’s pretty quick too, but getting those really crisp, clean lines can be hard, and blurry edges can kind of ruin the whole effect. I suppose you could get away with it in a dining room and try to convince your guests it was the wine, but better to get them straight to start with.  So what to do?

We got a tip from Mary Pullen from Redux Home Staging and Redesign who learned the hard way after trying it on her own living room.

Pro Tip:

Tape your lines with painter’s tape, then run a very small bead of caulk along the edge.  Smooth it completely, let dry, then paint with your brush or roller moving outward from the tape.  The caulk seals the tape down to the wall, and painting away from the tape prevents you from pushing the paint under it.

Voila! Crisp, clean lines.

Here are a few more ideas for striping it up.

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Austin Downtown Living Tour: Bye, Bye ‘Burbs

13 May
Towers on Town Lake Austin

This could be your view! Photo courtesy of Eric Moreland Properties.

The 9th Annual Austin Downtown Living Tour is this Sunday, May 19th, giving all us suburbanites (or, halfway-theres in our case) the chance to see what life could be like if we were smack in the middle of town, walking distance from the terrace at the Stephen F.  This year is even better, with free shuttles from the various locations, and champagne, drinks and nibbles at several of the stops.

Austin Downtown Living Tour Tickets and Details

This Sunday, May 19th

10:30-5:00

Towers on Town Lake Austin

The white lacquered wall moves to open up the kitchen to the rest of the living area. Photo courtesy of Eric Moreland Properties.

Your intrepid reporter had the opportunity to preview one of the VIP spaces; a super-chic penthouse at the top of the Towers at Town Lake.  This building is actually part of old-school Austin, one of the first high-rise condo buildings in the city.  The space is accessed by its own private elevator (ooh la la!).  Aside from the insane views (the image at the top is the living room), one of the things I thought was most interesting was the moveable wall of shelving that separates the kitchen from the living room. It offers great flexibility if you want to open the area up even more. The lacquered-black cabinetry in the kitchen is also really unique. See more pictures here.

Towers on Town Lake kitchen

Sleek black cabinets in the kitchen. Photo courtesy of Eric Moreland Properties.

Unlike some tours where, after wiping the drool off the floor, you have to leave the home to its actual owners, this tour features a lot of spaces you could actually live in without squatting.

The design challenges are different when creating spaces for unknown residents, and I got a chance to learn a bit from the designers who created the lobbies, interior finish-outs and model units for Park West and the Whitley.  While both of these projects had a rental or sales objective, I got a couple of interesting tidbits that any decorator can use, whether in a downtown loft or not.

Park West Austin Living Room

Serene yet urban. Photo: Jonathan Garza

Park West was designed by Tonya Noble of Noble Design, who did both the original and redesign of Kenichi. Clearly she’s got downtown chops.

This project provided an interesting opportunity to take an urban, industrial space and make sure that it’s livable and attractive to a variety of potential residents.  That required finding ways to both emphasize and soften the industrial feel. You’ll notice how she used organic elements to soften the hard edges, including a cowhide rug, a rustic wood table and live plants to give the space a liveable quality without getting cutesy.

The Whitley Austin Model

Well-thought-out lighting at The Whitley. Photo: Miguel Segura

Kathy Andrews Interiors was the designer at  The Whitley and also had the challenge of designing for a variety of prospective denizens.  The element I thought she used to particular advantage was lighting.  Notice the variety of light sources in the model, including recessed and under-counter lights in the kitchen (why wasn’t this invented sooner?, pendants and track lighting in the living/dining areas.  Because the space is designed to be flexible, she doesn’t know in advance where people will put furniture or artwork, so track lighting allows illumination wherever the resident wants it.

There’s lots more to see, so hop on the shuttle and cruise around downtown, imagining life as an urbanite.  It also happens to be Viva Streets Austin day, and several blocks of 6th Street will be closed to traffic to allow for strolling, rollerblading, biking and anything else active your heart desires.  Well, not anything, please use your judgment.

Have fun!

Austin Heritage Homes Tour 2013: Coolest Old Stuff in Town

1 Apr

Walls-LaRue House The common thread for our recent stories seems to be “old stuff”.  But between the Round Top Antique Festival and the Preservation Austin*Heritage Homes Tour (and of course the fact that you’re reading this on Red Chair Market) the theme is actually really cool old stuff.

So this upcoming weekend is a cool-old-stuff lollapalooza. Start at Round Top (see our tips from last week) then cap it off Saturday with a visit to some of the homes that may have originally housed those treasures. (See the deets and a chance to win tickets at the end of the article).

The theme for this year’s tour is Historic Austin Homes and Gardens, so I’m quivering with anticipation to see not only the architecture, but the grounds.  The 6 properties encompass a wide range of Austin history, with each home showcasing its own take on preserving the past while living in the present.

I got a chance to talk to Jacqui Schraad, Executive Director of Preservation Austin, to get a bit of scoop.  When asked which property most captured her imagination, she said the James Smith Homestead was her favorite trip back in time.  Built in 1841, it was herewhen Austin was a little burg called Waterloo (I apologize in advance if you spend the rest of the day humming ABBA’s Waterloo).

Here are a few more fun facts and secret details from Jacqui and her team of House Captains:

The Academy (Mather-Kirkland House), built in 1889

400 Academy This gorgeous example of Queen Anne style was built at the height of the Victorian era using granite left over from the construction of the State Capitol building. It was owned for a time by iconic Austin architect Sinclair Black. The current owners have occupied the house since 1982 and have undertaken major restoration work.

Keep an eye out for:

  • -The belvedere with amazing Austin views
    -The stuffed peacock in the dining room.  Apparently current owner had a flock of peacocks that she’d had for years when she moved into the house. They’d lived at Academy for a little while when the 5 widows that lived on the street came down all at once to tell them that they couldn’t tolerate the peacock noise. The peacocks had to find a new home and they found a stuffed peacock at Round Top that now resides in the dining room.

James Smith Homestead (Boggy Creek Farm) built in 1838

Boggy Creek Farm Built by James and Elizabeth Smith when “Waterloo” was just a village with dirt streets, log cabins and simple plank houses. Can you imagine?  Not even a TacoDeli.

The current owners acquired the five-acre farm in 1992 and have celebrated its history by turning it in to one of the few truly urban farms in the country.  They grow fresh produce which is sold on market days (Wednesdays and Saturdays) at their farm stand under the ancient live oak tree.

Fun Fact from the owners:
“We named Boggy Creek Farm in honor of the no-longer meandering creek that lies, forever encased in cement, behind the houses across Lyons Road. As a confirmation of the name choice, when we took the concrete lid off of the 150-year old hand-dug well, we discovered, etched in script on the lid: Boggy Creek.”

Hackett House, built in 1920

Hackett House Four generations of the Hackett family lived in this 1920 two-story Prairie style brick house (no, not all at the same time). As typical with the Prairie style, architectural elements of the home emphasize strong horizontal lines. Interior Arts and Crafts features include exposed wood beams and wood trim. It has been lovingly restored and updated to be a practical home for a modern family who also respect its history.

Don’t Miss:

The restored craftsman style trim throughout the home.  Oak and pine floors were intentionally not sanded, in order to allow the natural patina of the wood to remain.

PS: This house will be on the market soon!  Here’s your chance to grab a piece of Austin history.  Although you may have to fight me for it.

Dill-White House, built in 1893

Dill White House The current owner found all sorts of native and adapted plans like quince, spirea, narcissus and blue bonnets, as well as pecan, American elm and fig trees in the garden.  The original plantings have been enhanced addition of period-appropriate brick and limestone walks, paths and terraces.  The gardens are beautiful by day and breathtaking at night under the glow of the nearby Moonlight Tower.

Keep Your Eyes Peeled For:

The original details including the dentil molding, brick chimney, flatwork and cogged porch brackets, the front and east sides of the house are completely original.

Brunson House, built in 1917

Brunson House A beautiful example of Craftsman style, this house has been lovingly updated several times, with each renovation being done with particular attention to historic detail.  The house retains all its original woodwork, doors, long-leaf pine floors, windows and shutters as well as the four light fixtures in the living room and the chimney.  Push-button light switches are still used throughout the house.

Don’t Miss:

-Woodwork restoration master craftsmen Bill Breaux and Janine Bergin will be at the Brunson House during the tour demonstrating the tools of their trade and the artistry involved.
-Unique elements in the landscape including: a wheel from one of the trolley cars that operated on S. Congress Avenue until 1940, a 5 light antique dragon post lamp that provides a wonderful ambiance at night and a teacup dog agility course.

Wells-LaRue House, Built circa 1850

Wells LaRue House

Owned by Austin architect Tim Cuppett, this house was featured in Country Living magazine a few years ago. Built in the classic single-story, “dogtrot” style first popular in the early 19th century, the house originally featured a center hallway open to the outdoors on both ends, and with a large room on each side.

The Ancestor Keeps Watch:

Don’t miss the portrait of Wayman Wells, the property’s original owner, in the master bedroom.

So now you’re primed and ready to go! 

Austin Heritage Homes Tour Tickets and Information

“Historic Homes & Gardens”
Saturday, April 6, 2013
10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
$23 members / $28 non-members
$23 Children 12 and under

Have fun, and if you’re inspired consider joining Preservation Austin to help further their mission. Donate directly, or bid on a fantastic weekend getaway at the Prarie B&B (owned by Shabby Chic founder Rachel Ashwell) in, you guessed it, Round Top!

*In case you didn’t know, The Heritage Society of Austin recently changed its name to Preservation Austin, to more accurately reflect their mission of preserving Austin’s treasured places.

Pro-Tip Tuesday: Right-Sizing Your Rug

19 Mar
Tiny Rug

Even too small for Pookie!

As with clothing, size in a rug can make a statement.  Just imagine how much more elegant Snooki would look if her clothes weren’t too tiny.  OK, bad example.

So while a too-small rug may not convey the same message that a too-small outfit does, it certainly doesn’t do much for your room. To help us understand how to right-size our rugs, we were inspired by Jan Griffin of Griffin Interior Makeovers in Austin.

Pro Tip

When you’re looking for a rug, be sure the size complements your furniture and room arrangement.  The perfect rug should connect all the major pieces of furniture in your room, i.e. sofas, chairs and large coffee tables.  The rug should go at least a few inches under the front legs of each piece.

Here is a before and after example from Griffin Interior Makeovers:

Griffin Interior Makeovers 2

Griffin Interior Makeovers 1

Don’t have a big enough rug? Consider layering a large one under your smaller rug to anchor the room.  See more idea for rug layering in our Cheap Tricks post.

See more Pro Tips; and be sure to connect with us so you don’t miss anything!

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Home Office Makeover Part Two: What a Difference a Pro Makes

28 Feb
Home office makeover before

Not exactly what we had in mind.

As you know, we’ve been making over our home office to better serve as a command center for world domination.  In Part One of our chronicles, we shared the process of getting the built-in bookcases installed.  Once installed, we thought we were done, just slap those books up there and get back to work!  Well, it turns out that just slapping those books up there made our gorgeous new investment look pretty crappy.  So, once again, we turned to a professional.  Enter Mary Pullen of Redux Home Staging and Redesign, who whipped us in to shape.

You may recall that our little space has to serve a multitude of functions: the Red Chair Market command center (i.e. my office), Mr. Handsome’s office, the family bill-paying and filing station, the guest room and the music room.  It is also the first thing guests see when entering the house, so it has to look good.  That’s a lot of multitasking for 120 square feet, but Mary was undaunted.

In case you haven’t worked with redesigner before, they are generally focused on using what you have in new, creative ways. So the first thing we did was wander around the house to give Mary a sense of our style (or lack thereof) and scope out pieces we could use to spark up the room.  We then retired to the soon-to-be fabulous office to brainstorm a bit.

Her first suggestion was to consider covering the back of the bookcases with burlap.  Hmmm. But, I figured she’s the expert (and she’d done it before) so I agreed to give it a shot.  She thought the sofa area could be more inviting; I had kind of ignored it,  but once she suggested adding a pillow, lamp and small table I could see how neglectful I had been.  We both agreed that a more interesting light fixture was in order, the current one was a basic builder version. Finally, she suggested covering the functional-yet-ugly corkboard with some fun fabric.

Home office makeover burlap shelving

In progress.

So after our first meeting I was armed with a list of ideas and a few things to purchase.  My big score was the $5 chandelier from the Habitat Re-Store,  re-wired by my friends at D&W Lighting.  We reconvened a week later and went to work.  First we tackled the upholstering of the bookcases, which was actually pretty easy.  We just cut pieces about 4″ bigger than the area we were covering (we won’t mention that one little mishap) and folded the top over to make a nice straight line. Then starting at the top, we stapled it to the wood with a light-duty staplegun.  Once the top was in place, we could fold in the edges and staple down the sides, smoothing as we went along.  Burlap is pretty forgiving and even hides the staples, so it was a great way to try out the technique.  I’m totally amazed at how it changed the look of the room, somehow the jumble of books looked less jumbly already.

Next we went to work putting the books back up.  Mary “shopped” my house to find some doodads to break up the books and add some visual interest.  She asked me about my work habits (I fudged) and made sure that things I needed and used every day were accessible.  I think she would have liked to have culled a few books, but when I mentioned it to Mr. Handsome he got a little crabby.  Apparently he thinks bookshelves are for books.  So they all stayed.

Home office makover bookshelves

Nice mix of books and doodads.

Next we re-arranged the console area, using it to house the less attractive items like the printer.  I still had a million papers that I felt as though I needed immediate access to, so she suggested putting the baskets under the console for additional storage. Finally, we found a tiny, forgotten lamp handmade by my Aunt to add light to the sofa area, and added a fluffy pillow and side table.

As you can see, the transformation is amazing.  Most importantly, the Command Center is completely conducive to world domination; not only organized, but a beautiful place to while away the hours.

Home office makeover after

Ta Da! I look like quite the professional sitting here, even if I’m just surfing Reddit.

The “guest room” is also much more enjoyable and functional, both when the bed is open and when it’s not.  The pillow, lamp and table added to the spacealso make it a nice area for me to retire to when Mr. Handsome takes over the desk.

Home office makeover sofa area

Imagine sitting here reading Raymond Chandler with a glass of wine…

Home office makeover guest bed

Cat included, whether you like it or not.

While not ideal, we also have a space for the keyboard for when the kids want to work on their scholarship opportunities; they can use it on the desk and it slides under the sofa when not in use. (It’s not a very interesting picture, so I didn’t include it.)

And finally, we found one more use for the room.  It makes a perfect romantic little place for a dinner celebrating all our achievements.

Home office makeover dining room

Celebration time!

Here are a few other ideas from Mary (and one from me) that made the room a smashing success:

  • We painted all the storage baskets a dark brown (actually an “oiled bronze” which she calls magic paint) so they kind of disappear in to the background.  There are two baskets under the console, see if you can find them!
  • We installed a slide lock on the French door next to the sofa – when that door opens it significantly reduces the usable area of the room.
  • (This was my idea) I covered some foamcore boards with the leftover burlap and used them to cover up the open back of the console, hiding the cords (for some reason cords fill me with great angst).

So! We’re finally done, and it was all worthwhile, especially the help from our pro friends.  Below are a few of the Austin-area resources we used on the project.

Austin-area resources

B-Squared Woodworks

Redux Home Staging and Redesign

Bolt Fabrics – pillow and corkboard fabric (isn’t that faux-bois awesome?)

Capital City Upholstery Supply – cheapest burlap in town

D&W Lighting – rewiring several of my old and “found” fixtures

Habitat Re-Store – vintage chandelier