Monday, July 29, 2013

Before and After... House Decorating

My house has a first floor bedroom that the previous owners referred to as the Library because it has built-in bookshelves. They also had their comfy chairs and tv in the room, and they had stashed a small desk set-up in the closet.

Here are some "Before" photos from the listing and when I was doing my home inspection. The room was simply decorated, and the walls are blue with a sueded sand effect on the top and solid blue below the chair rail.

When I moved in, I knew that this was going to be the room that I set up the tv in (it was the only room on the first floor with a cable hook up), but I also wanted a place for my British stuff and for the bar that used to be in the dining room in my old apartment, but which would not fit in the dining room of my new house.

So this is what I came up with (and I know the photos are not fabulous, but I wanted to show what I had done now that it was finally done.) The Union Flag was a housewarming gift from Sister K, and on the opposite wall are my photographs from different trips to England (two of London, one of Bath, and one of Stratford). The carpet was from Restoration Hardware Baby & Child. (Sister B had the catalog at her house, and I just happened to flip through it.) I think it is great because the pattern isn't symmetrical.
In the closet area, I took out the closet doors and the clothes rod. The space was more than deep enough for the bar, and the shelf was a nice place to display some of my glass wear. The vintage Tube print is actually a tea towel from the BBC America shop that I framed which was far less expensive than getting a reprint of the poster from the London Transport Museum shop. The sign with the glass wear was a housewarming gift from my friend MEM. It says "Keep Calm and Drink Champagne". As fine a motto as I can think of...
On the bookshelves, I have a lot of my favorite books (as well as the cookbooks that I have been trying to learn to use recently) and much of the Anglophilia bric a brac that I have accumulated over the years: tea tins and trays, commemorative tea mugs, the TARDIS (sadly, only a replica), and my solar powered waving Queen Elizabeth (a birthday gift from PunkRockMom). I don't love the curtains, but as they are blackout curtains, they do the trick until I can figure out something more attractive and equally effective at blocking out the light.
(You can click on the photos to make them easier to see.)

So this is my "Lounge"; a bit different from the "Library" of old. It really suits my style, and I love that I was able to tie together the existing paint in the room with all my stuff. I had to buy new couches for this room, and I ended up getting a couch and a love seat in a deep navy corduroy. I had the ottomans in Boston; they flip over to be trays so I didn't have to buy a coffee table. Much of the rest was repurposed from various rooms in my Boston apartment or the stuff I had stored in my parents' attic (with the exception of the Victoria Eggs tea towel that I framed which I won from Smitten by Britain and The Bee's Knees.) Not too shabby!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

From Screen to Page to Screen

Before last year, I didn't have HBO, or even access to HBO, so I didn't watch any of those HBO shows that people talk about around the water cooler, like "The Sopranos". But after crashing at my parents' house last summer, I made up for lost time by getting hooked on both "Game of Thrones" and "True Blood".

And by "hooked", I mean that I filled my Netflix queue with all five earlier seasons to go back to the beginning of "True Blood" and binged on two seasons of "Game of Thrones" over a long weekend. And also by "hooked", I mean that that I also bought all the books in the series that go along with them. And now I am binging on them. Well, binging mostly on the Sookie Stackhouse Southern Vampire Mystery books because I can read one of those in an afternoon; A Song of Ice and Fire takes longer.

(Don't judge me: I spent the first five months of the year reading 19th century English literature at a rapid fire pace; my brain needs a break.)

And I kind of owe my sisters an apology because I may have said several years ago that "True Blood" was dumb after watching the first episode and being horrified by the behavior/stupidity of Jason Stackhouse, who I now find to be hilarious. Sorry, Sisters!

Team Daenerys
Team Eric
And, in case you are wondering: Team Daenerys (For the Throne! FTW!) and Team Eric (because who doesn't like the bad boy? I mean, really. Even the Bronte sisters did.) And if Joffrey and Bill just so happen to die in the near future, I will not have a problem with that. (Not one little bit.)

And totally shipping Jaime and Brienne. (And not just because of this fake rom/com trailer.)
Jaime and Brienne OTP
All photos from


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