Thursday, March 25, 2010

Home improvements

I long ago learned the value of color in making a space more habitable.  At one point, I thought I was one of those that liked the starkness of whites to "clean up space."  But I am in actually much more comfortable when in a non-white environment.  It feels unnatural at a most basic level.  I have to thank the contribution of my partner in life, because initially, many suggestions for some of the more daring colors we have used have come from that quarter, with the final decision often falling to me.

We have obviously been influenced by the art deco bathrooms we often lived with while residing in the Boston area.  These were prominent by their pink, white and black tile work.  As a result, one of the bathrooms in our vacation rental is pink, though not tile, mostly a sponge type treatment with black coming in from wrought iron accoutrement.  

Other rooms in this house are mainly shades of green and purple, with pink making a subtle reappearance in the kitchen.

This explosion in color is in part due to the fact that we had the luxury of working on a house while not living in it.  But the explosion really had its spark in our own house, which had the working moniker of "our homely abode" for many of the early years we lived in it.

One of the homeliest aspects of the house was the fake wood paneling in the living room.  I'm sure it was added at some point because somebody sometime was scared to deal with the old wallpaper covered lathe and plaster walls that lay beneath.  We were pretty happy to discover this because taking wallpaper off of lathe and plaster is pretty easy and the walls themselves are incredibly forgiving to work with.  My experiences with dry wall have not been nearly so enjoyable.

The interesting part of renovating this living room was the sense of relief we both felt when the "wood" paneling came off.  Even though the walls were a pretty awful yellow wallpaper, and yellow being a least favorite color of all time, we were so much more at peace in the space than we had ever been before.

I can imagine some new age type guru saying that the paneling was giving off some terrible cosmic vibration.  Maybe so ... weirder things have happened.  All I can say that the two colors of purple that now adorn the walls in soft venetian plaster are a joy to live with...even though, 14 years later, the trim still isn't finished.

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