It’s been a bit of a journey, and things have yet to be completely organized or unpacked, but we have moved completely into our new rental. It was a little sad saying goodbye to the little cabin in the woods, but at the same time it’s very nice being close to everything in town. I’m not sure if I mentioned before, but our last house was fairly updated and contemporary, there wasn’t really much character other than the location and the general chalet design. That’s not a bad thing, it’s great for bringing your own flair into a space to make it your own. This house, on the other hand, was built in 1928 and like most craftsman houses, it definitely has character.
The first things that we did were take out the carpet and paint the main bedroom in the house. We wanted to make sure that we were ready to move straight in and use that room even if the others took a minute to get together. From there I gradually painted the living room (because it’s not easy to paint with a toddler who really, REALLY, wants to help.) For me, putting up my artwork in a house really helps me feel settled. So I want to do it as soon as possible.
I really do think that the lighter paint color helped the living room out as far as the way it felt. Don’t get me wrong, I have actually purposefully had a chocolate brown living room at one point in my life and have nothing against it. I just felt like a house near the sea needs to feel light, not heavy. Also, please forgive the cords around the television. We put it up above the fireplace because the little one was way too fond of touching the screen when she wanted to watch something and the husband got tired of all the smudges. I’m still trying to figure out a way to hide those better. One thing I did this time around that I have not done before, because I’ve always been on the fence about the trend, is I created a small gallery wall. I have a lot of smaller pieces of art that I have picked up over the years or that friends have sent me, or that I myself made. I wanted a way to showcase them without filling every tiny nook with artwork. I did learn that 90+ year old houses throw curve balls at you though, so my spacing isn’t exactly as I planned because there were some places that I literally could not drive a nail into the wall. So I had to roll with it and make adjustments. Overall I like it though.
Another thing I was super excited to fit into our living room was my Ikea hacked bookshelves. We made them back in Oklahoma and it took lots of explaining and re-explaining what I wanted to be done in order for them to be put together. Unfortunately, I don’t think Ikea makes the shelves that I used anymore. It’s like their Hyllis shelf but taller. I designed them to fit around our stereo speakers and to hold the stereo equipment and other junk. They fit perfectly in the last house by some small bit of magic, and while they aren’t a completely perfect fit here thanks to a wall register, they’re pretty close.
It was like a weeks long discussion about what we would do with the shelves if they didn’t fit and it kept being suggested that we just cut the wood shelving parts down, but I didn’t think I could bring myself to do it. When I say a lot of effort went into making these I mean it. There are notches on the front and back sides of the board that fit the side bars perfectly so that the whole unit ends up being super sturdy feeling instead of flimsy like the individual cabinets are. All of the boards with the exception of the top board are so precisely measured and cut that they are a super pain in the ass to take out or put back in. If you’re ever wanting to build something, I highly suggest you find that one friend that we all seem to have who takes what feels like decades to finish one project because they want it to be juuuuuust right. David has always been that person in my life and I will be forever grateful for how many times I had to explain to him what I wanted this shelf to be like and how he made it happen. If I had asked my husband to make it according to my specifications I don’t think I would still be alive.
So there you have it folx, this is how my living room has come along and what it looks like when it’s not covered in puzzle pieces, popsicle sticks, and various sizes of legos. Don’t think that this is real life. These photos were taken while my child was in the middle of her nap, and after these photos were taken I had to take the couch cushion covers off because someone had gotten crayon on them. Thank god for Crayola realizing that absolutely every product that make for children must be washable or parents would never purchase it.