“Instructions for living a life: Pay attention. Be astonished. Tell about it.” ― Mary Oliver
Once our main floor remodel project wrapped up in April, I took about a month off from house projects and resumed life as normal. A life that didn’t involve looking at samples, poring over shelter magazines, or generally considering my home as a work in progress!
But… just as a bird must feather its nest, so must I continue to finish what I started with our remodel. I retained our architect, Christine Albertsson from Albertsson Hansen, to help with an interior design project for our main floor. It just made sense, because she and I had already developed a rapport and I felt like she understood how we live and our tastes. I also liked that she would charge us a flat fee rather than taking a cut of what we ordered from manufacturers (which is how most interior design professionals work). This way, if she orders things and gets a trade discount she passes it on to us. We also benefit in that there’s no disincentive for her if I want to look at furniture or accessories “off the rack” rather than custom ordered pieces.
I’m pleased to report that about a month into the project we’ve already made some selections and are narrowing in on a few others. The first one to go in was our rug to pull together the back section of the great room:
Color is a natural linen, herringbone textured pattern in parquet set up. Seating area at right stays as is, dining table and chairs being replaced, you can see some ideas we had on my Pinterest board that Christine and I have been using for the project.
The genius of this is it is from FLOR — ultra-durable, nylon, and easy to replace individual tiles if any incidents with my kiddos should occur! I initially wanted a sisal rug for this area, but was way too concerned about wear given it is a natural fiber and not easily cleaned. My sister suggested FLOR because she’s used it in her house and it is a very modern and clean look.
We also chose and ordered the shades for the family room windows. We decided to hang fabric panels for the window treatments layered over inside-mounted roller shades in a natural fiber. Our backyard is very private, but we needed the shades to block glare on the TV in the family room and to help shade the room in the late afternoon, as it can get a lot of sun. We haven’t installed ours yet, but it looks like this:
The big decisions now are the fabrics for the window treatments — there are so many directions you can take it:
I started taping some samples up to see how they’d fit into the space and work with the wall color, light fixture, floor, and rug, as well as the furniture that I am keeping. At left is a very cool and large-scale print called Teablossoms by Kravet, here’s a close-up:
At right is another botanical print called Poppyfield by Thom Filicia for Kravet:
I also looked at a stripe from Barbara Barry that is definitely “safer” but very elegant (pictured at right in my first pic of this post). I think all three could work, but it somewhat depends on other choices that I haven’t made yet, like the dummy roman shades we’re getting made for the kitchen windows:
At left is a bold graphic pattern from Marimekko, works great with the light fixtures, right? And at right is a more geometric pattern in a blue that bridges the lights and the gray wall color. If I go with the bolder print in the family room then I would choose the geometric or another more subdued pattern in the kitchen. Whereas if I went with a less busy print in the family room I could do the Marimekko in the kitchen.
I also must reserve final judgement until we evaluate new sofas and the rug for the TV sitting area, since these things will all need to work together and I’m wary of making the space too visually cluttered, but want to avoid the equally dangerous snoozefest if I keep it too neutral! What do you think? Any favorite patterns that jumped out at you?