Monday, May 24, 2010


(Interior door - painted this green this morning)

Today I am taking an entrance exam. This is not your typical exam where you pen the answers to questions on paper, this is more of a hands on decorating exam. I am literally examining the entrance to my home. Now that it is empty of Handy Hubby's mini office I need to rethink the space.(Area where Handy Hubby's desk used to be)

Now, while I would adore having an entry that is a fully functional foofed first impression kind of space, I have to carefully consider the tiny footprint of this small home and it seems it is always function over form.

The newest issue is a growing family of tiny tots who love to come to Hannah's house to play. Tiny tots come with stuff and need stuff to play with. Their stuff needs a place to be stored in between visits, so, while not the ideal area, half the entry will now house a special space for the sweet grands things. The other half will be a seating area for putting on shoes or curling up with a book.(Playing with the setup of the childrens corner)

I like that this space is adjacent to the living room and we can see them. There is a lot of natural light so it is a bright space. They can play, have snacks, do art projects, or watch the birds at the feeders. There is not a lot of floor space but that is not the issue, they can play in the living room, the issue is the storage of stuff for them play with.

I am on a tight budget so I spent the afternoon yesterday shopping my storage building and unearthed a little doll bed that was handmade by my paternal grandfather...An old bookcase...An old brass lamp...
A vintage suitcase stand...An old picture frame given to me by my friend, Pam...And a wicker suitcase...From the linen closest I snagged the rugs that were in my old studio space...From the woods I brought up the old iron bed bench...My mother recently gave me my old table and chairs from my childhood...In order to get a good grade on my entrance exam I need to combine all this stuff into room decor. I spent this morning cleaning the room from ceiling to floor and painting the inside of the door. I am now ready to move on to the fun stuff. My plan is to give the table and chairs and doll bed a face lift with a coat of gel stain and sealer. The bookcase I am just going to clean and oil.

The bench will get a fresh coat of black paint and a new fabric covered seat. The rugs will get a dye bath to make them a deeper green. I'll use the suitcase under the bench for extra storage for bulky toys. The suitcase stand will get a coat of paint, I think it will be black too. The frame will be cleaned and sealed, I'll add a piece of wood to fit the frame and give it a decorative treatment to turn it into a table top to rest on the suitcase stand in front of the bench.

I am a little iffy about using the suitcase stand and frame for a table, I also have the option of a small handmade trunk that I could install a safety hinge on to add more toy storage. I'll wait and see if I need or not. I do like the idea that the table is easily removed and folds up to move out of the way for play.

After all that, all I have to do is gather up the toys and group them on the shelves. I might purchase baskets to fit the shelves and have the toys a bit hidden. I won't be using any cutesy colors or go crazy with a childlike theme. My plan is to blend the child friendly elements into an adult decor. I think it is important that every family member feel valued and cherished. I don't want this space to scream so much that children frequent here but more importantly that children are loved here.

What might you ask prompted this self imposed exam? I agreed to host a party here this coming Saturday so I am in a cleaning, decorating, fooffing up frenzy. I hope to get the entry and two other rooms freshly foofed by Friday. I have four days for crazy decorating projects and one day for yard work with a half day left for setting up the party. Break time is over, it is back to my entrance exam, wish me luck!

Hope you are in the midst of happy plans too!

Miss Sandy


Bonita said...

That is a beautiful entrance! I love all the wood and the natural light. I can't wait to see how it all turns out. I also really like your idea of keeping it in theme with the adult look of the house as opposed to looking like Toys R Us. This is grandma's house, not their own playroom at home. Great ideas!

Vee said...

This is going to be so nice for the grands to have their own space. You found some great items while shopping your own home so I look forward to seeing it all pulled together. (I dared not use my childhood table because of its sharp edges, much sharper than yours. Still you may want to have handy hubby knock those corners back a bit or maybe you're perfectly capable. I think you are. I'm not.)

Myrnie said...

Only YOU could have such adorable treasures hidden away, waiting for the perfect us :) Your grandchildren will love it!

Lady Farmer said...

Miss Sandy ~
I am sure you will *pass* with flying colors! Your entrance is so lovely and spacious and the perfect place for the storing children's things and for playing! You couldn't have gotten sweeter furniture pieces if you went shopping for them in a store! I think your grands will feel very special to have their own space.
And you even have space for adults, too!

Lorrie said...

What a beautiful entrance hall. The wood is so warm and welcoming. Your grands will be so thrilled with their very own corner!

Laura said...

Good Morning, Miss Sandy,
I am so looking forward to seeing the end results...I just love your ideas and the space that you have to create in! Thanks so much for've sparked some ideas in me!

Anonymous said...

Sandy, this seems to be your year to move from room-to-room and re-purpose them. Funny how that happens! Even here in our little house some of our rooms have had re-births for other occupants, etc.
Lots of work but fun too! Can't wait to see how you pull all of this together!

Flower said...

Looks like it will be a fun week!

Shopgirl said...

This is perfect, what wonderful treasures you have to share...this is going to be the best!!!hugs, Mary

Linda said...

It's so charming and beautiful.

We don't have an entry like that - our entry is a 4' x 4' tile square that immediately steps into the dining room. :)

Decor To Adore said...

Oh I am looking for my "shrink me" button so that I can play too.

LiLi M. said...

Hello Miss Sandy, I'm finally back after an extended blog break. Hope you are doing well again. Love everything in your entrance. I love the way you recycle things. I think you will pass your exam 'cum laude'. (You will probably know by now as it is Saturday.) Wishing you a lovely weekend with your family!

Lisa said...

I think you'll pass the exam with flying colors. If you want another challenge, check out my blog. I thought of you with this one. I can't wait to see the reveal. I love your attitude about everyone feeling special & cherished. My in-laws have a hidden room under their stairs that they painted really bright & have stocked with dress up clothes & a little reading nook. The Grand kids love it, it's 'their' room. I think many memories are being made there. Happy Wednesday! Lisa

Martha, Vintage Trifles said...

I look forward to seeing the finished product! Sometimes our best ideas come out of using what we have. Creativity as its best! Have fun! M.

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