Design should do the same thing in everyday life that art does when encountered: amaze us, scare us or delight us, but certainly open us to new worlds within our daily existence.
Aaron Betsky, Curator of Architecture, Design and Digital Projects, SFMOMA
While cleaning out the storage shed I came across an old box full of vintage pleated drapes in various patterns and colors. Hmmm, too floral and funky to be Pottery Barn, so back on the shelf they went as I thought I might use the fabric for some art project in the future. Little did I know that one particular pattern and color scheme would become a huge part of the design for the farmhouse living room...
One major budget buster was the need to replace the sad sagging 70's sofa and side chairs. Handy Hubby and I went sofa shopping and came home with an empty truck, no luck. Small room, even smaller budget, and specific seating needs limited our choices. Not wanting to sacrifice style I decided it was OK to watch TV across our knee caps a little longer, I mean we could just rest our chin on them right? I exaggerate, it really was not that bad, but, I really did want to replace the furniture that bad!
The decorating course was set when I received a " hand-me-up ". Most of the time people receive " hand-me-downs ", the older generation handing down to the younger, in my case it was in the reverse, the younger handing something up to me...a sofa!
Long story short, it was the great sofa switch: Darling Daughter got married and bought new sofa, Daughter-in-law adored Darling Daughters vintage sofa and was gifted with it, Daughter-in-law was about to call donation place to pick up Todd Oldham sofa but then thought of me. Score! My first " hand-me-up "! Free! Even though it is more modern in style that I personally prefer the warm honey tone is very neutral and would work well with what I had in mind.
Fast forward a few days and Handy Hubby and I are browsing an estate sale. Deep in the recesses of the twisting house (very bizarre lay out) I spy a small sofa that is almost the same honey tone of the " hand-me-up " and it has the same lines. A pregnant lady was giving it a test and seemed very taken with it and I was wishing we had gotten there sooner. The next morning I woke up still thinking about that sofa and convinced Handy Hubby to just go back and see if it was still there, it was the last day of the sale and I knew it would be discounted.
Another score! The sofa was still there, deeply discounted, and here is the best part...we needed a hide-a-bed for extra sleeping in the two bedroom farm house...I lifted up the cushion to inspect the sofa...and it was a hide-a-bed!!! This sofa still had the tags on it, dated 1982, and was NEVER USED! We got it for $105.00. We found out from one of the estate heirs that the lady who lived there was an heir of John Deere. She had one of the best collections of original art works I had ever seen, wish and I could have scored some of those but the discount was not nearly as deep.
Now that the sofas are settled we need two side chairs, still looking for those. I turned my thoughts to window coverings. I always seem to need a tactile inspiration piece to jump start a room decor and two honey toned sofas were not it. A little buzzing in the back of my brain kept my thoughts returning to that box of drapes, maybe, just maybe...so I dug them back out. Yes, the buzzing was correct, in two funky floral pair there is that same honey tone as the sofas, along with Fresh Apple Green...Spent Poppy... Wildflower Yellow...Farm Fresh Egg... Rusty Objects...Dusky Pine Cone...Fallen Leaf... Silver Leaf Maple... Summer Daisy... Mottled Native Stone...Fuzzy Weed... Golden Hay...Chocolate Weed...Dark Shady Green...Dandelion Wishes...Twisted Vine...And Whisper White...(Hey, I think I just invented my own paint chip line!)
Yes, a funny thing did happen on the way to the farm, or, to decorating it at least...that 1970's style and color palette is getting a new twist. Handy Hubby said the drapes look too old school but I have asked him to trust me to make them fresh modern cool. I have begun the remake on them by giving them a good laundering and removing the pleats, more to come on these after I get all the sewing done. I have pulled two colors from them for paint colors in the room, Farm Fresh Egg (a creamy off white color) and Summer Daisy (a crisp true white). I may not end up with Pottery Barn style but I am amazed, delighted, and even a little afraid of the color palette all of which are opening up a new world of possibilities.
I would love to hear what you are up to and
I hope you all enjoy a bliss filled weekend!