Monday, December 31, 2007

Some Redecorating

Over the past twelve months, this old house has been getting a long needed face lift!

The interior hadn't been painted since 1982 because, for at least a decade, we thought we'd be moving. The house is so old and outmoded, without central air-conditioning and with only one bathroom, that developers considered the house a tear down. Once our sales contract fell through in September 2006, Mr. AOW and I decided that it was high time to stop living in a dump so bad that I don't even have many "before" photos. But I do have several "after" photos.


In December 2006, we redid the bathroom, the most hideous and the most dangerous room in the house. The floor ominously creaked every time I stepped into the bathtub, and it was only a matter of time before I ended up, tub and all, in the crawlspace!

Here's what the bathroom looks like now, complete with a window made of glass bricks and all new fixtures, including a bathtub with whirlpool jets. The walls are lavender, my favorite color:

Check out the medicine cabinet in the above photo: an authentic antique, with a black-walnut frame.

Of course, once the bathroom was so lovely, we couldn't stand looking at the dining room, despite all the beautiful antiques therein. We converted the dining room into another kind of room.


In spring 2008 I bought and moved in a Yamaha upright, thus finally having a piano room, with gray walls and white trim:

In this photo, the piano is decorated for Christmas:

The "cat table" below is made of black walnut. My father cut the tree from his father's farm and milled the wood at this own sawmill, which Dad operated on Granddad's farm. He took the wood to a cabinetmaker and had this "telephone table" custom-made for my grandmother, never mind that she hated and rarely used the phone:

This three-cornered china cabinet, complete with Grandma's Bavarian dishes, graces the northeast corner of the room:

On the east wall next to the right side of the above china cabinet is a Queen Anne's sheet-music cabinet, with bow front and beveled mirror:

Yes, the piano room is crowded. In the above photos, you can't even see the wine cabinet and the mirror from a brothel in Georgetown. But the piano sounds like a Steinway, and that's what counts!


This room got a new face just a few weeks ago. I have one "before" photo, which shows the contrast between the old color and the white primer. This is the corner by the front door and the coat closet. The door furthest to the right is the one leading to a hallway:

Below are the "after photos" of the living room. The first is the same corner as the above ugly picture:

Note the antique mahogany banister, which looks beautiful against the damask-rose accent wall going up some 50 feet:

The big mirror opposite the banister and above the fireplace captures the reflection of the accent wall:

When I'm blogging from my laptop, I sit in the corner of the love seat under the floor lamp in the background of this photo:

Every year, I string Christmas cards from the banister posts to one of the high-placed windows:

Our Christmas tree sits in the southeast corner of the living room:

Now that the living room has such beautiful walls, we'll have to get some new curtains and a new recliner!


Anonymous said...

Wow! The place looks great! I love the bathroom glass (none of ours have windows). Must be bright and cheerie in the daylight!

Anonymous said...

Now that the living room has such beautiful walls, we'll have to get some new curtains and a new recliner!

It never ends, does it? I agree with FJ . . . you've done a marvelous job, AOW. The quality of workmanship in older houses is much superior to that found in newer homes. I'd say it's a keeper, too.

Semper Fi

Anonymous said...

Very nice.....

elmers brother said...

it looks very nice...see it wasn't so hard picking out those colors

The Merry Widow said...

Great new look!
I think I see a piggy on a tree, but I'm not it on the right about half way up?


Raven said...

I LOVE IT!! I really LOVE your bathroom- that is so sweet!!! And the colors around the stairs are right up my alley too- I like natural earthy tones.

You have a piano room? Now how cool is THAT?? I wish I had known...I found a set of PIANO ornaments a few weeks ago but didn't know anyone who might want them. THEY would so go with that room.

Very nice work AOW!!

Kat said...

GORGEOUS, AOW... You have excellent taste and a discerning eye ;-)

Always On Watch said...

Thanks, all.

We've had chaos during each phase of the redecorating. But the chaos was worth the final results.

Anonymous said...

What a great job AOW. Gorgeous colours. Amazing how a good coat of paint can transform a room. Love the mahogany bannister too!

Saw your comment over at cube's about your beloved Queen Sheba.
Dear old puss is 19 now eh?
How is she faring?
How about a recent pic of the regal lady?

Always On Watch said...

We absolutely love the new look of the interior of our home. I never imagined that this old house could look so good!

I'll check my hard drive for a recent photo of Sheba. Somehow, the digital photos of her didn't come out as well as the other ones with the traditional camera.

Sheba isn't doing too well this morning. Her problem could be indigestion--she ate way too much yesterday. But at her advanced age, she could be suffering from a more serious ailment.

At least we have an excellent vet now! We changed vets a few weeks ago when our former vet wasn't practicing humane medicine. That former vet wanted to put Sheba to sleep immediately instead of treating her. Once we got the new vet, who comes to the house and thus doesn't stress our old girl, Sheba has done much better. At the least, she's had two more GOOD weeks!

EDGE said...

Wow, I need to meet a woman that has this kind of touch with decorating rooms!

Layla said...

I love the way you decorate and Christmas is my favorite season! So lovely AOW!