10.26.2017

One Room Challenge Fall 2017 - WK 4

Hello folks!  It’s week four of The One Room Challenge™ - and I’m happy to report that we officially have paint on the walls.  I can assure you this is a first in the history of all chez V ORCs. Woop!

And speaking of firsts, for the first time  EVER, The One Room Challenge team has decided to extend final reveal day by a week to accommodate delays due to the natural disasters leading up to the ORC.  Many designers are experiencing shipment delays, supply shortages, and backlogs of scheduled trade work. Can I get a collective Vicki Gunvalson woo hoo-like woop? I am overjoyed to have an additional week as I was just lamenting last week about not enough time or moola.

Speaking of which, to get caught up on my first 3 weeks, you can click on the links below:


WK1 | WK 2 | WK 3 | WK 4 | WK 5 | WK 6

As for progress, here goes:

My daughter’s room finally got emptied.  All contents are spread hither and yon within our house and we have yet to successfully locate a clean school jumper once this week.  Ceiling fan has been removed and relegated to the trash heap, much to my mister’s dismay. What is it with men and ceiling fans??

As implied last week, the original pink choice was kicked to the curb in favor of Farrow and Ball’s Peignoir.  What can I say? The Dervish got her purple after all. Well, here’s what I can say – Peignoir is decidedly more pigmented and sophisticated than the pink.  After staring at swatches on the wall for about a week, we all kept coming back to Peignoir.  So purple it is.  But for the record, I am referring to it as ‘lilac.’





It's been gray and rainy for days, so the lighting is dark but you get the general idea.  During the day the color hovers closer to lilac and in the evening leans toward a pinkish gray - which, surprisingly, is what I was going for.  A fleshy, pigmented pink rather than pepto pink or uncooked hot dog.

Here is a crappy cellphone daylight image.  The walls here are more pinkish:






Regardless, I am officially in love with the color and immediately started pulling items into the room – the desk, painted a minty color, and the desk lamp, both purchased at Home Goods.  Next, I shopped my house looking for accessories – a small oil painting of a mother and daughter that my mother gave to me for my first apartment which is now absolutely perfect in this room; a small pair of purple tinted Staffordshire pups from my collection, again surprisingly perfect here, and one of my favorite vintage chinoiserie plates, the colors of which just sing against the walls.  It’s quite possible the girl might have a plate or two on the wall.  I cannot fight my granny chic ways.






This week I also started pulling apart the desk chair in preparation for upholstery as well as pulling together the supplies for the relaxed roman shades.  Will go on record here to say that I am officially nervous about tackling the shades so the extra week has me all shades of happy for some added breathing room.



As of today, here's where we stand:





Feeling mucho better about things with the extra week, although I am still targeting photography for the 6th.  Best laid plans of mice and a silly decorating lady.  Once I finish the trim paint this week, I will actually bring in the rug and the new bed.  Desk chair and roman shade are slated for this weekend but I also have to whip up a unicorn costume from thin air and dust bunnies.  So wish me luck.

Excited to catch up with the 20 designers this week to see how that extra week of reprieve is playing out as well as my fellow guest participants.  You should check them out too!



Thanks to Linda for saving our collective arses with the Hail Mary and thanks to media sponsor House Beautiful!

10.19.2017

One Room Challenge Fall 2017 - WK 3


“I’ve never been a millionaire 
but I just know I’d be darling at it.”

Dorothy Parker

You know what else I’d be just darling at?  Not being smug. How silly of me to brag last week about being ahead of schedule. Well, Reality, that prickly priss, has expertly aimed her fist at my face.  In other words, I woke up today and realized it’s week three of The One Room Challenge™ - the dreaded mid-point where all delusions of special projects and preparedness wither and die.  It’s a lot like having a dream about showing up to school with no clothes on and realizing that you have a chemistry test for which you did not prepare. Please tell me this happens to you too. 

Well, let’s get right to it.  If you are just tuning in, I am participating as a guest participant in the The One Room Challenge™ hosted by Calling It Home and media partner House Beautiful.  If you have missed any of the action you can click on the links below:


WK1 | WK 2 | WK 3 | WK 4 | WK 5 | WK 6


Last week I was confidently channeling Dorothy Draper with all the chutzpah of a newly minted bourgeoise.  This week I’m all razor tongued and sharply sad like Ms. Parker, lamenting whether I can afford  lunch at the Algonquin.  This is due in large part to the realization that my timeline for the ORC is as short as my wallet is deep.  It is that age old conflict of man v. himself, or in my case, Emily v. herself. Or Dorothy v. Dorothy. Wait, what the hell are you even talking about, Emily?

Glad you asked. To put it plainly, my tastes outpace my means in this time frame. Common lamentations. The source of my conflict, while simple to comprehend on the surface,   is not a simple case of wanting luxury for luxury sake. Rather, having grown up among artisans and design-minded people, I have a deep appreciation for craftmanship and bespoke detailing. I admire the subtle, yet genius strokes that immediately convey a sense of place, and a personal way of living.  These things take time and money – both of which are in short supply here.  So the challenge becomes - how to bring those bespoke, designer touches into a tight, budget-driven timeline without risking things veering off into an episode of DIY Gone Wild?

Design should be as simple as an extension of the way one hopes to live. And given enough time, one can generally find solutions.  However, in 6 weeks, you are absolutely forced to make sacrifices – especially if one hasn’t prepared in advance and we all know I don’t prepare - for propriety sake.  As in, ‘I proclaimed I’d finish the damn room and so I will.’

So it's all 'pull up my big girl panties and get on it with it' vibes over here.  I'll get there - I usually do - but not without some bellyaching first.

As a reminder, here is the initial plan:




No paint on the walls as of yet.  The barely there Sherwin Williams  pink in the plan above that I was so sure of which was color-matched to the Rhododendron fabric, has been outvoted in favor of a Farrow and Ball color that is decidedly more pigmented and purple.  The horror – I can’t even.  I have to concede that in situ the pink does not have the depth I’m going after.



The pink ikat fabric I ordered for a custom shade and pillow arrived as black fabric, with a handwritten tag identifying it as ‘pink.’ Seriously?  After scrambling to finally get the actual fabric I ordered, I may not get the custom work back in time for the reveal.

Still trying to source a cozy, affordable reading chair.  I am holding out for a serendipitous high-end consignment find or floor model.  I paid a fortune for my daughter’s modern glider, and while it has held up frame wise, the upholstery is totally wrecked after 9 yrs.  No time for  a custom slipcover.  Sacrifices.  Same goes for a nightstand.  Total crap options out there that are budget-friendly.

In news that resembles something close to hope and progress, I have painted the desk ( and by me, I mean the Dervish with heavy art direction from her father ) sourced at Home Goods for a song.





For the desk chair which I found at a local consignment shop (and purchased for a literal fraction of the new one I sourced online) I purchased the herringbone fabric to reupholster it from the Fabric Shack, my local fabric source for many projects




Also working on what I am hoping is a cool Draper-esque overhead light fixture.  Cross your fingers that electrical combustion does not ensue.  Arrived:  headboard, lamp, mirror, rug, accent pillow.




Still up for consideration is the closet storage solution which is coming dangerously close to reaching reno territory as the closet door openings in this ding dong ranchburger are non-standard size which means we have to rip down standard doors or cut into walls…so much for no reno.

Let's revisit the bedroom checklist to check progress:


In my mind, I had accomplished much more but I think that's a function of scrambling around like a chicken.

Left to do - quite a punch list but one that I think is still manageable:





Lots left to do with little time.  Cross all of your digits for me - when the mister starts to sew and upholster things get sporty - as in me hovering over spendy fabric and him telling me to chill the *eff* out.  Yes, he does the sewing - benefits of a custom car hobby.  


I am hoping that rather than lamentations, we have struck on a few creative solutions that will deliver the high-end bespoke Dorothy Draper look that I am after on my Dorothy Parker budget.  I have splurged where I thought it most impactful and found incredible deals that require a bit of elbow grease.   In exchange for willingly helping me through another ORC, the mister has made me swear on all things holy and dear that I will stick to a damn budget.  Ok, fine, fine.  But let's be clear:  I'd still be just darling as a millionaire too.

Looking forward to catching up with you next week as well as checking in on the progress of the 20 featured designers as well as the rest of my fellow guest participants!

10.12.2017

One Room Challenge Fall 2017 - WK 2



Welcome back to chez V for week two of The One Room Challenge™ as a guest participant.  Not only has my marriage survived week one, I have also made some  progress this week – which is major for me.  Normally I am sanding something for 5 weeks before I have any shred of progress, lick of paint, or purchases to discuss. #procrastinator.  First things first, thanks go out to Linda at Calling It Home for all the work that goes into ensuring things are seamless every week.  And a big thank you to House Beautiful for sponsoring this amazing biannual event. 





In week one I covered the basics - the room, the plan, the precocious client, and my general inspiration. If you missed it, shame on you. Luckily you can click the link above to catch up. This week I will go into more detail about my overall process for a project and my progress for this room.
I should start by saying that I am not a decorator.  I have no formal training in interior design so the way I approach the design of a room likely flies in the face of conventional design wisdom.




Like Dorothy, I am an autodidact when it comes to decorating.  Having been raised by a house-proud mom and surrounded by beautiful things, my education started early.  My most treasured childhood toy was my wooden dollhouse!  Hours upon hours I spent redecorating that thing and envisioning the fabulous life my little dolls lived as a result.  By the age of five, I was a full-fledged devotee. As I got older I started reading my mother’s design, art and architecture books along with magazines as I lived through her decorating whims. To this day, I consume them voraciously in a continued effort to train my eye, find inspiration, and hone my distinctive style





I decorate instinctively.  I do not begin with a floor plan and then execute.  Instead, I begin with a feeling or an emotion.  An interesting piece or a dynamic color or pattern is often the touchstone for an entire room. Mixing color, pattern, and statement pieces, both high and low, are signatures of my style.  Minimalism is a dirty word in my house. I must confess that I don’t measure. The horror!  My eye can usually discern balance and scale.




With a vibe or piece as a starting point, my process begins with a visual board to give me a sense for the major elements and the color story.  In this case, it was the Carlton Varney Rhododendron fabric which was used to great effect in The Greenbrier – I have had it for a number of years having bought a bolt of it out of the Ficks Reed warehouse.




The elements on the visual board themselves may or may not be the final pieces but serve to give me inspiration so that when I am in shops, touching and feeling, I can make quick decisions as to whether a piece or pattern will work or not.  From there, I make a punch list and off I go.  Along the way, things are often tweaked but in general my first instinct about the overall feel of the space is pretty spot on.



As I mentioned earlier, lots of progress to report this week.  By that I mean I really just maxed my credit card.  Happy to report my room looks exactly the same as it did last week.  Wait, say what? In my book this is a great thing because usually my ORC spaces resemble a scene from Dexter at this point.  Praise all that is holy for no reno.  Although come to think of it, a 5’ and change shorty on a janky ladder trying to hang crown molding dripping with liquid nails might get sporty as was evidenced in my bathroom install. Cue the cursing and booze. You’d think the mister would account for my shortness and give me the taller ladder. Rude.  This time I might accidentally brad his right butt cheek to the wall.

With my vision board in hand, I hit the pavement this week, scouring many local places.  Totally counts as exercise too, according to my Fitbit. Nothing replaces seeing and touching things in person. I hit up my usual online haunts as well and sourced some of the foundation items on my checklist – I feel so totally out of sync.  I made major purchase decisions in week two.  

What will happen next?!  I might make actual dinner for my family in the next 5 weeks.




Let's not get carried away.






PURCHASED - headboard, bed frame, desk lamp, desk, desk chair, mirror, rug, more fabric. 

EARMARKED - reading chair, nightstand, sconce, sheets, overhead lighting, art, custom work.

TBD - bedskirt, duvet, closet storage, book storage, bedside lamp

Progress, people!
Come back next week, please! I might actually have moved something out of the room. I will cover a few of the projects we have in the works.  It is not a real Housewives of chez V ORC without some actual rehab theatrics or grandiose DIY gone wrong.  Like when Dorinda tries to speak or the Countess tries to walk after 50 cocktails.

Oh hey, are you following me yet on Instagram?  What’s taking you so long? Don't be scaredI will be sharing all my juicy Kardashian booty behind-the-scenes stuff on Stories that won’t get covered here. Kim tells me selfies are soooo last year and that Stories/Snap is where it’s at. So that’s where I’ll be.  I totally get my real news from her and the housewives so it must be true.

Also, while I am badgering, would love to hear from you all.  You can leave me a comment at the bottom of my posts.  I respond directly to all comments as long as you aren’t a ‘No Reply’ weirdo.  Just kidding/not kidding about the weirdo part.  So leave me words and we can chat.  

As always, be sure to check out the 20 featured designers – there is some serious goodness happening. And be sure to check in on my fellow guest participants – over 200!

Layouts by Emily Vanderputten; Picture sources: 2 | 3