Tuesday, June 14, 2011

I don't really have bad taste. I just don't know what to do.

It's hard to believe it, but we've lived in our "new" house for a year this month. This time last year, we were up to our ears in boxes and wondering how Nate would handle the transition. This year, we can hardly remember what it felt like to live in the old place. This house is just home.

Home, though, with two wholly-undecorated and nearly empty rooms. And while it's nice to have so much space in this house that we're not packed to the gills, one of the rooms in question is, unfortunately, the front entryway.* That's right, the first thing everyone sees upon entering our house is an embarrassing assortment of three unrelated furniture pieces that don't even look like they belong in the entryway.

Glass-and-iron console table from David's bachelor days. Round side table from my grandparents' house. Black pull-down desk from my parents. This shot is taken from the doorway.

The bones of the entryway are gorgeous. It has big windows and plantation shutters and lovely wainscoting. I love the light fixture. I love the floor. So that's all really good.

The previous owners had a bench at that back wall, which might be a good idea for us.

The previous owners have a very traditional decorating style, and they had a bench, an antique standing desk, and a big dresser-as-console-table in the entry, plus one other piece I can't remember. It's a big enough space that it really does need several items, but they all have to make sense just being up against the walls, so as not to block the pathway.

They also had very distinctive red Asian-themed toile wallpaper above the wainscoting. I love it, but concede that it doesn't coordinate with our style at all. David hates it with the firey passion of a thousand suns.

Taken from the opening that leads to the dining room. We MUST get a rug in here, because it is currently an echo chamber. Oh, how I hate the mod glass table and red lamp in this space.

So here's what we need to do: We need to rip out the wallpaper and paint the top half of the walls. We need to find some sort of rug that will work in a long-ish, heavily-trafficked space. And we need to figure out what sort of furniture to put in there.

That opening to the right of the front door is a French door that also goes into the dining room. I think this entryway used to be a porch, and that was the door that led into the house.

Any suggestions? I'm kind of at a loss.

*We lovingly refer to the other empty room as "the red room," for two reasons. First (and most obviously), it's painted red. But second, we don't really know how to classify it. It used to be the dining room, before the previous owners added an addition to the back of the house. After the addition, they started using what had once been the living room as their formal dining room, and they turned the much smaller former dining room into a little sitting room, with a loveseat and a couple of chairs. For now, it's Miriel's yoga studio.


Maureen said...

I LOVE the wallpaper. LOVE it. That's all.

claire said...

Oh my gosh your house is gorgeous! I'm with Maureen. I'm not usually a big fan of wallpaper, but this is classic. And tearing down wallpaper is not a fun job. If I were you I would cling to any excuse to avoid it!

Celeste said...

I love toile and it probably is a nice segue to the red room. But for David's sake I'd take down the wallpaper and paint a warm tan that works with the floor. However I'd put the red back in via the rug. I think the bench idea is wonderful; it can function as a place for guests to set down their belongings during a visit, whether it's purses, diaper bags, or other items.

Branwen said...

No decorating advice other than that I just read that you can paint over wall paper with no ill effect. (It is gorgeous though!)