Friday, August 10, 2012

BWC: Living Room Planning

Scott, ever so detail oriented, reminded me that the walls of Beech Wood Cottage have wallpaper in most of the rooms, and so may be the case in the living/dining room, soon to be living/dining/library.

Now, obviously I'm not talking beautiful grasscloth, or even beautifully patterned wallpapers. These are old school vinyl wall coverings that have been painted over and over and over again. I'd like to rip it all off, down to the studs, and re-drywall the entire space, but those are the sorts of renovations people make to houses that will sell for a lot more than what they paid for them. Honestly, I don't know that we're in that situation here. 

The other choice is to repair, sand, and prime the walls, and apply a heavy, textured wallpaper like grasscloth.

I've been in love with the look and feel of grasscloth for a long time. I love how it fits so well in formal spaces, like this dining room designed by Steve Giannetti, staged by Meredith Baer.

And yet it is just as perfect in this beautiful living room of Brooke and Steve Giannetti's Santa Monica home, now the happy home of proud new owners, I'm sure!

Does anyone remember the house from the televisions series, "Brothers and Sisters"? I miss that show, not only for the beautiful cast and writing, but for the weekly drool fest over Nora Walker's Pasadena estate. Every room on the first floor is covered in grasscloth. White mouldings, natural finishes on the doors ... it's perfection. 

Even the kitchen was papered in grasscloth. Needless to say, it didn't take a lot of convincing to get me hooked on putting it in BWC, and surprisingly, nor did it take Scott long to agree. Grasscloth in Beech Wood Cottage it is. 

The intention is to add a simple but sophisticated wainscot, like pictured in the Benjamin Dhong bathroom above, and use grasscloth in the space between the wainscot and crown moulding, a 9" variety for extra va-va-va-voom!

John Jacob Zwiegelaar, South African designer and personal inspiration, created this gorgeous room using a chocolate brown grasscloth on one wall. That's a little dark for BWC, but that lantern is a must have. I was able to source this one:

It's not cheap, but it's not out of range. With some small silk shades on each of those bulbs, it'll make a wonderful dining room/library fixture. Granted, what I really wanted ...

would have been gorgeous, but it's far too big for that space. So a lantern it is. I think! One difficult thing about that planning for a new house, especially when you are given so many options to choose from, is making a lasting decision. The last thing that I want to do is redecorate this house as often as I changed CDLV.

I wish that it could look as easy as it does when Sarah Richardson does her wonderful, "Sarah's House" series on Canadian HGTV. She seems to have it all worked out, doesn't she? You know she's not all that far away from me, maybe I could write to convince her to come and give me some advice on turning a piece of coal into a sparkling karat!