Sunday, 13 July 2014

More living room than drawing room

Hi Guys
I hope your week has been ok and you've managed to find some time on your mini projects.

I don't have a great deal to show this time but wanted to keep you up to speed with my progress, rather than show a finished room I thought I'd show it, "warts and all", with the hope of getting some feedback and suggestions along the way.

I was sure I had taken more pictures, but never mind, I hope you understand where I'm going with this.


Please remember, this is very early days. I want this room to have a relaxed feel to it, more living room than drawing room. The sort of room you could sit with a book and a cup of tea (or brandy!) or with friends for cocktails.  I am going to use a mixture of old and modern style paintings to add to the "built up over time" look. The sofa will have lots of green scatter cushions and a large pale green velvet ottoman on the rug with books and magazines on it. Of course there are drapes to add and the ceiling to work out. I raised the ceiling slightly higher than the moulding so I could add plaster work or rustic beams. Not sure yet.

I wanted something different to the usual cream colours I go for and loved the greens in Farrow & Ball going for Lichen on all the walls and Calke Green on the side walls between the pillars to add a bit more depth to a room that is not that deep. The pillars were ones I had kicking around (a little chipped on the edges) and I prettied them up with some jewellery findings (that I'm using on the exterior too), painted in green with some gold paint rubbed on for highlights. My top tip for getting perfectly straight and true right angled wall panels is to stick on a piece of card or balsa that has been pre-cut to the size of the panel you want, then after it has been painted to match the wall (or covered in wallpaper) glue on the gold detail around it. I am probably the last person to work this out and you are probably doing this already but I only worked it out this week and am really happy with how it looks. The gold detail helps to define the walls better, giving more interest, and accentuates the curved walls either side of the fireplace.

The fireplace - there's another trauma! My original idea was to paint it the darker of two greens with gold details (see pic below) but opted for the plain cream colour as it really lightens the feel of the room. I like the green but it's too much green in the room, at this stage at least, what do you think?



Added after this was published - I still need to wash the cream fire surround in burnt umber and paint the fire-back bricks with a smokey finish - thanks Gee, I forgot to say this before x




The fireplaces I'm using we're ones I bought for my theatre project (to be used as the box surrounds) but I thought I'd pinch some for my house instead - I'm still trying to keep all costs to a minimum believe it or not!

Work on the outside progresses slowly and I have added the moulding round the top outer edges. it's the same as that used on the base platform but the other way up. I thought it would help time the two together.  Here it is painted in the base coat colour along with some more bits of Sue Cook that I had in a drawer and seem to work alright.


And here with some jewellery findings added and some weathering...


I am still unsure about the roof - it will be sloping but I'm not sure of the finer details with the dome feature. I think it might look a little odd so I'm currently going with raising the curved part of the wall up and rounding it at the top in a faded copper finish. Who knows?! I have also been playing with making a window for the front of the roof using bits of moulding and an oval picture frame. I'm still not sure but it's getting better the more I fiddle with it, I think you get the general idea…



Well, I better carry on I guess. Hope you have liked what you've seen so far - and managed to keep up with my ramblings as always?!

Have a great week ahead All.

Si

31 comments:

  1. Hi Si, The exterior looks great! That picture frame for a window is a very good solution, but in this colormix it is hard to tell how it will look like, I am not sure about the acanthus leaves but maybe it works great.

    The green on the inside is a lovely color, easy to the eyes and yet very chic.
    The painting behind the couch pops out for me, absolutely love it!
    The carpet, floor, walls go together so well.
    But there is something about that fireplace area. Maybe it is the wallpapaer behind it, or maybe you could try giving it some shading, now it is so light in comparance to the rest. Or maybe it is just the picture, can't tell from here.
    I would try another back - just a colored piece of cardboard- and play with that, see if that looks any better.
    But you do as you like, it is your beautiful house :)
    Hugs,
    Gee

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    1. Hi Gee
      Thanks as always, you're right about the acanthus leaves, they're too much lol
      I still need to darken the bricks in the fireplace and give the cream fire surround a wash of burnt umber to tone it down a little.
      I'm please you like it though, that window needs a lot more thinking ;-)
      Hugs
      Si

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    2. I like it a LOT. And I forgot to compliment you on the mirrors, beautiful.
      Have been looking at that window again and again, maybe it's not the acanthus but the overall feeling is it is too much, you are right. Thinking out loud here.
      Probably someone else can point it out in a better way.
      I like your experimenting and combining, please don't say ''you're right'' automatically, it is a learning proces to me when you defend your choices; and I mean that in the nicest way possible, not as a comment :)
      Hugggggs,
      Gee

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    3. Ha ha, you were right honey ;-) but I know what you mean. It really is trial and a lot of error. I really appreciate and value your comments though. For instance, I had totally missed mentioning I needed to weather the surround - where would I be without you ? ;-)
      Hugggggs back...
      X

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    4. I know.... Hahahahhahaaaaaaaa ;) sorry for the blog pollution

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  2. Hi Simon! You have been busy! I LOVE the oval window details!!! And the cream fireplace surround is definitely better...It is more likely they would have built the house with cream marble than a green one! As for the future ottoman.... it sounds divine! I really love the greens you have chosen.... they are rich and "smokey" and really atmospheric! Oh, and I think a plaster ceiling detail would be gorgeous! It is really looking beautiful!
    And the exterior is coming right along! Whenever I have trouble envisioning a construction design, I do a "mock up" in paper or very light card... easy to cut and re-cut and tape together just to get a clearer sense of shape and proportion! at least it helps me to see the ideas better. I think your Mansard roof will be wonderful... maybe the front "dome" needs to be a little bit like a turret... a little higher than the rest of the roof? I can't wait to see what you come up with... I am sure it will be breath-taking!

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    1. Hey Betsy, great idea re mocking up with paper etc. I'll give that a try for sure. And I liking the turrets idea.
      Thanks for the tips x

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  3. Hi Si! I like the room with what you have in mind so far, old mixed with the modern style. But personally I don't like the striking green color at the wall above the fireplace. (I am sorry to tell you this, but you asked for it ;o) I think it is not well balanced with the rest of the room. It is just that my English is too bad for explaining myself in a better way, so I do hope you understand what I mean with it. I don't want to offend you, Si, certainly NOT. The exterior is fabulous, now I can't wait to see what you will show us for the roof. That picture frame as a window is a great finding and I do agree with Gee for the acanthus leaves ;)!
    Have a nice Sunday and week!
    Hugs, Ilona

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    1. Bless you, Ilona, I completely understand what you mean. The green wallpaper is too bright at the moment but I am going to put paneling around it and then put a picture in the middle so most of it will disappear and I'm thinking of putting a couple of dark green cushions on the sofa to pull the colour into the room. Fingers crossed it will all come together - it makes sense in my head !! ;-)
      Hugs
      Si

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  4. I LOVE it all Simon. I know your work well enough to know that you will tie it all together and it will be gorgeous. On the way, if something doesn't fit you will change it.
    I adore those French oval windows. This one is going to be fantastic.

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    1. Thanks Catherine. That's so lovely of you. It is very early days for this room but at least it's up and running. Thanks again
      X

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  5. I really like the idea of the window for the roof, and like what you've come up with. I don't think there's too much green in the sitting room. Perhaps a mirror above the fireplace would lighten things up? Also, the scatter cushions will help blend it all together. Well done! It's coming along beautifully!

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    1. Thanks Shannon, that's lovely of you. I'm trying to calm the green down a little but don't want to lose it completely. Never easy is it!
      hugs

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  6. Hi Simon Your room is beautiful, but since you have asked for input here is my two cents worth.... What I see in the last of the interior photos, are 3 major elements all competing with each other for attention. Your over mantle panel is so strong that it wipes out the delicate beauty of the rest of the surrounding area including your sofa. The bricks have a pattern, the carpet has a pattern but the panel shouts them all down. That leaves your wonderful sofa visually subservient to your wall.
    My suggestion ( take it or leave it) is that you rethink your focal point. Do you want people looking at the loud panel or do you want them to enjoy the beauty of your well chosen sofa?
    What would Mario Buatta do? I Don't know, but Tim Gunn would say, "make it work"
    and I know you will:))

    elizabeth

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    1. Hey Elizabeth.
      Thanks for your very good points. There is a lot going on in this room at the moment but it should all calm down - should ;-)
      The bricks at the back of the fireplace need to be blackened and the fireplace will be gilded and brushed with burnt umber to tone it down. I know what you mean about the wallpaper but Im thinking of putting green wooden panelling around it so there will be less of it and with a picture in the middle you will only see a small amount of it. Well, that's the plan at the moment ha ha
      Im so pleased you like the sofa, I love the pattern and the colour of it and thought it works ok with the green - there will be a lot of green cushions on it eventually though.
      You made me chuckle though about Mario - I dare say he'd run a mile or sue me!!
      Thanks again, I value your opinion and you've made me think more about how best not to "over do" the room and lose the impact of some of the items.
      Hugs
      Simon

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    2. And by the way Simon, I should have also Commended you on the incredible table scape behind your sofa! The framed abstract with the classical bust in front is such a Fabulous Combination. I lLOVE the mix and you have done it all so well.

      e

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    3. Oh thanks honey. I just threw stuff up there to fill the space but the picture is stuck down. I'm not sure who it's by but I got it off google images and then covered it with mod podge. I'm trying to get a mix of new and old - that's the plan at least ha ha
      Thanks again
      Su x

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  7. Well, Simon, it's working - the room does feel relaxed and inviting, but it's also very, very pretty. I like the fireplace in cream - I think it tempers the green walls nicely.

    P.S. What warts? Your work is impeccable.

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  8. Hey Queen B! ;p
    I like the classic/modern temporary look your going for. Your taking your work into a new direction, perhapse people have to get used to this directon because your previous work was more period/classic. Anywhoeha I like it! And not just because your my BFF ;0

    You know I am bitchy enough to give you my honest opinion. This is just a little preview of things to come not the end product. All the details and colour accents will blend this room together.

    As for the oval widow... ditch the top. Keep the oval and the 2 side pieces, then you have a classic oeil-de-boeuf window that will go perfect with the classic French look you are going for.

    Your house NEEDS a miniature version of the Louis XV style Ghost chair! That would look so amazing, just thinking out loud.

    Hugs!

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    1. lol
      thanks - not that you're bias or anything! You're right about the window, like Gee, I need to play around with it some more yet.
      I'll mail you tonight…
      Si

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  9. Hi Si,
    Wow! the room is so beautiful already! I love the green you chose! It is very elegant and the gold detail just pops. as for the fireplace I think you made the right decision. The green one just kind of disappeared into the room whereas this one makes a statement and is a better contrast to the wallpaper above, which by the way is such a nice touch. It is all looking wonderful and the exterior is coming along beautifully!
    Big hug,
    Giac

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    1. Hey buddy
      thanks. there's still a long way to go but you get the ida of placement etc. I'm going to put a panel above the fireplace so you won't see all that wallpaper and then put a picture up. I'll get there in the end!
      hugs
      Si

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  10. I really like the direction you're going here, Si. I can easily look beyond the construction process and see what you have in mind --and it's going to be truly stunning!

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  11. Hey John!! Thanks, I'm sooo glad you approve. I'm just desperate to get to a point where it starts making more sense! - I should be so lucky!!
    Lol

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  12. Hi Simon
    I've been on Vacation all last week so it's a wonderful surprise to come and see your progress with the living room I agree the fireplace looks better with a cream color its going to be a wonderful room I can't wait to see your pillows.

    Hugs
    Marisa


    PS if you are going to throw a cocktail party your gonna have to make a radio or a piano.... every party needs a Diva and music otherwise you'll have just a bunch of drunks and drama :)

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  13. Hello Simon,
    I love the work you have done, the green with the gold is very chique.
    Nice work with the wall panels.The miniatures are so nice.
    I wonder how the room looks with Indeed magazines or a cup of tea against five, as if you look in a lived room.
    I think it will cost you no effort to create that reality, ending, so far so very well.
    Thank you for your inspiration. Kind regards.

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  14. Hi Simon, wow, I'm really impressed with this new project of yours, it's gorgeous and build with what you had. I love your design of it, it is a great version of a French style house! I think the fireplacesurround in white (with the to add umber) is much better, it balances the room better I think. I'm really looking forward to all the progress. What a shame about your posts and other bloggerproblems...

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  15. A very elegant room. I like everything.

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  16. I love what you have done and wouldn't even attempt to make any suggestions as your work is amazing. I love what you are doing with that roof window and look forward to seeing it finished.

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  17. Hi Si
    I was away for a couple of days holiday and I am only getting caught up on my comments....but my oh my, you have been very busy. I am loving the room, it has a grand, yet lived in feel. You can immediately get the sense that this room has been used for generations. I personally love the green over the fireplace, and know what you mean that when you get a picture there, most of it will be hidden, but the impact will be there, having the cushions will most definitely pull it all together. You know what you want, you go with it. :)
    The outside is wonderful, it makes me sigh (in a content way!) each time I see it. I love it. There is something sublime about the shape. Anyway, lovely work and I can't wait to see more.
    All the best and take care.
    Vivian

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