Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Up on the Wall

I am a slow decorator. We've lived in our house a year and a half and there are still walls with nothing on them. In fact I think I'd been warming up to the sparse minimalist look, but that ended over 3 weeks ago when I took down all the Christmas decorations and realized my living room was bare and borrrrrrrrrrrrring! So, I finally took action, and now there are things up on the walls - at least in the living room. And while I'm not sure what's there now will stay or that I won't add more, I thought I'd share my latest "project".

First I wanted to tackle the empty space on either side of our very large front windows. At Christmas I'd had an ornament wreath hanging on the left side and the Christmas tree in the right corner. Taking those things down made me feel as if something were missing. I'd remembered seeing this post on Little Green Notebook and I thought 2 of these might look cool in my living room, at least the colors seemed to go, and at only $4.50 a pop how could I go wrong? If it didn't work out I could always pass the goods along to my mother for one of her paper "quilts" or use them to wrap up a special gift. At least that was my reasoning. So I ordered away, they arrived shortly, I purchased 2 of the largest Ribba frame they make, and here you have it:
Ben was studying, didn't have the heart to ask him to move. There's not enough of him on here anyway.

I wasn't sure at first, but hung them on the wall anyway to give it a trial run. I like it. Inexpensive, easy, fun. And if something better comes along, I won't feel guilty replacing them :) Perfect. For now.

Then I had the problem with the wall above the entertainment center/tv console. Nothing had yet to occupy the space. That empty expanse of gray bugged me all the time. I was waiting for the perfect solution. It never came, and so one night last week I sat down and sketched this.

The plants, hurricanes, and family photos on the console were already there. The mirror was one I'd seen recently on Young House Love and the frames I'd seen at Ikea and really just added them in to take up more space. It's a big wall. No idea what I was going to put in them. I liked the sketch, showed it to Ben, he said, "looks good", and then I went shopping. Got it all up on the wall (without anything in the frames) and then pondered art. Etsy art, ebay art, homemade art. I'm on a budget. Hmmmm. I couldn't commit to anything. Then I remembered that I love silhouettes. And the silhouettes we have are in the master bedroom. Which nobody ever goes in besides us.

Time to bring out the silhouettes. There was a couple problems though - the silhouettes weren't the right size and were framed with an oval border. Solved that by scanning them in, downloading a free trial of Photoshop, photoshopping out the border, resizing them and printing 'em out. On regular printer paper. Maybe I'll get around to having them printed for real. Maybe not. I'm not sure I can tell the difference when they're up on the wall. Can you? But we only have 2 silhouettes, and not one of just Claire. Boo. Could I do it myself? Vaguely remembered a past post on YHL on DIYing your own. Looked it up. Looked up another. And attempted it. Took this picture of Claire:

and broke out my newly downloaded 30 day free trial of Photoshop. Followed the tutorials. Worked like a charm:
Man she has a big head.

Now for that 4th frame......a silhouette of a dog or cat that we don't own? Nope. Something to symbolize family? 'bout a tree? Okay! Googled 'tree silhouette' and came up with this free image:Oaks have nice deep root systems. Right? Symbolic of how stable and grounded and lasting I hope my family to be.

Downloaded it, resized it, added our last name and wedding date, tried to add 4 little brightly colored birdies with names and birthdates, failed. Not that good with Photoshop yet. Can you even do that with Photoshop? Oh well, good enough for me! For now.

Loving my "new" living room. The End. Phew!

Wait!!! One more thing. What do you think of that last picture? I've considered that maybe the wall's too blah. Needs more color. What if I painted the mirror frame? Or printed the silhouettes in a bright color instead of black. Something to match the pillows? or the lamp I scored from Homegoods? Thoughts?


Mindy Burns said...

This is such a talent! You are amazing! I see little glimpses of your mom's house in these pics but with a completely Bridget spin! Love it! Can you come to AZ to help me? I personally think the mirror would look awesome if it were painted- a pop of color on that wall would look good- I like the black and white squares, so if anything, I'd paint the mirror a color from your pillows...or even some colorful vinyl...I'm sure you'll figure it out! It looks great!

Kelly Nordfelt said...

You should paint the mirror the same color blue as your lamp. I bet my paint would match, you could use some. Then come over to my house and help me. You have

Kelly Nordfelt said...

(Let me finish)...You have great style.

Abbie said...

My thought: looooove it! Looks so so so great! Good work!

Tiff said...

You have a great eye. It looks really nice. :)

A thought for color? Are there mats in those silhouette frames? Maybe paint those...? Either 4 different colors? Or find scrapbook paper that matches your pillows and mod podge it to the mats? Maybe.

Kendra said...

Ok, you are so not slow. I have been in my house for four years and still haven't properly decorated. I need your help! Come be my interior designer!

hilary w said...

Your house looks great! I always remembered what great style you had, even in your little Wymount apartment.

Please give us a source list for that room! Specifically, where did you get your couch and your rug? Those are two things on my shopping list!

Amber said...

I've lived in my house 7 years and it still needs some decorating help. It's exhausting just thinking about it.

Amber said...

BTW, it looks really good. I like it.

Jean said...

I love it!!! It looks fantastic. Your hard work paid off. Btw, we've been in our apartment for 9 months and we haven't hung up ANYTHING on ANY walls. (That's mainly because we want to get out of Tulsa, haha!) But yeah - I get the frustration with blank walls. :-)

honey said...

I love it Bridget! (no internet yet at home so I'm slow) At the gift show in all the big furniture stores the most popular thing I loved was bright lacquered mirror frames and chairs. White and black of course were big but bright blue and shiny like your lamp was there too! I loved the look, it has to be verrrrrrry shiny! Maybe the mirror. Usually the frames are very ornate, but I don't think that would make a difference! love yadee