This Little Miggy Stayed Home: Wanna See New House Pics?

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Wanna See New House Pics?

Moving in to a home is no joke.  We're settled in enough now that it's functional, but now I still have all the daily tasks of normal family life--dishes, laundry, keeping the children alive--in addition to unpacking, moving in and decorating.  Which basically means I get very little done in a typical day.   I did finally hire a wonderful and responsible pre-teen (her preferred age description :) ) from our church to come play with and watch the girls for a few hours a couple times a week.  She's so great and helpful and I'm actually able to get some stuff done.  Since we actually own this house and plan on being here longer than 2 years I'm excited to do some real-life, grown up decorating.  I know this will be a long process as I believe in surrounding yourself with meaningful pieces you love, which in my experiences takes time.  You know, like when we decided to re-do our bedroom in San Antonio and it took over a year just to make the bed and finish the quilt.  I'm always impressed with bloggers/designers who can transform a space in a matter of weeks.  For me it always seems to take time and I'm OK with that.

Anyway, I thought I'd show some pictures of our front room today.  Technically this is the formal living room, but it's also the bigger of our two living spaces and I wanted to have the TV in this bigger room because historically we spend more time in the room with the TV.  I didn't want to have this large front room and never use it--we've done that before.  We still have a long ways to go, but it's fun to see how far we've come in the month we've been here.  It wasn't too long ago that I Instagramed this picture of our front room (sorry, grainy iPhone pic):

Currently our front room looks like this:

As mentioned before we had the whole house painted before moving in which was a bit tricky since I was sampling paint colors from afar.  I honestly can't believe this, but I actually really like how every single room turned out.  Phew!  This room was originally a buttery yellow--not my style--so we had it painted in Graceful Grey from Behr.  A lovely, taupe-y looking grey, which reads as a true grey to me--no blue or purple undertones here.

As for the chairs, we actually bought them the first time we lived in Cincy with the plan to recover them quickly after.  Well I finally got them recovered just before leaving San Antonio-ha!  As much as I wish I would have done it sooner,  I know I would have chosen some crazy print that most likely I would already be sick of.  So in a way I'm really glad I waited.  And the deep navy velvet was rather risky for me, but I'm so glad I did it... I really love the pop of color.  For some reason I painted the legs white as soon as we bought the chairs only to sand them down and stain them dark again.  For the actual reupholstery work I found a great guy in San Antonio who is retired from 40+ years in the  upholstery business but still does work on the side--he was very reasonable, I would say cheap even and did a great job!  (If you live in SA I'd be happy to share his info).  He also told me these were great chairs--made with hardwood and worth reupholstering.  That made me feel good!  Here's a before and after of the chairs (the colors above are more accurate as it's more of a deep navy, than a bright sapphire):
The only other new purchases in this room are the rug (West Elm), a good rug pad and the acrylic side table purchased from a local thrift store.  

One of the other projects I decided to tackle was repainting our TV/entertainment unit.  We have such a love/hate relationship with this piece.  It's sturdy, but not exactly quality.  But it is large and has worked for a variety of different spaces.  We bought this for our very first apartment in NYC when I painted it a weird brownish/avocado color.  When we moved to Cincinnati the first time I painted it white and used it in PSP's room.  The white was a thousand times better, but as you can see over time it's peeled, scratched and just looked dingy with a clearly rolled-on paint job.  OK this picture looks super gross, like we never clean it, but this is mostly scratches and scrape marks from other objects that wouldn't wipe off.  But lets be honest, some of it is dirt.  We're gross.

We really want to build a new media center and maybe some bookshelves but that's not happening anytime soon.  So while I once swore I would never paint this beast again, I decided it would be worth it because I just don't know how long we're going to be using it.  Plus I finally invested in the famous Critter Spray gun per Jenny Komenda's advice and you guys...SO MUCH EASIER!  Buy it, use it and love it.  Be sure to read Jenny's tips and well it will change your furniture painting life forever.

My only regret is that I didn't sand it down even better....I figured that since it's not something we're going to hold on to that much longer, I'm not going to be super stickler about it.  I sorta wish I would have gone through the extra effort, but whatever... it's still so much smoother and much more even.  

Well that's basically the front room right now--we obviously still have a long ways to go--hanging art/pictures, styling and I want to do some changes to the sectional, etc...but right now it's just nice to have a clean space to hangout and relax in.

I'll leave you with a few teaser pics... see this lovely pile of wood?

You guys, this is a beautiful pile of walnut that we got on craigslist for a STEAL.  This means we're going to have lots of material for projects galore--I've been dreaming of projects left and right.  Luckily B loves woodworking as much as I love thinking of ways for wood to be worked.  So we might not have time for a media center and bookshelves at the moment, but we do have the wood.  And last week we tackled our first--albeit small--woodworking project.  New shelves for the studio.  This has probably been the most neglected room in the house, but with these shelves installed, it's looking better already.  I love how they turned out and I can't wait to get more done in this room--I have some great ideas now I just need the time!

Anyway, studio pre-shelves:

Studio post shelves:

It's still a crazy mess, but believe it or not, it's coming along.

One last thing... a question really.  Does anyone else have a hard time trying to decorate or design the space of your dreams?  In find myself feeling guilty for wanting to have a beautiful home, and spending the resources--time and money--to do so.  I honestly believe loving your home and making it a beautiful space you enjoy living in is a worthy investment, but sometimes I have a hard time actually pulling the trigger.  Anyone else ever struggle with this?  How do you move past this mentality?  Or do you?

**Also--We finally got all my paintings that were stockpiled at my in-laws house and I need to be clearing a lot of this out.. so in the next few weeks I'm going to be selling a lot of my work on Instagram at discounted prices.  So if you've ever wanted to purchase a piece of mine this would be a good time to do so.  Details to come.**


  1. Spending money on the house is SO hard for me. I want a nice space because this is where I spend all my time, and I think it helps set the tone of the house... but there are always so many other worthy ways to spend the money. Sigh. I try to just be really grateful for what I have and save patiently for other things. Like getting rid of my ugly, scratched up kitchen floor.

  2. Elisabeth12:19 PM

    I want to buy a painting of yours! Can't wait to see details.

  3. Since you don't have much to do (ha ha), this would be a good time to update your blog picture with L and PSP to include Zuzu. Also, there is nothing wrong with wanting your house to be a beautiful space. My two college-age daughters live hundreds of miles away, but come home to visit often to see me, their dad, and also, their home. They miss this house like a family member when they are not here. My older daughter says, "Our house is beautiful and peaceful, like a sanctuary, but a loud and crazy sanctuary!"

  4. Karine12:31 PM

    Don't feel guilty about wanting your home to be beautiful. As an artist, you couldn't have it any other way. It is a necessity for you, like having a place to sit is a necessity. You wouldn't go without a couch or chairs or a kitchen table, you can't go without beauty. I can totally relate. Just a funny sidenote, I grew up in a house that was practically empty because my mother didn't want to put anything she didn't LOVE into her beautiful house. It took until I was about 15 to have furniture in every room, but even when the rooms were empty she had art on the walls!

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  7. Liz the PT12:14 AM

    I have a terrible time pulling the trigger on anything more than painting. Partly this is because I have a 1926 house so everything needs work, but partly it's my innate frugality. I have just made myself a promise that I will fork over the $50-75 (WOO HOO) needed to mulch and plant with ground cover my parking strip, which is super trashy at the moment. One thing at a time. But I've been cruising area rugs and duvet covers too... ;)

  8. It looks amazing! Miss you guys! Wish to see it in person real soon!

  9. I love what you do with your homes! So cool that you thrifted that acrylic table - lucky! Nice to know that you take your time, too. I don't think I've ever "finished" a home before we've moved away.

    Also I have been thinking lately how I really need a Miggy original on my wall. Can't wait to see some paintings for sale.

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