More house progress! Removing the living room wallpaper was a serious pain in the ass. My mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, daughter and husband all worked with me (and in the case of my mother, much more than me) to get the wallpaper off this wall. There was a thin liner underneath the regular wallpaper that had to be steamed and scraped away shreds at a time. Ouch. But now it’s off! Mom and I primed the newly-bare walls, which had never been painted in their 71 years, then painted them a perky green called spring cactus. I made the curtains from fabric I found online and posted about previously, from Heather Bailey’s Pop Garden collection. This is a room we needed some furniture for when we moved into this house. I fell in love with the Eames-inspired tulip chair from an online discount store, and we bought the light fixture and white sofa (below) from IKEA. This room is meant to house my collection of hobnail milk glass, and the bumpy white lamp and chair are really just accessories to my beloved dishes. I have a less-is-more attitude toward some things, but dishes are just not one of them. I love dishes. I have way too many. But hey, better dishes than drugs and booze, right?
After I hung the new curtains this weekend Dorothy came into the room. She immediately noticed the curtains and rushed over to the windows to admire. “Wow! These new curtains are so pretty! They are going to look beautiful at my birthday party.” My husband came home an hour or so later and his reaction was not as satisfying. I had to drag him into the room to see the curtains, which I doubt he’d have noticed on his own. He glanced and said, “oh, those look nice.” He might have said the same thing if I’d hung paper bags in the window. If I hadn’t prompted him he might never have noticed they were there. This is why I’m so grateful to have a daughter.
My over-the-sofa art is going to be supplied by my children. I purchased artists canvases at a craft store and covered them with more of the Pop Garden fabric using a staple gun. I have a can of low-tack spray adhesive that I’m going to use to adhere a rotating collection of the kids’ art to the screens. This felt like a formal but fun way to honor their artwork. I have admired framed child art in other people’s homes, but I’m thinking this will be easier to peel off or stick up art as their talents and interests change.
Now all I have to do to finish this room is patch and paint the ceiling, paint all the trim, mop off the bits of wallpaper that seem to have stuck to the floor, buy a coffee table, sew throw-pillows, buy a coordinating shade for the milk glass lamp (not shown), sew a Pop Garden scarf for the piano, find or make an entry-way rug, paint or replace the plant stand that doesn’t seem to match, and find the rest of my milk glass in a box downstairs. It’s a good thing my baby sleeps through the night and I have nothing else to do all day, right? Oh wait…
And today is my daughter’s actual birthday. She gets to bring a treat to school to share with her classmates, so we made cupcakes with lavender icing at her request. I love this recipe for vanilla cupcakes and have made it several times, even though the method of adding the butter to the batter seems rather unorthodox. The cupcakes don’t turn golden-brown until they are over baked–you have to do the toothpick test to get them out in time–but they come out really moist and they hold their shape nicely so you can eat them without having most of your cupcake dissolve into crumbs all over your lap. According to Dorothy’s birthday wish the cupcakes needed to have her classmates names on them, so we did that too. I printed the names onto a sheet of card stock and we just cut, glued and folded the little tags onto toothpicks. Hopefully the birthday girl will feel like she got all her birthday wishes granted today. She woke up pretty excited!