January 31, 2018:


Today is the Super Duper Blue Red Full Eclipse Partial Eclipse Moon, depending on where you may be viewing from.

Three years ago this day was my last day of working and I retired after 46 years of full-time work. I've enjoyed every single moment of my retirement since then - three years and hoping for twenty more, we'll see how things go...

February and March can be cruel months in southeastern Wisconsin where I live. January itself was nutso here weather-wise, with two separate thaws. I don't ever remember getting two January thaws before, and many years none happened at all.

Before I know it I'll be headed to Las Vegas to visit my friends and celebrate some sunshine and warm weather, and see a show (I always try to squeeze one in). Meanwhile, I am continuing, slowly, to make this smaller retirement ranch into a home that makes me smile in every room. I still have lots to do, including major painting projects. I keep putting them off. Seems at 66 I'm not so keen on painting as I was at 36. Gee, I wonder why...


Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Look for Less!

Nope, I haven't died (much as some of you might have wished for it - admit it - you know who you are...)

I SURVIVED TAX SEASON ONCE AGAIN, bwwwwwwwwwaaaaaaaahhhhhaaaaaaaaaa!

I wanted to get this post started tonight.  It is image intensive and long, so I'm chopping it up into sections.  Tonight, I do tables and chairs!

I saw this dining room in the May, 2012 Traditional Home print magazine, and just loved it!

It also happened to be the cover of the magazine!  It was designed by (hope I got this right) Jeff Andrews of Jeff Andrews Design, Los Angeles, CA.

I thought it would make a PERFECT room to do the "look for less."  Now I'm lazy, I admit it.  I did not price out the various items in this photograph, such as the wallpaper, which is "Malabar" -- love that name! -- in sage and pale blue #66/1005, by Cole & Son; Lee Joffa.  Well, come on, anything offered by Lee Joffa doesn't have a price tag on it at a website one can visit, and that means that us ordinary mortals CANNOT AFFORD IT.  I was actually shocked to see that Lee Joffa has a website!

The area rug is silk - SILK!  The dining table is custom-made.  The chairs, which I absolutely adore, are "Loop-Back" chairs by Council Furniture.  The chandelier is white porcelain (!!!) from lightingshowroom.com.  The bronze cranes are from the 1950s -- from 1st Leap, Inc

You can get the full list of items (including the window seat fabric, pillows, the light bulbs, etc. etc. and even who made the damn nails, I think) from page 172 of the print edition of Traditional Home, because they are just so wonderful that way!  I would type it out here, but the print is very tiny and even with my Walgreens readers on it's hard for me to make out.

I limited my shopping to readily accessible sources where the prices are posted up front -- but occasionally I broke my own rules.  My aim was for a reasonable facsimile, not an exact copy, because I don't have the budget for an exact copy!  Also, no Craig's List items, only shopping retail new online.


Absolutely adored this Elba Round Dining Table by Thomasville -- no price listed.  Damn!  From  the - get this - Hills of Tuscany Collection.  Sigh.  Sounds so romantic.  I want to get my butt to Tuscany before my butt is too old to move over dem der hills of Tuscany...  It is 60 inches diameter and seats six (the table in the "inspiration" photo also seats six so I figure it it at least 60 inches diameter). 

The Magnolia round dining table in dark oak is also 60 inches in diameter and gorgeous!  Priced at $1,875.00:
This is a lot more than I would want to pay for a single pedestal table, but its pedestal is particularly appealing - it's graceful and not bulky looking.

I found this budget alternative but the table top is glass, not wood.  Still, the price is right and the look is fab.  It's from Macy's, the Andorra glass top round pedestal dining table, 60" wide, and priced at $899.  For about $1000 less than the beautiful Magnolia table, above, one could afford to have a nice piece of luan cut to size, stain it to match the pedestal, and plop the glass top on it:

This next table is not large enough to seat six. It is 54" in diameter. I have a 56" diameter table that comfortably seats five, but seating six, I don't think it would work. Everyone would be banging elbows. But for a slightly smaller table than the one pictured in the "inspiration" photo, check it out:

It is by Riverside, Round Pedestal Semi-Formal Dining Table, Width (side to side) 54" W
Height (bottom to top) 30" H, not all wood (as you know, I'm not adverse to "fake wood") -- Composition Wood Veneers & Solids Finish & Paint Options. Dark wood finish. The table is normally listed for $901.00 but where I found it at Papaya Furniture it was on sale for $410.00. Smaller but for $410.00 - definitely an option!


I did not find a chair that was a "spot on" look-alike, but I did find the chairs below that I felt gave the feel of the look and was a good approximation of the "inspiration" look.  The chairs in the inspiration photo are all arm chairs, and they have that "square back" with "circle" effect, and light-colored upholstery, so that's what I was looking for.

From overstock.com, are these Somerton Crossroads armchairs, about $320 for a pair:

I like this chair for its gracefully slanted arms and great proportions, and it has the open circular work on the back.

Also from overstock.com is the Somerton Signature Upholstered Arm Chair, about $350 for a pair but being offered at a special price if I put them into my shopping cart :)

It's not as close to the look in the "inspiration" photo -- it's got a solid upholstered circle in its back rather than the airy, graceful curved wood effect of the original, but it has the "circle within the square" effect and has nice lines and good proportions.  I also like the somewhat taller back.  It looks like it would be a very comfortable chair to sit back in after a delicious dinner and settle in for apertifs, dessert and sparkling conversation.


  1. I saw this too and LOVED it! I just did my dining room in navy blue and after seeing this picture I want to paint it all over again. :-) Nice post!

  2. Thanks! I had fun doing it, and I have been thinking about using a similar wallpaper on one wall in my open area dinette right off the kitchen. It's a small enough area that if I don't like it I can take it right back down and will only take about a roll, so nothing ventured, nothing gained. If it works, I will put up pics. That is on my list of projects that may be done oh, 10 years from now...