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...


Tuesday, May 1, 2012

The Look for Less: Pearson Room in Traditional Home 2

Well, I changed my mind.  I thought I wasn't going to shop for accessories, but I just can't get this image out of my head:

The accessories are the printed pillow, the orchid, the painting, and the Chinese vases.

But first, I am adding one more rug I found at Overstock.com that I think would go well with the furniture I put together (and the furniture in the inspiration photo).

Another Area Rug:

 I had offered two rather plain geometric area rugs in my prior post to complement my proposed furniture and I think either one of those would work well with the furniture I selected, depending upon the upholstery color chosen.  This rug goes in an entirely different direction in its looks, but I think it would be just wonderful working with the elements in the room and it's got such fabulous colors that would tie-into the colorways of the inspiration photo.  It is from Overstock.com, Loomed Free-Form Sage Geometric Rug (5'3" x 7'6") for only $91.99 (today's price) - nearly knocked me off my chair when I saw it (and the price):

This rug, in the inspiration room or the alternative looks I offered, this would definitely be me! But it definitely would take the room in a different direction than the inspiration photo, where the pieced-together stripped area rug interjects a "moderne" look into the traditional scheme. 

Decorative Pillows:

I love these Geneva pillows.  The paisley print just sends me over the Moon, it's so rich and evocative of the Orient and opulence, but still goes with just about every style. They come in a nice array of mostly neutral colors. I consider them a real bargan at the two-for price $36.99 (at least, for today that's the price) at Overstock.com:

Going in a different direction, I liked these Roman pillows.  If you want to introduce some blue or grey/blue into the equation, these pillows offer that option, and they're on sale (for today) at $37.99 for two at Overstock.com:

And, even less expensive but in beautiful colors - I love this solid with a little bit of "pattern" - also frm Overstock.com, the Helena pillow, two-for $27.99 (just today):

The Orchids:

I thought I wrote last night (but I must have deleted it) that the look of the orchids sitting on the coffee table could easily be duplicated by buying some white long stemmed orchids and putting them inside a square heavy-based clear glass short vase. 

But as an alternative, I offer the following, all from Gumps.com.  Gump's is one of my favorite sites to window shop.  Sometimes I even buy something.  Gump's can be very expensive, but all of their merchandise is high quality, and sometimes there are amazing bargains to be found. 

This Gump's orchid is a single stem, 23" tall offered in "dark metallic patinaed" planter, $48.00. 

A slightly shorter (by an inch), dual stemmed white Phalaenopsis Orchid is offered in a "twig basket with a flared wooden dish" for $60.00:

Maybe these could even be taken out of their containers (which could be put to use for another arrangement elsewhere) and put into a square glass vase, as in the inspiration photo.

Chinese Vases:

Awf!  I've found lots of Chinese vases and all I can say is that, regardless of whether they are for real or are absolutely fake, for the sizes I'm shopping for, they are way too expensive for my pocketbook.  I hate to use this as a cop-out, but Chinese-style vases or something that has the colors you've used in your room and not necessarily "Chinese-style" should probably be shopped for in gently-used furniture stores, commercial outlets and charity outlets like Goodwill, Purple Heart, etc.   What I was looking for was LARGE pieces that could anchor the top of these relatively short bookcases/cabinets.  My goal is budget decorating.  The vases, urns and jars in the inspiration photo are beautiful -- and did you notice they're all the same pattern and color?  But they are expensive!  Too expensive for my pocketbook.

Creative alternatives abound, of course!  First, a personal collection of vases, to interject your own personal signature into the room.  I've seen collections of "white" (fired white and also spray-painted white) vases that are really cool.  You could actually do any color you wished if you're willing to shop around, buy cheapo ceramics and spray paint them, perhaps even venturing into the artistic and adding some stencils, paper-mache' or hand-painted designs. 

For some beautiful pieces of blue and white "pottery" (I cannot attest if they are actually true porcelain or if they were actually hand-crafted, or even created in China, etc.) here are a few websites I found with big inventories:

Oriental Furniture (vases, also look under jars)
Blue and White Vases (etc.)

If you have $299.00 (plus shipping and insurance), check out this beautiful 'antique' that looks VERY much like the design in the inspiration photo Chinese pottery.  It's a Ching Dynasty interpretion of a Ming Dynasty design (circa 1750 CE).  No representations as to whether this is real or not, but it sure is beautiful!

The Painting:

Ahhh, yes, the painting.  Aside from the purely personal matter of aesthetics and the individual tastes that each of us brings into our own heavenly homes, there was the practical challenge presented of the size of this painting!  It is really really long!  I figured it would have to be at least 66 inches(5' 6") long to cover two sets of bookshelves or cabinets; or two (or more) similarly themed paintings covering at least that much space would be required. 

More about the painting (or paintings) tomorrow.

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