It has been said so many times now in decorating circles that it has become a cliche: Listen to your house to see what it is telling you about how it wants to be decorated.
Some cliches, despite overuse, ring true.
When working on this cottage, I took some hints from what was already there, such as the tall windows, original doors, simple baseboards, and paneled walls. Other clues came from the things that lay hidden behind a false facade (like the crown molding hidden beneath the drop ceiling and the trim boards discovered in the basement).
The house gets great light, and all decisions were made to accentuate that fact. Pale walls and natural elements were what the house was asking for.
The paneled walls lend a casual air to the rooms, so worn furnishings seem to fit right in.
The sea grass rugs and woven roman shades add loads of texture. My painted furniture blends well with the neutral backdrop. Velvet chairs and silk pillows add richness.
Plants scattered around the room and out on the porch bring the outdoors in.
Mirrors, mercury glass, and polished metal add sparkle and glamor.
The pale blues make me smile. They are hues I have always gravitated toward and they look lovely with shades of cream, sand, and stormy grey.
Natural accents, such as the raw wood tray and found antlers speak of the forest surrounding my town.
House plants and nature-themed accents reveal my other love-- gardening.
Greenery, visible through the front window, makes me feel more at home in town, after having been a country girl for so many years.
A corner of the dining room shows a mixture of natural materials-- antlers, crystal, bronze, and a variety of wood finishes.
Bits of black peppered throughout the rooms add contrast and keep spaces from being too delicate.
Moving has been more work than I thought it would be. We are still settling in. There is still much unpacking left to be done, but things are coming into focus. I will continue to listen to this old house, letting it dictate what needs to be done to help it achieve its fullest potential. After so many years of neglect, I think it is happy to finally be loved and understood once again.
Until next time...