AS MOST OF YOU KNOW, we recently redecorated our entrance hall. Would you like to see the before and after pictures? Actually, I can take you way back. Back, in fact, to how the hall looked in December, 2001, when we first visited this house with a real estate agent. Are you holding a stiff drink? Good. You’re going to need it:
The entrance hall, as we first saw it in 2001: Potential buyers turned on their heels the moment they saw this room. And who can blame them? The blood-red walls, the crumbling plaster, and the rotted, wall-to-wall carpeting were enough to dissuade even Herman and Lily Munster. But we fell in love with the 11.5-foot ceilings, the black walnut pocket doors, and the elaborately-carved archway over the bay window.
After purchasing the house in early 2002, we repaired and re-plastered the walls, removed the shag carpeting (what a job!) and sanded and refinished the floors. Then the walls were painted “Old Paris Yellow,” a custom-blend made by Liberty Paint in Hudson, NY. I painted the wainscot with Benjamin Moore’s “Soft Fern.”
Alas, after living with these colors for 10 years, we felt it was time for a change.
And what a change! We gave the room a brighter, more-classical look, by papering the walls. The pattern, called “Duxbury,” is a Federal-era reproduction from Waterhouse Wallhangings.
I chose Benjamin Moore’s “Norway Spruce” for the wainscoting. The color can change from blue to green, depending on the time of day.
Frankly, I enjoy paint that can’t make up its mind.
Don’t pretend that your eyes didn’t ascend the staircase just now.
Who knew that conquistadors could be so judgmental?
But I’m afraid he might be right about the wainscot color.
Oh. If you’re wondering, the door straight ahead leads to the dining room we restored several years ago. Would you like to see it?
We hosted a cocktail party here last week, and because drinks were served in the parlor, we had to temporarily remove chairs from that room. I placed them under the stairs and found I really like the effect. On the mahogany tea table is one of the bowls of tropical narcissi I’m forcing for Christmas and New Year’s bloom. You can’t imagine how they rejoiced when I returned them to the window in the parlor.
Now, if you’d like to see the work that went into papering the walls — and believe me, these old walls took ample preparation — be sure to read this post.
Meanwhile, maybe you can tell about any decorating-projects you’d like to accomplish in your own home. As always, I love to hear from you.
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