Tuesday, September 28, 2010


This is what we call "the middle bedroom" at 419 S. Taylor.  It's between the front bedroom and the back sunporch master bedroom.  This middle bedroom has probably been used as the master bedroom for most of the house's history because the front bedroom has french doors onto the living room and the sunporch is plumbed to be the laundry room (which, if you as me, is a complete waste of the best room in the house!).

In this photo, the walls look like they might be a nice warm yellow.  They're not.  They're a bland, cheap-looking, antiqued white panelling (you can see this a little better off to the side in one of the lower photos).  The carpet is sculptured blue with rust stains.  Pretty.

I found a can of paint in the garage that was left by previous occupants.  It turned out to be a really wonderful shade of orange -- probably better than I could have chosen myself! 

First I used it on the wainscotting in the little hallway between the bedrooms and the bathroom.  Here's a picture of some cute guy helping me!  And a picture of the finished product (I'm still playing with the wreath form hanging on the wall.  Someday it will be something.  For now it's just sculptural!). 

They say to put rich colors up against dark woods and this certainly proves the validity of that premise to me!  The wonderful, rich, 95-year-old woodwork just comes to life next to this warm, vibrant color!

Mark went to a garage sale one Saturday morning and bought a box containing five old radios and two old adding machines for $4 (for everything - including mud dobber wasp nests and dust!).  Mark's mother and brothers throught he was nuts and asked why he would buy all that junk. After that he was a little reluctant to show them to me but I TOTALLY get it!  I think they are completely COOL!  And I knew exactly what to do with them! 

The middle bedroom had been giving me fits! I had absolutely no vision for it. Until the radios came! I had known something would come to inspire me and I'd been waiting for the epiphany to happen.! And there was that can of orange paint still lurking around. And there's that cutting from a Pottery Barn catalog that I keep propped up so I can look at it as often as possible (you can tell because it's well-worn and water spotted!).  And it call came together!

The far wall went orange.  Forgive the mess in the rest of the photo, this was just my photo to carry around with me to admire the orange! 

There were two more of those shutter bi-fold doors that I used for shelves in the living room. I had several sets of wooden shelf brackets (which still need to be painted orange to match the wall). The radios went up and we just LOVE it!  I swear the pale blue radio on the bottom right was in Mike and Carole Brady's room on The Brady Bunch.  Can't you just see it?  The second one from the right on the top shelf has been known to play Harry Truman speeches late at night...

Three more radios have joined the collection.  The 1954(?) Philco on the top left came out of a dumpster.  Can you believe it?  Who cares that it doesn't work, it just COOL!  The one to the right of that was the radio I had in my room in high school.  The radio at the top right has a leather case (that you can't rally see) and also came from a dumpster.  I had one of those psychic moments:  After much prowling, I said to Mark, "I'm done."  As the words left my mouth I knew I wasn't.  I knew that I was about to find something good.  Then I moved a piece of newspaper and there was my radio just waiting for me! 

The two adding machines found their home atop this cabinet that came from the curb beside a neighbor's house.  Previously a built-in, it looks MUCH better with new knobs but is still patiently awaiting a real top and some paint on the sides.  I like the chippy paint on the front so it will probably stay.

Mark and I talk frequently about how we just love to look at the older adding machine (which we can see from bed). And we marvel that it even came with rolls of replacement paper! Now that I look at the picture, I can see the perfect spot up there by the adding machines for the vintage metal "Radar O-Reilly" (from MASH) desk lamp that I have lurking around!

I'll tell you about the other side of the room soon!

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