Sunday, May 27, 2007

I got my base coat on the first section of wall. I'd post a photo of it but it's, uhm....


I took a couple of photos but the color just doesn't show. I'll work on applying the top colors and wait until I can show you a "Step A", "Step B", "Step C" progression of pictures. I'll show you some photos of a real old wall instead.

I mentioned my friend who is also remodeling - this is her neighbor's front garden. It's a giant hill of stones and a beautiful old retaining wall. With all the rock garden plants blooming, this is the prettiest time of year to view it. It goes on another six feet or so to the right.

I have a retaining wall and steps in my front yard too. Mine are only a fraction of the height and although they are crumbling and cracked, they don't yet have the old world charm these do. Which makes me wonder, at what point does one make a decision to either fix something up or let it age?

When I was in my early twenties, I happened upon an old botanical print at a garage sale. The woman wanted quite a bit for it, I think $5 or something huge like that. Laugh, but $5 was more money back then and more to the point, it was a much bigger percentage of our income. The woman wouldn't come down on the price. It was her grandmother's print and as she explained the history of it, now that she thought about it, she wasn't even sure she wanted to sell it. I quickly handed her the money before she could change her mind.

I don't know what appealed to me more - the beautiful floral print or the aged mat and weathered, cream colored frame. I began to show my new treasure to friends and everyone seemed to agree that it was indeed a beautiful old print. Yet almost to a person each added "But don't you want to reframe it?" (the exception, my mom, who also admires the beauty found in old things)

I already suspected that others didn't necessarily share my love of old things, things worn and with a bit of history showing. I don't think the term "shabby chic" had even been coined yet. Funny how over the years my sense of style has gone from eccentric to mainstream. (At the time I was also teased pretty unmercifully about my odd insistence on organic gardening and my strange use of herbal concoctions. That's me, just ahead of my time!)

I still have the print - wait, let me go take a photo of it for you.... (aren't digital cameras one of the best inventions EVER!?)....

As you can see, I didn't reframe it.

Watching a beautiful room come together on a design show on the HGTV channel tonight, William asked when our house was going to look as stylish as the one on the television. Good question. I boldly answered "Maybe by the end of the summer." Honestly, I answered it more like this - "Maybe by the end of the summer?" - with a question mark at the end of it. An overly optimistic answer, but I'm hoping high expectations will help me persevere.

I'll just keep my eye on the top goal and climb toward it one step at a time.

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