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The Library, Rearranged

I’ve been getting the “oh, you’re nesting!” comments from friends and family a lot lately, and maybe it’s true. I’m organizing closets. I’m arranging and rearranging and then rearranging some more. I think I’ve kind of hit on a good arrangement in the library though (and identified a key missing piece!), so I thought I’d snap a few photos today.

Making it Lovely's LIbrary

I don’t know if the rug is going to stay. I like it, but I think it’s a little too sweet in the room and the library is either calling for bare floors or something with an entirely different feel. It’s a little too small anyway.

Black and White Vintage Sofa in a Library

Home Library

I like the black and white sofa in front of the bookshelves. There is room for the library ladder to roll behind there, so it’s not blocking any access, but I don’t know if I’m crazy about lining up that sofa with the blue one facing the same way in the next room over.

Double Parlor

And then there’s that missing piece the room needs: a secretary desk! Yes. This side of the room needs something with some height, and a desk would be useful. I’m thinking it should be black, with masculine lines to offset all of the pink and girly going on in there. Something that won’t compete with the bookshelves, but that can hold its own in the space.

Spot for a Secretary Desk

All right, back to nesting! Today’s my birthday, but I don’t think the baby’s interested in making his debut today (though there’s still time, eh?). I’m angling for tomorrow so he can share the date with my grandma, but I’m not due until Friday.

Making it Yours 12: The Lincoln and Dhurrie Armchairs

I asked last week which would be more helpful to see in a new edition of my Making it Yours series: the Lincoln Upholstered Armchair from Pottery Barn or the Dhurrie Chair from Anthropologie. Basically it’s a blank slate vs. a statement piece. It was pretty even at first, but the dhurrie chair did win out in the end.

Lincoln and Dhurrie Chairs

A few comments suggested doing both, which sounded like a fun challenge! I typically split the series into three designs, showing a piece as the owner’s life and decorating taste changes, and I’m going to stick with that format here again. Rather than do six posts between the two chairs, I’ll create a short narrative and present two options per post. It’s a good exercise in obtaining a similar design through different pieces, and I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I have been while working on it.

And in related news: I bought two of those dang Lincoln chairs, which I wasn’t planning on when I posted about them last week. I had been considering them for the house, as I’ve been perpetually on the lookout for a pair of matching chairs for the back parlor. At more than $2000 with tax and delivery for two of them though, I was far from rushing to make a purchase. Then two things happened. First, I noticed that American Express was running a sale on a bunch of their Membership Rewards points gift cards, which included instant e-gift certificates to Pottery Barn. Second: I saw the chair marked down about 35% off as a floor model at the Oakbrook PB when I was out that way over the weekend. I hadn’t cashed in my Amex points in a long time so I had enough to buy the floor model outright with some leftover to buy the matching chair at retail, but I still wasn’t sold. Then the sales associate mentioned that some of the other stores in the area might have theirs marked down as a floor model too. She called the Lincoln Park location, confirmed that they also had one, and that solidified the deal. After using my free gift certificates, they ended up costing only $180 each. That’s like them being on sale for 85% off! I brought one chair home with me that day, and we got the other one yesterday.

Lincoln Pottery Barn Chairs

So now I have extra incentive to see how much mileage I can get out of them in different design scenarios!

Teal for the Entryway?

I like the way open-concept homes look but I prefer to live in a house with separate rooms, and Victorians are certainly known for having lots of rooms. Ours has the entryway, double parlor, and dining room all open to each other with wide doorways (the pocket doors of which are nearly always open). If you sit in the center of our teal sofa, you could see all four rooms, and into the kitchen too.

I See Everything!

I like thinking about the design for the first floor as a whole, since you do see multiple rooms at once. The dining room will likely get Fornasetti’s Chiavi Segrete wallpaper once we can afford to do it. (The nursery and second floor renovation is getting top priority right now.) It would look a little something like this.

Dining Room

Now that both parlors have been painted and I know what’s likely going in the dining room, I’ve been trying to decide on a color for the entryway. The window and door face East, but the porch and large tree out front block a lot of the light for much of the day. And there’s a whole lot of oak paneling and trim. I’ve had it in my head all along that I want to bring in more teal to that side of the house to reference the sofa, but I was going to do it through accessories and keep the walls neutral. Maybe teal on the walls is the way to go though?

BHG Teal Paints
BHG Teal Paint Colors

Another option is Sandberg’s Raphael wallpaper in dark blue.

Sandberg Raphael Wallpaper

I have a sample and it looks perfect, but it doesn’t work with the other wallpaper. I think that between the two, I’d rather go with papering the dining room — which brings me back to teal for the entry. I’ve been playing around with my design boards in Photoshop (you’ve seen them in various stages on the blog before), virtually rearranging things and trying out different combinations. I shared this screenshot on Instagram the other day.

I would probably go a little deeper and darker than the paint colors in that BHG palette above, but not so dark that it competes with the black in the back parlor. What do you think?

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