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Connecticut Avenue Duplex: Exterior Paint Selection

by Sarah on July 21, 2014, one comment

Lately I feel like I’ve been in a perpetual state of paint color selection.

It was time to begin the color selection process for the Connecticut Avenue Duplex project. You might recall we’re giving a rancher a Venice Beach bungalow inspired facelift. I knew I wanted to go dark because the trim work and arbor we’re adding to the front will really stand out on the dark house. Set that dark house and white trim up with some more green in the landscape and maybe a white flower here and there and we’ll have a solid outcome.

Here are the lead off colors (all Benjamin Moore),

West Conn color samples

In this image, we’re looking at these colors in the harsh morning sun in a spot on the house that gets the most direct light. The reason I put the samples up here is to ensure that I choose a color that has enough substance to stand up to direct sun exposure. I’m looking for a charcoal that has a navy cast at times. So far, French Beret is out. What’s your feeling here?

 

Considering a Kilim Covered Custom Sofa

by Betsy Moyer on July 17, 2014, no comments

So, I lost the Topanga Mountain Getaway of my dreams, but that hasn’t slowed me down from decorating it in my head after all. I was trying to envision the perfect sofa for that space. When all of this just suddenly developed within me.

Last night watching Orphan Black, the bohemian style of Sarah Manning’s foster home made me wanty. It’s a warm cozy space that really does make you feel like you are home… it’s your mom’s or maybe even your grandma’s place. It’s inviting, your childhood collection of journals are upstairs in the attic ready for your trip down memory lane, and there is some sweet mint tea and buttermilk biscuits already out on the counter waiting for you. You can see yourself disrupt the dust in the air as you pass through the sunshine that pours through the old sheer curtains.

You fall onto the traditional sofa and think to yourself about how chic it would look in a modern context. You start re-upholstering it in your head, and then placing into your fantasy Topanga Canyon Cabin. It looks something like this.

Custom Sofa Dreaming Kilim Covered Couch The Estate of ThingsWilloughby Sofa from Anthropologie  I  Oscar Sofa from SCP in the UK  I  Thomas Sofa by Jaxon Home
No source on that Kilim Covered ditty, so I’m thinkin custom.

So, now I must have. It’s just the perfect vibe for my getaway dreams. One of the many reasons why I have fallen for Topanga so hard, is because it reminds me so much of North Carolina, my home. So, a cozy cabiny living room with warm wooden tones and a kilim covered couch speaks perfectly to my deep desires while paying homage to the legacy of Topanga hippie culture. This is the sofa shape that I have my eye on.

Wonder if the dude would shake his head or if he’d be into it?

UPDATE: The dude just hit me up with a still from Orphan Black. There is the sofa that inspired me! <3 <3 <3

orphan-black1 kilim covered sofa

 

Recessed Lights No More

by Sarah on July 16, 2014, 2 comments

For a while now I’ve been thinking very seriously about this whole not using recessed can lighting in kitchens and baths. Some designers utilize it with more frequency. I’d like to attempt it but the right opportunity hasn’t presented itself yet.

Here’s a little exercise–go in to your kitchen, if you have recessed lighting in the ceiling, imagine they are all small flushmount fixtures.

It is in the numbers and the scale but the trickiest part I think is getting all of those smaller fixtures to make sense with pendants over an island. Things could get busy in a hurry.

Have you put any consideration in to this course of action?
light Gambrel
Really simple enameled base with a retro bulb,
light edison bulb
light robin bell kitchen
pendant heavy in a beautiful white kitchen,
light pendants2
Food 52 apartment kitchen reno on a budget,
light food 52
light CA ranch
light galley
light bilhuber
light scheerer bath
light pendants
light o'brien
light mark sikes
light this is 40 set
all images via Pinterest

 

Best Neutral Paint Colors

by Sarah on July 14, 2014, one comment

If you paint enough rooms, you’ll have the fan decks memorized and you’ll have a select group of colors that almost always work. Your go-to paint colors. I’m pretty close to committing the entire Benjamin Moore Classic Colors fan deck to memory but I also have a few colors that I always try first because they look great in most settings.

grout paint sample side2sampling exterior colors at Grout Cottage project

I like complicated colors that don’t read clearly one way or another, is it blue, green or gray—it appears slightly blue in the daylight and entirely gray at night. Choosing paint colors is pretty challenging, it’s a sampling and trial and error based process– like when I painted the same house three times (not recommended). Exterior painting is trickier than interior in my opinion because so much of the house’s identity rests on the colors.

To make the selection process a little less of a guessing game I’ve got a set of go-to neutral paint colors. This particular set contains all Benjamin Moore colors.

Best Neutral Paint

 

Paper White OC-55

This is a great subtle gray. If you need just a hint of gray, this is your color. It’s crisp and it can go modern or cottage.

paint paper white

Simply White OC-117

For the last year or so I’ve been steadily using Simply White for all my trim, cabinetry and millwork. It’s a relatively warm white but remains pretty crisp because the yellow tone isn’t overdone. It plays well every time even with walls that are painted white. I apply it in satin but I’m sure it’s great glossy.

 

Apt A Living Rm Trim Detail

Trim detail at the Grout Cottage

Suzy Dressing Room cabinet

Dressing room cabinet detail at friend’s Master Bedroom project

Moonshine OC-56

This is a warm gray that in the evenings when subjected to only interior light doesn’t turn lilac. I commonly use it in living areas and bedrooms but it will work anywhere.

paint moonshine YHL

White Dove OC-17

I’ve painted both kitchens and baths White Dove. It’s an almost infallible warm white that works well on millwork and cabinetry and makes for the perfect wall color for those white kitchens that we all love.

paint white dove

Stonington Gray HC-170

If you’re looking for a cooler, more traditional gray that stays consistent throughout the day and night, this gray is a good option. I’ve only used this particular gray in living areas.

Indiana living room after

Finished living room at Indiana Project

Healing Aloe 1562

Healing Aloe lives in that uncertain mix of blue, gray and green. It can go any of those three directions depending on the amount of light in the room. But no matter which direction it turns it always looks great. Although I commonly use it in bathrooms, it worked out surprisingly well in the dining room at the Connecticut house.

paint healing aloe

 Images in this post via The Estate of Things or Pinterest

 

 

 

HeffeHouse Coffee Table Solution

by Betsy Moyer on July 11, 2014, 4 comments

It’s done finally! We DIY’ed it.

DIY Coffee Table The Estate of Things 2

You may recall that Sarah did me a solid and helped to point me in the right direction. We knew that we needed something a bit more airy than the previous chunk of veneer that was in the room. Heffe and I agreed that our favorites were IN ORER, 1, 5 and 9.

Betsy's Coffee Table

We loved 9. So, with it as inspiration, we set out to design and build our own. I got it into my head that I wanted a worn weathered look, but short of finding the perfect amount of 2x2s in the wild, or burying them out in some sunny backyard for 23 years I was going to have fake it. We picked out the woods and the dude made me do all of the hard work like routing and sanding. (It was actually a really easy job.)

DIY Coffee Table The Estate of Things

I used a weathered oak stain made by MinWax, but only after taking a nod from the awesomest show Salvage Dogs and first torching it. That part was wicked fun. We picked out a little plumber’s torch, Heffe nerded over all of the options, and finally decided upon a little propane fueled flame thrower that would do the job just fine. It was $25 and it’s a pyromaniac’s dream come true. We will not let the little boy of the household anywhere near it.

DIY Coffee Table The Estate of Things 3

While we intended to build a top too, but I fell in love with the glass top so that we can look down into our table and enjoy our torch job! I was so pleased that after we set it up in the living room, we took a walk to the grocery store and I suggested to Heffe that we bring it with us… cause I wasn’t done simply staring at it. That, my friends, is the weird karmic power of accomplishment that DIY induces. It’s practically euphoric.

Follow along with #HeffeHouse journey via Instagram: