I can hardly believe it, but next spring we will hit our ten-year anniversary as homeowners. I can't believe we've lived here for that long! This is the longest I've ever lived somewhere...no wonder I've been feeling antsy lately!
When we bought our house, it was ug-LY. Seriously -- one of these days I need to find and scan some of the pictures we took on closing day. The living room had plastic "wood" and "stone" paneling on the walls; the kitchen was all dirty 1950s cabinets with 1970s linoleum; the bedrooms each had technicolor carpeting and truly bizarre trim colors that did not at all match the carpets (mustard yellow in one room, teal in another...). The bathroom wallpaper was, I kid you not, reflective. It was hideous. We're convinced that all those cosmetic issues are why no one else bought the house!
I was unemployed at the time -- it was just before I started library school -- and because we were living with Jim's mom while we househunted, we were lucky enough to have the luxury of doing a lot of renovations before we moved in, rather than having to work around furniture and boxes and everything. It took a month of hard work, but among other things we ripped out the carpets (in all but the living room) and refinished the hardwood floors; stripped and painted the kitchen cabinets; replaced the kitchen sink and countertop; replaced doors and light fixtures and switches and outlets; and painted every surface in the entire house.
Ten years on, though, everything is starting to look sort of dingy and sad and in need of some sprucing up. The living room is the worst, though. If you've seen any pictures of our house on this blog over the years, you've probably noticed our wine-red living room. It's hard to miss. But after ten years of living, it's time to go. We've managed to put a few dings in the wall while moving furniture; the painted-over wallpaper (not our fault!) on one wall started to peel at the edge, taking the paint with it; and mostly, we're just tired of it. The room is, for a living room, relatively small (about 20x13, I think) and it's north-facing, so it is DARK in here. I knew this when I chose the paint color, of course -- I deliberately chose the deep red to play up the coziness of the space. But lately, though, it's been making me feel claustrophobic. So, time for a change. Something lighter and brighter.
I think I want to go with something in the gold color family...richer than yellow, but warmer than beige. It's so hard to choose paint colors! And especially in this room, with the overwhelming RED, I feel like we're never really going to get an accurate feel for the color until it's actually painted on the wall and the red is GONE. But I've taped up the chips I picked up the other day so we can start thinking about it. Thus far, my favorites are on the top row, second and third from the left. But I'm sure I'll change my mind about a million times before actually deciding on something...and of course there's the small issue of reaching an agreement with Jim, too! We decided on the paint color for Ian's room pretty quickly and unanimously, so hopefully this will go as smoothly!
I have a mess of vacation time saved up, so I think this fall I'm going to take a few days to do this project. We also want to rip out the carpet in here and redo the floors, but that might be too much to do all at once. We'll see...