March 28, 2013

Decorating Merry-Go-Round

I have re-arranged and re-decorated my living room *yet* again, in pursuit of a fun, happy, lively room that is easy living but contains some elements of high design.  I spent several weeks months scouring stores, catalogs, and the web, trying to find the perfect curtains to hang in my living room.  I wanted something colorful, bold, and beautiful... but also something that was durable and mostly cat-hair resistant.  I was looking for pre-made curtains at first, then after consulting my mom (a fabulous seamstress) I determined that the best way to get what I wanted was to make it custom.  Bah.   I am not much for sewing, although I enjoy the occasional home project... and curtains were outside of my comfort zone for sure.  My mom, bless her heart, offered to help with the planning and sewing, so I was off on my hunt again - this time looking for the perfect fabric.  During my pursuit I came across the wide world of indoor-outdoor fabrics - they're sun-fade resistant, they're generally made of polyester (so low-static); they come in a wide range of patterns and colors.  I swear I thought I hit the home decor jackpot!!  And then it came time to order said fabric.  You would have thought I was trying to purchase a unicorn, the way that I kept getting shut down on fabric websites... my local fabric store carried a nice selection of patterns, but nothing that really caught my eye.  I found a few online-only vendors who carried a pattern that I loved:

and happily placed an order at the vendor with the lowest price per yard. A few days later,  I was sadly notified that the fabric was out of stock, and they didn't know when they'd get more in... I was devastated!!   I placed an order with the next-lowest-priced vendor... out of stock there, too... It was a conspiracy created to keep me from ordering this fabric, let me tell you!

Then, as I was trolling the web, feverishly looking for "my" fabric, I found another pattern that caught my eye.  I figured it was a fluke - that the colors would be off, that the pattern would be too small... something was going to be wrong.  But I took a leap of faith, tapped my credit card number into the order form, and crossed my fingers and toes that this would all work out...


About a week later, I arrived home from work to find a big roll of fabric at my doorstep, all bundled nice and neat in a box, in some bubble wrap, around a bolt... it was packaged so well that I thought I'd never get to see it!   And then I got past the bubble wrap and plastic sleeve, and was horrified to learn that they'd wrapped the plain white lining fabric on the OUTSIDE of the bolt, leaving me with fourteen yards of fabric to transfer from one roll to another.....

You remember that exercise that you can do with a stick, a rope, and a free weight?

(Yep, that one. I curse the sadist gym rat who came up with it...)

Wrist-rolls, I think they call this torture device?   Yeah, well try doing that with fourteen yards of 54" wide heavy polyester decorator fabric.  You'll never look at a trip to the gym the same way again.  I had forearms of steel by the time that I was done with that Herculean feat!

At last I got to the good stuff - the floral fabric I'd hedged my bets on, since it was non-returnable clearance fabric.   I unrolled a yard or two onto my dining room table... and I. LOVED. IT.  It was gorgeous!  It had all of "my" colors!  (and did I mention it was on clearance?)

My mom came over a few days later, and we held a marathon curtain-sewing in my dining room, interrupted only by lunch and a trip to Lowe's for some new window hardware (I needed curtain rings, then I also decided that the curtain rods I had previously were not quite substantial enough).

Here's some photos of the fruits of our labor - I think you'll find that this is a little more punchy and fun than the last rendition of the living room!  I've also included some photos of new artwork that I created from some vacation photos I shot in Nashville last fall...  Love how those turned out!!

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