A Room in Review: Kathie’s Living Room
I’m not one to ever be afraid of colour. The colours of this room were taken from the Renee McIntosh wallpaper that was gifted to me by a friend. The wallpaper is a hand printed Bradbury & Bradbury paper that I love. Once the colours were pulled out of the wallpaper and I knew I was going to use them, my best friend saw the colours and thought I was nuts. “Kathie this is orange!!” Didn’t stop me though. McIntosh is classic!
The focal point of the room is the fireplace. It just so happened that I had purchased a fireplace over-mantle at the Aberfoyle Flea Market a few years prior to decorating this room for JUST such an occasion. I then had a very talented carpenter, David Bisch, build the mantle. He incorporated some details from the existing over-mantle and masterfully stained it to match.
Drapery is a big part of what I do in our shop. In this room I used a silk stripe that matched the wallpaper I used. The dark bronze curtain rods and gold rings (second hand and spray painted gold) were inspired by decorator Charles Faudree.
The light fixture was an auction find. I brought out the details on this piece with a bit of gold gilder’s paste when I was walking around the house one day with an open jar of it in search of my next victim.
The furniture in the room is either a piece we’ve had for 30 years since John and I were married, or a second hand treasure. Some of the pieces have been overhauled. The sofa is a new introduction to the room. This beautiful Italian sofa showed up at our shop when someone said it was too pretty to throw away and they thought we might like it. Well we loved it! So it got painted and reupholstered by Don’s Upholstery and now it lives with us.
I painted the frame of the sofa in Annie Sloan’s Primer Red and then gold leafed the whole frame. Then used some greeny and creamy Chalk Paint colours to paint over the gold, leaving some gold and a bit of Primer Red poking through. It was finished off with some clear and dark wax, and then we sent it over to Don! We chose a green J.F. Fabrics velvet to recover it with. Originally the sofa had three cushions but we went with one long cushion instead.
The chair-and-a-half, or the “big butt” chair, was purchased at Molly’s Back Porch on Ottawa Street in Hamilton. The upholstery on this chair worked in the room as it was despite our wild colour scheme. We had the same upholstery luck with the silk chair that sits by the secretary desk.
For this room I painted a couple replicas of John Waterhouse paintings. The Lady of Shallot is one of my favourite paintings of all time so I just had to try my hand at it. I think those beautiful and dramatic portraits add something special to the room.
Photos to caption:
Gucci deer cups that were found for cheap in an antique shop . Much later I realized they were Gucci Piano that we’ve had since before we had a house to put it in. Everyone in our family is musical except for me!