new desks!

We have made good progress painting the rooms in our house.  The blue room, aka George (as in Weasley*), the room formerly known as the dining room, is pretty much done.  Robert really worked hard on the dark blue below the chair rail, which required several coats for good coverage.  He struggled with the chair rail and the painter’s tape.  I painted the light blue, but he did most of the rest, with me as occasional helper, because he has higher standards and motivation for painting than I do.

We shopped at various places for desks, as this room will be the kids’ office, and finally settled on the Dolce desks on the Target website.  They arrived a day before the estimated earliest shipping date, and we’re very happy with their sturdiness and design.  The color looks more cherry than we expected based on the word “walnut” in their name, but we’re okay with that.  They were simple to put together too.  We just had to screw on the legs to the already constructed tabletops, and screw the top piece to the already constructed columns of the hutch.  Sometimes when I’m putting together furniture like this I wonder what furniture builders of a hundred or two hundred years ago would think.  We are going to let the kids paint the Ikea chairs Robert got last Christmas (you can see one in the photo) to personalize them and add a fun touch to the room.

The blue colors are called Madras (light blue) and Planetarium, and we got them at Home Depot.

*Note on why “George”: Several months ago, during a discussion about the functions we want each of our rooms to serve, we decided this room would not be a dining room anymore.  And the room across the foyer, labeled “living room” on the house floor plans, has had a bit of an identity crisis for the last several years, serving as a library and music room and sometimes just being ignored. The design of the house means we rarely pass the room, and it’s just small and somewhat closed off from the rest of the house.  Anyway, so when we wondered what to call our front rooms, I thought of the books I was immersed in this spring, and said, “How about Fred and George?”  And it stuck.  Rhiannon and Caroline don’t like it and continue using the names “library” and “dining room,” but Robert and I persisted in calling them Fred and George.  That is, until George was painted blue.  Now we more often call it The Blue Room.

We have also painted most of our family room, using the same color as the guest bathroom, the first room we painted.  It’s called manila tint, and we chose it because we wanted something reminiscent of parchment.  We going for a Leonardo DaVinci feel.  (Do you think it would be cool to have Vitruvian man above the mantle??  I’m ambivalent!)  However, the yellow comes out much more than the manila in this paint.  It’s almost awful in the guest bathroom, with it being so small and so lit with incandescent bulbs.  Fortunately, it just looks cheerful in the family room and we’re very happy with it.  Who knows how much of the happiness comes from the color and how much is from the perfect expanse of color no longer interrupted by scribbles and dinginess.  Painting truly is a fast easy way to hugely improve the look of a room!

The family room (always called that; no name issues here!) is going to have shelves and cabinets for storing games, learning manipulatives, books, etc., the table you can barely see in the photo, and some kind of loveseat or big comfy chairs.  We plan to use the fireplace, something we’ve only done two or three times in the eleven years we have lived here because most of the time it has been covered by plexiglass and sometimes even furniture.

Stay tuned to see the transformation of the next room on our list, Fred, formerly known as the library:

We’re considering dark berry or wine red colors.  The piano is staying there because it’s the only good spot for it in the house, but most or all of the bookcases are being moved out, and we’re going to get better seating and hang a t.v. on the wall.  So it’s kind of becoming a music/media room.  We’re still calling it Fred.  🙂

By the way, if you’d like to get your bearings, imagine you’re standing where I was as I took the above photo.  The front door is immediately to my right, the hall to the family room is on my left, and the Blue Room is behind me.  I noticed last week that without thinking about it we have created a primary palette of sorts visible from the front door.  If you stand with your back against the front door, after all three rooms are painted (assuming we don’t change our mind about the color of Fred), you will see blue on your left, yellow straight ahead, and red on the right!  They’re not bright primary shades though, so I think it will look good.  And we’re painting all the woodwork in the house the same as in the Blue Room, a color called “Root Beer.”

This post took much longer than I intended.  Now I’m going to go help Robert install the new light fixture we got for the Blue Room.



  1. I enjoyed reading about allyour room transformations, colors, furniture, and how the kids will gt to decorate their own chairs! I also look forward to see the “after” pictures – when each room is done, put back together, and being used! Good luck! Looks and sounds like fun!


  2. Just saw this…and I really like the color in the family room. It looks so nice and I am all for the “liberation” of the fireplace! (We use ours quite a bit!) Congratulations for the new look!


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