Sunday, June 07, 2009

Home Projects - The Side Hallway.

For whatever reason, our side hallway has become the door of choice we use to enter and exit our house. For such a narrow and confined space, it is utilized for all manner of things apart from entering and exiting.

It's where everyone leaves their shoes, wipes their feet, dumps their backpacks, purses, briefcases, junk. It's where we recycle, store Oscar's walking bag ...

and we hug there too.

I've always disliked this hallway. It's too narrow, too bright white. It has such a high traffic of little hands smeared all over the place. Little hands and little paw prints everywhere. It's also right off the kitchen, so over the years, cooking grease and smoke have left their mark on the walls too. When we first moved here, I did a major scrubdown, and I still try to keep it clean... but after four years, it was time for a change. This year I decided to do something about it.

I had a vision in mind. First, of course - the paint. Golden straw or Straw? In other words, yellow ... or yellow? This is the first time I've ever actively sought out a color based on reading about it. Awhile back, I read an article in the Times, in the "Habitats" column, that described this color in one of the apartments it featured. I can't ever recall seeing such detail paid to a color choice, as the writer did here. So, I was intrigued. I tracked the color down at our local hardware store.

And I chose something else.


But I did get to know our local hardware guys very well. And I also learned that his daughter used this very color on her dining room walls. "Golden Straw. "

So pretty. So yellow.

The off to do what I do best. Paint. Taped and ready for the prime.

I left the math and sketching to Jeff. I needed to find some seating/storage items to fit the tight corners.

Voila. The finished product. I'm happy that this project involved mostly repurposed items from the house. The runner, we've always had. The artwork and mirrors - same thing, just from other parts of the house. The cubby has been in my closet for several years now. Time to donate it to the greater good.

I love these keys. I bought them in Pittsburgh when I went to visit my brother and his wife months ago. I thought I'd use them to frame the upper plank wall of a door, but that didn't work out. Instead, I decided that I'd use the keys to highlight the walls' narrow space directionally.

The seating was a big thing. It's odd to have an Ottoman in your hallway, I suppose, but the monkeys now have a place to sit and wait their turns for the bathroom. That's the door over there.

I was getting tired of the rush and the fist fights breaking out, to be the "first one to use the potty!" Now, whoever gets there second has a place to wait in comfort. The Ottoman was from Bed, Bath and Beyond and actually came as a set of two.

Getting them to leave the keys alone will be another battle to add to my daily list of chores. But I figure, the first time one of the keys comes crashing down on them, they'll learn their lesson fast.

"A place for everything; and everything in its place."

Hence - the cubby for shoes, and space for backpacks and my purse. Ninety-nine percent of this cubby space is occupied with the kids' shoes. I have one pair of sneakers there, and poor Jeff... I don't know where he's hiding his shoes.

I kept a recycling bin close by, since this hallway is right by our kitchen. It's smaller than our old bin, which mean emptying it out more frequently - but that's a good thing too.

And we can now hang our favorite art gallery-style. My sister-in-law, Dallice, took these pictures for us. Doesn't she have a great eye?

One of my favorite places in the world - Nantucket .

One project down for the summer, and another one in progress. All told, I have three small ones on deck. Stay tuned!
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