Since we’ve moved into the new house, we’ve been redecorating here and there. It’s a one-room-one-piece-at-a-time process, but it’s always fun to take a space and make it new.
Hi, my name is Jolie, and I’m a closet interior design nerd.
When I was a little girl, I had a fabulous little girl bedroom. It was wall-to-wall Strawberry Shortcake, because I loved Strawberry Shortcake. Except that I hated pink. I’ll give you three guesses as to how much fun it was for my mom to find Strawberry Shortcake stuff for a little girl that wasn’t predominantly pink.
When my Gran got wind of this dilemma, she intervened. She and my mom started making stuff for my bedroom instead of buying the commercial bedding and the like.
I had a bedspread, pillows, curtains, the whole nine yards, and every bit of it was SS in theme. The bedspread was the only pink in the room, though. The curtains were long flowing expanses of bright red strawberries. And being the baby princess that I was, I decided they needed to be edged in lace. My mother, being the indulgent sort with her first daughter (prodded on by Gran, who never had a daughter and so worked out all of her latent princess training talents on me) took me shopping for lace.
Oh, did I find my lace.
I fell head over heels in love with yards of 3″wide, snowy white eyelet lace that was handmade in some quaint, rustic French village.
It was also $45 a yard. In the early 1980s.
I’ll spare you the details, but I will tell you that, to this day, my mother has yet to let me live down the fact that she shelled out more than $300 for lace to edge my strawberry curtains. (It’s been almost 30 years.)
Not much has changed since then.
When we went house-shopping the first time, a year ago, Rhett decided that I needed an office. Since I work from home often (even then) and run my family finances much the same way I would run a business – down to my filing methods – I spend a lot of time at a desk with a computer, a red pen, and a ten-key. He has kept that opinion throughout all the chaos.
Now that we’re here, and are going to be here for a significant amount of time, he has assigned the third bedroom of the house to this purpose. I have been deposited, along with my command center, into a room that used to belong to a little boy. I know it was a little boy because I know what the paint on the wall looks like.
The room needs to be painted, is where I’m going with this.
But because I’m a decor nerd, I can’t just slap up the paint, throw up pictures on the wall, and call it a day. No, first I have to pick a style. Which I’ve done, finally, as of last night.
Fortunately, we have similar tastes when it comes to decorating the main part of the house – most everything is warm earthtone base colors with bright flashes of accents. My accents run to red; Rhett’s run to blue. Nothing there that can’t work together.
But I have been informed that the office needs to be different. It needs to be all Jolie, all the time. I have also been informed that my first pair of toe shoes should be hanging on the wall in there. [edited for inappropriate exmarital referential content]
It’s been 12 years since I lived in a space that was just mine, in any part just mine.
Figuring out what to do with the office, in other words, has been a pain in my ass.
I hit on it last night, though.
I’m going to make a femme retreat for myself.
I found a gorgeous pearl grey paint that I’m going to put on the walls. I’ll use that as a jumping off point for a vintage Hollywood feeling. Dark furniture, silver and crystal and fringe lamps and accessories. The local Mormon-owned decorating crap emporium has a series of Couture cover prints from the 1950s that are mostly black with pops of lipstick-red, as well as an awesome series of the same era of starlet photography from the Victoria and Albert museum in England. (That maybe should be Albert and Victoria; I never can remember.)
Mostly, it will be pearl grey and white everywhere, with Hollywood Regency accents (not too much froufrou, but some), splashes of lipstick red, and maybe a sassy zebra-print rug on the floor. I’ll be spending some time at garage sales and thrift shops, picking up stuff like Grandma’s old Baroque-style dressing mirror to repurpose. My first two expenditures, though, will be the paint and the artwork – just so that while I’m piecing together the rest, the bones are in place.
I’m very excited about this.
I can’t imagine how I can not be inspired to write in a space created around classic images of the ultimate femme heydey.
Classic femininity, maybe just a little over the top, with a twist. Yeah, I think that sounds like me. Just like good old Strawberry Shortcake.