The guest bedroom has been papered in Bird and Thistle by Brunshwig & Fils, and I’m excited that the entire place is coming together as planned and on schedule.
As a reminder, this is where we started:
And, this is where we are today!
I am thrilled with the results. Walter’s team at Tapia’s Works in Chicago did a great job installing this paper with no waste. We completed this entire job with our budgeted paper and will use the remaining strips to cover wooden tissue boxes (craft project!). The room is painted in Farrow & Ball Wimborne White. The original moldings and doors are spray finished. The doorknobs are antique brass.
The build-in bookcase is great, but it wasn’t finished particularly well. The middle strips should be covered with molding, which we will add.
The den is draped in a lovely shade of Wimborne White paint. Walter and his team from Tapia’s Works carefully painted the detailed mantle, trim and ceiling. The den is now ready for a coat of Railings which will be a dramatic update for this space and make it a super cozy place to hang out.
I’m excited about this room because it will be painted Railings, a softer alternative to black. You may remember what the room looked like before we got started. The brick on the fireplace was the inspiration for the wall color.
It is funny to me that the previous owner painted around the mirror, but not underneath it. The mirror was purchased from the prior owner for $500 and will be re-hung once the painting is finished.
I am excited to move into an era of paint that is NOT gray. I am tired of the gray paint that I have been enjoying for the last 10 years (aren’t you?!).
The finish of Wimborne White on the trim is Estate Eggshell and the walls will be painted Estate Emulsion, a chalky finish.
One of the neighboring units did restore their mantle to original wood and it was gorgeous, but out of budget (and time!) for us to restore, so we have kept with white paint and will enjoy the character with fireside drinks with family and friends!
The guest bedroom, along with the rest of the house, is getting a fresh coat of paint, starting with the molding. Of course, all of the molding and ceilings will be painted Farrow & Ball Wimborne White. We chose Wimborne White because it is beautifully suited to the warm eastern exposure of the home. All of the painting and wallpaper hanging is the work of Walter from Tapia’s Works, and his team. As you can tell from the photographs, Walter and his team have done an exceptional job prepping the space and protecting all surfaces.
I was a bit skeptical that the Farrow & Ball finish was truly superior to the less expensive paint options, but as many would agree, it is. There is a beautiful texture to the paint and depth of color that was very noticeable to me, particularly after looking at the shiny paint that had been applied so poorly prior. For a historical home like this, I wanted the paint to be perfect and it is looking great so far.
One of the best tips I received while planning out the paint colors and wallpapers was to keep the window boxes consistently painted white, including the empty box below. The molding was a unique challenge that this tip solves nicely for. Each of the windows will be framed out as its own piece, with white trim and box underneath. Wallpaper will flank each side.
The window treatment will likely be a mix of natural grass and custom curtains, made from Bird & Thistle fabric to match the wallpaper. I have been keeping an eye out for fabric on Ebay and Chairish that is discounted and am expecting I will find something over time.
The built-ins were not wood, so they will not be painted. Instead, the shelves will be finished with wood moldings on the face of the bookcase and filled with “things”.
It is exciting to see the painting come together so quickly and the finishing being done so well by Tapia’s Works, who have been great to work with on this project.
The Gucci wallpaper came today and I’m impressed. The paper came in this gorgeous gift box tied with a bow! I took a risk on this paper without seeing it in person first, but was drawn to the pattern which was inspired by vintage fabric and think that the cream backdrop with red flowers pairs nicely with the white paint throughout the adjoining rooms and the red stone that I am considering for the kitchen.
The paper inside was just as beautiful and was carefully wrapped and labeled. The texture is woven and has a nice feel and the print is fine and clear. My only complaint would be that the cream is a slightly more yellow tone than the online photograph led me to expect, but I did compare it to the white paint swatch and it does work, which made me less worried.
The coverage of this roll is not insignificant – it is 33 feet long and 3.5 feet wide, or, 115.5 square feet of coverage. It is $190 per roll and can be found here.
The master bathroom demo is underway and all floors and the privacy wall have been removed. The master bathroom previously had hex tiles and a very traditional look and feel with 1930’s style fixtures that will be kept.
All fixtures will be replaced with Waterworks unlacquered brass Highgate and Easton Classic fixtures.
The hand shower will be removed and an in-wall shower head will be added. The fixtures have been delivered as we wait for the ceramic trim and baseboards to arrive with medicine cabinets, lighting, ceiling fan and geometric floor design to be ordered.
We are planning to paper the guest bedroom in Brunschwig & Fils “Bird and Thistle” wallpaper in the Green colorway. We removed a bookcase from this room and it is looking less than perfect these days with lots of color patches.
I’m working on placing an order for this paper so we can be ready for Walter to install in the coming months. As a reminder, we are working on the guest room, highlighted below.
I have found a couple of different resources for estimating the number of rolls needed. The bookcase helps us out because we do not need to paper the majority of that wall. I checked Lowe’s = 6 rolls. I checked Amara Living = 6 rolls. I checked Omni Calculator (this site has a calculator for everything!) = 6 rolls. Three for three! We will go with 6 rolls and get this order placed.
The kitchen of this apartment is in great condition, but feels a bit dated. That being said, so many elements of this kitchen are timeless, so I want to preserve the beautiful Bolhuis cabinets, the Sub Zero and Miele appliances and the Perrin and Rowe hardware while giving the kitchen a bit of a lift.
Here is a reminder of what the kitchen looked like:
Here is a photo of what the kitchen looked like this morning:
In person, and somewhat illustrated by the non wide-lens camera, the space is a bit cramped. The area between the hanging cabinets and the sink is only the width of a four burner stove. I want to visually open this space up by removing the hanging glass cabinets.
Of course my biggest mistake was not taking more “before” photos, but everything moved quickly once the work got started! My dad is helping me here! He built the house that I grew up in, laid all the floors and spun every spindle by hand.
Part of the challenge of the hanging cabinets is that they took up a lot of counter space. If you refer back to the first photograph you can see that 1/3 of the counter space was monopolized by the base of the cabinet. At the base was a hollow opening that included an electrical strip. The opening was suited for storing breads, but a microwave would not fit.
First, we removed all cabinet doors and shelves. Since these cabinets were more decorative, and less everyday, the hardware was in perfect shape. We will replace the more tired hardware in other areas of the kitchen with these. This will save money since each of these knobs cost $45.
Next, my dad removed all of the small lights running through the cabinets. We tossed the lights (one already had broken glass) and kept some of the electrical elements for use on other projects.
We removed the crown molding around the center cabinet in order to drop it down. The molding was an interesting recovery for two reasons. First, it can be re-used to patch now remaining gaps from the hanging cabinets. Second, it appears as if each of these little teeth were individually nailed to the molding (wow! so much work!).
This project took almost a whole day, but it made a big difference. We successfully removed all the hanging cabinets and opened up the kitchen.
The only thing we changed was removing the hanging cabinets, and the kitchen looks dramatically different. The work that remains includes: replacing any tired door hardware with the knobs that we retrieved from the glass cabinets, professionally re-painting the kitchen cabinets, updating the backsplash and countertops and incorporating the La Voliere chandelier so we can eat breakfast with the birds!
I discovered high shine “Wendy’s Green” paint from Farrow & Ball while searching for the perfect olive paint. The store actually does not carry a true olive paint but good news!, the custom mixed Wendy’s Green is available, with a 2 gallon minimum. This is the same green that designer Wendy Labrum used at the 2017 Lake Forest, IL Design & Garden Showhouse. I love it!
Perhaps anyone who has house hunted has found the “almost perfect” house before finding “the one”.
We each found our own “perfect” house but unfortunately it was not the same house, so we went with neither and had to move on. However, from time to time i still think of this one…
This house was even better in person and I loved every detail. It was impeccably clean and looked like it came straight from Architectural Digest.
The molding was fresh and new (no cakey old paint) and the cream walls were the perfect backdrop for art. There was an incredible flat marble fireplace that was the perfect touch of modern for the space.
The dining room windows looked out on Lincoln Park and I loved the books and beams.
The back of the house didn’t have the best view, but that was the only slight downside that I saw.