Our tash-tastic foyer

Those of you who know Grimbil know that he loves his facial hair. He regularly participates in various moustache and beard contests. His latest was a pro-longed Movember, in which he grew a very respectable handlebar tash.


So, when searching for a way to add some personality to our foyer, moustaches seemed an obvious theme.  We started with what we are calling the Tash-mat

Then, in my quest for the perfect curtains for to hide our messy shelves, I found this geometric-moustache- trellis pattern.

The drycleaners stitched it up into curtains

And voila, our tash-tacular foyer!


And you thought we were done with curtains….

Ha! Here at Old Glory we (I mean yours truly) are never done obsessing about random house details. Be glad I didn’t regale you with how perfectly our new bath mat matches the color scheme in the loo.

So, a while ago Grimbil fitted some shelves above the washer and dryer in our foyer. These shelves go through varying degrees of organization, usually more on the horribly messy end of the spectrum. For a while we’ve been talking about putting up some curtains to hide the shelves.

20130217-232353.jpgThe foyer shelves on a good day

So, this weekend’s obsession was finding the exactly perfect fabric for the foyer shelves. How obsessed can we be? Oh honey.

Hours spent trying to find **anywhere** online in the UK that sells good quatrefoil fabric. By good I mean something like this:

Not something like this:

But clearly I don’t know the right websites. Or search terms. So, cue the last resort: actually going in person and physically looking for some good fabric. It didn’t even have to be quatrefoil, just something clean and modern and graphic.

But no joy.

So, I turned to Spoonflower, a website that has been taunting me. It’s basically Etsy specifically for fabrics and wallpaper. The bummer is that it’s based in the US, so hello extra shipping charges. But oh the awesome fabrics. Hello quatrefoil-ish mustaches!


After: the curtains

A year ago or so,  I posted our dilemma of what to do about curtains for the living room.  Then we got sidetracked with the upstairs renovations.  Then in August I mentioned that we were trying to figure out the curtains in the guest bedroom.  Well, I’m happy to report that our curtain cliffhangers are both now resolved.

We finally went for some cream curtains in the living room. I like that they have a very subtle stripe for a bit of texture.

The room feels softer, warmer, and more finished, but the curtains don’t compete for attention versus the art and antiques in the room.  We’re really pleased with how well they turned out.


In the bedroom we ended up going with the Meander pattern for the roman blind. The brighter green colors pick up the green in the artwork, and the brown picks up the brown stripe in the bedspread.

This also means the guest bedroom is almost finished — hopefully I’ll be able to post an After for that room in the next month or so!


Decisions decisions: curtains

Happy new year! I know, I know, we owe you several posts about the holidays but right now I’m fixated on curtains.

Our naked doors

For about a year we’ve been meaning to get curtains for our bifold doors, for privacy, warmth, and to “soften” the space. I’ve also noticed that our 4-month-old couch has started to fade, which has us worried for the paintings and rugs. Who says there is no sun in England?

The first thing to figure out was color/ pattern. We have a gray couch and floor, so I thought some subtle color on the curtains would be good. Perhaps a shade of blue to go with the carpet? But the wrong blue would blend too much with the gray. Maybe a red? But that might be too much. And should the pattern be large since its a lot of wall to cover, or would that be overbearing?

I love the quatrefoil pattern on these curtains, but I’m not sure I’d love 10+ feet of it

Recognising that I was talking myself out of every idea, I decided to see what the members of Houzz.com thought. If you are ever looking for interior design ideas Houzz is a great place to go. They also have a Design Dilemmas section for people who are floundering like me.

I posted the top picture (above) of our living room and asked for advice on curtain colors and styles. Initially I got more advice on how mismatched our living room is and how we should remove everything but the couch, floor, and bifold doors. * sigh* But after I clarified which pieces of furniture are leaving (coffee table and end table), showed them the big picture view of the open plan, and explained that we are trying to blend our art/ Persian carpets/ antique furniture/ ethnic knickknacks/ modern furniture, I finally started getting helpful advice. There is nothing like wading through a bunch of advice that is wrong for you to help identify the advice that is right for you.

So what was the advice? That since we have a small space, plain curtains are best. But more
importantly, our art/rugs etc should be the focal point of each room. Who notices curtains when there are beautiful paintings and interesting artefacts scattered around? Plain curtains it is!

regenerative nest contemporary bedroom
Nice plain curtains would blend in to the background while still adding privacy and “softness” to the space 

I’ve always known that we have the makings of an awesomely decorated house, but I’ve let myself get sidetracked with making sure the colors relate to each other, and other rules of design, that I’ve forgotten the most important rules of design: your space should reflect your taste and personality, and the best way to see what works is to have fun trying out new combinations. So hello gallery wall over the sofa and around the tv. And I think it’s time to unpack that box of photos and knickknacks that has been languishing in the attic. Its definitely time for our house to start feeling like us.

Anthropologie inspired loft eclectic bedroom

Here’s an example of a gallery wall (ie, a bunch of things hung together)