When The Mister and I were home-searching a few years back, the biggest driver was location. The Mister wanted it far enough outside of town to get a little acreage, while I needed it to be close enough to major freeways to commute in a reasonable amount of time. There was also a budget to consider.
The end result was a 1976 ranch-style slump block home on an acre of land, backing up against a dry wash. The area was old enough that there were good-sized trees (one of which we sadly had to cut down due to an incurable infestation) which, along with the dry wash, offered a measure of privacy you don’t often get in the flat desert environment. The freeway was less than two miles from the house.
We purchased the house directly from the original owner/builders — a retired couple who were moving to Oregon to be closer to family. I mentioned it had been built in 1976? I don’t believe it had been redecorated since. I’ve been attempting to update the look since we moved in. Unfortunately, both time and money are at a premium so it’s a slow slog.
I mentioned last week that I was inspired to paint the living room as a result of reading Home Sweet Maison. The drab beige walls, dark faux wood blinds and weird burnt orange accents were so ’70s, depressing and unappealing. The situation was exacerbated by our terrible thrift store furniture. While we eventually saved up for an attractive leather sofa — so long, futon! — even with that improvement I hated looking at the room, much less using it. Home Sweet Maison was just the kick in the butt I needed to do something about it.
I was hesitant about painting the faux rock paneling because it was so slick, so I first sanded it lightly with coarse sandpaper, then primed it before painting. That seems to have worked well.
Of course, once I painted, I wanted to give the room a little bit of finishing to make it feel more cozy and homey. Taking inspiration from the Hyyge approach, I added in a soft fur throw and some woven textured throw pillows on the sofa, soft linen drapes — goodbye, crappy mini blinds! — and a rug to anchor the room.
While it still needs some final touches like styling the mantle, I am absolutely thrilled with the results and can’t wait to show The Mister. I tend to do these major projects while he’s traveling — it keeps me busy so I don’t miss him as much (awwwwww….) and it’s a fun surprise for when he returns.