Next up on our Adventure is the Green Room. The Front Bedroom. The Turret Bedroom. All three of these names are used pretty interchangeably. The Front Bedroom, because it’s on the front of the house. The Turret Bedroom, because the turret is in it. And the Green Room because, well, this:
This was when we bought the house. I mean, the carpet was in good shape. But, it’s just so Emerald. And, since we aren’t fans of carpet, out it went! Two years ago, we had our carpet removal party, and Edgar, Brian, and Veronica knocked this room out.
And discovered sins of owner’s past….
So, maybe the carpet was a better look. Maybe not. I don’t know. But carpet is still gross.
Fast forward to today! In the ongoing quest to move out of the third floor, this room became the next candidate for a “Mini-Makeover.” For normal people, this means changing out drapes and throw pillows. For me, that mean “everything but the floors.”
It’s hard to live in a house like this and not let your mind wander to who used to live here, and what things happened in these rooms (besides ironing the hardwood). As I’ve become more and more fascinated with Victorian Architecture, the next logical thing is to learn about the how Victorians lived, because I truly think how these spaces were envisioned, should somehow naturally work there way into how we live today. I’m working my way through “Inside the Victorian Home” by Judith Flanders, and it’s fascinating. And I think I like those Victorians. Notably, for this :
The Architect said that using a bedroom for a function other than sleeping was ‘unwholesome, immoral, and contrary to the well-understood principle that every important function of life required a separate room.’
I can’t argue with that. Maybe it’s the organizer in me, but I don’t like “open concept” houses. I want each of my rooms to have a purpose. I totally get why other people want to be able to see everything from everywhere. But not me. Victorians, you win this round. Sorry, McMansions.
And apparently, people were FIESTY about this. Another great quote from the book, in discussing an old spinster, said :
It was one of the theories of her life that different rooms should be used only for the purposes for which they were intended. She never allowed pens and ink up in the bed-rooms, and had she ever heard that any guest in her house was reading in bed, she would have made an instant personal attack on that guest.
Seriously. I love the Victorian Era.
We will learn more history along the way as Judith Flanders continues to educate me. I hope you’re excited about this!
First, I wanted to say good-bye to the wallpaper. Blue Strawberries. I didn’t even know that was a thing. Most of the wallpaper was curling and coming off, so this was a necessity.
Steam it off.
The walls were coming off okay. The border at the top…. yeah. Not so much. And as much as I hate to do this, because it doesn’t seem right, I felt like I was destroying the walls for no good reason. And since the border – unlike the walls – was on really solid, I changed course, and decided I’m going to cover it up.
If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. So I made the realization that a roll of wallpaper, when turned horizontal, would make a killer border and completely cover up the current border. Done and Done.
Anaglypta, welcome. Be ready.
And then, this happened.
Words. THERE ARE WORDS UNDER THE PAPER.
What? The stairway was a floor? And a room? Goodness gracious. This house is crazy.
So, that means that when the house was apartments, THIS was a room :
My head was spinning. This changes everything. Where was the bannister? How did this function? I may be able to answer these questions, soon. I hope.
Wallpaper steaming is tedious and easy and boring to do by yourself. So I made my darling friends Jordan and Stephen come and keep me company. Here, Jordan and I show off how to smile while peeling layers off the wall.
OH MY GOSH THERE ARE MORE WORDS.
“Mike and Karen Beidler, March 1984.” The Beidler’s were the family who painstakingly took the house from apartments back to single family. I am forever grateful to them! So uncovering this was very special, though it makes my plan of painting something to reconsider. This changes everything.
Stephen said, “It’s like National Treasure in Here!”
Randy Beidler, Age 7
Larson Beidler, 10 Months
Veronica Beidler, 14 3/4
This is the BEST.
I really am not sure how I can repair the plaster and paint and not lose the writing. How big of a crime would that be? Seriously. I’m asking. I wonder if I just re-paper. Or do I document in some other way?
I wish I could be like Reese, and just nap in the middle of it instead of facing life’s hard choices.
Can we discuss how awesome the light is in this room? I mean, it’s spectacular.
The more he works on it, the more Stephen is convinced that this wall is straight out of a horror film. Me? I’m really excited by how good of shape the plaster is in.
Not bad for an afternoon.
The other two walls, I did on my own. This is the view from the turret! Isn’t it lovely? The windows need washing.
The turret still needs interior repair from when it rotted. That’s coming up soon.
Mostly done with wallpaper removal!
Here’s the plan :
- Repair the Walls
- Repair the turret
- Update the electrical and add 2 receptacles (for a total of 4)
- Trick people into coming over and moving the treadmill down and out
- Prime and Paint
- Install the Anaglypta Border
- Install a simple crown moulding and picture rail
- Replace the ceiling fan (below) with something more appropriate
- Sew drapes
- Add Artwork (a gallery feel)
- Find the perfect rug
- Scavenge for furniture
- Find or Build a set of Nightstands
- Explain to all of you why nightstands are WRONG
- Build something fun just because I can
- Hope that the bedside lamps that my mother told me she bought at an antique store work with everything else
- Finish by the end of the summer
That’s doable, right?
You know what I love about this room? That it’s not square. I love rooms that aren’t square SO MUCH.
I think this is going to be fun.
“Trick people into coming over and moving the treadmill down and out”
Also, I’m busy that day.
Crap. Who else would photo document the hilarity of it all? I NEEDED YOU!
It is incredible how much better the room looks sans carpeting and wallpaper! incredible!
Right? Also, I need lighting advice from you for a fixture for this room!
First off… I love the shape of that room. Square is boring!!
Secondly, I have to share that when I opened this post in gmail (because, yes, I have your blog set to email me new posts), it automatically added a link to the trailer for National Treasure at the bottom. And just can’t decided if that is absurdly ridiculous, or completely genius.
Well, I did put the link in the blog post, so I bet that’s why. You can call me a genius, and ridiculous. It’s okay – I own it.
In other news, that trailer is pretty awful for a movie that’s actually pretty decent.
When I removed wallpaper in my kitchen restoration, I found a list of all the family’s pets. It said:
Jodi – dog (circled with a line to the words, “the best”)
MomMom – girl
DadDad – another boy
Kathy – girl
Kristy – girl
Derick – boy
John – boy
illegible name – hamter
Fuzzy – “hampter” (this time with a ‘p’)
Joey – “giny pig”
Piglet – “giny pig”
Last name I couldn’t read, but it was a “rabbittt” with a circle and line to the words “The Best!”
When I found it, I only prayed that didn’t mean all those animals were buried inside that wall… 🙂
I ended up painting over all the names because I had to replaster the entire wall after dealing with a calcimine paint removal debacle (If you make one wish in your entire life, wish for never finding out about calcimine paint). In a closet, I found a heart painted on a wall with the initials of the original couple from 1892 (so sweet!) that I won’t paint over and bought a big gaudy frame to go around it (in the closet) so that it remains forever.
Hmmm… Turret Room? I am pretty sure you meant Adam’s room.
Doug moved my treadmill, so you don’t even have to trick us. 🙂
Words under the wallpaper! It’s the stuff dreams are made of! We found writing under the original shake siding and it made everything worth it.
Point of interest, or not…but I think the wallpaper is a retired Laura Ashley pattern called Bramble. Very popular in the 1990s. Love what you’re doing with the house! So fun to read about something I’ll probably never get to do myself.
Oooh! Thanks! I love tidbits like this. And I’m thrilled you are enjoying reading about the work we are doing!
I’m a few years late to the party, but…yep, that’s definitely Bramble! I was looking for pictures of it and stumbled across this site. What an awesome house!