Design by Summer Thornton
Photo by Dana Gallagher (via Martha Stewart)
Well, only a week after professing my love for love seats I found one to call my own. Say hello to my little friend:
She’s a beaut, eh? Curvy, petite, with a deep comfy seat, and in impeccable condition. We also have no room for her, nor do we need her, and I fell in love with the idea of putting this settee in Baby L’s room when she’s bigger. In a hypothetical home that we do not have. Hm… Not exactly fitting logical, practical criteria for buying new furniture. But it’s Mother’s Day, so I got the go-ahead. Ha ha! Timing is everything, right?
I have a feeling she’ll be a long-term project (like the wingback) to be worked on at “upholstery club” (My friend Lindsey and I and occasional friends who join us in her basement). I’m currently finishing the matching partner for my Louis chair I showed you, but I’ll be done that soon and be ready for something new.
So now begins the mission to find the perfect fabric for this lovely love seat.
Here are my criteria:
- I love that this settee has no tufting, because I want to go bold and fun and whimsical with the fabric. Something large scale, colourful, and bold. Especially since it will likely end up in a child’s room.
- While I’m leaning towards a floral or paisley, I don’t want the fabric to look too old fashioned - like the fabric grandma would have upholstered in originally; something a bit more contemporary to juxtapose with its antique shape.
- I think I want the pattern to be somewhat feminine and curvy - after all. this is a curvy little piece of furniture.
- I do not want anything symmetrical/geometric etc. that will need to be exactly straight or centred. I’m terrible at making things straight, and my upholstery skills are just not there yet.
- I want the fabric to have a range of colours. That way I can pick from a variety of colours in the fabric to create a scheme around in the future. (Alternatively I could do a neutral fabric… but only if that neutral is still fun and pretty!)
- And I want the fabric design to have staying power. No trendy patterns. No juvenile themes. I want to like it in 5 years, and for my daughter to be able to grow up with it.
So. Tall order. Here are a few of the fabrics I have my eye on:
This fabric is one I’ve loved for a long time and thought I might use on a headboard a couple years from now for Baby L, if the fabric is still around. But it fits the criteria for my settee - curvy, whimsical (I love the crazy birds), varied colour palette, and not too baby-girl. Plus I love the name. ;)
Lucy Eden by Richloom, from Fabric.com
The next two are also high contenders because I love the colour palettes - so many gorgeous colours to work with. But they could read a bit too granny if the scale of the print is too small. I’ll have to see a swatch.
Darjeeling Bachette through Designer Fabrics Online
This next one is a great contemporary floral - but the grey and yellow scheme might be too limiting…
Dahlia Dove by Thomas Paul for Duralee through Fabric.com
I adore this next one, and it comes in double width, and it’s quite reasonably priced. But it’s a limited colour scheme. And what do you think, is ikat “trendy”? Will it look totally dated in a few years? I’m just not sure I can commit. But boy, is it lovely.
Bari 22-A through Designer Fabrics Online
Also breaking some rules (it’s a stripe which needs to be lined up perfectly) is this fun colourful fabric. Wouldn’t it look cool on an upholstered piece? But perhaps the colour scheme is a touch juvenile.
Freedom through Designer Fabrics Online
This one’s not a floral, and it’s not colourful, but it’s still fun! I appreciate that it’s reminiscent of the legendary Les Touches fabric from Brunschwig and Fils. And Baby L is in love with puppies right now, so I’m sure she would appreciate its dalmation-like style!
And I’ve loved this branchy fabric from Dwell for a long time. In fact I have it on the bench cushion in my entry (in the grey colourway). Totally whimsical. Colour scheme is limited, but I think I could add accent colours in pretty easily with pillows… the blue’s almost a neutral (or I could use the grey…)
Vintage Blossom in Jade by Dwell Studio through Tonic Living
And how awesome is this next fabric?! I’m a huge fan. I’m just not sure this is the project for it. (Maybe a headboard in a boys’ room, or an ottoman in a play room…) But it’s tempting.
World through Designer Fabrics Online
If this one were cheaper I’d be seriously tempted to use it. It’s the epitome of whimsical. It’s like Narnia on fabric. Perfect for a story time settee. *sigh*
Forest in Red Pepper by Thomas Paul for Duralee through Fabric.com
I love Easter. To me, I think creating our own Easter traditions with my children may be more important than Christmas traditions. Part of it is a faith thing, for sure. I want the message of Easter to resonate in my children’s hearts. I want them to rejoice at the arrival of King Jesus in Jerusalem on Palm Sunday. I want them to feel the sorrow of the cross on Good Friday. I want them to marvel and delight in the power of the Great Overcomer on Easter Sunday, and praise our risen Lord! But I also just love the celebration of Spring, new life, and the end of Winter that Easter brings too. There are many things I’d love to do with my kids to celebrate Easter in the years to come, but I don’t want to “wait until they’re older” either.
Little M and I have been reading in his storybook Bible the stories of Easter week, and learning a couple new songs. And this week we decorated eggs. There is no way that this could not be a gong show with a toddler. (Unless maybe you have girls. I don’t know.)
I considered draining the raw egg from the shells so the the eggs wouldn’t be wasted, but knew they’d be too fragile to be handled. So I hard boiled them. You can’t really see it in the picture, but those things are shattered and cracked and pretty gross.
Last year, when he was one, we just dyed them. This year I wanted something easy to make them more interesting so we used mini rubber bands to create some criss-crossed lines.
They turned out pretty well, and Little M was SO excited. He wants to make more. And we just may, considering I had to throw these out today during his nap because he’s manhandled them so many times. Ah well. Good Easter memories made.
I’ve been playing around. I know this is a bit different from the previous look, but I’m feeling springy… Let me know what you think… is it too distracting/busy? I’d really like to customize/clean-up/reorganize my right side bar, but that requires knowing html. :P
Before Christmas I was really craving another colour in our living room area. Our walls are painted Woodlawn Blue by Benjamin Moore - and I really like it for a wall colour. It’s very warm and dynamic - changing its look throughout the day.
Beyond that everything was pretty much blue or cream/beige/ivory. I considered adding apple green (I have accents in my adjacent kitchen) but wanted something decidedly warm. I love the blue/orange complementary scheme, so I decided to play with it a bit by adding hits of orange:
The easiest way to do that is obviously with throw pillows, so I found some great ikat and Greek key fabrics in a dark orange.
And some art prints with orange, too:
My Cheapy McCheaperson tip of the day: these are cut out of an old day planner I had with Group of Seven artwork in it (I love me some Group of Seven. I’d seriously like the real paintings… if I had zillions of dollars).
And this isn’t orange, but it’s warm: I’m loving the hit of brass on my $15 marble-topped UsedRegina finds:
I was a teensy bit worried these side tables would be too “Granny”, but I love them. And they work perfectly (because of their diminutive size) with our vintage sofa which is both extremely long and low.
By the way, that vintage sofa is the hold-up on my showing you the entire living room. We’ve been sitting on it for a few months now (Sean is stoked, because it’s a great napping couch - the seat cushion is 7 feet long!) But I’ve decided to change course with a couple of things. I want to upholster the seat into the couch (instead of removable cushions/seat cover) because it’s looking too saggy and wrinkly for my liking. Like a bad college apartment futon. Then I will Scotchguard the snot out of it. Then I can finish the piping cord. THEN I’ll show you my living room. (And remember this will be done on Baby L’s schedule, not my own, so it won’t happen all that soon.)
Also warming up around here? The weather!! We built this guy a week ago:
(Don’t you love his “crazy hair”? Little M was pretty excited about it.)
And now this little snowman, and all his snow particle friends, are merely a distant memory. I’m so thankful for an early spring! (Not that we won’t get more snow. But c’mon, in Saskatchewan an April blizzard is pretty much part of spring anyways.)
Do you ever find yourself inexplicably drawn to one colour? I totally do this. Around the time I got married it was a soft celery green. I was so drawn to it and used it so often, my mother-in-law dubbed it “Justine Green”. And then I went through a long turquoise/robin’s egg blue phase which morphed into a teal/peacock blue phase. And I’ve since had a bout with dark orange. (I’ve been adding orange to my living room, which I’ll show you next week.) It’s not that I constantly change my favourite colour. It’s that they’re all my favourite colours. But now and then I find myself really drawn to one colour in particular.
And these days I have a new colour crush. Let’s see if you can tell by two of my favourite new wardrobe items (thank you, Old Navy):
(Got this dress on clearance. It has pockets! And looks great belted. And I want to wear it with cheetah print heels, but everyone tells me that’s crazy.)
(My new bright green jeans. Anyone under 25 thinks these are awesome. Most people over 25 look at me a bit funny. Or they say “Someone’s ready for spring!” But I love them.)
There you go. Emerald Green. Or Kelly Green. Or any hue therein. This weekend seemed like a good time to share some green with you (Early Happy St. Paddy’s Day!) so enjoy some great interiors with some pops of deep green today!