About twelve years ago, a client asked me to update her bedroom. It was very large and it seemed cold and empty. To warm it up - I designed this large bookcase along the wall that leads to the bathroom and closet. She had run out of shelf space, and need a place to put her TV and extra books – so it was a welcomed addition. At the same time, we also added more shelves like this in the study and on the large upstairs landing.
As for the décor, my client had all her gold bedding and a skirted table from her previous interior designer, so I just added some blue and cream check curtains and had her pine armoire stained dark. I also had her replace the beige carpet with this flat gold and cream trellis. A decade later, it was all in need of an upgrade. The Tuscany gold was definitely dated and everything looked worn and shabby, especially the carpet where there was a path that had worn in it to the bathroom door.
For her new look – my client wanted something calm and soothing without bright colors or patterns. Certainly no Tuscany gold! And while we needed to make a lot of changes, we tried to keep the expense down. When my upholsterer proved too expensive for her – she found her own to save some money. Other clients – don’t get any ideas!!! This client is a criminal judge and I dare YOU to win an argument with her!!!!
OK - Here’s what I came up with:
The biggest change was we painted the entire room in Pratt & Lambert Feathered Gray – all the white molding from the 90s was painted gray – as was the ceiling and tray ceilings (oy! – more 90s architecture!) Another big change was we installed wall to wall seagrass.
The bedding is white – the duvet is actually white velvet. I had Monica (Custom Creations by Monica) make the Matelasse blanket cover which came out great! Thanks Monica! Many arguments later over that custom blanket cover!
AND: Did you know you can wash cotton velvet in the washing machine and dry it??? What??? My housekeeper told me she was going to wash the velvet pillows in my family room and I thought she was insane. My last set of velvet pillows were ruined at the dry cleaners. She told me she washes her own velvet pillows (an old set of mine ) all the time – and darn, if she isn’t right!!! In an hour – I had freshly washed pillow covers! Do NOT try this with silk velvet – but for cotton and poly velvet – wash away! So – this client can actually wash her white velvet duvet in the washing machine instead of having it dry cleaned. Her housekeeper was not too happy when I told her this. She said – do I have to iron it too?
We bought two new nightstands from Wisteria – to replace her skirted table and pine nightstand, along with two new lamps from Aidan Gray. The headboard and dust skirt are a heavy, dark gray linen. The ottoman fabric is Les Indiennes – com fabric – this is the only pattern we used. Above the bed is a convex mirror from Ballards (I think!) She didn’t want a sunburst – so what do you put over a headboard that shape?
Another architectural flaw is that her windows are not even – one is a French door and one is a short window. Why???? Crazy!!! I tried to disguise the flaw by treating the windows the same – and the dark brown blinds hide the size difference. The curtains are double width white linen.
The Swedish desk is from my favorite – The Lone Ranger! HERE. I love that guy! He has to be the NICEST person in the business. There is NOTHING he wouldn’t do for me and I’m not a big client either. Above the desk we placed a huge mirror that my client found at my other favorite store Olivine! WAIT! Helen and Kathy at Olivine might be the nicest people in the business!! OK, I haven’t even mentioned Leslie at Segreto Finishes!!
I tried to redo her shelves somewhat by adding white vases and jars mostly by Suzanne Kasler at Ballard Designs. I had not ordered her pieces from the bisque line but was surprised at the size. I couldn’t even use the largest sizes. It’s very substantial and a great price too and I would def order from there again.
The cane chair was from Aidan Gray – we recovered it in the white linen.
And from this side of the room. I love how it looks without molding painted white, it looks updated to me to be all one color – from the ceiling to the base molding. And I really like the Feathered Gray because it’s a khaki gray, not a blue gray, so it’s warmer.
I had her dark brown stained chairs painted gray and upholstered in gray velvet. We also painted the wood table gray. The prints were hers – and I just added the convex mirror in silver, along with the lamp from Aidan Gray.
In case you ever make an upholstered headboard – I usually make mine 60” tall. I know some people like them taller, but I think this is a good height. Not too crazy or trendy.
Here’s a closeup of the nailheads. Hien Lam made this beautiful headboard.
And that’s that.
Thank you everyone for sending in your “Ask Miss Cote de Texas” decorating questions! I plan to go through them and answer them here in the near future. You can still send in your questions to - Cotedetexas@aol.com.