Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Remember the bedroom?


So here we are.  The bedroom problem only started with the bed breaking.  When the bed leg broke, it scratched the paint off the floor.  I started pulling at the scratched paint to discover it didn't adhere to the turquoise paint underneath.  It peels off like a bad sunburn.  I think the only cure at this point is to have it sanded down.  

Somewhere in the process of trying to make the room more sophisticated, it's lost its joy.  I much preferred the fun color on the floor, the wallpaper and the funky furniture.  It lost its groove.

Oh, and the walls are also peeling.  

These aren't places I plastered over but new places where the many layers of paint are just cracking and peeling off the plaster.  I suspect a moisture problem and, if it is, I know the culprit.

Most of the peeling is in the vicinity of this old chimney.  The chimney is no longer used for anything and it's slated to come off.  When the kitchen is remodeled, there will be a double window placed over a new sink in the kitchen right where the chimney is.

Taking it down won't be a big deal but it mushrooms into a much larger project.  The chimney goes through the eave of the house so that would have to be replaced, the roof would have to repaired or replaced, the siding would have to be fixed and the new window should be put in.  I first need to get a variance to replace the window.

I think I need to lick my wounds a little longer and figure out what I'm going to do with this mess.  It's summer, it's hot and I have no inspiration.

* * * * *

In other news, I've gotten a CRAZY amount to traffic recently on my old Tom Ka Soup post all because of the photo on Pinterest.  It's amazing the power of that Pinterest.

Over 11,000 hits and counting.  To capitalize on the success of that post, I'm working on a sequel:  Tom Ka Soup (The Vegan Remix).  After a little testing I think I've come up with a delicous broth that makes you not miss the fish sauce.  It's a little hot for a soup post but I'm really enjoying working on the food photos.


  1. I am going a little crazy here with trying to move my workrooms and keep track of paperwork, so Tom Ka Soup sounds like manna from heaven (incidentally I am sitting in 'sunny' California with a jacket on!)

  2. I'm sorry about the bedroom :(
    Walk away....inspiration will return! That is some soup...ten thousand+ hits: WOW!! I love the shrimp version. Steve, have you tried Vietnamese noodle soup, pho? That is one of my favorites.

  3. Yes, definitely walk away from the bedroom for a while. Focus on something else, and the joy will come back to that room for you. I know about projects mushrooming! I sometimes think the beach house will never be done... especially since much of my free time is spent on the marina condo (out of necessity -- one must, after all, have a functioning bathroom). Good luck. And congrats on your soup hit!

  4. I understand how it feels to be in the midst of a mess. Don't worry. You'll find some great inspiration and the bedroom will be a wonderful and fun haven for you and the cats! :)


  5. this is exactly why i don't go messing with things around here. i really feel your pain.

    i actually think the room looks pretty cool right now.

    pinterest is pretty amazing. and i'm looking forward to the vegan recipe.

    the room may have lost its groove but you haven't.

  6. Bummer dude!
    (Practicing my Cali accent)

    Hubby and I call that domino effect "pulling a thread." You know, like when you have that thread hanging on a great sweater, and you only intend to pull it a bit to neaten it up...UGH. Before you know it you are knittin' a whole damn new one.
    And a hat to match.

    I think you should take a photo of the soup, have it made into a mural/wallpaper, and then pick colors from that inspiration. :)

    The vegan version of that soup sounds like fun-in the winter,though, because even in the arctic circle of the PNW-aka Oregon-we made it to 85 already today.

    How did I miss that the bed BROKE?
    I will not even ask how THAT happened...

    Grab a beer/wine/etc and go to the beach. You have all fall/winter to be inside and decorating-we'll all be here waiting for the reveal. Maybe some of us will be in San Diego by then!Fingers crossed...

  7. OHHH! I feel so bad for you. This is the worst kind of project creep.
    Maybe the new soup + 10 bottles of wine (not at once) will bring the inspiration back.
    We'll wait.

  8. Moisture damage is rough. We have it in our living room on the ceiling above the sofa. Huge project, it just keeps peeling away. I can't wait to see your food pics.

  9. I'm hyperventilating just reading this post.

    Walk away from the chimney, walk away from the bedroom.

    Take the suggestions of the wise one and walk away to the beach.

    Maybe P'Town, lots of inspiration there.

    xo Jane

  10. Oh dear the chimney looks like it will create more jobs than it cures! I'm sure it will all come together in the end!

  11. Isn't paint annoying? I feel bad that you're room is lacking. I haven't posted pics of my bathroom yet for the same reason. I don't know what to put on the walls! I still love it though. Can't wait to see your soup recipe.

  12. Ah, the trials and tribulations of home ownership... Looks like it's already capped. Couldn't tell much on the brick pointing.

    You're right, sometimes you got to pull the car back into the garage and start all over again. ( I hate it when it happens to me.) I like where your initial thoughts are going, The rooms speaking to you.


  13. Mr. Steve, it is the heat! It slows everybody down! Put your head in the refrigerator - smiles! - and you will soon come up with a fab plan (which we will all copy!) You are one of the most creative blogger-designers I know.

    Warm hugs to you.


  14. I know I pinned that soup because it is my most favorite thing in the world to eat out. I'd love a vegan remix.

    I know you will find the sophisticated vibe you are looking for in your room.

  15. Seems it's always something when you own an older home...I'd give the bedroom and chimney the summer off. Enjoy the other wonderful rooms in your home. They'll both be there in fall when cooler weather prevails and you can look at them afresh.

  16. I had to stop halfway through your post to go make myself a strong drink.

    I made one for you, too.

  17. Things can -- and will -- only get better.

    Bad luck comes in threes: broken bed; peeling paint; bad chimney. OK, that's three things. No more bad luck!

    But yeah, get thee to a beach asap.

  18. Bummer! So sorry....I had been wondering about that room. I hate that but I know you will come up with the best plan. At the risk of sounding really corny...remember when life hands you lemons...make lemonade. Love your blog and thanks for reminding us that bloggers have plenty of troubles too.

  19. p.s. Maybe salvage some of the chimney bricks to make a cool patio or walkway?

  20. I agree . . . much to hot to even begiin to stir up some inspiration. It seems like the chimney removal will open a huge can of worms . . . good luck!

  21. The relentless love/hate relationship with an antique. Somewhere on page three or four of my punch list, I too have an old chimney, mine in the wall instead of outside but once it's gone, I gain an extra 6 sq ft in both the kitchen and main bath above!! But the thought of the sheer scope of the demo project has just paralyzed me. Good luck; won't it be fun to watch those bricks fly!

  22. Yeah Leaky fireplace boy...focus on the soup and ignore the leaks.

    Precisely what I would do.


  23. So Sorry.
    I thought that crap only happened to me. I think that's why I'm always surfing the real estate listings and lusting after perfect "done" homes. Of course I would still have to fix all the headaches here before I could sell my place and then I guess I would actually be happy. Quite the Catch-22. Sigh.
    This is what I would do with your bedroom,- push the furniture up against the peeling paint and center the bed or something over the floor. Then just pretend it's perfect. :)
    Anyway, Cool about the Pinterest Soup and all the Hits! and Yes, Please do a Vegan one!
    I'm off to look at my Stats, and Pinterest and real estate listings!

  24. I feel your Reno pain! I'll have to check out that soup!

  25. Nothing like an old house and one thing leading to another huh? After seventeen years we still chase things in our house and the husband seems to find that fun...ugh! But we're getting there now if we only had a money tree!


  26. Bummer! I like Jane's suggestion--P'town colors. Maybe you need that in one room

  27. Hi Steve,
    So sorry the bedroom project has bogged down. Regarding the peeling wall paint: I don't suppose there could be calcimine on the walls - that will cause paint to peel - just a thought. It's usually found on ceilings but maybe someone put some on the walls.
    Hope you get your inspiration back soon - I just know you will.
    Best regards,

  28. Oh, Steve. I hate when you put effort into a project and something like that happens. It does take the joy right out of it. Good luck with the moisture issue and in the meantime, enjoy your stats!!!

  29. Oh, Steve, what on earth happened here.

    Do you need an intervention?

    Take some time, off, as I need to do often, and you will get your mojo back.

  30. I read this last night but David sent me to bed so I did not have time to post a comment. I was having a migraine and should not have been using the computer.

    I feel your pain. I feel the same about my house. Half of it looks like a giant pile of junk and the other half is as-yet undecorated. I don't know where to start or end or even what I want to achieve any more. I am just realizing you really can't decorate properly if you house has no bones. I can decorate until I'm blue in the face, but it just lacks impact.

    So now I want a new house. Now THAT"s decor depression.

    I just also decided I hate clutter but can't stop buying stuff.

    xo Terri

  31. Ok…I was all focused on the bedroom until you talked about the soup! Now I will be on Pinterest looking for it! That has been an amazing venue to boost business and blogs alike! I'm sure you will get inspired again for your bedroom…this summer just seems to be sapping everyone of their creative juices!

  32. Don't give up on painting the floor yet if you really liked it! I had the same problem in my laundry room and after it peeled up horribly I was convinced I was going to have to sand it too. Instead, as a last ditch effort, I painted over the peeling paint with Gripper primer, then painted over that with my floor paint, then sealed that with a paint on varnish. it's a high traffic room and after a few months it's held up great.

    11,000 pageviews is mind boggling to me. I get excited over a few hundred...

  33. So many good responses to this post! They've said it all, so here's just a little something I thought you might enjoy ... some Rockport gardens!

  34. Steve I am so sorry that is just the worst!You put in so much time and effort and now this!

    I would be too upset to do anything for awhile. Take some time to regroup and maybe even have some fun.

    Art by Karena

  35. Reminds me of the song we are singing endlessly with the twins while Camille is visiting here in Albuquerque..."There was an old lady who swallowed a fly...."

    Isn't it fortunate that your recipe can use really fresh ingredients with the farmer's markets now in full swing? I remember your blog post well and I actually made the soup back in January or February. Yum!

  36. I think my bedroom is the evil twin of yours. Same wall problem, probably same reason. It'll will be the next rehab project- in due time. Don't want to jump in too fast and scare it.

  37. Oh the joys of home ownership. On the bright side, 10,000 hit...amazing!! I can hardly wait to see the room when the inspiration returns- and it will!!

  38. So sorry Steve. The inspiration will come- you're that good! Too hot and humid this week for any fresh ideas (even in our Maine;)
    happy weekend!

  39. Sad about the paint but it's an opp to change it up! Love the pics of Kennebunkport and hope you made it to the clam shack. BEST clams. Better than Fat Boy in Maine.

  40. ahhh..the slippery slope fallacy...as the new owner of an older home---I believe I'm about to understand this a little more.

    11,000 + hits...I love pinterest! Your beautiful carrot flowers just so happen to be my board cover or whatever they call it for my board titled Fun Food.

  41. Dear Steve, I am so sorry for the disappointments and surprises you have encountered with the bedroom redo. I have learned that at times like these, turning away to a different space or even outdoor project helps. Success, in another venture will renew your energies for the bedroom. I doubt it's going anywhere. It seems like one of those first things first rooms where responsible ownership has over taken the pleasure from your innate decorator sense.
    Well, I am heading out doors for a few hours to attempt to rejuvenate a our tired garden beds which suffer from heat stroke.
    Best, Linda

  42. Holy stats batman......soup....who knew.
    That bedroom problem might throw me into a tailspin.....not an easy simply solution there.

  43. Dear Steve,

    So sorry for the proverbial hornet's nest that may be building around that old chimney. I know how it is to become discouraged and uninspired.

    On another note, last week I bought the new "Cottage Style" book by BHG and was thrilled to open up to the second section and see your house. I recognized it instantly and felt a warm glow. This is probably old news to most of your followers, but I have been so busy with my own projects this year, I haven't had time to check in with my favorite bloggers on quite awhile. In my humble opinion, the way you styled your living room for your own photos is far superior to the way their stylist pulled things together. I am very happy for your successes and on-going recognition of your many talents.

    Hang in there!


  44. Laughed at Lime in the Coconut's comment. Step away from the room for a bit, inspiration will return. Peek through some magazines, waste a few hours on Pinterest, visit some more of those great shops in Boston. Getting it right won't seem so arduous once your spark returns.