Bits and pieces fall into place

I am spinning my wheels a bit here. I suppose that happens when you get close to finishing a major undertaking like a gut renovation of kitchen/bathrooms in a 100-year-old-plus house. There’s lots more to post about, some bits are completely done and haven’t seen the light of blog (hallway lights!), while others are just waiting for their finishing touches that we will add more or less at our leisure (kitchen before and after is going to be so good!)… Read the rest

So Lustrous!

I love Farrow and Ball. And, there is no other paint quite like it. I questioned it before, but now I know that it does stand apart from other brands, in a class of its own. It’s not just the color – although that’s pretty damn good too, but the quality – the looks and feels of it on a wall. And I am not the only one who noticed the difference – Sergey did too, which means it really does exist!… Read the rest

Sputnik Chandelier

As I have mentioned before, we are replacing nearly all of the overhead fixtures in the house. My most favorite addition, by far, is a sputnik chandelier in our dining room (the red room). Pictures really don’t do it justice, it looks incredible in person.

I had bookmarked the tutorial on transforming the IKEA Maskros this beautiful chandelier more than a year ago, and have in fact had all of the supplies to make this just sitting and waiting for the right moment.… Read the rest

Fan of our Ceilings

Our ceilings are starting to look really, really good. We are so happy with quality of the work. The surface don’t look seamless or perfect, but perfectly smooth – kind of like it has always been there and was never graced by the ugliness of the swirly. And the ceiling medallions are fitting in seamlessly. I am not sure that the medallions were there originally, in fact, I am pretty sure they weren’t.… Read the rest

Inspiration Files: Mari Vanna (DC Edition)

While I was traveling in Russia, Sergey was back in DC, getting his Russian on without actually traveling to the place. Lucky him, he got press passes to the soft opening of Mari Vanna, a Russian-themed restaurant – operated, decorated, and staffed by Russians. We have actually checked it out together since, and I can say that the decor is right on point – drawing inspiration from a mix of Ballets Russes, the intelligentsia’s dacha, perhaps with a pinch of a communal flat setup in a pre-1917 mansion.… Read the rest

Doors (the never ending saga)

As we play the waiting game – currently on order: front door, front door paint, hallway lights, paint for kitchen and bathroom – I decided that there was no better time to address an issue that I had planned to leave for later. Bedroom doors. Those three (not counting the closets) doors are the last hollow core, very ugly doors we have left to replace.

We purchased salvaged, solid wood replacements oh about three years ago.… Read the rest

Front Door Deliberations

I really had hoped that the door agonies which plagued me when we were searching for that perfect pair of french doors (and all the bells and whistles that come with those) were behind me. I had spent weeks researching and envisioning, only to face the reality that those perfect little details come with a serious price tag attached (goodbye cremone bolts, sadly i never knew you!) I am perfectly happy with the doors that we ended up with, and I am sure that will be the case with our front door as well.… Read the rest

Inspiration Files: Olya Thompson, Brooklyn Brownstone

I first saw this brownstone in the December 2009 feature in Vogue, and subsequently also bookmarked it on the WSJ (I have paper copies of all this goodness as well). The home belonged to Charles and Olya Thompson – she from Russia, and evidently very fond of the country and the broader Eurasia region as evidenced by her home. Samovars (Russian tea kettles, typically of ginormous sizes, because one drinks tea at pretty much all times, and after every activity), beautiful orthodox icons, gilded everything, color, pattern and texture on every textile (these rugs are enormously beautiful), a bit of red and leopard mixed in with modern art, and books – many, many books.… Read the rest

Lock, Set, and Ready

Wheeee. Sergey and I locked in our refinance rate. The clock is set and we’re ready to get this show over with. We have about six weeks until it’s all done, and in the meantime we have to get all of our documents together, paint away, and get whatever else done in the house that we can to best show it off. We will probably finish right around the same time three years ago when we signed up for this adventure.… Read the rest