A new view

Well the bathroom - the ugly pink monstrosity - is gone. We've killed it. Its putrid tiles lie somewhere in the town dump. In its place exists pristine white topped with a wall color I never thought I'd find myself buying to paint room - a sort of mid-toned aquamarine.

My house, you see, used to trend towards the color as tint shades. I fell into thinking just a hint was good enough to give the room a gentle hue, yet keep it bright and airy lending the illusion of more space. It looked good to me for a while too. Nice subtle, pale blue living room. Slightly more color but still on the lighter end of that paint chip strip green for our bedroom. A tan that was supposed to be a bit closer to light light brown for our kitchen. White hallways.

With our former guest room/sewing room I went bold. I painted it yellow. A soft, yet deeper than a tint shade of sunshine. I didn't paint it when L was born. His first room decor was "genderless" yellow with hints of Noah's Ark scattered about and accents of blue. Then we learned Little Miss Thing was on her way and we had to break down and actually paint the last room in the house to ever see a paint brush (outside either tiny bathroom that is). I had long wanted to paint our office a nice shade of pumpkin, but never actually finding a paint chip that matched my brain's vision, nor getting more than a pained look out of B, I just never did paint that room. Yet baby girl was demanding something other than the cream color the former owner's children had splashed on every square inch of wall in our house before putting it on the market.

I settled on two colors before actually looking for "the" shade I'd buy. L's new and improved 'big boy room' would be a nice, boyish blue with hint of grey so that it'd match the quilt Grandma was working hard to finish in time for the update. M's room would be lavender. When all was said and done, those rooms (up until today) were the most vibrant in my house. (If I find something worthy I'll post pics of it shortly)

Then the bathroom - well I've had this vision for a long time. I wanted white wainscoting about half way up the wall all around. I wanted a white shower/bathtub combo. A white pedestal sink. I wanted white toilet. White large tile floor. White, white, white... Because white gave me what I hadn't had before - versatility. I could paint the upper half of the wall one thing today and then give into my temperamental nature by changing it to something totally different next year if I felt so moved. I could accessorize with whatever got me going when I finally made it to the store. Not tied into trying to temper four different shades of pink in a single small room. My original plan was to paint the walls a sort of cornflower blue - something with a little purpley undertone to it. But B overruled. I blame the Y chromosome for that. To him, blue is blue is blue and purple is purple...and either way we had two blue rooms already in the house and one purple. He didn't see a need to go for either shade again. On to plan B. I collected paint chips and I fell in love with the bluey-green bright, vibrant yet almost tranquil color labeled "Marine" on my paint chip card. It was perfect. I could just envision the way the bright color matched with pure white would enliven the small itsy-bitsy space and give it the sense of being a bit bigger than it really was. I could feel the room already feeling more crisp, more clean, more sophisticated than it had before. The pink room always felt dark and dingy to me. Always seemed dirty because of the multiple shades of a single color.

I found a bright blue-with-hint-of-green shower curtain that is topped and trimmed (at bottom) with different bright colored ribbon. I found a small area stripped with blues and teals and yellow. We completed the look with chrome and brass trimmed faucets and accessories. Today we painted the Marine on the walls. And even before its totally dry, even before the blue painters tape comes down and the curtains go up, today I can see the difference.

I sat in my living room after painting as much of the room as I could during M's nap and the boys "just us" walk through the park this afternoon. Suddenly the tint of color in that room seemed washed out and drab. Its bothering me now. Its actually irritating me. It's calling me to run back to Sherman Williams to pick out a new, more lively shade of blue to bring the room back to life. (Yes, I have no money to redo my furniture and so I must stick to the color theme.) I looked at my kitchen and I realized that I really didn't pick the right color and I really do want something with more depth. Perhaps I'll add that to my "paint next" list.

Its been 6.5 years since we painted the first wall in our very own home. Six and half years since we had a blank slate to decorate. My overall tastes haven't changed much. My furniture, wall decorations, and knick-knacks all trend towards the kind of "Country" stuff you can buy out in Lancaster County, PA. Things that speak to you of Colonial days. Things you think that someone once made by hand with its little imperfections and its rustic charm. But my vibrancy tolerance has grown.

I'm trying to come up with a nice tie in to life in general but I'm getting updates of the Yankee/Sox game from the living room and its distracting my throughout process. I guess what I really wanted to get at here, in this nice round about "my life via Trading Spaces way" is that I've grown these last 6.5 years. I've changed. I've matured in more ways than just my taste in paint. I've learned to be bolder. Not that I was shy before, but I was more cautious in self-expression unless I was within my comfort zones. I've broken further from that restraint. I've become more embolden realizing that life is to be lived in the here and now and not at any other time.

I've learned to do the little things to make yourself happy because sometimes you can miss out waiting for the big thing. I've learned that something as small as a change of view - a new color, a new curtain, a new outfit, a new haircut, a new attitude - can change so much about a bad day that has put so little else in your control.

Its amazing what a little tiny amount of color in a small room can illuminate isn't it.


Toni said...

The last couple of paragraphs here really hit home for me, and were a beautiful piece of writing, too.

Kudos on ditching the pink, too!

Mandy said...

This painting is what I miss by living in military housing and never owning my own place. I have decided that I will paint at least one room here!

I think I comfort myself with burgundy curtains and beautiful wrought iron curtain rods!

I want to see pictures of the anti-pink bathroom!