Wednesday, February 23, 2011

A Matter of Taste

Anyone who has ever put a house on the market while still living there could probably top any story I have to tell.  Let's just say it is not really "living" in your home and it's not anything like what you'd call "home" during that time.

For starters, you have to neuter the entire house because most prospective buyers cannot see past your taste in anything.  That includes artwork, photographs, books, furniture, accessories, color, and probably even your music collection.

In preparation for putting my house on the market, I have stripped away as much as I could without renting storage. (well, actually I am using part of my brother's garage for some things.)  But it seems that is not good enough.  My home is still considered too "owner specific." 

You see in the early 90's I got very involved in faux painting.  I took lots of classes.  Then to help pay for more classes I painted a few restaurants and took on many residential jobs.  Of course, I tried out the various finishes on my own walls too.  Fifteen to twenty years later those finishes are not as appealing to the masses.

This is one room that I still found cozy but I understood why not everyone would find it appealing.

The Tuscan finish is a mottled blend of autumn yellows, browns and reds.  Even the baseboards were painted.  The benches over the radiators were upholstered in a red and goldish yellow animal print.

As you can see, the furniture, rug and art definately falls into the same color scheme so changing the walls will have repercussions there.

It is obvious this was one of those all or nothing decisions.  Painting the walls required skim coating the textured finish to prepare for a smooth painted surface.

So it got way worse before it got better.
Then came the dilemma of what color to choose that would appeal to a general audience and still complement the wood trim and the blue tiles of the fireplace.  I tested colors early on by painting over the existing color.
It took three tries to come up with a color that satisfied all the criteria.

The winning color is called Favorite Tan SW6157 and now that the room is completely painted I am satisfied with my choice.  It doesn't fight with the wood trim.  It complements the blue tile, and should not be found offensive by more that 2% of the population. (no official poll on that one)

The radiators had to be painted too.

They went from a yellowy shade to a rather non descript greenish hue.

 The seats were stripped of the faux animal print and covered in a neutral fabric with no pattern. 

I added a couple pieces of furniture in an attempt to make it look inviting but that is difficult when these pieces were not chosen to make this wall color look good.

 Since the baseboards had first been painted red and then covered with a mustard color in a way that parts of the red peered through, it seemed cost effective to remove them and start over.

 With quarter round, cap, and base to stain, I had my work cut out for me.

In an attempt to match the rest of the trim, I stained first with Deep Mahogany and then with Rosewood.  This was followed with orange shellac once they were in place.

Most of my furnishings no longer work in this room so it no longer looks like I live here.


1 comment:

  1. A great transformation. Very buyer friendly, whoever the hell that is.