Home decorating: a (marital) hot topic

‘What would it take to make you feel better about this room,’ the professor asked me the other night when we were sitting on the couch in the living room. He was gazing around at the brownish green walls. Dissatisfaction evident on his face.

‘Like, do you maybe want to paint the walls,’ he wondered aloud.

‘Paint the walls?’ I asked him, my voice reflecting the disbelief that was brewing inside me.

Seeing as ‘painting the walls’ wasn’t even in the top ten things it would take to make me feel better about the state of the living room. How is it possible we’ve been married for almost fourteen years and he thinks some different colored walls would improve our living space?

I felt a rant coming on. I didn’t try to squelch it.

‘How about…..get rid of the orange piece of twine that is holding up the curtain…..and buy a curtain rod?!’

‘Oh, well, yes, we could do that’ he replied as if taken aback by my attention to such obvious details.

We’ve lived in the house for almost nine months. When we first moved in, the professor smartly constructed a make-shift curtain rod: a (double) piece of orange twine tied to two points on either side of the large window.

It has served us well. In the sense that the twine has kept the curtains from falling to the ground. But nearly every day since the orange curtain rod was constructed, I’ve gazed upon it and been annoyed by it.

We’re not living in a dorm. It’s not our first apartment. We’re closer to forty than we are to thirty. And we have three children. Shouldn’t we have proper curtain rods?

‘How about…..replace the lamp (shade) that keeps falling off the base?’ I continued, clearly on some kind of ‘roll’.

The lamp shade that I tried to ‘prettify’ by (unsuccessfully slash incompetently) gluing two pieces of ribbon around the bottom edge. I’d gotten the bright idea when we were living in London and I’d seen some beautiful lampshades in one of the shops.

It seems so simple, yet it’s surprisingly difficult – gluing ribbon on a lampshade in a professional looking manner. And, to further enhance its ugliness, the shade falls off the lamp at least once a day. Also the cream colored base and the bright white shade….have never looked good together.

‘How about reupholster the couch’ (which has a rip in each of its seat cushions)?

‘Well, what color would you want to reupholster it,’ my better half asked me, suddenly curious.

‘Blue velour,’ I replied.

‘You want to do blue velour? With OUR kids?’ It seemed he was taking his turn with the rant.

Well, actually I’d seen a picture in a magazine, of a loveseat upholstered in (what I thought was) blue velour. And loved it. And, ever since, had my mind set on doing something similar….when the time came.

But when I retrieved the magazine clipping to show the professor, we determined (upon closer inspection) that it wasn’t blue velour after all. Or even blue velvet.

It was blue denim?! Made to look grainy and distressed by some artsy photographer, no doubt.

Maybe we could paint the walls blue.

4 thoughts on “Home decorating: a (marital) hot topic

  1. I am so laughing because I have seen and commented on the twine…hahahaha!! Yes, I think it was a great idea…but you know…I like the fishing line idea. You guys crack me up.

  2. I’m of the school of thought that says once he starts redecorating, the urge to make the room look nice will take a hold of him and lead to all kinds of great things. After all, you can’t really have a drab looking couch in a room with freshly-painted walls. I have no proof that this school of thought has ever actually been validated, but I say, let him paint the walls and see what happens. 🙂

    Vicky (whose husband just painted our bedroom as a birthday present to me)


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