The not-perfect house: master suite

When I met Sparks in summer 2008 he was in the process of sprucing up his 1974 Midcentury Modern house. Lots of our early dates involved removing wallpaper, painting, and ripping up carpet. One beautiful summer day we took out the whole kitchen and burned it. It was good.

In February 2010 we finally finished that renovation and moved back into the house. Looking back, I realize that I never showed you pictures of the results. I was still working full time, then, and got pregnant very soon after–so a lot of the house has never been photo-ready. Now, though, I’m home full time. While decluttering the house into showroom condition isn’t possible (hello… baby), I’ve started a regular regimen of housework that makes me feel really good about the house. Also, taking pictures of it to share on my blog will help me spot the little jobs and improvements that need doing. So, here we go. Time to show it off!


The master bedroom is 11’x16′. We thought the bed and nightstands would fit with only one inch to spare, but we turned out to have more like four or five. We were tickled pink. I need to put blue-tack on those pictures to keep them straight on the wall. We also need to paint this room. I’ve thought long and hard (the pink bathroom is a complicating factor–as you’ll see) and I think that two shades of celadon would be best, the darker one on the shorter walls and the lighter one on the long walls.


Here’s the other short wall of the master bedroom. Here you can see one of the interesting quirks of this house–it has almost no windows. Rather, every room has a glass slider door. It makes furniture placement interesting, but brings in tons of light and air. I dragged a baby swing out of the way to take this picture.


Here is the master bathroom vanity, complete with askew piles of towels (come on, even Cheryl Mendelson says that insisting your towels all face the same way is going too far.) The vanity is IKEA’s Hemnes, the sink is IKEA, and the cabinet is IKEA Lillangen. It used to be the Godmorgon cabinet, which was all mirrors inside and out and was awesome until one of the doors–which was a glass mirror epoxied to its hinge–fell off and almost killed me. IKEA gave us store credit for the cabinet, but I think they should do a recall. Anyway, here you see the fetching pink color of the bathroom, which has to be taken into account when choosing a color for the bedroom.


Here is my beautiful big shower-bath. When Sparks first began to ask me what I would want to have in a house, my #1 thing was a big beautiful tub to soak in. This tub is 66″ long and 36″ wide, six inches larger than a normal tub in both dimensions. It is just right. We surrounded it with white subway tile and installed a window to bring in sunlight. I am happy as a clam.


And here are some of the IKEA Pax wardrobes. We have two doubles and a single, all in a row on this wall. One functions as linen/medicine cabinet, one is my closet, and one currently serves to store out-of-season clothes but one day, if Sparks needs to move his stuff out of the guest room’s closet, will become his.

I love this bathroom, even though it isn’t very big.


We may not keep the house in perfect order, but we do think the baby is pretty near flawless. Kiss her head, you know you want to.

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