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work and charges. Beyond walls, there
are many surfaces that can benefit from
Interior Design
a coat or two of paint. Sand, prime and
paint older wooden furniture. Give it a
finished, polished look with a touch of
Nancy Dorney wax over the paint or a more distressed
country look with a brush of sand paper
on the almost dry surface. Bookcases,
kitchen cabinets that are still in good
Resourceful Redecorating
shape, even accessories such as ceramic
By Nancy Dorney
lamp bases or picture frames can find a
Spring is a time of rebirth and freshness. The sun shines in on our rooms that
new life with a flick of your brush. $$
have been lived in, cared for and refreshed for each season. We may find ourselves
Again, there are establishments that will
looking at them with a wishful eye as we ease out of the doldrums of winter. How
paint your furniture for you and again,
badly they need an uplift! A new spring wardrobe! Wouldn’t it be fun to call in a
check out their work and their charges.
TV show to strip everything out and start anew? It doesn’t look promising… the
A Trip to the Lumber Yard or Local
bank account just won’t stretch to new living room furniture, and how about a new
Home Improvement Store
kitchen while we’re at it? Then there’s the dining room. The chairs could really be
If you want to really change the whole tone of a room, wood is the way. If you don’t
replaced and the farm table’s cottage white legs have been kicked by too many little
have cornice molding against the ceiling, add it. If you have the normal width of
shoes. Even that framed poster in the family room you loved ten years ago is faded
cornice molding, add to it or replace it with a deep, 6-8 inches. There are relatively
and doesn’t tweak your enthusiasm as it did. The lamp shades are a totally different
easy DIY (Do It Yourself) moldings available, with separate corner pieces, negating
color than they were when you bought them. How depressing…
the need for the dreaded miter saw. Alternatively, a narrow molding can be applied
Well, taken one step at a time, a change can happen. If energy abounds, getting
2-4 inches below your moldings and the entire space, ceiling through the narrow
out the chop saw, staple and glue guns, sewing machine and paint rollers may seem
molding painted white or the molding color. This will give the illusion of a higher
thrilling to some! Others of us may have amazing ideas but that’s where it ends.
ceiling. Expensive ornate or very wide moldings had best be done by a licensed
Whether doing it yourself or with help, a little or a lot, there are many makeover
carpenter. They are too easy to mess up. Base moldings can also be added as well as
projects that won’t drain your bank account. Pick one area to start in and go from
those around interior doors or finished openings, even fireplaces. Wainscoting with
there, and don’t get too ambitious. You can create your own makeover!
its accompanying chair rail molding can very easily be added to create a more formal
look to almost any room but particularly a dining room. A deep toned wall above
Paint, Paint, Paint
lighter colored or white wainscoting below adds a punch of drama often found in the
Paint is cheap, relatively speaking. Painting walls, ceilings and trim can make a
federal houses from Boston to Williamsburg. If you’re considering the latter three
huge change. A new progression of colors through the house can redefine spaces as
additions, I heartily suggest you enlist professional help.
A bedroom headboard can be inexpensively made by framing out
the desired space, edging it with molding and then adding a coat of
coordinating paint. With some brackets and shelving, all of those
beloved stuffed animals in your daughter’s room can be happily
displayed high on her wall. The same trick can offer a new home
for decorative bowls and baskets in the kitchen or treasures and
keepsakes in the den or family room.
Get a Handle on It
A great and, inexpensive way to bring a whole new look to a room
or simply a piece of furniture is to change the hardware. Replace
the existing kitchen cabinet knobs and handles with up-to-date
brushed nickel or oiled bronze fixtures and you’ll be amazed at the
difference! Bedroom dressers and armoires can be next but don’t
stop there! How about new door knobs? Remember that they
should match throughout the house. Go back to the hardware stores
in the area and see what’s new. This is something that is definitely
DIY but please learn from my mistake: read the instructions first!
Taking the whole thing out and putting it back the correct way took
me forever. If you have children in the house, save those little tools
that come with the door knob kits I hide mine on the door frame
molding above to unlock the doors that are inadvertently locked
from the inside.
The Dreaded Window
well as simply freshen things up. Using lighter and darker tones of the same color
Oh yes, then you look at those freshly painted windows (don’t
adds depth and interest to a room. Pick colors that can be divided and conquered.
forget them!) and can’t for the life of you figure out what to do with them, but they
The wall color in one room can become the drapery color in the next. $$ If you
need help. An easy and reasonable way to start is with the rolled, natural, split reed
choose to bite the bullet and hire a painter, talk to two or three and check out their
or slat shades that are being shown today. Often they alone are enough, particularly
Improper Northshoerian April 20024 24 4/2/2009 10:23:58 AM
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