Decorating : WIP The Playroom

September 30, 2011 09:07 by ehouston

I can’t believe I am about to share anything about this particular space, but it’s what I have been working on most recently so here goes.  I suppose you need to see the bad with the good or you may end up thinking that aside from some of the hideous wallpaper we still need to remove that this place is a grand, McMansion.  Our place is really quite normal and I have the pictures to prove how we live in it like any average family.  Take the playroom/media room/exercise space/man cave for instance.  (For purposes of this post I will continue by referring to the space as the “playroom”, although it has many, many uses.)

When we first moved in all we had for this room were our pieces of exercise equipment (a treadmill, elliptical machine and a contraption for doing all kinds of lifts) a television and our gaming machines. 


Shot from the end of the room with the regular window, looking back toward the hallway.

It is stark, unassuming and in desperate need of a wall color and window treatments.  This room sits at the end of our upstairs hallway and is rarely seen by anyone but family, so the needs of this space fell way down to the bottom of the “to-do” list.  The only shots I have of the room so far are from when I was attempting to create a daybed sort of sofa thing to make watching the TV a little more comfortable. 


Shot from the doorway toward the end of the house.  The dormer window is to the right in this picture.

In the end we decided the daybed was not working and opted to purchase a futon.  Worst decision ever!  Now we have a totally uncomfortable piece of furniture we would have never bought under any other circumstances.  This was one of those instances when being cheap got the better of me.  But, I digress….that is a story for another day.

Today, I wanted to share the little bit of decorating that has taken place in the playroom.  So far we have managed to hang a few pictures, although they are not all in their permanent spots.  We just wanted to get them out of the closet and off the floor to keep them from getting ruined.  Next step was to add some window treatments.  I had made these oddball drapes for our master bedroom in our last home back in Nashville, TN.  (sorry for the dark shot, we actually have some sun today!)



Just like in our new home, our old master bedroom was gray with green as an accent. 


I found and fell in love with a richly textured fabric in browns with lots of green and gray that looked almost like a wavy corduroy.  I paired it with a lighter weight dark charcoal gray cotton and a very light green velvet for contrast.  On top of having such a diverse pairing of colors and textures I decided to make stationary panels with large loops along the top for hanging in an asymmetrical set up .  It was an attempt at something a little old-world, yet modern (think castle, but without the faux stone around the windows).  After creating muslin versions to get the drape just right I jumped into the process of making the final product.  My other idea was to hang the loops from vintage door knobs that I had picked up from the flea market.  I finished the panels, hung the door knobs and put the panels in place.  After all that measuring, fitting, draping, etc., I never was fully happy with how they turned out.  I also feared buyers would think they were too weird and replaced them with something more standard before listing the home for sale, and that is why we still own these crazy things.



I put the textured fabric on one side and the plain gray fabric on the other, and used the lighter green velvet to trim out the the bottom and to create the loops at the top of each panel.  The original idea was to hang the panels with the charcoal gray side facing out and when the end loop was pulled back and hung on the knobs above the textured corduroy side would show along the edge .  Again, it was a odd idea and I never quite liked the way they turned out. 

So a couple of months ago when I unearthed the panels while trying to tidy up my crafting closet, I realized they could be a FREE solution to the barren windows in our playroom.  The only problem was that I have yet to find the door knobs that went along with them.  After some measuring I determined that only one set could be used…actually it only took one look at the dormer window to realize that nothing but a valance would fit in there.  Later I had an aha moment when I realized the second set could be used in our office, which is at the opposite end of the upstairs and similar in shape.  Now all I needed was to figure out how to hang the panels and make a valance for the dormer window.  It turned out that not finding the door knobs ended up being the best thing that could have happened.  After finding a baggie full of dowel pieces in about 3-4 inch lengths, while cleaning, I realized they would do just fine.  I drilled a couple of holes on each side of the window and looped the curtain panels right over the ends.  The reason I am glad the vintage door knobs have not surfaced yet is that using the dowels gave me the idea to only hang the panels in two places rather than my original design of three.  This new configuration looks a LOT better than the way I had it before and I might not have discovered this new way if I had all of the original pieces to work with.  Score One for Losing things!  Yeah! 

Anyway, after hanging the panels I felt like the dowel ends looked pretty shabby and they really needed to be dressed up a bit.  So, I took a little trip over to Joann’s ETC. to see what might work. 


I ended up bringing home these little wooden spiral cutouts, which I gave a coat of glossy white paint and hot-glued right to the ends of each dowel. 



Again, this is another thing I would not have thought of, but I figured the shapes are fun and that’s really what this playroom is all about, right?  (well, not including the dreaded exercise equipment!)

Kitsch Krafts

PS- I also made a coordinating valance for the dormer window across the room.  Check out the details over at Chic Tweaks!

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