I’ve been going home a lot this year. And the major reason is that my parents built a new house, and my pet project is go to and help them decorate it.
During my last trip, we managed to get all the furniture in order. About half the furnishings will come from the old house and the rest, we bought to fill up the new one (which is about 3 times bigger). Our goals for this trip were to:
- finish buying all the bathroom accessories (they can get so expensive!)
- pick up random accents
- look at couches and pick a style for the living room
- figure out the entertainment situation
Accessories & Random Accents
The first was pretty easy. I wanted my room to have a muted, slightly feminine look. I’m not usually a huge fan of purple, but after I saw those Nicole Miller shower curtains, I absolutely had to have them! They were on sale when I first saw them in June, but by the time my parents go around to buying them, they were only $19.99 at Bed, Bath & Beyond (major WIN!). During my last trip back, I had also picked out matching DNKY toothbrush holders, soap dishes and trash cans. My bedroom ‘suite’ is actually two rooms with two sinks/vanity areas and a shared toiled/bathtub. So after a quick hunt at Macy’s, the three of us (parents + me) picked an also matching bed set a la Style & Co. Here’s how they came out:
Nicole Miller shower curtain. You can kind of make out the metallic sheen.
The matching DKNY bathroom accessories and how it looks on the granite I picked out over a year ago. The stylist looked at me like I was nuts for wanting black granite in the bathroom, but I think they turned out really well. Especially because it pulls everything in the room towards it.
We were going to get a trash can as well, but I’m leaving my kitteh with my parents from Thanksgiving until Christmas (it’s $125 each way for the cat, so I’m saving $250 just by not bringing her back from Thanksgiving and then there again for Christmas), and we didn’t want her to knock over the creamic trash can and break it. She might get hurt, and the trash can’s $40 plus tax.
The matching pillows. The small one is from Style & Co., a set with the sheets, but the larger ones are actually from TJ Max. They’re identical in color to the original Style & Co. large decorative pillows, except the TJ Max twin was $16 vs. $40. (win!) I don’t have a picture of the sheets, since they were still in packaging when I left.
For my parents room, my mom wanted something that was brown and gold to match the curtains, for which they’d paid an assload. Not everything matches exactly, but I guess if you have a bathroom the size of most 1 bedroom apartments in New York, they don’t have to look exactly the same shade. From far away, lotion dispenser and toothbrush holders look amazing, but they’re just cheap plastic. Whoo Steinmart.
These curtains are ridiculous. A little elaborate for my taste but so rich. It makes the whole room look majestic, especially with my parents’ bed frame.
I didn’t actually help with picking the curtains (my parents just hired someone and said, “Here’s money. Make it pretty.”), but I just love how the dining room turned out. At first, I thought the table was too shiny and plastic looking. The curtains and chandelier do wonders in softening the look.
Living room & Entertaining
As with most standard houses, the living room is huge and two stories tall. The goal was to put an entertainment system in the rather large alcove between the dining room and the living room, and leave the living room for a huge couch set up and some nice rugs.
My dad had this crazy idea of buying two 46″ Sony Bravia W series because they don’t really sell LCDs or plasma over 60″ (or something like that). In the end, we ended up getting a 46″ for the master bedroom too. My mom had gotten used to falling asleep watching TV, so it was hard for her not to. We still have the old 53″ DLP, but that’s going into the entertainment room upstairs. It’s silly to have two entertainment systems in the house, but turning down the thermostat upstairs (usually set to 83 degrees to save electricity) just to watch TV seems sillier.
We also went to what seemed like 100 different furniture places to look for an appropriate couch set. Most of the stores had very traditional leather styles, which seemed too blah for my parents. But the European stores had tiny tiny furniture, which would look so wrong in such a huge space. I really dig this one. It’s 1) made from cloth, so no sticky leather in the summer; 2) a really pretty color; 3) actually big enough to fill up the living room and 4) not that expensive (about $4,000).
… Sadly, my mom hates it.
Here are some gratuitous pictures of bao zi that my mom and I made. They’re sooo gooood. We tried making them super small this time, so each one is about the length of your knuckle (except… you know… round).
Okay this post has gone on for way too long… cheerio!