Friday, May 29, 2015

Analysis Paralysis

Analysis paralysis:   "The state of over-analyzing (or over-thinking) a situation so that a decision or action is never taken, in effect paralyzing the outcome. A decision can be treated as over-complicated, with too many detailed options, so that a choice is never made, rather than try something and change if a major problem arises. A person might be seeking the optimal or "perfect" solution upfront, and fear making any decision which could lead to erroneous results, when on the way to a better solution."

A reader actually diagnosed my condition as "Analysis Paralysis!"
I can honestly say that's what I have.  Now that my contractors are pushing for decisions that need to be made, not just considered, I find myself not able to make a final decision. 
For example, I thought I wanted Virginia Mist granite for the kitchen countertops, but when I went looking for slabs, I didn't like the look.  

I thought it was supposed to resemble soapstone, but the slabs I'm finding look like they have clouds all over them and look grainy and too gray.

So now I'm reconsidering soapstone.  
I've read all the articles about the pros and cons.

My contractor even took me to a restaurant in the City, The Commisary, that has soapstone to see how it has held up.
After more than a year in a commercial application, this soapstone looks amazing.  Yes there are chips and scratches but I can live with them.

My contractor has been very patient, I have to say.  Here he is selecting the perfect marble for my bathroom vanity.  I'm thinking I should just leave these decisions up to him-that way a decision will at least be made.  
He doesn't suffer from "Analysis Paralysis!"

I did make a few decisions on lighting though.
Or at least I ordered a few lights.
This one came from Wisteria and is a potential winner for the cathedral ceiling in the living room.
At 37" wide, I hope it's wide enough to fill the space.  However, I'm still unsure about the look and am debating a huge lantern instead...

 I ordered two small chandeliers from Pottery Barn. 
This one for the powder room or master closet...

 ...and this one for the master bathroom.
If they don't work, I can return them.  Most lighting sites charge a restocking fee or don't allow returns, so I feel good about my purchases.

The one decision I don't regret making though is marrying this guy!
No "Paralysis Analysis" here!
33 years ago today we said "I do!"
Happy Anniversary to us!

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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Lighting Obsessions

When the electricians came and wired the house, I began obsessing over lighting.
We had a "lighting plan," but still, just walking through the house and pointing to where I want a pendant or a chandelier made the lighting plan come to life.

I've been perusing light fixtures online, staying up way too late, totally obsessed.
One of my favorite lighting sites is Circa Lighting.  Their Atlanta store above makes me want to book a flight!

 There are too many choices, and at the same time, I want more!
For instance, while I love the look above with the maritime inspired pendants, I think two lanterns would also be wonderful.

I love these open and airy pendants from Circa and am leaning towards using this color of metal.
Burnished brass, warm metals or gilded iron.

 This pendant has a glass enclosure and would also be beautiful, but maybe it would work in the living room, hanging from the cathedral ceiling.

Another choice for either the kitchen island or living room is this lantern from Restoration Hardware.


 I keep going back to a more traditional lantern though, like this one from Suzanne Kasler for Circa Lighting.

Shades of Light has a similar pendant.
Although it is for outdoors, it would work over the kitchen island too.

 When I took the dining room chandelier from my old house, I had plans to install it in the new dining room.  But now I'm thinking it's too big and I'm having to work around it's organic look.  
This chandelier is similar but more delicate and has warm brass metal and crystals.

 It I don't go with crystals, this is an option too.
It's wooden, but painted gold.  It would be nice over the breakfast nook.

So to break it down, either I go with my original plan of using my old chandelier in the dining room as pictured above and building my lighting design around it, or I go down an entirely different road and choose fixtures in warm brass or gilded iron with crystals in the dining room and entry. 
Can you see why I'm obsessing?  

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Thursday, May 14, 2015

You Asked For It

 So many have asked for photos of the house and I've resisted because there still isn't much to share in the way of progress.  So since you asked for it, here are they are:

In the atrium, the original spiral staircase was removed.  It was too narrow and illegal, so a new one is being made.  In the meantime, a ladder is the only access to the roof.  I'm definitely not going to climb up!

 This is our master bathroom.  
The plumbers are installing the valves in our walk in shower.
Just last week, the electricians added the cans and all electrical in the house.

This is our master bedroom, looking in to the walk in closet. 
Recently, the opening was made smaller and a pair of French doors will go there with obscure glass.
I'm very excited about the closet and am working with Marty, the cabinet maker to design it.

 The stairway, looking down towards the family room.

 The family room looking towards the wet bar area.
Marty, the cabinet maker is making cabinets that will be black with just a little distressing.
I plan to top it with limestone.  The whole room will be wallpapered in grasscloth!

On the outside, the whole house is getting a coat of new stucco that will be smooth and have sharper edges.  An updated look. 
Sheetrock should be going in next week or the week after.  That will be a game changer!
In the meantime, I'm gathering light fixtures, plumbing fixtures, paint samples, window covering samples and furniture ideas.  There's so much to do that I've taken a little blog break, but promise to resume again!

Mr. A, the Les M├ęchantes girls and I also took a break this week and headed north to Asti.  
Les M├ęchantes is doing a pop-up at Healdsburg's H2 Hotel on May 16th and 17th, so if you're in the wine country, stop by and say hi!

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Friday, May 1, 2015

Happy May Day!

This May Day has me dreaming of planting my garden, even though it's way too soon to start digging in the dirt.

 Nevertheless, I'm hanging out with the chickens at the nursery, plotting and scheming up a landscape plan for the City house.
I'm thinking boxwood borders, olive trees and white roses.

 Of all times to be having the worst drought in history!
I want to plant boxwood and I'm afraid they're going to need too much water.
Do I opt to plant them anyway and just take a shower every other day to balance out the watering needs?

The resident kitty could care less about my dilemma!
That's ok.  We'll just wait until fall to landscape and hopefully by then it will start raining.

Wishing you all a Happy May Day!

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