Thursday, August 27, 2009

Parlez-vous francais?

When we moved into this OLD house and my daughter said that she wanted a "French" bedroom, I seriously was at a loss for what to do. Her room at the time was a teal green hue everywhere. Molding, baseboards, doors and walls were all bluey green. Not hideous, mind you. Just not my Abbie girl, and definitely not french.

So, I pondered the room and the situation for a bit, and finally I was struck with inspiration. I was out shopping for the girls when I spotted a darling lavender swing top with navy blue grosgrain ribbon detailing. The Gymboree tag said that the top was part of their Paris line, and voila! I had it. I knew what to do!

That weekend, with swing top in tow, I headed to my local Home Depot. I used their color matching system to create a dreamy lavender paint for Abbie's walls. Step one was done. Then I ordered their decorator white paint ( yes, that is the official name of the white) for the trim and moldings.

That weekend I spent painting, painting and more painting. My hair looked gray from the specks of lavender and white that the roller deflected there. Then I hit my first dilemma.

The former wallpaper boarder was applied incorrectly and would not come off. Try as I might, I couldn't strip that paper ( and I have stripped loads and loads of paper). I was frustrated that my vision was not going to be, until . . . I figured out a creative solution. I just painted that border with the decorator white paint. Instantly, the border looked like it was part of the room's molding. It looked great, but I knew it was lacking . . . something.

Later, I discovered just what it needed. I found navy blue grosgrain ribbon, just like the inspiration shirt. I took the ribbon and hot glued it between the border and the wall. It was perfect!

Then, I knew that the beautiful doors that were so shiny and so white were unlikely to stay that shiny and white with my three kiddies running through the house. I decided that if I couldn't beat them (and have shiny white doors), then I could join them and let them get those doors good and dirty. So, one afternoon I painted the interior squares of molding on the doors with chalkboard paint. Instant character and instant fun! Abbie and the other kiddies love them!

For the windows, I found some navy blue and white toile fabric at the local fabric store for 50% off. Score! I hemmed them on the sewing machine (to this day, I can only sew straight lines)and then, I gathered them up with more ribbon. I used the existing window hardware and sheers leftover from my old house to create the whole window look.

Finally, what french room would actually be a french room without the Eiffel Tower and some french phrases? I used three leftover white shelves of varying sizes from my old house to create the tower base and then I used oops paint to freehand the tower. The french phrases we checked online ( I wanted to be sure that I was putting up G rated phrases.) and then I freehanded those too. I could have used vinyl stick phrases, but frankly, I was too cheap.
The furniture and bedding was already white so there was no expense there. I did buy some navy pillowcases from ikea for a boost of color. The total cost of the room for paint, ribbon, fabric, and pillowcases was approximately 75.00. Not bad for a whole new room!

The result?

A darling girl's room that is not too juvenile, but not too grown up either.

Just perfect I think. I just love, love, love it!

What about you?


  1. I love it! Never would have thought to put lavender and navy blue together, but I really like it! Great job.



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