It was the room that sold us on the house; a room that oozed with character. . . if you could look past the worn-weary vintage furniture, badly stained carpet, horrible plaster walls, two radiators, and three decades of family memorabilia. We were smitten.
Our contractor studied the walls and ceiling for several weeks before deciding the best approach. Leaving the plaster meant adding no insulation, and a lifetime of cold nights. Tearing down the plaster meant taking down those beautiful beams, and who knew what trouble lurked within that job.The first drywall crew worked several hours before they walked off the job claiming it was too difficult. Fortunately, the next crew was more persistent, or brave.
The old carpet was protecting beautiful hardwood floors. Miraculously, the windows opened. . . and closed properly. We sent the original wrought iron chandelier off to be thoroughly cleaned, and added a shiplap surround and mantle to the fireplace giving it the presence it deserved.
When it came time to furnish this great room, we felt certain we had all the right answers.
We moved the piano, floor screen, and armoire back and forth across the room at least three times. Our sofa stayed in the mountains, but we were insistent we should keep all the chairs. None of them worked. Fortunately, we live in the furniture capital of the world. . .
Having shopped for furniture in North Carolina for decades, we knew of a few hot spots.
First up was a trip to Morganton early one Saturday morning to shop E.J. Victor’s first ever factory sale. In a workroom full of half-finished furniture, including Ralph Lauren and the yet to be announced Kate Spade furnishings, we found two chairs and a console table for our great room, but the sofa eluded us until E.J. Victor announced a pre-market sale in their lavish High Point showroom.
Eventually, all of the boxes were unpacked and the furniture fell into place. The carpet that once filled the space under our dining table now fills the space under the ottoman, which started its life in our master closet many years ago. The bronze elephants and the stampede of horses spent the last few years in our kitchen, while the armoire held court at the front door, holding everything from winter coats to running gear. Each house dictates its own compilation of our favorite things. . . which makes it home..
It’s no longer clear which room will finish top of our list as our favorite room of this house, but this will always be the room that defines this home.. . a great room.
Family Room Wall, Ceiling & Shiplap Paint Color: Olympic Honey Beige (B15-2)
Floor & Trim Stain: Jacobean Matte