My children are grown. They don’t live here any more. Of course, now that I understand their capacity to thrive in the wild, I want them back. Ah well, let’s make lemonade.
As we have discussed, I’m turning my son’s room into a workroom, albeit one with a piece of furniture that looks suspiciously like a bed. My daughter’s space, on the other hand, will become the Guest Room, capital G, capital R.
But first we had to sort through two and a half decades of detritus. Beloved detritus. We brought both my kids home last month, with the express intention of clearing out.
“OK, Mom,” said my daughter the morning after she arrived, “Let’s go kick me out of your house.” I sputtered to answer, she replied, “I’m joking, Mom.”
We kept a lot. Beverly Bear, the dancer and the pith helmet. The photos and the figurines. As I said when I finally thought of a good response, “I’m happy to keep your treasured memories. But not your trash.” Every now and then I come up with a pretty bon mot.
Decluttered, we were ready for the first tenant. A rug.
You see, I’d been in email discussion with a reader, Linda Pakravan of Access Design Group, for a while. (You can see her blog, here.) She’d been sending me gentle and constant reminders about sourcing rugs certified by GoodWeave. I’ll let the site speak.
“The handmade carpet industry exploits nearly 250,000 children. GoodWeave is helping to combat this problem and transform the rug industry by certifying child-labor-free rugs and by providing education and opportunities to rescued and at-risk children. The GoodWeave certification is implemented by GoodWeave International.”
In shining recognition of the group’s work, their head, Kailash Satyarthi, won the Nobel Peace Prize. Yes, I would love to support their cause.
But it is difficult for the individual consumer to “shop” GoodWeave. Which is why Linda’s help was so useful. She suggested I look at rugs from a Massachusetts company called Merida. Not only GoodWeave certified, but committed to revitalizing the Fall River textile industry. Their portfolio is beautiful.
I was intrigued, charmed, and happy to be following up on my commitment to make the blog support these values. I want to align a love of luxury I cannot relinquish with my belief that humankind can get better if we just try.
Here’s the Grand Tournai I chose. In Vanilla. Look at those long, long channels.
Shadows fall across it like private art.
It’s wool and sisal – soft and textured, both. Comfortable for bare feet, and for sitting. I’ve already tested it with toddlers, thumbs up. The full subtle impact registers in person.
The room itself, right now, looks fairly pitiable. So much to do. I’m after the same didn’t-work-too-hard, decorated-from-a-lived-life, imperfect-but-thoughtful look as in the rest of my house. But, I also want to live up to the elegance of the rug.
What would I like to reuse, if possible? For one, I am sentimentally and aesthetically attached to this duvet cover. Yes, I know it’s just a glorified sheet. Love’s unreasonable.
I’d also like to keep a table from my grandmother’s house. I’ve been told it was built in the 1930s, as a reproduction of 19th century furniture. Sounds about right, Grandmama spent the ’30s as well-resourced wife to a Springfield, MA business owner. She liked a little glamor.
And this Pottery Barn dresser, because I have no interest in buying more furniture than necessary. Drawers are handy. Surfaces are useful for displaying mementos we just can’t throw away.
And no way are we dumping Beverly Bear, her Rabbit cousin, or a hand-painted chest that was always used for dressup clothes. Ah the ice skating costumes and suit jackets. Kimonos and scarves. Spangles upon spangles upon spangles. But I digress.
None of this goes together automatically. But we’re resourceful at midlife, are we not?
I’m thinking I’ll use window coverings, another side table, an upholstered chaise longue, and lamp shades as unifying elements. I imagine cream windows, a matching side table, a vivid print for the chaise, and red or turquoise shades. But, I imagine a lot of things.
I’ve realized I like to use rugs as a starting point. For the workroom, it was this Harlequin from Annie Selke. For the guest room, I knew I wanted simple and white-ish. I’d considered this, from Serena & Lily. But now the Grand Tournai is on the real floor. GoodWeaves is, as they say, in the house.
I’m living with it to see what ideas evolve, passing the door every day, and imagining.
Let’s open the virtual floor to you. I learn from your thinking, even it takes a very different slant than mine.
Affiliate link to Serena & Lily only may generate commissions. No compensation from Access Design Studios or Merida received.