Friday, March 13, 2009

Doing our small part~~~

to stimulate the economy~~ Regular readers know that each year, we plan a project list and budget and then work our butts off for about 3-6 months on renovating/restoring this old farmhouse. This year, despite the economic difficulties, we are doing it again.

What you might not know is that we also take a part of the budget and set it aside for a "splurge" item or two. We live very frugally during the year - we don't eat out a whole lot or go to the movies, we find "free" things to do like visit the plantations and other historical sites in our state (or almost free). Living this way allows us to not feel guilty when we go on our splurge trip.

I almost didn't post about this years splurge - in the face of the struggle so many are having this year, it felt kind of wrong to splurge and it felt kind of wrong to brag about it on the blog, but in the end, this is a farmhouse blog about those things that we do to and for the house......

All the components are inside the cupboard-we simply open the cabinets when we watch T.V. usually only in the evenings. We're going to build a platform, painted glossy black, to raise the T.V. to hide the hole that used to house the mirror - then secure the T.V. to the wall for additional safety from the rompings of 3 labs, a tripod, neices and various friends of our 13 year the moment, the room is off limits to normally allowed romping!

This is our first ever flat screen replaces one of those fat things that required a huge footprint because of the size of the entertainment center that housed it. And that is a cr. 1900 sideboard with a much smaller footprint then the old pressed board, fat, entertainment center that used to live there and house that fat old T.V. (which T.V. included a speaker squeal for the last 9 months or so - we would turn it on and then leave the room or plug our ears until the squeal went away - that was always fun~~)

Fat Old T.V. and Pressboard Ent. Ctr.

Our living room furniture was way too modern when we moved here five years ago - not only too modern, it was over sized and never fit quite right in our long narrow room. Our second year here, the living room was pretty much gutted and redone - but that old furniture had to wait to find a new all went right back into the renovated room - and looked even more wrong then it had before

Our third year here was the year we splurged on new furniture - but that fat old T.V. and Entertainment Center remained....modern and not right. Why? Because I didn't know what I wanted in there. So we waited....for two more years while I browsed magazines and Internet photos hoping to find the perfect fit for our old house. And then came that squeal. And I knew that it was time to make a decision.

On my birthday in January, David and I went antique dreaming (you know, where you spend a morning going into store after store dreaming about being able to afford to buy this piece and that piece and walk out having not bought anything?) And we both had a revelation....a sideboard could be modified into an entertainment center for a flat screen~~ and we saw 3 of them in one store that would be perfect. Then we came home. And waited. And made our project list and set aside a "splurge" amount. And waited some more.

I knew that when we replaced that fat old T.V. it would be with a flat screen and probably a huge flat screen ( David and I argued over the size for months - he wanted huge and I wanted, well, not huge). I also knew that I didn't want folks walking into that living room that took so much of our time and energy to make beautiful saying "wow, a T.V." - instead of "wow, what an inviting room". That sideboard idea would work would be the focal point, not the T.V.!

Three weekends back, we headed out to the antique store and got that sideboard, took it home, measured it to determine what size T.V. we needed to get and then headed back out to find the perfect T.V....and price. And luckily, the only modification to the sideboard that ended up being done was removal of the beveled glass mirror (which will be framed and hung in the downstairs bathroom) and loosening a slat in the back to allow the cords to come through....all modifications easily put back to their original state if in the future, we decide to use that sideboard for its original purpose (as a dining room piece).

Five Years On - Living Room Complete!


  1. OH, you had the same idea as we did! We bought two old dressers to hold our flat-screen televisions. I LOVE your cabinet, that's gorgeous! I am happy for you that your thrift pays off in these beautiful ways! I know what that's like and it's so rewarding for us! LOVE YOUR BLOG! Have a great weekend!

  2. Oh, and I wanted to tell you that we love how the drawers in our dressers hold movies or game components for the kids X-Box, etc!

    And, going antique dreaming is a whole lot better than a high-pressure visit to a retail furniture store, right?


  3. Thanks....make it do right? And if you get a beautiful antique in the process so much the better!

    We go antique dreaming at least 3 or 4 times each year - so far, we've bought two "real" antiques...usually we salvage something, glue and brace it and refinish it and use it......

    doing our part for the economy and the environment.....

  4. Oh, since you posted, I updated the slideshow....its the evolution of our living room....

  5. Beautiful piece! I, too, have recently moved hubby's new flat screen to set on an old buffet I found in the barn. All things electonic fit on top and it looks much better.

    Don't you just love using pieces with history?

  6. Gail....I do! I always feel like somebody loved that peice of furniture once.....I know, I'm a little weird that way -applying human feelings to an inanimate object.....LOL


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