Before & After: Our Entryway

10 Dec 2009
Ours was one of the worst entryways I'd ever seen. (below) The sickly light from the too-small 70s fixture cast an off-yellow glow on everything. I tried to keep it off so as not to scare guests away but I'm not sure a really dark entry helped either. The walls went up & up and anything I already owned that I attempted to put up there felt dinky. And the dirty linoleum was just the icing on the cake!


So we replaced the light fixture, the floors, painted & added some art & finally, here is is now:


I wanted something really special when you first walk in... Something unexpected & a little crazy. The 30 Leonardo DaVinci sketches were originally intended for the living room but once the beautiful stencilling went up I realized I couldn't cover it. Our sweet friends Amy & Greg came over & helped us hang the sketches. I had a really crazy week last week & was supposed to take it easy, so I literally just sat on a chair at the top of the stairs and watched & guided & tried not to be too bossy ;) as the three of them -Dave , Amy & Greg- "randomly" hung up the prints.

All together this was about an 8-10 hour project- split between both Dave & I, it didn't actually take this long but that's about how long it took man-hours-wise. We bought the book Da Vinci's Notebook and I cut & tore out the sketches along the original worn & jagged edges. We used a variety of different subject matter & for some reason I can't help being drawn to the "grotesque" studies he did of people. Da Vinci believed that to be able to recreate beauty you had to have an understanding of ugliness & what made someone "grotesque." Dave just kept shaking his head as I cut out more "old men" sketches from the book for the wall.

But with 30 frames to fill, we definitely got our fair share of pretty drawings:
And everything in between:

The custom 20" x 14" antique gold frames (approx $20 each from here) came in pieces & Dave put them together. (With 30 frames, this took HOURS but the price made it all worth it to us.) I ordered uncut white matting for the frames and just mounted the sketches right onto the matting. My big dilemma was: would I hang them in a perfect grid or fo for a more Alice in Wonderland feel? Clearly the grid would be safer but I've always loved Alice in Wonderland and try to take risks when I can. (And the installation was so much quicker!!! No laster levels, just friends & some hammers & nails!)

The floors are now seagrass & here is an older pic I have of them (below.) We have a little Ikea storage bench for putting on shoes & it's where Christian waits when we're all leaving the house in a rush. The cushion is really easy to recover and I plan on switching out the fabrics whenever I feel like it:

And below is a view of the entryway looking up:

And here it is now (below). I couldn't be happier with how the 4-feet high Minka- Lavery caged lantern from Bellacor works with the frames. (I got it for around $200 on sale!) ...I don't know if this makes sense to you (and this may be the synesthete in me speaking) but when I look up at the entry it reminds me of tinkling chimes. I can't explain it but something about the frames & the lantern & the light is musical to me... It's weird to say but I can almost hear it. (hahah okay I hope you don't think I'm on crack, but do you see at all what I mean?)

And finally, one last photo of the whole thing from the living room. The frames aren't spaced evenly and we just eyed the prints creating a crazy entryway of "randomness." I know this might not be pleasing to everyone, butI'm so glad I decided to go this way instead of with a grid... the risk was worth it.


Needless to say after last week & all of our holiday decorating frenzy, my face & ankles & hands swelled up & I got cankles!!! eeeeeek :) They're gone right now but try to come back whenever I'm on my feet fro more than a little bit. I'm almost ready for this baby!!!
xoxox.
lauren

-Exact frame purchased: Radius Colorcast- Antique Gold  (RC23)
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