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The Accidental Remodel Part 15 Windows  

Welcome back for Part 15 of our Accidental Remodel!

At this point, I am still waiting on our friend to help move an outlet, put a new one in and move the phone jack.   DH and I spent a couple of days, yes, seriously, and changed out all nine switches and outlets over the existing counter.  They are all finally happy, except a double switch that DH snapped a screw off in it's blue box.  Friend needed there too.  He's tried to come for so many weeks, but something always comes up.  We don't even have a new date now.  It does have to be done before the new cabinets can go in as they will block the one being moved.  So, nothing I can do about the electricity for now.

Cabinet guy (who has had our money for months) is still not returning DH's calls.  He'd originally said sometime in July for the work.  Please join us in prayer about this.  So, nothing I can do about this either.

That leaves window treatments.  After they are chosen, I can settle on wall paint and do that.  Then, after the electricity and cabinets, I get to paint the cabinets, go through the granite thing again and then another tiling job for the backsplash.  A looooot more work, but I'm much closer than I started!  WOOOHOOOO!

Today I'm back trying to decide what to do with the four windows.  It's a bit of a special situation because three of them are a bay window that my office snuggles into.  Yep, right there in the kitchen!  The exposure makes it blinding and boiling during afternoons much of the year.  So much so that I have had to keep huge pieces of cardboard to prop in the windows so I can see my computer screen.  DH says no more of that.  So, whatever goes up now must be able to really block the sun out (and hopefully the heat and freezing cold).

Another issue is that it's an older house and when we had the replacement windows put in years ago, they put quarter round in all of them.  This makes mounting anything in them truly less than wonderful.  No flush surface.  They also left only 1" depth to work with.  We wanted 2" faux wood blinds as they would look nice, clean nicer and block the sun out while still allowing us all the flexibility of "peeking" and endless adjustments of light.  They need way more mounting space than we have.  We found 1" and 1 1/2" ones on line, but after about a month and a half waiting and several phone calls, the sample brackets still haven't come.  Without them, we can't be sure we could adequately mount them to support all that weight (compared to the cheap plastic mini-blinds we had).  It's also caused us to be concerned about dealing with this company.  It's sad because they were our absolute choice and now we aren't thinking we'll risk it.  Extra sad because we were going to put them in our living/dining area too so we could see the TV without all the reflections.  They loose!

Since the beginning of this project, I've done mockups in PhotoShop to try to give us an idea of our options and how they might look.  The first generation I sketched by hand.  I scanned them and "traced" them in PS.  As work progressed, I take photos and pull them into PS.  I leave what's already remodeled alone and alter the areas we are deciding on, so we can see them next to reality.  It's been tremendously helpful. 

There are three paints that go well with the cabinets, granite and tile.  I  have been very distressed that I can't successfully represent them in PS.  FAIL! DH even helped me Google the hex code for them, but when I plug them in PS in the layouts, they don't even remotely resemble the paint chips.  I assume this is due to the back lighting on the computer.

I've done a bunch of mock ups for window treatments.  Different styles.  Different products.  DH still wants blinds, which is great with me, but like I said, we can't get the bracket to try out and now are concerned about the company and it's the only company we know of carrying them.  The cheap plastic mini-blinds fit, but don't block enough light.

There are very few options left to me to soften and brighten the room.  Fabric and paint are mostly it.  I can't pick a paint color until I have a fabric, or know if I'm even going to use fabric.  If we use just blinds, we wouldn't need it.  I'd done some topper mockups, but with the arch over the sink, I wasn't liking how fabric was looking.  I have combed all the fabric stores locally and didn't find anything I liked.  This turned out good because once the backsplash was done, the entire look of the room changed and my choice would not have worked any more. 

I don't like the idea of buying fabric on line.  I want to see it to know the scale of the design and the genuine color, not just whatever my monitor shows.  I want to feel it to know it's weight.  I want to see the dye-job up close to see if it looks like a quality piece.  But, alas, I'm to the point that I can't do anything else but windows, so I have been spending HOURS on line looking at teensy pictures of fabric. 

I found two fabrics I might like.  So, of course, I spent all day making mock ups with, actually four fabrics, each with poor representations of the three paint choices.  I took a screen shot of the tiny picture of the fabric.  I worked in PS to build it into a larger piece.  Some stores kindly put a ruler under each shot and I can use that to be sure I'm creating something close to scale.  Then I open the two current mockups I am using (that reflect work done till now).  I have one for each side of the room.  I used the fabric samples I'd created to see how they'd look in the room, with all three paint colors.  I was thinking roman shades, so I made two versions of each combination; one with the shade pulled up and one with it all the way down, to get a sense of what the room would feel like with each fabric.

I wasn't comfortable with the "down" looks, especially since I was trying out some daring fabrics.  The one over the sink would be down all the time.  The three at the bay would be down much of the time.  Not love.

It was accidental at first...I forgot to turn off the mini-blind layer.  But I liked how it looked with the roman shade OVER the mini-blind.  I know it's unconventional and my mind spins trying to figure out how I could install such a thing, and me with only 1"!  Oh and to make it harder, I want inside mount so the lovely new soft white painted window frames will frame it all.  But, if I can figure a way, we could have the versatility of the mini-blind AND the additional sunblock of the roman shade when needed.  The rest of the time they would look like toppers and I am liking that look.  DH is in love with this.  Not sure how I could pull it off.

I did mockups for four fabrics, each in three paint colors, but I'm just going to share my favorite two.  My favorite is a bright, bold paisley.  I'm shocked I even looked at it as I have HATED paisley my whole life.  I didn't even think of this as paisley until my daughter called it that.  DH loves it best too.  The paisley pulls the room together and brightens it.  We had wanted that rich red to be our accent color as we already had some items that sit out in that color.  With the granite and cooktop issue of dishtowels not absorbing water from them, I ended up with these brilliant yellow micro-fiber towels from Sam's Club.  I couldn't find my red anywhere.  So, this fabric has both the red and yellow and the black from the granite.  It also has lots of other bright colors that would allow me to keep the lime green and the bright blue knives my daughter gave me, in the butcher block like I had been.  This fabric allows many colors and though it's very different than the backsplash, I'm hoping that it will work when all the red and yellow things are out.  We liked it best with Valspar's Empire on the walls.  It's a dark putty type color.  I'm a little concerned with shrinking the room, but once the new cabinets are in, that entire wall will be white cabinets and backsplash and the other two walls already are all white cabinets.  There will be very little of the room actually a wall color paint.  Second choice is Behr's Stable Hay, a soft, neutral yellow/beige.  I believe the pattern is larger than in my mockups.  It has a 27" repeat and my widest window is 35".


My second choice was these stripes, but DH didn't like them at all.  I like adding color better though.

So what do you think?  Do  you buy fabric on line and want to suggest somewhere?  Do you know a fabric that you think would work well in my kitchen?  I'd love to hear from you.  Oh, BTW the third paint color under consideration is Valspar's Cincinnatian Hotel Carl Tan.  I consider it a carmel that is in the neutral family.

I hope you keep me company as I continue with my Accidental Remodel!  You won't believe what we ended up doing on the windows!  Come back and see!

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