Stitch Merchant


The Time to Rest is Over

When we finished renovating our last house we were zapped. Fried. Burnt out. And completely exhausted. When we arrived in our new house, we couldn't even fathom picking up a tool and getting back to it. We simply had no energy left. Instead, we sat back and got to know our house just as it was.

We are firm believers that a house has a soul and if you listen carefully enough, the house will tell you exactly how it wants to be. Our house is an Eastlake Victorian and is overflowing with character. We fell in love with it before we even saw the whole thing. But like any house of its age it has been subject to the fads of years gone by. One of which was painting all of the trim. Now, don't get me wrong. I love painted trim in the right house. Our last house had all of the trim and woodwork painted white and it was perfect… in that house. But this house isn't keen on having white woodwork. Some of the woodwork is the original deep red-brown stain and it's stunning. But most of it has been slathered in a good coat of white paint.

The first time I really tried to imagine what the house would look like when we were finished, the woodwork showed up in the dark red-brown. I immediately dismissed that hair-brained idea because of the all-consuming nature of stripping paint from every scrap of woodwork. I kept trying to move on to more sensible and less time-consuming solutions but that little voice inside my head, the one that was really listening to the house, kept saying dark-red brown. I would heave a big sigh, knowing the voice was right and then dismiss the idea again. This happened more and more often until I came to my senses and finally listened to the house.

But listening and conceding the point are far different from actually doing any work. After months of living regular life, with no renovation projects on the go, I finally grew tired of occupying the couch. The truth is that I don't like it very much. I need to be up and working. I did need that rest when we first got here. But the time to rest is over and the time to work is here. And I love it. I missed renovating. I missed getting my hands dirty and making things that seemed a bit old and tired, fresh and new again.

The house is big and and the trail of paint seems endless. We'll see how I really feel about this hair-brained idea after I've stripped the whole house.

renovatingBetty and Bing