In the meantime, we're still holding on most things. Our buyers have until July 7th to get their mortgage finalized; they had the bank's appraiser come by yesterday, so hopefully that's progressing with all good speed. We're waiting until we hear they've been approved before we start actually packing, since if they aren't, then we're back to square one on selling the condo. (There's been some other interest, but nothing definitive.) It should all go smoothly, but you never know.
We also aren't actually buying any furniture or anything yet. But that doesn't stop me from trying to at least think through some of the decisions we'll need to make if all goes well. Thanks for all the feedback on the whole kids-sharing-room thing; we've pretty much decided that we're okay with sticking little boy in a tiny room of his own for a decade or so. Whenever he starts complaining too much about his sister's room being bigger, we can decide if we want to share an office or some such instead. So Kavi is probably getting her canopy/trundle bed. It's a shame that the Madeleine bed is also the most expensive of the beds. If it were two-thirds the price, I'd just buy it. We'll see.
(Dear homeowners we're negotiating with right this second, if you happen to google and find this post, please don't fret too much that we're already redecorating your beautiful home. We love what you've done so far with the place, and if we manage to come to agreement on price, we plan to do our best to maintain integrity with the beautiful design elements that are already there.)
Now my obsessiveness has moved on to our bedroom. Most of the houses we're looking at in Oak Park are smallish houses that have converted their attics into master suites. What that means is that you get a room with low walls (about 50 inches high), but cathedral ceilings. They're nominally large rooms (say 19' x 14'), but the low walls means that they don't actually feel all that large. Kevin bumps his head when he comes near the walls. They're also mostly just drywalled, so currently a bit bland. Here's one of them:
Here's an actual Gothic cathedral ceiling, with amazing vaulted moldings, and another one, with moldings and stained glass, and Notre Dame, with elaborate murals.
Obviously, those moldings and murals are way too much for a little bedroom, and I truly dislike this yucky blue sky ceiling with wall mural, but could I get away with a little bit of medieval design? Something like this medieval mosaic is more the style I was originally thinking of, maybe just one of the triangular sections above the windows? But maybe that would clash too much with bedding, etc. -- a painting like that would be such a strong design choice, it'd pretty much demand that everything else was coordinated with it.
One other option might be to pin sari fabric flat to the ceiling (not draping, as that would definitely be too claustrophobic, I think), which would get some color up there. And if we decided we didn't like it, it'd be relatively easy to take it down again and turn it into curtains for another room or some such. These utterly gorgeous Indian-inspired bedrooms are tempting me.
I tried looking for decorating advice online, and found:
"In any room that has cathedral ceilings, the "height" is built in, so drawing the eye up is not the goal. Translated, that means it can be a darker color or the same color as your wall. Same color ceilings and walls tend to be monochromatic and clean; lighter colored ceilings and walls tend to be more traditional; darker color ceilings than walls tends to be very contemporary."
I went looking for more info and found this very detailed page on painting ceilings -- but it almost has too many ideas for me. Now I don't know whether to add wallpaper, or borders, or moldings, or what!
The rest of the house will probably be Craftsman-style, so dark wood moldings around doors and windows and ceilings. One house we're looking at has gorgeously restored the Craftsman style on the first floor, and it's tempting to just keep carrying that through the rest of the house (as we can afford to). They even have little medieval touches, which makes me think that you can mix in a bit of medieval with Craftsman and it'll work okay. I could just go with dark wood beams in the bedroom too, for consistency, but I'm worried it'll feel too dark. (Also, maybe super-expensive to add, as opposed to little moldings from Home Depot?)
This ceiling has added moldings, which starts to give a little more of the look of the Gothic ceiling, although they chose to paint them the same color as the ceiling, so it's a very subtle effect. I kind of like it, though it's also a bit barn-like. And this ceiling is more of a barrel vault than a cathedral ceiling, but I like the dark walls with lighter ceiling (though I wouldn't do pure white), and the elaborate crown molding around the border of wall-meeting-ceiling. Also like the switching back to um...not sure what you call it -- baseboard? molding? halfway down the wall, although I'm pretty sure the walls in these bedrooms aren't high enough to get away with that!
Anyway, thoughts? I'm pretty sure I want to do something more than just painting it, or even painting it in two colors, to lend it a bit more character, but how much can I get away with? Can I give it a mild medieval feel without going totally over the top?
And just to complicate matters, you can keep in mind that our previous bedroom was painted in deep rich tones of gold, with a chocolate accent wall (then repainted in bone with white trim, for the sale, and all of our bedding is currently coordinated with that. I don't think we can get away with paint colors that dark -- I don't even think I want to. But maybe a much lighter shade of gold?