I hate my sun porch. 

I've made this completely apparent in a previous post where I asked you all what I should do to correct this issue. In an effort to freshen up the space as one of my new year resolutions, I forced this room into an unfortunate state of purgatory. Gone went the floral curtains and stained sisal rug...

...but the purchase of a new rug and blinds just didn't feel right. 

I know you shouldn't judge a room when it's in the middle of an overhaul, but I couldn't help but feel like I had made a huge mistake (or two) with the new purchases. And because of that, I've forced my family to live with this hodge podge of new and old while I sat paralyzed with design fear. (Okay, I guess I can also say we've been working on a ton of other things too.)

I really don't think they mind the space as is. Mel especially loves this room to take long naps in the sun, and Lulu uses it as her perch to monitor the squirrel situation out back. 

But it's been driving me crazy, and this weekend I decided enough was enough.

Alex was making a trip to our local hardware store, and I innocently asked him to bring home a few paint chips. He looked up, horrified at my request, knowing that the 20 or so strips I've already pocketed were met with distain once home, and he fought with me. 

I think he said "What? No! Seriously? No! I don't know what to get. How I am going to...no. What do you...no. No, I don't want to. No." You see, he has this odd perception that every time I ask him to pick something up at the store, and I don't give him absolute and explicit instructions as to the specific items to bring home, he gets an earful from me. I don't know where this idea came from, but it's obviously completely unfounded...obviously. Despite his trepidation, he indulged me and came home with five Benjamin Moore paint chips in the "grayish tan" realm of colors I had requested. 

I immediately laid the strips out on the sun porch rug in an effort to choose a color that would complement the new addition to the space. 

Perhaps it was the name alone, but I quickly landed on a winner. Our kitchen and sun porch will soon become a hue aptly named London Fog. My hope is that every time I look at the walls, the color will remind me of one of my favorite cities in the world and of our wonderful Olympic trip last week. Hey, even Lulu approves. 

Here's a closer look at London Fog, with Lulu showing it off a la Vanna White.

So this week we'll be transforming the space with paint, and my hope is that this important first step will bring me closer to falling back in love with this area of our home. 

So where do we go from here? Thanks to everyone who left a comment on my raving post about how I ruined the sun porch. I'm inspired by all the great suggestions you all provided, and have come up with the following plan:

  • Hang light curtains in the sun porch to soften up the space
  • Donate the old wicker love seat and replace it with two chairs
  • Center the asian table between the two chairs so it will serve as a place to drink a cup of coffee with the newspaper, or a spot to enjoy a glass of wine while talking to the person or people cooking in the kitchen
  • Trim the bamboo blinds so we can mount them inside the window frames

We're also leaning toward making a surface for the wine fridge, and building some storage to go underneath it so it will serve as a buffet/wine bar. The storage is key since this is the door we primarily use to go in and out of the house. This rooms needs to have a designated place for shoes and dog paraphernalia.

What are your thoughts? Are we on the right track? Or are we veering even further from the finish line? We look forward to seeing how the color looks on the walls, and sharing the after photos with you. Stay tuned!

Comments 18


8/13/2012 at 11:05 AM
Hi Wendy! This is a fabulous project! I am excited to see the progress! Keep us updated on all the details!

- Katie
Olios Design, LLC
Thanks Katie! We're hoping to log some serious time tonight, and will definitely have pictures to show y'all soon. I'm very excited about the progress.
8/13/2012 at 11:15 AM
I think a new paint colour is going to make a world of difference! Can't wait to see the progress.
I fought it for months, but finally realized the yellow just wouldn't work with the new rug. It's amazing what a fresh coat of paint can do...and how much it inspires you to change even more things about the room. :-)
8/13/2012 at 11:24 AM
Can't wait to see how it turns out. I'm a big believer in paint as a source of change.
Isn't it amazing what a fresh coat of paint can do? I don't think I realized it, but I was pretty sick of the yellow. Bring on change!
8/13/2012 at 5:46 PM
marvelous choices, wendy. can't wait to see what it looks like in the end!
Thanks Jen. Me too, I just wish it was less work getting to that point.
8/13/2012 at 5:48 PM
I love the dirty grays you've selected. I'm thinking of painting my kitchen in the same tones. I can't wait to see the your sunroom draped in London Fog!
Thanks Gretchen, and good luck with your kitchen project!
8/13/2012 at 11:29 PM
I agree that the yellow doesn't work but will wait to see about the gray. Gray is not automatically bad, but it's so "in" right now that I'm already tired of it (and I've been impressed that you guys aren't normally "trend followers"). It does appear that gray will harmonize much better with your rug -- a lovely rug IMO -- so am generally hopeful . . . and am gratified that you're going to trim the blinds to fit them within the window frames.
So far we're really happy with the gray, and hope you'll agree. It is a popular color these days, but can be very timeless and chic when used in the right way. :-) Fingers crossed!
8/13/2012 at 11:31 PM
Oh, a serious oversight in my earlier comment -- the Mel and Lulu picture on the wicker loveseat is TOO cute! I hope they approve whatever changes you make and continue to enjoy this room.
:-) Why thank you! We think they're the bees knees of course, and they've been spending a lot of time in the sun porch. We think they're intrigued by all the action!
8/14/2012 at 10:12 AM
I love the idea of a surface over the wine storage! You could get a stone remant from a granite place or the restore and have it cut to the size you need. Fancy! Good luck and I love where you're headed!
Great tip Nikki, thank you. I can't wait until we get to that point. It will be so fun to have friends gather in this room, or milling indoors and out seamlessly. Wine tasting party, here we come!
8/14/2012 at 12:12 PM
So glad the sun porch project is back! Great choice on the paint color, sometimes the chip name just makes it feel "right," doesn't it?

I know it's a bit down the road, but I'm so excited to see what you do with the wine fridge :-) This may sound crazy, but you could put a wine barrel on one or both sides and then a piece of stone (local soapstone?) across the top. I just bought 2 used barrels from a VA winery, check to see if they offer them for sale occasionally! It's just a really cool thing to have anywhere in your house or outside, especially since you guys seem to like wine as much as I do :-)
Thanks for your comment, Meredith. I'm really happy the sun porch project is back too. I don't know why I was so indecisive these last few months.

Great suggestion on the wine barrel. I've seen them used as cocktail tables in wine cellars, and thought that was such a cool use for them. And you're right, I think we might like wine as much as you do. (Although margaritas make the top 5 as well...)
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