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Around Our Town...If These Walls Could Talk

Dear Decorator...

02/01/2006 - Dear Decorator,

I just inherited my family's antique bedroom suite. It includes: bed frame, armoire, lingerie chest and dresser. The furniture isn't in the greatest shape but it is still functional. What can I do to revamp my family's furniture?

-Grateful Granddaughter

Dear Grateful Granddaughter,

There are a couple of ways that you can give your family's furniture a face lift. You can break out the spray paint, this will allow the furniture to complement your current style. A fresh coat of paint can also make your furniture look years younger, it can hide any discoloration, marks or scratches. If you want to refinish the furniture, you can go to any home improvement store and check out refinishing products. This will have a longer process time but can add character to your furniture. You will also have to be careful with the chemicals, remember to work in a well ventilated area and wear proper protection. If you don't want to hassle with either you can have a professional refinish the bedroom suite. Remember, sometimes furniture gets better with age.

Dear Decorator,

I am expecting my first child and I want to turn my guest bedroom into a nursery. My question is with all the furniture in the room where do I start?

-First Time Mom

Congratulations! I would look at my furniture and ask myself could my child use any of this when he/she is older? Where can I store it? Is it in great shape to sell? If you elect to keep the furniture, for example the bed, disassemble it and store it in the garage, shed or attic. The dresser can be used for a changing area. Remove the mirror if any and place a sheet of plywood an inch larger on all sides. Build a frame on all sides so that the baby cannot roll out. Staple a coordinating fabric like a skirt on the plywood and buy or make a padded changing pad to place on top of the dresser. Store all changing supplies in drawers for easy access. For the nightstand you can create a sitting area next to the crib and a rocking chair. The nightstand can be used to store all burping towels, music, blankets, ets. If you have a second dresser, it can be stored in the closet for all baby clothes. This will give you more room in the bedroom for an area rug and play area. Paint the room in either soft colors or bright primary colors, whichever compliments the fabric. Don't forget to add a lamp or two for midnight feedings and changings.

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