Tales from the Crib: Creating the Perfect New Place to Call Home Requires Bold Moves

Aug 11

I’ve moved nine times in the last ten years. My sister-in-law said I change houses like other people change underwear.


But seriously, there’s a method to my madness. I love new cities, old houses, renovations, and interior design. Moving lets me indulge those passions. Here’s a recap of my wandering:

Columbia, SC
Santa Fe, NM
Columbia, SC
Lafayette, IN
Charlotte, NC
Columbia, SC

In all but one case, I bought an older home – in some cases 80-plus years old homes – and renovated it. As soon as things looked perfect, I got itchy, flipped it, and moved. One house sold in two weeks, another in three days, and the last and least impressive of them all, sold after one showing. I had to scramble to find my next move-to house.

I jumped on Zillow and landed on a For Sale By Owner that had been on the market two days. The house was a 1957 ranch in a great neighborhood that had been totally redone. New roof. New HVAC. New wiring and lighting. New kitchen and baths. Refinished hardwoods. Sounded move-in ready. So I called the seller and made an offer sight unseen. The seller insisted I see it and after a tour, we agreed on a price. Done deal.

No house is ever move-in ready in my book. There’s always something I need to do. I started thinking about small things to tweak to make the new crib my own. I fixated on this drab silver sofa. It was spot-on gorgeous three houses back. Now it was tired and needed a facelift.

Flipping through a magazine, I found a tiny photo of orange fabric and was smitten. And torn. When the college football teams you pull for, Alabama and South Carolina, wear Crimson and Garnet respectively, and their arch rivals wear orange, I needed to be careful about color choices. Alas, I threw caution to the wind. I found actual fabric swatches and from the little bit of fabric on the left I knew my den needed a flame orange sofa as its focal point.

Once in place, the now dazzling sofa looked small and blah on the light gray wall.

So I splashed some paint up on the wall. Polled friends on Facebook. Blue, dark green or light green?

I kept coming back to one bold color. Dark green. Spruce green. Cabin green. Some people thought it clashed with the orange. The painter said he got where I was going with it. I went with the painter’s opinion. What do you think?

Now it was time to build out the wall with furniture and art. I had originally thought about one large painting by a Navajo artist named Shonto Begay. I love the painting – one woman told me it was crude – but it didn’t work on the green and was hung in a bedroom.

After mulling it over, I decided on an assemblage of Pueblo Indian vintage dance paraphernalia I’d collected over the last 20 years with a bit of Sioux beadwork thrown in for good measure. To be honest, I stared at the wall for several days. The thought of installing everything so it looked good was daunting. How’d I do?

On a roll, I painted the sunroom green adding a soft orange rug to tie-it to the sofa. And added a dinosaur pot. It’s prehistoric.

Then I moved to this wall in the den. More orange. Some turquoise. Pueblo Indian drums and dance wands…


And done! Next stop is the kitchen at the other end of the room…I’ll share that later. Just so you know, when I’m not writing, I’m either plotting my next move or renovating and designing my current landing spot. This house is looking pretty darn cool so no plans to move. Yet.

Let me know what you think. And if you need an interior designer, art consultant or someone to pack your house for a move, I’m your girl. I’m also a darn good freelance writer, blogger and public relations person. Lux-Writes, that’s me.



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