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Monday, June 27, 2011

Summer in Sepia


Our interiors can be dark during the day. We have plantation shutters, and follow the Tuscan practice of closing up the house when the heat starts to build in the early hours to trap the cooler air, and to ward off the high temperatures. We don't have refrigerated air. Evaporative coolers work well enough here in New Mexico, and a well placed fan can go a long way toward making one comfortable in the desert heat.


I'm eccentrically philosophically opposed to frigid interiors in one hundred degree heat. But it still amazes me to think that I grew up in this town with nothing but shade and a window fan to cool off. That, and a good run through the sprinklers! I know it's not 1955 anymore, though. I aim to keep my guests comfortable in all kinds of weather.


I'm also aiming for a lighter and brighter look inside to balance things a bit. I'm sort of known for decorating with white, but I own a ton of dark things, both collected and inherited, that I love. I'm always trying to integrate them into a liveable combination. But then the season changes, and I have to rework everything again!


I have a wonderful old oil painting of Venice in blues tones that I am trying out in my sitting room. Its sea theme, adjacent to Stoddards's Lectures and a few seashells, lends a summer travel motif to the semi-cloistered room. The reknowned nineteenth century travelogue volumes are an inherited set, and have been displayed pages out to lighten up the look of things, but today I want to see exotic travel destinations from my armchair. . . .











Before



The blues loan a nautical look to the scene, but I can already tell that there is too much of a "sixties professor's library" look to the colors and the picture frame for me, and that I won't live with it long. But strangely, I already feel a little like I've been away somewhere for awhile. . . .  













Nice to have you along for some armchair travel!
Ciao! for now!

Jacqueline

And join me again at

22 comments:

stefanie said...

i love that blue!!!

Linda (More Fun Less Laundry) said...

Hi Jacqueline, My very good friend is also opposed in every way to AC, much to the dismay of her hubby and three kids, but she is so calm and together that she can stay cool anywhere. Unlike me, her friend, who would pop and explode if I were in the 115 degree heat in Arizona or your area! I see what you mean about the professor look, but I also think my first impression when I scrolled to the shot with the painting was that the blue and the water gave a cooling aspect to the space. well, whatever you do in your rooms is always fabulous! Linda

a designer + a contractor said...

Hi Jacqueline,

My husband and I lived in Arizona for five years, so I totally understand where you're coming from regarding the desert heat. We also had plantation shutters throughout our house, and closed those puppies up tight in the summer to keep out the heat! It really made a difference!

Great blog and thank you for becoming a follower of mine : )

And PS - thank you to whomever Jannet is for giving us the tip for leaving a comment! It's been driving me mad for days!!!

Lisa
www.adesignerandacontractor.blogspot.com

Blondie's Journal said...

I love the sepia toned pictures. In this heat, they make me feel cooler just looking at them! I also like your before and afters. Changing things up with the seasons is high on my agenda, too. It all really looks lovely, Jacqueline!

XO,
Jane

Mary Ellen said...

Love your pretty summer vignette!! I do wish I had some pretty star fish like you have. Your post got me to try and find a few things to summer up my mantel----having trouble figuring out what to put in my big urns besides the apple blossoms that are still there from Spring-----hopefully something will come to mind! Thanks for spuring me on to do something summery!

bee blessed
mary

Pamela Gordon said...

I love the painting and the old books and they make a lovely vignette. We don't have central air or air conditioning in our house as I find it too cold and we only have a few days a year that it would be used. So on those steamy days, I keep the blinds closed until late morning after the sun has moved. I keep the windows closed until late afternoon and I get out an electric fan. I also go downstairs where it's about 10 degrees cooler and I need a sweater! :-) Stay cool! Pamela

{ T G L } said...

I salute you - I also oppose air conditioning. Good for you for getting through without it. I grew up in Spain without AC and didn't melt along the way :) It can be done.

I love the antique look of the sepia tones.

Blessings,
This Good Life

Olive Cooper said...

I love the sea painting and my SIL has that same McCoy large bowl and I beg for it very often:) I do not like AC very much as I have rheumatoid arthritis but in the south it is pretty much needed with the humidity. I do not turn it on until mid June at the yellow house and at the old house we don't use it at all. I sort of like that professor look by the way!

Yvonne @ StoneGable said...

YOur summer colors and elements are cool and refreshing. I love the shadow that the plantation shutters cast on it! YOur new painting is stunning and brings just the right touch of soft summer cool blue to your vignette.
Stunning!
Yvonne

Sherry said...

Beautiful painting Jacqueline! It looks great above that cabinet. The blue cools the space instantly. Great look, I personally love the Indiana Jones office look! I have freezed that movie and studied his shelves!LOL

Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...

Jacqueline, I love that painting. It kind of draws you in and it does make me feel cooler after you were talking about the heat. I think I felt a hot flash coming on!!

Trish - Sweetology101 said...

lovely post..I can just feel and smell the sea air..I want to curl up with a book and listen to the ocean lap it's waves as I drift off! GREAT!

Sizzle and Zoom said...

Wonderful change! Love the oil painting.

cecylia.com said...

whjere are these photos taken? I love the rusty looking books!

Come follow my blog sweetie :)

Bella said...

Hi J,
Nice sailing with you today, the blue is a fun beachy vibe! I have seen the old house photo before is it somewhere special or just a found photo?
Congrats on the big number, you are on a steam train to four digits!!
Hugs,
Bella

ANNIE said...

The faint blue of the painting works perfectly with the neutrals! The whole room has a very gentle soothing feel.

Robynne's Nest said...

Love those books and the little clock..Robx

Ido said...

The nautical painting and that vignette is just perfect for summer, love those old books, always when you move things from one place to another feels good.
Have a blessed day!
XXX Ido

A Cottage Muse said...

Truly beautiful...and those books are wonderful!

the fishermans cottage said...

I love the neutical painting, I'm often on the look out for these but am never successful I suppose I need to go to a specialist auction.. yours has wonderful colours and works so well with the books, shells etc x

JudyBug said...

Such pretty pictures! I must admit, I am an A/C addict. Living in this horrendus humid heat in Louisiana...I think I would have the "vapors". ;-)

RobinfromCA said...

Beautiful. I am a sucker for anything with a seaside feel, old books and I love Venice as well. Perfect vignette! I have to say that I do use the A/C. I live in Northern CA where we get a nice chilly marine layer at night. We turn on the attic fan and get the house down to a cool 56ish degrees to start our summer days. But, if we have a heat wave and can't do that the A/C goes on immediately because I wilt (and quite honestly get a little grumpy) when it's too hot. I'm a wimp.

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