I came home from work one day this week and found they had started the siding on the front of the house.  This would be exciting if it weren't the wrong siding.

This is a closeup of it.  Remember when I was talking about my conceptual sculpture class and how forms (shapes) and materials have the ability to communicate nonverbally?  Well, this siding says Adirondack cabin or maybe country cottage to me.  It's all about the bevel between each piece.  The difference is really subtle but it communicates very differently.

You might use it here it you were trying to create this look.

Or you might remember the horizontal paneling from the bedroom of HGTV's Sarah's House. 

It's perfectly lovely in these rooms, but it's not the look I'm going for.

This is what it should look like...

...or this.

I put in an emergency call to the contractor.   The architect didn't specify what it should be and he made an assumption because this is the only kind of tongue-and-groove cedar that's available.   

The problem:  the material I want isn't available; $1000 of the wrong material was already primed, cut and partially installed.

The solution:   take down what was already done, cut the bevels off both sides and then route new tongues and grooves on both sides.

This is the end result.  It's a little difficult to see with the natural grain but if you go back up to the first photo, you'll see the difference.

This shows it a little better.

(You can't imagine how great all this freshly cut cedar smells!)

And here's a close up.  Once it's painted, I think it will perfectly replicate the original siding found on many of the local Greek Revivals.  

I'm pleased with how gracefully the contractor dealt with this little misstep.  Sam admitted that they thought the choice was a little odd and that he should have asked.  In the end, they wanted it to be correct and getting to the solution was pretty easy.  And we're both really pleased with the outcome.

Meanwhile inside...

I pretty much cleaned the living room out so avoid plaster dust getting on everything and, as I mentioned, the new windows give a whole new classical, elegant feeling to the room.  In fact, now that I'm getting a feeling for what the outside is going to look and feel like, I'm not so sure my vintage cottage look is going to work at all.  

So I started to pull a few things from around the house that sort of "fit" the vibe I was getting from the windows.

This is what I started with.  The charcoal gray sofa stays.  I pulled this table from the bedroom upstairs.  I recently bought a pair of large cast iron pineapple finials on eBay and I put one of them on the table.  (I love architectural salvage!)

I added a mid-Century abstract drawing on the wall and threw a little cubist drawing in a gold frame into the mix.  The placement might change but I'm just looking for things that fit my vision.  I think a few Snug Harbor Farm topiaries would be great too.

I also love the combination of gray and brown and I think a little wood would warm up the gray and cream.

I'm really loving these Louis chairs...

...maybe with something modern and graphic like this Kelly Wearstler print.

The backs of the chairs would face the wall and would almost never be seen so I'd be tempted to do something totally unexpected on the back of the chair like this print from Wendy Lewis' Textile Trunk.

...or maybe I could cut the front off of some Paul Smith shirts and have the buttons go straight down the back.  That would be unexpected!

I can also envision the walls paneled out with mouldings...

...and a pale grisaille mural inside the panels...

...with rusty industrial pieces hung right over it.

That's what I'm thinking today.  Tomorrow it could be this...

I think I need a designer to reign me in.