Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Renovation Diary: Chandelier Update

The first time my husband saw Rattlebridge's foyer, he spread his arms as
wide as he could. Touching the door with one hand and the staircase with
the other, he said, "I'm a big guy. I might get bigger. This house won't work."
Then he looked up at the chandelier and shuddered.
"I'm creeped out," he said. "Can we go home?"
We left.

I hoped that Will would come to love Rattlebridge as much as Bandy and I did
(and still do). From previous renovations, I knew that Will had to see something
to believe it. Each time we went to Rattlebridge, he would look at the chandeliers
and shake his head. "They're not staying," I said, but he didn't believe me.

Sixteen months later, Will and I stood in Rattlebridge's revamped, almost-finished foyer.
He kept scratching his beard. "I can't remember how the rooms looked before we started."
I'd brought "before" pictures, just to jog his memory. He looked at the photos, then glanced
at the new chandeliers. But he didn't speak.
"Don't you remember?" I asked. "We punched out the wall and opened up the space."
"It was MY idea," Bandwidth said.
Will said nothing. Just kept looking at the pictures.

I waited. I wasn't in a hurry.
I'd bought the chandeliers last winter, during a sale; but construction was going on, so Medana, our contractor's assistant, kindly stored the huge boxes at her office. A few weeks ago, when she told me the electricians were scheduled to hang the chandeliers, I bought two medallions online. I wanted them to have a bit of a patina, so we painted them the color of the beadboard.

Here's the dining room medallion (22"):

Will put down the "before" pictures and looked around the foyer.
What was he thinking? Did he want to go home?

Weren't we home? Kinda? Just a little?

Home means different things to different people; one of those tomato/tomahato things.
But to me, that word always falls so sweetly on my ears and wraps itself around me,
warm and snug as a wool tartan blanket.

Home is a state of mind and a state of being.

 More silence.
Bandwidth edged into the room. "You better like the chandy, Dad.
You picked it out!"
Well, it's true.
You see, I had planned to buy a Swedish style chandelier, but when I
showed a photo to Will, he said, "It looks like a spider is doing push-ups. I
don't want that hanging over my food!"
So I kept looking. Finally I found two fixtures--one large, one small--that
we liked. And they were on sale.
But now, Will seemed to have forgotten the spider.
I took a peek at the smaller chandelier and medallion.

Mike Cox, our contractor, had already hung the chandelier before Will and I
had arrived. Mike had even brought my new-old dining room table
(another sale item that I'd bought eons ago). He wanted to make sure
that the height of the chandelier looked right with the table--and in the room.

"It's perfect," I said, imagining myself setting the table.

After a while, I realized that Will had not commented. With him,
that's usually a good sign.

Mike Cox watched from the balcony, trying not to smile. Finally he called down,
"You know you love it, Dr. West."

"It's nice," my husband said, which is Will-Speak for, You had me at chandy.

Thanks for visiting Rattlebridge Farm!


  1. yeah he loved it! are the movers booked now ;-)

  2. When is moving day? We are all anxious to see this house once all your furniture and accessories are in place. I love ceiling medallions, the chandy is great, too! Great choice!!
    Love how Rattlebridge Farmhouse is coming together, will be lovely I am sure.

    Mary L

  3. What are you doing in my house? :)



  4. Your chandys (chandies?) are TO DIE FOR!

    The house looks so awesome, just wow!

    Doc, she had The Vision!

    Rock on, Rattlebridge! Whoot!

  5. Wow, beyond fabulous. Love the table too!!

  6. Most gorgeous, Michael Lee! Cute story about your mister too. Your new home is so beautiful and I'll bet you're just itching to get in there! :)
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia :)

  7. Love is such a simple word for that beauty. Its like night and day. Perfect!

  8. I love the transformation! "Spider doing pushups" - how descriptive and funny!

  9. It's gorgeous, both of them:)

  10. Wow! Talk about eye candy!!! :)

  11. Beautiful...can't wait to see that dining room when completed and filled with your furniture!

  12. You're doing an amazing job!Isn't it great to have such a contributing spouse? LOL! I can so relate.

    - The Tablescaper

  13. You had me at the view from the foyer into the dining room. Seeing that before and after is OMG amazing! I'm so excited about your renovation diary posts. I anxiously await each report, and love the changes that you've made as a family. Gorgeous. Gorgeous. Gorgeous. Brilliant job!

  14. I like it too! In fact, I love it all!

  15. So beautiful, love the chandy!! Show us more when you can.

  16. Sigh...I have serious chandy envy!

  17. Wow, that chandy is gorgeous!!

  18. I love how you opened up the space from the foyer to the dining room and the columns flanking the entrance! The non-spider-like :) chandy is gorgeous!

  19. It is nice! Love the DR table too. Never doubt yourself!

  20. Whew! You had me holding me holding my breath there, Michael. So glad the good doctor approves. They really are lovely.