14 July 2011

Zen - well, almost...

Remember my first blog on Amsterdam (click here rutgerhopster.com)? The challenge was to create a soothing and quiet place, break up the tunnel vision of the room and provide storage space. 

I installed (yes, I know how to drill, saw and hammer...) zebrano-veneered panels. They look as if they hang from the dado rail. A free-standing cupboard next to the sofa (made from the same panels) separates the seating area from the dining area. It is open on the side facing the wall, so you don't see the papers and junk, unless you peek behind it...

I added really great directional down lighters. They are the spotlights often used in shop windows and provide dramatic lighting.

Also new are the rug, table and chair.  

The study repeats the zebrano paneling and the shelves in the sitting room.

The painting  and the Giacometti-look-alike now take on museum-qualities. The same down lighters provide great backdrop lighting.

The Biedermeier cupboard hides the second door which led into the hall way.
It was surprising to see how all of these elements took on a new lease of life, simply by better arranging the furniture, giving the space more flow and clearing some of the junk away that had accumulated haphazardly over the years.

Oh, and we like Ikea! Just adapt whatever you buy in the shop to your needs: I put these cd-dvd storage cabinets on a plinth, the same height as the skirting board. And fixed them flush with the wood panelling.

This room is work in progress. The drill gave up on me. 
Once her ladyship is back from horse riding in Mongolia, I have to return and fix the shelves on this wall, install the bench opposite it and more lighting. Also, the dining area still needs sorting out, the red velvet sofa still has to be sold (any takers?).

And then the curtains have to be measured, made and installed (and no, that is not me; that has been outsourced).

But so far, this place has really improved. Check out for more photos in a few weeks time...



  1. WOW - this is an amazing transformation!!! I can't wait to see more photos!!! And lots of them, please :-) You're truly giftet!


  2. Indeed, what a transformation!

    The colour scheme is great- very well balanced.

    Is the rug simply bound carpet? I like the idea of bound carpet as an alternative to a custom-sized area rug.


  3. Hi Kieran - Thanks for your comments! The rug is a simple bound carpet which we ordered at Carpetright (Carpetright.co.uk). They are also in other countries. We wanted something not too expensive, in wool, and monochrome, and their grey was the right tone to go with the floor and mustard coloured curtains. The company offered several types of rims and we went for a stitched one in the same colour as the carpet.


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