Like a beautiful woman, the sunroom risks not having to develop a personality- the romantic view through the windows is just too gorgeous. You can float away in it dreamily, like a bubble suspended in nature. But I want to push it; my concept is to play up the schoolmaster history- look for filing cabinets, an old desk, vintage educational charts. Sometimes I call it the schoolroom instead of the sunroom.
Not having all the furniture yet, I start playing around with textures, colours. You can have a theory but rooms take on a logic of their own; they reject some things, embrace others. The space starts to assert its own personality. A list of its favorite things: op shop oil paintings, mellow textured wood, heavy substantial chairs, pine cones, rag rugs, flowers from the garden. In the latest Kinfolk magazine, the statement that a handcrafted thing in every room makes it feel like a home. In the sunroom it’s a wonderful embroidered cushion from my mother. More finds- a painter’s bench found in the street, educational posters from some unknown Eastern European country, the remains of an old cuckoo clock, a bush table made for a recent Australian film.
A new/old phone from Papier d’ Amour. Looks like the old thing, but with a hash key- necessary for a location where a lot of mobiles don’t work. The receiver is unexpectedly heavy when you pick it up – such a surprising change from the lightweight & throwaway. It reminds me of a friend’s book on product design from the former East Germany; everything was so heavy looking. Something like a cheese grater monumental & built to last centuries.
A little bit of Elvis, just to stop everything getting too 1940s. A gift of some authentic 45 albums from a friend. In a great interview the production designer of “ Amelie” said that they would always throw something unexpected in, like a microwave- just to stop it all getting too predictable.
Later, walking down an old country road,I realize that without knowing it, the yellows and pinks of the sunset and the sky outside have inspired the colours of the palette of the sunroom.