A Journal of Detailed Moments

Welcome to the third reincarnation of smallrooms®. This new version doesn’t start with a fancy entry page, but instead opens directly with the journal. The entire site, for the most part, has the same information and images as the 2012 design. But in this reincarnation, the images are larger and sharper, and the overall design is cleaner and less blog-like. Additionally, the copy is set with a sophisticated web font at a larger and looser scale, making it much easier to read. Please remember that smallrooms® is a journal and will always be an evolving work-in-progress.

Interior Design

Ornamental Knickknacks

Ever since my kitchen was remodeled in 2006, I have kept Betta fish bowls on the lower two shelves on each side of my sink. However keeping one Betta per shelf (4 bowls total) without a companion just for decorative purposes didn’t seem right to me. Recently I decided not to replace them as they passed on. I have exchanged my fishbowls for additional Fenton milk glass pieces. There may be sophisticates out there that may consider this decorative choice a bit twee, but Fenton glass has the right vibe for my kitchen and is VERY affordable.

Film: Design & Architecture

The Umbrellas of Cherbourg (1964)

Les Parapluies de Cherbourg was a worldwide hit when it was first released and was an interesting experiment in which the entire dialog was sung similar in style to an opera. Michel Legrand created the wall-to-wall score, and the film’s director Jacques Demy provided the sung dialog. This style along with the film’s candy-like colors would seem to suggest a sweet featherweight romance, but “Umbrellas” is unexpectedly sad and sage.

Country Retreat

Tumble Moon (Update 11)

The bed alcove upstairs.

This update is three and a half months late. Not much has occurred since this visit at the very end of October, because we’ve been on hold waiting for the septic system to be installed. And the reason for this delay was because of a major communication hiccup between contractors. The electrical trench and water pipe were installed right through the area where the septic field was suppose to be. So we all got together and discussed the pros and cons of viable placement options. Meaning… Once we agreed on the new location, new plans had to be redrawn and then permitted. Then the holidays happened, folks got sick, and the weather has been working against us. Long story short, three point five months later, the septic system has now been installed, but we’re waiting on the electrician to provide an electrical outlet in the pump house so we can plug in a heat lamp to keep the water from freezing and bursting pipes.

Just Because

Sunday Afternoon Time Waster

Want to waste some time? Then just click on the center play arrow.

I had this itch to scratch, which was to learn more about iMovie while creating something pretty. The process included converting an animated gif to video, selecting the music, adding the audio, applying transitions, fade-ins, fade-outs, and many other experiments. Unfortunately, iMovie is limited in its editing features, and I had to upload to Vimeo in order to have a choice on the thumbnail/poster image and then download. I need to learn Adobe Premiere Pro ASAP.

Just Because

Tricks O’ Treats

Halloween 2017. All items were purchased from Oriental Trading.

What’s in the bag this year? One mummy gummy, one orange glow bracelet, circus fleas, one alien in a test tube full of slime, two chocolate skulls, and last but not least, a glow-in-the-dark stretchy flying snot rocket. The snot rocket should come with directions but doesn’t, so watch out for pete’s sake.

Country Retreat

Tumble Moon (Update 10)

This recent photo is more about the sunflowers than it is about the house’s exterior updates.

Here’s the progress as of Friday, September 15. The interiors have now been painted, the stair bannisters and counter tops are now in place, the water pipes are now connected to the well, and the house now has electricity. The tiling of the kitchen backsplash, bathrooms, and hearth had just began on the day I was there, and as of last week, Friday, October 6, all of this had been completed. This week, the light fixtures and door hardware, which are there and waiting, should be installed, and I will also be ordering all the appliances. Unfortunately, we’ll have to wait to place them until after the floor has been stained. The septic system should also be installed soon. The poor guy who will be doing this had to wait until all the water pipe and electrical trenching had been completed.

Film: Design & Architecture

And Then There Were None (miniseries)

Lonely setting for Agatha Christie’s “And Then There Were None.”

And Then There Were None is a 2015 British-American murder mystery based on Agatha Christie’s novel of the same name. Rewritten and adapted for the small screen by Sarah Phelps, the three-part series needed to reflect the subject matter, wrong-doers being picked off one by one on a remote island. The house and its interiors played a very important part by evoking an eerie, but elegant, atmosphere. So I purchased the DVD in order to capture stills and study the wonderful interiors. I also wondered how the production designer Sophie Becher and her team accomplished this. What I discovered, I will now share with you.

Country Retreat

Tumble Moon (Update 9)

This fifth site plan, with the exception of some adjustments, is what we have finally decided on.

The fifth and final site plan concept. The wood steps down from the porch have to end in a wood landing because the landing will be about 2′ above the slope below. This is too much grade change for the lower steps. From that landing down to the parking area are formed concrete steps with stone veneer applied to the top surface. There are two identical runs of steps (4 risers and 3 treads) and one 4′ x 4′ landing. We may not need the retaining wall you see near the bottom of the slope, because the lower steps are now going to be formed concrete.

Michael Parkey, the landscape architect, is currently tweaking this concept, and the final site plan should be ready for me to show you in a couple of weeks. Stay tuned.

Country Retreat

Tumble Moon (Update 8)

Because the sunlight was so harsh, the garage was the best structure to showcase our chosen paint colors in a photograph.

Here’s the progress as of Thursday, June 29. All the cabinetry had been installed, and the carpenter was informed on how to proceed with the trim work. The painter applied floor stain samples and interior paint colors for our approval. Unfortunately the floor stain was not at all what it was suppose to be, but the selected interior wall, ceiling, and window/door trim colors were perfect. The design and materials for the front steps and the descent down to the driveway were finalized, and one final site survey was done. I know I’m forgetting several somethings, but the following photographs should illustrate how far things have progressed.

Country Retreat

Tumble Moon (Update 7)

Since this is my favorite one, of course it would be the most expensive. Only one car will be parked in front, so it would be in position 2. I don’t want a car blocking the steps. And if there is a second car, it can park in front of or in the garage.

My landscape architect’s accompanying letter:
Attached are three sketches for the driveway, parking, and porch steps.
There are two major problems that we are trying to solve. The first is the elevation change from the finish floor height (FF) of the house (assumed to be 100.0′) and the garage and parking area. The difference is about 10 feet. The second is the tight maneuvering space for cars between the garage and the house.