Make It Pretty

My house is lived in. Less so since my kids have all moved out, but still.

Over the years we’ve accumulated stuff large and small. I have the coffee table my parents bought when I was 10. During summer vacations it hosted marathon games of Rummy 500, which always began at the opening music of “Match Game” with Gene Rayburn and lasted all the way through “Dark Shadows.”

I have a lovely antique oval table that my mom rescued from her mother-in-law’s house. It was a mess, stained with nail polish from a million careless manicures, sporting a warped top. Mom painstakingly refinished it, learning how to fix the warp too, and commissioned my dad to repair one of the legs.  It has beautiful curved legs and ornate designs and it was my job to dust it. How I hated that table. Then it was mine and I made my daughter dust it. How she hated that table.

When my kids were pre-teens I found a gorgeous ”” and large ”” farmhouse table. When we put in both leaves, we can seat 10 for dinner ”” 12 if we use the piano bench. We even did some remodeling to widen the archway in our dining area to accomodate such crowds. I had visions of being the ‘Thanksgiving Mom’ who hosted the out-of-state friends of her college-aged children. Alas, that never happened, as my daughter was one of the out-of-state kids who needed a Thanksgiving Mom of her own and my boys joined the Navy. Don’t feel sorry for me and my farmhouse table, though … we have both hosted a zillion fun events over the years.

And now I have a new piece of furniture ”” this baker’s rack ”” but I need some design help with it. We bought it mainly for the wine rack below the brown wooden shelf (surprise!), but there are things I can’t quite make a decision about.

See the two half-circle shelves? See how they’re empty?

That’s because I don’t quite know what to use them for. They’re also a weird size. At their widest points they’re 5″ x 11″. And did I mention they’re half circles?! They’re movable, though … I can use both or just one on any of those four bars across. Or neither.

So here’s my question … what would you do with them? Help me make it pretty! (And yes, my house is purple.)

7 thoughts on “Make It Pretty”

  1. I’m maintain the liquor theme. Two full sized wine glasses in the middle of each shelf flanked by two of those little bitty brandy snifters. Elegant and practical.

  2. I’d remove them and use the hooks to hang things in that center space — like bunches of herbs or chilis or garlic braids, that kind of thing. And I’d relocate the wine that’s on the table surface, and use that surface for cookbooks (some stacked, some standing).

    (I like the purple!)

  3. I would either find lots of fun/funky hot sauce bottles or get some unusual/pretty bottles to put herbs in for the top one. For the bottom one I might get a really cool set of kitchen towels and roll them up tightly and put them in upright – then you could grab one whenever you need it. Glasses will get dusty and if you cook a lot the grease will settle on them into an icky mess that you will have to clean when you want to use them. I would do something that was solid visually – if it is clear glass you will see the wrought iron behind it and it will look forever cluttered. That is why I think hot sauce bottles – they have brightly colored labels, are cheap and if you pack them tightly with the best part of the label showing it will be like a little found object art installation. Same with the towels and it is practical – if you are using the stuff in there and rotating through stuff doesn’t have time to accumulate dirt – a big problem in the kitchen!

  4. I would take out the half circles….they look cluttery to me and not very functional for small items. But I would probably research baker’s racks and see what the traditional display looks like. Not that you are traditional…or a baker….or an herbalist. But it might give you more ideas. I do like the kitchen towel display, but I’d probably put them on the hooks.

    Besides….you have way more wine than that, don’t you?

  5. Oh my gosh! Those are all really good ideas. Look at me now … all paralyzed by choices! Pondering and mulling … mulling and pondering … better have a glass of wine so I can clarify my thinking.

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