02 June 2010

What's In A Name?

When I was about 8 years old, I discovered (through jumping on my bed, tee-hee) that I could move my bed around the room if I tried really, really hard and put all my weight into it.  Wonder of wonders, I found I could move my big wooden dresser, too!  And so I did.  Every few months I'd switch the two pieces and move the small, modular, plastic shelves that lined the empty corners of my bedroom. 

Those plastic corner shelves were the "house" for my Barbie dolls.  I never played with the dolls themselves;  I was only concerned with where Barbie lived.   I didn't have the mansion or cottage you were supposed to buy for her, just my plastic shelves.  Each level was a separate room in her house.  I rearranged the furniture, hung "curtains" cut from my mother's fabric scraps, wove "rugs" out of my mother's yarn scraps, and "painted" the walls by hanging sheets of colored construction paper on the walls behind the shelving.   Over and over again I organized the dishes in the kitchen and the clothes in the closet;  and when I began learning to sew when I was 9 I immediately set about creating not only clothes for my Barbies, but throw blankets and rugs and pillows for her living room.

When I was in junior high, my mother asked me to pick out colors for my own room, as she was ready to repaint, and I was ecstatic.  I wish I had a picture of the 70s Apricot Atrocity that it had been before - I chose a cool, watery pale blue, and soft, deep blue fabric for the bedding and curtains.  That was the extent of the decor, but it was enough for me that I'd chosen the colors.  I loved it sooo much.  

I didn't really get into furniture and decorating until I was twenty-two, when I got disgusted with my cheap, ugly, salvaged furniture (all I could afford during my "starving student" phase), and decided I'd either have to learn to live with it or figure out how to make it better on my own to save money.   My first project was to spray-paint a small 3-drawer nightstand to cover up its fading, peeling finish;  from there I felt I could do anything if I just learned how, and soon spray-painting became repairing, refinishing, painting and staining, and then finally I took my act to the whole room instead of just a single piece at a time...and fell in love.

Ten years later, my house is one, big, ongoing art project, where the wall color changes once a year and half the furniture was built with my own two hands - and I couldn't be happier with my hobbies.  But it all started with moving my bed around when I was little.  Nearly thirty years later, I'm still Pushing Furniture around.  :)

1 comment:

  1. Once a year? Methinks you've way under-counted, my dear. Hee hee.

    ReplyDelete

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