ORC Week 6: Original Ceiling

Alright, guys, it’s a good time to talk about the coolest thing in this room, the original blue ceiling in the master bedroom, and to wrap up a few of my feelings about joining this big, community-driven challenge to change a room in your home.

Before the ORC.

When we first toured our home in spring 2012, we liked it a lot. I mean, here was a 1900 home that had been mostly renovated; new roof, new windows, bathroom added. All the BIG projects were done, but there was a lot of room for making the house flow better, adding storage, making it simpler, adding another bathroom, etc.

One thing that just floored me, though, was the blue ceiling in the master bedroom. We’re not really sure what makes it blue, whether it’s milk paint or a glaze, but it’s every color of blue and a whole bunch of the green ones, too. I love to just lay there and look at it, and with one glance during our home tour, I was pretty well sold on the house.

What we couldn’t believe was when the renovator told us that he had found it under old paneling on the ceiling, and that most of the people who helped him on the house wanted him to take it down. What? I’m so glad he made the obviously way better choice to leave it up.

Move-in weekend. I should mention the floors are also original and have tons of cracks. They are cold in the wintertime, but beautiful!

I won’t deny, though, that the ceiling has puzzled me for a long time. I never knew how to decorate around it, and thus ended up with a super-blue room (first photo in the post). I’m starting to get it, though. I thought the only way to deal with it was to make the room super blue.

Turns out, the blue goes with anything and everything, as long as you find ways to pull it off the ceiling. I’m doing my darnedest to bring some other colors in this time, and I’m doing it though accessories that have both the ceiling turquoise blue and other colors or textures. Additionally, I learned from this room that a neutral background is almost required when you have a ceiling like this. (That is, unless you’re a decorator who does bright colors everywhere, and to you I say, kudos! I just can’t pull that off.)


I think that the blog world, Pinterest, and magazines make you think that people who are good at making beautiful homes are just inherently good at it and they never make mistakes. However, I’ve learned one thing about the design process: it’s full of mistakes. If you can keep them from being expensive, then great, but you will make mistakes. I’m okay with my first attempt in this room, but having owned a house for 5 years now, and spent a whole lot of time thinking about how I want our home to feel and function, I want to improve it. I joined the ORC to force myself to bring who we are now to this room, and it’s so close!

Anyway, back to bringing down the blue. I chose some particular things for this room to pull the blue off the ceiling. I’ve talked about a few and left a few out. First, there’s the artwork. I chose this print to tie the blue of the ceiling to the black of the star chart (I featured all of this a couple weeks ago here).

I also sewed some pillows that have a bright floral pattern on them, adding some red, black, green, and grey. They bring the blue off the ceiling, add pretty pattern, and even tie it all to the dark olive of the iron bed and the green/grey of the closet wall.


Finally, I purchased a handmade, fair trade basket from this site, and it has the prettiest swirls of blue and olive green in it, all while adding the warmth of the natural weave.

I featured the baskets in my mood board a few weeks ago.

The best part about this plan is that I get to let the ceiling still be one of the focal points of the room, but I get to enhance it by pulling the color off the ceiling and through the rest of the furnishings. I’m so excited to see it all pulled together; I told myself I wasn’t allowed to put everything up and style the room until this weekend because I wanted to see it all at once.

ORC logo

I’m so happy I joined this challenge; it forced me to think about some things I’ve always done but never known why. It made me think about all the angles in the room. I had to nail down my style a bit more than I have in the past, and because I wanted to either make the furnishings or buy them FROM makers, I forced myself to take a few risks (buying a ton of fabric for curtains, for instance) and then follow through on my design choices. The whole experience has made me more confident and excited than I’ve ever been when it comes to making our home what I know it can be.


I’m definitely up for this challenge again someday. Now, go check out all the awesome designers and guest participants’ projects! I’ll see you next week for the big show!

(P.S. After the big reveal next week, I’m going to keep up with the blogging. I’ve been sewing some Christmas decorations that I’m so excited about, and I can’t wait to share them!)



2 thoughts on “ORC Week 6: Original Ceiling”

  1. That ceiling is beautiful! The walls really let it stand out. I really like your rug choice, too.
    And ughhh yessss I’ve made so many mistakes, both expensive and annoying.
    I’m looking forward to seeing your reveal!

    1. It’s funny- the color’s not all that far off from yours! By the way, I love your old home restoration. This one had all the dirty work on it done and we’ve just been building cosmetic things into it…but I can’t wait for the day we tackle one. Not that it isn’t an assload of work…but I’m up for it!

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