Thursday, May 19, 2011

Phasing Out the Plaid

I finally did it.  I've been talking about this for years and I finally did it.
I ordered slip covers to cover our plaid couches.

Pictured:  The plaid sofa.  Also, David showing Cooper how to steal cars and punch hookers.  Wholesome family programming on the Playstation.  Poor Coop-doesn't he look confused?
These couches came with the husband, and (unlike the cute husband) they are an eyesore to me.  David bought these couches when he was furnishing his house as a young bachelor and he evidently felt that he needed to assert his masculinity by buying everything in plaid.

I'm not kidding.

Plaid sofas, plaid bed spreads (guest room AND his room), plaid placemats, plaid towels, plaid curtains.

OK, the curtains were solid.  But seriously.  Everything else was plaid.

These sofas are comfortable, but the plaid is just not my style.  I like patterns--stripes, florals, jacquard, chevron--but this plaid is just not my favorite.  It just makes me thinking of a log cabin--these plaids would look right at home in front of a stone fireplace in a log cabin somewhere.  But I do not live in a log cabin.  Also, we watched This American Life (you can instant stream through Netflix) and in the episode about the guy who lives in Salt Lake City and looks for dudes with beards to model for him in Biblical tableaus so that he can paint them, his girlfriend's parents get interviewed.  They are devout Mormons and they have the same plaid couch.  So, our couch is famous.  And it's also Mormon.

Cooper sleeping on our Mormon couch.  GO CARDS!
Anyway, the couch is wonderful in that its plaid upholstery hides all manner of stains so we can eat in front of the TV if we like (and we do like, especially since I use TV as a mind-numbing pain reliever these days).  It's also great because we have given up on disciplining the wildabeasts that we house, so the dogs make themselves at home on the sofas (Cooper snuggles with David and me on the big couch, Little Mac prefers to have the love seat to herself).

She's a small dog, but she needs her space.
Considering that our living room decor includes bobbleheads and autographed baseballs, I think that when you put the plaid couches and the big TV in the mix, the decorating aesthetic in our living room can only be described as frat house meets log cabin meets Mormon tabernacle.  And (this may come as a shock) that is simply not an accurate reflection of my personal style.

I would LOVE to buy new furniture but furniture is expensive.  And the truth is, I'd rather buy plane tickets than new sofas.  Plus, David (ever practical) insists that someday we'll move into a house with a basement and these plaid sofas will be perfect for the basement and there's no reason to get rid of them since they are comfortable and in good shape.  (Except that they are PLAID).

So I am in the process of making over the living room.  As inexpensively as possible.  With cream-colored slipcovers (so as to best blend with the fur-babies) and cute throw pillows and some rearranging of what goes on the walls.  That may be the trickiest part.  I'm kind of tired of the stuff we have up right now, and I think moving some things around would make them feel fresh, but I always stress about where to hang things (including a case of autographed baseballs).  I also want to repaint, but David is not a fan of that idea, so it just depends on how motivated I get.

I'm going to save the big reveal until it's all completed (and don't hold your breath... doing this on the cheap requires patience!).  And no, I'm not kicking out the bobbleheads even though they are threatening to outnumber the space in their special glass case.

So many bobbleheads... so few decorating options.
 Right now, my focus is on improving the look of the slipcovers by customizing them as necessary (I may add some velcro to help them fit snugly in certain places).  I also want to re organize the barrister bookcase so that the shelf we have designated for Eliza's baby book and memory box and other things looks more attractive.  Then I'll pick out the perfect pillows (I might make my own, but I'm also going to be scouring Etsy).  I'm hoping it will all be finished by the end of the summer. 

In the meantime, I'm going to make the most of this distraction.


  1. Lol at "frat house meets log cabin meets Mormon Tabernacle"! When we got married we moved Ryan into my house in the back of my Dodge Neon. He didn't come with much.

    Also, your description of all the plaid made me think of Trey McDougal in Sex and the City, but David sounds like a MUCH more in-tune husband than he was!

  2. Hurray for distraction! That's a lot of plaid - good luck with the phase out. I hope it's done before your patience is too sorely tested.

    Also, how can I like you so much when you're a Cardinals fan? Must be a testament to your wit and charm :)

  3. This post gave me a good chuckle. I remember that episode of This American Life, although the couch is not included in that memory. I have been gently but relentlessly gnawing away at Leif's reluctance to buy a new couch. Ours is The Brown Beast. It is really long and at 5'11 I can comfortably stretch out. But it is so very huge and so very brown.

    I did just buy new curtains and that has somewhat distracted me from my mission of a new couch.

  4. What is it with men and their obsession with plaid?? My husband threatened to wear an all plaid suit at our wedding because he though it'd be hilarious. He quickly changed his mind when I said he'd be there alone if that were the case..

    I love distractions, though. Big and small. Sometimes I use the tiniest, most insignificant errand a big deal and make it last as long as possible just to numb the mind a bit (think: sitting at the post office on a Saturday at noon for 2 hours, instead of just getting a stamp at the grocery store and popping a bill in the mail box). So I hope this helps keep you busy for a while. xo

  5. No offense, but that couch is ugly - what is it with men and their bad taste (well, straight men, I suppose)? My husband`s things were pretty hideous, thankfully, he wasn`t attached to any of then :)

  6. Wow.. that is one plaid couch ;o)
    I was in Marshalls/Homegoods this week and saw TONS of decorative pillows.. if you have one by you you may want to look!

  7. The plaid is ugly, so good work on the slipcovers. I may have one of the few straight guys who would NEVER buy a plaid couch, but every home decorating decision in our house is a massive negotiation process. (He would prefer we lived in a all white minimalist box, but I stubbornly insist that it's not practical for the 2 adults in the house let alone the small person and future potential small people we hope to have).

    Enjoy your new distraction.

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  9. They may be ugly, but they sleep well.

  10. oh my god! i have the same couches and im trying to figure out how to cover them up and still make them look nice. they are such an eye sore. they make me feel like its christmas all year round