We do not have a big sweeping staircase. We have a quiet stairwell, tucked away unobtrusively. But the ceilings are very high, and there is a dramatic, tall window that floods the landings with light.
When we bought the house, a shiny brass chandelier hung in the stairwell.
I did not care for the shiny brass, but I didn't mind the shape at all. So we sprayed it white. And by "we," I mean the professional painters who were busy painting almost every inch of the house after we purchased.
The matte white looked crisp and fresh, which just made the old light stems look dingy. And it all looked a little...bare.
So I bought chandelier shades (in white - naturally!) from Crate & Barrel.
And that was how it stayed for the next 14 months or so. It was always meant to be a temporary fix. Since my home design philosophy is simply Fill the place with stuff you love and hope it matches, then I planned to just wait until I found a chandelier I loved.
And lo and behold if I wasn't walking down the street last month and saw a chandelier in the window at Mortise & Tenon. I loved it, snapped a pic on my cell to text to The Gorilla, and went back the next day where they gave me 15% off the floor display.
And it made me so happy. The style matches the house perfectly.
But, the whole look of the stairwell was still too sparse. So we took two photographs that meant a lot to us (one of our favorite houseguest and another of a family member that we're still grieving) and blew them up to 4x6 and had them framed in simple chunky black frames.
Suddenly it's a whole new space. Still light and airy - almost gallery feeling - but with pieces that are visually appealing and meaningful to us.
I'm glad we waited until we knew just what we wanted there. I'm always tempted to make things look good RIGHT THIS MINUTE, when it's really more satisfying to take your time and let things come together.