Carolina Bed and Breakfast

>Renovating the Carolina Bed & Breakfast: The Dining Room

>The Dining Room before painting

The Dining Room with its new color!

Many years ago (about 25 to be exact) James and I moved out of a small semi-furnished apartment in Paris and arrived in Hong Kong with a tired old couch and a few pictures to our name and not much else in the way of furnishing. James had taken over the lease on a beautiful spacious apartment on the Peak overlooking the harbor, and I remember standing in the empty living room, looking into the empty dining room, before walking into the empty master bedroom next to the empty guest room which was next to the empty room for Sarah, and thinking: “Help!” I never forgotten what the interior decorator we hired told me when I confessed how overwhelmed I was. She told me that the most difficult thing to do was to get started, but that once we had even one piece to work with it would all come together.

I have to admit, I had been feeling a little bit that way about the Carolina. It’s such a lovely house, I am excited to make it even better than it is. As a part of the kitchen renovation we will be redoing the guests’ pantry which is just off t dining room. The pantry is so close to the dining room that it is almost an alcove to it and I thought they should be coordinated. So I took a deep breath and dived into the project. It wasn’t much, just repairing and repainting the ceiling, a new color for the walls and new shutters and shades, but the result is so wonderful that it has inspired me to move on into the living room.

One of the words our guests repeatedly use when reviewing the inn is “cozy” and I am trying to keep that in the forefront as I look for ideas. Although the house was built in 1901, she is in the Arts and Crafts style rather than the Victorian. It’s a cleaner look, more suited to the mountains, less fussy and cluttered than the Victorian style. This makes the Carolina Bed & Breakfast stand out from its peers here in Asheville and I am hoping to keep the distinction clear. I think we have achieved this in the dining room, now watch this space for the parlors!