1. Sarah
    August 6, 2013 @ 10:20 am

    I’m loving Elegancy, the drag-queen raccoon. I might have to steal this concept in order to explain my need for a handbag and pair of shoes each week. May Elegancy live long and prosper (and get lots of shiny fancy things from Craigslist)!


  2. sue moore
    August 6, 2013 @ 10:25 am

    Victoria – thank you for making me laugh! It’s a great way to start off my day.


  3. Mary Lee
    August 6, 2013 @ 10:25 am

    Ohmygawd, Victoria, I would have helped your tote those wonderful mirrors with my own flabby arms, but are you serious about these chairs?!

    I certainly am not a “woman’s place is in the kitchen” kind of girl, but Paul does have a point there. I suppose you could build a kitchen island held up by the obelisks. Compromise is good.


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      August 6, 2013 @ 10:27 am

      No, the chairs I do NOT need… but would buy them if it meant getting the pillars. AND? Your solution to use them as island supports WILL be my argument to Paul… if they ever answer me.


      • Denise
        August 6, 2013 @ 2:55 pm

        Those pillars can be purchased at the Swap Shop or Festival Flea market in Ft. Lauderdale…. If you want to pay too much they also have them on Las Olas Blvd. for tourist consumption. They are actually very nice quality repros but a bit too much for daytime.


  4. Jacqui
    August 6, 2013 @ 10:26 am

    Victoria! Don’t let Elegancy talk you into buying that furniture! It’s only home should be in a faux Louis XIV castle in the backwoods of Texas whose owner is a reclusive eccentric oil baron who thinks he’s living in the 1700’s. He hasn’t cut his toenails for 15 years. You don’t want to be THAT GUY do you? Besides, Paul would fall. over. dead.


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      August 6, 2013 @ 10:36 am

      I could get with all of that… with the exception of the toenail thing. But I promise that I don’t want any of it other than the pillars.


  5. Jenn
    August 6, 2013 @ 10:29 am

    Dang, those pillars are extraordinary!! So is the mirror behind them.

    But really, the kitchen may be FINE, but you can make it so much better, i.e. shinier. Can you imagine it?? It is ELEGANCY talking. Those pillars NEED a space in your house. Maybe in your shiny new kitchen…

    Liberace may be dead but his furniture lives on…


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      August 6, 2013 @ 10:33 am

      You get the comment award :
      Liberace may be dead but his furniture lives on…

      So sad I did not think of this myself.


      • Jenn
        August 6, 2013 @ 10:45 am

        I have not ever received a comment award before. Thanks! You have way too much on your mind to think of some pithy comment. I, on the other hand, am sitting here living vicariously through you… our house remodel includes three kids, two dogs and a cat. And not nearly enough shiny things for me!! We are almost done (after 12 years) but I am sure that once that last bit of trim is up, we will decide to redo the basement into a swanky billiards room or something. It will really never end VEB….


        • Callie
          August 6, 2013 @ 1:13 pm

          You are quite correct Jenn. The renovation work never ends, until you purchase your next home, and start all over again. We spent 20+ years renovating a circa 1895 Victorian, our entire married life up to that point. You are for all intensive purposes, never done. My husband says, “When you finish remodeling, you turn around and start remodeling what you already remodeled.” Darn it if he wasn’t right. (Hate it when that happens!) Now we live in a 70’s ranch, and we have more projects we need to do here too, that lead to yet more projects. It never ends.


      • AmandaG
        August 6, 2013 @ 11:06 am

        I second the award nomination!


  6. tracey
    August 6, 2013 @ 10:32 am

    Elegancy… Words like that almost make it worth a trip to the land of Craigslist. Almost.


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      August 6, 2013 @ 10:38 am

      It boggles the mind how someone could come up with a CL listing that is both totally accurate AND totally hilarious. Plus, I’m pretty sure she was serious.


      • Lana
        August 20, 2017 @ 11:29 am

        Wait, the CL advertiser is a woman?! When I read the ad I pictured an elderly gay gentleman who lived with his mother until she died and now he’s finally downsizing and ready to let the furniture go. But he’s ambivalent about it, thus the lack of response to you.

        I am always so excited to see a new post from you, Victoria. Although I generally lurk and don’t comment, please know that you have a huge fan out here in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest! Thank you for the laughs and amazing reno stories and pictures.


  7. Gay
    August 6, 2013 @ 10:49 am

    As one who survived the era from which those 14 “interesting” living room pieces came, I can answer your what-are-those-towers question. They are plant stands and, in that era, usually held big, ol’, ugly, plastic ferns.


  8. PJ
    August 6, 2013 @ 10:49 am

    In order to stall, so that we can have more posts to read, why don’t you just use http://fortheloveofahouse.blogspot.com/2011/01/kitchen.html as a template using glitter and gold crayons to put in all your sparkly bits. That should give Paul something to chew on while the raccoon gnaws.

    Thanks for the post, and good luck with Elegancy.


    • Siouxzie Q
      August 6, 2013 @ 11:49 am

      Thanks for this link. Serious eye porn.


      • JennStone
        August 7, 2013 @ 8:48 am

        Isn’t eye porn just, you know, regular porn?


    • LaurieC
      August 6, 2013 @ 12:59 pm

      Thank you for that link!! My soul LOVES that kitchen and all the areas around it. You made my day!


    • Nicole
      August 6, 2013 @ 2:07 pm

      Let’s ALL have that kitchen!


  9. Cam
    August 6, 2013 @ 10:58 am

    My five year old was looking over my shoulder while I was reading this post. When she saw the pillars her eyes got wide and she said: “Are those things holy?” I said, “What do you think?” and she answered “Yes” in an awed voice. It seems that I’m raising my own little raccoon…


  10. lynne hoover
    August 6, 2013 @ 11:00 am

    PLEASE make that Victorian whachamacallit in your living room fit into your kitchen. There HAS TO BE A WAY!


  11. Anne @ Planting Sequoias
    August 6, 2013 @ 11:11 am

    WHY must our men look so handsome doing construction-y things while they simultaneously dash our hopes and crush our dreams? Paul looks quite nice in his mask and sleeveless shirt.


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      August 6, 2013 @ 12:46 pm

      You’ve addressed something that I’ve identified before… where we will be angry with each other about something, but part of my brain will point out that Paul is sweaty and wielding power tools… and then I am distracted.

      The part that makes me even madder is how Paul is never distracted by thoughts of how attractive I am when mad and sweaty. Totally unfair.


  12. Nicki
    August 6, 2013 @ 11:23 am

    Absolutely boondoggled that owners of obelisks of awesomeness, will not reply. I see another racoon, with her arms firmly wrapped around said obelisks, explaining to HER husband that they cannot part with them….also explaining that she has NO idea why the internet is not working. (This can be the ONLY reason the seller would not reply….)
    On another note, those would make some kick ass end tables…albeit tall…


  13. Garden, Home and Party
    August 6, 2013 @ 11:24 am

    I’m speechless. The towers are a bit much for me but I’m certain you would make all of us wish we had thought of that…if you decide to keep with tradition, please use real ferns to top them, not plastic ones…if they ever respond. I recently sold something on eBay and the person never paid nor responded. I feel your pain.
    Get going on the kitchen, I can’t wait to see what great design ideas you come up with. Oh, and I too love for the love of a house…her kitchen is my favorite!


  14. Laura Kennedy
    August 6, 2013 @ 11:24 am

    Having absolutely no restraint whatsoever, and having Elegancy’s twin brother living in my own brain, I say take the entire suite and put it ALL in the kitchen.

    Problem solved.

    Now. Who among your readers Knows Somebody over at Craigslist? There has to be a way.


  15. Patience
    August 6, 2013 @ 11:36 am

    I guess $5,000 is a small price to pay for elegancy.


  16. Tina
    August 6, 2013 @ 11:43 am

    Nothing for it, you are just going to have to show up at their door and demand to be able to buy the pillars. Also, can’t you outsource your kitchen planning to one of your many devotees?


  17. Siouxzie Q
    August 6, 2013 @ 11:43 am

    Ah, Elegancy. The aptly named quixotic, lover-of-spangly-things in your head. Makes perfect sense to me. (I immediately envisioned Lafayette from True Blood in a Diamonique and coonskin cap.)

    Meanwhile, Paul ought to very careful what he asks for. Our kitchen remodel took a full year of our lives, replete with blood, sweat, and homicidal thoughts. Thankfully, everyone is still breathing and we now have humongous space featuring a 6′ x 10′ island (or as I like to call it, the “Frankenstein Embalming Table) and soooo many lovely EMPTY cabinets. Problem? My raccoon has grown exponentially and is constantly, relentlessly hyperventilating with a need to stockpile housewares. Seriously, if aliens landed to rob the world of creamy white porcelain platters, dishes, bowls, compotes, cakeplates…anything, my raccoon and I stand ready to replenish the planet.


  18. Emily
    August 6, 2013 @ 11:57 am

    You’ve got a difficult layout with that kitchen. Low windows, lots of doors, yikes!

    Is raising that window (with the micro in front of it) an option? Alternatively you can put a low cabinet in front of the window.

    Is your goal to create more counter space? Spruce it up?

    If it were my kitchen I would keep the general layout the same, increase counter space by either raising the window or lowering a cabinet, and possibly consider putting an extra cabinet on the other side of the window (where the old stub walls were). Then I would build the island out to incorporate the eating area. I would figure out a way to use cabinets under the island/eating area to give more storage space.

    Other than that I think putting in a cohesive floor (whatever material you choose) will go a long way to making the kitchen feel more ‘fine’ :).


  19. Delayna
    August 6, 2013 @ 11:59 am

    I just adore you! I have been having the most terrible morning, but Elegancy the drag queen raccoon has really brightened things right up! I don’t even care that I don’t know your horribly embarrassing thing, or that I know nothing of your kitchen plans. My own inner raccoon is rubbing its hands together in that super villain kind of way mumbling, “Get the pillars of dreams! Doooo iiiittt! Must live vicariously through you!”


  20. Lanora
    August 6, 2013 @ 12:27 pm

    Oh Victoria;

    Please, OH PLEASE… continue to work on your kitchen! Blog about ideas… I NEED them! I am purchasing a house, built in 1945… All the classic charm and elegance of the era, with absolutely no idea where to start decorating and embellishing the domain! I also have three children underfoot… all under the seasoned age of five. I MUST have simple, elegant ideas for our home. The children and I are craving culture… ambiance… and that delightful taste of artistry in our daily lives! How can we survive without it? How can you let my children’s lives be starved of that experience! You are starving my children of a life -a childhood – of a beautiful home… Think of the children!!!

    Ok, actually, I am. But in my defense I have no decorating chromosomes in my DNA… And yet I YEARN for them… increasingly… I am a Designer/Decorating Succubus … my LIFE depends upon ideas gleaned from those more talented than myself…

    So please; I earnestly beg of thee; follow thy husband’s instruction so I may learn the art and skill of remodeling a kitchen… a kitchen, in which I can feed and procure many feasts abounding in deliciousness – surrounded by artistry.


  21. Christine
    August 6, 2013 @ 12:39 pm

    Darlin, stop wasting your time on $5000 elegant monuments. This sounds like a FANTASTIC diy project at a much smaller cost and much less headache than 2 months of obsession over something that the people have already sold, or they are so are afraid of you that they will NEVER respond to your emails. Try Hobby Lobby for a place to start for pillars, some wooden frames glued on and some gold sparkly paint, voila! Elegant Goddess Pillars at a fraction of the cost and headache.


  22. Marian
    August 6, 2013 @ 12:40 pm

    Hey, I want that screen. And why haven’t you driven to the address?


  23. Cath
    August 6, 2013 @ 12:51 pm

    I love to read you, you make me smile out loud


  24. Anna
    August 6, 2013 @ 12:55 pm

    This weekend I considered buying a truck so I could pick up more Craigslist treasures more easily.

    This week 5 chairs that I absolutely NEEDED escaped because of my inability to procure a truck. I died a little inside.


  25. Kathie
    August 6, 2013 @ 1:49 pm

    You just tell him, Dear, that those obelisk-y things are going in the kitchen and your problem will be solved! because that would be some SERIOUS bling for the kitchen! 🙂


  26. Tyler J. Yoder
    August 6, 2013 @ 1:56 pm

    Ma chérie, has anyone applied for the actual position of Elegancy, yet? Because living in your head is sort of my dream job.


    • siouxzie Q
      August 6, 2013 @ 9:53 pm

      Tyler, I’ll arm wrestle you for that spot.


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      August 7, 2013 @ 1:28 pm

      I would hate for anyone as distinguished as yourself to see what a disaster the inside of my head is… I haven’t vacuumed in ages.


  27. Barb
    August 6, 2013 @ 2:20 pm

    I pay homage to all that you are. Amazing that your Raccoon, Elegance, and my Dragon, Seeker, have such similar traits.


  28. Apple Hill Cottage
    August 6, 2013 @ 2:42 pm

    I understand your hesitancy to start with the fine kitchen. It is months of messes — but you do get to eat out a lot. And most people would LOVE to have a sitting room attached to the kitchen. That is such a plus. So get going — get rid of the yellow walls– just primer them white. I’m sure that is what is clouding your thinking.
    And don’t spend the money on those columns! I’m with Christine — go buy some gold spray paint. $5000 will go pretty far with a gorgeous new kitchen sink…


  29. Darling Lily
    August 6, 2013 @ 2:46 pm

    Yes, they’re meant to Hold Things, but rather than something as plebian as ferns, I see one holding the crown the Universe will inevitably bring you and the other holding a tiara or two, the Necklace(s) of Invincibility or perhaps the Crown Jewels of Fancy.


  30. the misfit
    August 6, 2013 @ 3:00 pm

    This is hilarious. While I may also have a shiny-object-craving raccoon (I spent an UNREASONABLE amount of time stalking a woman who had the EXACT cabinet I needed for my tea and coffee, who would respond to an email and then vanish for a month and appeared to have some sort of mental problem. And then even after my rational mind realized I needed to look for a cabinet elsewhere, and even after I FOUND one, for FREE, I continued to mourn the loss of The Cabinet), my brain appears also to be occupied by some sort of hissing mongoose, whose name is probably You Have a Savings Account. After several encounters, the raccoon is wary of him. So I simultaneously sympathize with this post, and also think, “I wouldn’t even CONTACT someone who advertised anything less than a car for $5000. I would be offended on principle.”

    Now, onto the subject I’m more interested in: your kitchen. I don’t think those gold things belong in your kitchen at all. At least, not in that color(s). What if I could find you some sort of legit historic architectural salvage for less than $5000 that could actually go in your kitchen? (Enormous corbels, or some sort of fancy hardwood.) Then would you oblige us with kitchen plans? To sweeten the deal, I could send you antique and antique-compatible kitchen inspiration photos that roughly correspond to your floor plan, which might convince Paul that you’re making progress? Maybe. He probably knows you better than that :).


  31. Danielle @Storypiece
    August 6, 2013 @ 3:46 pm

    This is the first time that I’ve realized that your kitchen currently reminds me of Monica & Rachel’s on “Friends”. It’s a fun kitchen, but not quite right for Elegancy.

    PS. We’ve been watching WAY too much “Friends”


  32. Jen
    August 6, 2013 @ 3:55 pm

    So I totally love a good online challenge, and I see the address of the house where these items are located, it is a real address (I checked) why not just do a drive by? Maybe the reason they put the address is they WANT people to come and see the set not just email about it. Anyone classy enough to own that furniture obviously comes from a time where the proper way to make contact is face to face. I am not suggesting you get out of your car but IF they were out in the yard…


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      August 7, 2013 @ 1:30 pm

      I DID consider this… but felt it crossed an unspoken line of CL decorum. If such a thing exists?


      • Jen
        August 8, 2013 @ 1:44 am

        I was just sipping wine with a neighbor a few hours ago discussing this very subject. She had posted something for free on CL and left her address and the items in the driveway. She was annoyed that she had to go back and add that because she had posted the address she had to put COME AND GET IT after the fact. They have sent their address out into the world and the pillars are yours for the taking. If they are not home leave them a note;
        I would like the pillars, I don’t just feel the elegancy, I LIVE there.


  33. the misfit
    August 6, 2013 @ 4:37 pm

    Thus, while I know these things are not all shiny (I don’t give up easily):






    http://www.oldhouseparts.net/odds-ends/product/show/2056-oe-243/category_pathway-244 (if it is not obvious, this will house your stove hood)


    http://www.oldhouseparts.net/ironwork/product/show/4181-iw-96/category_pathway-227 (here’s your pot rack – beats the pants off an Enclume, and a fraction of the price. For a wee detour into rural Virginia. Not where I live, BTW. Though I have been to this place. And it is as awesome as it looks)

    http://www.oldhouseparts.net/plumbing/product/show/4335-plmb-195/category_pathway-249 (I see that you have a sink with a dish drainer to its left)

    http://www.oldhouseparts.net/plumbing/product/show/2585-plmb-130/category_pathway-247 (may be easier to fit with your existing kitchen)

    Also check out http://www.thebrassknob.com (though for some reason its catalog is presently refusing to load).

    Also also, you will need to go here: http://communityforklift.com/index.cfm. Check out their August sales (includes ranges and sinks!) and also the inventory highlights: https://plus.google.com/photos/107738264346223805524/albums/5860029573358870273/5898351243754191826?banner=pwa&gpsrc=pwrd1#photos/107738264346223805524/albums/5860029573358870273/5898351243754191826?banner=pwa&gpsrc=pwrd1&pid=5898351243754191826&oid=107738264346223805524. (Viking refrigerator…vintage gas stove…Cold War-era bathythermograph…pocket doors…card catalogs…column capital…French doors that would make magnificent cabinets a la http://www.southernliving.com/home-garden/decorating/antique-dream-kitchen-00417000071616/page5.html. Actually, I may need to head back there myself. I seem to need Victorian ceiling fans and some gingerbread for my porch)


    • Victoria Elizabeth Barnes
      August 9, 2013 @ 10:18 am

      A- you went to spam jail, my apologies.
      B- THOSE glass-front arched doors have been pinned in my kitchen board for a YEAR, with no source (whatever blog I got them from didn’t link back) so FINALLY being able to see the rest of the kitchen is gratifying. (Her countertop is awesome!)


  34. tammigirl
    August 6, 2013 @ 5:05 pm

    Those would be fun for a permanent limbo setup.

    Maybe in the foyer, so everyone who enters must limbo.


  35. NM
    August 6, 2013 @ 6:52 pm

    Victoria! HOW have you and Elegancy failed to recall that you can make Craigslist people bring their wares to You, and humbly sue for Your attention??
    Wanted: Gilt French Provincial plant stands. Please include photo with offers…
    Please limit yourself to no more than 10 or 12 of the things; the house is material, and can only withstand so much glorious glitter.
    Now, go design your kitchen. I’m thinking something like this: http://globerove.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/French-Provincial-Kitchen.jpg
    Ok, I realize it bears no resemblance whatsoever to the actual space you have, but surely Paul can fix that tiny detail?! And do add a few of those plant stands scattered about. Perhaps with genuine ferns perched on them?


  36. Marcia
    August 6, 2013 @ 7:30 pm

    Sweetie, while I love your raccoon.. That kitchen is NOT fine!! You clearly need an island and some nice countertops going on in there. I will send up some prayers to the craigslist gods, and you go FIX the kitchen!! Sheesh!



  37. Steve@AnUrbanCottage
    August 6, 2013 @ 7:34 pm

    You lost me on the “obelisks of awe” but elegancy will be my new favorite word. And I still love you.


  38. Heather
    August 6, 2013 @ 7:43 pm

    Victoria, I know what you are saying about a fine kitchen. When we bought our 1904 Denver Square almost 2 years ago, everything in it was fine, but weird. We easily updated quite a bit in the last two years. But, the kitchen — however much I hate the too tall cabinets and counters (4 inches taller than standard), the too modern custom built soild wood cabinets, the crappy fridge, the closed in feel in there — everything in it works. I don’t have to wash dishes in the bathroom, and don’t have to live in dust and chaos. I remodeled a kitchen 20 years ago, when I had a 9 year old, and 7 year old living with me. It was a great adventure for them eating cereal out of little boxes, and having pizza or happy meals for dinner every night, The nest is now empty, but I am reluctant to do it again, though I desperately want to make this one fit the house a little better, and fit my 5’4″ stature. I don’t cook that much anymore, but it would be nice to make it fantastic instead of just – fine. I actually have drawn out the plans, but unfortunately, my husband is not a power tools kind of guy, and he would rather deal with a fine kitchen forever than pay someone else to tear it apart, and rebuild it so that is sparkles. I’m working on him. Send Elegancy over please, I could use some of his nagging.


  39. Alex @ northstory
    August 6, 2013 @ 10:24 pm

    Ok but inquiring minds – aka me – want to know…if you got them…when you get them (because we know you will) where are you going to put them?? In the kitchen perhaps? Maybe a nicer thing to hold up the island.


  40. D'Arcy H
    August 7, 2013 @ 12:48 am

    You made my day by using the word “foist” in your post. Now, get busy on the kitchen. I want more people to feel as frustrated and crazed as I do!!


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