Valley House Tour: The Music Room

Just past the library is the room that's currently set up as the formal dining room. The room is not huge though, and in the kitchen (which I will probably show you next) has plenty of space for a long dining table. I think the only time we would use a formal dining room is when we have company over, and in that case we would need lots of extra seating. A small formal dining room just doesn't seem useful for us. And I love having everyone in the kitchen anyway. It doesn't bother me to not have a more formal eating space.

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We thought it would be so cool to make this little space a music room. We'd put a piano centered against this back wall:

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Probably a little settee here under these windows:

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And maybe this chair in the corner here?

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And a wall of hanging instruments here to the right, probably over a storage piece:

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Sort of like what we did in the brownstone, but with Michael's other guitars up too:

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I'd love to put in a really huge, special light fixture in the tray ceiling and maybe do something with the trim to beef up the moulding. Maybe a lacquered ceiling?

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Speaking of lacquered, I want a really simple, modern piano, like a studio upright in high gloss white or black. And then I want to go unconventional on the bench, like tufted hot pink velvet or something. Here are some of my piano style inspiration photos:





I spotted a few simple (but well-made) pianos on Craigslist that I think I could paint myself. I know some people don't like the idea of painting their own pianos, but I've asked two different professional piano restorers here in New York and both of them said it won't ruin the sound at all (think of all the pianos that are sold already painted), just that it might effect the piano's resale value.

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I'm so, so excited about this little room. Right after Michael and I were married, one of our first big purchases was a piano (which we ended up having to leave behind when we moved to Boston). I can't wait to have one again now. It's at the top of our "to purchase soon" list (right up there with a new king mattress). :)

37 comments:

Juliet said...

Love the idea of a white piano....then maybe something dramatic on the floor or ceiling like glossy black and white? We slept on a heavenly bed at the element in times square and i have been bugging my husband to purchase one ever since!

Michelle Panting said...

What a lovely idea for a room! Do you or Michael play the piano? Regardless, it will be such a nice opportunity for your girls.

http://www.fullbellywornsoles.com

qcooper said...

Love the idea of a music room!
I live in Manhattan and I am jealous of your new space. There is just so much of it.
And the idea of a king size bed is a dream for us.
Maybe one day.
xo Quinn

Quinn Cooper Style

Stephanie Marie said...

LOVE it all!!! Can't wait to see transformations start! You are going to make this space look amazing!

Christy@SweetandSavoring said...

How nice it will be to have a music room! We had a piano in my house growing up and it's a fun addition to a home. I'm loving your bold ideas for painting it!

Angie said...

Thanks for sharing your plans with us- so exciting!

lifecomposing said...

We had a music room in our house growing up with two pianos - a grand and an upright. I miss that room a lot. It looks like the room is off the kitchen, which is good if your kids will take lessons: someone in the kitchen can supervise the practicing without actually hovering.
As far as piano colors go, I vote black. White has always felt a little too Vegas to me, but then again, I'm a professional musician and we have our quirks. If you're buying a cheapie piano, then paint away, but most of the inexpensive ones I've seen on Craigslist have heavy woodgrains that might not jive with the lacquer look. You might be able to find something like a Yamaha U1 or M108 for surprisingly little money if you can wait it out a bit. Have fun with this little nook. It looks like a lovely canvas for creativity.

monika said...

i was traveling through europe for a month and hadn't checked in in a while. you're moving! again! you're such a trooper, jenny. i found your blog just as you were about to move to manhattan. i'd read your previous entries and found out about all the prior moves--with kids! good luck in the new, very big, house. can't wait to see what you'll do in your new home--and I agree, the gingerbread thingie should go. congratulations and good luck in the move.

Anne said...

Jealous of a room just for music! Just my two cents: consider a baby grand since you have the space!

Jenny at LGN said...

"Anne" -

Michael, is that you?? ;)

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Kathy said...

pianoadoption! they usually need some work to sound and play right but totally worth it. Some people only want to donate to charitable organizations, but there are some nice ones available in the valley right now. I wish we had room for a baby grand right now. Super jealous. ;)

Kathy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Erin said...

Really loving the house tour... thanks for keeping us up to date on all the excitement. Gosh, it's a lot all at once. Hang in there!!!

Sarah said...

So exciting! I have been wanting to hang my boyfriend many guitars up since you posted your brownstone project and this weekend we finally did it. It looks so great and adds so much warmth to the room. He's already playing them more. Can't wait to see your music room!

Daphne said...

Your vision for the renovations is just wonderful! You have us all on the edge of our seats waiting to see what's next.

Brit said...

What a great idea! I love the shape of the first piano but the last one has great detail. So excited to see what you do!

sara said...

I love the ideas for the music room, especially off a library themed room. I think it might be interesting to continue the chevron flooring in there.

Since I have imagined that space I wonder about the stair railing by the front of the house. It will be seen from this gorgeous space you are creating. Wouldn't it be wonderful to make this stairway a statement in itself. I just think it would dramatically change the space. I liked your idea of painting it black. But now I wonder if that might swallow it up a bit. What about changing the posts?

Something like this perhaps?

http://www.lowes.com/pd_433389-41221-HFSTB1.1.21_4294715741__?productId=4006899&Ns=p_product_qty_sales_dollar|1

it comes in a satin black finish and an antique brass.

Just a thought.

Chel said...

I can't wait to see what you do with the whole house.

There is a piano store in Mesa called My First Piano that specialized in inexpensive resale pianos and has several modern lacquered pianos. They also have a painted piano project that does unique finishes. I don't work for them, I just like looking at their pianos and dreaming of having enough space for one. All of their pianos are listed on their website with prices.

simplymodernhome.com said...

I'm searching for a piano right now as well (really want the kiddos to learn to play) and I LOVE the idea of painting one!
Seriously, I cannot wait to see what you do with this house!

Susan
http://simplymodernhome.com

Karen at Home Sweet Hollywood said...

Your new home is going to be so lovely and creative.

And I just keep thinking how lucky the next renter of the brownstone is because of all the beautiful updates you've done in there.

parisbeekids.com said...

I dream of having a piano at home. When Little Miss is of music playing age we'll have to finally take the plunge!


xoxo PARIS BEE kids blog

Creative me said...

A music room is such a great idea, I too gave up my dinning room for a music room! My family loves it! We are not very formal people! A painted piano sounds great! Can't wait to see that music room!

Creative me said...
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DG said...

In regards to the "sunken room" our contractor recommended using 2x4's and laying plywood on top of that (as if you were building a 2nd floor) so we didn't need concrete. Since we were putting down hardwood anyway, it actually saved us money because we didn't have to rip up the tile or pay extra for the stairs. It may work it your space too. (I just don't want you to hate that space :)

Laura Casey Interiors said...

Love it Jenny! I can't wait to see what you do with this room...

Meagan Claire said...

I just went to a local estate sale where they had a gorgeous Kimball white lacquered baby grand. I wanted that thing so badly, but the only place we have to put it is the lawn.

Isabella watson said...

Perfect work. Nice designs

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Michele said...

I love this! I play piano and have always dreamed of having a music room! Seriously though, if I had this space to work with, I would definitely get a baby grand. You can't beat the sound and they are so beautiful. Just a thought!

Elizabeth Nowatzki said...

I love all of your ideas already for your new home! I'm an Arizona native, so I wish you all the best in moving back, especially in the Arizona heat (hooray?). Welcome back and I cannot wait to see the transformation!

Shaela said...

We have been using our small formal dining room as a music room too! I love it. We have a piano, a comfy chair, ottoman, a storage piece and a couple guitars and violins. It is one of the most used rooms in our home. Can't wait to see how you fill your new space. Thanks for the inspiration.

Bec said...

Don't worry about painting the piano. The truth is that pianos are no longer worth anything. People are literally throwing them away. It's a terrible tragedy. So go ahead and paint.

Emily said...

I dream about having a music room! :) I'm also excited to hear about your piano painting tips. Mine's been well loved (though hardly played before I got it) and I wouldn't mind experimenting on it.

Ralph Johnson said...

Wonderful planning and the piano is lovely too.

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td said...

I love the music room idea and would paint the piano black. The last photo looks exactly like my Yamaha that I've had since I was a child when my dad brought it back from Japan. It still has a beautiful sound and all the tuners i've ever had comment on that. It also seems to be able to take quite a range of temps without falling out of tune. If it is, I would go for that one. CTD

Kathryn said...

I must admit, the idea of painting a piano horrifies me but I do like painted pianos! In two minds about it for sure.

K.

Orangepeel23 said...

I love the idea of painted a piano! I saw somewhere, I want to say pinterest, but I didn't pin it so I am not sure where exactly it was, that you can paint it in chalkboard paint, or just the front facing panel.

It looked beautiful with chalk written music displayed or a festive message like merry christmas, which would also be unique since you can see it from your foyer!

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