Adventures in Cottage Living

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MAJOR IMPROVEMENTS RECENTLY in my humble East Hampton cottage.

I’ve managed to turn a drab 1930s stick rattan sofa, above, with no cushions, into comfortable seating for my screened porch. All it took was three days wielding a paintbrush (this thing has a LOT of surface area and needed priming), while listening to songs I didn’t even know I had on my iPod. That, plus $400 worth of cushions on sale from the Restoration Hardware catalogue have in turn transformed the porch into a second living room. I’m sitting there as I type this, feeling pleased with myself.

But that’s nothing compared with the fact that today, after three months of living without one (inconceivable, I know), I finally had a proper refrigerator delivered. It’s a stainless Frigidaire, and I like it. It’s not the blue Smeg of my dreams, but it’s not bad-looking — exceedingly plain. It’s fairly quiet (I would prefer complete silence, but this is as close as I’m gonna get), and it’s the right size for the space, not a monster.

For almost three months — after buying and quickly returning to Sears a cheapo fridge that drove me crazy with its grunts and groans — I’ve been living with an Igloo cooler and a fridge the size of a hotel mini-bar, with a freezer just big enough for a can of lemonade. I was really tired of all my fresh Long Island farmstand produce falling on the floor each time I opened the door.

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I didn’t want to do the Sears/PC Richard route, so two weeks ago, I went to Bob Stevens Appliances, a real appliance store, located in the airport at Westhampton Beach (a safe distance from the runway). I felt I needed to see the things in situ, so I wouldn’t make a second refrigerator mistake, and it appears I have not. Now my vegetables and bottles of Long Island Summer Ale look lost in the depths of 18 cubic feet. I see a trip to the Bridgehampton King Kullen in my future.img_1800

I still want the blue, though, so my plan is to paint the lower kitchen cabinets Benjamin Moore’s Sailor Sea Blue, or something like it. This painting thing, once you get in the rhythm, ain’t so bad.

Oh, and the cellar is nearly cleared out of the previous owner’s stuff. Just a few more trips to the dump, and then it will be time to start filling it up with my own stuff.


Deer count, last 24 hours: 4 (a mother and two fawns yesterday, and a really bold one today who came within a few feet of my back door – eyeing the impatiens, I’ll bet).


About cara

I blog for fun here at casaCARA, and write about architecture, interiors, gardens and travel for many national magazines and websites. My recently published posts and articles can be found here: https://casacara.wordpress.com/recent-articles/
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5 Responses to Adventures in Cottage Living

  1. Mary-Liz says:

    Wow – how civilized!!

  2. BrooklynGreene says:

    I laughed out loud about the produce hitting the floor…same experience here.

    Keep truckin’ and hang in there.

    Sorry for the thin comment numbers. I guess we’re all “away”…I was at least…it’s just that time of year.

    Love ya’!

  3. rochelle says:

    this looks great! – I am sure you don’t want to hear this now….but I painted rattan a few years back…and I am not so patient to spend 3 days….so I resorted to spray – it really sped things up. Love the cushions!

  4. Nancy says:

    I love it The cushions really work. I have to echo Rochelle, tho, the way to go with rattan is spray. And I’m thrilled about the frig. Fill her up!

  5. Alice says:

    Cara,
    I recently discovered your lovely blog and thoroughly enjoy exploring. Love the idea of some blue on the lower cabinets to help connect the darker stainless to your kitchen. Thank you so much!

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