Mediterranean Homesick Blues


Since returning to New York, we’ve missed the bright light and color of the Mediterranean, particularly the blues that crop up in Tunisia, Greece, Cyprus, and Italy. Since our apartment is dark we’ve been looking for a way to introduce some color and brighten up our small digs.


In a 500-square-foot apartment, every inch counts and we’d had our eye out for a table with some storage that would sit in an under-utilized square foot of space. One day on the way home we passed a side table sitting wistfully on the curb. With a quick visual calculation we determined it would fit perfectly.

Stained, scratched, varnish flaking and sporting a 1950s western vibe with discolored brass drawer pull, our friend needed a makeover. So after a year of talking about it and watching a million makeover shows we committed. We bought paint. Blue paint. After that it was just a few easy steps.


First we got the cat’s approval.


Adios old handle and drippy stains.


Fortunately the varnish was mostly worn off, so it just needed to be sanded enough to take the paint.


Old drawer pull holes filled with wood putty. New hole drilled for the new knob.
We skipped the primer. We SKIPPED the primer. We like to live on the edge.


On a whim we left the wood bare on the trim around the drawer.
Spontaneous is our middle name.


New drawer pull.

11_finished detail



Drawing on the patina of the weathered painted doors and shutters that we love to photograph, we decided to try “distressing” the painted finish of the table.


The finished table.
Is it shabby Mediterranean chic or just shabby?
Distressed or distressing?
The jury is still out. Please weigh in!



We love this sharp graphic change tray (and whole homeware line) from talented Lebanese designer Peggy Raphaël Dabar and her company, Images D’Orient. They specialize in “day to day objects that combine the charm of a Mediterranean history with the contemporary look of the chosen material: PVC.”
Click on the photo to check out their product range. Their line is also available on Amazon.