Have you ever seen an ultralight airplane? When I first met my husband, he had a Quicksilver. It basically looked like a huge kite with two lawn chairs hanging below and a motor behind. No windshield. No cockpit. No floor. What a blast it was to ride in that little plane! It only went 43 mph. For me, it was like experiencing the essence of flight, so totally unlike airline travel. It reminded me of those dreams you have when you are ten, where you just start flying over your hometown, low and slow, able to see every detail. He would fly us out over the open spaces, along rivers and over fields. We could see the wildlife. Boaters would wave at us. Oh, we had such fun. My husband’s passion for flight is so clean and clear and true. He really does love it above all else.
One of the ways his passion expresses itself is through his extensive aviation library. He is a student of airplane design, propeller design, and airfoils in general. He uses math I’ve never even seen before. Anyway, when we got married, he came with 92 boxes of books. That’s a lot of books. Our new house has an office. I knew it had to be his, and I knew it had to have a ton of bookshelves. I meditated on the space. Slowly, the design began to gel in my mind. I took him shopping. I feel that it is important at this point to let you know my husband has absolutely zero imagination when it comes to interior design. He needs to see things in person, and even then, he can’t visualize them in a room. Don’t even ask about paint colors. At the consignment store, I found a pair of large wingback chairs. They were lumpy and covered in a hideous, worn out purple, grey and black giant flame stitch fabric. I told him I’d have them recovered with a smooth back. I think all he heard was “Bla, bla, bla, Ginger”. He does, however, happen to be a great negotiator, so I sent him up front to do his best. We got them home for a song where he and my dad said they were perfectly good as is, why recover them? I prayed for inner strength. I found a gorgeous green dot, silk/cotton ikat online and ordered yardage. The re-done chairs came out gorgeous! We painted the walls Benjamin Moore’s Iron Mountain, kind of a brownish charcoal. It looked almost velvety. I gave him black-brown Billy bookshelves from Ikea for Christmas. The great thing about the Billy is that you can purchase additional shelves to add on top. We have high ceilings, so the extra height makes them look like built-ins. I finished the room with a brass sputnik ceiling light, a gold framed poster of the Bugatti 100 Racer’s cockpit and a comfy tufted leather desk chair to sit at his gigantic mahogany partner’s desk.
I love the balance of the room – the dark walls vs. light ceiling, the stripe pattern of the books vs. the blurred dot of the ikat, the traditional desk, chair and frame vs. the modern light. I love to sit in there. It just may be my favorite room in the house.