Music Room

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…

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). :)
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35 thoughts on “Valley House Tour: The Music Room

  1. 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!

  2. 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.

  3. 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.

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  5. 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. ;)

  6. 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!!!

  7. 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!

  8. 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!

  9. 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?|1

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

    Just a thought.

  10. 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.

  11. 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!

  12. In regards to the "sunken room" our contractor recommended using 2×4'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 :)

  13. 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.

  14. 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!

  15. 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!

  16. 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.

  17. 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.

  18. 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.

  19. 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

  20. 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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