First, I was talking about filling in the open archway between what had been originally intended as a den and the dining room, so that my son could have some privacy (and so that we could make use of otherwise wasted space). I wanted to do something really Stickley-style, like a fabulous built-in. We really don't have the money for that and all the other things we need to do first, so I had to figure out how to do this in a sympathetic, period looking style without spending any real money, as well as doing a temporary thing.
Why temporary? Well, in five or so years, we plan to have two bedrooms and a bath built in the cellar, for the boys, as well as a completely finished laundry room, workspace, and finsihed storage areas. When that happens, we can turn our den back into a den, and I'd like to be able to put in abbreviated Craftsman-style cabinets with square pillars inside that archway. So anything we do now is just set dressing.
Here's the before pic, with the PO's non-sympathetic solution (vinyl accordion curtains):
This is taken from the dining room, looking west into the den (my son's bedroom). Not pretty, but it worked for the PO, an elderly woman in need of constant care.
Now, a series of on-the-way-to-after pictures, taken from the same vantage point:
This is a demo-in-progress image of the dining room bay addition. It's slightly less ugly right now, but we have some fairly major work to do here. First, we are going to put in posts and a support beam, as you can see some bowing where the bay was cut into the wall. There will be four posts, two at the ends, mounted flush to the walls, and two set in about 2' from the ends to create an open but divided space. There will be wainscot panels done in the same style as the archway fill-in in the bay, from the corners and under the windows, a built-in bookshelf under the center short window, and I'm going to build two window seats into the otherwise wasted space in the ends of the bay as well. I think this will all work together with the built-in panel in the arch, to increase the "Craftsman" feel of the house. I see a larger can of Minwax Polyshades in my future.
Now for the view from my son's room:
These are all shots of the part of the paintjob that had to be done before I could get back to cutting and screwing things up ... er ... together. There will be clouds painted on the walls, and the ceiling will be a deeper, more vibrant blue with stars and a moon on it. I'm debating painting in a wainscot strip with related, A&C type elements. That will probably depend on the time available before we move in.
And, I still need a radio. The talking to myself is really out of hand. I've been talking to my tools ... more than usual.