Dining Alcove Goes from Boring to Bronze

The dining alcove at Better Farm has always served its function in a straightforward manner without fuss. Sure, it was never particularly lovely; but the table could be stretched to accommodate up to eight at a time, the windows let in beautiful light, and Better Farm dinner conversation was (and is) second-to-none.

As renovations began in 2009, the patchwork wallpaper job in the dining alcove got stripped, cleaned up, and replaced with a coat of white, eco-friendly paint. When we scored some church pews off Craigslist from a soon-to-be renovated church in Calcium, N.Y., Better Farm's dining alcove felt like a a whole new space.

But we weren't done! When the single, hanging bulb over the table broke sometime around New Year's Eve, we were reduced to candlelight. Danny Ely came in at the end of May and installed new chandeliers for us, which left us with one final project: the ceiling.

The main part of the kitchen is graced with a gorgeous, original tin ceiling that's been painted white. We mimicked the style, buying faux tin ceiling in mass quantities from Lowe's and affixing it very carefully.

Only thing we've left to do is commission a custom table that follows the arc of the pews...

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Nicole Caldwell

Nicole Caldwell is a self-taught environmentalist, green-living savant and sustainability educator with more than a decade of professional writing experience. She is also the co-founder of Better Farm and president of betterArts. Nicole’s work has been featured in Mother Earth News, Reader’s Digest, Time Out New York, and many other publications. Her first book, Better: The Everyday Art of Sustainable Living, is due out this July through New Society Publishers.