House from scratch is a lot harder than you might imagine. For one, the architect, who is a licensed "a professional" may be a flake. (I was going to use a different term that I never ever use. You might think 'douchebag' is part of my everyday venacular. It's not.) One of those people who owns the credentials but doesn't do the work? More on that later.
So here are swatches-
I found it difficult to pick these things out, because unlike choosing yarns or fabric for projects, redoing whole interiors isn't something I get to do all the time. And it's difficult to know how things are going to translate into the real world. Like the bold berry colored stain on the red-oak sample I circled? My cabinets are not nearly as red as you'd think, and this shot shows them as fairly red. Actually, they are primarily a cool brown. (I have maintained for years that my best brown is mauve, and I think it's STILL true.)
And the granite? That was selected in March, and I stood in the stoneyard with a list of stone varieties "in budget" sweating like a pig, trying to visualize slabs the size of small U-Hauls as my kitchen counter. They installed it yesterday, and I walked in yesterday evening at 8:30, and holy shit. I thought I had snow leopards mating on the counter-tops. We had to have a fight about it today. DH was annoyed because I was not over-joyed, but seriously suspecting my own taste level. I was scared I screwed up and ordered really expensive fug.
I turned it over in my mind and thought about this-it seems so loud because it is the only patterned thing in the whole house. And I went to visit it today. In the late afternoon light, I see fewer leopards, and more rivers of gold and bits of berry and it is ok. DH likes it better too.