1973 was a very brown year, if our house is anything to go by. I didn’t give it much thought over the summer, but now it gets dark early and we’re inside more often, so we can no longer deny there’s a lot of brown about. It hasn’t helped that we also accumulated a fair bit of brown furniture from previous residences.

Gareth is particularly bothered by the brownness and often wanders about singing a mournful version of California Dreamin’ that doesn’t get past the first two lines:

All the leaves are brown
And the walls are brown* (and the doors are brown)
And the bathroom’s brown (and the carpet’s brown)**
And the couch is brown (and the chairs are brown)
And the Malm is brown (and the wardrobe’s brown)
And the stairs are brown (and the window frames are brown)
And the driveway’s brown (and the shed is brown)
And the table’s brown (and the speakers are brown)***

* “The walls are NOT brown,” I protested, “The colour is called Sandstone!”

“Close enough. It’s like living inside a biscuit!”

** “The carpet is not brown! It’s a sort of beigey-cream.”

“Beige is a breed of brown!” said Dr G.

*** Gareth CHOSE to buy gigantic old brown 1980s speakers from Green Hi-Fi so he’s got no one to blame but himself for that one.

Recently we tried to jazz things up a little by painting the dining room a sexy shade of teal. Except it turned out a wee bit darker than hoped, so it is a bit like, to quote guess who, “Like living inside the blue Tellytubby”. To which I replied that there is no blue Tellytubby.

But if there was a blue Tellytubby it would be the same sort primary blue that the dining room appears to be at certain times of day. But neither of us can face painting it again, so we will put up with the blue and brown for now. Like living inside a bruise!

All that said, I love living at Crooked House. We’ve almost clocked up a year. This has been the changing view from the brown-now-blue dining room:



Late summer…


And now autumn. All the fields are ploughed… now the fields are BROWN.


About Shauna Reid

Ahoy there! I’m Shauna, an author, copywriter and content mentor. I love telling stories about life and helping others to tell theirs.

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22 thoughts on “Brown

  1. What a gorgeous view, in every season! We are dealing with a bit a brown-ness around here, too. I’m sure you’ll find some striking colors to spruce it up. Tiffany Blue goes good with brown. That color combo might be last year’s fashion, but I still like it.

  2. I am going to be humming that all day…

    If it makes you feel any better the theme for our living seems to be ‘old’ – we live in a retirement village (at the ripe old age of 30 – it is an amazing location, great little unit and much more likely to go up in value than one of the random little crap units that were our other options to buy) and drive an ‘old persons car’ (a volvo that we wouldn’t swap for anything – bloody brilliant cars and cheap too thanks to the Aussie distate for them). Hmmm…wonder what song I can make out of that.

  3. oh, but brown is so lovely, really. Especily when it takes its turn after white and green, like in those pics.
    I thought you were going to talk about the brownness of rural NSW, which, as it happens, as no longer officially brown but a very zingy green. As of yesterday…
    oh frabjous day.

    I quite like sky blue with brown, just so you know. Nice.

  4. LoL. I’ve been having trouble coming to terms with the impending and interminable autumn/winter. Gareth’s song has made it much much more bearable. Recently (much to the chagrin of my boyf) I’ve taken to repainting our furniture all sorts of colours to combat the overwhelming brown-ness of it all. Its mighty cheering, but I think its more the fact of having a non-tv, non-cooking project for at home that provides the cheer rather than the overall outcome of my painting endeavours.

  5. Shauna, this made me properly laugh out loud. In fact I’m still chuckling. I will be singing that all day now (and my coat is brown (and my boots are broo-own!)) Dr G sure has a way with words.

    Isn’t it terrible that the children of the 70s, scarred by all that mission brown growing up, end up buying houses of that period, reliving the nightmare FOR THE REST OF THEIR LIVES x

  6. Well, I was around in the 70s but didn’t like brown decor even then, so it’s not my fault! But glad you’re happy despite it. I love your view. Why don’t I live in the country? (I ask myself).

  7. Delightful. =) LOVE the brown interpretation of the song. Perhaps from growing up in California (sunshine/light addiction) I CANNOT live in a dark house. All of our walls, save one bedroom are “swiss coffee” which means white, but not screaming, where-are-my-sunglasses white. And LOTS of windows. Love the views from your house!

  8. You know what’s really ironic? Other than a brief flash of green that’s “Spring”, California is quite brown most of the other seasons. (Okay, our trees have green leaves most of the time, so it’s not ALL brown…unless you live in the desert areas of California, in which case, yep, it’s very brown.) And if you live on the coast, like I do, about 90% of the time the skies are grey. “California Dreamin’,” indeed. 😉

  9. Actually, it was suddenly seeing brown everywhere that apparently got Vic and Bob doing the ‘Brown Tour’. Worth a watch!

  10. Ahh comments. Thank you, thank you!

    @Paul – loved the sketch! had that song in my head all day now 🙂 i saw in the comments there’s been US and German versions too! Bizarre.

    @Anna – sounds like a very tranquil place to live, hehe.

  11. Yes I remember that there was a lot of brown around in the early 70’s but what about the burnt orange and avocado accessories? They are a definite must for authenticity.
    I can’t believe you have been in the crooked house for nearly a year? Has the awful smell gone yet?


    I thought those were pics randomly Google-selected for laughs (well, your European seasons CHANGE so much. Here, it would be “Oh yeah, that’s the bus stop out the front in summer. And same again in autumn, really. Bus stop looks same again in winter, except some guy has a beanie on. And, oh, now he’s sneezing. It must be spring.”)

    … then I realized, WITH GREAT ENVY, that it is actually truly your view out the front!!!!!!!! Amazing.

  13. At least the view from the room is lovely. isn’t that worth it? I swear that the house we bought might have been on the verge of falling down and infested with termites and my husband still would have made us buy it simply for the view.

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