I really need a big opinion.

Please tell me you have one.


And please tell me that:

(a)  you are willing to share it

(b)  you specialize in big opinions

(c)  that actually….your specialty includes railroad signs


Remember the homeless railroad sign?

I know you were waiting with anxious anticipation to see where I put it.

Well….it ended up finding four homes in the farmhouse. 

Four places where I love it. 

Four place that are perfect for a little bit of transportational art.


And I can’t decide.

I need some assistance.

Can you please help a locationally-challenged-railroad-sign friend out?



Option 1:  Above the mantel in the family room

pro:  It makes my $1 cement block artwork look like it’s one step away from hanging in the Guggenheim.

con:  Is it just me or does the gray make it look pink?  Not the good kind of pink.  The kind of pink that makes me think of indigestion.



Option 2:  Above the chalkboard in the family room

pro:  It makes the chalkboard look like it belongs on the station wall.

con:  I accidentally knocked Monday for a loop when I put the sign up there and from this picture it doesn’t look like Monday has really recovered.  Update:  as I write this post….Monday has jumped ship and is currently on the ground.


Option 3:  Between the curtains on the wall with the french doors

pro:  That space over the french doors finally has something in it.

con:  Just because it’s something…..doesn’t make it right.  And I feel like it looks like the finials are pointing awkwardly at the sign. 


Option 4:  Over the closet door in the back hallway

pro:  It distracts the eye from the smoke detector. 

con:  It feels a little lost up there in the space over the door.  Maybe it’s the proximity to the erstwhile mentioned smoke detector, but there’s something about this that says too much “I’ve been working” and not enough “railroad.”


Now you’ve seen each of the options and heard all the pros and cons.

And I want your opinion. 


Not just a little bit. 

A lot.  

And I know you are saying to yourself that you aren’t really all about polls because you think your voice won’t be heard and there are way more important things going on in the world right now like Tom and Katie’s break-up and you are still upset because you voted for Jessica Sanchez for American Idol and you have never fully recovered.

But the thing is…..the fate of a railroad sign is in your hands.


Choose wisely 🙂



PS Don’t forget. The giveaway for the smocked jute drapes is still going on here.

PPS  When my husband read this post he rolled his eyes and said,  “Are you really throwing this to the nation?”  Ummmmm……of course.

PPPS  I wish I had a fifth option just to vote for all of us to use the word erstwhile at least once today 🙂

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  1. Image for Cindy@OldTimePickers Cindy@OldTimePickers

    Hey...I've got the 'CROSSING' part of that railroad sign. Found it at a flea market. Haven't decided if I should keep it or sell it. It is a lot of fun. And your sign...I voted for above the chalkboard. I mean, really, the chalkboard. :)

  2. Image for Lisa@Before Meets After Lisa@Before Meets After

    I vote above the mantel. I too have a vote going on for which dining room light fixture I should use. My hubbs just rolled his eyes and was like "do we really care what people on the internet (who have never been to our house) think about our dining room?" Why yes dear we do :)

  3. Image for shirley@housepitalitydesigns shirley@housepitalitydesigns

    Well, it is evident.....I need to use my Thesaurus more often...so I can use words like "erstwhile"....and then it is evident that I need to use Polldaddy more often...I can just hand the poll to hubby and tell him, "say nothing, just check and walk away"..... I voted, but I was torn...the dilemma of having to "just pick one"....I can hear the rooms calling..."pick me, pick me"....I can tell you that I like the sign over the chalkboard but then again...I am not sure if it is welcome there...as "Monday" protested and stomped away...And.. it seems like when placed over the door, it stands proud.. this way to the railroad...thru the door with that gorgeous wreath.......

  4. Image for cassie cassie

    i have a degree in railroad sign placementology and i chose option 3, but i also really like option 2. you may use my professional opinion as you wish.

  5. Image for stacey stacey

    Well, judging by poll results so far, great minds think alike!! Don't worry monday will recover......eventually!! ;)

  6. Image for Kathryn Kathryn

    I chose option 2, because it just seems like Mr. Railroad Sign and Ms. Chalkboard were meant to be together- in spite of Monday's protests. Don't worry,, he'll come around eventually :)

  7. Image for Danielle Danielle

    I loved that sign when you first posted about it. I think it goes great with the chalkboard because as a railroad sign it is directing all the daily crossings that go on in family life by keeping the chalkboard operating correctly.

  8. Image for Kathryn Kathryn

    P.S. Now I know why-- it's because Mr. (Mrs.?) Armillary is playing cupid! (Notice the arrow?) Poor erstwhile Monday is just afraid of becoming an overlooked step-child is all. But he'll get past it once he understands that Mr. Railroad Sign's presence will actually bring him MORE attention! P.S.P.S. Totally different subject, but did you actually make holes in the walls when you hung each of these options? If so, what do you do to fol the unwanted ones in again? :)

  9. Image for Vee Vee

    Now that was fun. It always makes me feel good to find that my opinion is in the majority. It really will look great wherever you place it because it's a fantastic sign.

  10. Image for Pam@frippery Pam@frippery

    I chose over the chalkboard as well, however I do like it above the closet door if it was maybe and inch or two lower. It still wouldn't interfere with the erstwhile mentioned smoke detector. Or is that aforementioned?

  11. Image for Bliss Bliss

    My big-opinion-specialty in railroad signs makes this comment an erstwhile endeavor for the day. Because I know railroad signs, as my husbands dad worked on the railroad and his neighbors dog used to read the signs and I pat that dog once on the head. ~Bliss~

  12. Image for Catherine Catherine

    I like option one or two and after voting for option one, it looks like I'm being out voted. I think it brings out the color of the book pages and the apple instead of the pink. Either way I'm envious of your find!

  13. Image for everton terrace everton terrace

    I think I might be the only one who likes option #1 the best. I feel over the chalkboard is nice but wrong - there are already things to read there, it's distracting and too busy. You freaked me out with the curtain rods pointing at the sign so I didn't love that option and I don't like it over the door way at all because it actually made me notice the smoke detector even more. It looks like it sits a little too high so wonder why it isn't lower and you see the little devil. I prefer the first one because it seems to make the sign (which I LOVE) stand out the most.

  14. Image for Heather G Heather G

    #2 Definitely! I feel like it makes the most sense there. It works above the mantle, but I feel like its too much there, in between the curtains seems like you had the space and just wanted to fill it and above the door is too high for my eye. Hopefully that helps :)

  15. Image for Peggy Peggy

    Ok I am not going to tell you how I voted but give you some more pros (or more things to think on...) 1. Family room... it really brings out the colors in your sofa, no pink tones, (at least not on my screen...) 2. Dining room... nice placement, gives definition to the area. However Grand Central Station might be more appropriate, nay, even more elegant for the chalkboard 3. between the windows.... sorry no pros here, too much finger pointing or finial pointing as the case may be. 4. closet door..... suggestion paint the smoke detector red or black to resemble the old bells at the railroad stations. (yeah I've painted a smoke detector or two in my day in order to make them stand-out or blend in which the case may be!) Wish me luck! We tore up the absolutely adorable spare room yesterday in preparation of the arrival of the long awaited, much anticipated.... MARIMBA!! :) Yes a certain member of our family is ecstatic, almost beside himself for the arrival of his beloved marimba. Have a wonderful day!

  16. Image for katie goldsworthy katie goldsworthy

    Holy smokes! You have a lot of voters! Looks like I am in the majority. When it looks like it is just "supposed to go there", I assume it's in the "right place". ...and when you see it above the chalkboard, it looks like it's "supposed to be there", and that it's been there forever. Love it there! I love it in between the curtains too, but the finials make it a little bit too narrow of a space. There are my "big opinions" haha. Take them for what their worth (which might not be much ;) --Kaite

  17. Image for Carol Cox Carol Cox

    The rail road is a place going somewhere so the hallway makes sense to me. Canyou lower the sign? or put it above the bench? like people waiting for the train there.

  18. Image for Erin Buchanan Erin Buchanan

    Of all the choices I think over the chalk board, if not, then in the hall. But not over the mantel, no way! ;-)

  19. Image for Ashley Ashley

    I had a hard time choosing between Option 1 and Option 3, but ultimately decided to choose Option 1. That whole "vignette" (I can't get used to using that word) is beautiful!

  20. Image for Meegan Meegan

    It definitely is the chalkboard for me. Love it regardless. It looks incredible! Have a wonderful day deciding :) Meeg~

  21. Image for Maury @ Life on Mars Maury @ Life on Mars

    So I actually really like both B and D but B won out because (a) it would be a shame to put Monday through all that for no reason and (b) it looks like it was made for that spot. I dont think that it looks pink against the grey. I think it brings out the color on the sign in a good way.

  22. Image for Melissa Melissa

    Where is the option to put it in my house? :) I actually voted for the hallway but I think it needs to be moved down a tad; I think it is a little too short to be centered in the middle. I also liked above the chalkboard.

  23. Image for Elzabeth@ Blue Clear Sky Elzabeth@ Blue Clear Sky

    Ahh, can I pick all four! Seriously, I did vote but it was a tough one 'cause it looks great in all spots.

  24. Image for Lori Z Lori Z

    This IS a hard decision. I'm impressed you found so many great places for it. I'm drawn to #1 and #2, but ultimately I went with over the chalkboard. Maybe because it's rectangle like the chalkboard? I dunno, but I thought it looked best there. I do think a sign over the french doors would look nice. I never even thought about the finials pointing toward it until you mentioned it. Maybe a sign that says FLOWERS or PATIO or something since it's over the doors leading outside? p.s. What color gray are your walls painted? Love the color!

  25. Image for judi judi

    your posts always make for a great way to start my day! lol. well, in my railroad afficianado expertise, a railroad sign should always be where there will be the transporting of goods and people. therefore, above the chalkboard in the family room would be the MOST appropriate spot for the sign. if you need a signed affidavit, just let me know, i'll get it right over to you. and tell monday to get a grip...maybe he just needs a pop of glue up his backside to get him straightened out. maybe humming a bit of "monday, monday" by the mama's and the papa's will help him feel better. you know, you can never trust a monday....lol. Bah-da Bah-da-da-da Bah-da Bah-da-da-da Bah-da Bah-da-da-da Monday, Monday, so good to me Monday Mornin', it was all i hoped it would be Oh Monday Mornin', monday mornin' couldn't guarntee That Monday evenin' you would still be here with me Monday Monday can't trust that day Monday Monday, sometimes it just turns out that way Oh Monday Mornin' you gave me no warnin' of what was to be Oh Monday, Monday, how could you leave and not take me Every other day, every other day Every other day of the week is fine, yeah But whenever monday comes, But whenever monday comes a-you can find me cryin' all of the time Monday, Monday, so good to me Monday Mornin', it was all i hoped it would be Oh Monday Mornin', monday mornin' couldn't guarntee That Monday evenin' you would still be here with me Every other day, every other day Every other day of the week is fine , yeah But whenever monday comes, But whenever monday comes A-you can find me cryin' all of the time Monday Monday can't trust that day Monday Monday, it just turns out that way Oh Monday, Monday, won't go away Monday Monday, it's here to stay Oh Monday, Monday Oh Monday, Monday

  26. Image for Patricia Patricia

    One strong opinion with no other options. Over the chalkboard with one adjustment. On the first horizontal row of chalk boards, stencil in permanent destinations. The Mon-Fri still works....but perhaps dream destinations as if you are sitting in the station saying to self, "which train and day should I depart" ie: Monday New York City Tuesday: New Orleans Wednesday: San Francisco Thursday: Portland Friday: Boston etc. You get the idea..... leave the rest of the chalkboard for your family doings, menus etc. but that top group are family dream spots done by rail.

  27. Image for Beverly Beverly

    #2 - My overwhelming favorite. ♥♥♥ Followed by: #4 - Like it, but would lower it just a teensy weensy bit. #1 - I'm just not feeling it there, but I agree something would be nice in that spot. #3 - No. No. No. How did I do? Did I make my opinions perfectly clear? And, am I opinionated enough or what?

  28. Image for Linda Adams Linda Adams

    Karianne, Hands down, it belongs above the chalk board. It isn't just a chalk board it's a destination chart. Where else would it fit so perfectly? Okay the only other place I think it would be cute is above the door. It's like, "pass through the door to the railway station." Good luck. By the way did your husband have to hang it in all those places for you to photograph it? I hope you are using those nifty "Command" hanger-up-things. Hope you find a spot that makes you happy and have a great week. Hugs, Linda

  29. Image for Kelly Kelly

    I love it over the chalkboard. Maybe I just love the chalkboard. There are so many times I literally LOL when I read your posts. Thanks!

  30. Image for Shari @ Turnstyle Vogue Shari @ Turnstyle Vogue

    I like the mantel option the best I think, but the chalkboard location is great as well. I would avoid the other two simply because it wouldn't be showcased very well - and that sign MUST be showcased!! Every location that you showed, however, is stunning. You are a pro :)

  31. Image for Lisa @ Fern Creek Cottage Lisa @ Fern Creek Cottage

    I loooove it between the curtains!!! But all the spots look really good. (my least fave is above the fireplace) Men....they just don't understand us crazy decor bloggers! ;)

  32. Image for sharlotte sharlotte

    I think your sign would look great above the chalkboard...it just seems to fit! I don't have any way to justify my feelings other than gut instincts...does that help?

  33. Image for Magic and Mayhem Magic and Mayhem

    I say definitely above the chalkboard. The other sites either aren't quite right or feel too new and pretty, if that makes sense. The site over the chalkboard keeps the character of the sign. My husband would be jealous BTW. He is president of our local historic society and takes care of our town museum (an old RR depot and tiny log cabin from way back) and he's always collecting RR signs for the depot. :)

  34. Image for Pinky Pinky

    We have a railroad sign too!!!! Well, it is PACKED now but it was in Joe's train room! DUH.....I never thought to put it anywhere else:) Ours is the circle one with RR on it and the cross. It was found in a fild by my BIL and he sent it to Joe for the train room. It even has dents in it where people used it for target practice:) LOVE your sign too. I voted for over the chalkboard. XO, Pinky

  35. Image for Anne Anne

    First let me tell you that I LOVE this sign! Now placement.I really love it above your chalkboard.The two really work together!Where ever you put your sign it will look amazing in your beautiful home! ((Hugs)) Anne

  36. Image for Beth @ Unskinny Boppy Beth @ Unskinny Boppy

    Above the chalkboard is my vote. Come Monday, it'll be alright. PS--I wanna know how you write on that chalkboard. I can totally picture you barefooted and balanced on the back of the sofa with chalk and eraser in hand. Is that how you do it for real?

  37. Image for Kelly Kelly

    Well aren't you clever doing a poll and all! That was a good idea. It looks like my vote was among the most popular. (That's a relief. Ha!) I wouldn't want to steer you wrong. Actually you could use it anywhere in your home and it would look great. Isn't it nice to have a piece that has so many possibilites?

  38. Image for "Auntie" "Auntie"

    I voted for #2, like the majority. But I also liked it, over the closet. Down that little hall. It just might be more *needed* at #4... Do Rail Road signs feel *needed* I wonder? ,-) Thank you so much for commenting that you like my books-I-liked reading suggestions. It's so nice to hear, that someone does resonate with one's own favorite books. Reading is such an individual thing. I never want anyone to feel they *have to* read what I liked. But I don't think I give that.... "DO IT!" vibe. Yes, yes, I know. I give that "DO IT!" vibe a lot! 'Cause I'm a exactly what you don't want your bosssssy ol' auntie to be. -gigggles- But I really don't want anyone to take-orders on reading. Thank you much, for telling me, that you do resonate with many of my book suggestions!!!! Gentle hugs, "Auntie sezzzzzzzzzzzzzzz"

  39. Image for Lynn Wood Lynn Wood

    You can't go wrong with any of those but it really seems to live over the chalkboard. Oh, and since you have already figured out how to do it, could you come and knock Monday out of my week too? You just might have a very marketable skill there... -Lynn

  40. Image for Revi Revi

    Hi Karianne, I vote for over the chalkboard, and my second choice is over the door in the back hallway. Maybe you need two of them! Does this thing glow? Is it light-reflective paint? It might be interesting to spotlight it if it does... -Revi

  41. Image for Patty Patty

    Don't listen to anyone else who told you it should be anywhere but over the broken Monday scheduler in the family room. It belongs there period. With a schedule like that, it looks like a train station schedule and brings humor to something that isn't. 'Nuf said. Patty/BC. : )

  42. Image for Rhonda Rhonda

    I love the sign above the chalkboard the best! Second choice is over the door, but dropped down a little. A definite no to the other two choices!

  43. Image for Mary Mary

    I really like it with the chalkboard. They just seem to fit together! It is a great piece of art where ever you decide! Reminds me of my mother's little restaurant she had called the "Chattanooga Chew Chew" She had all kinds of rail road decor .

  44. Image for Zolane Zolane

    My favorite is in the hallway. Maybe it's all the train rides I took as a child, walking up and down those narrow aisles and looking up to try to read the signs to the different cars/compartments. Or maybe it's because my beloved grandfather worked on the train all his life and told us so many stories. Either way it was about adventure, possibilities and wonderful memories. While every location is great in it's own right, I guess seeing it placed over a closed door made me think a great adventure was just beyond the door. I enjoyed your post as always; I smiled and giggled all the way through. You make my heart glad!

  45. Image for Traci Traci

    Thanks for the afternoon giggle. I vote for above the french doors. I like the way pattern of the drape panels looks with the sign. Traci

  46. Image for NanaDoll NanaDoll

    I vote for above the chalkboard--it reminds me of a train station schedule. I also kind of like it over the french doors, but really love it with the chalkboard. What a great piece!

  47. Image for Pat@BPM Pat@BPM

    We did indeed have a railroad sign when we lived at the farm. J "planted" it at the cattle guard that led into our little spot in the back pasture. After all, it did feel like crossing tracks when we crossed the cattle guard. Those who know us are well acquainted with our whimsical nature. I chose at the end of the hallway. Although it was tempting to choose the chalkboard. I agree with you, it reminded me of old station depots. Uh huh, I do remember those and locomotives, too.:-)

  48. Image for Barbara F Barbara F

    All I could think of while looking at the pictures was.... sign is awesome, looks especially great over the chalkboard - BUT, it should be in MY house! My husband is a certifiable train nut. He has hundreds of small train cars and engines, he has thousands of train slides, he has dozens of railroad books. That sign would be perfect somewhere in my house - any chance he has a brother???? Barbara

  49. Image for Debbie L. Debbie L.

    Great sign! Love it! It seems logical to hang the railroad sign over the chalkboard but it looks so pleasing to my eyes hanging in the hallway.

  50. Image for Michelle Michelle

    I love your sign. My first vote is in the hallway but I also like it over the chalkboard. Wish I had your sign.

  51. Image for Heather Heather

    Over the chalkboard for sure!! Monday's are always so difficult aren't they??? Give that Monday sign the 3M Command strip treatment and show it whose the boss of Thistlewood Farm!!

  52. Image for Becca Becca

    This is me readin your post- "Oh, I love it above the mantle- that looks perfect" "Aw yes, over the chalkboard. I love it over the chalkboard!" "AH huh, yes, perfect. In between the curtains. Perfect" "Ahhhh, the hallway. It looks great in the hallway! It looks like it belongs in the hall" Ultimate decision...buy three more signs and hang one in each and every place. There, problem solved! ;-) xo Becca

  53. Image for Anna Anna

    Dang! Those were really hard choices but ultimately I picked the placement above the chalkboard (which I LOVE btw!). I would have put the vote up on my blog if it were up to me. My husband would have just rolled his eyes. :) Anna

  54. Image for Jo-Anne Jo-Anne

    So many bloody great place but I really thing the best place for it is Option 3: Between the curtains on the wall with the french doors that is my favourite place but what do I know or I might get out voted but hell I am telling you go with Option 3 got it..................lol

  55. Image for Kelly @ Eclectically Vintage Kelly @ Eclectically Vintage

    The mantel is screaming for that sign! I spotted the full railroad crossing sign at Brimfield - the full X sign. Railroad/Crossing! With the expectation of lugging home the most amazing sign from Brimfield, I searched every tent, nook and cranny but found nothing. Well, I should say I found some great things but I was too cheap to buy them! Now, start patching all those holes where you tested out the sign! Kelly

  56. Image for P Higbee P Higbee

    I think it would really look great in the pantry behind your white dishes. Give your pantry a little distinctive class with the glass. Hehe

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