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Sunday, June 26, 2016

Bedroom Makeover

Hi everyone,

I finally did it.  I revamped our bedroom.

When the boyfriend and I combined households, we decided to use his furniture in the master bedroom instead of mine.  He was worried the cats would destroy my beautiful bed (and he wasn't wrong) and did not want to chance it.

He had dark wood furniture with clean lines, so I was fine with the plan.  In our rental, the master bedroom had green paint and brown trim.  It was like living in a forest, all the time.  I strongly considered painting the room and ended up trying to "go with it", as I spent money painting over the living room feature red wall and the dining room peach color.  It was money well spent, but there wasn't enough leftover to paint the master bedroom also.  Also, it was a rental, so I wanted to limit my home improvement of someone else's property.

The colors in the bedroom in our new home are the same as the rest of the house, beige.  While its nice to not be restricted in terms of color palette and decor, it has been challenging to be bold with colors and patterns.  The boyfriend is a big fan of neutral everything, but a roomful of brown makes me nauseated.  For a while now, we've gone with the same palette as in the previous green master bedroom at the rental.  His furniture, my old green knit blanket, his grey and black quilt and shams set.  He had an old Moroccan lantern that I liked, so I bought a few other ones and some wooden carved wall hangings to try to build on the theme.  I had been "on hold" in that place for a while.  It has been killing me trying to come up with something to go with these color options.  Green, grey, and black are just not my thing.

Here is the old bedroom.  You can see my nightstand redo on the left and the boyfriend's IKEA hack where he stained the IKEA Rast and added new knobs on the right.  I purchased the purple and silver throw pillows to try to work with the silver and black, but it wasn't enough.

Here is my jewelry cabinet, from value city furniture.  It has held up nice over the years.  Above it is a picture, vaguely french with green colors and two beautiful ceramic pieces flanking it, both from the boyfriend's collection.  These were in the living room of the rental and here we decided to try it out in the bedroom.  Nice, but random.

 This is the Moroccan feature wall we transplanted from the rental bedroom.  I got the carved wall hanging from World Market and the lanterns from various places, including Amazon.  The boyfriend's lantern came from a friend, the same one who gave him the ceramic pieces pictured above.  I pretty much have liked and used everything she has given him.  Poor guy.

So...transformation time.

I decided to use what I already had and buy small budget items, getting rid of only the items I truly could not stand anymore.  The room was also a bit bare, decor wise, but I only wanted to add things that truly updated and complimented the existing space.

I kept the Moroccan wall carving and lanterns on the dresser area the exact same.

I switched out the ceramic figures and painting for a mirrored sconce from World Market.

Antique Gold Rectangular Emma Sconce 

I got rid of the black/grey quilt and shams and replaced them with a stone grey quilt/sham option with a Moroccan pattern from Overstock.  I also got a wooden medallion to hang over the bed to add some texture and depth to the space. I used the same purple and silver throw pillows, and they look really great now.  I also used a white knit blanket I got a few months ago from Overstock for the living room.  The cats were just waiting to destroy it anyway.  I really think the bed is now the focal point to the room.

This room we use every day now makes me smile.  Between these changes and the closet redo, I think the master bedroom is 90% done.  The boyfriend considers it 99% done, in a minimalist style.  He clarified the difference between minimalist and spartan for me as well.  Smile.


Saturday, June 18, 2016

China Cabinet Redo


Hi everyone,

We have been hard at work the past few weeks.  Our amazing previous homeowners had a lovely front and back garden with trees, flowering bushes, and other niceties.  We are NOT garden people.  I have killed many a plant.  The boyfriend has actually taken over plant maintenance.  He is better, but we still killed a nice viney thing in the backyard within a few weeks of taking ownership.  Recently, we realized the yard was looking scraggly, so we tried to hire a guy in the neighborhood to help us out.  Instead of taking our money, he gave us excellent specific instructions on what to do ourselves, free of charge.  Now, I didn't really want to do it myself, but, it seemed fairly straightforward.  We pulled weeds, mulched, trimmed bushes and...voila!

We were rewarded with some beautiful late blooming hydrangeas.  And more weeding.  Weeding forever.  My brother's words before we bought a house: "Don't say I didn't warn you".  You did, bro.  You did.

We also finally decided to upgrade to some "adult" furniture.  We had been using the boyfriend's old classic IKEA bookshelf to store our alcohol and barware.  After scouring Craiglist for weeks for a china cabinet that met both of our criteria, we came across a perfect one.  Our specifications were glass doors on the top to display glasses (me), hutch area to pour drinks (boyfriend), additional storage for liquor and wine (both).  There are a LOT of really old really ugly china cabinets on Craigslist.  Similarly, there are lot of Pinteresters remaking old ugly china cabinets. 

The one we found was a very contemporary hutch with some antiquing details.  It had lighting in the glass cabinets and hutch areas.  The seller thought it had been originally from Pier One.  He was moving and did not have time to fix it up anymore.  He had matched the paint, planning to paint over the antiquing aspects to lose to "farmhouse" feel.  He even helped us transport it home after the top half wouldn't fit in the car. Craigslist win.  I feel like this is karmic payback for the time I took my Ikea bookcase to a woman with a newborn in Laurel because she couldn't coordinate fitting in the bookshelf and the baby seat. No bueno.

I was able to finish his paint job in our dining room.  I do not recommend this technique, as I had to protect it from the cats for a few hours after painting.  I painted the top half first, with several touch up coats, and then moved on to the bottom half.  I would make sure the cats wouldn't come near it for an hour, then do a touch up coat.  After 3 days of painting and touch ups, it was done.

The boyfriend expressed some distress about the "aged" knobs.  I thought they were a nice touch to the newly painted cabinet, but I could not win him over.  We agreed to spray paint them in an oil rubbed bronze color, in keeping with the original color and the rest of our fixtures in the dining and living room.  Pinterest came to the rescue in the form of this post from The Snug.  This spray paint was amazing - I am only going to buy Rustoleum Ultra Cover from now on.  No leaks, minimal smell, fast drying time, amazing results. 
How to transform dated brass doorknobs with Rust-Oleum bronze metallic paint. It really works!:

Aged knobs pre spray paint below:

Check out the finished product pictures below.  Ah, adulting.  Time for more weeding now.

On to the next one.