Our Living Room Transformation

Living Room

Our living room transformation has been in the process for a long time.  Before we even moved into our home last September we had painted all the walls and changed all the flooring (admittedly, we did not install the new carpet ourselves).  Our beautiful light gray wall color in this room is Manhattan Mist by Behrand we used this color in a lot of the rooms on our first floor.  Our carpet is a really dark grey, but for some reason it has a green hue in certain lighting.

Anyways, I am so happy with how this room turned out!  We bought a new sofa and chairs this past winter and they are SO COMFORTABLE.  We eat most of our meals on the sofa because it’s just so darn comfy.  We bought and hung new blinds, and started decorating!

The old window frame above our fireplace mantle came from Chartreuse & Company in Frederick, MD.  They are open once a month and sell the most adorable vintage & antique goods.  A lot of items in our house came from there!  Here’s their Facebook page where you can find their calendar (they also have a blog).

The yellow crock on the floor by our fireplace came from Target, on clearance! I had been eyeing that for a while and I scooped it up as soon as it went on sale!  The off-white crock is a real antique given to us by my dad.  I have a small obsession with water fowl (I have a lot of swan decoys around the house), and these charming decoys belonged to one of my uncles.

Our coffee table was upcycled from an old dining table one of our neighbors threw away.  That was a long process in itself!  The white trays on top came from CB2, found here.  Also from CB2 are the floor lamp (here) and the white table lamp (here).  The table lamp I have had for a LONG time & I still love it dearly.  The floor lamp was a gift for our wedding!

I made the floor ottomans & the chevron throw pillow covers (if interested, those posts can be found in my July archives!).

The little yellow side table came from Target and I painted it yellow.  If you like the style of the table, here it is!

The last part of the process was creating the small print gallery above the couch.  It took me a really long time to figure out what kind of artwork I wanted to hang there (just too many options!).  Finally I remembered that inside my super nerdy collector’s addition of  The Tales of Beedle the Bard (children stories from Harry Potter), there were a set of prints.  Well, I took those prints to the closest Michaels, found some clearance frames that I could use, and got those suckers hung up!  To be honest, I might end up taking down my gallery in the future and hanging it somewhere else in the house (but then I would be back to square one in terms of couch artwork).

Thanks for reading 🙂

 

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Renovation Project Checklist

This summer I took two graduate classes toward my Master’s Degree in Curriculum & Instruction, and I was so pleasantly surprised & pleased when one of my professors allowed us to choose ANYTHING for our major project.  I’m sure it doesn’t come as a shock when I tell you that I chose to renovate our guest bathroom as my project.  Our bathroom is SO CLOSE to being done, but I couldn’t wait to share this template that I created as part of my project!

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Whenever I’m doing a project I always have a lot of pieces of paper lying around with things to do, buy, measurements, notes, etc.  Sometimes it’s hard to remember where I put a specific piece of paper!  As part of my project and presentation I had to create a handout to share with my classmates, and I had a major light bulb moment: I could create a template to share for future home renovations.  I LOVE having those moments where a good idea just comes to you. Totally makes my day!

I can’t wait to use this template.  I’m planning on printing a sheet for each room in our house that I want to change and update.  Maybe I’ll even put together a binder with the templates along with project ideas!  The options are endless.

Anyways, if you feel as though you could use this for your own renovations or projects, please feel free to use it! And I welcome any feedback if you think of something that could be added 🙂

Home Renovation Template

My Record Cabinet & the Magic of Spray Paint

Record Player

 

The title of this post reminds me of a children’s storybook title, but really I just wanted to share how much I love spray paint!  It truly allows you to transform anything you already have in your home that just needs a bit of updating.

I received my record player as a Christmas gift from *Santa* a few years ago, but i never had anywhere to put it, so it stayed on my dresser for a while and I kept my records just in a drawer somewhere.  I just didn’t know what kind of record cabinet I wanted to have! The other week I was browsing some Facebook yard sale pages and I came across this mini record cabinet!  Although I was fairly worried it was going to be too short to realistically use, it was the perfect height once I put my record player on top.  I searched around the internet for cabinets similar to this one and I found this one & also this one.

Updating this piece was so easy! I took off the doors and set them aside.  I used a piece of sandpaper we had lying around our basement and I roughed up the top and sides of the cabinet.  I bought a can of Rustoleum white semi-gloss spray paint I bought at Home Depot (okay, it really took me 2 cans of spray paint) and began to spray away! The important thing to keep in mind with spray paint is not to spray too much paint in one area at a time, otherwise it could begin to build up and form drips.  Just do light coats and continue to spray until the entire piece is evenly covered.  After that was done I cleaned off the doors and replaced the knobs (you can buy the knobs here).

I’ve actually used spray paint in many areas of our home! Here are a few pictures of other pieces I’ve updated/transformed with a can of spray paint:

Salt & Pepper Shakers

Bathroom Light Fixture

Terra Cotta Pot

Mason Jar Storage

From Garbage to Gorgeous

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I don’t know if I ever pictured myself as someone who found so much happiness in gaining other people’s trash, but here we are.  We absolutely love this table, and the BEST part is that it was made out of a dining table that one of our neighbors threw away!

We had been planning on building a custom coffee table for a while now because we were being pretty picky about what we wanted.  So it was pretty perfect when we discovered this dining table just waiting for us to rescue it and convert it into our beautiful coffee table!  The dining table was 3.5 ft by 5 ft, and while that is a really large table for a coffee table, it fits our space perfectly.

This process was not as easy as it might look: it involved a lot of steps, but we couldn’t be happier with the end result.  This was mainly a project my husband worked on, but I’m going to do my best to go through the process!

Super Easy DIY Envelope Pillow Covers

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Over the winter we bought the world’s comfiest living room furniture set.  The cushions are super deep and so soft.  So soft and comfy that the line is actually called “Cloud.”  I think the name says it all.

We were super super brave & bought 2 bright white beautiful chairs.  The chairs each came with 2 matching white pillows, so we mixed and matched the blue and white pillows on all the furniture.  The only problem was that we were so afraid to use the white pillows!  Well, mostly I was afraid. I was worried about smearing my make up on the beautiful fabric, or spilling food, or just doing ANYTHING to them to make them dirty.  So I decided for practicality purposes I needed to put another cover on these pillows so they’re actually usable.

Our Adorable Yellow Side Table

Yellow Table

So this table isn’t vintage or antique, and it doesn’t necessarily have a cool background story.  It’s a side table from Target that I bought when I lived in my old home to use as a nightstand in my guest bedroom.

Since there wasn’t anything wrong with the table I decided to use it as a side table in our living room.  It was kind of perfect because we only really had space for one side table due to the way we laid out our furniture.

I REALLY love this table now that it’s a cheerful yellow.  It’s the same yellow we used on our dining room chairs (Twenty Carat by Behr), and I just think it brings a certain element of happiness to our room!

Updating this table was really easy:

1. I cleaned the table using TSP cleaner to remove any grease and dirt.
2. I sanded the table to ensure that the primer would stick to it. I had to be careful when sanding because this table is mostly veneer, so I didn’t want to mess that up because it could have ruined the look of the table.
3. I cleaned all of the dust off of the table. I first used a wet rag and then a dry rag to wipe it down.
4. I dissembled the drawer and put all of the hardware aside.
5. I primed the table and the face & sides of the door using Behr Stain Blocking Primer. This was the first time we’ve used this primer and we really liked it! You can find it here.
6.  After the primer dried I gave it a coat of yellow paint.  You want to make sure not to spray/paint so much paint at once that it builds up, so multiple coats of primer or paint may be necessary to get the perfect finish!
7. After a few days of letting the paint cure I added poly to the top of the table and to the shelf.  I gave them 3 coats of poly.  In between each coat I lightly sanded those areas to make sure that the poly would stick.
8. After letting the poly cure for 2 days it was ready to bring upstairs!

Our finished end table means we’re one step closer to finishing our living room!

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DIY Floor Seat/Ottoman

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So I’ve been eyeing these floor seats at various stores for some time now: the only problem was that they are so expensive to buy!  I liked the idea of having extra seating for when we have a lot of people over, and they also double as an ottoman.  Plus, they are ADORABLE. I decided to just go ahead and attempt to make my own, and although it isn’t perfect, I’m pretty impressed with how it turned out!

I used the same size measurements as the ones I saw on West Elm.  The top and bottom pieces were 24×24 and the four sides were 24×12.

I had lots of fun shopping for fabric!  I dragged my husband to the fabric store so that he had an input on the fabric decision: I didn’t want to pick out something I loved and come home and find out that he hated it!  I’m pretty sure he actually enjoyed fabric shopping because he picked out the fabric he wants on his new office chairs!

When I cut the pieces I allowed a 1/2 inch sewing seam, so my top and bottom pieces actually measured 25×25 and my four sides measured 25×13.

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Here is the bottom and the four sides laid out, with the good side of the fabric face down.  I sewed each piece to the bottom first, but I left a 1/2 inch space on each end to make room to sew the corners.  After I had attached the four sides my fabric looked like a big plus sign.