Monday, July 28, 2014

In which the Results are Revealed

Thanks for weighing in! Here were the results of the poll:

The purpose was to pick out a project to work on before my parents saw the house. After these highly conclusive results, we ... drumroll, please .... finished the breakfast bar wall. Because we're contrary like that, apparently. Basically, my husband did not want to try to move the ridiculously heavy sleeper chair from the living room to the office, so upon seeing these results he suddenly developed major enthusiasm for finishing this half-wall. Thanks to all of your for the indirect motivation!

So first, we nailed a flexible hardboard to the studs.

Breakfast bar, all opened up. 

Brett measures the board for the wall.
Isn't he handsome when he's concentrating?

We nail in the board, which successfully bends around the curved corner
without snapping off and hitting me in the face. Woohoo!

Hermie inspects the work.

No more studs! Except the one in the grey shirt.

It looks so much better already! So then we had this product I've been dying to try - beadboard wallpaper. The whole home blogging community seems to rave about it. Basically, looks and feels like real beadboard, but it goes on in a sheet like wallpaper. It's also paintable. This seemed perfect to go around that wacky curved corner. We used the Martha Stewart brand, but it's similar to the stuff below:

We had to try a couple times to mix the wallpaper paste (it clumped up the first time - guess we added the powder to the water too fast), but once we got going, it went up so easily! The hardest part was keeping up the constant vigilance necessary to prevent the dog from eating paste.

Brett and Hermie eat apply the paste.

First strip!


We still have to apply the trim and paint, which hopefully we'll do this week. More pictures then!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Tell Us What to Do. No, Really.

My parents are coming this weekend, so we probably have time to do one more project before they arrive and see the house. What should it be?

What project should we work on? free polls 

We could really use some help here.

Monday, July 14, 2014


Actually, cold. Yes, friends, a mere two months later, our refrigerator has arrived!

Pause. Admire.

I still find myself heading towards the mud room to get things from the fridge. It feels so luxurious to just be able to turn around and get what I need, no jumping over paint cans required.

We even got to put the doors back on the upper cabinets!

AND, the "easy" lighting project from hell is now complete!

Thrift store score, finally installed

Can a girl handle so much excitement in one week?

Hermione expresses our collective joy through dance.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Thrifting! Plus, A "Quick" Project, Three Days Later

So we finally did something that I've been dying to do since we bought the house: went thrifting!

We hit up a slew of architectural salvage places (Earthwise, Second Use, Ballard Reuse) and the mega Rotary Auction (for those of you not on BI, it's literally ACRES of rummage sale.) Our scores:

  • A three-foot tall wooden fork and spoon, which will become giant awesome pantry handles once there is actually a door on the pantry
  • A sweet vintage schoolhouse light 
  • A couple wood stools for our breakfast bar
  • Neato vintage hinges to replace a broken one on our bedroom door

So much fun! We are still looking for a fireplace mantle and a cabinet face for the pantry, so more forays to come!

We were tired after all that bargain-hunting, so we decided just to take on a quick project. Cue the laughter now.

We decided to hang the schoolhouse light. There was a big ceiling fan there already, so we figured it would just be a matter of taking down the fixture, maybe swapping out the mounting hardware, and voila. 

Not exactly sexy
Then we took down the fan.

And found ...

I have no words.

I have no idea how to describe the DIY solution that was holding up and wiring that fan. I'm pretty sure it was safe, but we really couldn't reuse it. Half a day, a trip to the hardware store, and a lot of help from the handy next-door neighbor later, we had light!

Apparently by this point I was too emotionally numb to remember to take a picture, so I'll post that next time. This was not the only questionable decision I made in that moment, however...

Okay, we thought. That wasn't so bad! I mean sure, it was supposed to take twenty minutes and instead it took twenty hours, but that was a one-time fluke, amirite?

So we decided to tackle the ugly sconces...

Although I do like feeling like I'm in an elevator lobby in my own house.

Guess what happened next.

Yes, that's a broken j-box. And yes, that's a half-installed sconce hanging off the wall in the background.

Hopefully we'll finish our "quick" project tonight, three days after we started it.