DIY Win

One of the things I would like to change in the house is the light fixtures. They are all brass, and not in the greatest shape. The first one I wanted to change was the dining room. It was probably in the worst shape of all of them. It has a glass “cage” around the chandelier part that has etched flowers on it. I don’t know about you but the only place I like etched floral glass is at my grandmas house. So my plan was to take off the glass part and the spray paint the chandelier part. Well things did not go well when I tried to take it down.

In the process of trying to take it down something broke-I still haven’t figured out what yet. Whatever it was made the light hang all weird so we just decided to not put it back up.

20130830-123202.jpg
I wasn’t too heartbroken by that. I had my heart set on a pendant light with a big drum shade. Holy crap. Why is that $100? I really liked one from West Elm but it was $199. Meh. So we took a trip to Lowes to see what we could find.

20130830-123408.jpg
Ummm can you say a lot of choices that are ugly/overpriced? I saw a tutorial on Pinterest where they took a pendant light kit and put their own shades on. I was game, considering that option was $40 compared to a base price of $100. So we bought a pendant light kit from Lowes and a nice burlap drum shade.

20130830-123615.jpg
We got it home and I was too excited that I wanted to do it right then and there. Hubby agreed begrudgingly and we got to it. The first thing we had to do was disassemble the pendant light. We had to get it so the shade is sitting on the pendant fitting, so we had to take the wiring out of the metal rod. Then we threaded it back through the rod. It came with mutliple rods so you could adjust how far it hangs from the ceiling.

20130830-123924.jpg

20130830-123932.jpg

20130830-123939.jpg
Once we got that down we turned off the power to the house. Ummm. Yeah. I didn’t take in to account that is was dark outside. We probably should have stopped but Dave has a flashlight app on his iPhone so we kept going. We followed the directions on the pendant light to wire it and it took only about 1 hour from start to finish to do everything. Yay!

20130830-124222.jpg

20130830-124228.jpg
I’m pretty happy with the result. Much better than the old brass fixture that was there before.

This weekend we are going house crazy! So basically I’m forcing Dave to take me fall decoration shopping. All of the decorations from our apartment take up one room in the house so we are going shopping! I will be posting pictures to my Instagram, so watch out for that. We also have painting the office on the books and hanging the peg board I painted. So keep an eye out for a painting post!

Have a great Labor Day!!

Spray Paint Sunday

Hello! Just wanted to drop in and say that I am in the middle of 15 projects right now. I’m working on completing at least one of them this week so I can post it!

Today I am going spray paint crazy! I got a free peg board from work, so I am painting it so I can hang it up in the office (which is still stab me in the eyes green). I also have a dresser in the office that I am sprucing up a bit-starting with painting the hardware. Lastly, I am spray painting a tray that I am putting the living room- you can see the pieces of it in the picture below.

photo 2

 

When I’m all done going paint crazy I have a few more projects swimming around in my head. I’m done traveling for work now, so I should have more time to get down and dirty.  You might even see some posts from projects not at my own house- my BFF is in the process of buying a house and it is true to the name “fixer upper.”

Something you might not know about me- I am a part-time photographer. So this fall I have a few sessions lined up that will most likely end up here! So keep a look out for that.

That’s all folks! I’m going to go finish up some projects! Catch up with ya later!

Travel Makes the Heart Grow Fonder

For real. I’ve been traveling a lot lately for work. I absolutely love it, I get to see awesome sites and people, but there really isn’t anything better than home.

Last weekend I was in Vegas baby! It was my first time, but I was there for work so I didn’t have a huge opportunity to see/do a lot, but what I did do was so much fun! I work for a haircare distributor that sells Paul Mitchell, and PM has a huge sales forum/stylist gathering every year. It is chock full of great information for the sales force. They launch new products and get everyone pumped up to go back out in the field.

It was a great first time in Vegas, but I was honestly glad to be back home on Monday in my own bed–the hotel was overbooked and my coworker (that I am really close to) and I had to share a bed. We only had a short amount of time to explore the strip, but what we did explore was awesome/really weird. I can’t wait to go back.

When I did make it back home the Hubs and I spent most of the week lounging on the couch and watching parks and rec. It was quite amazing. But on Saturday we did get up and kick some butt in the yard. A lot of the yard-front and back needs a lot of work and we barely tackled anything, but what we did accomplish felt really good. There is a lot of landscaping that needs to be done in the front yard and I just want to get in there and get my hands dirty so bad! I kind of feel like the front of our house is depressing to look at. What makes it worse is that our next door neighbors house is so freaking cute. I want to steal all her cute potted plants and put them at my house so I feel better about my house. But that is crazy so I don’t do it. Anyway, this is just a quick update on the house.

Later this week I’m hosting a craft night with all my best girlfriends, so check back for an update on what we all created!

20130818-214554.jpg

20130818-214625.jpg

20130818-214634.jpg

20130818-215832.jpg

20130818-215844.jpg

One Month Down

This post is a little behind, but I’m doing it anyway. We’ve made a lot of progress since we’ve moved in. There is still so much to do, but luckily we have the rest of our lives to get there.

Here is a run down of the things we’ve accomplished in each room/area so far: You can refer to this post to see what the house looked like pre move in.

The Living Room

We painted, and put up a few decorations. Just in the beginning phases here. I really want to recover that rocker- its suuuper comfy. There are a couple of chairs that didn’t make into the pictures that are in the corners of the room. We bring them out when we have a lot of people over.

Our plan here is:

I love the fireplace, and the mantle. Here is the plan:

1. Paint and take down old curtains- we chose Wheat Bread by Behr- Its Greige.

2. Paint Mantle

3. DIY some new curtains and pillows

4. Install Hardwoods

_DSC8357 _DSC8356 _DSC8360 _DSC8381

The Dining Room

The main thing here is the paint color.

1. Paint

2. Plate Wall

3. Stain Table- I really want this table. So I’m thinking after I stain the one we have now it can go in the basement as a game table.

4. A new light fixture- I’m in love with drum shades, so naturally I was attracted to this shade.

The Guest Bedrooms

We have painted the blue and yellow rooms, next we are going to tackle the green room.

1. Paint all rooms- one is blue , one is yellow, and one is stab me in the eye green. We are painting all the guest rooms the same color (sparrow by Behr-a nice gray) with the hopes of putting an accent wall in each one.

Sparrow

2. The blue room will be the Guest Bedroom, the Green room will be the Office, and the Yellow room with be another guest room/future nursery (way way in the future. Don’t get any ideas.)

3. There aren’t any trees on this side of the house to block light so we definitely need some blinds in these rooms so they don’t get so hot during the day.

4. Update bedding.

5. Paint accent wall- I have a gorgeous painting from my Grandma that I am basing the room around.

_DSC8379

The Hall Bathroom

I already showed you the updates in that room here, but in case you missed it we tore down all the wallpaper and painted. We also updated a few accessories/fixtures.

1. Remove Wallpaper and Paint (we chose reflecting pool by Behr- its a really light gray blue).

Reflecting Pool

2. Replace Towel bar and toilet paper holder. Add hand towel ring.

3. Replace blue countertops. They are old and they are definitely porous-they stain easily.

4. Stain cabinets.

5. New Shower Curtain/ accessories

_DSC8417 _DSC8419 _DSC8415

 

Master Bedroom/Bathroom

1. Paint Bedroom– we went with Anonymous by Behr- a pretty charcoal gray. It sounds darker than it really is.

Anonymous

2. New curtains in bedroom. I also want to create some artwork-but there are more important things first.

3. Paint Bathroom– same color as the hall bath. Reflecting Pool by Behr.

4. In the bathroom there is a door into the bathroom and then a door on the left for the closet and another door to the shower. Whoa. Someone went door crazy. We are taking out the door to the closet and shower. Its too small of a space for that many doors!

5. Replace towel rings, toilet paper holder, towel rack.

6. Replace counters- yay more blue! Stain cabinets.

7. Eventually replace the flooring- carpet in bathrooms is icky.

_DSC8374 _DSC8370 _DSC8371

 

Basement/Family Room

1. Paint walls- We went with the same color as the Living Room/Kitchen/Dining Room. Wheat Bread by Behr. For the time being anyway. I really just wanted the pink gone!

2. Remove French Doors and Install Sliding Doors. You can read that post here.

3. Buy a couch– most likely from craigslist. This will be the only place in the house with a TV. Just the way we like it.

4. Dave wants a ping pong table (anyone that wants to challenge him just name the time and place. He is amazing.) But I’m leaning more towards putting in a bar area with a small game table. I really like this. More functional for Taco Game Nights.

5. New Curtains.

6. DEBUG!!! No one has lived in the house for 3 years, so it needs some major cleaning. There are spiders everywhere! Good thing I’m not afraid of spiders.

_DSC8387 _DSC8384 _DSC8404 _DSC8409

 

That all folks. At least for now. There are about a million other things we want to do, but this weekend we have more termite control to do. More on that later.

The Only Place You Should Decorate with Wallpaper

The only place you should ever decorate with wallpaper is in hell. That is where it belongs. I feel like most wallpaper is floral (and not in a good way) and super ugly. Luckily, in our house we only have one room with wallpaper- the hall bathroom.

It was floor to ceiling red striped wallpaper, with an awesome striped wallpaper border. I don’t have a picture of the border, but it was put up with hot glue. Awesome right? It made it super easy to take down. Unfortunately, the rest of the wallpaper was not so easy to take down.

House 11

We started by getting some spray gel wallpaper remover. We scored the walls and sprayed on the remover, waited 15 minutes per the instructions and it did nothing. Meh. So we asked Google other options and decided to try hot water and vinegar. We mixed it up- 1 part vinegar to 2 parts water and put it in a spray bottle. We sprayed it on, waited a few minutes and voila! The paper, slowly but surely, started peeling off. It was a tedious process, but we got it done.

photo

We started the process early on in the week in order to get it done for that Friday, which was Taco Game Night. For those that don’t know- Taco Game Night (TGN) is a party we host at our place about once a quarter. All of our friends come over and we eat tacos, play games, and be merry. When we hosted TGN at our apartment things were a little cramped. Sometimes we had 25+ people attend in our 1,200 square foot apartment. So having it in our new home that is twice the size of our old apartment was super exciting! It was the first social gathering at our house and I of course wanted it to be perfect.

All went well until needed to take out the toilet to remove the wallpaper behind it and paint. We removed the toilet- with help from a couple YouTube videos, and started to paint. We chose a color called Reflecting Pool by Behr. Its a nice soft blue gray.

Reflecting Pool

Once we painted the entire room we bought a new wax seal to put in so we could replace the toilet. We put the seal on put the toilet and set it into place. We screwed it down, hooked the water line back up and opened the water line. As soon as the toilet filled water began leaking out at the base of the toilet. Great. So we turned the water line off and bought a new wax seal. We assumed that we had misplaced the wax seal and that was causing the water leak. Our friend Steve was in town and he yet again helped us take out the toilet and put in new wax seal. When we put the toilet back in it leaked again. Ugh.

Luckily, our friend Keith works for a plumber. He was already coming over for TGN, so he brought his tools over Friday evening before game night started. Keith discovered that the flange was cracked and needed to be replaced. A flange is a pipe fitting  that both mounts a toilet to the floor and connects the toilet drain to a drain pipe.

flange

A flange usually costs under $10, so not an expensive fix. Our flange was glued to the pipe, so it took a saw to get it out. Keith couldn’t accomplish the task before TGN, but luckily we had our master bathroom and the basement bathroom to get us through. Once Keith put the new flange in we put the toilet back in and it finally started functioning properly! Yay!

After we got the toilet installed we took a trip to Target to get some new hardware. We chose a brushed nickel towel hook rack instead of a towel bar- I feel like you can only hang one towel on a bar, but on a rack with multiple hooks it allows more towels. The old towel bar was wooden, and out of date. So it felt good to update it.

_DSC8415

We also bought a brushed nickel toilet paper holder. I was totally expecting to pay $10-12 for it. But no. It was $20. What?! Why would a toilet paper holder cost that much? I bought it anyway because I wanted it to match but good lord.

_DSC8414

After we got the new hardware installed I started thinking about decor options. I definitely want to get a new shower curtain, but I also wanted to get some items to hang on the walls. I started with couple things I already had and spray painted them.

_DSC8417 _DSC8419

I had the leaf and flower thing from our old apartment. The leaf was an earthy green color and the flower thing was a cream color. I spray painted the leaf with Rustoleum’s Lagoon and the flower thing with Krylon’s Jade. I still want to get a painting or some sort of artwork to hang next to the leaf, but for now its a big difference from where we started.

Yay Termites!

Yay Termites! Not really.

When we purchased our home we had a termite inspection done. I detailed it here. Basically, we had an inspection done and there was evidence of past termites. This means that the inspection wasn’t clean, so we couldn’t go further with the house until it came back clean-i.e. treatment. Well, the sellers decided to get another inspection done and another spot on the property came back with evidence of termites. So long story short- the sellers finally got the termite treatment done.

If you don’t know how that works, a professional termite treatment company comes out to your home and inspects the property and outside foundation. They then drill holes about 3-4 inches apart all around your house and inject a poison. The termites (who actually live underground!) are attracted to that poison, take pieces of it because they think its food and take it back to their Queen. The poison kills them and everyone is happy.

So treatment was done on our property and we got a clean inspection. We thought we were set for smooth sailing. We were wrong.

Fourth of July weekend my parents came down to visit. The week before that it rained. It rained HARD. And it was then that we discovered that the french doors in the basement were a piece of crap. We had already had an idea of how bad they were when we moved in. Every morning I would go downstairs to discover the tile in front of the door was covered with dead bugs. EW. The seals on the door were basically non existent and bugs would get through all the time. When it started raining it also did not keep the water out. We used so many towels to soak up the water.

We decided that we definitely needed to replace the doors. We chose to change out the french doors with sliding doors. Another plus to replacing the doors- the french doors were pink. No thank you.

House 33

My Dad and Dave took on the project. I’m pretty sure my Dad can fix anything. First they took of the trim surrounding the door on the inside and outside. They removed the doors from the hinges and we discovered that the door was actually too small for the opening. The previous owners just put random pieces of wood around the door to make the gaps smaller and then put trim around it to hide it.

We also discovered termite damage. Awesome. We also found a couple live termites. Really awesome. Month 8Month 9Month 10

I was freaking out a little. Maybe a lot(le). My mind automatically went to visions of termites eating our floor joists. Dave and I called the company that did the termite treatment and scheduled an appointment for them to come out and check the damage we found.

From that point we pulled all of the door frame out and didn’t find any more damage. We put in new studs surrounding the door and replaced the door frame. We bought a generic sliding door at Lowes and we discovered that it was 1/4 inch to tall for the door opening. Dave and my Dad took down the door frame and moved the ceiling of the door frame up to accommodate the taller height of the sliding door.

Month 20

Month 19

They slid the door into place and used spray foam insulation around the door to create a good seal. From there they put the new trim up and caulked the outside of the door. We put in a marble (sounds fancy, but its pretty inexpensive) threshold on the inside of the door to transition onto the tile floor.

Sliding Door 3

Sliding Door

Sliding Door 2

We are super happy with the new door. It keeps the bugs and water out. Both things that are nice when owning a home. Big Project # 1 DONE. Yay for success! It didn’t go exactly to plan but I think we both learned a lot.

 

Side Note-The termite company came out and didn’t find any further evidence or damage- yay!