Saturday, July 30, 2016

Have you ever felt like your home is a money pit?! If yes, then you are not alone.  From the time we moved in, we had two major projects that needed to be checked off the list--one (the plumbing) to guarantee our homeowner's insurance, and two, a shake roof that had seen better days.  First we did the plumbing (which at least we can rest at night knowing it wasn't going to spontaneously burst). That was a big one. Like we could have redone a small bathroom with that project dinero.  Next, was the shake roof.  It was in bad shape, and we are in a somewhat risky area in terms of fires, so, we bit that bullet.  I longed for a metal farmhouse roof--you know, like that beautiful house of Joanna Gaines from "Fixer Upper", but we ultimately decided it may be a bit too progressive for our neighborhood, and by that, I mean the HOA. After much deliberation, and a major compromise with hubs, we chose a faux shake roof.  At first, I was not sure it was worth the extra expense, however, I do think it keeps the character of the house without the fire risk!  We've been using some of the old shake roofing as fire starters, and boy-oh-boy, they work awesome!  Sure glad those little firecrackers are off of our roof now!

With all these major projects done, our "fun money" wasn't around to do projects inside the house, that I found to be more "important".  I had some creative energy, with a small budget, so I set out on my first project: the laundry room.  One might ask why this area was needing some love? Well, when they did the plumbing, they left us with some really "interesting" texture that I couldn't stand much longer, and a white paint color that was a sight for sore eyes.  I've been following a blogger for a while now, and had seen how beautiful her house had looked after "planking" just about every nook and cranny in it. Truly, she is super talented.  I have no idea where she finds the time to keep her house looking super clean, homeschool, and do all sorts of home improvement projects.  That being said, I wanted to have this sweet touch to my laundry room. You heard me right. MY laundry room.  Much of my time is spent here as a momma, and I felt it should be a room that was refreshing to walk into, not dread--my own little slice of heaven.

One weekend, I felt ambitious. Probably more ambitious than I should have.  The hubs was out of town, and the laundry room beckoned. It was a loud call.  I couldn't say no.  Home Depot called me and said to stop by, grab some wood, grab some paint, and get after it. Thankfully, my sweet mom and dad are usually on board with my whims and shenanigans, and came on over to help out.

I might add, my first attempt at painting cabinetry was with milk paint.  I was not a fan, especially because the dark gray I chose appeared purple in the room's lighting.  I ended up using Home Depot's Behr Paint, which has held up fine, but I have since found my gold standard at Sherwin Williams. Ready for some pictures?!

Like I said before, I'm horrible at remembering to take pictures before I start a project.  I get a whim, and I just go. Then, I realize all the cupboards are gone and I have no proof in pictures to show the difference all my efforts have made.  You won't see the super dirty, gunked-up oak cabinets in these pictures, but you can take my word for it, each coat of paint made them look a thousand times better! They were bad!

Here is my sweet dad, assessing the walls before planking.  As you can see, I also had the countertop replaced with Wilsonart's Calcutta Laminate from Home Depot.  Isn't she pretty?  If you gotta do laundry, you might as well feel fancy while you do it!

A little before and after shot.  Don't mind my laundry basket.  I need to find a better "white" spray paint...but that's for another day, on another dollar. Oh, and if you look carefully, you can see that I put some cabinets back upside down.  He he. The washer and dryer are now stacked in the corner, but I couldn't figure out how to nicely snap a pic...that can be for another day, when I'm a little better with my camera.
And here is a little more recently.  And I still haven't addressed the weird white paint on the laundry basket. Procrastination is a virtue, I'm told.  That's what cropping is for, right?

Hope you enjoyed this project. Have a great weekend!  If you want to check out the blog that inspired this project, go to .


Friday, July 29, 2016

My Inspiration Pictures.

I can't say I've found one picture that has it all, but I think I've got it just about all the pieces figured out. Calacatta gold hex tiles currently make my heart pitter patter, so those will hopefully be the winner for the shower tile. This picture has the white subways which are definitely a steal by price.  However, I somehow managed to pick the one white subway at the store that cost $20/sq foot.  I kid you not. I looked at it. I lusted. I knew this had to be the one.  Then, I got real.  I put it back, and decided every piece did not have to be "the best" they just had "to work" with my vision. Here is the more appropriately priced tile that I'm going to go with (both subway and hex tile).
Mill Valley Estate bathroom. Shower niche tile is calacatta hexagon - Kcs, inc.:

And in case you are curious, here is a pic of the Walker Zanger subways that were perfect, but a definite budget breaker.  They are beautiful. I want to marry them. And it's called "Cafe".  Just look at how perfect she looks there with that espresso.  Okay, the show must go on.

Milk 3'' x 12''

And for the vanity, something a bit rustic like this, with a wee bit of fancy marble added to boot. I live in Idaho.  Not Iowa. Not Indiana. Not Illinois. Idaho. The shipping here for this bad boy could feed my house for a couple months.  So this guy is just my inspiration, but won't be the final winner.

Printmaker's Single Washstand

Photo Credit

Flooring.  This has been a struggle. A real struggle.  The hubs has an opinion, and I might add, not a bad one in terms of design.  So, we are compromising.  I longed for wood tiles, but they just weren't realistic with the real wood/flow of the rest of our house.  Thus, we've settled on a travertine.  A real one.  One that patinas.  Yes, I know it will get dirty, but we've both decided to take the risk, because we like the look. Something kind of like this picture is the goal.
Use Bellstone's Pewter travertine - tumbled to make your house look this beautiful!:

There ya have it!  A little bit rustic mixed with a little bit of elegance. Let me know what you think!

Stay tuned for tomorrow.  I'll share my first big DIY project: shiplap laundry room makeover. Here's a sneak peak!
 Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, July 28, 2016

The Gray Abode.

Two years ago, we bought our forever home.  It boasted a beautiful view, a farmhouse feel, and several areas that were begging to be painted, cleaned, upgraded, and loved.  We are about to embark on the "bigger" changes and I thought it might be fun to share our journey.

Decorating/designing does not come naturally to me, however, I do appreciate the art.  Thank goodness for Houzz and Pinterest, because this girl would be lost without it!  For the last month or so, I have been pinning/Houzzing (is that a word?) like crazy!  If I had to describe my current style it would be a little fancy and a little rustic.

Our first "big" project that will actually be fun is our guest bath (downstairs) update.  We've done two large projects (and by large, I mean big money, but little return on fun) that included a new roof and plumbing that would not spontaneously explode (that's for another post).  Both were necessary, and trumped my "need" for new bathrooms.  This bathroom is totally functional and is the main bathroom for us downstairs (because its the only one).  Oddly enough, I actually shower down here because I have anxiety stepping into our master shower.  It's weird, I know.

Maybe a year into moving in, I decided to ditch the dark brownish paint that was in there for Benjamin Moore's Revere Pewter (per suggestion of my very talented MIL).  I loved the color, however, it does not love anything that was pre-existing in this bathroom.  The shower, vanity, and super awesome linoleum--I felt I had done this beautiful paint an injustice with such terrible pairings, however, I was short on time, short on patience, and short on ideas. It was an improvement, but the inevitable still lingered--we needed to update.

Fast forward almost a year and we are finally talking with a contractor, and getting our ducks in a row. It would be a lie if I said I was not overwhelmed. When it comes to decisions, I'm terrible. I'm terrified of screwing up, especially when a substantial amount of cash is on the line.  Sigh. Deep cleansing breaths.

So, welcome to my home.

So, I'm terrible on taking before pictures (in time) so here is an in between bathroom picture from my phone (because I wasn't planning on ever posting about it).  This is the dark brown from before.

Here is the "in between" with Revere Pewter.

It's not a bad bathroom, there is just some lack of harmony going on with the colors.  I added a gray color to the walls, and there are a lot of warmer tones already present.  Now, we just need to find the balance.

My current dilemma is if I should keep this vanity, or just start from scratch.  I've gotten pretty good at painting these bad boys in the last year (since this oak style is throughout our entire house).  However, I'd kind of like a little bit of a rustic looking/antique piece here.  I've got my work cut out!