Archive for October 2009

our room

this picture of our room is right after painting - we have painted this room twice, the first attempt was too light and was more baby blue. this color is silver sage from restoration hardware and we both really like it, and like how the curtains sort of blend in with the walls. we had the floors refinished, and then we just moved some random furniture in... and now it's a about 8 months later and this is the most recent picture i have.

i realized that i've written very little about our bedroom on this blog... and that's mostly because it's been kind of a disaster. we were only able to fit one dresser in our room instead of the armoire and dresser that we had in our last apartment. our closet space, while great for an old house, did not make up for the lack of armoire storage. over the last few months we have slowly been working on organizing our room, starting with organizing the closets, and more recently, by adding another smaller dresser and nightstand with drawers from craigslist. by the way, the suggestion of shellac on the interior of the dresser and drawers was a great one and the smoke smell is pretty much gone now. thanks!!

i can officially say that all of our clothes are unpacked, organized, and put away. it's way more exciting to me than it should be

so now i've moved on to the fun part - hanging art, decorating, and making the room feel uncluttered and just calm. finally.

starting with... the bed. i really want a bed. an actual bed with a headboard and bedframe that's not made out of metal. i've had my eye on the tate bed from crate and barrel for forever, but the price tag is just too much for us.besides, i would never pay that much for something that i think i could somehow make. i think that i could construct something similar using my upholstery skills and some basic wood frame construction. i'm completely confident with the headboard, but not as much with the upholstered bedframe... but i'm willing to give it a try.

i've also thought of a couple of other options. the first being to buy a wooden bedframe (or again, make something, but i've found some pretty inexpensive bedframes, the one below is from west elm and is sold separately from the headboard) and then add my own upholstered headboard.

or, make a fitted bedskirt to match the upholstered headboard? below is an example, i would not make our headboard that tall though.
any thoughts/advice/opinions? what do you like best? has anyone made a headboard and/or bed? i go back and forth... all i know for sure is that i want an upholstered headboard with buttons. the last bedskirt option seems easiest and we could probably do it rather quickly. the top option with the all upholstery frame would be the most complicated but it is what i was first drawn to... the wooden legs could also be nice because our dogs do sleep right beside the bed and i'm kind of worried about always having to wash a bedskirt (which is what we do now) or use a lint roller on an upholstered frame to remove pet fur.

i can't decide. help... am i crazy to even think about making a bedframe?

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to our future guests:

i promise that i will wash all bedding before you come to visit.
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i cannot promise that these guys will share their room with you...
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(and yes mom, i still need to hem the curtains.)

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to do: this weekend

remove smoke smell from the rest of the craigslist furniture...
i'd really like to be able to put all of my clothes away sometime soon. both of these will go in our bedroom.

(yeah, the carpet from the craigslist seller's house really was as awesome as it appears in the photos above. if by awesome you mean horrible....)

it smelled like smoke too.

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done with the hallway

remember this?
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we patched the walls and ceiling, painted the ceiling, and primed and painted the walls. and it looks so much better. it's amazing how it makes the hallway seem larger. now we just need to get light switch covers and hang up some art. that will probably only take another 6 weeks at the rate this project has been going...
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still loving the bathroom door, it looks even better now that the pink wallpaper is finally gone!

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furniture find, modified

credenza was a good guess. as soon as i saw the picture on craigslist, i was thinking that the dresser could make a good tv stand/media cabinet. here's what we've had for the past few years to hold our tv:
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mike and i actually made this stand years ago to hold his old giant tv. the tv was very very heavy and needed a big substantial stand to support its size and weight. we constructed this using mdf and a piece of butcher block from ikea that had been part of a previous project fail (i tried to make a dining table for my apartment... that didn't work out). the stand was cheap and worked well - until we got a new tv. the flat tv just didn't look right on top of this giant stand. the stand was a lot deeper than it needed to be and didn't fit very well into the space. and the shelves that we had so carefully measured to fit the dvd player, receiver, and mike's video games did not fit the new cable box. we've been looking on and off for a new tv stand for the past few years but they are so expensive and we never found one that worked perfectly for the space we had and that fit all of mike's tv/dvd/xbox/whatever else he has.

we went and looked at the dresser and decided it was almost perfect for our new tv stand... except for one big thing. it didn't have shelves behind those doors like i had hoped, it had more drawers.
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but we decided it was the closest thing we've found and we would make it work. we took the drawers out and tried to remove the runners - but they were very much glued down. i didn't want to completely ruin the piece in case we wanted to have drawers again at some point, so we decided to instead build up the bottom of each shelf. we were able to do all this with some wood scraps that we had around and only had to buy a few nicer trim pieces from lowes.
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we had lowes color match some paint to match the stain and painted the bottom of each shelf since we weren't using stain grade wood. we stained the trim piece and the inside of the dresser to match. then we drilled a few holes in the back for all of the cords...
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and the finished cabinet:
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and look, all of the media equipment is nicely hidden away. i like how the door folds open. the door on the left has 2 more shelves behind it, even more storage.
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and, the drawers are the perfect size for dvds - we can put them 2 deep. 3 more boxes unpacked! (we have a lot of dvds)
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for you super observant people, we ended up moving the other speaker over next to the radiator.
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mike "needs" all of these speakers, and i need them to not be such a big feature of the living room. i feel like they are a little less noticeable now, which is nice. the center speaker fits nicely underneath the new stand, so at least i got one out of the way :-)
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i think the drawer pulls are my favorite part :-)

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airing out our drawers

the furniture came from a house where the people had smoked for probably 50 years... 50 year old furniture + 50 years of smoke = gross smelling furniture. we've tried baking soda, vinegar water, and finally, an odor remover spray that we found at lowes. the spray seems to be working, but we left the drawers outside most of the weekend to air out. our neighbor said that she didn't want to see us airing out our drawers :-)

stay tuned for the post about what we did with the dresser, hope to have it up later today.

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furniture find

look what i found...
it came as part of a set with a matching smaller dresser (with 3 drawers) and a small nightstand. we went to look at it last night and it all ended up coming home with us! by the way, that was probably the best and easiest craiglist transaction so far! this picture is from the craiglist post, i'll post some more pictures once i get everything cleaned up and in place!

extra points if you guess what i'm going to do with it :-) i'll give you a hint - the piece pictured is not going in a bedroom.

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honest scrap

Eva over at thefourthdoor gave me the honest scrap award! I was last tagged for a similar blog thing about a year ago so it will be fun to come up with new honest/random things about myself. Thanks Eva!

Here are the rules:
- Say thanks and give a link to the presenter of the award.
- Share “10 Honest Things” about myself.
- Present this award to 7 others whose blogs I find brilliant in content and/or design, or those who have encouraged me.
- Tell those 7 people they’ve been awarded HONEST SCRAP and inform them of these guidelines in receiving.

My 10 Honest Things



1. growing up we only had one tv. my dad use to record this old house and i would get so annoyed if he wanted to watch it when i wanted to watch something else on tv. now this old house is one of the many home improvement shows that we dvr and watch on an almost weekly basis.

2. sometimes i wish that our fridge would just break already so we would have a reason to get a new one now instead of waiting for the big kitchen remodel.

3. i have been eligible to start taking the architectural registration exams for over a year and have yet to sign up for the first one. there are 7 total and i just don't feel like starting that whole studying process. this will be a goal in 2010 though.

4. we have a 2 car garage that is completely empty because the garage door is broken and fixing it is really low on the priority list.

5. i actually really enjoy putting things together. i'm looking forward to getting an ikea kitchen just because i secretly want to put together all of those cabinets myself.

6. i played lacrosse in high school and was really bad at it, but loved being part of a team sport.

7. i work in an office with 6 other people. i think that a smaller office is much better for me right now professionally, but sometimes i miss my old office of 200+ for social reasons. There was always someone to go to lunch with, lots of happy hours, and parties.

8. but i usually write blog posts while at work, something that i never would have been able to do at my old office :-)

9. for the past month i've been getting up 45 minutes earlier in the mornings to take the dogs out for walk. but now it's much darker and colder in the mornings and i'm not sure that i'll be able to keep this up all fall/winter. don't tell the dogs.

10. i still love my new camera but i wish i had more time to learn how to fully use it. i've taken a lot of photographs though!



as for awarding this to other bloggers, i've recently updated my blog link list to include most of the blogs that i follow and enjoy reading. so if you read my blog and are linked at the bottom and haven't received this award yet, i'm picking you :-)

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the hallway

funny how the smallest space seems to be taking so much time...

mike patched and sanded the walls and the ceilings. i remembered how much i hate drywall dust and how it goes everywhere.

we primed the walls, we only had oil based primer and were too lazy to go buy a whole new gallon of primer for such a small area, so now our house smells cause it's too cold to open the windows :-)

hopefully the walls and ceiling will be painted this week and i can finally post some after pictures!

we did have a great weekend though - dinner out with friends on friday, people over to watch the cardinals game on saturday, and mike's kickball game yesterday. we also went to the farmers market on saturday morning, complete with a stop by starbucks first for a pumpkin spice latte (my favorite) and then fresh homemade donuts at the market. yum!

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our weekend

we (and by we, i mean i) finally finished removing the wallpaper in the hallway. for something that i thought would take maybe an hour, i was not ok with the 3 weekends that it ended up taking.
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now on to patching the walls and painting! maybe next weekend we'll be done with this project?? at least it already looks bigger and brighter without the dark pink wallpaper!

last night we went and picked up our ebay chair. it is much larger in person than i thought it would be, but i think it looks great in our guest room. i'm even loving the yellow/orange color with our dark blue walls. mike said the color was "marigold" and i think that's probably a pretty accurate description. we will need to reupholster it eventually (the cushion in the seat is broken down) but it is completely usable for now. meanwhile, i will keep an eye out for some new fabric. and hopefully a few other accessories for the room...
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i also started a major closet/clothes/dresser/shoes organization project. right now our entire living room is covered with piles of my clothes as i sort through them all. plus i need to wash almost everything because it was stored in plastic bags for so long. i'm not going to show you a picture of that though, it's kind of embarrassing how unorganized i was! lets just put it this way... we moved in over a year ago and i still had probably 2/3rds of my clothes that had not been unpacked. yikes.

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you win some, you lose some...

so i feel the need to vent for a moment here. but let me back up to the beginning...

last week i found a chair on craigslist that i really liked. the price was really high, but i recognized the background of the photos as being the same person's house who i had bought my light fixture off of on ebay. she usually has a dozen or so mid-century items listed so i tend to check her ebay site about once a week. i decided to go look and see if she was also posting the chair on her ebay site. she was, so i placed a much lower bid on ebay and decided to just see what happen.
on monday i wrote a post about how much i heart craigslist.

tuesday morning i was checking craigslist while eating my breakfast at work. right away i spotted a set of 4 dining chairs that i really liked and felt were worth a lot more $$ than what they were listed for. they had been posted late the night before and since it was so early, i figured i was probably one of the first people to see them. mike called the seller right away and said we'd be over that evening to buy them. the seller promised to give us a call if anything else came up or if anyone else tried to buy them throughout the day.
throughout the day on tuesday mike and i both did a ton of research (as well as contacted another blogger who knows a lot more about mid-century furniture) and quickly found out that the chairs were worth a lot more. like at least 10xs the price he was asking on craigslist. as much as i liked them, we did not really need more dining chairs... our plan quickly became that we would buy them and turn around and sell them on ebay. whatever profit we made we could use towards purchasing other furniture for our house.

as soon as work was over on tuesday mike called the craigslist seller to confirm the time and location... and the guy informed mike that he had ended up selling them to "a buddy" that had come over earlier. he did not call us as he had previously promised. mike and i were very frustrated. the chairs were gone.

last night the bid ended on the other chair on ebay - we won the chair. i noticed that the ebay seller had posted some new listings. guess what she had listed? yep, the 4 chairs that were supposed to be ours from craigslist. now, i don't really know what happened, but i'm assuming that she also spotted them on craigslist, contacted the seller, and offered him more $$. i'm just annoyed that he didn't give us a chance to up our offer price. and now i get to see how much the ebay seller ends up getting for them...
i guess in the end i can't really be mad at any specific person - i am annoyed that the craigslist seller made us a promise that he didn't keep, but really, the ebay seller did the same thing that we were planning on doing - buying them on craigslist and turning them around for a (potential) profit.
but, we did get this chair, so that's exciting! i'm hoping we can go pick it up this week. the plan is for it to go in the guest room. that room is little and has a queen size bed so i've been looking for a smaller chair or bench to try to make it a little nicer. i will probably eventually reupholster it, but for now i'm hoping that the fabric is in good enough shape that we can live with it for awhile. i think that the back is my favorite part :-)

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