Monday, September 8, 2014

Project begets project: DIY Kitchen Table

Sometimes the goal is quite simple.  But the path is ridiculously complicated.  For example:

I have mentioned that my kitchen leaves a bit to be desired.  But before I jump the gun on cabinets, counter tops, flooring and paint I want to know how this room wants to be used.  It doesn't have excellent communication skills, kind of like my Fireplace Room.  In fact, at times I think the two spaces have ganged up against me.

Here's the problem.  The "eat-in" part of our kitchen is just fine for our 3 person family suppers, for play date snacks, for lunch with a friend.  It is not fine for having several families over for dinner.  There's just not enough room.  But there has to be a solution.  Since we don't need room for more than 3 people on a daily basis, we'll move the bigger table and find a smaller table for the kitchen.  I had an idea where and how to use the bigger table, but finding a reasonable kitchen table was tricky.

There were several lovely and reasonable options.


West Elm:

But call me crazy (no really, it doesn't phase me in the least!)...I felt like Goldilocks trying to find a table size that was big enough for three place settings, but compact enough to keep my kitchen workable.  IKEA's 41.5 inch table was just a bit too large.  West Elm's 30 inch table was too small.  Plus, since I don't really quite know my end goal for the kitchen as a whole, I hated to put money into a new piece of furniture that may be a short-lived member of the family.

At this point, it's time to squint at what existing pieces are in the house, the attic, the garage.  Or the backyard.  Yes, the backyard!  An extra patio table.  With a piece of plywood affixed to the wrought iron, we could make the table whatever size we wanted.  Basically for free!  With plenty of pretty table linens (vintage, anyone?!), I didn't have to worry about having a perfect piece of furniture.  Just a perfect size to see how the kitchen would evolve.  Check it out (first some before excited to have a new place to use my bigger table):

This is the table that was too tight of a fit...especially if you want to pull it out for a larger crowd.  PS I can't wait to redo this kitchen!

"New" DIY table!

It's not much, but thinking outside the retail box is awfully helpful sometimes...

With a tablecloth, we have a perfect fit for now.

With vintage linens on hand, it's actually fun finding an "outfit" for our table :)

Next up...finish the playroom and finally give the Fireplace Room some purpose.  It's been such a lazy team player so far...

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Room Swap: The Our Room Edition

Ready for more room swap fun?  Time to relocate the master bedroom.  Like I mentioned in a previous post, it started to make more sense to simplify and take a smaller room as our "master".  We don't have tv's, or work spaces, or reading nooks in any of our bedrooms.  Ha, if I had a reading nook or chair of any kind in a bedroom, I'd never hang up another piece of clothing.  At least I know this about myself. 

The most beneficial thing about moving our room is the ongoing reinvention of its overall feel.  The bigger room had more than it's share of poison arrows that made it impossible to decorate.  To me, decorating is so much more than finding a color and fabrics that create a cohesive and interesting room.  "Decorating" to me is using things I love to create spaces that envelope you with a nice feeling; walls that live and breathe the aura of my family.  If you can't look at a room in my house and either smile or squint, saying "Is that another flying pig? Huh...she's an odd lady!" then I've not done what I set out to do.

Take a look at our first bedroom in "as good as I can get it" mode.  Note:  These pictures were an afterthought and done right before we started moving it...messy and bad light.  Sorry!

Eh, it was okay, but there was the struggle between the very traditional matchy hand-me-downs I had, and the way I actually wanted to decorate a bedroom.  Just. Wasn't. Working.  Especially since the door to the wonky bathroom that leads to the ONLY back door of our house is located just outside the left edge of the picture.  Weird.

Then there's this.

Again, that stack of prints didn't usually stay there, but this corner made me crazy.  Plus it was the one visible from the hallway.  I have a thing about how a room looks from a hallway.  Clutter and confusion doesn't scream "welcome to my home".  So now we change it all.

Ready, set, room swap!

My new idea for our room was a bit more homespun and bohemian than what we'd had in the past.  Mixing textures, words, images, to make a restful and happy little place to land at the end of the day.  Follow my board on Pinterest to see the ideas I've got in mind for this room. 

The snippets you'll see here are still a room in progress.  The curtains aren't finished how I want them to be.  The walls aren't showcasing everything I want them to.  The light fixture is still very...meh.  I like to take decorating and creating a space rather slowly.  Especially when I don't have a job :)  

I'll show you what we have done though.  No matter what, I can attest that I sleep way better in this little cocoon of a room.  We even overslept this morning.  Oops.  It's just that peaceful already.

I did prioritize the view from the hallway.  So far I like it. 

What do you think?

Final curtain idea in the works; walls waiting for a little texture and interest.
Gallery wall started, certainly not finished

I opted to use clothing storage as a bedside table.  It works.  The ceramic feather agrees.  So does Emily Post.

This guy.  I love my newspaper RCA dog.  Santa gave him to me last year.  Why have I not named him?!

His grandmother's, my grandmother's. Vintage family awesomeness.  Elephants and purse.  They co-exist peaceably with some favorite books of mine.

While we have a ways to go before it's how I want it, it's perfectly lovely.  It's not a grand master suite, but it's all I've ever wanted in a bedroom.  Cool and comfy.  Full of homespun love.

Grab a book, snug up under the covers, sleep well. There are rooms to finish swapping!