family room update.

I have been lacking in posts….but for good measure! My house has finally taking some revamping projects. We did two back to back projects – First up: the family room.

Remember all that wood trim in there?

7373499554_6be8155502_bSay goodbye!
We had the room painted – (sandstone by Sherwin williams) and the trim painted white. And those 18 foot ceilings got a new coat of paint too….So much more refreshing, right?! It’s crazy what a new coat of paint can do!!

We also got rid of the track lighting that was over the kitchen table, and replaced it with this light. We actually have another one on order, due to arrive in a few weeks. I think two will balance it out better and bring a little more light into the room. gave me a $15 credit, so i bought a second Tim Jaroz metal print, and finally hung those! Perfect timing!

And we got a new light fixture for the main part of the room. Previously, there was nothing there, and we were just waiting for the right fixture to come along. I really wasn’t in any hurry. We were torn between a light and a ceiling fan (I’m not much of a fan, but maybe for the RIGHT ceiling fan I’d be game?). Well the decision was made for us, when I got this light fixture at my neighbor’s garage sale for….$20!

IMG_3415 IMG_3416IMG_3412So whats next…

I need some new window treatments on the patio doors. The ones on there are off-white honeycomb blinds, so they look a little bit off. Considering getting all white ones, or possibly some bamboo shades. Opinions??  The ones I really want are below, but at $177 a pop, not sure thats ever going to be in my budget for FOUR doors….I’m also considering painting the doors a teal blue color, inspired by the one below. But since I have FOUR doors, not sure if this would be overkill….What do you think? we also have gross big gold doorknobs that I really want to replace, but don’t see this being in the budget anytime soon. Also the hinges are also gold, so even if I replace the door knobs, what do I do about those bright gold hinges? Can they be spraypainted silver? Is that even possible? For now its staying how it is…but its definitely on my wish list!
Screen Shot 2013-11-19 at 12.47.33 PM
I’m still on the hunt for the perfect rug as well. I think I really want something black and white or  basic and solid, maybe shaggy? but I keep leaning towards these busy. colorful rugs. Size is a huge factor. And most of what I see is online I’m scared to make such a purchase without seeing it in person. Itll be free to ship, but return shipping is on me in most cases…eeek!

I would love to find something black and white like on the left possibly (that one doesnt come in my size, and its out of my price range)….but the one on the right has caught my eye and could possibly be fun. I’m also scared of making such a big commitment to something and then getting sick of it in a few years…I want something that I’m 100 percent sure of! a 9×12 rug is not only kind of hard to come by that is both what I like, and affordable. (under $1000! and thats still alot, which is why this probably isnt happening anytime soon…but if you see something tell me!)
rugsI really think this is my DREAM RUG though! wowza!

Anyway, thats where we stand with the family room for now. I’m much much happier now that we said goodbye to the wood trim, and made some little improvements. I really want to work on retiling the fireplace and getting a proper mantel next in there – but that may have to wait until next year sometime –

Next up – Ill show you our transformed bathroom!

cafe curtains.

IMG_4722 copy

I finally got around to making some cafe curtains for my little kitchen window. I used milo’s old crib sheet for the fabric, so that makes me happy that I found a good way to repurpose something so special. I used this tutorial as a rough guide, and the rings and rod are from target. This really didn’t take long to accomplish at all, especially because the fabric has little crosses on it, so I was able to use those as a guide when I hemmed them.  Curtains sure are hard to photograph!

301. fireplace mantel shelf.

I said my last big home improvement project this year would be to get a fireplace mantel put in, which also meant I’d probably get it retiled too….I pinned lots and lots of ideas, and had no clue how to picture what would need to go there. I knew it needed something, the tile was just there, and it was all kind of “floating.”  So i started to research just getting a fireplace mantel shelf. Yah, that was just as confusing. What kind of wood, what kind of thickness, etc? I would have never gotten there this year. Not to mention most of the shelves i were looking at were around the $300-400 range. Wasn’t jumping at the idea of paying that much for a shelf.

Well my friend Laurie pointed out this shelf seen above at ikea. for $19.99. And it was the exact size I needed it to be. No brainer. THIS would be the shelf. We took a trip to ikea last night, and earlier today Dj hung it, and just like that the room feels more together. I’m excited (and clueless) to decorate it for holidays!

Now to find the most amazing six foot piece of artwork for above it! Suggestions welcome! Considering this, but not sure its the right one. For now, I’m pretty happy wiht the way it turned out, and shocked this came together for $20!

(also, I’m thinking if we ever paint this room a color, I’m thinking of having all that wood trim painted white. I don’t think i like it so much…)


287. photos framed.

This is kind of a lame thing to post about, but for lack of anything better (i worked ALOT this week and am heading out to a wedding in an hour) – this is about as crafty as I got today. I chose the photos and put them in the frames. Now this wall collection is complete!

280. frame configuration.

Today I did something I wanted to do for a looooong time. I hung frames. ALOT of them. Ive been wanting to have a wall of family photos since Milo was born, I just couldn’t bring myself to put it together. I had a half ass one in the condo but when we moved into the house I knew I wanted to have photos by the stairs. We don’t have a huge staircase by any means, but we definitely have the space to make something happen. I went to ikea a few months ago and bought some frames. I always buy the Ribba frame in black, and then I get home, start configuring and then realize I didn’t buy enough…So I gave up on that. I went to target last night and just picked random frames in various sizes. Then I picked from my Ikea stock, as well as some others I had laying around and just starting hanging them until I got here. And Im pretty happy with it! We recently took family photos, so I have all kinds of photos from the shoot, as well as other favorites from the past few years to get into those frames. I had a shutterfly gift certificate from two years ago that I redeemed to get the prints. So now I wait.

In the meantime, WHAT do we do with that hideous railing?? We desperately need a new one, but have no ideas where to even start. I found this, but Dj didnt really care for it…

275. more rollerblinds.

I finished my roller blind project! Once again, these were so simple to make. I knocked these two out in less than an hour. I kind of want to make rollerblinds for my whole house now…

273. roller blinds.

Our bedroom came with those cheap, vinyl roller blinds, so shortly after we moved in I bought fabric from Ikea to replace the vinyl with fabric and make roller blinds, using this tutorial. This morning I felt ambitious and thought I would attempt the small window and see what happens. Well, about 20 minutes later, I was done and I think it looks great! I used hot glue to adhere my fabric to the roller, stuck it back up in the window, put the dowel rod in, and just like that instant room make over. I still have to do two more larger windows…then maybe I will finally start hanging art on the walls.

Overall, i was shocked at how fast and easy these came together! If you are considering doing something like this…go for it! I

265. chevron pillow.

Ive pinned lots of things chevron, but cant’s say I own anything with the pattern yet. I really want a chevron rug, and I almost bought a chevron chair, but I think its too on trend and after a few years I will find myself looking to replace it. So when I realized the big pillows that came with my couch have zippered covers, I realized this would be my perfect opportunity to sew some new covers for them – and finally introduce some chevron in my life. I went safe with grey; although I think a teal or orange could be nice too.

Last summer I took my very first sewing class ever at the Needle shop in bucktown and we sewed a pillow case with an invisible zipper. So i took those skills and applied them to this giant chevron pillow. Only back then it would take me about 3 hours to make this. Now it only took me about 30-40 minutes! The pillow to the left of it, with the birdcages, is the pillow I made in that class last summer.

244. paper lined kitchen drawer.

This is the drawer we keep our silverware in. With the drawers being white, I was noticing that they were getting pretty scratched up and dirty quickly. So i thought to line them with some fabric or paper. Did a quick search on the internet to see how others are doing this, and then took a quick inventory of what I had on hand. Mod podge? Check! Contact paper? Check! Andy Warhol paper?! Check!

First, I cleaned the drawer out. Then I measured the drawer and cut the paper to fit inside. I put a thin coat of mod podge down and laid the paper on top. I topped it with another coat of mod podge. It looks like this is where alot of other people stop. I think it would be fine for a dresser, but since this is getting alot of rougher traffic, I decided to put some contact paper on top to help protect the paper. I waited for the mod podge to dry and put the contact paper on top.

Put all my contents back in the drawer, and now I’m super happy when I open it up and see all these marilyn’s smiling at me!

236. craft room curtains.

I was finally able to sew these curtains for my craft room. I cut the fabric a little shorter than I should have, so I had to make tabs to hang them. They ended up actually being a little longer than they should, but they will work just fine. Not too bad for my first time sewing curtains! You also can see the blue color we painted the craft room. It was a gross grey color (purple tones) with pale pink trim.

Craft room is coming together slowly. These helped alot!