Friday, September 19, 2014

Upstairs Hall - Complete! - HomeGoods Gold Plank Mirror

In June, while most were outside and at play I was obsessing over storage and my upstairs hallway. I bought 2 Hemnes 4 drawer shoe cabinets from IKEA for $99 each, assembled them and spray painted the knobs gold. I had planned to eventually replace the knobs (and still may do so) but I actually like them as is. Check out my post here.

What I did not have at the time was a print or mirror to go over these cabinets. I have looked and bought and returned some things, and considered a gallery wall over these, but decided that I wanted 1 piece over these cabinets to keep it clean and simple. Since you can see my upstairs hall from my entry the more simple the better.

A two weeks ago I stopped in HomeGoods and found this mirror and loved it. It was $49.99 and I thought I was buying it for my bathroom because I need a full-length mirror. This was the only mirror like this at the store too (boo hoo!) otherwise I would have bought 2 :-). This mirror looks like wood planks that are painted a very soft gold (similar to a champagne color).

When I got home I decided to see what it might look like over my shoe cabinets and liked it, but I left the mirror on top of my shoe cabinets unhung for a week to see if I would like it after looking at it here for a few days. I didn't think the mirror would be long enough but I think it works just fine. Truth be told I wish it was like 10-12 inches longer. This mirror was just over 52 inches in length. I used the hardware from my previously hung pictures to rehang this mirror. I centered this over the 2 cabinets and hung it 6 inches from the top of the cabinets. I did hang this myself and it took about 10 minutes.

I shopped my house and found my purple candle holders (also bought at HomeGoods in late 2013) to put on the end. I want to add a plant or topiary for the other end to balance it out and to add a little greenery and life to my cabinets. I still have some styling to do, but I am happy with the look so much I am not worried that I don't have my pictures and knick knacks perfect yet.

I think the only other thing I may address is the air vent directly over my mirror. Maybe either re-cover it in something nicer and then paint it the wall color or paint the existing cover the same as the wall color to blend it in more.

My shoe cabinets...LOVE them. I cleared out all my shoes a couple weeks ago and relocated most to these shoe cabinets, some stayed in my master closet, some were thrown away, and many were taken to Goodwill. I have a closet floor I can start replacing what I donated and threw away ;-)

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Laundry Room Re-Do - Part 1

Well my To Do list just got bigger! My laundry room is now on the radar. It needed updating but it was not high on my list.

Over the summer my dryer decided it had enough and no longer got hot.  We have had this dryer repaired so many times and have basically bought the dryer a couple times just in repair costs. We decided that we didn't want to repair it again and wanted to buy the dryer that matches our newly purchased washing machine so we can stack them. Good thing too, LG is changing models and mine was on clearance! Still was expensive though!

This room is tiny, like a cubicle, so when something changes in that room it is time to start painting. I chose accessible beige by Sherwin Williams, but I prefer Glidden paints so I found the closest equivalent called aged beige. I bought satin finish.

Because the room is so small I wanted a very light color but complementary to the colors in the adjoining rooms. The color looked darker and had a greyish tone on the paint card but in my room it is very light and very beige - like an almond vanilla color.

The builder put in a cheap-o metal (I think Rubbermaid) wire shelf. I was happy to see that thing be pulled out. I hate those wire shelves! But it left 10 holes in my wall to be patched. It took 2 days to adequately cover and dry the patch.

While I was doing the drywall patch, I removed the wallpaper border, wiped down the walls, wiped down the baseboards and floor, taped off the ceiling and trim, and started to paint the trim and got a good first coat on the walls with the exception of the patched spots. I was not sure of the new color but once that first coat dried it is very light and pretty.

After sanding the patches, I put a good thick first coat on the unpainted areas, and later completed the second coat in the entire space. I liked the mint green at one time, but so happy to see it and the wallpaper border go buh-bye!

That was a 3 day job and a rush job. No exercising, making dinner, or other chores happened. But it was worth it. The washer and dryer are now stacked which adds space to the room and we repainted the walls. Since the wire shelf was removed we need storage so I am on the hunt for a tall cabinet to add in the laundry room, stay tuned for part 2 of this remodel.

Laundry Room To Do's
Paint or stain key holder
Hooks for coats
Small cabinet for detergent storage
Pictures for wall
Monday, September 15, 2014

General Finishes Gel Stained Mantle Clock

My mom gave me a light oak mantle clock at least 10 years ago. I like the clock but am over the light oak/ honey oak that ruled the 1990's and early 2000's.

I decided to use my clock as my first attempt at gel staining.  I picked up a can of the Java Gel Stain by General Finishes, I found this stain at Wood Craft. It was not the cheapest stain but I have been reading it is worth every penny and goes a long way.

I took apart the clock as much as possible and set up an area to work in. I cleaned the clock with Krud Kutter Gloss Off with a lint free cloth and let dry for 15 minutes.

The stain is like a thick pudding in consistency. I did not have any rubber gloves so I covered my hand in a ziploc baggie and then with an old sock.  I applied a thin and even coat over the clock and let dry for about 8 hours.  The first coat isn't great, but have patience, the second coat went on much easier and I chose to do a third coat to achieve a thick dark coat.
The finish was very smooth and not too shiny. I also bought the Satin Eurthane top coat but chose to not apply this to my clock because I liked the finish that the gel stain gives.

This project was a 2 day job but overall was only a couple hours.
Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Adding Small Plants and Succulents to Kitchen Window - 10 Minute Design Update

I have been hard at work on several small projects in my house. We had a couple mid-size projects happen in the past month or two that have had me busy and I have also been on a clean out mission in our fourth bedroom.

I have a To Do list/Wish List for my house that is a mile long, and I admit it can be frustrating and daunting at times. It takes time and money to do repairs and renovations and the majority of what I need done are money projects. There has to be a priority of what is completed and getting bills paid off is always the top priority.

One easy and small project that I have enjoyed was clearing out my kitchen window sill. It was pretty cluttered and full of junk. I am the first to admit that I am a clutterbug and things can start to pile up if I am not on top of things.

Small inexpensive projects are a good way for me to stay busy and a way for me to get something finished in my house. While some might think it's just a window sill, for me it is a project that made a space look much better and made me either throw out, donate or relocate items that really didn't belong in the window sill.

I bought the plants and the metal buckets (Socker) at Ikea. The buckets were $.79 and the plants were between $2-$4 each. I thought about painting the buckets or adding some color but after I got them in the window I like the simplicity of the metal buckets with the plants. I put some rocks under the 2 center plants to raise them. I also added some glass stones (I mixed Blue and Aqua), small river rocks, and floral moss to the pots (all bought at Dollar Tree).

I just did what I liked ...nothing complicated, I added blue stones to my plant on the right but will likely take them out and leave the river rock on top, I liked the way the plants looked when they all were a little different from the others.

What I like about this besides clearing the clutter, it is adds some shine (the buckets) and color with the various shades of green and blues. Plus something about plants changes the way an area looks. These little plants have been in my window for about a month and love this space.

The total cost of this project was about $15.00 and it took about 10 minutes to complete.