Saturday, May 30, 2020

Replacing Floor Registers: Small Project, Big Impact!

One thing I've been wanting to do for quite awhile (at least ever since we replaced our flooring a few years ago) is upgrade our floor registers. These utilitarian brown-ish metal ones were big eyesores next to our weathered vinyl plank floor. But despite being an extremely simple "project" to replace the floor registers, it just hasn't ranked very high on our priority list. 

Saturday, May 16, 2020

DIY Butcher Block Desk for the Home Office

Sooo, it's been nine months since my last blog post. Although given my track record the past couple years, that should come as no surprise to anyone. But I'm determined to get somewhat caught back up and start sharing projects more regularly here, even if they seem small and insignificant. (Don't hold your breath though.)

That said, I'm going to ease back into this with a look at our latest DIY project: a butcher block desk. Keep reading below for the details!

We've had two very large slabs of oak butcher block sitting in a spare room for several years (yes, years) now. They were left over from our kitchen countertop project, because we originally bought enough for a waterfall-style breakfast bar, which we did not end up doing. 

So anyway, last month we finally came to terms with the fact that we were never going to get around to making a built-in desk for an office downstairs (our original grand plan when we moved into our house)... so the butcher block now seemed like the obvious choice for creating a minimalist standalone desk. And, given that I have been working from home (due to the Covid-19 pandemic) for the past seven weeks using our dining room table as my workspace... I was beyond ready for a real, grown-up desk in an actual dedicated home office.

Sunday, August 11, 2019

Copper accents for the kitchen

I like shiny things. I can't help it. Copper accent pieces have been my weakness for awhile, but I'm trying not to overdo it. In our kitchen especially, we already have a metallic mosaic backsplash, so I gotta reign myself in. 

That said, I have found four copper items that happily reside in the kitchen (three of which happen to be purchased from Amazon, my other guilty pleasure). 

Indoor Compost Bin
In an effort to reduce my carbon footprint just a smidge, I purchased this little countertop compost bin last year. It's basically a copper pail with a lid that has a charcoal filter to absorb odors. So instead of throwing fruit and vegetable scraps (and other compostable items) in the trash, I toss them into a liner inside this little copper pail. To be clear, the pail itself does not turn food into compost -- it's just a cute, non-smelly way to contain your food scraps. Since I don't have a yard composter nor do I use compost in our yard, I take this little bin to our office when it's full and dump it into buckets which are picked up by a community composting service.

Moscow Mule Mugs
Moscow mules might be one of my favorite drinks, but surprisingly we did not own a proper vessel to drink them from until recently. Once we finished our floating shelves in the kitchen, I knew that Moscow mule mugs would be the perfect dual-purpose accent (decorative and functional!). After researching a few options on Amazon, I ended up purchasing a set of two that also came with two mini-mugs which I assume are the equivalent of a shot glass. All in all, it contributes to a nice little shelf display. 

Saturday, July 20, 2019

Master bathroom updates (and a motivation problem)

Well, this is my third post of 2019 and it's already halfway through July, so.... yeah. Figured I should come up with some kind of update to share, even though it'll be hard to top our kitchen makeover! We've been tackling a few things here and there around the house, and I've been spending more time outside this spring and summer planting new flowers and maintaining our landscaping beds.

Other than that, last month I got the itch to repaint our master bedroom and master bathroom. I'm kinda [very] over the milk chocolate shade of brown I painted them a few years ago. After painting a few samples of various "greige" shades in both our bedroom and bathroom and agonizing over which color to go with... I eventually lost all motivation to repaint all those walls yet again. Ha! It just felt too overwhelming all of a sudden. 

Yes... it's very dark in here, especially with no windows to let natural light in. I'm not sure why I ever thought this brown was a good idea...


The one thing I did follow through with, however, was to paint the trim white in the master bath (which I've done in all the rest of the rooms and just never got around to in our bathroom). I followed the same system that proved successful before -- three coats of Kilz premium primer and two coats of Sherwin Williams ProClassic interior acrylic latex.

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Styled Floating Shelves in the Kitchen

In my last blog post, I revealed the new floating shelves in our kitchen. Since then I've played around with decorating them and am actually pretty happy with the results (although I'm sure it won't be long before I'm ready to change things up again). 

First I shopped around our own house, pulling out some items we currently had on hand (including Moscow mule mugs, wine corks, and a couple mini succulent plants). But I also needed wanted more white accents for a nice contrast against the metallic backsplash and natural wood shelves. Nothing that a trip to Target and Home Goods couldn't solve! I came back with some small square plates, a couple white coffee mugs and a white coffee canister (all of which serve both functional and decorative purposes). A couple styling sessions later, this was where I ended up:

Saturday, February 2, 2019

New Floating Shelves in the Kitchen!

Hello and happy new year, friends! (Yes, it's already February, but I haven't posted here since December, soo...) You might remember that last time I shared some photos of our almost-complete kitchen, minus the floating shelves on either side of the microwave. Well I'm happy to say that we've made some good progress lately, and the shelves are finally installed! 

First of all, let me backtrack a bit before the reveal. The brackets we used were the Aksel shelf hardware from Shelfology. These things are pretty heavy-duty, so we could rest easy about the weight of the shelves and what we put on them. We installed the brackets prior to the backsplash - I'm not sure if there's actually a recommended method there, but to us it seemed easier than adding them after the backsplash. (Although it probably caused some frustration for the guy we hired to install the backsplash.)

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Our Modern Farmhouse Kitchen Makeover... almost complete!

Happy December! I don't know how it got here so fast, but then again I say that every year. My morning was spent doing some laundry and general cleaning, then running a couple errands in the blustery weather. Thrilling, I know. Now I'm trying to warm up in the basement with a Christmas movie on in the background as I fill you in on the latest developments 'round here. Which brings me to the big announcement:

Ladies and gentlemen: We. Have. A. Backsplash! I think I'm still in disbelief. It's no exaggeration when I say I thought this day might never come. It felt like ages that we were backsplash-less as we trudged through the multiple layers of our DIY kitchen renovation. In reality, it's been about two and a half years since it all really started in this room (summer 2016).

First, let's take a look at what our kitchen looked like wayyy back when we moved in (circa 2008). Because the end result is always much more impactful if you know what it looked like before!

(These were obviously taken in different lighting, but the paint color's the same in both.)

50 shades of beige, gold and orange, amiright? Then a few years ago I painted all our walls gray, which was a much-needed improvement.


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