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First Things First

Pretty much without fail when we move into a “new” home we generally start with replacing lighting. I know that may seem strange as it would make most sense to start with paint, but for me sourcing the right lighting is one of the more difficult tasks. It would seem like it would be fairly simple as my taste runs more toward the traditional side (in general) but finding the right light at the right price just tends elude me (especially vanity lighting)!

Even before I walked into our new home in Virginia Beach I had started the search for new lighting, specifically dining room, family room and eat in kitchen lighting. I found this light at World Market. Antique Whitewash Wood Bead Chandelier

It looks perfectly suited for a causal coastal vibe and at $200 it wasn’t going to break the bank. Plus I have plans to modify it by wrapping the metal rim in either sisal or leather lacing, basically making it look more upscale for very little money and effort! The other thing about this light I love is that it has 4 bulbs (40 watt each) which since I’m using LED lights I can use a higher wattage and add a dimmer to adjust brightness as necessary.

The other light I found that I’m totally excited about is for the family room. It’s from Ballard Designs and at $400 it’s not exactly cheap but I totally think that it is priced very nicely!

Bamboo 6-Light Chandelier

Unfortunately the light is backordered until July, but I plan on it setting the tone for the whole room. I’ve also decided that if for some strange reason we LOVE utilizing the fan/light combination that’s currently in the family room I can use this in the dining room, bedroom or the foyer I think it’s that versatile.

There were some other options I considered for the dining room, but I want to wait to get the bamboo light installed before I pull any triggers.

How cool is this one though? Very masculine I know, but I’m totally digging the feel of the leather and brass! It’s by Savoy House and it’ll cost about $600 depending on where you source it, but it’s pretty bad ass looking and my Hubby totally loved it of course!

    in Brown Leather Full Size

I also saw this bad boy at Lowe’s and while I like style a lot it wouldn’t jive with our dining room furniture and that furniture is not going anywhere…

Kichler Lighting Basford 21-in 6-Light Distressed Antique Gray Rustic Cage Chandelier

My hubby installed the beaded chandelier already and I’m thrilled with how it looks even if there’s no table there yet…

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We also installed these Lutron motion sensor lighting in the two master closets, it is just so convenient (or lazy) to be able to walk into the closet and not have to turn on the light. We set them to turn off after 1 minute of no movement or we can manually turn it off ourselves, which for some reason is no problem for me to turn them off but I do want them to come on automatically… go figure! Super easy to install by the way…

Another item we just “had to install” was this Lutron remote control dimmer for the master bedroom and media room. We love being able to remotely control the lights and we were used to it as we installed two of them in our KY home in the master and the media room as well. They are super easy to install as well, but if you have little kids (or maybe just irresponsible teens) you may want to find a place to store the remote so you always can find it, but I did find out that you can buy a new remote if the old one is “misplaced”…

So I have a crap ton of lights to replace, but it may be that I get to the painting before I buy more lights… we’ll have to see as I am still living in Louisville until June 1st (last day of school) and Hubby is already living in the new home like a nomad without any permanent furniture, so I don’t have a lot to do but pack and daydream about our new spaces!

While I was at the new house for Spring Break I needed a place to set my coffee etc. down while I was watching TV (this is how Hubby is living for 8 weeks!) so I found a cool antique store with lots of goodies and found this TINY table for $20! I just love it and I plan on using it in a bathroom after the “real” furniture arrives, but it is so dang cute I smile every time I see it! I mean it’s SUPER tiny!

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So I’m off to pack a few more boxes, I did a little calculation and determined that if I pack just 2 boxes a day I will be done by the time the movers come, I hope that is the case as I’m pretty much sticking to that number!

Thanks as always for stopping by…

Until next time…

K_thumb.jpg

PS Have you ever tried this Grapefruit Vodka? If not you might want to it’s delicious, I enjoy it mixed with La Croix Grapefruit Sparkling Water… they have other flavors too if you’re just not into grapefruit…

 

 

 

Master Closet Turned Dressing Room Reveal

Renovating the master closet and converting it into a dressing room has been a true labor of love for us! This renovation was just part of the overall Master Bathroom renovation, but it had a few small items we still needed to complete in order to consider it 100% done! I’ll take you through a quick photo before and after but if you’re interested in seeing more of the renovation photos and details check out my links at the end of this post.

This was the view into the closet, there was a door off of the master bathroom which is why I consider it a closet before but a “dressing room” now. My side is the first left, hubby’s side is behind mine with the most natural light (he has a tad issue with determining whether clothing is black or blue Disappointed smile)

Original closet

This is the totally unusable dormer window area, with a separate light switch for what purpose I do not know.

Original closet

This is my hubby’s side of the closet, have I mentioned enough how I hate wire shelving!

Original closet

Another shot of my side of the closet with the door that lead into the unconditioned storage space.

Original closet

Original closet layout plan

Original closet layout

Renovated closet plans

Dressing room plans

So this is our new view through the master bathroom into the new dressing room. When I was originally designing this space I was concerned about not having a door on the closet (not sure why now), so I did design the walls on either side of this hallway to be able to accommodate a future door if that was what we wanted. I can tell you with absolute certainty though I would never put a door here! I love all of the natural light that pours into the bathroom from the dressing room windows and the overall open feel of the whole design. By the way we installed a high quality exhaust fan in the bathroom that has allayed any fears about moisture I may have had.

Renovated closet into dressing room off of new master bath

My closed wardrobe area that I have setup for my “delicates” and jewelry. Clearly I have a ton of unused space, but I don’t really have anything else to store. I love it though! The doors I painted to match the IKEA brown/black color of the cabinet.

IKEA Pax wardrobe in renovated closet turned dressing room

My hanging area for dresses, skirts and long items. I love the solution we designed in order to hang the closet rod on the inclined ceiling.

Slanted ceiling hanging space in renovated closet turned dressing room

Slanted ceiling hanging space in renovated closet turned dressing room

My custom pull outs for shoes and additional storage for purses etc.

Custom built-in shoe shelves in renovated closet turned dressing room

Custom built-in shoe shelves in renovated closet turned dressing room

We used heavy duty metal closet rods from Home Depot for all of our hanging. They are very pretty and extremely strong!

Slanted ceiling clothes hanging space in renovated closet turned dressing room

My hubby made this simple hanging cabinet for my boots, but I also keep a few sweater items on top.

Custom hanging boot cabinet in renovated closet turned dressing room

More hanging space here, with custom wood tops I stained and attached to the brackets.

Renovated closet turned dressing room

Now for my hubbies side of the closet. Again using the heavy duty metal rods and custom cut and stained wood tops.

Renovated closet turned dressing room

Renovated closet turned dressing room

My husband built this small cabinet I designed to fit in this otherwise unused space.

Custom cabinet for renovated closet turned dressing room

A nice space to charge phones and decorate!

DIY shelf space for renovated closet turned dressing room

Renovated closet turned dressing room

Oh how excited my husband was when he learned he had plenty of room leftover in this cabinet for new shoes!!

IKEA Pax shoe storage in renovated closet turned dressing room

Still lots of empty shelf space!

Renovated closet turned dressing room

We custom made these dividers for his sock drawer, love them!

Custom made drawer dividers for PAX wardrobe drawers

Renovated closet turned dressing room

An just because Chewy is so nosy and cute I thought I would share this photo with you too…

Renovated closet turned dressing room with cute Schnoodle

Cute Schnoodle - Chewy

Our dogs really crack me up!

Anyway I hope you enjoyed my little tour of our completed dressing room! We are loving every square inch of it and are thrilled at how well our design has worked so well for us!

Thanks as always for stopping by and I hope that you all have a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and a wonderful New Year!!!

Until next time…

K

PS as promised other closet renovation posts:

Closet part 5

Closet part 4

Closet part 1

DIY Custom Built Organizer for our Ikea Pax Wardrobe

If you follow me on Instagram you may have seen some of the updates we have completed on the Master Closet / Dressing Room. I’m not ready to show the final reveal as I am currently in the process of spray painting the Ikea Pax Wardrobe doors, but I should be done soon!

So we decided to add three Ikea PAX brown-black wardrobes to our closet rather than building a custom setup. We already have plenty of hanging space, but my hubby needed some additional drawers and shelves for things like shoes, socks, underwear and I wanted they’re cool jewelry organizer.

Ikea Brown Black PAX Wardrobes in custom closet

We chose to buy one of the 14” deep cabinets for his shoes, but the 24” deep one for all of the organizers we wanted that aren’t available in the more shallow cabinet. I love the insert and drawer options that are available for these wardrobes, but they are missing some options I’d love to see them add at some point. I thought I could find a simple drawer organizer that would work for us, but no one seemed to have just what I was looking for so I designed a simple, no fasten system for the drawer and we built it and painted it to match the cabinet.

This really easy and simple project that consist of: 1/2 birch plywood, 5mm Poplar plywood, some white birch veneer tape.

Uniquely Yours or Mine!: Easy DIY custom Ikea Pax drawer insert

First we cut the 1/2” plywood to height and width and then I adhered (with an iron) the veneer tape to the top edge of the board. After the veneer had cooled we trimmed the veneer and sanded the edges. Then using our table saw we ran the boards through 3 times, moving the blade out a little each pass to cut about 1/4” notches on each board at the desired locations.

Uniquely Yours or Mine!: Easy DIY custom Ikea Pax drawer insert

We then placed the boards in the front and back of the drawer and measured for the length of the dividers. We then cut the 5mm plywood to length and width and sanded all of the pieces with 220 grit paper.

Uniquely Yours or Mine!: Easy DIY custom Ikea Pax drawer insert

I spray painted all of the pieces with Benjamin Moore Advance Satin black brown paint that I had custom matched to the Ikea black-brown color perfectly! I took one of the shelves from the wardrobe to my local Benjamin Moore Store and had them color match to it, it was a little bit of a process to get it just right, but they did a fabulous job! I had looked and looked online for a formula or a color someone else had found already, but there was nothing that truly matched it that I could find. I am a HUGE fan of Benjamin Moore paints and their stores, they seem to employ very knowledgeable “paint people” and if need be I can call ahead and have my paint mixed and ready for pickup when I get there… just all around great customer service! I use Bluegrass Paint & Decorating here in Louisville, but when I lived in Richmond I used Virginia Paint Company.

Here is a picture of the Ikea Black-Brown paint formula for those that may need it, created in Benjamin Moore Advance Satin paint Base 4.

Ikea brown black paint color formula match Benjamin Moore

The front and back slotted 1/2” plywood pieces are only held in place by the tension of the divider pieces which allows this system to be easily removed or changed around if necessary. Love me some organized drawers even if they’re not “mine”!!!

Uniquely Yours or Mine!: Easy DIY custom Ikea Pax drawer insert

Hope you are all enjoying some nice Fall weather and as always thanks so much for stopping by…

Until next time!

K

Thonet Chairs Refinishing Complete!

Well Happy 2016 to you all! Over at our home we had a very busy Christmas Holiday with our normal household of 3 humans and 2 dogs increasing to 9 humans and 4 dogs!!! It was crazy and lots of fun, but I’m glad we’re back to normal capacity now! Believe it or not I did get the Thonet chairs finished by Thanksgiving and I would have posted about them earlier, but with all of the blogosphere hyper focused on Christmas decorating I felt like this little post might get lost in the shuffle and I totally think it’s worth checking out… just saying Open-mouthed smile

So you may remember that I started off with this set (plus a couple more I picked up later) of Thonet chairs. (If not you can check out the post I wrote on the refinishing process here) Man have I forgotten how ugly these were to begin with!!

Vintage Thonet Chairs

This is where I left off while I moved on to refinishing the farmhouse table, see I wasn’t 100%sure how I wanted them finished so they sat here empty for a couple of weeks as I thought on it…

Vintage Thonet Chair Update

I had initially thought I wanted to use faux leather on the seats to help with the inevitable cleanup, but after looking at several (let say 10 or so) samples I couldn’t find one that I liked enough… they were either too shiny, too fake looking or just not the right shade. So I ended up finding this very extremely soft grey crocodile embossed velvet.

Velvet Croc Zinc Fabric

Of course this fabric was the most expensive fabric I looked at (isn’t that how it always goes!), at $28.00 a yard, but I only needed 3 yards. The cost breakdown of the chairs is: $80/set of 8 chairs + fabric $92 + paint $25 + $10 repair product = $207 or $26 per chair, which is pretty freaking awesome don’t you think!?

To reupholster the seat cushions I just cut the fabric off, using a sharp knife and cutting as close to the staples as possible. There were a ton of staples and honestly I just didn’t want to remove them, had I been upholstering these for someone else I would have probably started with a new wood seat and foam as that would have been less time consuming than removing all of the staples.

Reupholstering chair seats

I chose to leave the original bottoms (less the previous owners address stickers) and stapled the fabric right near the old staples, it worked like a charm and only took me about an hour to do all 8 seats. Having said that though I should mention that I do have an electric stapler that uses very fine staples, I would never have been able to recover them so quickly with a manual staple gun, you know the old saying about using the right tools for the job!!

Look at that gorgeous velvet!

Reupholstered Thonet Chair Seats

Originally I was thinking I would paint the chairs grey (which is why I used a grey primer) but once I found my fabric I decided to paint the chairs Benjamin Moore’s Linen White in Advance Satin. I sprayed about 4 light coats on each of the chairs, which would have been less had I primed them with white primer instead of gray Baring teeth smile but oh well!

Updated Thonet chair set, new upholstery and paint

I tried to get a good picture of an area that I repaired, I will say that the repairs are about 99.9% invisible! I think they look like they were built this way originally and I’m pretty proud of the job I did…

Repaired Thonet chair backs

Updated Thonet chair set

I’m really digging the different shades of “white” I used, it helps make the table feel like it is less of a set and more of a collection… if that makes sense?!

Thonet chair set and farmhouse table updated

Now that I have all 8 chairs in they really are a little snug around the table, but one day I will be able to used both ends of the table and it will be the perfect amount of chairs! I love the finished look of the chairs and I am so happy I took the time to update them. I hope this post may inspire you one day to take on a project like this, it really was pretty simple!

Thanks as always for stopping by! By the way I’d love to hear what you think about this project!

K

The Master Closet Remodel Part. 1

We had SOOO much fun this weekend starting on our master closet remodel / renovation. Lots of drywall dust, carpet crud and insulation removing fun! Here is a recap from the beginning…

Our closet is located off of the master bath, on the end of the house over the garage. It was by far the largest closet we saw while house hunting here in Louisville (which is just one of the reasons we loved this house). Having said that though it has some “issues”, it’s layout is awkward and it’s chilly in there in the winter. As a side note we have already replaced the 2 windows so we are assuming the problem is in the way it was (or was not) insulated.

This is the view looking into the closet from the bathroom:

Master closet renovation remodel

This is my side of the closet. The door you see is access to the unfinished area that slopes down to the garage side walls, it’s large but freaking cold and we didn’t really use it.

Master closet renovation remodel

This is my hubby’s side of the closet, lots of nice natural light on this side, which he totally needed in order to help him determine blue from black suits…

Master closet renovation remodel

Here is the original layout of the master closet, just LOOK at all of that unused space marked “storage”!

Master closet renovation remodel

Below is the most recent plan for the new space, but since we are building the units ourselves this plan is certainly subject to change.master closet plans

One of the closet walls is being moved back in order to enlarge the shower, which is on the other side of that wall. Also, we will be removing the walls on both storage sides of the closet and installing a new knee wall 4 ft. back from the original walls. These changes will make the new walls about 5ft. tall (the original walls were 8ft. tall) and give us an additional 63 sq. ft. of closet space.

I was just thrilled with the space after we removed the center wall, the light just fills the room now… By the way there are 2 windows in the closet, the one you see pictured and the dormer window on the front of the house.

Master closet renovation remodel

We are saving all of the lumber we can so that they can be used to create the new walls. We removed all of the nails out of the wood before removing them from the wall.

Master closet renovation remodel

Now on to opening the side walls. There was insulation in these walls, but only R-13 which I think is the minimum for our zone. We did not save it to reuse as we will need to insulate this room better. This is the unfinished area on the left that they had setup as extra storage space.

Master closet renovation remodel

We then hit a “little” snag… my Hubby was a tad overzealous and started removing some of the vertical 2×4’s before we had a good look at the wall structure. Once we did we stopped removing the 2×4’s. See we’re not 100% sure if this is a load bearing wall or not. See photo of top of the wall below.

Master closet renovation remodel

See the 2×6 beams going across the ceiling of the room appear to be resting somewhat on the wall. Most of the beams appear to be nailed in with 2 nails on one side to the rafters but that doesn’t seems like enough support to us. After HOURS of research we think those beams are collar ties that also happen to be used as the ceiling structure, however we’re just not sure. To be 100% sure we’re having a contractor come by and look at it, if he’s not sure I’ll have a structural engineer come by and take a gander. You don’t happen to be a structural engineer who might know what’s going on here?

 Master closet renovation remodel

We moved on to removing the sheetrock on the other side of the room. This is another extra storage space that they had access to from the bathroom. I think they called this the “suitcase storage” on the realtor listing… again a VERY cold space. Same deal with the walls seeming to support collar ties?!

That’s where we finished up on Sunday. We filled up a bunch of bags of debris and cleaned up as much as possible, but we’re at a standstill until we here about the walls. Luckily we have a door on this room so it’s coldness can be closed off from the rest of the house… BRR!!

If you have any suggestions or ideas about these walls or the space please comment below! Thanks as always for stopping by!

Until next time…

K

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