Monday, September 5, 2011

House Updates--Kitchen, Living Room, OH MY!

We have been BUSY this weekend with house projects. First of all, I should probably tell y'all that we re-arranged the living room. This actually happened several weeks ago in order to make room for a desk so that we can extend the life of the laptop that started to shut off anytime it was moved. You can see what the living room looked like before {here}. And here's what it looks like now:


Obviously, I still need a chair for the desk!


You may have noticed that there are no longer any throw pillows. Well, after making the throw pillows, I discovered that my husband apparently has a deep seeded hatred for throw pillows and likes to throw them across the room with all his might any time they happen to occupy the same couch (not even seat) that he is. He also likes to initiate pillow fights with toddlers. Needless to say, the heat-bond slipcovers were toast in about three days. I thought about sewing them, but I actually think I'd like something a little different and have been keeping my eye out at Ross and TJ Maxx--I just have such a hard time shelling out $8-$12 on a single stinking throw pillow! Sigh.

You know what I *did* do though? I took the advice that {Amanda} and {Nessa} gave in that previously linked post and put some scrapbook paper in the back of the hutch. For those of you just tuning in, the story with the hutch is that I have always wanted to paint it, but Justin thinks painting wood is practically a mortal sin and would rather give it away to a "good home" than paint it. He really likes it and the matching buffet, and so I have tried to incorporate it into our decor, because it's his home too. I thought that the scrapbook paper was a great idea that might make it feel more contemporary without doing any damage to the wood. Also, I wanted to display some of the blue/turquoise Pyrex that I'm now the proud owner of instead of just wine glasses, and I thought it just needed a re-do. I found a packet of scrapbook paper on sale for $2.50 and thought I'd give it a go. Anyway, here it is:


I also took a cue from {Katie} and made a yarn wreath for fall:


Wreath forms were more than $10 at Michael's, so I just used some plumbing foam insulation that I duct taped together instead. In retrospect, I definitely should have used thicker foam, but oh well. Live and learn. Our door is metal, so I just hot-glued some magnets to the back to attach it to the door.


Justin has also been hard at work this weekend building shelving and a work bench in the garage. I cannot wait until we can (a) actually walk in the garage and (b) actually find the things in the garage that we're looking for:


Yes, all that bolding and caps was totally necessary. 

First, here's a "before" pic--actually from the MLS listing before we bought it:


And now:

Yep, it was totally worth all the work. Totally. I have no idea whether improvements like the kitchen and building shelves into the garage are things that we'd recoup if we ever go to sell, but they were all such small investments that really give a lot of bang for their buck in terms of us loving the house and using it to its full it's worth it to me!


  1. Scrapbook paper = genius! It adds an appropriate pop of color without being overwhelming. And your kitchen? Gorgeous! The cabinets look 10x better than they did! Good work.

  2. those are all great updates! the cabinets look AMAZING! (you're right... caps are needed) great job - it looks like a whole new place!

  3. The scrapbook paper in the hutch is awesome- it has the perfect colors for your pyrex (I LOVE VINTAGE PYREX! i have a little collection too & keep an eye out at garage sales!).

    Also... HELLO kitchen cabinets- LOVE them. The white adds the perfect contrast to the counters & floors!

  4. The hutch? TOOK YEARS OFF IT! Wow!

    The throw pillows make me sad. I am a throw-pillow-whore. It's true.

    And also? I am obsessed with your new cabinets! We also have shelving like that built in the garage and are having even MORE built! We need it big time.

    And your wreath turned out cute, and I will say that the one thing I've noticed w/ the tube is that it can get a little wonky (seen other bloggers do it). I didn't mind spending the money (maybe $7) on a straw wreath from michaels, bc in the end it really does hold its form and it's thick. I love the colors of your wreath, great job!

  5. Wow, everything looks awesome! I LOVE the cabinets. We painted our kitchen cabinets white and also painted the paneled wall - made SUCH a huge difference! If nothing else, at least it doesn't look quite as dated when you do go to sell!

  6. Wow you were busy bees in the house dept. I just love white cabinets and I think it was definitely worth all the effort. Looks so clean and fresh!

    I also love the paper in the hutch. Really makes your dishes pop!

    This long weekend was GREAT for finishing house projects. I was super busy in the home dept too!

  7. Such great updates! Your kitchen looks brand new! I love everything!

  8. Everything looks great! Your kitchen looks so much brighter, and I am a HUGE fan of scrapbook-papering the backs of cabinets. It's so easy & changes things up so much!

  9. Oh my gosh, I'm in love with it all! The cabinets are AMAZING, and I love the wreath and hutch as well.
    You did so great!

  10. It looks fabulous!!! Love the kitchen,and the living room looks great flipped around. I love that desK!

  11. Absolutely love the kitchen! You've got such a cozy-classy house, mere!

  12. Love, love, love the white cabinets and am totally jealous! Makes your kitchen look so light and airy :)

    Hubby has a deep seeded hatred towards throw pillows too! One of our couches came with a load of big fluffy pillows and about every 6 months he says we should donate them to Goodwill. I don't get it....pillows = absolute coziness :)

  13. Your wreath is adorable ~ I love it!

    I am hosting a new linky party on Wednesdays ~ FALL in Love With Your Home. I'd love for you to join in the fun.

    Have a very happy Labor day!

  14. mere, i love *everything* about the way your house looks! amazing. and the scrapbook idea - unbelievably awesome. wow.

  15. Wow! What a weekend! The living room looks really nice. My husband hates throw pillows, too. That's so funny. He always says they get in his way. ;)I like the scrapbook paper on the back of the hutch. It really brightens it up. But, I also have to say that I actually like the wood tone of the hutch, so I'm with hubby on this one. (Who would have thought I'd be up for not painting wood?)

    The kitchen looks AMAZING! Wow!

  16. Love love love the cabinets! And the wreath is so cool. I would love to make one, but alas I do not have much creativity flowing through my veins!

  17. Mere!!! Those cabinets make all the difference. What a bright space. I love how the hutch turned out... and those pyrex pieces steal the show. You need a nap after all this work.

  18. I love it all but I especially love the hutch!! What an awesome update.

  19. I'd don't even know where to start, all of those updates look great! Good work lady!


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