Home Renovations and DIY// Why I Haven’t Shared Much in the Past// Some After Pictures of Our Home

In the history of my blogging career (ha! we all know this is not a career for me), I haven’t shared much about how I decorate our house or the diy stuff I do; I’m not sure why I haven’t in the past, because it is something I dabble in regularly and it’s actually quite fun for me. Maybe it’s because I don’t consider myself an expert enough to give people a step by step tutorial on things, and I’m afraid if I try I will bore you to death; maybe it’s because there are so many home blogs out there and so many ideas on pinterest that no one needs my little ideas added to the plethora of what’s out there; maybe it’s because I know our home renovations will never be finished, and I keep waiting until they are to detail online anything we’ve worked on; maybe I don’t want people to see what I do and think “oh that’s so lame” (just being real, I definitely have issues with what people think of me sometimes); maybe I don’t want to come off as a show-off, like “look at my house, isn’t it awesome?” because it certainly could be awesome-r, and I do love our home but wouldn’t want you to think I’m braggy braggy about it. Well whatever it is, you get the idea. This blog just isn’t a diy blog…but that said, sometimes it’s just fun to see what other people are doing in there homes, and so maybe if I show you what I’m up to these days, you might get inspired to make a little change here and there on your home too!

I do enjoy changing things up in my house, but this summer has far surpassed the normal amount of changes–it really feels like a new house, at least my kids think it does, and it all started with a new couch. Really, we’ve been on the search for the perfect couch for our living room for over a year now, as our kids are growing and we just all couldn’t fit on one couch anymore without lots of groans and shoving. But our living room is very oddly shaped, with an extremely long wall butted up to a very short wall, which makes for an odd looking seating arrangement. And we have managed for seven years, but it was time. And we were just about to bite the bullet and purchase one from Bassett where we got our last sofa, when we decided to head up to the San Marcos outlet mall just one more time to make ourselves feel better about the decision (I can’t tell you how many times we’ve checked the Pottery Barn outlet mall for a perfect couch, but for some reason we thought we should do it one more time). And crazy enough, the first place we walked into, Restoration Hardware, had this grey sectional on display right in the front, and it really was one of those “aha!” moments, the only thing missing was the heavens opening up and angels singing and everything. We looked, we felt, we sat, we studied, we talked, and in less than one hour the sofa was ours and headed back to San Antonio piece by piece (and after doing a bit more research on this particular sofa, I discovered it was a custom ordered one and we got it for 60% less than the original price!)

Anyway, in came the couch, and all of a sudden our heads started swarming with ideas and plans, but then we went on our road trip so it got put on hold. But the night we got back, Luke ripped off the carpet on our stairs and the rest is history…(I’ll let the pictures do the talking).

So, here are some photos of the spaces in my house that we are thoroughly enjoying, after some labors of love this summer. And while they aren’t finished (there are empty frames on the wall waiting for something magical, and foot stools to still recover and lamp stands to spray paint), I figured if I wait until everything is perfect and finished I will never show you some of the things that we love as a family, and I’m sure it’ll never really be finished (or perfect for that matter) anyway. And also, I feel like you need to see our life as it is, even if there are things undone even in the midst of the pretty–because, sometimes it’s a beautiful mess, but sometimes it’s an ugly mess, and there’s room for that here, for sure.

Let me just say this once, I’m no interior designer, no expert, just a wife and mother trying to make a home that is comfortable, beautiful, livable, welcoming, and inspiring. I’m not detail oriented when it comes to backs of frames and insides of lamp shades, so I have no amazing tips on finishing pieces. But I do enjoy creating beautiful spaces in our home, so maybe it’ll inspire you to tackle that project that’s been staring at you for years. Because that’s what I’ve done this summer.

It hardly ever looks this clean, but we are definitely loving the space in this room–we can all comfortably snuggle, and there are still little seats to pull around the coffee table…the kids are still allowed to eat in here but they have to wash hands before diving on the couch. I have plans to make a few more throw pillows–I made two of the ones pictured here, and then I’d also like to recover the orange and white foot stool (which I found marked down to $20 at target, because it’s cute but just a little too much print for me in this room I think). Yes, I need a 16 by 20 something or other to go into the big silvery frame, but something will come to me at some point (we may just have a finger painting party or something…)
(this is a little more like a normal day for us…but doesn’t the laundry look so much better in here now?)
Some details about my gallery wall, which I’m sure will change and be adjusted with time (like, I’m considering taking some of the glass out of the frames so it’s not so reflective):
~The big print was marked down 80% at the Williams-Sonoma outlet (kind of an accident they told us, but they honored their mistake, so we lucked out). 
~The silver scrolly frames were gold and I found them at an estate sale for $15 for the pair, and I spray painted them silver (I have definitely done my fair share of painting frames…an easy and quick change)
~ most of the other art are prints I’ve cut out from my favorite calendar makers Snow & Graham that I buy every year (so this is art that keeps on giving)
~ two of the prints, the ones with words, are from a shop on etsy, Printable Wisdom, and they were $5 each, instant download (so you print them yourself)…
~The ceramic wreath is from Tuesday Morning–it was a mirror but the mirror was broken, so the price was slashed to about $7, and then I spray painted it (it was kind of an ugly color at first)
~And the framed orange squares–I painted them, just taped some squares with painter’s tape and painted away (I seriously saw something very similar at Williams-Sonoma marked down to $198.00–needless to say I made one myself.)
*The rug: we had been looking for one of these patch work rugs–they sell them at Ikea and of course online all over, so we were surprised to find this one at the West Elm outlet, for half the price of everywhere else.

I’ve used lots of brands of spray paint, and this is my favorite–it comes out the most evenly and dries super fast, I’ve had no problems with it streaking or bubbling. So there’s my two cents, for what it’s worth…

This is for a whole other post, but have I mentioned before how talented and artistic my husband is? The “Be Still” paper cutting was done by him, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to all the amazing cuttings he’s done. Every room in my house pays homage to his amazing abilities now. The frame above this has now been three colors (the spray paint thing–I love finding unique frames at thrift stores and then painting them), and then I painted the back of a cut out piece of a milk box (seriously) with black chalk paint and there you have it–my dirty secret. (also, the nail heads you can see on the wall I just dabbed with white paint so they matched the frame and looked pretty.)

The little pile of junk behind the chair is proof that I have kids….

This side table was purchased at an estate sale over 10 years ago, and is an early 1900’s school desk, complete with children’s signatures and dates from years past just inside the little drawer. It has served alot of purposes for us over the years–most recently I removed it from Julia’s closet where it was residing as an unused desk and placed it here just to see–I like it turned long wise because my arm doesn’t have to reach so far back to put my coffee cup down. The little owl was a golden yellow for a long time, but it became a victim of my spray painting frenzy too (so did the vase next to it, which was a pumpkin color, and I’m still not sure if I like the new color or not and I need something to go inside it).
Okay so there you go, that’s our living room for now. A friend of mine commented that I love grey (grey couch, grey rug, grey carpets), and so I do. It’s not for everyone, but I’ve gotten to the point where I don’t really care if I break some so-called design rules…We are really soothed by the colors in here now. You can compare for yourself with the before pictures below…

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  • I love the renovations! I am inspired to do some much needed painting over here… I should have shown you the color… there is a little 2’x2′ area in the kitchen we tried the paint on… you’ll never guess the color… gray. Ha ha ha!

    As for the foot stool… I thought you must have already recovered it, it looks like it goes perfectly in the room! πŸ™‚

    • Thanks! Well you’re the second one to say that–I’ll have to rethink it! I do like it, but all my pillows are different prints so I was thinking maybe it was just too much…it’s not gonna happen anytime soon so I have time to decide πŸ™‚

  • LOVE! It looks beautiful and comfortable and perfect for a family with kids! I also love the footstool! I thought it was pretty intentional adding a pop of color along with the side chair. I love gray right now but finding the perfect gray to paint a room is a challenge. Did you mention the exact color? Sorry if I missed it.
    I have been going back and forth about a sectional for our family room since we moved. I think our room dimensions would require something custom and custom means expensive, usually! πŸ™‚ But I love yours and glad you found The One.
    Also, I have to say that on Sunday we bought a sofa for our sitting room off of Craigslist and I swear its the exact same one as your old one. I wanted it because it was Bassett and I know it’ll hold up to our crazy bouncing crew!

  • Thanks! We used Cathedral Grey at 50% (Cathedral Grey is the color we used in our kitchen). And yay for the couch–we have loved our Bassett couch, it’s sooo comfortable and very durable…it has handled lots of wear and tear.

  • Looks beautiful and the color and other changes lighten the room up so well. Better for picture taking, right? Looks like a good napping couch too!!

  • Yes, picture taking has been so much more satisfying…there’s no greenish tint to the room anymore! and yes, this couch is sooo comfy, and all of us can stretch out on it at one time…AND we can throw off the cushions for more room (in case all of the kids just have to be around me…)

  • Beautiful, creative transformation of your space and really, those stacks of clean laundry are part of the “organic beauty”, dont you think?

    • Thank you! And yes, it definitely is part of the organic beauty–it’s nice having a new back drop for daily living!

  • hooray! I love it! . . . although, I feel like I need to come and visit to really let all those changes settle into my soul πŸ˜‰ So – everything is stunning, but a few of my favorite bits:
    1. the big print – that blue!!!
    2. your molding is done!
    3. the little table by the couch – and the lamp on it!
    4. you can fit more people than ever; awesome!
    5. the way your couch settles right underneath that window; perfect!
    6. the cut-out (of course), and the “home” print (embroidery?) that you paired it with.

    • Yay! I love that you love it! And please come, and come soon…Oh, and the “home” print–just black chalk painted on some cardboard, and then I used chalk to make that print…

  • your living room is super cute! I found it through a pin on pinterest and I love it. I’m trying to be braver about decorating and hanging things on the walls.

    • Oh thank you!!! It’s been a fun wall to play around with. I’m actually contemplating if it needs a tweak again. Who knows!