Thanks for stopping by!
We are two house-loving DIYers now onto our second house. One of us has vision...and one has actual skills.
Design and working on our home are our major hobbies, whenever we have a few moments of free time not devoted to our daughter or jobs. We are hoping to share our ideas, triumphs and mistakes to help other DIYers and get new ideas from all of you!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Great Gray Grout

Hello again!  We're back...and still working on finishing up the kitchen little by little.  The new job has kept me pretty busy, and Brent has been slaving away as well, so the pace of work and documentation of said work is...a little slower.  Here's what you've missed:

1. The kitchen is now vented!  We can exhaust out through the roof.

2. The backsplash is sealed and grouted!

3. There are cabinet doors on the cabinets we kept!

Here are some pics from grouting.  We used Delorean Gray Sanded Grout from Home Depot.

The punch list is getting tiny!

  • fabricate the drawer fronts
  • spray all doors and drawer fronts that are going to be gray
  • install hardware on the new doors and drawers
  • trim above the cabinets
  • paint touch ups
  • installing the open shelves
  • the door to the mudroom (size, paint, install, hardware)
  • installing the rest of the soft closes
It was especially lovely to welcome many friends and family into our home yesterday for a little Holiday Party an d put the kitchen through its paces.  What a difference it made!  Counter space...a great place to sit and chat...a sink big enough to do all the dishes...as if we didn't already love throwing parties enough!

A post dedicated to the doors and drawers Brent is making/has made will be next!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Cafe Curtains, check!

Thanks to the wonderful skills, and gift of time from my sister-in-law, we now have the real curtains (not dishtowels) hanging! There were a few minor challenges in the process, but they came out wonderfully, and I'm loving the pop of green cheeriness they bring to the space.

We started working a few weeks ago, and noticed that the pattern had been printed slightly askew on the fabric...

But we decided that since it was an all-over pattern, and we didn't have much fabric to waste, we would embrace its askew-iness.  (Really all of these pics should be of Colleen...because she did 90% of the work...but I didn't capture that, as I was trying to absorb as much knowledge as possible.)

Our first draft of the curtains had a significant hem on the bottom, to help with hanging, but it turned out to be too bulky for them to fold back when opened, so we decided to change that.  Also, one hem needed to come up about 1/2 an inch.

So today, we finished the two remaining panels, and then did all of the bottom hems by hand with a  simple whip stitch (I say simple because I could do it) - which I did!

Waverley's Lola fabric in Garden

The remaining pieces were not too difficult today - far less thinking than was involved in the first weekend of measuring, cutting, and lining up the pattern where the panels met.

And, after a few hours, I was able to drive them home and replace the dishtowels hanging from the rings with the beautiful panels.

Unfortunately, I then met Brent at the "Sunday football club" and proceeded to get buffalo sauce into my many needle sticks :)

Here is how they turned out.

I really think the pop of green adds some warmth to the wall of white, and the cafe style softens the space and makes it feel more homey. 

They offer the perfect amount of privacy, but you can still see the greenery from the outdoors as well.

I'm really glad we decided to line the curtains - both for light control, and how they look from the outside. 
Colleen really did a great job matching up the pattern on the paired panels!
Funny thing is how there was an article on houzz.com today about how green is so in this fall.... :)  I find it so relaxing and refreshing, I don't see myself getting tired of it any time soon.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Past Project: Bathroom Facelift

One of the first rooms we painted when we moved in...here's what we started with:

Right away, we removed the claustrophobic sliding doors, and re placed them with a curtain.  Then, we tackled the floor, sink, bead bead board, and modified a box store vanity to be recessed.

We ended up with...

Wall color: Castle Path by Behr
Beadboard and trim: Swan Wing by Behr
Baskets: Aqua Smoke by Behr
Shower Curtain and Bath Mats: from Home Goods
Vanity: Home Depot (painted - need to look up the color we used)
Stain on floors: Jacobean

See how we did it below!

                                           Click here to view these pictures larger

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Baker Weekend #2

This weekend we had the luck of getting to host Larry and Elsie again!  The kitchen definitely came in handy when making snacks and supper Saturday night, as well as our bagel bar this morning.

There was relaxation, visiting, chatting, and a little bit of house work.  Brent and his parents added a touch of fall to our front yard with some cornstalks, pumpkins, and mums (BC colors, of course).  There was also a small corn-hole tournament.

The two little projects that got done were to hang the curtain hardware on the remaining two windows, (we are using our dishtowels until the curtains are done), and to install a HomeGoods bargain find for a temporary hanging of coats solution in the mudroom.  It was on clearance!  It has enough hooks to get us going, and a great little shelf.

Love the rustic feel, vintage industrial look, and imperfections.

It's a good match with the darker metals, too.

Larry was most helpful in getting these two tasks accomplished.  Thanks, Dad!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Drawer making and one change

Clearly our reno pace has slowed, thanks to two full-time jobs and some lovely company.  But, progress is still being made!  Brent is currently in the midst of building the replacement drawers for the lower base cabinets that we kept.  Instead of just changing the fronts of the old ones that were not solid wood construction, nor full extension, he decided to build them from scratch and get new hardware that is full-extension and soft-close.  

First, he had to plane all of the wood he was going to use. (He is starting with a batch of 3 drawers to begin with.)  Then be built them and finished them with polyurethane, linseed oil, and thinner.

The other house business that happened this week was one last electrician visit.  Peter was coming to install the special-order dimmer switch for the sink wall's under cabinet lights...and I had one more little job for him... 

Considering all of the decisions that had to be made, mostly before they could be tried in the space due to our time restrictions, I have loved almost every single thing we have put into the kitchen. I love the counters.  I love the gray base cabinet color.  I love the backsplash. I love the stainless island.  I love the ceiling.  I love the paint color.  I love the knobs and pulls, the sink, and the curtains.  Only ONE element has given me pause, now that it is in the space....the pendant light.  

I had originally been looking exclusively at dark metal lights, to tie in the lighting in the dining room, to give the kitchen a not-so-new feel, and to tie in the black on our fridge and stove....but then I let bargain-hunting get in the way...and I bought the beautiful, but TOO modern and shiny original light choice. (And it was hung too high originally, but that of course was fixable.)

I do love that light; it's just not the perfect fit for our kitchen.  It was a little too small, too shiny, and too "new" feeling.  Soooo I may have ordered a new light behind Brent's back. :)  Come on, I fought hard for that pendant light and I'll be darned if I don't loooOOOoooooOOOoove it!  My mother's mantra when clothes shopping always was: if you don't want to wear it tomorrow because you love it so much, don't buy it.  I think the same applies to dressing your home.  No settling. (But bargain hunting for similar looks you love at cheaper prices, always encouraged!)

In any event, I went back to the Pottery Barn pendant that I had really loved during my extensive search.  Once I started accessorizing the kitchen with the darker metal elements and put our chicken coop storage baskets under the island...I knew my original gut feeling had been the better choice. 

Brent made the best of my new decision.

It actually picks up the pattern
of the "fancy tiles" - something I hadn't even anticipated.

Another sign I am happier with this light...excessive picture-taking.  Light on!  Light off!  Pantry angle! Stove angle!  What does it look like when you walk in?  There were  no such pictures taken of the other light...

It really helps the darker stools relate to the stainless island,
repeats the chicken wire accessories, and the octagonal tiles,
as well as a little echo of my 70 cent artichoke?/pineapple? vase-thingy.

So now, I am totally in love.  We still have the other pendant if any one is looking for a really cool, slightly modern clear pendant!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Baker/Babinski Visit

We had a wonderful time from Thursday afternoon, when Larry & Elsie arrived through last night's roaring campfire at Trevor & Colleen's!

In addition to being truly wonderful family time, it was a nice break from the kitchen work.  This morning Brent got back to it by starting to work on three of the drawers he is replacing.  I think drawers are the order of business this week!

Friday, September 14, 2012

Fabric really makes a difference

We may only have one window dressed so far, but WOW what a difference the curtains make.  Not only does the pop of green weave the wall color nicely into the sink wall, but the fabric and dark hardware bring an older touch to the modern touches.

Here is one of our inspiration pictures:

From Better Homes and Gardens magazine

I think we're on the right track!

Here is how Brent and his dad modified the Target curtain hardware that was forcing the curtains too far away from the windows.  This was especially a problem because the curtains need to go behind the faucet.

Larry cutting the extra material off of the bracket.

Old-fashioned tools are still around for a reason - because they work.

Bending the curtain rod support

Brent installs the center support.

A level is your best friend when installing curtain rods.


The same will have to be done to the hardware for the window to the right.  We got smaller hardware for the smaller window near the pantry.  Tomorrow we will be bringing the curtains with us back to Stow to finish them up.