Stripey New Sunroom!

Happy last day of 2012! I thought I’d end the year with a super awesome room reveal. WOO HOO!

Our sunroom has been in a constant state of flux for the past year and a half, it is an addition to the house and it is the room we use the most. We enter and leave through the side door, we let the dog in and out through the sliders, and we use it for seating (as opposed to the living room) more often then not. So my goals for this room have always been clear:

  • It must be durable (every animal sits in this room all day long while we’re at work- claws and fur and all)
  • It must be realistic for our lifestyle (we broke, yo, and cats = painful rug death)
  • It must work with what we already have (ie, the bar and curtain rods are brown/bronze and I wasn’t going to repaint or replace them).
  • It must be sexy (because I said so)

I think I have finally achieved that goal, and I’ve been sharing sneak peeks and progress on Facebook and Twitter for the past week. But what’s a room reveal without a reminder of the nonsense we started with when we first moved in:

Here's the view from the kitchen looking into the room, at the end of the couch is the side door (cut off in the picture). This is the first room I saw when I toured the house.

Here’s the view from the kitchen looking into the room, at the end of the couch is the side door (cut off in the picture). This is the first room I saw when I toured the house.

And here's the other side of the "sunroom." It wasn't very sunny... yet.

And here’s the other side of the “sunroom.” It wasn’t very sunny… yet.

 

August of 2012 I ran a little one year later series catching up with each of the rooms, so you can check out the in between state here. That wallpaper lasted less then 24 hours and the room has spent most of its life with us a mossy green:

 

An improvement, but still not quite right.

An improvement, but still not quite right.

BUT NOW LET’S GET TO THE GOOD STUFF. The mossy green wasn’t working and the room wasn’t special enough. So, I put two coats of primer on the wall, then two coats of Behr White Truffle Paint. Then I grabbed my handy dandy laser level and went to town:

Black Friday weekend this Black & Decker laser level was seriously discounted, I got it for $12. Basically it inspired this entire room.

Black Friday weekend this Black & Decker laser level was seriously discounted, I got it for $12. Basically it inspired this entire room. And basically I want to marry it.

Seriously, without a laser level I wouldn’t have had the patience to stripe this whole room, it curved around the corners and made life so so easy.

I used the laser level to mark off foot thick stripes throughout the entire room, then Frog Tape to tape off the stripes, then I pressed each strip of tape down with a plastic card to make sure it was on extra good.

I used the laser level to mark off foot thick stripes throughout the entire room, then Frog Tape to tape off the stripes, then I pressed each strip of tape down with a plastic card to make sure it was stuck extra good. DO NOT skip this step. You’ll want to, but don’t. I’m not going to tell you this was a breeze, it took about five hours to tape off the whole room. So be ready to hang in there because it is SO worth it.

You’ll see two types of tape in the pictures- I used Scotch Blue tape for around the molding simply because I had it on hand. I used Frog Tape for my stripes- and I suggest if you want a very clean very clear line you do the same. Honestly, I never want to use Scotch tape again after this project. There really is a difference in the products (and I promise, I don’t know anyone at Frog Tape, it’s just my honest to goodness from experience opinion)- besides the crispness sof the line, the Frog Tape was way easier to pull off too.

But back on track… many hours later the room looked as so:

Bam! Tape stripes! I gave the white truffle color a day to dry and set before taping just because I was super afraid it was going to peel up (it didn't).

Bam! Tape stripes! I gave the white truffle color a day to dry and set before taping just because I was super afraid it was going to peel up (it didn’t).

It’s hard to tell in this picture, but to save paint I measured up a foot from the floor and down a foot from the ceiling and just painted the white truffle in those boundaries, since the top and bottom stripes would be gray.

The most difficult part of the taping was remember to tape inside the white truffle stripes, because the gray was the secondary color(Partridge Gray by Better Homes & Garden, color matched to Behr). I kept forgetting about that, and had to retape a few sections a few times.

Ohhhh! Ahh!!!

Ohhhh! Ahh!!!

I’m not going to lie, I was so nervous the paint was going to bleed through the tape and I’d have a million zillion touch ups to do. But here it is, no touch ups needed at all:

Oh what crisp lines you have, grandma! (anyone? anyone?)

Oh what crisp lines you have, Grandma! (anyone? anyone?)

Have I kept the suspense going long enough? Are you ready? I SAID ARE YOU READY?!!

WELCOME TO MY SUPER AWESOME SUNROOM!

WELCOME TO MY SUPER AWESOME SUNROOM!

My Nonna calls them “HGTV stripes.”

And once more, so your finger doesn’t have to scroll all the way up, here’s the before:

CYA NEVER, DARKEST SUNROOM EVER.

CYA NEVER, DARKEST SUNROOM EVER.

And the glorious after:

7

8

In case you’re interested, a quick source list:

  • The lighter color paint is Behr White Truffle, darker color is Partridge Gray by Better Homes & Gardner color matched to Behr. They both have brown undertones in them that are hard to see in this picture, but definitely help in real life to tie in the brown furniture.
  • The bar is from Bob’s Furniture
  • The chairs were from the side of the road, and redone.
  • The bench is from Christmas Tree Shops, but reupholstered.
  • The yellow curtains were made by my Nonna, the slider curtains are thermal lined and from JC Penney
  • The picture frames are from TJ Maxx

_________________________________________________________________

UPDATE: More tips, tricks, and info on painting & this room here

_________________________________________________________________


>

2012 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog and I thought I’d share a few tidbits with all you fine folks.

This blog had 27,000 views in 2012. HOLY MOLY. Thank you so much for coming and I hope you’ll continue to come, comment, and join in on the fun!

Here’s my top 5 most visited posts for the year:

  1. DIY Action Squad Link Part-ay: I redid two free chairs I found on the side of the road.
  2. How to Spray Paint & Glaze Furniture: I turned a thrift store end table to a spectacular silver glazed accent table.
  3. The Butterfly Effect of Organization: I painted and reupholstered a thrift store chair, which basically caused me to rearrange all my furniture.
  4. DIY Action Squad- ASSEMBLE!: Me and my wonderfully awesome blog buddies challenged ourselves and all of you. And FYI, you can still link up projects via #1 on this list.
  5. More On Rugs: I speculated stitching two rugs together to make one big one… and I have no idea how or why this post made the top 5.

And on my end of things, stats counter or not, here are my top 5 favorite posts for 2012 (taken out of the running are the 5 posts above):

  1. DIY Sunburst Mirror: A $0 creation that  I’m totally obsessed with
  2.  Kitchen Wall Art: I found some trash in my basement and made a treasure.
  3. Hand Stamped TV Stand: A Target TV stand customized with a sponge and leftover paint.
  4. Pink Lemonade Cupcakes: om nom nom.
  5. Chicken Puffs: So easy and a real crowd pleaser.

 

And while your snooping around here, please be sure to Like me on Facebook and/or follow me on Twitter. I put unique content on each and you don’t want to miss out!

Sneak Peak

I promised myself (and others…) that I wouldn’t blog this week but DAMN YA’ALL my sunroom is looking fine. I thought I’d post just a little sneak peak so you don’t go forgetting about me while I’m away:

 

I want to marry this laser level. That's how much I love it.

I want to marry this laser level. That’s how much I love it. Pretty sure Zsa Zsa feels the same.

 

STRIPES ARE HAPPENING.

STRIPES ARE HAPPENING.

 

 

See you Monday for befores, afters, and how to’s! Hope your holiday was merry & bright & all that jazz!

 

High 5 for Friday!

PhotobucketI’m getting back on the high 5 bandwagon this week… and oh my goodness did this week dragggggggggggg. Ugh! Did anyone else feel that way?

Anywho, here’s the highlights:

1. Matt officially wrapped up student teaching on Wednesday, which means he is 100% done with his bachelor’s (and graduating with honors!!) Such a huge feat, 10 years in the making, and I couldn’t be more proud of him. And to top it off, he’s got a teaching job all lined up too! What a stud!

This is an old picture of us, but it pretty much sums things up.

This is an old picture of us, but it pretty much sums things up.

2. I work at a college and amongst the zillion things I do, one is teach a course. And I have to say I’m so glad it’s over. Some of my students really rocked and rolled this semester, but some nosomuch. I’m ready to welcome in a new classroom of students.

3. Matt had Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday night off this week (which makes up for the fact that he’s working until 11 Thursday, Friday, and Saturday…) so we got to spend 3 lovely evenings together. A rarity when your significant other works in the evil realm of retail.

4. My Christmas shopping is DONE! I have to get Jack-a-roo (ahem, Jack, my nephew) a box of diapers but that’s about it. HOLLER. Also, I’d like to put on the record that I am literally the worst gift wrapper ever. Bags all the way!

5. I have serious projects planned around the house this weekend. I am also feeling a solid level of motivation to actually complete them. So expect 2013 to start off with a bang here on the ‘ol blog!

This is my determined face.

This is my determined face.

Now tell me… if the world had actually ended today, what do you wish you would have done? I am totally dying (heh heh) to go to Legoland. And the San Diego Zoo. So one big swoop through that part of California would have been awesome.

___

Update: Just saw this on the interwebs this morning, and THIS is totally where I will need to stay on my before I die trip.

Free Christmas Cheer

I haven’t posted much about Christmas because frankly, I haven’t done much for Christmas. I just can’t justify spending money on Christmas ornaments and decorations when I’ve got a mortgage and a car payment and I want to eat dinner. So here’s my poor man’s (almost free) Christmas cheer:

Zsa Zsa thinks the decorations are all her new toys.

Zsa Zsa thinks the decorations are all her new toys. And yes, there’s tester paint all over the walls. I swear I’ll paint this room soon.

 

I strung up all the cards we got with some red yarn and looped them around our curtain rod, the green garland is a 15 footer from the Dollar Tree, the snowman and penguin in the window and the Santa on the left were given to us, and the apothecary is a year round piece ($12 at Tj Maxx) filled with more of the same garland strand and about $8 worth of, you guessed it, Dollar Tree ornaments. Fa la la la la!

Tip: Once Christmas is over take a good look at your cards, because chances are you can cut them up and use them as gift tags next year. Take the one with the string of lights: cut in fourths it will tag four gifts! And the santa? That top corner and tip of his hat would be another great tag!

Tip: Once Christmas is over take a good look at your cards, because chances are you can cut them up and use them as gift tags next year. Take the one with the string of lights: cut in fourths it will tag four gifts! And the Santa one? That top corner with the tip of his hat would be another great tag!

 

How awesome is the Batman Santa card? He’s my favorite!!

We’re pretty stingy about who we send cards out to, we mostly send them to people we are grateful for (a friend’s mom who made us some lovely quilts, my bff and her family that adopted one of our foster dogs, etc) and family we don’t get to see too often (my godparents, some of Matt’s family in other states). But we do love getting the cards, so thank you everyone!

 

This jar is an awesome way to enjoy sparkly ornaments without having a million pieces of glitter scattered all over the house.

This jar is an awesome way to enjoy sparkly ornaments without having a million pieces of glitter scattered all over the house.

 

I can’t wait to fill this guy up with Valentine’s, Easter, Halloween, and Thanksgiving goodies as the seasons change. And maybe I’ll add one or two more jars to the mix as well.

Finishing more 95%ers.

Earlier in December I declared this would be the month I wrap up as many loose ends around the house as possible. I organized my Project Central page here on the blog,  organized my pot and pan lid covers, found a use for my extra Ikea sheepskin rug, and replaced a dingy curtain with a handmade one I had accidentally left sitting in a closet for about a year.

A few other tiny annoyances are gone now as well:

  • I moved all the mugs in my kitchen to one spot, because for some weird reason I was storing them in two separate places
  • I am no longer keeping my napkins on top of the fridge in the package they came in, but rather a cute little wire basket on top of the microwave
  • I fixed a little owl trinket I got at a craft fair a few years ago

I also resewed a pillow a certain puppy got a hold of back when he was teething:

IMG_1852

 

and after a little sewing…IMG_1883

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And we are officially testing out using salsa jars as light fixtures. A few weeks ago I posted that we had decided to test out using a  peanut butter jar as a light fixture, we’ve since switched it to salsa (it’s a little smaller) and replaced both fixtures and it’s kind of growing on me:

yes, I do have a plate of glittery Christmas trees on the sink. Because that's the only place the cats can't get them.

yes, I do have a plate of glittery Christmas trees on the sink. Because that’s the only place the cats can’t get them.

 

 

 

 

So what have you been getting done around the house? Are you ready for the holidays?!