Sunday, February 26, 2012

Drywall Extravaganza 2012!

OK, that title is a little more exciting than the actual drywall extravaganza is.  UNLESS YOU'RE ME.  In which case, the short wall with no drywall has been stabbing you in the eyes every day for a YEAR.  Ditto for the pass-through wall which strongly resembled a mixed media piece (the medias being plaster, lath, drywall, old paint and gross trim).  Shall we do a before and after??  Oh yes, let's!

Short wall before:
Short wall after:
Yessssssss!!  OK, it's not primed or painted yet.  But still, a vast improvement!  Let's keep looking at vast improvements.  

The pass-through wall before:
The pass-through wall after:
Can you even believe it's the same wall??  OK, the dramatic lighting doesn't hurt either.  But it's SO amazing looking in person I can hardly walk by without doing a jig.  (Which makes walking through the house slow and amusing to onlookers.)

We also had the closets re-ceilinged.  This is one thing that I don't have before photos of.  Because the bare lath peeking up through the attic and rat turds raining down occasionally was too gross to photograph even for me.  Here's a midway shot of my closet, post drywall, pre-mudding:
Fred insisted on priming and repainting the closet.  Which initially I was resistant to, but just the act of taking photos like this one:
Made me realize how grungy it really was.  Ew.  A coat of primer and a coat of paint later, I was ready to move back in!

When I moved in I needed shelves in my closet and there was no time to wrangle any.  So I did what any sane lady would do, I took myself to K-Mart and let Martha provide me with some terribly made cloth shelves.  Which have been falling down and generally sucking for a while.  So my fantabulous husband-slash-carpenter made me some custom shelves last week!  Yay!  Of course I lined them in polka-dot paper and got a pink hamper to match...
And we're ready for move-in!  Shall we do another before and after?

 And after!
Yay!  (Guess who wears a lot of black?  Good thing I've got a hot pink accessory on my head all the time!)  It's such a huge relief to have this project crossed off the list.  It makes everyone in our little family feel better to not have rat turds raining down upon us but the husband is especially excited that our future children won't be cavorting with Hanta virus.  It makes me feel good to finally have some organization in my closet.  (Hey sweaters!  Haven't seen you guys in a while!)  This is a million photos for what seems like a small project.  But it's an excellent illustration of how even the smallest home project can have a million tiny steps.

There are two more exciting things on our list from this month!  The first one was a great example of so little, yet so big.  Shall we do a Where's Waldo or Where's the Home Improvement?  Before:
And after!
OK, there's a sneaky wall color in there because that first photo is really old.  But the real change is the knobs!  We finally settled on knobs that we both liked and although they do resemble golf balls, not living with the black plastic speckle knobs anymore is pretty much paradise.
Someday we'll deal with the bisque-colored appliances and the horrible vinyl floor, but for now, check out how shiny our knobs are.  Ooooh, shiny.

OK, last improvement of the past couple weeks was out on the front porch.  Before:
And after!
OK, so the summer adds an undeniable je-ne-sais-quoi to the first photo.  But the news is that we finally 86'd the slightly grody front settee and hung the lovely teak porch swing that has been sitting upstairs since our wedding.  It was a wedding gift from my parents (so thoughtful, right?)  And because they're really cute and they know that personalization is the way to make any gift great, my dad added this by hand:
Our brand!  So adorable.  

We're not sure we love the swing being hung at an angle to the porch but it provides a better view of the sunset that way.  What do you think, charming or weird?  I know straight-on or perpendicular porch swings are more common, but this angled version is sort of growing on me.  Better yet, it's reminding me that the days of enjoying the sunset with a glass of wine are coming.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Molding and Mirrors - Jan. Progress

Man, the R&R after my last China trip just hasn't been happening.  Ah well, life flies when you're having fun.  (At the moment I'm working from my couch while the husband is making home-made donuts.  It's not all bad.)  Despite the craziness and the long China trip in the middle, we did manage to make some progress in January!  The fabulous person that I'm married to surprised me by having gorgeous molding up around the pass-through when I came home!
No more jagged hole!  Wheee!!  It still looks really rough on the other side, but I usually only see it from this side, so that's awesome.

We also did another mini art-hanging rodeo.  We hung this gorgeous mirror in the kitchen:
I had a bit of a melt-down about trying to hang a mirror at the right height for one 5'3" person and one 6'1" person.  Does anyone have any advice on this subject?  Our compromise still makes me crane my neck slightly.  But the mirror is lovely and looks great in the space, it's a family piece which makes it even more special.

Next to the front door we hung some beautiful tiny pieces I bought the night before the hubs proposed.
They're really great tiny photographs of Paris and Coney Island in little shadowbox frames:
Love it!

We hung the art I made for our anniversary:
I like the way it looks in the space next to the dormer:
Cute, right?

And as a surprise for my homecoming, the husband hung this antique mirror that I'm crazy about in the bathroom:
Even though he doesn't really like it. That's love, people.  I also received an adorable vintage train case for Christmas so our bathroom is really looking up.
Of course, signs of the impending spring always help:
Happy February everyone!