Beautification Project, Take one

4 Aug
This past weekend the NYBoys and the BFF descended into my town to help me put my house to rights.  For the past 2 months, since we moved to the new house, I been freaking the hell out and shouting to Tom every chance I get  “Don’t put it there, its going to be moved by the design team”… “Wait, don’t hang that there, its going to be moved by the design team”. I’m surprise he did not loose his shit completely and left me.

But this weekend, the design team arrived and we set to work.  You are probably ready to see some major before and after pictures right?

Sometimes we don’t get what we want.

The pictures you are going to see are those of “AFTER” only. Because, during the moving, shoving, painting, drinking, eating, and painting the designer toes black, I totally loss my head and did not take “BEFORE” pictures. YES, I’M a total DOUCHE-BAG!  So, yes, Internet, I’m short changing you on this one. You will not be able to see how badly the before was.  But the AFTER?  Holy sweet baby Jesus – it’s BEAUTIFUL.

Let’s start by telling you that the house has a weird layout, the stairs to access the bedrooms upstairs are located smack in the middle of the house, dividing the living room/entry into two weird, long areas. One, to the left of the front door, and the other to the right. Originally, my thinking process was that the area, closest to the entrance was going to be a library/sitting area, and on the other side of the stairs, the living room, or in our case the TV room.

After not much debate we got to work and it was decided the best course of action was place the dinning room in the original sitting/entrance area… and the living room was just going to have a major overhaul.  Here is the new dinning room:

The new Dinning Room

The table was Tom’s, the chairs were our housewarming gift from the NYBoys, as well as the carpet, both bought at IKEA(where else!) and both a super bargain, they look way more expensive that what they paid for.  The bookcases are also from IKEA, and the rest of the trinkets are from all over, TJMaxx, Marshall, Homegoods

I love the way the room came out, we had dinner and breakfast during the weekend and its cozy, bright and perfect.  We realized that we could actually fit two more chairs, and eventually we will add them to the set, sitting for six is always better than four.
Next up is the other side of the room, which is the Living/TV room:
The TV/Living Room

The TV/Living Room

Now this room holds more meaning to Tom, mainly because there is a full wall of his drawings and he has never had his artwork fully displayed before, so he is a bit in awe that we choose to go that way.  I personally LOVE the wall with his drawings on it, its my present to him.  Here is a close up of his black and white.  The colorful painting above the IKEA chair on the other side of the room, next to the palm tree is also his work.


Again, in this room we bought the TV stand from IKEA, the couch (my contribution to the merging of household) color is actually white, but with 4 animals in the house, it showed a bit of wear and tear, and with a limited budget, we could not go out and spend the money on the couch we wanted (at least not yet), so Target came to the rescue with the stretched furniture cover in Teal.  The white pillows will be covered with a print fabric that we got in IKEA and I can not wait for that, since it will give it an extra punch.
The next room was the kitchen area.  Since we placed the dinning room in the entry way, we needed to fill up the nook in one of the corners of the kitchen.  Let me tell you, this is my favorite room in the house.  I love to have people in the kitchen with me while I’m cooking, and naturally most of my family and friends gravitate towards this room anyways.  So it made sense to have a sitting-get-together area in the most beloved spot of the house.
Here we did major overhaul on a piece of furniture that Tom brought from his bachelor days.  It use to be his bedroom dresser and I sort of took it and converted it to a kitchen cabinet, where it holds our dishes, platters and other kitchen stuff.  I originally wanted to paint it bright RED, but then opted to use a dark green color.  This is what it looked like before we started:
Say Cheese!

Say Cheese!

After 3 coats of paint, lots of wine drinking and no paint fumes (the new BEHR, paint with primer, totally worth it – we love, and I mean LOVED that paint and of course saving the step of priming before hand) this is what it looked like:


This is how we dressed it up:
All Dressed up for the ball!

All Dressed up for the ball!

The mirror was a previous present from the NYBoys, and they got it at TJMaxx for peanuts!  The lamp is my favorite lamp in the whole house and it looks great in the corner.  The fish was the BFF contribution, we saw it in Z Gallerie and could not pass up the 40% discount.  And it looks like it was made to be there.  The coconut cake was for Saturday’s dinner party and I’m sorry to say, its all gone.  This ensembles makes part of the Kitchen nook, as I like to call it, and the finish space ended up looking like this:
My spot

My spot

Out of all the areas decorated, this is by far my favorite (do I keep saying that?).  The love-seat is comfy and I love to sit on it and browse cookbooks, plan dinner parties or chill while Tom is in the kitchen cooking.  It’s again bright (the best part of this house, there are windows in every room) and cheerful and a great place to just relax.  As you can see the designer and Maggie took a snooze when we completed the project:


So after 4 days, that is what was done to the downstairs of the house.  We love all the changes and the feeling we get when we get home now.  Everything has a place and the feeling is amazing.  We are not done yet.  We are planning on painting the kitchen cabinets, and the back room needs to be completly organized, right now its pretty much the dumping ground of everything that still has to be placed on the outside shed.  We still have our master bedroom to do as well, but we are now super confident that we have the chops to complet it without the help of my lifeline – the NYBoys and the BFF.  Now I know why those people cry when they see their finished projects.
And if you ever wondered why Interiors Designers get paid the HUGE chuck of money… I can tell you it’ss because they ARE TOTALLY WORTH EVERY PENNY.

10 Responses to “Beautification Project, Take one”

  1. margauxhf August 4, 2009 at 1:09 pm #

    I adore what you did with the dresser. It looks absolutely wonderful green!

  2. Javier C. August 4, 2009 at 2:00 pm #

    Isn’t the couch too close to that TV?

  3. Monica August 4, 2009 at 2:09 pm #

    Margauxhf – Thanks! I love how it turned out as well… I guess I’m in a “Green” color capsule now, because there are touches of green everywhere around the house.

    Javier – We have no choice, since the room is very narrow, but while it seems its very close, its actually at a comfortable distance.

  4. Mo August 4, 2009 at 4:18 pm #



  5. Angie November 2, 2009 at 5:29 pm #

    Just had to tell you that the green dresser is AMAZING. Love Love Love it. So much in fact that I am going to use that color as my third color for my guest bedroom re-do to baby room (in not to distant future). Thanks for posting….I saw it via YHL. Keep up the great work and good luck with the master bedroom!

  6. Liz November 2, 2009 at 6:14 pm #

    Just hopped over from Young House Love. Fabulous makeover!

  7. alison November 13, 2009 at 3:40 pm #

    gorge! from yhl as well… i’ve been debating a desk downstairs in a strong red or green…and now i may be swayed to the green side of the fence! again, love it!

  8. Karen January 8, 2010 at 11:13 am #

    LOVE that dresser. I have a smaller one in my living room that is currently painted burnt orange. I think I’m going to re-do it in green. Thanks for the inspiration.

    I too found your site from YHL, and I’m now a fan. You crack me up, girl. 😉


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