When people come into my home for the first time, I usually hear “your home is adorable!” or “I love how you decorate!”. To which I reply, “thank you! It’s what I like to call garage sale chic.”
Because that is the best name for my home’s decor. I am not trying to be trendy, or “that” blogger who can turn trash to treasure; we don’t have a lot of money to use on decorating our home, it is out of necessity, not fun.
So I make up for the fact that we live among garage sale crap by making what we do have look prettier, and to be honest, it is fun to reinvent your home without spending a lot of money.
But it’s even more fun to buy new shit.
Sew that on a pillow.
I have written about our home in 2011 and 2013 but it had been a solid five years since and our home looks completely different (most of that is a new paint color); so I thought it would be fun to write one of these posts again!
Until I wrote it and realized how much work it was, then realized why it had been a solid five years.
Our living room has evolved a bit over the past seven years since I started blogging.
I must have liked lots of fake plants back then.
And the color black.
By the way, if you’re new here, you need to know that my living room was once my dining room.
When it wasn’t.
I still very occasionally switch these two rooms for a couple of reasons:
-I like to keep my family on their toes
I must have also really liked dark colors as well but we have since painted this room Silver Strand by Sherwin Williams and it made the biggest and best difference. If you can’t afford to re-decorate your pad, paint it. It will make all the difference and it will make your old crap look new again.
The coffee table was a gift to me from my parents in the 90’s. You can read about its revival here. The yellow cabinet was given to me as a Christmas present when I was in 8th grade. To hold my records. I revived that piece as well here. The little white end table was from my grandma’s farmhouse, so original farmhouse chic at its finest. The couch was bought on clearance at a local furniture store many years ago.
Note- never buy a leather couch when you have kids. Even on clearance.
I bought that mirror at Home Goods a good seven-plus years ago. It has a chip on the frame, so it was marked on clearance for 12 dollars which is INSANE for that size mirror. I took a black Sharpie marker and colored in the chip. I found one on Amazon that’s very similar but it is much more expensive.
For years we had sheer white curtains on that big window that I found insanely inexpensive at my local Wal-Mart. They were adorable but we would never sit in this room at night because of the lack of privacy. I went looking online for some panels and I stumbled upon these beautiful curtains that are light blocking and keep the heat in AND they are really cute to look at. $36.99 for the pair and they easily cover this window.
PS- I first wrote the above in November of 2017 but got busy with the holidays so you know what that means?
I changed it.
WHY THE HELL NOT?
See that amazing lamp to the left (your right) of the couch? Facebook Marketplace for $15! It used to be in a Marriott hotel; pretty cool that my lamp has a past.
I hope it also doesn’t have bed bugs.
That blanket ladder I also bought on Facebook Marketplace as well. There is a woman in our community who is trying to raise money to adopt another child and she makes these to help support their cause.
Our dining room hasn’t really changed too much in seven years other than paint color.
Other than being in the other room.
Color makes all the difference.
We got that cool wooden box this summer at an antique store some friends own. It was handmade by a local man and was a steal for $15 because I could never make something like this for that amount of money. I will have fun with each season putting something in there. I am hoping to store scads and scads of Cadbury Eggs in there during Easter.
That ANTIQUES sign was the deal of the century and one of my favorite items in our home. I found it at our church rummage sale many moons ago for $10. It was from a local antique store that had closed, so it too had a history, which I love. I almost ran through the parking lot to take it to my car.
Ten dollars was (and still is) a steal and even though the money went to my church, I wasn’t gonna offer more. I NEVER SAID I WAS A GOOD CHRISTIAN.
By the way, the dresser all those frames are on is supposed to be in a bedroom but don’t tell that to my dresser. It has an identity crisis that works very well for our family. Instead of holding socks and panties, it holds my Dollar Tree holiday china, AA batteries, and candles. YOU DO YOU.
So I have a corner.
In my living room.
When it isn’t my dining room.
This corner has always felt a little off to me. Nothing ever looked right in this corner even when it was a dining room. Or a living room.
Then I decided that I would make this corner into my little office.
I loved this corner but I didn’t like how when I would sit here early in the morning (think dark out) or late evening (think darker out), that anyone could see me sitting at the computer toiling away.
So now that I have those curtains, it makes my writing life so much easier. Too bright on the screen? Close the drapes! Too cold sitting by the window? Close the drapes! Afraid that people will see how much you work and that you still have holes in your jeans? Close the drapes!
The desk was a hand-me-down from Rebecca years ago and it has been through lots of changes. Head here to read about that.
The lamp was inspired by my friend Melanie when I visited her home last fall. I fell in love with her lamp and told her I passed one up at my local Goodwill and regretted it ever since. I found mine on Amazon and it has been worth every penny. Plus, it’s really cool.
I feel like our family room has seen more change than our other rooms even though we don’t have many options in this room.
Case in point:
I have to say, I did like having my desk (aka- the old kitchen table I rehabbed here) in the family room for many reasons but the biggest reason I didn’t like it in here was this: the television is in this room. At the time, Ella was a pre-schooler, which meant she was home more than she was away. So writing in here while DANIEL TIGER WAS ON FULL BLAST wasn’t always conducive to getting great works from me (not that there have ever been great works from me).
Isn’t that so much better?
Yeah, don’t get used to it.
Long story long, I had a mural company reach out to me back in the fall asking if I wanted to write about their company if they shared with me a mural of my choice. I was all HELL YEAH because that meant one less wall to paint. Not at all about being creative or my artistic integrity. As I age, the less I have to do to make my home look like it isn’t on an episode of Live PD, the better.
So my husband and I measured, sent in the measurements, and ordered our mural (a brick wall). When my husband and dad went to put it up (because I have no business being around wallpaper. Or wallpaper paste. And also, I was doing laundry at my mom’s because our washer was broken for six weeks plus at that point. Did I say it was under warranty? Maybe this should have been a separate blog post), it didn’t fit.
By a lot.
It was most likely my fault because I also have no business being around numbers. So the project is on the back burner. But we need to paint this room soon because gashes in the wall, dents where my husband tripped and hit his big old noggin on the wall, so we aren’t putting anything on this wall.
I feel like I could have made that paragraph into a blog post as well.
I still may.
I actually like this family room from 2013 because it looks so cozy. I did change it up with spray paint back in the fall of 2013 and it ended up looking like this:
It was quite lovely.
Until it wasn’t.
This post is making me realize I had LOTS more energy back then. Now, I can barely get my ass off the couch long enough to hang a picture.
This is what this room looks like now:
As you can see, this was from the fall but with the exception of the fall decor, this room hasn’t changed much since the taking of this picture. The red couch said sayonara and is probably clogging up a landfill as I write this. Please don’t give me a hard time, no one else wanted it either.
We got this couch, a sectional from Ikea, on Facebook Marketplace. Safer than Craigslist, because you can actually see the profile of the person you are buying from and this baby (over 500 in store) was only 125 to us. We probably won’t have it forever because we beat the hell out of couches, which is why we don’t pay a lot for them.
Our kitchen has seen a drastic change since 2011.
Why do we have a globe in the kitchen?
We first painted the kitchen chairs (we found on the side of the road) off-white in the spring of 2012:
But then in the late fall of 2012, we decided that our kitchen was still too dark. So we painted our entire kitchen, took down the valances from the side windows and got new curtains for the patio door.
We painted the majority of the kitchen Revere Pewter by Benjamin Moore (go here for my tips on getting brand name paint for SO much less), and decided on a focal color for the sliding door wall. I had fallen in love with a (now-defunct) blogger’s dining room color: Offbeat Green by Sherwin Williams (again, didn’t use Sherwin Williams so head to the link for that tip that saved us lots of money).
I decided on the focal wall for two reasons:
1- as much as I loved that green, I thought having an entire kitchen painted in it would be too much green
2- I thought that painting it on the wall that has the biggest window would bring the outside in, so to speak.
I will never change this as long as I live in this house and if I move, I am painting a wall Offbeat Green in my next home.
Revere Pewter is one of the best neutral colors out there. We have two bathrooms painted in it as well. Not too drab but neutral enough that you could re-invent your room with accent colors without having to re-paint the entire room.
Above is our kitchen today, almost exactly the same with the addition of my little green cart that we got from our neighbors for free. You can read about rehabbing that piece here. I love that the mint green fits right in with the other colors. Don’t be afraid to go out of the box a little when painting or rehabbing old pieces. Life is too short to have boring furniture and you can quote me on that.
We loved that green so much, we painted another focal wall that faces directly across from the kitchen wall in our landing. That landing had been UGGGGLY for many years when we finally got the right combination. The birch branches in the container are from our now-dead birch tree from the front yard, sniff sniff.
That amazing wood crate (that has a Chicago address on the front of it), is from a friend of ours who has a furniture rehabbing business. She had an attic full of goodies that she was trying to get rid of and we were happy to help her. She wouldn’t take our money, so we took her and her husband out to dinner instead and I got cheese fries out of the deal. I got that amazing window from my friend Jen when she was getting rid of “junk” from her home last year. The mirror I got at Marshall’s the spring of 2006 and I only remember that because it was right before our wedding.
Don’t believe that landing was ever ugly?
I was hanging preschool art projects on this wall. WHAT THE ACTUAL HELL. But wait, it’s getting better (and by better, I mean worse):
Aww look, back when I didn’t have an Ipad and I read books before bed. #GoodTimes.
By the way, that was the only picture I took of our bedroom in 2011, so it must have been VERY impressive back then.
Don’t let my husband hear me say this (because I am never wrong, duh) but I miss the carpet in the bedrooms. SHHHH DO NOT TELL HIM and if you think he will read this post, most likely he won’t because he is a “skimmer”, so I buried this in the middle.
I wanted laminate in our bedrooms for years, begged and pleaded, said I would do anything to get them in there. We finally got them in 2014 and at first, I loved them! So easy to clean! So cool to look at!
But I miss the coziness that carpets give to a bedroom and it was much warmer when we had carpet. So really, we should have just replaced the hideous (and it was hideous) carpet instead of getting laminate. But the resale value will be better and now I get to Swiffer under the bed. Oh boy.
The bed frame was my parents’ old bed that they didn’t use any more. The nightstand is the old brown one but we “repainted” it. I am not going into specifics but you can read the gory details here.
So that’s my home. With the exception of the girls’ rooms (think messy chic), the bathrooms (exactly the same, and do you really need to see the toothpaste stains), and the basement (ditto with the exception of toothpaste stains).
Oh, look who’s back?? HI HUBBY! The entire post was about how much I love our laminate floors in the bedroom.
Nothing to see here.