There’s been a few spaces we haven’t even touched since moving in to our fixer upper. One of those spaces is this awesome bonus room space above our garage which was undoubtedly the nastiest room of the house when we first moved in. The space was filled with badly stained (and stinky) carpet, holes in the walls, broken windows, dust and overall dinginess. We didn’t really need the space for anything right away, so it just sat there and became storage for the first few years we have lived here.Read More
Our laundry room is one area of the house that I have not shared a whole lot about during our renovation. As you can expect, this area really wasn't my top priority as far as decorating and I've just now gotten around to really focusing on the decor in the past few months. I didn't realize just how much we had transformed this room until I looked at the "before" photo from when we first bought the house below!
A really bad light 80's light fixture was just the beginning of the problems in this room. The original hardwoods were ruined due to water damage over the years from the nearby half bathroom and horribly faulty plumbing. The entire door was also rotting and practically crumbling apart every time you tried to open it. There was also horrible popcorn ceiling in this room too. During our renovation, we put down new slate-look ceramic tile floors (from Louisville Tile) and replaced the damaged door with a large sliding glass door system. Since we had to cut into the drywall in much of this room when we re-plumbed the house, we were able to just re-drywall the ceiling to smooth it out.
This room gets such great natural light from the wall of windows that fresh paint, drywall, and new floors make the biggest difference. This room is a multi-use space, as it's also a mudroom and the entrance we use most to enter and exit the house so I tried to keep it as open as possible while still making it functional and cozy. The laundry area is the focus of the room and the first area we started to dive in on. I wanted to create a focal wall with some fun printed wallpaper and I fell in love with this gingham print from Magnolia.
I also knew I wanted a laundry counter and was super inspired by this tutorial from Vintage Revivals. I loved the waterfall countertop look done with the simple lightly stained wood. My husband was able to create a very similar version, with a few adjustments for our space. We also added some metal trim on all the edges (alluminum pieces from Lowe's that I just spray-painted gold- both are linked above). My husband built matching shelves with the same wood and simple metal brackets from Lowe's which we also spray-painted gold (also linked above).
Another area of this room is the sitting area near the doorway. Since this is also a mudroom, a place to hang keys, purses, and take your shoes on and off is very important. I kept messing with this area because I couldn't get the arrangement and mix of colors and patterns just right, but I'm finally happy with it. I love the addition of a curtain on one side of the sliding glass door just to soften it a bit and add some color (rod is from Target; curtains from Homegoods). I also had painted this right side wall with chalkboard paint last year and I love the contrast it adds to the room. Most of the items in here are from Homegoods or vintage/thrifted and I've linked lost of similar or identical options above.
Styling my laundry counter was one of my favorite parts of this project. I knew I wanted as much as possible displayed in glass jars but I also founds some other fun accessories that I wanted to incorporate. The vintage floral painting was a thrift store find that kind of set the color scheme for the entire space. All the jars are from Target and I just spray-painted the lids gold using the same gold spray paint I linked above. I'm embarrassed to admit it, but I purposefully picked my detergents and cleaning products based on what would match and looks best in the jars. Anything that wasn't as attractive to have sitting out, I hid inside the crates or tubs!
It is also very important for me to have some kind of organizational center near my entrway where I can put mail and have a calendar. I found this weekly dry/erase calendar at Homegoods and it really helps me (and mostly my husband) stay organized with our schedule each week. I had this triple hanging wire basket at our old house near the entryway too and it's perfect for mail, magazines, and small items (I spray painted it gold for this room). Finally I added a little pop of color with a hanging plant and one of my favorite free plant printables from Magnolia (find it here) in a brass frame (frame linked above).
I'm so pleased to have one more room complete in our house and this space is such a cheerful sight to walk into everyday! The only other project I'm considering in here is switching out the flushmount for a small modern brass, beaded, or wicker chandelier. I've tried to link just about everything that I could from this room, but if you have any questions about anything I didn't mention, just ask!
For our little family, 2016 has been an exciting year full of change and new projects. It seems as if the majority of our year was focused around our home renovation, beginning the very first week of January when we first stepped foot into our now home. We weren't even seriously looking to move when we happened upon the listing (thanks to Alex's dad) and decided to take a look at this house on Main Street in Versailles with no definite plans in mind. We were overwhelmed while inside the house and initially decided it was way too big of a project for us right now. But as soon as we left, I couldn't stop thinking about the possibilities and both of us decided to take the plunge and make an offer.
Without a doubt the most stressful part of the entire process was in the coming months, preparing our first home to go on the market. The entire process was so emotional for me- that home was my pride and joy, as I purchased it right after graduating from college and poured years of hard work into it. I didn't have hardly any money to do improvements on that house, so we did everything on our own, on a serious budget. We weren't always able to make things perfect or have high-end finishes but it was a wonderful home to us for over 5 years.
Renovations on the new house started in March, just as our old house went up on the market. Having to show a house while you're still living in it is no fun, especially with two giant dogs. Besides having to have the house perfectly clean (and I am a serious perfectionist about this), I also had to take the dogs with me anytime we had a showing scheduled. There were some days when we had back-to-back showings from morning till night, and I feel as if all of March was spent in my car with Dixie and Hank just driving around aimlessly trying to pass the time.
Adding to the stress was the fact that we had purchased the new house before selling our old house. When our old house didn't sell in the first week, I started to panic. I know it's completely unreasonable to expect that quick of a sale, but we needed the profits from that sale to help pay for the renovation. I'm not one who likes to take risks like this, but after many tears and prayers, two weeks later, God brought us the perfect family and our closing was scheduled for late May.
Our renovation lasted about 90 days and during May I spent just about every day at the house moving boxes in and finalizing details of the renovation. As with most renovations of this nature, we ran into some unexpected projects and went over our estimated timeline by a few weeks. We moved in with a few renovation projects still finishing up and lived amongst the dust, piles of garbage, and constant stream of workers in and out, for two weeks.
Summer was spent settling in, beginning to decorate, and placing all our furniture around the house. The dogs settled in easily (especially after all the renovation workers were gone!) and they just love their giant new yard. I still feel like I have so far to go, but the walls are a little less bare and I actually have some curtains hung (in some rooms). I know I will never truly be finished with the house, but that is part of the fun. I like always having a project and endless rooms to redecorate and rearrange.
Photo by Sarah E Dunn Photo + Design
From fall through the end of the year we hosted many parties, gatherings, dinners, and endless tours at the house and even Thanksgiving dinner for both our families. My seasonal decorating was taken to a new level with a house that was double in size to our old one and a giant front porch to deck out! We also shot our autumn lookbook around our new home and I will treasure having all the beautiful shots by Sarah of this first year in our home. One of the highlights of the year was our anniversary trip to the Magnolia Silobration. It was a dream come true for me to see all things Fixer Upper in person, especially after just completing our own renovation.
all photos by Sarah E Dunn Photo + Design
Through this process I recieved so many requests about offering decorating and design services. I had been planning in the back of my mind to eventually add these services but decided to jump right in and try them for the holidays. The response I received was amazing and I can't thank all my clients enough for allowing me to work on your homes. I was fully booked for my first season of holiday decorating and already have several follow-up appointments to start out the new year. My husband and I loved the entire renovation process and are hoping to begin buying and flipping more homes and properties in 2017 (hopefully just not anymore that we are living in... for now). I can't wait to focus on this portion of my business more in the coming year and continue to grow the brand of Miss Molly Vintage.
It's amazing how much we have accomplished when I sit back and reflect on the entire year. Every day we pinch ourselves because we have truly created our dream home and we can't imagine living anywhere else now. Thank you for following along on this journey with us and I hope to share many more projects and renovations in the coming year!
Last week I showed you a little sneak peek of our entryway and a furniture painting makeover I had recently completed for the space. I have never had a true entryway before to decorate, and I really love having this separate little space, both upstairs and downstairs. In my first blog post about our entryway, I discussed all my ideas and design plans for this space including an equestrian-themed gallery wall and painting all the trim dark. To get a better idea of what we started with in this space, take a look at the before photos below:
One big change that we made was closing off this super low doorway you see straight ahead on the lower level. We think this doorway was probably added on as it was not standard size and just looked strange. This doorway went into what is now our butler's pantry, but closing it off made this space feel more like a true entryway.
The other major changes we made were removing all the wallpaper and painting all the walls and trim both upstairs and downstairs.
These old light fixtures also needed to go in order to make the space feel less dated.
Removing the old wallpaper and painting the walls, as well as painting the trim for contrast made the biggest difference in modernizing this space. The wall color is a classic white, "Pure White" by Sherwin Williams, which I used all over my house. The dark trim is painted with Sherwin William's "Iron Ore," which is a perfect dark charcoal that's just a shade lighter than black.
I also could not wait to change out those old 80's light fixtures and I really wanted the look of a modern geometric semi-open flush-mount. I was shocked to find several options at Lowe's that were exactly what I wanted (I chose this smaller one for upstairs and this slightly larger one for downstairs). If you haven't checked out the lighting options at Lowe's lately, they recently revamped all their lighting options this spring and they have so many new styles that are really on trend and super affordable.
I still need to add some more furniture/wall decor downstairs but I've started with this console, large vintage mirror, and antique rug.
My favorite part of the entryway is the equestrian-themed gallery wall I created. I have such a large collection of vintage horse prints and I wanted to make a statement wall by clustering them all together. It's the perfect focal point for this entryway and really sets the tone for the overall style of the entire house.
This area both upstairs and downstairs has original wood floors. They are in rough shape but I love them anyways! I think they add so much character to the space and I would rather have old beat-up floors than cheap-looking new wood floors any day!
All of my horse pictures came from garage sales or peddler malls. I've been collecting them for several years and most of them cost $10 or less! I like how they all have slightly different styles, textures, and frames. I think the most interesting gallery walls look truly collected and less planned.
I still need to add a couple more furniture pieces (maybe a bench or shelf downstairs and a small table or plant stand on the upstairs landing), but I'm happy with the progress we have made so far. It is amazing how much a little paint can change a space and make it feel brand new. When we first bought the house this was a space that felt kind of dingy and dark, but now it is becoming a more welcoming and modern entryway.
The next room up on Our Fixer Upper before/after reveal was actually a relatively easy project, which is hard to come by in this 100 year old house. Our living room came together very easily and most of our furniture and decor from our old living room worked just perfectly in this space. It is the perfect size and feels so cozy and I am loving having these built-ins to style and decorate. You can take a look at what our living room looked like before renovation below:
It's hard to tell from photos but the biggest change that needed to happen in this room was the trim and built-in paint. They were an off-white but the combination of that color and the age of the paint was making the built-ins look old and dirty. We were thrilled to have original hardwood floors in this room so this is one of the few spaces we did not have to worry about flooring for.
I ended up removing both of the doors on the separate entryways into this room just to open up the space a bit more. I don't think we will ever have the need to have this room completely closed off and they just made arranging the furniture a little more difficult.
We also removed the old brass fireplace insert that was dating the entire fireplace. For now I just have a simple fireplace screen but I am contemplating maybe painting the brick in the future.
All the built-ins and trim were painted bright white and it really made SUCH a big difference in the space. Now the room feels much cleaner and more modern. I love all the detail and moldings on these original built-ins too! Eventually I would like the paint the back of the shelves a dark gray just for extra contrast but for now they are fine all white.
The other big change in this room was the light fixture. There was an 80's style flush-mount here before and I was determined to find a more stylish flush-mount light that fit with the style of my decor. I was thrilled to find this light fixture on Wayfair that has the look of a rustic wood-bead chandelier but in the flush-mount style. It was even under $100 and it looks even better in person- super high quality and a good size too. I think it is just the perfect light fixture for this space!
Besides those two elements, the rest of the room just came together so easily. I was worried about our couches/coffee table being too tight in the space but they ended up fitting perfectly and we even have room to add a chair in the corner. I put a navy leather wingback there for the time being but would like to get something more neutral and petite, maybe with some pattern. We had the television mounted above the fireplace by a local company, TDO Home Entertainment, who did an amazing job and was able to hide ALL the cords (one of my pet peeves). We got lucky that the size of television we already had just fit perfectly into the molding that was already above the fireplace.
I still have a few more pictures to hang on the walls but overall this room is pretty complete and feels like home! Can you imagine the decorating that will be done on all these shelves come Fall and Christmas?! I can't wait!
Ceiling light fixture: Jeremiah Berkshire 3 Light Flush Mount via Wayfair
Trim + built-in paint color: "Pure White" by Sherwin Williams
Wall paint color: Sherwin Williams "Useful Gray"
Now that we are settling in to our new home, I can finally share with you all some "after" photos of the rooms. I hate calling them "after" photos because I still feel like I have so much work to do in every space, but since all the major construction is done it will give you a good idea of how much every room has transformed! First up is our master bedroom. I am loving our bedroom so far, it is SO big (especially compared to our old bedroom). I don't know what to do with all this space, but that is my favorite problem to have (it just means I will have plenty of room for all my garage sale finds this summer)! The biggest change in this space was definitely the flooring. When we purchased the house there were no floors in this room (just sub-floors). We were required to put something down on the floors in order to make the house "livable" and get our appraisal pushed through before closing- which is why you see cheap commercial carpeting on the "before" photos of the room. Here's the room before we began any renovations:
And here's what the room looks like now!:
We originally wanted to do reclaimed hardwoods in here but after the foundation debacle in the kitchen, we realized we could make up quite a bit of that money by going with pre-engineered hardwoods. I think we definitely made the right choice and it really updates the room and makes it feel brand new. We both lean towards dark hardwoods and decided to go with these Dark Hickory floors (from Lumber Liquidators). These also continue out into the hallway and into my dressing room as well.
The other major change: paint! I continue to be amazed at how much paint can transform a space, especially when you are working with older homes. We had all the doors and trim sprayed bright white ("Pure White" by Sherwin Williams) in this room and then the walls and inside of the closets were painted this navy shade "Charcoal Blue" from Sherwin Williams. I can't get enough dark paint lately and I think it is the perfect blend of traditional and modern.
Other than that, all the furniture and most of the decor are things we already had. I'm not in love with any of my mismatched bedroom furniture but it will do for now, and we are wanting to upgrade to a King size bed anyway in the future.
My go-to window treatments are these super simple bamboo shades- they look good even without curtains and I think they are perfect for this space. I may add curtains later but for now these add a little texture and privacy, and they are only $12 each at Big Lots! I have been stocking up on them for every room! We also got a new ceiling fan that was a little bit of a splurge considering all other ceiling fans I have ever bought have been around $50! This is something we use every night, and I figured it was worth spending a little more money on. So far we have been very impressed with how much air it moves and how expensive the finishes on it look, especially the blades! I've still got some pictures to hang, a few finishing touches, and hopefully may add an area rug and some more furniture in the future (definitely on the lookout for an ottoman or small coffee table for in front of the couch), but for now we are loving our spacious new master bedroom (and so are the dogs)! Later this week I'll be showing you the before and after of our master bath which looks COMPLETELY different than when we first started!
1. Dressing room chandelier: Target | 2. Living room ceiling light: Wayfair | 3. Guest bedroom ceiling light: Lowe's
My main focus this week has been finalizing and ordering all our new lighting for the house. It is kind of overwhelming to pick out SO many light fixtures all at once, but thankfully I have been able to shop online and slowly narrow down my favorites over the past few months. I tried to stay within a reasonable budget for all of our lighting. I really can't stand to pay much more than $100 for most lights although I did make an exception on a few statement pieces that I felt were important. I made up for it by finding a few super cheap thrifted vintage lights (one being for our guest bath for $1!) that I can spruce up with new bulbs and paint. Above are the lights I picked out for our living room, guest bedroom, and my dressing room. For the living room I needed a flush-mount ceiling light that didn't hang down super far. Flush mounts are definitely the hardest style to find fashionable light options in, so I was thrilled to find this one with the beaded chandelier look. This will definitely fit perfectly with the more rustic, eclectic style of our living room. For the guest bedroom upstairs, I also needed a flush mount because the ceilings are too low in there for a ceiling fan. I fell in love with these super minimal, industrial flush mount lights from Lowe's and am going to be using them in a couple of other rooms too. The light fixture I'm probably most excited about is this fun midcentury-inspired chandelier for my dressing room. This is really going to be the focal point of the room and I think the brass will look so gorgeous with the pale pink walls.
I also love all the kitchen lighting, especially my globe pendants! I wanted to continue the brass accents that are on our cabinet hardware into our lighting. I love the modern, simple look of globe pendants and fell in love with these milkglass ones from West Elm (one of my fixture splurges, but still pretty reasonable!). I am also doing three sconces above the large open shelving wall in the kitchen. This entire wall will have a gorgeous subway tile backsplash and these black and brass sconces (from Target!) at the top. We also have tons of can lights throughout the kitchen so I really didn't need to order any other lighting. In the mudroom off the kitchen I went with this same simple flush mount from Lowe's.
1. Entryway light: Lowe's | 2. Front entryway light (top of stairs): Lowe's | Top of back stairs light: Wayfair
I wanted to really modernize the entryway that looked super dated before with old wallpaper and 80's light fixtures. I think these open faceted light fixtures are a perfect blend of my favorite styles but also formal enough for an entryway. I chose a slightly larger one for the entry right in front of the front door and a smaller version for the top of the front stairs. I needed a super simple and small fixture for the top of the back staircase so I went with this schoolhouse inspired light (a steal at $35!).
Front Porch Lanterns: Lowe's | Side Porch Entry Ceiling Light: Lowe's | Back Deck Light: Lowe's | Side Porch Ceiling Fan: Lowe's
We don't have anything left in our budget to deal with the outside of the house at the moment, but we can add a tiny bit of curb appeal by switching out some of the outdoor lighting. The lanterns that were on the front porch (on each side of the front door) hung way too low and were super outdated. I am updating them with these larger, classic black lanterns from Lowe's. I kept it simple with the lights for our side entryway and back deck, but just having a new, clean light fixtures will make a huge difference. We also had a ceiling fan on our side porch (but it was barely hanging on and quite sad looking!) that we will be replacing with a newer, slightly larger fan that has a light on it too. This fan is a great outdoor, budget-friendly option that is classic but with modern finishes.
1. Master bedroom ceiling fan: Lowe's | 2. Master bathroom vanity sconces: Bulbs.com | 3. Master bathroom ceiling light: Lowe's
In the master bedroom I splurged a bit on a more expensive, larger fan (because my husband is serious about sleeping with all fans on high and the thermostat on 65, I know- freezing!). I liked the modern look of this fan and loved the finish on the blades. It also has an oil rubbed bronze finish on the metal which matches all our fixtures in the master bath. For the master bathroom we will have these industrial-look sconces (super affordable!) on each side of the mirror above the sink. I also went with my favorite Lowe's flush mount light for the ceiling in the center of the room.
Our electrician is coming this Thursday to begin hanging most of our new lights! Did I mention we are moving in THIS weekend?! We are trying to complete the bulk of the renovation this week (hopefully!). Stay tuned for lots of new updates to come this week!
We have (some) flooring, we have cabinets, there's no holes in the walls, we're so close to having a real kitchen! I'm so relieved that all the plumbing and foundation repair is behind us and this space is finally starting to look like a room again. Here's what we started with in the kitchen:
After demo, we basically re-plumbed the entire house and also repoured the foundation in the back half of the kitchen. At one point the whole back of the kitchen was a pile of dirt! Now everything is slowly being put back together. New drywall has been put up to cover all the holes from the plumbing and smooth out any rough patches. This week they will be painting all the trim and walls too to be bright white.
They have begun laying our slate tile which will fill the entire room and flow into the hall and mudroom as well.
It's still very dusty from all the drywall but you can tell how much this flooring is going to transform the room!
We also now have cabinets! The day we got our cabinets installed was like Christmas morning to me (and this week when our appliances come, it will be like Christmas morning part two!). We are still waiting on counter-tops too which will be installed next week. I love the gray color of the cabinets against the slate floor and the pops of brass with the knobs.
Below you can see our stainless farmhouse sink that has been installed too. All of our appliances are also stainless- the dishwasher will be in the open space to the left and the range and vent hood will be in the big open space to the right.
There is also a custom enclosure for our fridge (far left). I'm really excited about this because it's a little pet peeve of mine when fridges stick out way past the cabinets. There will be a white subway tile backsplash (with dark grout) over any part of the back wall that isn't covered.
The cabinet to the far right by the window is a spice rack pull-out! This will be perfect to have right by the range and oven, and I may also do some mini floating shelves on the wall above it (to the right of the range) for olive oils, vinegars, cooking sprays, and other necessities we will need nearby.
Below you can see a close up of the cabinet color/finish and the brass cup handles. This cabinet is a double trashcan pull-out.
Thanks to our friend TJ at Kitchen Concepts for working with us on these custom cabinets and giving us just what we wanted! I highly recommend Kitchen Concepts for any kitchen projects or custom cabinetry that you need, they really go above and beyond to make the experience as easy as possible and are super organized (which I love!). I can't wait to see how it looks with the whole wall filled once the appliances are in. If you want to catch up on our full design plans for the kitchen check out our post here.
Now onto another fun space: the butler's pantry, which looks just a little different since the last time I shared about it.
It is amazing how much difference a little drywall can make! This room has beautiful high ceilings but they were super outdated looking with popcorn-like texture. Now they are completely smooth and will be getting a fresh coat of paint this week (along with all the trim and walls!)
Another big change that you will notice is that the awkward low doorway is gone! Now it is just a regular wall, and it makes the room feel even bigger!
Next up for this room is flooring! We chose a super unique tile that looks like white-washed brick (see below). I think this will be perfect for the French industrial farmhouse vibe of the kitchen and butler's pantry. I chose a dark gray wall color to contrast since the floors and trim will both be so light. If you want to read more about our plans for this room check out our post here.
I'm already getting anxious to decorate all these spaces but I have to be patient! I'm looking for a fun bright but distressed looking rug for this room and I hope to also paint those old glass french doors (into the mudroom) an unexpected pop of color. I've made a short summary of some of our sources used in the kitchen and pantry below. Keep checking back for more updates as we get closer to move-in day!