The entryway project is well underway with a new door, light, and hardware. I knew when designing this renovation that I wanted to bring more light into the room. A new door seemed to be the perfect solution to this problem. The old door only had a small window at the top of the door letting in a small amount of light. I imagined a door with solid window panes to allow as much light in as possible.
I found this door at a barn sale for $20 and got super lucky that it was exactly the right size to fit the doorway. I did have to buy a new handle because the old one didn’t come with a key. A new doorknob kit runs around $50.
The original plan was to paint the door black to contrast that dark color with the white shiplap on the opposite walls. With the new door up it’s obvious now that the design plans need to change. The main goal was to allow more light to shine in and painting it black will only take away from this goal. So the new plan is to paint it all white. I’ll still go with the black tile and black metal railing on the staircase for contrast.
Another change of plans is to add wainscoting to the wall underneath the wallpaper. I think It will add so much more character to a pretty bland wall while adding a bit of sophistication as well. Plus it’s pretty inexpensive to do! You’ll have to tune in next week to see how that tuned out!
What do you do when you fall in love with beautiful brass light fixtures but don’t want to pay an electrition to hardwire them in? You try out Nesting With Grace’s famous light trick!
I’ve been following Nesting with Grace for years and she never ceases to amaze me with all her beautiful hacks and styling. This one is just pure genius!
The mechanics behind this trick are basically to gorilla glue the back of a battery-operated puck light to a PVC part that then screws into the light fixture. You can read her post here.
Seems like a pretty straight forward DIY… I’m going to give it a go. My first stop was the Home Depot to pick up the 3/4″ diameter PVC adapter and the gorilla glue (everything will be linked at the bottom). Fortunately, I already have a pack of Puck lights from a project I did a while back on my daughter’s closet so I didn’t need to pick any of those up. But they are reasonably inexpensive from Amazon if you need to buy them. Oh and don’t forget the batteries! I like to use rechargeable batteries, but they can be pricey. If not, regular batteries it is. By the way, Home Depot will recycle dead batteries if you bring them in.
The good thing about puck lights is that the back detaches from the actual light so you’re only gluing the PVC adapter to the back itself. This will make it easy to change the batteries when needed! To start, I glued a small ring around the PVC adapter and attached it to the back of the puck light. The drying time was only 20 minutes! But keep in mind, full cure time is 24 hours.
After the glue has dried, reassemble the puck light by attaching the front and back together. Then twist the PVC part of the contraption into your light fixture where the light bulb would go. Then, simply push down on the puck light and watch the magic happen! Let there be light! My puck light pack came with a remote so I don’t even have to manually turn them on and off while I’m laying in bed!
All in all, I would say this project was a huge success! What a genius solution to hardwiring issues. I Would 100% do this project again.
It’s finally Week Two with kids storage solutions, and today we’re attacking the toy issues in my daughter’s room. Her room is not that big, so we need to come up with a few tricks to utilize the space we have. She also has a lot of toys, so finding appropriate storage is a big must to help her stay organized.
The girl has a lot of doll accessories, so I’m afraid of bringing in too many things to organize because I don’t want to overcrowd her room and leave the room feeling cramped. I want her to have room to play in addition to convenient storage. I’ll use a few large baskets for starters, and then some bins that go under her bed to store dolls and their accessories.
I think sometimes I forget that the point of her room is to keep all of the things organized AND for her to play! It’s easy to get caught up in the design without looking at things through a practical lense. I want her to be able to easily access her belongings while happily playing in her space.
My biggest goal whenever trying to organize an area for my children is that I want them to be set up for future success. Their belongings should be easy to find when they need them, but more importantly, I want to teach them how important it is to take care of the stuff that they have. Learning to care for your room as a child is so important because you’re basically learning to strengthen that “responsibility” habit muscle. The more you do it the more of a habit it becomes. And not only does it translate into them learning to tidy up but teaches them to do the things that they don’t want to do… Like, writing that term paper when they’re older, studying for a big test, or completing a work project on time. Any Charles Duhigg fans? Love his book The Power of Habit: Why we do What we do in Life and in Business. Seriously, a life changing read!
To start this project I gave her room a thorough cleaning… with her help of course! We cleaned under the bed (which seems to be a universal hiding spot by the way) and in her closet. We packed up everything on her shelf and in her closet so we could give everything a fresh coat of paint and separate her belongings into more organized piles. This way we could get rid of the things she has either grown out of or no longer plays with.
After we had everything cleaned out, we gave the furniture that needed it a fresh coat of paint and let everything dry before putting all her belongings back.
Total side note… We absolutely love her Beddys bedding! It’s the simplest concept of bedding where you essentially just zip it up every morning to a perfectly made bed! It’s amazing! I have a blog post about it here. Plus if you use THEFARMHOUSELIFE15 at check out you can get 15% off!
Does anyone else love a good Bed and breakfast? I love the antique furniture, the beautiful linens, and the ambiance of a cozy fireplace that most B&Bs have. It’s all so inviting that it makes you want to come and stay and never leave! I want the guests in my home to feel the same way.
I’ve picked up a few things from my stays at a bed and breakfast that I’ve incorporated in my own guest room. One thing I do to make my space feel more welcoming is appeal to all the senses. I try and use them as a guide when preparing my guest room for company.
Sight is the most obvious of the senses that we want to use to invite our guests in and make them feel welcome. I believe that a beautifully styled room has the ability to bring about a feeling. In this case, I want my guests to feel cozy and relaxed. So for furniture, I went more on the warmer side with wood tones but added contrast with fluffy white bedding. I also have a Scandinavian printed wallpaper that gives a nod to history and adds to the antique vibe.
You want the smells in your guest room to pull people in and be relaxing. I like to diffuse lavender, which has a calming effect. Candles are a great option too. I like to leave a small tray with matches and a candle so if my guests feel like lighting a candle they can while they’re here. Sometimes I line dry the sheets and bedding so even their bedding smells as fresh as the outdoors. My only caution is that some guests are sensitive to smells so I don’t go overboard with perfume type sprays. A clean room will go along way, and opening windows always helps too!
Touch is an important part of making your guest room more welcoming! Make sure the bedding is freshly laundered and soft to the touch. Adding cozy throw blankets and pillows is another way to add in more texture to your space. Hanging bathrobes in the corner and fresh towels folded nearby is another way to use touch to engage your guests’ sense of touch.
I know adding taste to your guest room sounds funny, but it’s a nice touch to have yummy snacks on hand for your guests. You can have a basket in the corner with some packaged goodies or tuck in a nightstand just in case they get hungry at night. This gesture doesn’t go unseen. I never had anyone complain about a fresh plate of chocolate chips cookies to snack on when they arrive! Water bottles are another great item to tuck in your snack basket too.
Playing music is another great way to welcome your guests. Having an Alexa with prime music is great to have tucked in the corner. You can ask Alexa to play relaxing music and she’s all over it!
It’s also important to make sure that your room meets your guest’s needs from a practical perspective. For instance, nightstands are important so your guests have a place to put their books/phones/glasses on at night. I like to put the wifi passcode on a notecard in the nightstand drawer too. A small organizer with a nail clipper, band-aids, q tips, and a small bottle of ibuprofen is nice. A cellphone charger is also a great idea. A dim bedside lamp is very practical too. We have an armoire with a small tv hidden inside so our guests can watch tv in the evening if they prefer. Have a place to put their luggage on (like a bench) so their luggage isn’t on the floor.
Ok – I know I’m so late on the One room challenge stuff. I’m going to blame it on COVID. Working, homeschooling my kids, and managing a home renovation all were a bit too much at times and it put me way behind schedule. But as I always say, better late than never! I’m so excited to finally share our completed home office!
My favorite feature of our new home office has got to be the sliding barn door (Tutorial coming soon!) I also love the fact that we salvaged the desk from the barn… who knows how long it had been sitting in there! If you’ve been hanging out here for long you know that I love salvaged or thrifted items. They add such a sophisticated “lived in” vibe that only antiques can provide.
The bookshelves in our office are from Ikea. (ps – everything is linked at the bottom. Scroll down if you want to check it out.) After styling them, my husband was a little confused as to why there weren’t any “real” books on the bookshelf. As you can see, the books on the bookshelf are all antiques and are more for decor purposes. You see – we have boxes and boxes of our “real” books in the attic that we’ve both been dying to bring down. I told him not to worry and that I have a plan for all those books in our next project! We’re building a library nook! I wanted the shelves in the office to be available for office storage supplies. With such a small space I wanted to make sure there was plenty of storage without feeling too cramped. So I went with lots of baskets on the shelves.
I also wanted a cozy spot in the office to sit and read. The large armchair and leather pouf provide a great area to grab a cup of coffee, put your feet up, and read a great book – or work on your laptop. You’ll also notice a few spots around the office that are meant for inspiration and organization. I put up a pinboard as a visual for our up and coming projects and a whiteboard for day to day tasks.
Lastly, the wallpaper I chose has a creamy texture. It creates a nice backdrop to the fun statements on the wall like the bull skull and woven light!
Lately, I’ve been pulling more natural warmer tones into my home. Our house is large and feels kind of stark and cold. More natural linens and warm tans/beiges really help to add that cozy feeling. I’ve been in love with large clay pots I’ve seen at Pottery Barn that would complete the vibe I’ve been transitioning into. But at this time in my life, I just can’t drop that kind of cash on decor pieces. Then I saw my friend Bre from @brepurposed on the gram transform her lamp with just a few easy steps into this gorgeous clay-looking Pottery Barn /Restoration Hardware creation! I decided to give it a go – and I’m so glad I did! I’m so in love and can’t believe I actually made this! Below I’ll show you each step so you too can create gorgeous vases/ pitches/lamps.. really whatever your heart desires… for a fraction of the cost of what you’d pay for brand new! I’ll also have a video of my project from start to finish at the bottom.
To start, pick out your piece! This is where you can have fun… Really anything will work. Don’t worry if it’s too shiny and smooth. We’ll be adding texture to help give it that clay look! I chose two large jars/vases and a pitcher. I’ve had these jars for many years… Remember when Chevron pattern was all the rage? Well, I jumped on that bandwaggon and displayed these beauties proudly. They’ve since been stored in my attic just waiting to be used for the right DIY.
Thankfully, I had all of these supplies on hand. Plaster of Paris is what you use when you’re mixing up your own chalk paint recipe – and lord knows I mix up a lot of chalk paint so I had plenty of that on hand.
With your small brush, lightly spackle over your vase. It’s ok if it goes on thicker in some areas – after everything is dry, we’ll give it a good sand to get rid of anything loose. Keep going until your entire vase is covered and then let dry. Make sure to rinse your brush well because you’ll be using this size again in another step.
When your vase is dry – give it a light sand to get rid of all of the loose pieces of spackle. It’s ok if some spots of your vase are bare again.. it’ll only add texture and dimension if some areas are more raised than others.
Mix 1/2 cup of plaster of Paris and about 1/4 cup water together. It’s ok if it’s a little watery. Plaster of Paris thickens over time so you may have to add a little more water as you go or even start with a fresh batch to continue to have the right consistency. With your small brush, paint your vase with the plaster of Paris mixture until you have your desired texture and until it’s fully covered. Remember to work quickly or be prepared to make a new mixture because your plaster will harden in your dish. Let dry completely.
Choose a paint color. I used Glidden Off-White. It has a subtle beige that really adds a lot of warmth. Use your medium-sized brush and paint over your entire vase and let dry.
Mix dirt and water to create a thick mud mixture (not watery) and completely coat your vase. It’s ok to put it on thick. After it dries, take a paper towel and brush off any loose mud from your vase.
Lastly, grab a paper towel and dip back into your paint and sponge it on in small areas on your vase. This is so you can get your desired color and also to help capture a more multidimensional look.
That’s it guys! How cool was that?!
A few years back I remember being on a huge budget while renovating our small downstairs bathroom in our first home. We picked out some peel and stick tile and found an amazing product…vinyl tile grout! I didn’t even realize that was a thing! Well – the process was very easy and I remember all of our guests complimenting us on our new bathroom floor. They were astonished when I told them that It was peel and stick tile. We even had a few friends argue us and place their bare feet on the tile to see if it was cold like a ceramic or stone tile generally is. But low and behold – It was just a jazzy way to spice up cheap flooring. Fooled them
Fast forward 5 years when it was time to fix up the kid’s bath in our “new” old home (new to us but 300 years old) – I remembered that project we did years ago and wanted to do it again. But of course, I had to one-up myself by doing it in a herringbone pattern! Click here to check out that tutorial. Well – It was a challenge – but oh my did it turn out amazing! And I knew I wanted to grout it because it’s basically like the icing on the cake. It looks so finished!
Check out our project from start to finish below!
To start, put grout mix into a large container or just directly apply the grout onto your grout float (I guess that’s what the fancy name for the tool we’re using is called.)
Next, at a 45-degree angle – apply the grout to the floor creases and use a zig-zag motion to smear the grout deep into the cracks.
Only do a section at a time that you can manage to wash off the haze and then regrout in a 30-minute time frame. So I broke my bathroom into two areas. I applied the grout – Washed it off and then regrouted and then washed again before moving on to the other side.
When It’s time to wash off the haze (what’s sitting on the actual tile) use a bucket of cool water and a sponge. Wring all the water out of the sponge before wiping it off of the tile. Try not to get too much water on the tile. Keep redipping in the water and wring out the sponge – wiping until its completely off the tile.
TIP – press your finger behind the sponge and run it along each grout line to create a nice smooth line.
After at least 2 days – use a sealer along the grout lines to protect it from any water penetration. Just run the sealer up the grout lines and wipe any of the residue off of the tile itself before 15 minutes. This is so the sealer doesn’t leave anything behind.
In one of my most recent chats with a countertops guy (Yes, this was before the coronavirus outbreak when we could see people and have such conversations as countertops) we were discussing stone upkeep. He mentioned having to reseal stone countertops at least once a year. That one had me stumped because within the four years we have lived in our farmhouse we have yet to reseal our countertops. I’ll be totally honest, our stone countertops have lost all their sheen and are looking very dull. He said this was very dangerous because it leaves your stone open for stains! I then asked him what he thought was the best product on the market for countertop care – and he said hands down – It’s Granite Gold. He said it’s the only stuff that truly works and is the only product on the market he recommends. This amazing stuff is available on Amazon – so I went ahead and ordered the set. There’s the daily cleaner, a sealer, and a polish. I thought this was as good a time as any to get those countertops looking shiny and new. You know… just in time for the big Easter Din… on never mind. Just in time for staying at home.
The back of all three of the bottles says it’s safe for food prep surfaces, is non-toxic, non-acidic, pH balanced, biodigratable, and has no phosphates and ammonia. Well – sounds pretty good to me! The directions say to spray on cleaner and wipe dry with a paper towel or lint-free cloth. So that’s what I did.
Next, I started the process of sealing the countertops. The directions say to start with a clean countertop using the daily cleaner – done! Then to spray a 3-foot section and immediately wipe the stone clean with a lint-free cloth. It specifically says do not let the sealer dry on the countertop… it will cause hazing. I don’t know what that means – but it doesn’t sound good. lastly, it says to buff dry with a lint-free cloth… wait 20 minuted and do the whole thing again -2 – 3 times.
The last step says to polish – but not until 24 hours after you have sealed the countertops. This is because the sealer needs that amount of time to cure. After the 24 hours are up the directions say to spray the countertops with the daily cleaner and wipe clean with a paper towel or a lint-free cloth. Then lastly, simply spray the polish on the countertop and buff with a dry paper towel or lint-free cloth. Then to wipe dry with a paper towel or lint-free cloth to finish. I’m getting the feeling that maybe I should be using a lint-free cloth🤷🏻♀️. Probably a good investment I’d say. Just a guess.
Castile soap has saved me quite a bit of money over the years. I use it for just about everything in my farmhouse home. I started using it because I wanted to find easy and simple ways to start using more natural products in my home. It’s very affordable running under $5 a bottle – and get this… It’s concentrated too! A couple of teaspoons of Castile soap will get you far! I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been in a pinch and needed to do laundry but had run out of detergent, and castile soap to the rescue!
So If you’re looking for a way to introduce more natural products in your home without spending much money, this product is for you! I’ve written down my top 10 favorite ways to use castle soap in your home!
Mix 2 teaspoons of castile soap with water and some drops of your favorite essential oil mixed in a spray bottle makes for a fantastic all-purpose cleaner. You can use it on your counters in your bathroom and kitchen, your sinks, stovetops, even your toilets. It’s the wonder spray!
Mix 2-3 tablespoons of castile soap with 1/4 cup baking soda for a non-toxic shower scrub. Let it sit for 5-10 minutes and then scrub away. It works wonders!
A few drops of castile soap in your dishwater will do wonders on your sink of dishes! A little dab goes a long way!
I wouldn’t go around eating it – but a few drops on your wet toothbrush will clean your teeth without all the chemical ingredients.
If you’re a low-maintenance person, you’ll be happy to know that you can use castile soap as an all-in-one in the shower, both for your hair and your body.
Vegetable washes can be quite expensive! Did you know you can use Castile soap to help rinse fruit and vegetables from their dirt and pesticide residue? Just add 1 tablespoon of the hard working castile soap to 2 cups of water, and store the mixture in a squirt bottle right beside your kitchen sink.
Make a mixture with one part castile soap and three parts water to shampoo your dog. This mix comes in handy with our farm pup – boy does she get stinky!
I love the smell of my Castle Soap, I put in 3 Tablespoons castile soap mixed with water into my hand soap bottle as a replacement.
Run out of Laundry Detergent? No problem! Just squirt about 1 tablespoon of Castle Soap and a splash of vinegar as a rinse to give your clothes a gentler clean!
Mix 1/4 cup castile soap in a bucket with warm water and get to mopping!
Well – I hope you’ve enjoyed this post! My favorite place to get Castle Soap is at Grove! Check it out here to receive your free caddy and three-piece Mrs. Meyers set!
Or you can pick it up at Amazon here!
As you know – I’m currently in a blog series called bathroom refresh where I’m trying to update my bathroom on only a $100 budget. This is actually quite hard to do – so I’m trying to pull as many things from my house as possible to save the budget for statement items such as new light fixtures and pulls. Now – You might be confused because the title of my blog is called “How to update your bathroom fixtures with spray paint” but in my case, my light fixture and pulls are so outdated – spray paint wasn’t going to fix it. I decided to use my budget to try and buy a light clearanced out, new pulls, and textiles. So, this meant I had to be willing to repaint a brand new light fixture to get it exactly the customized shade I was looking for. I found a light on clearance for $40 and it was exactly perfect for this DIY tutorial! Except that it was brown and not black. I also pulled a mirror that was the perfect size from my guest room – and it’s also brown and not black. That’s where my handy dandy can of spray paint comes in.
It’s important to always use the right spray paint for your projects. In this case, I’m spray painting metal so enamel paint is best. It will last longer on metal surfaces compared to lacquer. It also adheres better the the metal. Sometimes I will use a top coat to help seal in the color, but not always. I usually only do that on “high traffic” items that get used a lot or touched a lot like chairs, furniture, etc. Because this bathroom mirror and light fixture is a “hung and done” kind of deal, I’m not worried about the paint coming off.
You should use 2-3 light coats of paint which is always a good idea when spray painting to ensure you’re getting full coverage. Also, I’ll emphasize LIGHT coats! If you spray it on too thick it’ll probably drip and then it’ll be obvious that it was spray painted. Try and stand a good 12 inches away from your fixtures so that it doesn’t bubble up and look sloppy.
It’s important to wedge your tape right up underneath the frame of your mirror so you don’t “accidentally” leave a thick stripe of spray paint. The more of the tape you get under the frame the better.
The great thing about spray paint is that it only takes seconds to get an even coat… it’s the dry time between coats that can be time-consuming. A half-hour is a good amount of time to wait in between coats if the coats are light.
If you don’t have fixtures – or yours were so outdated like mine then you should check out my latest post on choosing the right fixtures for your bath!