Hi you guys!! It's Week 3 of the One Room Challenge that Linda at Calling it Home is hosting. That means I'm supposed to be half way through my bedroom project. And guess what? Haha...heh...we got almost nothing done this past week. It wasn't that we didn't try...it's just that this was the point in the project where ev-er-y-thing had to go wrong. It was totally a comedy of errors.
Let me start with a little tally of the low points:
- I bought a light fixture that won't attach to a sloped ceiling. Ryan has been to Home Depot 4 separate times already trying to find a solution, and he's headed there again tomorrow. Oops.
- I started on our window. When we removed the windows to paint them, it revealed that the bottom of one was completely riddled with wood rot. The bottom of the sash actually fell off.
- Meanwhile, the glass seals are broken causing condensation to build up between the panes that the window guy from Lowes called "the worst I've ever seen." They are uncleanable, and you pretty much can't see through two of them.
- Rumor had it that Ace Hardware could repair windows. I called and they said they could replace the glass, but at a cost of nearly $200 per window (in case we're counting that's $1200) and they can't even fix the wood frame. The quote from Lowes for new windows was between $1600-$2200, depending if we go with vinyl or wood. Since last time I checked money doesn't grow on trees, duct tape and denial is looking like a good solution.
- When I went to paint, the Zinnser primer in the basement had turned to solid caramel colored disgustingness, and the trim paint was completely dried up in the can. A very minor problem, but it meant trip #5 to Home Depot.
- The wood trim at the center of the top of the window, it turns out, isn't wide enough to support the curtain brackets we bought. And if we add wood to make it bigger, then the bracket will protrude out beyond the brackets that are on the wall, causing the rod to bow. That might not make any sense, but suffice it to say, I can't hang the rod I bought how I want to. Boo.
- I had a brilliant plan that Ryan could drill a couple holes to turn my simple bedside pendants into something grander. No dice, but I'm not giving up hope (see below).
- Weather! We needed to spray paint our curtain rod and a sunny, warm-enough day without too much wind did not arrive. At least not on the same day we were actually home with time to spray paint.
- Bed frame: Backordered. And I'm highly suspicious that this purchase isn't going to work out. My email confirmation actually said, "price not confirmed yet." How is that even possible? You told me a price and I gave you my credit card. Apparently I don't know how "buying things" works.
- Settee: Did you guys know that it costs like A TON to reupholster something? Sarah's House makes that sound like a lark. Trickery! I got a quote from a lady who is supposed to be really reasonable to reupholster it for $150. That seemed high to me, and she can't start until early June, so I shopped around. The next quote came back at $475 labor plus 10 yards of fabric. Oh brother.
I *think* that was the sum total of my frustrations this week. I hope it doesn't sound too much like I'm complaining...after all, this is still highly fun. :)
Here are some pictures and specifics about the products we've chosen and progress.
This is the light fixture I bought for the center of our room. Obviously a far cry from the copper beauty in Kate Arends' bedroom, but those cost like $700 and this was $40. And honestly after seeing it in this room caught by Liz Wang on Instagram, I can say I do really truly love it. Originally I thought I might even spray it copper, but once Ryan held it up I loved it just as it is in white. I was quite excited because, light fixture, check! (In case you're keeping tabs, yes, I abandoned the quest for a ceiling fan. We will just hang this until we find a fan I really love at a reasonable price, and/ or the summer heat becomes unbearable. Whichever happens first).
Alright, so finding something was the easy part. Installing it is another issue! This is what it currently looks like in our room:
Turns out that odd little cone shaped thing at the top of the fixture won't fit flush against a sloped ceiling. My bad.
Next up, bedside lighting. I kept seeing hanging bulbs on Pinterest, and absolutely fell in love with the look of them. Pinterest led me to the West Elm blog, which linked to this picture on Casey Keasler's Instagram. I had to scroll through back to November (hi, I'm a stalker), and read all the comments to learn that she actually pieced it together through a company called Color Cord. Once I landed at the Color Cord website, I was like a kid in candy land. They have so much cool stuff! I found all the supplies to make one just like Casey's. (Which if you're curious includes a black braided rope, Edison bulb, brass socket, and plug). One pendant adds up to only about $60.
These are from Ladies and Gentelmen Studio and again are like $400 so there was no way. But aren't they stunning?! I had the brilliant idea that I would just buy a metal ring (like the ones Kyla used in this project), spray it gold, and have Ryan drill some holes to add it to the light we built.
I still have high hopes that this plan will work, but it isn't looking good. Ryan has titanium diamond kyrptonite drill bits (or something) and they still won't make more than tiny divets in the metal of the socket. So we can't attach the hoop. It's also entirely likely that if we do get the hoop to attach, the bulb will hang drunkenly crooked inside it. But we have to keep trying! Now that I have everything in the space, the bulb alone without the hoop looks kinda dinky over the nightstand. So it neeeeeds the hoop. You can cross your fingers. Ryan's only met one thing that he couldn't fix, (garage sale clock, which he rues to this day), so I believe in him.
Isn't it starting to look amazing? This window plus white paint is making all the difference. With the blinds gone and the paint lightened up, the sunshine just floods into the room and swathes the whole thing in wonderful light. It makes me want to be a cat and lay in that bed all day.
But no progress comes without pain in the DIY trenches.
This was my first attempt at painting. Note: Zinsser Primer is wonderful stuff that will cling to anything (totally worth the asphyxiation by fumes) but it will turn into all kinds of very bad things if you leave it in the basement for months with a less-than-tightly-sealed lid.
And here's a close-up look at the window damage that I'm planning to duct tape and ignore:
At first I was like, "Wha?! Are we seriously not going to fix that? Aren't you like, supposed to fix stuff when you're a home owner?" But then I was like, "Meh, why do I want to spend $1600 on something that doesn't have the words vintage or Persian in it? I mean, the rot isn't visible if we don't open the window. Sure, it doesn't function and might endanger someone's life, and yeah, we probably won't pass an inspection if we ever want to sell the house, but whatever. Turns out I can live with that if it means I get to keep the rug.
Let's just focus on how ethereal and pretty it's going to look when we finally (somehow) get these drapes hung. Don't they look lovely next to the pillow shams?
Speaking of shams, I'll give you an update of where we're at with the bedding quest!
As you may remember, the duvet cover I settled on from H&M was sold out. So I bought almost the exact same thing from West Elm. Days later I decided that charcoal grey is just too dark for the look I was going for originally, and that it would be too dark with the rug.
If you look at the master bedroom pin board I've been keeping for awhile, it's always been about light and white. So I wanted to stay true to that, as I think the Kate Arends room temporarily distracted me.
I ended up seeing this duvet cover in "cream" on an end cap in Target and I just had to try it for $90. It says linen-cotton, which I can now tell you means cotton on the underside, and linen or a linen blend on the top. Looks-wise, it is gorgeous. It has all the right wrinkles, has a great weight and crispness to it that I love. But it totally feels like sandpaper. Don't get me wrong- I sleep under it just fine (I'm anti-top sheet so this is all I'm sleeping with)- but compared to the Belgian Linen West Elm shams (which I ordered in Champagne Pink and absolutely LOVE)- it feels, well...you get what you pay for. The shams are so wonderfully light and butter soft as, I imagine, good linen is supposed to be. The Target one, no. But I am happy enough, so I'm going to keep it.
The dark grey sheets are from Ikea. They are no luxury either but the sheet was $20 and the pillow cases were $5 each. The fact that I don't have to care about them at. all. is a different kind of luxurious all on its own. I couldn't stand the super sateen finish on them, but luckily it basically washes off! Ha! When lack of quality is a good thing.
I tossed some fur & knit pillows that my cousin Christy sent for Christmas and they look awesome. So all together that's pretty good news- the bed is done, and it didn't cost me an arm and a leg. I feel like I was able to get a touch of a splurge with the pink shams, and everything else is nice looking and practical.
Oh, and I also know some of you were waiting for the report on the Tuft & Needle mattress. I really wasn't sure at first if I liked it, but now I definitely do. I think it was hard to go from an inner spring to a foam. When I hopped in bed, it evoked the feeling you get when you go to dribble a basketball only to discover it's low on air and doesn't bounce back. You know that familiar thud and sense of disappointment? The first few days were like that. I wanted the mattress that is like the hotels have, when you get in your room for the first time and you jump on the king sized bed and bury yourself in the fluffy wall of pillows and pretend the duvet is a parachute. (No? Just me?) This bed just doesn't feel like that! BUT when on night three, a night that I was particularly exhausted and weary, I laid down cradled in a cloud of squishy support and was lulled to sleep in about 2 seconds, I was sold. Ever since that moment, the mattress and I have been besties. So, thumbs up for the Tuft & Needle. It's great.
And that's the end! Whew, sorry, that was really long winded. I'll see you again next week, when hopefully I'll have lots better news to share!
I'm off to Linda's to see how everyone else is doing...