Master and Commander (of the bedroom)

Shame on you if you thought this was going to be about something besides bedroom DIY.

We have lived in our house for almost 21 months, and haven’t really done much to our bedroom.  The only rooms we’ve pretty much finished have been Harrison’s and Beckett’s rooms. To be honest, I’m not sure when our room will be completely finished. If you haven’t seen it in person, let me tell you; it’s MASSIVE! It’s not exactly what we were going for when looking to move to a new home. We were pretty content with our previous bedroom. We would have been fine with the same size master, or perhaps a little bigger. I think two of our other bedroom would fit in this one, and that’s not including the bathroom and closets.

So, here’s what the room looked like before we moved in.

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See. Ginormous! We added a few pieces of furniture since we first moved in: another dresser (yes, you read that right), a trunk, some night stands, a coffee table, and two chairs. Yep, we have a corner in our room akin to a sitting room. Here are some pictures. Pardon the mess. There’s a 3-year-old and a 15-month-old who like to be in our room.

From the doorway.

From the doorway.

Right side of bed.

Right side of bed.

Sitting area to left of door looking out.

Sitting area to left of door looking out.

Looking on into upstairs living space.

Looking on into upstairs living space.

Left wall toward front of house.

Left wall toward front of house.

Right wall with bathroom door.

Right wall with bathroom door.

We hadn’t changed the wall color, and even though there’s plenty of furniture, the room still looks empty. It really felt like a modge podge of items. We also didn’t have anything up on the walls except for the art work above the chairs. David hung those up just to have something on the wall. To brag about my husband (again), he put together that seating area before we came home from the hospital with Beckett. Anyway, back to the bedroom.

Pinterest was helping us find inspiration for the bedroom (decor, people), but we still hadn’t really done anything. Finally, a month or so ago, I mentioned to David that I would like to paint the bedroom for my birthday, and maybe pick another project (bedding, some type of wall feature, crown molding). Well, we decided on a paint color, and I knew David would likely be painting our room for my birthday. No spoilers, there.  Except, he went and made a tufted headboard.


Then, when I came home from a weekend in Chicago this past Monday, I discovered this:

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Not only did David paint our room, he put up board and batten, crown molding, and made picture ledges. What’s even better, is that my dad, older brother, father-in-law, and Harrison helped out. Yep. Harrison and Grandpa B. made the picture ledges together. A whole slew of family were in on this (from parents to siblings and aunt and uncles). If I ever wonder how loved I am, someone please refer me to this post.

We still have a list of things to do:

  • Substantial rug under the bed (at least 8×10)
  • New curtains, or modify current curtains in some way. I do like the color.
  • Find some items (art or otherwise) to hang on the walls
  • Add two more vertical slats(?) of wood (one on each end) to the board and batten
  • Do something with the bench at the end of the bed. It doesn’t go anymore.
  • New duvet cover. The current one on our bed, while nice, is a coverlet we already owned. We like our down comforter, and comforter + coverlet = too warm in the summer.

Obviously, we can’t do all of those things at once, but that’s what we are enjoying about this house. We really rushed into things the first go-around, and while we loved our first house, we learned a lot along the way. I don’t think our room would have turned out this way at all if we’d jumped right in almost 2 years ago. I also think David needed that time to muster up the strength/courage to take on these projects. I am so thankful he did take these projects on. Seven years of marriage, and I’m still learning new things about this man.

Harrison’s “Big Boy” Room

When we first looked at our current house almost two years ago, what is now Harrison’s room looked liked this:

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Well, we took out the chandelier pretty quickly and the “girly” curtain rod. That was about it until last September. He actually liked the green, and it went with the rug and bedding we already had from his previous room. Plus, he wasn’t even two-years-old, and I’m pretty sure as long as his things were in his room, he was cool with it. Honestly, he’d still be fine with it, but Mommy wanted something different. Maybe no one else feels this way about some colors (barring pink and purple), but I felt this green was more feminine. It wasn’t a grass or hunter green. It was more of a “minty” green. Perhaps I was jaded knowing it was a girl’s room before.

Regardless, I was ready for a change. Harrison had transitioned out of his crib several months earlier, and he was turning 3. I felt like he was ready for a “big boy” room. I had been bringing home paint swatches and scouring Craigslist for dressers and other furniture. It may go without saying, but I was also “pinning” A LOT of inspiration rooms on Pinterest. Here’s what caught my eye:

Image via Apartment Therapy

Image via Apartment Therapy

Image via Apartment Therapy

There was so much I loved about each of these rooms. I loved the color scheme in all of them, and how open and child-friendly each room seemed. They also all have a “collected” feel. I’m not a big fan of everything new or purchasing a set of furniture. I loved the mix of masculine and child-like. They also seemed so inviting, which I think is key for any room, but particularly a room you expect your toddler to spend time (i.e., sleep) in. I also wanted something he could grow with. That point quickly steered me away from anything with a theme. I was happy to put a print on the wall and maybe sheets with characters (that would be covered by a blanket), but I wasn’t going to paint a mural of his current fascination (trucks) for him to tell me a year later he wanted fish. By the way, it’s still trucks.

Anyway, it’s not “done”, but it’s coming together. I had been slowly gathering items for Harrison’s room once I had a plan. His dresser was a steal off Craigslist that we had painted, and I found the shelving unit above the dresser on clearance at HomeGoods. On the dresser are a few sentimental items. The flag is from Harrison’s godfather. It was a flag that flew over his unit’s base camp in Afghanistan. The framed ultrasound was a gift from my parents on Harrison’s first Christmas. I picked up that frame with the vintage Peter Rabbit illustration at a flea market in North Carolina.

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The shelving unit is full of more sentimental treasures. The musical snow globe was from Harrison’s Aunt Katie and Uncle Kevin after he was born. There’s a Truman the Tiger from Uncle Scott, a teddy bear from one of David’s trips to Germany, and a faux Oscar from another trip to LA. The books are old (vintage?) Winnie the Pooh books Grandpa B. recently picked up.

I purchased the cow print hanging above one of Harrison’s bookcases on clearance at Ikea.



The light fixture was actually from a 3-pack of hanging lights I purchased from World Market for Beckett’s room. He has the biggest and smallest lights in his room, and we used the medium-sized one in Harrison’s room. We purchased a small pendant kit for $12, and it was all good.

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I purchased the rug on clearance at Tuesday Morning. It was one of those rugs I had to have, and if Harrison didn’t like it in his room, I was going to find someplace else for it. It was already 60% off, and then the sales woman pointed out an “inconsistency” in the yarn. I didn’t even see it, but when I asked if they’d knock some more off the price, she said she’d take another 25% off. Doesn’t hurt to ask!

We still plan on putting in a twin-sized bed, installing a project of mine above his bed, changing up the bookcases (with paint or fabric), painting stripes on his curtains, and tackling his closet. We’re thinking of making it part closet/part reading nook.

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You may notice Harrison’s room devoid of any toys, and that’s purposeful. I didn’t clean up  before taking pictures (other than some “staging”). I’ll cover that topic in another post. Also, the boys’ rooms are the only two in the house that anything has been done to other than placing furniture in them. I think our room is next.

Nursery Progress: It’s Done

…almost. For all intents and purposes, Beckett’s (it’s nice to use his name now) nursery is completed. There are just a few minor things to do (hang some diy hooks, paint the closet, organize the closet), but I am pleased with how everything turned out. It’s been quite the process, one that we completed a week before Beckett decided to join our family.

If you don’t remember, we started with this:

Room before previous owners moved out.

Then we had “the wall”.

A lot of tape and a little bit of paint later...

Which turned into this.

Partially completed nursery.

Now, we finally have a room just for Beckett. 

There it is. The nursery in all its most of its glory. Beckett loves it. Ha, he’s taken one nap in there, had a few diaper changes, and gone with Mommy to get clothes out of his closet, and that’s it. Currently, Beckett is sleeping in a bassinet in our room. We figured that since his room is next to Harrison’s we’d be better off having him in our room for the first month or so while we establish a sleeping routine. Harrison can sleep through anything, so it’s more to relieve my stress of worrying Harrison will wake up when we go to get Beckett. Yep, so all that hard work, and, right now, our little peanut sleeps here:

Beckett's temporary "room"

In case you’re wondering, here’s a little breakdown of where items in Beckett’s room came from:

  • Crib: Baby Mod Modena 3-in-1 Crib from 
  • Chair: Morgan Chair from 
  • Ottoman/basket: already owned, but purchased from Target a few years ago 
  • Faux sheepskin rugs: Ikea
  • Floor rug: blanket purchased from an estate sale 
  • Cardboard antelope head: gift from David when he was in Munich last summer
  • Curtains: Grayson Grommet Window Panel from Target 
  • Shelving unit and drawers: Expedit system from Ikea 
  • Drawer pulls: HomeGoods and World Market 
  • Wire baskets: Smith & Hawkens baskets on clearance at Target 
  • Lamp: T.J. Maxx 
  • Ceiling light fixture: Irving Burlap Shades, set of 3, from World Market (we put one in the closet and the other in Harrison’s room using pendant conversion kits). 
  • Frames: already owned, from Ikea 
  • Prints: all the prints in the 8.5 x 11 frames came from Feed Your Soul. The bird prints are wrapping paper. The ikat fabric is a napkin from World Market. The grey and yellow prints are free downloadable printables from tatertots and jello
  • Shelving above changing table: Ikea spice racks 
  • Mobile: handmade; tutorial can be found here.

To read about Beckett’s room from the very beginning, you can read here, here, and here.

Nursery Progress: Update #3

This is the biggest progress post to date. There’s actually more to show this time than one completed wall (although, that one wall took a long time and probably deserved a few posts of its own). If you’ll recall, we started with this:

Bedroom before we moved in.

Then, we had this, along with an otherwise empty room:

A lot of tape and a bit of paint later...

And, we eventually had this. The room was still otherwise empty:

The "feature" wall.

Well, we now have this to be proud of. And, I do mean proud. We loved Harrison’s room at our first home, but we invested so much more into this room because we had NOTHING! I take that back; we had the blinds and the storage basket we decided to repurpose as an ottoman for the chair. Here’s the room, so far.

View from the door.

Close-up of storage and soon to be changing table.

One of my favorite views.

The rest of the room.

While we are quite pleased with how the room is turning out, there is still a lot to do.

  1. We have to finish making that shelving unit a changing table. We are also hanging a mobile I made above it and adding some art on the wall above it. Something like this:
  2. I’m not sure about the curtains. They were a great deal at Target, but I feel like that side of the room is too “gray-heavy”. I know there’s a lot of color on the feature wall and the bedding is light, and we have some contrast pieces on the chair, but I feel like we need some more cream or yellow in the curtains. I’m thinking of buying some fabric and having my mom help me (because I can’t do it) sew some contrasting panels on the top and bottom of the curtain panels.
  3. We have two shelves (featured next to the chair) to hang on the wall. I want to put a few books and stuffed animals in them.
  4. We have some art to hang on that blank wall next to the doorway. We just need to come up with a layout we like so we can make a template and then get it up on the wall.
  5. I made some wall hooks that we need to hang next to the closet to display some cute outfits and swaddles.

So, not a lot as you can tell… Actually, it sounds like a lot to do, but most of it is completed and just waiting to be “installed”. This stuff takes a lot longer to do when you have a toddler and you’re getting more and more pregnant. I know we can do it, though.

To read how we started and the progress before this, you can read here and here

Nursery Update

This is a (very) short post on the nursery painting. It’s done! (sigh of relief followed by the realization that there’s still a lot to do in a short amount of time.) I had the wrong lens on my camera to get a wide-angle shot, so these are just a couple of close-ups of the finished “feature” wall. We are quite pleased.

First, though, remember when I teased you with this photo:

Well, that turned into this:

This next part is going to sound like an acceptance speech at the Oscars, and I already hear the orchestra playing me off stage, but we really do have a lot of people to thank for making this happen (I hope you know who you are). From providing a place for Harrison to sleep, to watching him while David and I painted, to helping us tape and paint, we have some awesome friends and family. Thank you all!

Now, that mattress just needs to get here…

If you’re interested in the “before”, you can read here. Please tell me you notice a difference. 

Nursery Progress

At 30 weeks, I’m more than a little nervous that we aren’t further along with the nursery. Maybe we weren’t further along with Harrison’s room at this stage, but I thought we were. With Harrison’s room we didn’t paint the walls because we already decided we could make the color work, and my co-worker’s husband painted a tree mural on the wall. Other than that, we repurposed some furniture and put in the crib and a rocking chair. This time around, we are pretty much starting from scratch. We started with an empty room with a wall color that we didn’t like. Enter “Project Nursery”.

The first step was to pick a color or colors for the room. We found a great blanket (more on that later) at an estate sale a few months back, and I decided I liked it for the nursery. Using that for color-inspiration, I headed to Lowe’s and got some paint samples in Olympic’s No VOC paint. We decided on our two colors: Sea Sprite and Heirloom Lace.

These two colors were not just for wall color and trim. No, I had bigger plans in mind. Enter Pinterest. Clearly, I was jumping on the chevron bandwagon. There are plenty of examples out there, as I found while perusing the Internet and pinning ideas. Here are a few I particularly liked:

This one from sabbe interior design that used contact paper and a mix of wide and narrow chevron.

And this grey and white chevron from House 36. This one seemed closest to the size of the wall we were hoping to cover and the size of chevron.

After finding some great inspiration, we needed to find some good tutorials. A lot of people referred to this tutorial from Casa Cullen. We had all the materials for this on hand, but I was concerned about getting the chalk line off the wall. Then, I saw these tutorials from Caitlin Wilson Design and Make Them Wonder. We did a combination of the two.

After David finished marking the wall for the chevron, and I started taping, I realized I wanted to go a different direction. I got very excited about what I was thinking, and quickly began looking up inspiration for my latest plan. That’s when I saw these:

A herringbone ceiling from Vintage Revivals:

Herringbone plates by forest clearing.

I’ll post later on why those plates were so inspiring, but for now, here are some pictures of the progress we’ve made with the painting so far.

Taping out the stripes

A lot of tape and a little bit of paint later...

Slowly, butt (oops, I mean "but") surely

We still have to put the other colors (say what?!) on the wall and put a second coat on the other walls, and paint the trim, but hey who’s keeping track of all that anyway. Man, and that’s just painting. We also have to assemble furniture like, oh, the crib. I can’t even think about that right now (but I am anyway). We still need a mattress for that crib and bedding for that mattress, and … too many other things.