Dining Room Revamp Part 2

I hope you all had a fabulous Valentines day-we ordered Chinese and watched The Vow-it was fabulous. 

Today I am sharing the finale to our dining room revamp!  

Our dining room table is the only piece of furniture that we kept for the new and improved space.  I’ve talked about the table before here, it’s such a solid piece and can totally withstand my two girls sitting on it (literally sitting on top of it because that’s how they do).

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girls 019Now lets talk Craigslist and the bench pictured above.  I rescued these lovelies from a playroom full of toddler jumping and marker scribbles.  Someone was practically giving them away at $40 for the pair.  I was sort of taking a gamble seeing as I had no idea how long they were, but in the end the turned out to be perfect.  Now while the benches themselves were cheap, the vinyl to reupholster them certainly was not!  I went with a more expensive vinyl that feels soft and buttery, and has a lovely stretch that cheaper marine vinyl does not have-it was $35 a yard, but I we (my mom purchased 5 yards for me as part of my xmas gift) held out for sales and ended up spending about $160 for 8 yards-which sure beats the $280ish dollars it would have been.  I don’t have a lot of photos from the reupholstering process because we had no idea what we were doing, and it would be like the blind leading the blind- we don’t know two shits about upholstering.  What I will tell you is that for first timers I think we really did a great job! 067

We had to remove the bench from the frame to reupholster it, and in order to get the benches to scoot under the table we sawed off part of the arm.  To conceal the staples, and add some interest we added gold upholstery tacks.  And remember when I talked about painting the wing-back chairs following that great tutorial from Hyphen Interiors?  Well, I did.  I can’t say I’m thrilled with the results, which is why I’m purchasing black slipcovers instead.  You can see from one of the photos that they are a little streaky, and the fabric does feel similar to a stiff canvas-but it’s just not comfortable.  And talk about lint magnets! 

Without any further jabbering, here is another before and after:

tada!

I removed the wing-back so you could see the benches and the rugs underneath the table

whole view good

The gorgeous over-dyed rugs (they didn’t have one quite big enough so I bought two and put them together) are from Rugs USA.  I cannot find this particular rug (the Kimberly) on their site anymore, but I bought mine when they were 70% off, and they quickly sold out.  Nuloom, which I believe is the actual maker/supplier of the rug, is also sold out.  These rugs were normally around $500 a piece, and I scored two 5×8’s for $300!  They are hand tufted over-dyed wool, and the quality is absolutely amazing!  I love the way they ground the space.  

side view with wingback

side view 2

side view 3

I Love the Ikea Stockholm chandelier, the mid-century dresser, and the faux sheepskin.  All those elements together are glamorous without being over the top.

books on tableSince I decided not to put the books back into the room, I knew neat piles of books on the table would have to suffice.  This is where I read, sew, menu plan, and I needed the space to reflect that without being cluttered by books.cluttered classy

side view 1

nailhead trim

side view bench

ranarp ikea light

I knew these Ranarp industrial sconces from Ikea would become very popular, and I was right because weeks after I purchased mine Country Living featured them in their magazine.  These chic clamp on spotlights add a lovely industrial/boho vibe that tempers some of the girly elements in the room. I don’t know if this happens to you, but I seem to predict trends simply based on what I’m drawn to at the moment.  It happens all the time.  Like when HGTV had a feature recently on the Benjamin Moore paint color “Hot Lips”.  I was like, “whaaaa?” My kitchen has been hot lips for over a year! 

ikea lights

side view with window seat window seat 1

032Painterly fabrics are so hot right now.  I fell in love with these pillows on Etsy, but couldn’t justify the close to $100 for the two of them.  Luckily I found this pretty painterly fabric at Jo-Ann Fabrics.  It’s a satin broadcloth with a lovely bit of stretch.  It is incredibly soft, and feels a bit luxurious for the price since it’s just $16 a yard.  Since I splurged on the vinyl for the benches, I went with another heavier duty sateen broadcloth to cover the window seat.

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target tabeThreshold for Target table that I scored for $23!

window seat 3

Hope ya’ll enjoyed my makeover story!

XO-Tara

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A Dining Room Revamp…

 After years of living in white-walled apartments I was both excited and overwhelmed at the decorating possibilities that lay before me after we purchased our 1929 bungalow.  No more horrendous brown carpet, eggshell paint, and New York City sized kitchens.  But as a self diagnosed “serial decorator” I was a little too eager to get this house looking spiffy.  I made A LOT of mistakes.  I was impatient, and on top of that we were completely broke for the first few months because I wasn’t working.  Broke AND impatient are not a good basis for any worthy design plan.  In the first week of being moved in to our new home I painted our living room a yummy shade of Pepto Bismal pink.  Then without so much as a blink, stenciled a purple Ikat pattern on the dining room walls.  It looked like I hired a 12 yr old girl to do my decorating for me.  I had some sort of ill decorating syndrome from years of living in bland apartments, which prevented me from painting or doing anything that wasn’t completely over the top-and WRONG.  Because I had never been able to choose paint colors before, I thought I was relegated to super saturated intense colors.  Why after years of being held back from decorating the way I wanted, would I choose barely there paint colors that you could hardly notice??? I wanted to make a statement-and boy did I.  

Case & point:

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Hodge Podge is the word that comes to mind when looking at this photo.  This was right before we painted the living room Lily Lavender by Benjamin Moore.  (never mind the ghost lights or the folded laundry) Once we lightened up, everything started making more sense.  I still had lots of work to do, but that was definitely my turning point.  I realized that sometimes less is MORE.   And as much as I still hate things being “undone”, I understand now that it takes time, and I think the bottom photo proves that I learned my lesson.  

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 Now you might think I’m just getting ready to share a dining room overhaul with you-and I am, but I’m also sharing a lot more…Growth.  I like to think of this as a sort of decorating coming of age tale if you will.  I’ll be thirty-one this year.  I’ve spent four years growing into myself-in this house that I adore, and this dining room signifies not only personal growth, but the growth I’ve experienced as a decorator.  The design was well thought out, yet also instinctual.  It’s bohemian, and glamorous, and super comfy.  It’s truly a space to “hang out” in, and that’s exactly what we do each night as we put on Frank Sinatra, light the candles, and enjoy a meal together.  

I’m sharing this revamp (more like complete overhaul) in three stages.  It would be far too much to cram all into one post, and I want to compare each area with the before photos.  So suck it

I’m not going to lie, I nearly had a panic attack when we started painting over the Ikat, but I instantly knew I would love having a dark and cozy dining room.  The paint color is Mark Twain grey by Valspar.

before after

corner sideboard view

corner view light off

booze close up

I removed the bar cart from the living room, and opted instead for this tabletop version.  I am still on the hunt for the perfect tray to sit underneath.  books DR close up

I nabbed the mid-century dresser on Craigslist for $70.  The brand is Lenoir House, which was a division of Broyhill.  Lenoir House sold the companies more modest priced pieces. I’m also still (after all these years) thinking of a way to disguise that plywood covered hole in the floor which use to be where the coal burning furnace was.

window seat view

The floor lamp is from Target, and the shade is covered in a cheapie Ikea stripe, which I also used for some euro pillows on the window seat.  I like the unconventional pairing of the table lamp on one side, with the floor lamp on the other.  The large oval mirror (also Ikea) reflects so much light and prettiness from the rest of the room.  

As with most things, it’s not 100% finished-I will undoubtedly change things, but the bones of this room are so right that I imagine it will stay this way for quite a while.  

Xo-Tara

Wingbacks & Paint Decks

Hey Guys!

I neglected the good Ol’ blog last week, but I did manage to find two great wingback chairs for a reasonable price ($70 for the pair).  They are in amazing condition, very sturdy, near perfect upholstery, and the feminine shape I prefer.  I am definitely going forward with painting them. I’ve read nearly every tutorial on the subject, and feel confident that It will give me the custom look I want, with a price tag I can actually afford.  

wordI busted out our my moms trusty Benjamin Moore paint deck to start the process of choosing a paint color for these gems.  I am leaning towards kelly green/emerald-green, but tomorrow I could be dead set on lavender!  I’m not shy when it comes to color, if you haven’t noticed.  I have a lavender living room, dark purple ikat dining room, hot pink kitchen, and turquoise breakfast nook.  It sounds like crazy town, but I promise you it works!  I know it sounds like I choose colors on whim, but it’s very intentional, and a lot of time is spent lugging these heavy ass paint decks around trying to decide on the perfect color.  

I welcome your input as to what the color of these chairs should be! 

In other news, we will probably get started making the benches in a few weeks.  I cannot wait!  The wingback chairs take up more visual weight, so having three chairs on each side is too cluttered for my liking.  The simplicity of the benches will allow the wingback chairs to bask in the spotlight.  

I’m still deciding on fabric options for the window seat and pillows, and also trying to decide if I can spruce up the buffet enough to warrant keeping it.  It has a sort of medieval vibe-largely due to the hardware, so a simple swap might suffice.  I was also thinking of painting it to match the wingback chairs-for consistencies sake.

OK-I really must go and make the corn chowder I promised my children for dinner

(Deborah Madison’s recipe-It’s fantastic!)

XO-Tara

 

Ikat Dining Room

Bonjour!

It’s a gloomy day in my neck of the woods, so I thought it would be fun to show you some photos of my vibrant dining room! 

instagram of DR

When we bought our house the dining room was a big white box.  A blank slate is great except that the whole “possibilities are endless” thing can really wear on a person over time.  I had concrete ideas about what I wanted for our dining room.  A dining room/library combo, a huge  table, a window seat, and stenciled walls.  I had the idea to stencil the walls right from the beginning. A stencil is the perfect option for someone who loves wallpaper but either cannot afford it, or is afraid of the commitment. Why purple ikat? I have always adored everything from Madeline Weinrib, especially this purple ikat fabric, and I wanted something that replicated that rich design.  I used the Samarkand stencil from Cutting Edge Stencils, and the paint color is byzantine purple by Olympic.  My husband has a B.F.A. with a concentration in printmaking so naturally I made him do the stencil.  It took roughly two days to complete, and it was absolutely worth it, because it really couldn’t have turned out more perfect.

Once the window seat was built, I had the idea to “frame” the little nook with all of our books.  We used sets of L brackets to construct the towers of books.  In each column there are four sets of L brackets.  The books are piled on top of the brackets to create the illusion that they are just casually stacked from the floor up. A shelf painted the same color of the walls (to blend in) spans from one column of books to the other and helps finish that “library” feel we were going for.  I love me some inspiration boards, so the inside of the walls have photos and magazine clippings taped up with washi tape.  I do have to say that I’m ready for a change of pillows, the zebra Waverly print on the euro shams might stay, but the other pillows which are outdoor by Waverly, are too childish for the space.  Also the window seat cushion needs to visit an upholsterer for a snazzy new cover-so I’ve started brainstorming, and fabric searching.  I am also on the hunt for dining room chairs, something much more comfortable than the old things we have now.  I’ve been contemplating benches with thick cushions, but anything with an upholstered seat would be better than what we have now.  So stay tuned for another installment of Tara’s incessant need to change things! 

The photo lampshades were a fun way to personalize the space.  They are Instagram prints (printed using PostalPix) that we covered in adhesive and attached to the lampshades.  F.U.N.

A quick word about our dining table.  It’s this one from Ikea, although ours is the larger one that seats up to 14 people. It comes in three colors- black, brown, and birch.  No Bueno.  I did not want a big honkin black table in this space, but I did want the largest table I could find, and for cheap! So I purchased said table.  Then one nice summer day I proceeded to carry the big honkin table outside and sand the veneer right off of it.  It. took. forever.  Then I stained it, and polyurethaned it.  It’s not exactly rustic, but I don’t mind.  It is extremely sturdy, and for the cost of the table ($300) plus $20 for stain & polyurethane- I have the sort of table I had always dreamed of having, all with a very low price tag.  

color view DR

all books with light

close up seat

close up seat 2

perspective DR

lampshade closeup

 

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