Tuesday, July 2, 2013

pictures, maps, and lamp shades, OH MY!

The front room redo has been slow going! For one thing,  I like working on things as inspiration strikes.  And for another, we have a budget.  Once we got it back together and it was usable, I kinda sat back and waited to see what I thought belonged in there.  And I enjoyed the sitting in there.  The colors are perfection and it is so restful. There is no tv and only lamps so the lighting is not too bright.  The 2 big windows look out onto my front porch (which is sadly boring but I've got ideas brewing) and although the porch itself isn't exciting, my clematis is growing and blooming and there is a pretty blooming tree out there.  Restful.  

So one of the things that the room needed was some personalization.  As a blank slate, it could have been anywhere.  A restful beach house, a massage room, whatever.  There was nothing that made it belong to our family alone.  So I added a photo wall.

The frames are all frames I had lying around the house or got at resale for less than a buck each.  I just painted them all the same color (the wall color) and hung them using Command picture hanging strips.  The Command strips were the most expensive part of this project but  Hello!  NO holes in my new wall thank you very much.

Then for my birthday I got a map.  It's all I wanted.  I picked it out all by myself.  I wanted a big one with muted colors.  I didn't want it to look like a school room map (I already have one of those).  Then I discovered that to buy a nice bulletin board to stick it on was going to cost over $100.  NO WAY!  So I started doing some thinking and planning and had an idea.  Then I had a BETTER idea.  There was an old (read ugly) bulletin board hanging in the boys' room.  It was just full of junk and all mixed up anyway.  So I told them I would buy them each a small bulletin board and I was taking the big one.  Then I covered it with white fabric (an old sheet to be honest) and put my map on it.  I bought wooden push pins and we are tracking all the trips we take across the US as vacations (both as a family and just the King and I).

I do need to work on the edging.  I'm kinda thinking that I'm gonna hot glue jute around them just to create a more defined frame. 

And then there is the lighting.  When we got this house we bought and put in a brand new ceiling fan with lights.  The lights never worked.  After a while I took the stupid things down cause they irritated me since they never worked.  But we love the ceiling fan.   Then we used lamps.  For the longest time we used some old lamps from my mom's attic.  Not ideal but they provided light.  Then I found these at Goodwill.

I love their shape.  But the color was drab and dirty and the shades were too small.  And they needed rewired.  I got the wiring kit at Menards and with only a couple difficulties got them rewired.  Then gave them a couple coats of paint.

   While we were painting the lamps we also painted a couple wooden trays that some Melissa & Doug toys came in.  (you can see it in the picture of my photo wall) Who woulda guessed?  

Now for shades.  I was REALLY struggling.  I found some I liked at Menards....but they were white with ruffles and I was afraid they would look dirty very quickly.  So I waited.

Then I found these at another resale shop.  Ugly huh!  But they are the exact size and shape I was hoping for!  I found my fabric and tore the old shades apart (the were so sun rotted that the fabric powdered in my hands-it was gross).  After stitching the new bold fabric onto the old metal frames, I have perfect lamps for my relaxing room.

Unless there is a level of awesomeness only to be achieved by redoing lampshades again I will never likely repeat this project.  It was kinda a pain in the neck.  But the result was totally worth it....this time.

I sit in there every morning before the kids get up and drink a cup of coffee, read my Bible, and enjoy the quiet stillness of my awesome room.  And then a day in my life begins and I forget what quiet sounds like.  Aaaah, makes the next morning something to look forward to.  :)

Now to convince the King to let me keep working thru the rest of the house.  I have ideas for the boys' bedroom, to finish up our bedroom, to make L's room more "big girl room" and less nursery AND I wanna rip out the rest of these ugly floors and get laminate...oh if we didn't have a budget.

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