Friday, December 28, 2012

Room Reveal: A Tiny Bathroom Rescue

That's right everyone ... our downstairs guest bathroom was so abysmal that this project can be called nothing other than a rescue! Both for me, and for the bathroom! I can't tell you the number of times I had to grin and bear this abundantly tan, Coca-Cola inspired bathroom, with hope that a new, updated space would soon be in our budget. And as if in a bout of Christmas magic, a few weeks ago it finally was! The beverage bathroom is now gone from our every day lives, and in it's place is a chic, updated gray space that we love. Read on to see how we rescued our tiny bathroom! :) 

Care to see how we arrived at "after"?
These pictures make me cringe! The previous homeowner had passed down to us this horrid, Coca-Cola, wallpaper border in the bathroom, and with such pride too! The pop-themed shower curtain and matching bottle cap curtain rings were the first thing I threw out when we moved in!

For added charm, the border was already peeling in places. Yes, it just screamed classy. 

And to complete the nightmare, the room also had a cheapo medicine cabinet, with bulbs so bright and large they could have lit a spaceship. And the cherry on top of this perfect set-up was an industrial, metal, semi-circle shaped shelving unit, which had already been primed with rust. Complete design fail. Seriously, people. 

So with my last shred of sanity, one Saturday I made it a point to tackle this beast of a bathroom. My first step was to remove the wallpaper border, which actually came down easily thanks to, of course, a Pinterest tip - use an equal mixture of water and liquid fabric softener to spray the border. It literally peeled right off and I only had a to scrape glue in a few places. Thank you pinners! 

Once the banner peeled down, it became even more apparent how beige the room was - the walls AND the ceiling had both been painted the same color! It's funny, I never even noticed with the banner up - apparently it totally stole the show. The photo below is of one of the corners of the room, although I realize it's hard to tell - beige-mania! 

Once I had the walls peeled and cleaned, I set to work on painting. For this room I chose Pittsburgh Paints' Steeple Grey, and used a bright white on the ceiling - what a novel idea, right?! 

But unfortunately, our hope for a makeover comprised of merely a bit of paint and a few new furnishings became a nightmare .... bear with me here. When we had finished painting and it was time to hang a new light fixture (no, sorry, we did not keep the existing medicine cabinet!!!) we discovered a spliced wire in the wall. Sigh. In fact, it was so inconveniently placed that it required us to make two additional holes in the wall in order to fish it out, and correctly re-wire the outlet for our light fixture and for the switches, which were connected to the splice. So, our walls contained beautiful confetti of holes you see below.... 

 Truly, this was enough to make me sick. You can see the splice in the bottom left - the top right hole is where the light fixture was going to be hung. So after a few long days hubs worked some magic and called in his friend who is an electrician, we were able to solve the issue. 

And thank goodness we were! I'm in love with the finished result. What do you think??

Once we figured out our wiring issue, and patched the holes everything really came together, and I was able to utilize several decor tips and tricks I had pinned long ago! One thing I really wanted to do was include a floor to ceiling shower curtain, as well as use two separate panels. It really makes the room look sooooo much bigger, and the curtains are plain white ones the previous owners had left in the linen closet! 

I'm also in love with the light fixture, which can be blamed for all of our headaches. But thank goodness it caused them, or we could have had a serious problem on our hands and never known it. I love the soft white light these shades cast over the mirror.  

And speaking of the mirror, this was a $12 thrift store find - I just painted the frame glossy black. I love the contrast it adds to a room full of white and gray! 

A few of the other new additions are the hooks for towels, rather than a rack...

And the little white shelves above the toilet. We got these from Target, and they allow us a way display a bit of our personalities in such a tiny space. Our shelves house a photo of the beautiful Mackinaw bridge - a favorite vacation spot for my family for generations upon generations. They also proudly display hubby's shaving mug and brush, which was my wedding gift to him. The apothecary jars are also thrift store finds, and only a few members of a much larger collection - I have an obsession with them! 

And no room would be complete without personalized artwork, or at least I'm making it a point to include it! The photo over the towel hooks is a a personal photo from a trip to Alabama, and one of my all-time favorites from my collection. 

And that's about it - there's only so much to show with such limited space! We estimate that this project cost us around $200. Without our wiring issue, it would have been around $1500, which is still pretty good considering the circumstances. In our eyes it was money well spent. Especially when looking at the before and after photos! Look again at the difference! 

I know if nothing else, this makeover has created a much happier girl on Sixth Street! 

What do you think?! I'd love to hear from you! :) 

I'm linking up to: 

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Let Me Call You Sweetheart: DIY Wooden Bedroom Sign

Hi gang! Happy Tuesday!

Today I wanted to share with you a quick project I did over the weekend. Anyone familiar with The Lumineers? No? How about the "Ho Hey" song in the Bing commercials? Whoever just said no needs to take a time out and just listen for a second ... please ...  check this out ...

Sheesh! Thank you! Now that we have that out of the way, you can all do two things: appreciate the thought process behind this project, and thank me for getting this fantastic song stuck in your heads! I tell ya, for the past few months the hubs and I can't seem to shake it, so it seemed a good place to start for wall art for our bedroom.

I thought the lyrics to this would be perfect as wall art over our bed, so I went out to the garage and found a piece of scrap wood, stained it with some leftover walnut gel stain that I used in this $3 stand makeover, and got to work laying out a design in Publisher. Once I found the fonts I liked, I printed the design as a banner and taped the pages together.

As you can see below, I laid out "sweetheart" in different font from the chorus and printed them both as banners that I taped together.

Then I colored the back of the pages with pencil, working on "sweetheart" first since I was planning to put that in white and the rest of the lyrics in black on top of "sweetheart."

I transferred the design onto the wood by laying the pages pencil-colored side down on top of the wood, and tracing the outlines of the letters. I wish I could credit someone for this - I saw it somewhere on Pinterest! It's somewhat hard to see below, but the outlines of the letters showed up nicely on the wood. 

Then I used a white paint pen to trace and color my letters. By the end of this project I was thanking my lucky stars for this little guy! It was a huge time saver - go buy one, no, seven. 

Next I traced and colored in my letters with the pen. This process was somewhat slow and time consuming, but thank goodness for the pen. I'd still be working on this if I'd had to use a paint brush. 

And when I finally finished with what I thought would just be the first step, I had a moment comparable to the Grinch's when his heart grew three sizes ... 

I loved my little sign just the way it was! As much as we loved our Lumineers lyrics, using just one word was simple, sweet and homey rustic, as I like to call it. Perfect for our wood-paneled bedroom! 

So up it went! Since my scrap wood was so thin, I wasn't able to attach any screws or wire to it to hang it from the wall. Instead, I remembered an old pin that I'd seen several times - pop tabs! I did my measuring, hot glued them on to the back, and slightly bent them so that they weren't entirely flush with the sign. 

And there's my sweetheart! 

What do you think? Not bad for my first wooden sign?

I must say, I really love it. It's the perfect size for over the bed, and it's a Sixth Street original. Have you made your own customized wall art? Tell me all about it! 

Thanks for reading! 

I'm linking up to: 

Create & Inspire Linky Party

Monday, November 19, 2012

Mmmmmmonday: Italian Chicken

And so I present to you, the beginning of a running feature. Around this house we love to try new recipes, especially with Pinterest taunting and inspiring with tasty temptations at all times. With this in mind, here on Sixth Street I'll be utilizing Mondays as a chance to share recipe reviews, hence Mmmmmmmondays!

This week's recipe is for Italian Chicken and belongs to Jill at Our Story. This pin was truly love at first sight, I mean look at that! Fresh, ripe roma tomatoes, juicy artichokes, creamy mozzarella and fresh basil - can you say delicious?

Italian Chicken; Fresh, ripe Roma tomatoes, artichokes, cheeses and basil. I made this last night and it was fantastic! :)
Photo courtesy of Our Story.

I'm happy to report that this was nothing short of that expectation. I've made it twice now and we both love it enough to adopt it into our starting roster!

What's more, this was super easy to put together. For us, the quicker the better, as most nights dinner time doesn't come before 7:30 or 8 due to work schedules, and this couldn't have taken more than 10 minutes to whip up and pop in the oven.

The only things I did differently with this recipe is to serve it over quinoa rather than noodles as Jill did, and unfortunately, I didn't have any fresh basil. No matter how you size it up, this is an easy, tasty meal. 

You can find Jill's original post on this recipe here, or pin it from my "clean eating" board here. No matter how you find it, make sure you reach out to her for the recipe! Do it - this one's a keeper!

Thanks for joining me for our first Mmmmmmmonday! 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Living Room Reveal!

Can I get a drumroll?!?! Christmas Vacation-style, please?!?!

Apologies, that move is one of my weaknesses! 

 After much ado, it's finally time to reveal our newly-decorated, comfy cozy, long-awaited and desperately needed living room makeover. Do you remember the room in its original state? Vanilla, as grandma called it. Here are a few glimpses from old posts....

I hate, hate, HATE this next photo but it really does help show how far we've come. You can see the vanilla ... it was everywhere ... carpet, walls, trim and furniture. And though you can't see it in the photo, our TV and stand were in the right-hand corner of the room, opposite the Christmas tree. 

So with that in mind, I've showed you the long, hard days and nights of floor sanding and polyurethane, and I'm pleased to tell you all the hard work has paid off. We no longer have disproportional vanilla, people! 
Take a look....

Does the blue make you as happy as it makes me? I love the sense of calm it brings to the room, and the way it makes the floors and trim pop. It's also a great backdrop for my new artwork in the room. 

I'm a strong believer in personalizing the artwork in a person's home, so all of these photos are ones I've taken on our travels. I printed them as photo posters at Walgreens (during a 50% off sale) and glued them to blank canvases with Modpodge. What's more, I spent around $70 for five large pieces of artwork. It's so nice to look at the walls and see memories. :) By the way, I give absolutely all the credit for this idea to Pinterest - Ms. Ginger over at Literally Inspired is a smarty pants! I followed her exact instructions and couldn't be happier with the end result. 

And doesn't the TV mounted on the fireplace make the room look so much bigger? I must say that I'm not a huge fan of the concept - I normally can barely sit still long enough for a 30 minute rerun of Friends, but the space feels so much more open and inviting ......

What else did we add to the room, you ask? The bookshelves on either side of the fireplace are from Target. You can find them here

We also bought the area rug there (here), but these, my friends, were the most expensive items we bought. Everything else we already had or repurposed in some way. 

I couldn't be more proud if the room had spoken its first words. Wait a minute, I think it did. It said, "welcome home." :) 

Thanks for stopping by! Please let us know what you think ... we'd love to hear from you!  

I'm linking up to: 

The Shabby Nest

Create & Inspire Linky Party