Sunday, September 6, 2015

IKEA coffee table and our new jute rug

Hey guys,
today I would like to share our Ikea coffee table makeover with you. Like I told you my husband was holding on to this with his dear life :) He had purchased the table in Germany and if I had to make a psychological analysis I would say that he is clinging on to it as it was part of the first pieces of furniture he bought for his very own first apartment and it reminds him of his life as a bachelor :) Of course he does not admit that my assumptions are true. I've heard some smart people say marriage is all about compromises, so I caved and let him keep his precious coffee table if he would let me put my touch on it. When it comes to color and design in our home he completely trusts my style and taste so he let me have artistic freedom :)
Here is a before picture

And another one of it in our living room. Personally I would have liked to get a coffee table that is a little wider and lower to fill out the space better.
This is the after picture after we ripped out the carpet and painted the walls (see Sitting Room Makeover Post).

I sanded down the top of the table to bring out the gorgeous wood (I believe it's pine?) Not sure if I was imagining things, but the sawdust smelled just like my uncle's carpenter shop in Germany. I wonder if "German pine" smells different or something :) I have sanded plenty different types of wood while in the States and I have to say none of them had THAT scent... call me crazy... 
I decided on a light whitewash on top to show the beautiful grain of the wood. I  only did two layers to make sure it would not be too overwhelming. Here's a picture where you can see the slight difference. The wood is already very light so it is not a huge difference. 

This picture was after one layer of whitewash. I did one more just to deepen it a little bit and sealed it with wax. As for the bottom I was wanting to do a whitewash as well over the darker wood but ended up painting it solid white in order for the top to be the focal point.

It was a lot of work to paint all six cubbies of the table and I am so glad to be done with it :) 

yay, finally back in the living room on our brand new jute rug. I was hesitant to put a rug anywhere downstairs again after our cat had messed up our carpet which was the main reason we got rid of it. These sisal/jute rugs have a very strong "natural/earthy" smell as their made from plants so sure enough my fears where not without reason and I caught my cat getting in position to make it its new bathroom. I was able to interfere just in time to stop a catastrophe about to happen (once it's done there is never a way to entirely get the smell out). My husband had the brilliant idea to put his food bowl on top of the rug for a while. It worked!! I was so happy as I was not ready to say goodbye to the rug and wasted money already :) 

I'm pretty happy with the new changes in our sitting room and enjoy hanging out there even more now. You have to get yourself a little sanctuary in your house where you feel most comfortable, whether it is a little sitting area by a window, your bedroom or wherever you feel like you can just relax for a second and take a break :) Hope you enjoyed, and I'm leaving you with one last picture of the entire room and am off to less enjoyable things than my blog (business calculus homework, yikes!)

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Sitting Room Makeover

Good Evening everyone,

Glad you are taking the time to stop by on my blog once again. Sorry I haven been MIA, but during the semester I am always "in the zone" and most of my time goes into getting assignments done and studying. I do try to find a balance between my husband, my fur babies, staying fit and getting some projects done. I do still have a lot of projects in and around our house I am planning on blogging about so stay tuned. Also if there is something you would like me to specofically blog about shot me a message! I am also thinking about branching out into healthy lifestyle posts. Anyway I'm getting a little off topic. So like the heading suggests this post is about our sitting room. Whenever my family from Germany visits they always ask if we really use our "sitting room" at all and I can honestly say we do! I love having my morning coffee sitting on the couch enjoying the silence of the morning. When the weather is bad it's the perfect hangout space to just have tea and talk and of course on the rare occasion that it gets "colder" here in San Antonio the fireplace does help make it cozier. Like everything else in the house when we moved in, the sitting room was a beige as well. Of course knowing me you can probably guess what color I wanted to paint it? Exactly! White! I am all about the true shabby look and just feel you will get tired of any other color. I know gray is all the hype right now, but to me it feels so much colder than white. Call me weird :) 
Anyway, you might have seen the blog post about our kitchen and the wall color? My husband was trying to convince me that it would look more like one room if that color would just flow from the kitchen into the sitting room. So as he got all "interior decorator" on me I gave in :) who could say no to them puppy brown eyes of his. Plus he always helps me paint (ok yes he does most the hard work I do the edges with the little edger thing) so I knew if I didn't like it, I could always repaint. 
So here is a before picture with carpet and all. This was taken during Christmas time. Don't want you to think my house has lights up all year long :) 

Though people tell me they do also like the before, I just feel like it is way too much beige EVERYWHERE! 
I wanted it to be a little more "fresh" looking. Just lighter, less dark. So like I said, I have in to my husbands wish and we went with the Winter Fresh Color on the walls which I actually love with the new flooring. So here's a picture of the after: 

I do still want to change out the coffee table, but I feels like I have so many other projects to finish and so our own furniture always has to wait the longest. Seem like our kitty is mighty comfortable in the new space as well :) I will try and get up a more recent picture of the room. Still I hope you can see a difference and more importantly an improvement. 
Before I forget, not sure if you noticed, but I also painted and stained the ceiling fan. Now you all know the blades are usually not real wood, so here's a before 

Jip, don't you hate that gold? So I painted it off white and used General Finishes Java Gel Stain on the blades which made the "wood grain" still show through :) 

Here's a close up of the blade so you can see it a little better

Pretty, right? That's so awesome about this stain, you can use it on laminate and make something look like a thousand bucks. That's it from me, hope you liked it and feel free to ask questions :)

Have a great weekend everybody! 


Monday, January 26, 2015

Kitchen Makeover

When our realtor submitted our offer for our house here in San Antonio, Texas, one of the requirements I insisted on, was for the sellers to paint the walls back to neutral colors as their paint choices were horrific. Every bedroom had an "accent wall" in a bright orange. The kitchen a super dark red with a matching red storage shed in the yard. Unfortunately our realtor oversaw that they had drawn a line through that clause when the contract came back. When I stopped by for inspection day I was shocked to still see all the crazy colors, yet the family had already shipped all their belongings and where about to hit the road the next morning after signing. I am all about not accepting something you did not agree upon (sorry, but I won't get run over anymore, been playing nice for way too long). Since it was the other realtor's fault to not communicate this change in contract more clearly to ours his agency agreed to give us a check of $300. I was like, WHAT? That man must have never held a roller in his hands :) I listed him ALL the supplies I was going to need and how much it would be if I have to hire somebody for the staircase. I emphasized how expensive paint is (not that I was going to buy any designer brand named paint) but I was wanting to make a point. I have worked in customer service long enough to know, if you are persistent enough you get what you want :) Not sure why exactly I am elaborating on this, I guess my point is that you should not settle with something you did not want/ask for and be walked all over. My husband is the complete opposite :) 

Any way, long story short we had to paint ourselves :) In 95 degree heat as the AC was not working :) yikes! we did not even have our furniture shipped to us yet, so please excuse the mess in the kitchen in the before pictures, ok??  

How do you likey? Honey-oak cabinets, nice white appliances, and that very bright, oh so friendly wall color... NOT...

Pretty huh? yes, you guessed it, it needed to go! We found a nice beach cottage color for the walls (which is now discontinued, that you very much, Home Depot) So just in case, remember to always paint a piece of paper for later on so you can get the color matched if they do the same to you...

After living in the house for a couple months and much research I finally brought myself to tackle the kitchen cabinets. I decided to use the kitchen transformation Rostoleum kit. It was easy to use, but the top coat that comes with it was not compatible with the paint in my opinion. Always remember: no oil-based finishes over latex/chalk-paint! The reason? It WILL yellow! And so now I will have to hopefully soon redo or at least touch up a lot of it. 

It was not until two years later that we decided to rip out the carpet and lay down laminate flooring. I do not know how we lived without them as our boxer and cat are not exactly the cleanest family members :) 

So I guess, after everything, new flooring, appliances and paint we got to the following results.

As for the kitchen we did not update any counter tops or backsplash since we move around a lot and will not stay in this home forever. Yet the floors will definitely something future renters/owners will appreciate. They HIDE everything, which is why I wanted grey instead of dark flooring :) This girl ain't to keen on cleaning... woops there, I said it. 

Hope you enjoyed this post and please sign up for the email blog updates so you won't miss a thing! There will be a couple more posts about makeover projects in our house that I will share with you. 

Have a great week! I'm off to go do my Microeconomics, Business Math and Business Communication homework, yay! 


Friday, January 9, 2015

It's been a long journey

My name is Daniela, I'm 26 years old and I live in San Antonio, Texas with my husband and our two fur babies, Diego and Droopy. I am originally from Amberg, Bavaria/Germany and moved to the US about 3 years ago.
My passion for refinishing furniture started in 2010. I fell entirely in love with the white furniture-style that everybody called shabby-chic. It originally came from Scandinavia as they do not get a lot of sunlight. In order to not get depressed they started painting everything they had white. Whether it was the walls, floors, or furniture. This pic is what I have in mind when I think of true shabby-chic:
pic from google images

It didn't take long and I started frequenting flea markets and looked for furniture I could turn into timeless treasures, making our home a little more like the pictures I so admired. At the time we still lived in Kaiserslautern, Germany, which is not too far to the French border which meant loooots of French goodies at great prices. It was not until I got to the States that I got into redoing pieces by adding a little bit of color as I felt it was more what people were looking for instead of white :). In my home I am still true to the lighter/white colors. I wish it was all the fresh white you see in this picture, but I do like the antiqued white and distressed look, so you will see a lot of that as well. 

My first pieces looked like this:

Most of these items I still own as you do not want to be selling your first babies :) 

I have not posted anything on this blog since 2012 but am hoping to be able to write more as I do not want to write REALLY long facebook posts on my page but yet want to share more information about my passion and also give product reviews.

If you have not already liked us on Facebook, here's a link to the page where I post current projects and pieces that are for sale.

I hope you will enjoy my blog and hopefully get inspired for your own projects :)  

Have a great weekend!