Dreaming of a Kitchen Reno

Last week I told you that I’ve dreamed up an entire kitchen renovation, which stemmed from a leaky faucet on our kitchen sink. And dreaming is exactly what I’ve been up to. . .

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Ever since I started thinking about going white I’ve been itching to get the paint out and over haul the whole thing.

I’ve been reading tutorials on how to paint your kitchen,

How to paint your kitchen cabinets in 10 easy steps

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 and how to make your own countertops from concrete and recycled glass.

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As well as building custom drawer organizers, under the sink storage and vertical storage for baking sheets.

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You know, as well as new light fixtures, hardware and a backsplash. No biggie.

To say that we hope to accomplish this task soon would be a lie, in fact our greatest hope is to complete it in 2014 so I think slow and steady will win this race. We have plans to break the re-haul down into manageable chunks, the first of which is a trial run on the smallest piece of countertop between the stove and the door to the garage.

Here we go!

If you have a leaky faucet, you’re going to replace the kitchen sink. . .

We are back from my brother’s wedding weekend and I am just getting over a cold that had me out for a good part of this week. It’s always amazing to me how much a little cold can really take it out of you! The wedding was beautiful, classy and all around elegant affair and we couldn’t be more excited to welcome Elizabeth into our family.

When Phillip and I moved into this house, almost 2 years ago (where did the time go???) we knew that we were getting a house with a lot of character. If you own an old home, you know that sometimes ‘character’ really just means nothing ever works the way it’s supposed to.

Old Kitchen Sink

Let me introduce you to the kitchen sink. At first glance it looks pretty functional but if you take a closer look you’ll see that in fact the faucet leaks. Every time you use it. Annoying.

Leaky Faucet

So, like logical homeowners, we replaced a few seals and like most things in an old home, the problem still persisted. Typical. Around this same time, I noticed a beautiful white porcelain sink on Craig’s List that was in great shape and very reasonably priced.

‘If we’re going to replace the faucet, we might as well replace the sink while we’re at it.’ (I’m not a big fan of stainless.) FAMOUS. LAST. WORDS. You already know where this is going, don’t you??

New Kitchen Sink

So we bought the sink, brought it home and I immediately thought, ‘I can’t put my beautiful new sink on these ugly laminate countertops.’

Blue laminate countertops‘And if I’m going to trade out the countertops, I am for sure going to paint the kitchen cabinets while they’re off.’

Mismatched cabinet pulls‘If I’m already painting the cabinets, I want to go ahead and replace all this ugly, mis-matched hardware.’

Old Kitchen Hardware‘And if we do all that, we’ll have to put in a backsplash and get rid of this awkward, extra-tall countertop extension.’

High backsplash . . . and if you give a mouse a cookie, he’s going to want something to drink.

Sorry for the word vomit but, I’ve been dreaming and making plans and I’ll be back next week with more details!

 

SPS: Adding trim to the kitchen desk

That’s right another installment of the Small Project Series! The SPS are all those small things that still need to be done after a big project but you just lack the motivation to finish . . . in my case because I’m already dreaming about the next big project!

Up today is the built-in desk in my kitchen. At first glance I’m sure you’re thinking, ‘That’s looks awesome!’TFP Upholstery 17

But when you take a closer look you’ll see that we never added the trim and you can now view this huge gaping hole where the right side meets the wall. Yikes.

Adding Trim to Kitchen Desk

So last weekend I finally busted out the tape measure and cut three pieces of quarter round, 1 for the right side and 2 for where the back meets the wall.

(This was the first time I’d ever used a miter saw!)

Cutting TrimAs per usual, Phillip was gracious enough to do the hard part: nailing the trim into place! Since it is such a small space it was really hard to get in there with the nail gun much less get a decent picture of the process.

Nailing TrimWhen he was done I filled the holes and painted everything, here’s the finished product!

Kitchen Desk with TrimI know it may seem like much to you but every time I walk by and see trim instead of gaping hole, it makes my heart happy.

Desk with TrimAny small projects on the line-up for this weekend?

SPS: I finally fixed that hole next to the entryway bar

Remember that time we installed our custom counter top for the entryway bar?

Yeah. . . it’s a distant memory for me too. . .because it was in FEBRUARY!!

(March, April, May. . .)

7 months ago to be exact. (And really more than that since it actually went in before Christmas, I just blogged about it in February.)

TFP Kitchen Bar 9So hang on to your seats ladies and gentlemen [insert drumroll here] because I have finally patched that awkward rectangle on the kitchen wall!!

Finished Kitchen Bar - thefrontpoarch.com(Please ignore the blue dolly in the back ground, that’s another story for another day. . .)

Back to the awkward wall patch, the original counter stuck about 2″ further from the stone wall which made it really uncomfortable to sit at our new built-in benches. To fix the rectangle, I took the counter top off (we haven’t glued it down yet since I haven’t fixed the wall yet AND because it’s really hard to move refrigerators in and out of your kitchen with it in place. . . .again, a story for another day.)

Where was I??

I took the counter top off and sanded down the area so it would be as smooth as possible. Since the original counter was installed before the house was painted, the exposed area went all the way down to the sheet rock.

Fixing this hole. . . 6 months later - thefrontpoarch.comAfter sanding it got a good coat of primer and paint. . . .

Paint & Primer. . . and there you have it! Quick. Simple. And took so little time I regret 100% not just doing this when we installed the counter top.

Finished Kitchen Bar - thefrontpoarch.comI also took the opportunity to add a little touch up paint to some areas of the kitchen that are already showing wear and tear. We really love our high texture walls, but they do get nicked ALL the time. Behind the trash can is the worst, in less than a year it’s rubbed off an entire strip texture and the lid has left the wall grimy and generally dirty looking.

Trash Rubbing off PaintOh well, a new coat will do for now. Who knows, maybe I need a trash can guard. Anybody else had similar trouble?

 

Master Reno: How to Paint a Stripe

As a part of my Master Reno series, today I’m sharing a tutorial on How to Paint a Stripe.How to Paint a StripeLast fall I color blocked my dining room and I used a similar procedure for the stripe. The first step is to decide on the width of your stripe and where you want it placed. My stripe is 18″ wide and starts 20″ from the ceiling.

Start with a pencil and your tape measure and go around the room making small marks at 20″. (Sorry for the blurry photo, it’s hard to hold a tape measure AND take a photo!)

Measuring to paint a stripeThen go back around and mark 18″ down from your original mark. Using painter’s tape, go around and mark off your stripe area being sure to place the top piece above your 20″ mark and the bottom piece below your 38″ mark.

Tape off section for a stripe - thefrontpoarch.comI had a couple of long stretches and quite a few short stretches and I have to say, the shorter parts are so much easier to tape! Even when you’ve made good marks, it still seems like the long parts aren’t even! (In my house anyways!)

Taped off section for wall stripe - thefrontpoarch.comWith your paint of choice, start by cutting in the tape edges, just as you would around molding. Once the edges have been cut in, go back and roll the middle section with a small roller. For a consistent texture, I would recommend doing the entire second coat with a roller, being careful not to roll over your tape.

While the paint is still wet, remove the tape and touch up the edges with your brush as needed. Wait for it to dry and there you have it!

Painted Stripe from thefrontpoarch.com

How to Paint a StripeSpeaking of room renovations, have you been keeping up the play-by-play renovation that Mandy is doing over Vintage Revivals? I love seeing her thought processes come to life!

Master Reno: Hutch

When I hit the Mid-Century Furniture Jackpot a couple of weeks ago I knew that the 2-piece hutch was going to be my favorite piece. As we were purchase the furniture I noticed a small tear in the veneer and optimistically thought, oh I can easily fix that!Hutch LaminateWhat I didn’t realize was that the crack wasn’t just surface level, it went all the way through!

Hole in VeneerSo in lieu of trying to repair a section of the veneer we opted instead to create a new backing for the entire piece. We started with 1/8″ plywood and used the old backing as template to cut the new one.

Cutting Hutch Backing

It then got primed and painted coral, the same color as my headboard. The handy husband then re-attached it for me.Nailing Hutch Backing

And here’s the finished product!

Master Reno 2

Painted Hutch RenovationReading Nook - thefrontpoarch.comEver repaired veneer successfully??

Master Reno: Reveal

For a while now I’ve been working on renovating our master bedroom and I have to say, it’s been quite a challenge. This was the last room in the house that I’ve done because for many, many months I didn’t have any inspiration. I wanted some that felt warm and inviting without being too girly and that is where my greatest challenge came. A few weeks ago I stumbled upon navy and coral and I knew I was in love.

Enough of me talking . . . here’s the big reveal!

Coral & Navy Master Bedroom - thefrontpoarch.com

Master Bedroom Reveal - thefrontpoarch.comMr. & Mrs. Pillow from the frontpoarch.com

Our dresser got some custom artwork and a new charging station.

Master Bedroom Reno 1Master Bedroom Reno 2

Next to the closets I created a jewelry station.Master Bedroom Reno 3And in the other corner, a reading nook with a certain mid-century hutch.Master Reno 1Master Reno 2What’s behind all those pillows?

Coral Headboarch - thefrontpoarch.comThis beauty.Coral Headboarch 1 - thefrontpoarch.comMaster Reno 3

Just as a refresher, here’s what it looked like before. . .

TFP Master 1Here’s the after!

Master Bedroom Reveal - thefrontpoarch.com

 

DIY Geometric Wall

AKA The Rock Wall

Last week I shared with you my freshly painted hallway and as promised I’m back with the tutorial!

Hallway Reveal 14As I mentioned in the reveal, the old hallway was Boring with a capitol B! I wouldn’t describe myself is wacky and I lean heavily toward a  traditional, mid-century style with a few modern twists. However one day I was going down the hall and I thought to myself, ‘I wonder what would happen if I got a paint pen and just drew all over the walls.’

And then I scrapped the idea. Too out of my comfort zone.

Then I dreamed of large white and gray stripes. . . .

. . . .no, I really want to draw on the wall.

No, it won’t look very good and I’ll end up hating it and starting over.

Polka dots! What about polka dots?? No, I’ll hate that more.

So I took the plunge, ordered this paint pen and set to work. If you want to make a ‘rock wall’ of you own you don’t necessarily need a paint pen, I used a small paint brush for touch up and that worked as well if not better than the pen. I also chose this pen because it’s refillable which meant that I could use paint I already had on had.

Hallway Tutorial 7

First things first, you need a  blank canvas.

Hallway Tutorial 1

Ahh. . . much better.

Start by drawing a single shape of your choosing, my first shaped was probably 3″ x 2″. From there, draw lines off of the first shape to create other shapes. This part can be as big as your imagination so dream big! I chose to keep mine shapes pretty simple but it’s totally up to you.

Hallway Tutorial 4You’ll be surprised at how quickly a few lines can fill a space.

Hallway Tutorial 8

To create uniform look I would suggest connecting the points of each shape. I chose instead to try and NOT connect to the points which gave me a more abstract look. Make sense?

Remember this a wacky process so the messier and more irregular the better!Hallway Tutorial 3

*Warning* if you try to paint an entire wall in one day you will loose your mind!

I found that I worked better when I painted shapes across rather than up or down so I worked in strips, starting at eye level. . . .
Hallway Tutorial 6. . . . .and then worked my way down.

Hallway Tutorial 2The edges can be a bit tricky, my advice is just to get as close as possible and then switch to your paint brush to finish the rest.
Hallway Tutorial 5

After a few weeks, I had finally painted everything up to eye level and the I stepped back and thought, I really like this! (You could easily complete this project in a few days but my work schedule was super crazy so that’s why it took me several weeks.)I was originally going to go all the way to the ceiling but then I remembered some extra paint I had in the garage and the rest is history!

Hallway Reveal 15

Hallway Reveal 3Have you ever chosen something wacky for your home and ended up love it?

 

DIY Screen Door Art

Today I have a super fun project to share with you, it’s simple and makes a BIG impact!DIY Pantry Door Art @ thefrontpoarch.com

A few months ago I shared with you how we swapped my pantry for this lovely screen door, which recently got a new coat of paint. Since then, I’ve been dreaming about adding some custom art to it so last week I whipped out my needle and yarn and set to work. Want to make some screen door art of your own??

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Yarn, in a color of your choice
  • Large sewing needle
  • Tape, I used painters tape because it’s what I had on hand
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun
  • Optional: needle threader
  • Optional: silver Sharpie

Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 1

Start by deciding on what you want your yarn art to say. Since my pantry is adjacent to my eat-in kitchen table, I chose Let’s Eat. Next you’ll want to think about the style and placement of your wording. I chose to use to different ‘fonts’ but wanted the words to be roughly the same width. To accomplish this, I gave my lettering a 2″ buffer on each side and then marked off 2 horizontal lines so that I could keep the text mostly level.

*If you use painters tape like I did, it probably won’t have enough sticky to stay on the entire time. I used my tape as more of a guideline to get started and then free handed it from there.Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 2

Thread your needle (I used a needle threader to help me since the yarn is so thick) and tie a strong knot in the end of your yarn. I found that a yard of yarn is about the right amount to work with (when you double it over it will be about 18″) because as you sew in and out of the screen the yarn closest to the needle will begin to fray. In other words, your yarn will likely fray before you can use the entire length of it.

Your first ‘stitch’ needs to start on the back side of your screen, meaning that you’ll pull in through to the front. This will allow you to ‘hide’ the knot on the back.Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 3

I recommend starting with your first letter, for me that was L. The first ‘font’ I chose was a block font so I started with the outer layer and then worked my way in, using the ‘rows’ of yarn to create a block effect.

Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 14

You may find that the tiny squares that make up your screen aren’t exactly what we would call level. Don’t be discouraged by this. Just do the best you can and know that in order for a letter to be straight, you might have to jump from row to row.

Once you’ve finished your fist letter I would suggest stitching your letter last letter, the one that will be furthest to the right. This way you will have 2 ‘bookends’ and will be able to fit your remaining letters in between. It also ensures that you won’t make your letters too big and run out of room at the end.

Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 5

It took me about an hour to complete the ‘Let’s’ portion and then I moved on to ‘Eat’.

See all those knots hanging over and looking tacky? Don’t worry, we’ll fix those in a little bit.

Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 6

Since I chose a scripted ‘font’ for the word Eat I chose to free hand a template onto the screen with a silver sharpie. This made the stitching process a lot quicker since I wasn’t having to stop and figure out what direction I needed to go next.
Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 7

In less than 30 minutes, this baby was done.Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 8

Now, back to the ugly knots. Heat your hot glue gun up and move to the back side of your screen.Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 9You want to place a small drop of hot glue on the actual knot of each piece of yarn. Immediately press the knot, glue side down, back in the direction of the yarn. This will keep the knot in place and ensure it isn’t visible form the front. Once all your knots have been glued, go back and trim the extra yarn.

This step will make a HUGE difference! Here are a few before and after shots.

Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 10

See what a difference it makes?Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 11

Finally, step back and admire your handy work, you’ve just created custom art for your screen door!Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 12

Pantry Door Art thefrontpoarch.com 13

Does your screen door have to be on your pantry to create custom art? No! You could easily do this on an exterior screen door with a welcome message.

DIY Pantry Door Art @ thefrontpoarch.com

 

A year in the making – 1 Year Blogiversary

365 days ago, a dream of mine became a reality.TFP Sign

It started probably a year before that when I stumbled across a blog called House of Hepworths. Who even knew DIY blogs existed? It was the first one I’d ever heard of and I was instantly infatuated with Alison and her amazing DIY skills. I was hooked. I read every post she’d ever written and waited anxiously for new posts to be published (yeah. . . I was kind of a creeper). I began to dream and really think, I could do that!

TFP 945 Front Poarch

At the time we lived in a tiny 2-bedroom duplex whose owner barely let us install a ceiling fan (it had NO ceiling fans. . . in the middle of west Texas. . . . yeah, not smart) so I knew a DIY blog was out of the question as long as we lived there. Time went on and I began to follow other blogs like I Heart Organizing and Primitive and Proper and as the DIY bug grew within me and I worked on small projects around our home.

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In January of 2012 this all changed when, through a series of God sized events, we bought our first home. I was ECSTATIC. Long before we moved my head began to spin with renovation ideas, paint colors and flooring options. (Side Note: I didn’t join Pinterest for a long time because my friend Katie told me it was like my brain on steroids. She was right.) I immediately knew the time had come to launch my very own blog, and that my friends is how it all began.

I was so excited I had probably 2-3 posts written before we moved. That’s right, in two weeks time I packed our entire house, we cleaned our new house, did all the techy stuff that goes along with starting a blog and I wrote several posts. Oh yeah, and we both worked a full time job. Needless to say, we were pumped about this dream coming true.

TFP 626-2

Over the past year we’ve learned a lot. A LOT. We’ve learned about working together and communication. We’ve learned that if you give a mouse a cookie, he’s going to want something to drink. We’ve learned that I am a mouse. . . .and I want a cookie. We’ve learned that I have big dreams and can always see the final product where as Phillip never sees the final product and often says things to me like,

“You aren’t finished with that project. . . are you?”

“You want to paint what?”

“Those things don’t match.”

Yet he always loves the result. It’s been an entertaining year of growth and discovery.

TFP House Numbers 5

I’ve learned 3 things about myself over the past 12 months;

  • I love to dream up big projects and see them through to completion.
  • I love writing about what I’ve done. I do the staging, shooting and editing. . . .so that I can write.
  • I love that there are people out there whom I’ve never met who actually read the things I write. It never ceases to amaze me.

So to you, faithful reader, thank you. Thank you for reading, dreaming and learning with me. You are the reason that I continue to write so thanks for the encouragement and love.

Speaking of love . . . . wouldn’t you just LOVE to win a new purse?? I thought so.

Daily Tote Giveaway - thefrontpoarch.com

Without further adieu, the winner is. . . .Heather Jernigan!

Heather be sure to check your email for prize details.

 

Here’s to many, many more DIYing years to come!