Front Room Reveal Part Two!

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about reclaiming our front room after using it to store everything and anything during our addition/renovation. Part of the process was revamping and styling an antique hutch that had belonged to my husband’s grandmother. I was very pleased with the results. Of course I did not stop there. I decided to keep going. I ended that post with a promise to revisit the front room when I was finished redecorating.

Like with the china cabinet, I wanted to update the mantle and built-in shelves. It had been the same style for a long while and I was ready for a change. Of course, as anyone knows who has done remodeling, when it is nearing the end, so too are the funds required to make more changes. With a very tight budget I took the challenge. First, I shopped my house, then I hit the road to find some bargains!

What we were using our front room for during the addition/renovation.

Starting to put it all back together.

The reimagined shelves and mantle unit.

I moved the large urns from the top of the mantle to the shelf. These urns were a Pottery Barn purchase. I make it a rule to never pay full price for anything I buy at Pottery Barn. I check Pottery Barn clearance items regularly. It took two years, but these urns finally went on sale. Lucky for me, our mantle and shelves are wider than most. Because of this, I was able to purchase the larger urns which happened to be an additional twenty percent off!

To replace the urns, I moved the candlesticks from the floor in front of the fireplace, to the top of the mantle. The candle sticks were also a Pottery Barn purchase. I found these a few years ago on a reduced price shelf. I picked them up (very heavy solid pieces) and could not believe the price. I was not the only one who thought so. When I got to the register the sales person looked at me and said, “Wow, these are a great price at eighteen dollars a piece”!

I now needed something that would balance out the large urns. I hunted around the house trying a myriad of items. Everything I tried was dwarfed by the urns. It was time to shop!

When I shop for bargains, the first thing I do is change my mindset. I start perusing the aisles looking in every section. I open my mind and look at the color, shape and size of an item rather than what is was meant to be used for. I’ll give you an example of what I mean. Every time I go shopping, I pass the pet area and think, wouldn’t a dog bed make a perfect floor pillow. I know your laughing, but why not? They are made for the floor, come in a variety of shapes and colors and are very comfortable ( if my kids were younger I would totally use this idea). Best of all, the price is probably a lot less than an actual floor pillow. Do me a favor, next time you are shopping check out the pet section and see what I mean.

Back to shopping! First stop, Good Will. They had some very nice items, but nothing large enough. Next, Home Goods. This is a great place to think outside the box. They have a wide variety of items to choose from. When I shop, I walk around and touch things, often picking them up and imagining it in my space. I was doing just that, when I found a large outdoor tray. It was made of woven rattan with melamine shell on the inside. The design of the melamine was beautiful. The size and color were right and it did not look like an outdoor tray. It looked like a high end piece of décor. The cost was just $15 each. I picked up two and headed home to try them.

Woven rattan base.

Melamine shell inside.

I love it! Look how it picks up the color in the little girl’s hat in my Mary Cassatt print (I purchased the print for a dollar at a rummage sale and had it framed at Michael’s ).

Two more bargains. First, the large crock. I found this on the side of the road in our neighborhood. I asked the neighbor if they were throwing it away. The answer was yes! I immediately picked up this very heavy piece and toted it home. So worth it!

The clock which is actually two pieces. The lantern I found at Good Will for five dollars and the clock was purchased at the At Home store in Henrietta N.Y, for $10. I originally had the lantern on the sofa table. It looked okay, but it needed something else. I thought of a candle, but the lantern was too narrow. I kept looking and that is when I saw the clock. It fit perfectly. The only thing I had to do was paint the clock with a gray wash paint to tone down the gold.

See how narrow it is.

Just a touch of gray wash toned it right down.

I know I showed the hutch in a post a couple weeks ago, but I wanted to show you how I added light. I loved the way the hutch turned out, but it was dark inside the shelves and made it difficult to see the items. I looked at adding lighting, but you would have to cut the hutch to install and that was not an option. Someone mentioned puck lighting to me. I researched it and it seemed like the right answer. I ordered a pack of six black puck lights.

The pucks run on three AA batteries and come with a remote to turn them on and off.

The pucks have three different light settings.

How cool is that!

I accomplished everything I wanted too. Put the room back together and gave it a refresh at the same time!

Starting To Put The Outside Back Together!

When they started the addition/renovation, I knew the inside of the house would be turned upside down, but never considered what would happen to the outside. I guess I should have picked up on how it was going to get torn up when my contractor advised me to move any plants and bushes I wanted to save from the sides and back of our house. I am very grateful for that tip. I was able to save everything!

It did get pretty messy but things are now looking up. They are coming to grade (making sure the slope of yard drains away from your house). He will also roll the lawn and fill in areas that were trashed during construction. The bright side of all of this is we get to redesign our landscaping. We are also changing the direction of the walkway leading from the front of our house to the driveway. Something I have wanted to do forever!

The right side of the house, where all the large trucks accessed the backyard.

The left side of the house, where the egress window was relocated. We also had drainage issues that had to be addressed. They had to rip up our pipes because tree roots clogged it up. This is what probably caused our flooded basement. But that’s another story for another time. Lucky for us, they only had to dig to the front of the house and not to the road. Which would have been right through my garden.

The backyard was also torn up from all the trucks.

There used to be a sliding door here. We removed the door and replaced it with a window. It makes the perfect niche for a garden. I am an amateur at best, so I will definitely be reaching out for garden ideas.

The front stoop was damaged when the new roof was put on. This is something else on the list of things to do!

The walkway we want to move. I want to scoot it over about one to two feet to the right. It will give me more room for landscaping.

Of course I was up before anyone else and started to move the pavers by myself. I managed to move two on my own and flip four more. When one also most dropped on my foot, I decided to wait for help.

Here is a question for all my gardeners out there. When the new walkway is moved, I would love to make the dwarf lilac bush on the right side of the steps the center of my new landscape. Have any of you moved a mature bush before? If so, did it survive?

My poor front garden. I did nothing to it last year during construction and have not gotten to it yet this year. Has anyone else’s garden exploded with new growth? I am not sure if it has anything to do with the weather or that I did nothing to it last year.

I am going to share my new mantra! Take it slow. Everything does not have to be done at once! I hope this works. I know myself and my tendency to work until everything is done. But, after this strange year, I want to stop and smell the roses as they say!

Take it slow, everything does not have to be done at once!

Take it slow, everything does not have to be done at once!

Take it slow, everything does not have to be done at once!

Hopefully, if I see it enough it will sink in!

If you have gardening tips to share, leave a comment for me. I would love to hear from you!

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China Cabinet Makeover and Styling!

Did you ever avoid something hoping it would go away? That is how I felt about my front room. During our addition/renovation it was a dumping ground for anything and everything. We really had no choice. It was one of the only rooms not touched by the renovation. Given that, we now have ample room to store everything. I had no excuses left. Time to face the music!

I started by clearing away items that did not belong . I made three piles keep, give away or toss. It was a great feeling to start getting things in order! After everything was cleared out. It was time for a thorough cleaning. I wiped walls, cleaned windows, took the drapes down to have cleaned, and used my Little Green Machine upholstery cleaner on the sofa. The room was looking great. Next up, I pulled everything off the shelves and inside the cabinets for a good dusting. When I was finished, I looked at everything I had taken out and my mind started to wander into its “lets try that mode”. Usually, not a good sign! If I was not me, I would have been done. Just put everything back on the shelves and call it a day. But, that is not how I roll. I wanted to change things up. Everything was already out. What better time than now. Or, I could have read a book, had a glass of wine or dare I say relax. Ha, ha, who am I kidding!

This piece was my husband’s grandmother’s. I like it, but it has always been hard to style. The bubbled glass makes it almost impossible to see anything inside.

I told you my mind was wandering. Deciding to take the doors off had nothing to do with my husband (remember it was his grandmother’s) not being home. Or did it?

What a difference a door (coming off) makes! First, it looks less formal. Second, you can see what is inside.

I could not wait to style it. Oh the possibilities!

I had no intention of painting or changing the integrity of the piece, but the space where the hinges had been had to be addressed. To remedy this problem, I used acrylic paints to camouflage the area.

This pitcher was actually my husband’s grandmother’s also. I thought it apropos to put it front and center!

Next, came pieces from Pottery Barn. The indigo color pulls out the same in the pitcher!

I thought there was too much blue vertically, so I moved them horizontally. The shelf that is bothering people who like symmetry (like me) did get adjusted. I did not notice it until the final picture.

I continued to get my inspiration from the pitcher. I hunted around the house for green and found this bowl from Pottery Barn.

I pulled this from my family room. I thought the green accent and wood tones would work perfectly.

I really liked where this was going. The only issue I had, was running out of decorative pieces.

I started to scour the whole house when I came upon Melamine plates from Pottery Barn (I do love my Pottery Barn). I was using them as wall art.

That was the answer. You can’t even tell it is melamine.

This was the first time I was able to fully display items and see them. Love it!

I finished the look with the mother and child statue and two vases.

Done you say? Not! My wandering mind did not stop there.

I also want to revamp the mantle and adjoining shelves.

From past experience. This is going to take awhile. I will keep you posted on the progress.

Good Will Items Transformed!

A few weeks ago, I tried a faux cement treatment using chalk paint. I used items I purchased at Good Will and was blown away with the results. It not only took outdated items and made them relevant, it transformed them into something beautiful! After that success, I found myself looking around my house for more items to use the technique on. At that point I knew I had better get to Good Will. Not only to find more pieces but to keep me from raiding my house.

My Good Will run brought me a pitcher and four glass bottles with detailed etching.

My first project was the pitcher. I had purchased Iron Orchid Designs letter stamps from the Purple Painted Lady and was excited to try them!

I thought of stamping the pitcher using an ink pad, but went with DAS modeling clay instead.

The clay is very pliable and easy to roll out. As you can see, I used the bottle from the Waverly Chalk Paint as a rolling pin.

I was shopping in Home Goods looking around for inspiration for the sign. I came across pieces done by the artist Rae Dunn. I love her stuff. It is simplistic and right to the point. An example: she has plates with the words, eat, savor, enjoy. I wanted to use the same simplistic approach on the pitcher. I thought about a lot of options, but settled on the word “POUR”. Simple and straight to the point!

I used Gorilla Glue to adhere it to the pitcher.

I was able to move it around to center it before the glue dried.

I waited 24 hours for the clay to dry. Then put on the first coat.

I applied a second coat and let it dry over night.

Next I painted on Waverly White Wax and wiped it off with a paper towel. I was very pleased with the results. The sign was sticking up a little so I sanded it. I really liked how it was looking, so I kept going. Sometimes when you try and fix something it turns out really cool!

Onto the bottles. Each one had an an interesting result.

I wanted to see what black chalk paint looked like using the cement technique. I mixed Annie Sloan Athenian Black Chalk Paint with baking soda.

It went on thicker than the Waverly Chalk paint. I liked the texture it created so I did not water it down.

I couldn’t wait to put the Waverly White Wax on. Just imagine how it will look with that texture!

Love, Love Love this! I will definitely do this again.

Again, I was excited to see how the white wax picked up the etchings in the glass.

Unfortunately, I did not get the progress of these pieces. I started with faux cement technique using Waverly Mineral Chalk Paint mixed with baking soda. I then used Waverly White Wax. It looked good, but the etchings were not as prominent as I had wanted. To enhance the detailing, I wiped on Annie Sloan Black Wax. Immediately everything popped!

For this piece, I used the Waverly Mineral Chalk Paint and baking soda mixture.

Once the Waverly White Wax was added, the raised detailing was enhanced. The texture feels amazing!

These candle holders didn’t get away from my perusing eye as I was scanning my house. Although, what was I thinking with the red!

I used the Waverly Chalk Paint in Mineral and baking soda mixture on both of them.

I added Waverly White Wax to both. But, like the bottle, it did not bring out the details.

To help highlight the areas. I used Annie Sloan Black Wax.

This is how they looked after the black wax. The color is gorgeous the light and dark grays give it depth!

The dark and white wax worked together to make these candle holders into something special!

I made another trip to Good Will and found even more great items!

I plan on using the Iron Orchid Crockery Stamps on these items. Unfortunately, the stamps are not available until the end of May. If you are looking for Iron Orchid Designs items, The Purple Painted Lady in Macedon N.Y sells them!

I will be selling all of these items and more at the Purple Painted Lady Festival September 18th and 19th!

Pantry Reveal!

My pantry is done! I have to say it was quite an ordeal. Not because of the work involved. It was the opinions of everyone in the household. The pantry has been a dream of mine for a long time. I wanted it be functional and pretty, but the males in the house did not seem to understand the pretty part!

The best creative scenario for me is when I am alone. I can think clearly, adjust and work things through. With the pantry being in the hub of the home (the kitchen), that is not how it played out. During the entire process of putting the pantry together, there were questions, questions and more questions. My son asked me if he could keep his cereal in the box so he tell which cereal it was. I told him I would cut the name from the box (Home Edit trick) and tuck it in the back of container so he would know which cereal it was (although I think you can tell the difference between Frosted Flakes and Cheerios). My mother-in-law would ask me about where I was trying out spots for different items. This happened several times with several different items. Every time, I would tell her that I did not know, because I was working through the process. Things have also been moved. My husband moved the toaster next to the Keurig and smoothie maker. This space is meant to be a coffee bar area. The toaster makes it too tight. But we compromised. I moved it from the coffee bar to a more accessible area. It became apparent to me that I would have to finish the rest when everyone was not there. I worked last night after everyone went to bed and this morning when everyone was asleep. I was finally able to complete the pantry at my own pace without any questions!

While I was working in the pantry I did ask myself a question. Was I being unfair to the males in my family for not being excited over a well organized and pretty pantry? What do you think? I would love to hear other opinions.

My pretty pantry! Everything is categorized. First shelf baking , second is canned goods and dinner items, bottom is for breakfast, snacks and treats.

I am glad I went with the white lettering instead of black.

I honestly think taking everything out of the packaging gives you more room. Using containers and being able to stack them on top of one another is also a plus.

The solution to my son’s dilemma… I cut the name of the crackers off the box and put it in the back of the container. I did the same thing with chocolate chips except I cut out the Toll House Cookie recipe.

When we were planning the pantry, I asked them to put in an outlet because I knew I wanted a coffee bar in the pantry.

This is the spot for the Keurig and smoothie maker. There really wasn’t enough room for the toaster. I did however find a more convenient spot with room for bagels and bread right next to it.

I now have room to store all my entertaining items. Extra plates, glassware and platters.

Having the pantry will cause a domino effect for storage in the house. By moving the entertaining serve-ware to the pantry, it will free up storage down in the basement. We can also move extra linens to the basement closet to give us more room in the linen closet and be better organized upstairs too. Yeah!

Don’t tell the men in my family, but the refrigerator is next!

New Pantry! How To Organize?

Like most people, I have never had enough storage in my kitchen. Unlike most people, I have dreams of the perfect pantry. I have held dinner parties in my mind’s pantry with Ina Garten, Martha Stewart and recently Clea Shearer and Joanna Teplin of “The Home Edit”. We dined, laughed and played games of “How Fast Can You Find An Item Stored In The Pantry”. Of course, Martha always won!

My dream has finally come true! Not the part about dining with all my heroes, but having a pantry! In our new addition /renovation, we managed to fit a pantry into the design. It is more space than I had ever had for storage in my entire adult life. Before, there was no rhyme or reason to how I stored things. I just put them where ever they would fit. With this new space, I want to organize it with a place for everything. The strategy being, it will be returned to said spot every time! When the time came to start organizing, I realized I had no idea where to begin. Where should I put canned goods, dry goods, paper goods, entertaining items, seasonal etc. etc.? After I sat down and did some deep breathing with a glass of wine, I remembered seeing a show on Netflix called the “The Home Edit”. The duo, Clea Shearer and Joanna Teplin, are organizing guru’s. They travel all over helping people take control of their homes. Lucky for me, one of their specialties is organizing pantries! They also wrote a book about what they do “The Home Edit”. I ordered the book and it did not disappoint. It had great ideas on organizing and guidelines to follow. Yeah!

The book that will help me organize my new pantry!

Here is a picture of one of the pantries they have done. It gives me chills!

As far as the design of the pantry I knew I wanted a lot of space on the top shelf to house all my extra dishes, glasses, platters used for entertaining. I also wanted enough space from the bottom shelf to the floor for paper products, water, and back up supplies. Look at all that space. I will never again run out of paper towels!

I had asked for an outlet in the pantry so I could have a coffee station. We ran into a little problem. The outlet for the coffee maker is below the shelf and the plug will not reach. We will have to drill a hole through the shelf and feed the plug through. I actually think this change will be better. It will give us more room!

We added a brace in the middle of the shelves when my husband saw everything I wanted to put on the top shelf.

Just one more coat of paint and the shelves are finished!

My coffee bar! We still have to drill a hole for the plug. I also want to get hooks to hang the coffee cups and storage to hold the Keurig coffee pods.

This is why we needed a brace for the shelves. Believe it or not there is more!

My budget for new storage containers is limited, so I have been looking for deals. I got the larger basket at Goodwill and the three smaller ones at Target. I will be heading back to Goodwill this weekend. I always see glass containers there and hope to come home with some!

Next week… another pantry update, maybe even a reveal!


The key to not feeling overwhelmed for me is to keep moving. It’s when I stand still that things start to close in on me. We have been so busy and surrounded by chaos for so long, I forgot what its like to just be quiet. If I really think about what has happened in the last year and a half, I start to wonder how I was able to push through. The global pandemic that took us out of the classroom .The addition/renovation that we planned in order for my mother-in-law to move in. The construction finally starting, only to find out I am extremely allergic to dry wall dust. The solution was to live in a tent in our backyard for months. My mother-in-law becoming ill and having to move in with us before everything was finished. My husband and I struggling to finish her area so she would be comfortable. Returning back to the classroom excited, but also afraid.

I know I am not the only person who has felt overwhelmed, but I can only speak for myself. I believe I was able to push through because I learned from one of the strongest women I knew. My mother! She faced a lot of difficulties in her life, but got up every morning and did what had to be done. If I am a little bit like her I am grateful! I also have an amazing husband who was there every step of the way. We have been married for twenty-eight years and have had many challenges (which included sleeping outside in the tent with me for months). We tackle them together and in the end, come out stronger! My boys, every time I look at them they remind me of what is important in life. Of course my friends too. We stayed in touch during the shut down via Zoom and socially distance coffees. We were able to talk freely about our struggles and how we were coping. Mostly, we laughed and I believe grew closer. This post was supposed to be about my new pantry, but I have been thinking about this a lot lately and wanted to thank the people who helped me through.

I am so blessed to have so many wonderful people in my life. I appreciate and love all of them. My mother-in-law included! She has recovered nicely and is acclimating herself to the new space and being part of our everyday lives.

Next week will be all about the long awaited pantry!

I’ve Been Gobsmacked!

I heard the word “Gobsmacked” on a television show the other night. I didn’t know the meaning, so I Googled it. It is an informal British word which means surprised, astounded, thunderstruck! When I decided to write about a new technique I was trying, Gobsmacked was the perfect word to use in the post. Plus I love the word and really wanted to use it!

Recently, I started watching the “You Tube” channel looking for new ideas. My morning routine now includes: eating breakfast, drinking coffee and watching “You Tube” for inspiration. There are so many talented people with amazing ideas. It’s a plethora of projects in the making. I narrowed it down to one that really caught my eye. A faux cement technique using chalk paint. I found the video on “Julie’s Designs and Signs”. In the video she used the technique on old paint cans and they came out so good, I just had to try it!

These are some of the items I planned on using the technique on. Two pitchers, a ceramic box and two candles holders all purchased at Good Will. The two glass bottles I already had.

In the video, she used Waverly Chalk Paint in Mineral and mixed it with baking soda.

The first coat went on thin.

This is how it looked after the second coat. It is hard to believe it is the same pitcher. Look at that texture!

At the same time I was painting the pitcher, I also worked on one of the bottles. Once they were dry, I did the second part of the technique, adding Waverly White Wax.

After applying the white wax you wipe if off with dry paper towel. The texture from the baking soda picks up the white wax and really makes it look like cement.

See what I mean about being Gobsmacked! I am so impressed with this technique. I want to try it on everything! I wish you could touch them. They have the look and feel of real stone.

Next up was the large ceramic box. Part of the video I watched showed how to use molds and stamps to embellish the pieces. I ordered a bird mold and stamps from “Iron Orchid Design”. The bird mold was available, but the stamps are on back order. I guess I wasn’t the only one who wanted to try this technique.

I purchased DAS air dry modeling clay at Michael’s. I want to add birds to the front of the box.

They recommend putting flour or corn starch in the mold to keep the clay from sticking.

Press the clay in the mold, get rid of the extra and pop it out.

I attached the bird molds with Gorilla Glue and let them dry overnight.

Here it is after two coats of chalk paint mixture. I know, right!!

I couldn’t wait to put on the white wax!

This is what it looked like after applying the white wax.

I think it would be gorgeous as a planter. You could also use it in an entryway with the lid to hold the mail.

The pitcher would be perfect for flowers. You can also use it in the kitchen to hold utensils.

Lastly, the bottle. It has so much character it can stand alone or maybe as a bud vase.

It took longer than I thought to dry in between so I was not able to complete all of the items. I will definitely use this technique again. I can’t wait to try out the crockery stamps using this technique with clay! I will keep you posted (ha ha no pun intended)!

I Love Corbels!

I will say it again, I love corbels! They can add interest, texture and most definitely a wow factor! We put corbels on the island in our kitchen and it changed feel of the entire piece. The curves softened the edges and brought it to the next level. And now, I have found another great application for them that I would like to share with you.

During the addition/renovation, we removed a small closet and the soffit between the kitchen and family room. These changes opened up the family room into the kitchen and dining area, making it feel like one open space. The transformation is amazing. I love it, but I am having trouble tying in the area where the closet was into the family room. It almost feels like an afterthought. I contemplated buying a larger media console that would extend into the new area, but the cost of consoles was not in the budget. I was a bit stumped at this point, so I started looking for inspiration in magazines and online. I found a picture of the most amazing shelf with antique corbels. The perfect solution to tie in the new space. I looked everywhere, Etsy, Rehouse Architectural Salvage in Rochester NY, Facebook Market Place and Craigslist. It was either over priced, too small, too large or not the style I was looking for. I had almost given up hope, until I went to my local Annie Sloan Stockist “The Purple Painted Lady”. I was there to purchase Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, but what did I spy with my little eye, the perfect pair of corbels! They were reproduction, but looked like old antique ones, and they were the perfect size. Best of all, the price was amazing! Sometimes, I forget that the “Purple Painted Lady” sells much more than chalk paint. FYI: The Purple Painted Lady Festival is happening this year… September 18th and 19th, 2021, and I will be a vendor again! So excited!

I took the corbels home and began to look for wood to use as a shelf. Lucky for me, my husband went dumpster diving during the addition/renovation and pulled usable wood for future projects. Hello future project!

Here is one of the corbels. Perfection!

The width of the shelf we wanted was 48 inches We took it outside, cut it to size and sanded lightly.

To give the wood a more weathered look, I used a mixture of Annie Sloan Chicago Gray Chalk Paint and water to create a gray wash.

I put it on in light coats so I could keep the wood graining.

It reminds me of driftwood.

I sealed it with Annie Sloan Clear Wax.

The corbel was a little dark so I added a some of the gray wash to lighten it.

The finished product! Now, on to the fun stuff; Styling!

This oil painting is one of my mother-in-law’s. It does not go with the décor in her room, so she asked if we could use it somewhere. Yes!!!

As soon as I saw this statue, I fell in love with it. It is the epitome of a mother and child connection!

I was having so much fun. I decided to do two more vignettes.

Vignette number two!

I bought this Mary Cassett print at a rummage sale. It cost one dollar! I can never decide if she is sad or perplexed!

Vignette number three! I got to use my monkey’s!

You should have seen my house. I was taking items from everywhere trying to put these vignettes together. My son came home and saw the mess and did not blink an eye. He is used to my creative process!

I really enjoyed this project. It has been a long time since I just got to play! I would really like to hear which vignette you like the best.

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Laundry Room/Mud Room Reveal!

Our laundry room/mudroom is finally done! It took nine months to complete and definitely had some challenges along the way. Having the laundry on the first floor is amazing in itself, but having a place for shoes, boots and coats is even more so. One of my pet peeves are shoes in the foyer as you come in the door. With the laundry right off the entrance from the garage, now everyone can take off their shoes and coats before entering the main part of the house. Just the idea makes me do a happy dance in my head!

I remember when I was writing this blog entry. I was trying to explain my vision and having no success. I finally just drew on the picture to explain.

I wanted a utility sink for the laundry room with character. I could have purchased a new one, but I was not willing to pay over a thousand dollars. Instead, I bought one to refinish.

I used the Rust-Oleum Sink and Tub refinishing kit. I also asked my readers to help me choose between black and yellow paint for the sink base. Yellow won out!

For this entire project, I was making decisions about long term items such as flooring, counter tops and cabinets that had classic style and would stand the test of time. To me this tile will never go out of style with its timeless pattern and neutral color. It is one for the long haul!

Picking out wallpaper was a time consuming process. I knew I wanted something that was fun, but not too over the top. I looked at many samples and this one just spoke to me. The pattern and color is not too over powering and will go with anything. It makes me smile every time I go in there!

Next the lighting fixtures and washer and dryer were installed. This is when things came to a stand still. Our contractor was having problems finding a plumber who would put in the utility sink. The drain needed to be replaced and he was afraid the sink would break. The sink also weighs a lot and needed extra support. Our contractor ended up changing the drain. He also found out the framer had put in extra support knowing we were going to hang the sink. With the drain done and enough support, he was able to find a plumber and get it installed!

I was so excited to finally see my sink hung up! Unfortunately, we had some glitches. The original faucet we picked out was too long so we had to replace it. The replacement had a pin hole leak in the metal and a fine stream of water was spraying out like a fountain so we had to order yet another one. Finally, it all came together and the sink was installed.

When the plumber was finished putting in the sink it was scraped up quite a bit. It was no fault of the plumber. He had to tighten the faucets and the finish came off.

Rust-Oleum has a repair kit for touch ups like this. I ordered it and while I waited, worked on shelves for shoe storage.

We built the shelves to hold shoes and boots. However, we purposely built it tucked around the corner so none of it could be seen from the dining room. Because it may look pretty now, but with boys who have size twelve and thirteen size shoes, it won’t always look this good.

Here is the result after I used the Rust-Oleum repair kit and touched up the base of the sink with yellow paint. I think it looks fantastic!

These are the hooks I put up for coats and bags. The finish is an antique wrought iron. It adds texture and character.

Each person has their own shelf. The shelves are lined with clear plastic to protect it from wet shoes. On the top shelf there is a bin (m) for mittens, (h) for hats. To the left of the shelves is a place for my broom and mop.

Under the shelves is a place for boots.

I had to return the bench I originally purchased for the space. After the shelves went in, it was too big. I replaced it with this metal bistro chair. It looks great and does not take up to much room

This is another shelf above the washer and dryer. The brackets are the same as the ones I used in the powder room, except I did not paint these.

I love these bins. They have a pale gray stripe. It looks great with the wall paper!

Because the washer and dryer needs to be away from the wall, all the wiring and tubing behind it was a real eyesore!

We build a unit that goes right over the top to hide it all. It also provides a place to put things like the cute soap dish a dear friend gave me in the perfect shade of yellow.

Lastly, my Bee Plates. Bee Kind, Bee Joyful and Let’s Bee Friends. Could not have said it better!

I think I accomplished most everything I set out to do. I have shoe and boot storage. A place for mittens, hats and coats. A niche for my broom and mop. Another shelf for detergent and what not. A sink to wash brushes and cut flowers. I do have a hanger for my ironing board and iron, but the cute ironing board cover did not come in time and the one I have has a burn mark on it. The only thing I do not have is a place to fold clothes. All my other boxes were checked off so I am okay with that!