Guest Room: Still Working on It

Now that we’ve got a shiny new king-sized bed in our master bedroom, our guest room finally has a queen-sized bed. Can you believe we were making our guests sleep in a full?! Sorry, guests. Now, you get to enjoy a slightly-larger knock-off TempurPedic mattress. Was it worth the wait? It was, right?

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Charcoal Guest Room with Marbled Paper and Urban Outfitters Eyeball Sconces

Once we moved the bigger bed in, it became clear very quickly that our giant nightstands needed to go. We already had the round wood table on the left – it was actually in our house when we moved in – and we found the Target Threshold gold accent table that I’ve been wanting since February on clearance for $29.98! It was AWESOME. They also had most of the other brass/gold accent tables on sale, but I actually thought this one was the nicest-looking (read: least cheap) in person. I put an acrylic gold tray on top to warm it up a bit. The only thing that stinks about it is that it doesn’t camouflage anything: you can see all the cords on the floor behind it.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Charcoal guest room with gold accent table and bronze sconces

As you can see, I haven’t “styled” either nightstand yet. They’re so small! I don’t know what to put on them. We no longer have room for table lamps, so we opted for wall sconces. After a lot of wishy-washying, I finally bit the bullet and ordered the Urban Outfitters Eyeball Sconces in bronze. I was really iffy about it, because they’re just a bit more modern than I’d like, and I don’t totally trust UO’s quality, but in the end, you just can’t beat $29 for a sconce.

Urban Outfitters Eyeball Sconce in Bronze on Charcoal Walls

I was pretty happy when they arrived – the bronze is just the right shade, and they’re surprisingly sturdy-feeling. Unfortunately, they come with a white cord, which is not cute. I copied Jenny Komenda (for not-the-first and certainly-not-the-last time) and painted the top portion of the cords the same color as the wall, and that helped a lot.

Urban Outfitters Bronze Eyeball Sconce on Charcoal Walls

I had plenty of extra Ashland Slate lying around, since I’ve used it on so many things (the guest room walls, the kitchen cabinets, and the Rast dressers). I opted to use my sample pot on the cords, since it was a) the easiest to open and b) the thinnest formula.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Painting Cords on Urban Outfitters Eyeball Sconce

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Urban Outfitters Eyeball Sconce with Painted Cord

I moved our marbled paper above the bed, and I really like it there. Now, the bed itself needs some work. The ol’ Ikea Hemnes and toile duvet had a good run, but they’re not doing it for me in this room. I think I want to find a way to upholster the headboard with beige linen and brass nailheads – something like this.

Beige Headboard with Brass Nailheads

I’d like to replace the duvet cover with a solid white one, like this, and then bring in some color with shams in a large-scale floral. Maybe one of these?

Ideally, I’d pair those with my Ikea black and white graphic throw pillows, since I already own them.

Ikea Lappljung Ruta Black and White Graphic Cushion Cover

Is it cliché to mix floral and geometric patterns yet? I hope not, because I’m still into it.

We still have a light wood bookcase and dresser on the other side of the room, and something has to be done about that. The dresser is way bigger than it needs to be, so I’d like to replace it with something smaller. The bookcase is OK, but I want to give painting it a shot. It’s cheapy veneer, so I’m not sure how well that will go.

Maybe, some day, I’ll actually feel like I’m finished with a room! Any room! Just one?

Do you find yourself constantly updating the decor in your house, or do you finish a room and move on completely? What would you do to update our guest room?

Gray and Gold Rast Hack

WHOA. I can’t believe it’s been more than a month since my last post! I’ll be honest: We’ve finally reached the point where we can’t really justify spending any more money on stuff for the house. Consequently, I have nothing new and don’t have much to post about (though I do still need to finish the house tour). BUT – I did recently finish a furniture DIY that’s been a long time coming.

I’ll just dive right in and show you:
Glitter and Goat Cheese - Ikea Rast dresser hack - Painted dark gray with brass hardware

Over a year after purchasing two Ikea Rast dressers, I finally got around to painting them!

Let’s go back to the beginning. I got the idea for this project from Design Manifest. This was my inspiration:

This is what the Rasts looked like when I first purchased them, of course:

I spray-painted the toe kicks gold immediately while the dressers were still in multiple pieces. Then, Brad put them together for me, and I brought them into the foyer to use for storage while they were waiting to be completed. Remember?

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Ikea Rast dresser hack - before painting

For whatever reason, though, I never ended up painting them. And once we moved into our new house, they came along, still unfinished. Here’s a peek at how they looked on Thanksgiving:

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Ikea Rast dresser hast - before painting

I didn’t get motivated until right before we decided to host a Super Bowl party. It was the first time most of our friends would see our new home, and I wanted it to look good. So, I gathered my supplies: Kilz spray primer; a foam roller; and Sherwin Williams ProClassic paint in Satin, color-matched to Benjamin Moore’s Ashland Slate (the same color as our kitchen cabinets and guest room walls).

I already had all the hardware: Antique brass decorative corners from Hardware World, and brass ring pulls from Lee Valley (43mm x 51mm burnished bronze, to be specific). The decorative corners had to be glued on – I used a Krazy Glue pen – so my plan was to lacquer the dressers before anything permanent happened. Unfortunately, spray lacquer can only be used in temperatures above 55 degrees, and that wasn’t going to happen before the party. So, I just put the hardware on anyway, because I am the most impatient person on the planet.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Ikea Rast dresser hack - Painted dark gray with brass hardware

When I do get around to lacquering these and have to tape off the decorative corners, I know I’m going to be cursing myself. But I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Ikea Rast dresser hack - Painted dark gray with brass hardware

I’m actually glad I didn’t paint these until we got here, because I love that they’re the same color as the kitchen cabinets. It ties the two rooms together without being too matchy.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Ikea Rast dresser hack - Painted dark gray with brass hardware

There was just one snafu in this process: My gold toe kicks got kicked to the curb. Somehow, they got really dirty and stained and dark and gross over the course of the year. I could have re-painted them, but that would have required either taking them apart or taping them off, and I was just in too much in a hurry. Instead, I primed right over the dirty gold. They look nice for now, but I think I might like to goldify the toe kicks by hand at a later date. Maybe with high-quality acrylic? Or gold leaf? I just don’t know!

So, what do you think of my Rasts? Worth the wait? Should I goldify the toe kicks, or leave them gray?


House Tour: The Guest Room

I swear, I’m going to finish this house tour. Soon. There are only three rooms left!

At the top of the stairs, our master bedroom is on the left, and a short hallway is on the right. In a strange twist, the whole upstairs, other than the bathrooms and our bedroom, has nice, glossy hardwoods. Why couldn’t those be downstairs?!

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Hallway

At the end of the hallway, there are two smaller bedrooms and a guest bathroom. Both rooms are basically square, and they were just boring when we moved in. The room on the back of the house was set up as an office, but since it had the smaller closet, we decided to use it as a guest room.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Move-in pictures - The office

It was very YELLOW.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Move-in pictures - Office closet

I knew I wanted our guest room to be moody, cozy and calm, and I had my heart set on dark gray walls with a neutral color palette. These were my two favorite inspiration photos:

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Erika Brechtel's dark gray guest room via Small Shop Studio

Erika Brechtel’s dark gray master bedroom from Small Shop Studio

I tested three dark grays by Benjamin Moore.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Benjamin Moore dark gray paint samples

From left to right: Ashland Slate, Englewood Cliffs and Gray Shower (all Benjamin Moore)

My favorite was Ashland Slate, but with only one (albeit large) window, I was a little worried that the dark gray would swallow the room. Obsessing, I sent pictures to my coworkers for opinions. One of them suggested some bright white crown molding and a picture rail to break up all the dark color. When I came across this inspiration photo, the heavens parted:

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Dark gray bedroom with white trim via Houzz

Scot Meacham Wood Design via Houzz

It was such a good idea! And lucky me – I have a handy husband who just happens to have a handy father. The two of them cut and installed the trim in just one weekend, and a week later, our painters added the charcoal gray and some glossy white trim paint. So, here’s what the room looks like now:

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Guest bedroom with dark gray walls and neutral color palette

The white curtains (which need to be hemmed), sheepskin rugs and accent pillow are all from Ikea, of course.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Guest bedroom with dark gray walls

I don’t really like much else in the room. I don’t mind the quilt, which I got on clearance from Target years ago, but I ultimately want to replace it with a white pintuck duvet cover. I’m vowing not to replace any of the other bedding until I get our queen-sized bed out of our room and into the guest room, though.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Guest bedroom with dark gray walls and white picture rail

The wood nightstands and dresser were Brad’s from his college bedroom, and while they’ve had a good run, I’m ready to say goodbye to them. It might be worth painting them, but they’re not solid wood, so I haven’t really decided yet. I’m not in any huge hurry.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Guest bedroom with dark gray walls, and white picture rail and crown molding

I really, really love the wall color and the trim, though. It actually may be the sunniest room in the house, so the charcoal shade is never gloomy or overwhelming.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Bright guest bedroom with dark gray walls and sheepskin rugs

It’s the room I spend the least time in, but I think some day it might end up being one of my favorites!

So, have I gotten close to my inspiration photos yet? Should I ditch the furniture, or paint it?


Baby Steps: Updating the Kitchen

When we’re feeling brave and rich, we’re going to gut our kitchen. Hardwood floors, new cabinets, granite countertops … but until then, there’s only so much we can do. I mentioned our plans for a Phase 1 update in this post, and I’m happy to report that most of them are complete.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Kitchen with painted cabinets and gold hardware

We’ve removed the upper cabinets that blocked the view to/from the dining room, painted the remaining cabinets, and Rub ‘n Buffed the existing cabinet hardware to a soft gold.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Kitchen with dark gray cabinets and gold hardware

Brad and his dad removed the cabinets, and we paid our painters to refinish the cabinets. It was worth every penny to not do it ourselves. They only charged us $300, and when I consider the fumes alone (we used oil-based paint for extra durability), I have no regrets whatsoever. The color is Ashland Slate by Benjamin Moore, and it’s the same color we used in our guest room.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Dark gray cabinets with gold hardware

There are still a few more changes we’re hoping to make before the major renovation. Updating the horrendous fluorescent light fixture and changing the wall outlets to GFCI (with nice, white wall plates) are at the top of our list.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Dark gray painted cabinets with gold hardware

I still hate the tile floors, but this yellow area rug helps distract me from their yuckiness.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Dark gray painted cabinets with gold hardware and yellow accents

The rug is Nate Berkus from Target, and I’m obsessed with it. It’s light-colored and it’s in the kitchen, so it surely has a short life span. When it finally gets so dingy that I have to get rid of it, I will mourn its passing like that of a dear friend.

While I doubt my rug will survive for long in the kitchen, our magical greenhouse window seems to keep plants alive way past their expected time of death.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Kitchen greenhouse window

See the plant in the middle? That’s one of those little basil plants you get in the PRODUCE SECTION at Kroger. It didn’t even come in a pot – it came in a plastic bag. We had one at our last place, and it died after three days. This one has been alive for six weeks. IN A COFFEE MUG. The plant on the left is from the house’s previous owner. Remember how it took us two months to close? Yeah, the plant just kept on living while it waited for us. The window is magic. I swear.

My penguin lives in the window, too. He only wears the wreath for Christmas time.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Wooden Christmas penguin

Another necessary update? Getting rid of the vertical blinds in front of the sliding doors and replacing them with colorful curtains.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Kitchen with painted dark gray cabinets and gold hardware - Wood cutting board

They’re from Pottery Barn in their Bettina fabric (which has sadly been discontinued). I love how they cheer up all the cool bluish-grays in the space, along with the warm gold hardware.

I originally planned to replace all the cabinet hardware with new knobs, but I figured it couldn’t hurt to try DIY-ing it first. After sanding each knob with fine grit sandpaper, I used Rub ‘n Buff in Gold Leaf to add a soft golden sheen.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - DIY kitchen cabinet hardware update - From dark brass to gold with Rub 'n Buff

Left to right: Original hardware, sanded hardware, Rub ‘n Buff-ed hardware

This method wasn’t perfect. They looked great, but after a few weeks, I noticed that the gold on the often-used knobs was rubbing off. I ended up redoing those and coating them with Valspar’s Clear Satin Sealer. It added a bit of a gritty finish, and it’s a little dusty-looking up close, but no visitor is ever going to notice the difference. Either way, I’d recommend this project for someone on a tight budget looking for a similar result. For one thing, finding non-shiny brass hardware for a reasonable price isn’t easy. With the amount of knobs we needed, I’m sure we would have spent at least $50, if not more. The Rub ‘n Buff was $4 at Michael’s – I used a teeny tiny fraction of the tube for all of these – and the sealant was $4 at Lowe’s. So, yeah, I’m not complaining. Look at the difference it makes!

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Gold vs. brass hardware on dark gray painted cabinets

Rub ‘n Buff-ed hardware on the left, original hardware on the right.

I think we got pretty close to my original cabinet inspiration photo, don’t you?

For funsies, here are the before-and-afters.

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Kitchen before and after

Glitter and Goat Cheese - Kitchen before and after

When we first moved in, we thought gutting the kitchen would be our first priority, but we actually don’t mind it as much now that it’s been spruced up. (We’ll probably put our focus on the master bathroom first!)

Have you made any relatively minor changes to your home that have made a huge difference?