February 28, 2011

Master Closet Makeover: Part 1

Last Tuesday, I made mention of the fact that one of the closets in our bedroom needed some major help in the organization department, and I was planning to make that a priority this weekend. Well, thankfully, I had a couple hours on Saturday and Sunday to focus on the cleaning out process as well as shopping for a few needed items, and I got about about 3/4 of the way done with this closet makeover. Lord willing, I should be able to finish it off tonight. Hooray.

So, I wanted to give you a little progress update before I can show you the more finished results tomorrow.

As a reminder, here's kind of what the closet looked like beforehand... we had an old, old, old dresser (in which the drawers hardly opened) and 2 bookcases in the closet along with a built-in desk. And all junk that was stacked everywhere was covered in a layer of dust.

I started the cleaning out process by moving everything out of the closet and into the bedroom. This allowed me to dust off everything as I went and see everything we had in order to begin the sorting process. So, the bedroom looked kind of messy at that point...

I decided the 2 bookcases along with our stacks of games and old videos would be shuffled downstairs to the 3rd bedroom (soon-to-be-home office). We also moved the old dresser down to the basement to be used for something else eventually.

Once I had gotten everything out, I vacuumed the room and cleaned the window and baseboards...

... and cleaned out the little built-in desk.

Then I took note of items that needed attention... like this outlet that had been switched out when we moved in, but was never screwed into the wall and covered up.

And this horribly old light fixture that had seen better days. It did have a plastic light cover on it when we first moved in, but it was so awful looking that I took it off right away when we began painting.

I spent a few hours sorting through the stacks of items that were all over the bedroom. Throwing away socks with holes in them and other items we just didn't need and were in too poor condition to donate anywhere. I filled 2 garbage bags.

Lastly, I decided how I wanted the closet laid out in terms of what would go where - and then made a mental list of a few things I needed to purchase for the room:
  • Mirror
  • Light Fixture
  • Window Covering
  • Small rug
  • Hooks for the walls
...and that closed out Saturday afternoon.

On Sunday afternoon, I ran some errands and picked out a few of the items listed above. Knowing this was "just a closet" (as a reminded myself over and over), I wanted to spend as little money as possible on the items I needed.

So, I prayed really hard that I would find what I needed as cheaply as possible - and that I would have self-control to put the nice (but more expensive) items back on the shelves and stick to a tight budget.

And thankfully, the Lord answered my prayer, and I was able to find everything I needed at a cheap price and much of it was on sale/clearance. I did a happy dance when I got home. Joey thought I'd lost my marbles.

I shopped at both Lowe's and Menard's and found a few things at each place. Here is a breakdown of the items purchased...

1. Lowe's Style Selections 27"W x 72"L Roman Shade
One of the first items I wanted to purchase for the closet was some type of window covering. We needed a little privacy in there, if you know what I mean. Lowe's has a good selection of window coverings including bamboo blinds and fabric/bamboo roman shades, both of which I like. So, I thought I'd start here. Most of the windows in our old house are odd sized widths, making it difficult to find coverings that fit today's standard sizes. Thankfully, the windows in the closets are a standard 27 inches wide. I walked down the aisle looking at the 27-inch-options and saw the words "Clearance" next to one of their PRIVACY matchstick roman shades! And the color was in Cocoa Brown. It was perfect.

The only picture I could find online has the wrong width, but you get the idea...

Original Price: $27.96
Clearance Price: $13.98! SOLD!

2. Lowe's Chenille Rib Rug
With the roman shade in my cart, I made my way to the area rug section of Lowe's. We have hardwood floors in the whole house, including the closets. So, I wanted to have a little rug for warmth and comfort under our feet. Nothing fancy, but I did want it to have a little color. Lowe's actually has a fairly large selection of rugs, but I found most to be too expensive. Just as I was ready to give up, I passed this little guy sitting on the bottom shelf and the tag was marked CLEARANCE! I'm not sure what the original price was, but I got for $13.48. The size was 27 inches by 45 inches. I had measured the floor in advance and was thinking a 3 foot by 5 foot would be nice. This was close enough.

Here's a little snapshot to give you an idea of color. It has the exact same brown as the roman shade I purchased above PLUS it has greens and blues - the accent colors I'm using in the bedroom. Perfect!

I didn't even think to check what the original price was, but I found some comparable rugs (same size and look) on Lowe's website and the cost was $88. Crazy!

I also looked at hooks, mirrors, and light fixtures at Lowe's, but found all to be way above my price limits. So, I drove a block to Menard's to get the 3 remaining items...

3. Menard's Hooks
I Love shopping for hardware - hooks, knobs, handles - and it was hard for me to say NO to some of the super pretty items. For example, I could have bought some fancy hooks like this...

... and I would have LOVED them. BUT I would have paid upwards of $10 per hook (and I wanted 10+ hooks)! So, I put the fancy hooks back on the shelf and stuck to the simplest little hooks I could find.

I bought 10 large hooks and 3 small hooks looking like this...

... and they cost me only $0.98 each. That's right - 98 CENTS! So, 13 hooks added up to about 13 dollars. Much better than $10 per hook. All piled on the bed, they looked like this...

4. Menard's Light Fixture
I enjoy shopping for light fixtures almost as much as hardware, and again there were so many pretty options to choose from, but I had to remind myself "this is only a closet" and I ended up purchasing a little flushmount fixture that has a brushed nickled finish like the hooks. Cost was $14.99...

5. Menard's Mirror
I walked down the mirror aisle seeing all kinds of pretty framed mirrors that cost between $20-$120. I didn't even want to spend $20 on the mirror. I walked a little further down the aisle to find non-framed mirrors...all on sale at $15% off! I could not find a picture of the mirror on Menard's website, so you'll have to wait until tomorrow to see the picture of it, but it is a simple beveled edge rectangle mirror. Sale price was $11.45.

That concludes the shopping portion of things. Total came to $66.64 + Tax. But I had $20 spending money from a previous gift. So, out of pocket was actually about $47!

Now you can understand why I did a happy dance!!!

Joey was able to hang the window shade, mirror, light fixture, and hooks for me right before we went to bed. So, tonight, I should be able to get everything in it's place and hopefully have some finished pictures for you tomorrow!

Happy Organizing!

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February 24, 2011

I Have a Secret

Psssst... I entered one of my blog posts into a little contest...

For those of you not familiar with the blog, The CSI Project, I highly recommend checking it out. It offers all kinds of contests for a million different homemade projects (decorating, design, fashion, food, etc..) and offers prizes to winners. Each week there is a Guest Judge who will decide their favorite project as well as the Top 10 contestants. There is one contest per week!

This week's contest is ... MOLDING! This includes anything from crown molding to bead board to board and batten, and all kinds of decorative trim which are so hot right now.

When you enter the challenge of the week, you enter the link to the specific post on your blog that relates to the project.

Click HERE to view this week's contest and scroll to the bottom to view the project I entered (#38), check out the dozens of other entries that showcase the beautiful use of woodwork, and you can even add your own link if you have a blog and are into that kind of stuff!

Or just click the CSI Project Button below to check out the full website!

Visit thecsiproject.com

Happy Blogging!
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February 23, 2011

Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

I was browsing around good ol' Tar-jay the other day, when I stumbled down the bedding aisle to see if any new items had popped up on the shelves. You see, I would LOVE to eventually get new bedding for our king-sized bed in the Master Bedroom, and I've been looking at bedding for about 8 months (I'm a little indecisive on this one).

The bedding we currently have isn't bad, but we've had it since we first got married (6+ years ago), and I feel like A) it's starting to get a little worn/faded and B) sometimes a little mix-up is just needed.

Currently, we have a comforter on top of the bed, which is nice and all, but I really want a nice down comforter with a pretty Duvet Cover (much easier for washing/drying and switching out the duvet cover down the road if needed). But this can all be kind of pricey when you start to add up everything - Down Comforter + Duvet Cover + Pillowcases/Shams + Sheets (maybe) + Blankets + Throw pillows etc etc etc...

So, while I save up my pennies, I continue to browse for bedding that sparks my interest, and this bedding I came across in Target did just that. So, I whipped out my camera (this is why my camera goes just about everywhere with me) and took a couple of shots of what I was seeing on the shelf (and I just ignored all the people walking by who are probably wondering "why is that girl taking pictures of items on the shelf?"... I get that look a lot.)

The first thing I came across was this duvet cover. It has very neutral colors - which kinda blends in with my "khaki" walls, BUT it has a beautiful paisley pattern AND it can be paired with all kinds of colorful bedding - blankets, sheets, pillowcases, and throw pillows - which I really like.

Speaking of blankets, right next to the duvet was this stack of sage green textured blankets, which I also thought were beautiful...

... and that set my wheels turning for how to pair the 2 items together.

Then I saw this little picture hanging on the shelves which showed off this concept (it was like Target was reading my mind, seriously)...

So, I stacked the duvet cover on top of the blanket to see the 2 items right next to each other, and I really like the color combination.

This way, when the bed is all made up (and I am pretty OCD about making my bed every day - thanks mom and dad), I can fold the duvet portion down toward the bottom of the bed, and have the green blanket plus pretty sheets and pillows be the focal point of the bedding.

Now for some throw pillows, I thought... and voila! On the shelf above was this chocolate brown pillow. That would totally fit my "brown/tan/white/green" color scheme I use in the Christmas/winter season.

But what about spring and summer and fall? Well, I could toss in different pillows in other seasons for fun.

Cost breakdown of just this bedding (all king-sized):

So, we're looking at about $300+ for the main items (not including new sheets). Is it worth it for all new bedding?

One of the positives is that the Down Comforter we buy would be an "investment" in the sense that we would want to hang on to that for a long time and then if we get tired of the duvet cover we could always switch that up a few years from now and it wouldn't be near as expensive.

But either way I guess I'll be saving up my pennies for a little while. Pin It

February 22, 2011

Master Closet Help

We have 2 (!) small-ish walk-in-closets in our Master Bedroom. Shocking for a house built in 1928, but one of the many bonuses I loved about this house when we bought it.

Prior to moving into the house, we painted the closet walls and ceilings the same color as our master bedroom. It helps them blend in as if part of the room, and they look more interesting with color rather than plain white. Both closets are long and lean (aka narrow). Here they are all nice and empty (and yes, each closet has its own window - our house has 5 million windows - no exaggeration)...

The first closet on the left is the used for hanging clothes and storing shoes. It could use a few hooks to hang belts and things like that, but otherwise is pretty functional as is.

The second closet on the right has become the "extra dumping ground" for random leftovers that don't fit anywhere else in the room, and I'm ashamed to say now looks something like this...

This narrow closet consists of the following:

  • A little built-in desk (with a 50's pink laminate top) full of junk - like my old college textbooks, bed risers, and a CD/Cassette Player
  • An old dresser (covered in dust) that holds some of Joey's mismatched items - like long-johns and old T-shirts
  • 2 dusty bookcases holding stacks of games, old VHS movies, my hodgepodge of jewelry and lotion/perfume, and 2 bins of socks
  • The floor is also covered in leftover items - like boxes, bags, and picture frames

I can't stand the pain of opening this closet door anymore. It needs help. And while we do have some long-term plans for the closet down the road, for now, it needs to be much more user-friendly. And I plan to improve it's condition by this weekend.

This closet needs organization, cleaning, and proper storage set-up. It could use a little decor too - new light fixture and a curtain (not sure if I'll get to that or not). And I need to weed through items that need to be tossed/donated. If you have ideas on what to do with that mini-desk, please share. We would never actually use it as desk. So, it needs to become something else.

Here are a couple of inspiration pictures to get us motivated...

{by Censational Girl}

{by Honey We're Home}

{by T. Ingram Interiors}

Anyone else in need a mini-closet-makeover? I feel your pain!

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February 18, 2011

I Heart...

Natural beams stand out; White beams are more subtle.


...including stencils/patterns/murals/wainscoting etc...



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