My New Open Kitchen Shelf (and Roman Numeral Print Coupon Code)

November 26, 2014 AT 5:51 pm 6 Comments

So, last week I got to show you my dining area makeover.  

arhaus makeover

I am REALLY enjoying this space.  It just makes me happy when I walk in the kitchen!

Many of you asked me where we got our new open kitchen shelf.  We’ll we made it, of course!  :)

It was so super easy.  I got the three metal brackets from The Home Depot.  I think they were about seven or eight bucks a piece?

DIY Kitchen Shelf
The shelf is simply a 1x10x8 piece of wood from The Home Depot stained with a Dark Walnut stain.  

DIY Kitchen Shelf
Since we needed the shelf centered over the bench, we weren’t able to attach it to the studs in the wall.   We had to use drywall anchors with the screws.  You install the drywall anchors first, and then attach the bracket to the wall with screws.

DIY Kitchen Shelf
Lastly, we screwed the shelf into the metal brackets.  

I decorated the shelf with items I had around the house.  The aqua bottles I got at Hobby Lobby last year.  The small pitcher was my moms and the large pitcher is from Home Goods.  The Artichaut plate was my mom’s.  She got it at a yard sale years ago.

I love adding real greenery to my decor.  Those adorable little plants were on clearance at Lowe’s for $1.00 each.  Precious!  

DIY Kitchen Shelf
The black mirror was a Goodwill find years ago.  I painted it black for our former laundry/mudroom in our previous home.

DIY Kitchen Shelf
The candle is from Marshall’s.  The wicker tray is from Walmart’s bathroom section.

DIY Kitchen Shelf
Since we had to hang the shelves high enough over the bench so we wouldn’t hit our heads on it when we got up and down, it left a huge, awkward empty space under the shelves.

I already had the frame from Kirkland’s, but hadn’t ever used it before.  

DIY Kitchen Shelf
I printed this scripture printable and placed it in the frame.

It says, “From the fullness of His Grace we have all received one BLESSING after another.  John 1:16″

I thought that was a perfect scripture for the table since we always say our blessing before we eat.

Chalkboard printable
I only had one frame, so I had to put something else in the other empty space.  I had the cutting board/ipad/recipe book holder on my other kitchen shelves.  I recently purchased it at Home Goods, and I love it!

I attached it to the wall, but it needed something more.  The sweet bird plate was a gift from my friend, Layla, last year when she and her husband, Kevin, visited us.  I sat it in the groove part, and it was perfect!  I added a piece of 3M adhesive to the back of the plate to keep it in place.  I know one of my boys would have knocked that plate off if I hadn’t! :)

bird plate
The other piece of art that I decorated my space with was this awesome Roman Numeral Print that I recently purchased from Jenna Sue Designs!

It is our wedding anniversary date!  Isn’t that cool?!  I got the wood frame half off at Hobby Lobby.

Roman Numeral Print
Jenna Sue has an AMAZING BLOG, and I love to go to it for inspiration.  (Her kitchen is to DIE for!)  She had one of these Roman Numeral prints in her home, and I knew I had to have one!  Mine is a 16×20, but you can get it smaller if you want. 

Here’s some good news! 

Jenna Sue is offering a 20% off coupon code: BENEATHMYHEART20 for all of my readers!  Woo to the hoo!

That code is valid on anything (except canvas prints) at through the end of the year.

Jenna Sue has more than just Roman Numeral Prints, so visit her shop and check them out! 

Happy Shopping!!!

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5 Reasons I Love My Kitchen Open Shelves

October 6, 2014 AT 4:29 pm 29 Comments


Why I Love my Open Shelves


When we moved in our house four years ago, I knew one of the first rooms I wanted to do a makeover on was our kitchen.


Wasn’t it beautiful?!  Winking smile








I also knew that one of the first things I wanted to do was remove the soffit and upper cabinets and install open shelves.


Now my kitchen looks like this…




I LOVE my open shelves!!


When I shared them on my blog, most readers loved them too.


However, I had some readers not like the idea of open shelves, and that is totally fine.


And every now and then, I get a comment or email asking me if I still like my open shelves, or if they get dirty easily.


Well, I am hear to tell you that almost four years later, I am still in love with my open shelves and here are four reasons why.


1.  All of my dishes are easy to reach.


I love being able to just reach up and grab a dish or cup that I need.  I have the dishes that I use on a daily basis on the bottom open shelf.


There is no time wasted opening and closing doors.  I just grab and go.


2.  The shelves are easy to Decorate.


Open shelves literally decorate themselves.  To me, they look beautiful just full of white dishes, and if that was all I ever wanted to do, that would look great.


But just add a few red dishes to the white ones, and boom, you are ready for Christmas!  Smile



In the spring, I put the red dishes in my pantry, and bring out more springy dishes.




Open shelves look great with baskets on them which makes for a lot of extra storage.  I like to store my linen napkins in my baskets.


3.  My open shelves keep me organized.


Like I said above, I only keep out the dishes that I use the most.  The rest of my dishes that I only use every once and a while or on special occasions are in cabinets in the laundry room off of the kitchen.




I am amazed at how many kitchen items I almost never use!  Open shelves help me keep away the clutter.  When I had cabinets with doors, I would stuff them full of stuff because I knew that no one would really see it, and boy were they a mess!


4.  It makes it easy for guests.


Have you ever been over someone’s house, and you are trying to help out in the kitchen, but all you keep saying is, “Where’s your bowls?”  and “I don’t know where your glasses are?”


Not at my house!  Everything is easy to see and easy to find, and I love that my guests do not have to ask me where everything is.  I hope it makes them feel more comfortable in my home.


5.  They are so easy to clean and the dirt can’t hide!


So, it always seems that the main reason that people don’t like open shelves is because they say they would be hard to keep clean. 


Not true.  Yes, they do get dirty, but not like people think. 




Every couple of months, I just take a cloth and cleaner and wipe them off.  No big deal.



And the good thing is that my shelves look clean all the time, even if they aren’t.   Smile


I also like that my shelves are white, so that when they are dirty, I can see the dirt and get rid of it. I’m glad the dirt isn’t hiding on dark wood cabinets.

So there you have it!   Those are the reasons I am still loving my open shelves.


What are your thoughts about open shelves?

Love ‘em?  Hate ‘em?








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Industrial Shelves {for a boy’s room}

February 23, 2014 AT 6:41 pm 44 Comments


I finally finished the industrial shelves on Luke’s wall!

industrial shelves from

I’ve been dying to show them to you!

industrial shelves from

They have been finished for quite a while now, but I was searching for the perfect light to go over his bed, and I haven’t been able to find it.  Sad smile

So I am still looking.  But for now, I am just using this silver pendant light from IKEA.  It works.

industrial shelves from

I have had fun decorating his shelves with some old things and some new things.

The “Explore” sign was from Gordman’s.  The blue fan was a yard sale find for about five dollars several years ago.  I got the colorful, old books at the local antique mall.  The red truck we have had for a while, and I can’t remember where we got it.  The glass jar is from Walmart, and the blue frame I bought at Gordman’s.

boys room decor

My favorite purchase for the room was the “exit” sign.  I love the color it adds to the wall, and it fits perfectly next to the door to the bedroom.  I purchased it half off at Hobby Lobby.

boys room decor

The US shaped chalkboard and letter “H” were also from Hobby Lobby.  I got the bowling pin from Goodwill several years ago.

industrial shelves from

I love how much storage the shelves hold!  We were able to add baskets, and books, a clock, a globe, and more.

industrial shelves from

It really is such a fun space!

industrial shelves from

The striped rug is from the Ballard Designs’ outlet.  The bedding is from Ikea, except for the grain sack pillow.  I bought the aqua grain sack at the local antique mall and made it into a pillow.

The bed was stained wood until I painted it black last year.  I got the bed frame at a yard sale over 10 years ago for $15.00.  You can’t beat that!

If you missed how I made the rolling storage crates for Luke’s wall, you can read about it HERE.  Or just click on the picture below.

diy rolling storage crates

And if you want to know how I built these shelves, just click HERE or on the picture below.  It shows you how I built Jonathan’s industrial shelves, and how I used the same size pipes for Luke’s wall.

how to build industrial shelves

I am so glad to have these two spaces completed!  I still need to build some desks and add some window coverings, but I am moving on to their bathroom for now.  I have GOT to get that finished!  Smile

If you have any questions, just leave me a comment below!


Have a blessed day!!!

industrial shelves

Linking this post to Home Stories A2Z’s Tutorials and Tips Linky Party!

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How to Build Industrial Shelves

January 21, 2014 AT 1:52 pm 64 Comments

Today, I am going to show you how to build industrial shelves.

how to build industrial shelves

This was a new experience for me, so I just learned as I went along.  But first let me show you the inspiration that got my wheels a turnin’ for this project….

how to build industrial shelves

Boys Room Shelves @Jessica Kraus on A Beautiful Mess

I had considered doing pallet wood walls, but when I saw that picture last year, I KNEW that I wanted to build something like it that in Jonathan and Luke’s room.  Their room is a long, narrow room, and each side of the room is “their space.”

When we were building the walls in their room, {a veeeerrrrry long time ago} we covered one wall on each side with faux brick paneling from Lowe’s.

how to build industrial shelves

To help the brick to not look like paneling, we filled the seams with wood filler.

how to build industrial shelves

Then we sanded it smooth…

how to build industrial shelves

And painted it the same color as the walls, Benjamin Moore, White Dove.

how to build industrial shelves

I printed off some of the inspiration pictures I found on my computer, and then began sketching each of the boy’s walls.

how to build industrial shelves

Jonathan wanted a place to hang his guitars, so I sketched his wall to look like this…

how to build industrial shelves

Then I went to Lowe’s to purchase my supplies.  I chose to use 3/4 inch black iron pipes.  They come in 1/2 inch and 1 inch sizes as well, and you can also purchase galvanized pipes instead of black, if you want.

These are the main four pieces I used:


They only had galvanized floor flanges, so I had to spray paint mine black.

I began laying the pipes out on the floor to make sure I had all the pieces I needed.  Lowe’s didn’t have enough of some of the pieces, but they ordered them for me and arrived within a day or two!

how to build industrial shelves

I bought 2 inch thick pieces of wood for my shelves because I love the look of the thick shelves.  They come in different lengths.   You could save some money by purchasing a thinner wood, if you wanted.

I sanded each piece of wood before using it.

how to build industrial shelves

To begin building the wall, I put the bottom row of pipes together and then lined them up where I wanted them on the floor.  I used some tape to help me keep them straight and a tape measure to make sure they were the same distance apart.

how to build industrial shelves

Then I screwed the flanges to the floor.

how to build industrial shelves

I used a 1 and 1/4 inch drill bit to drill holes in the wood where I needed them.  Sometimes I used a tape measure to figure out where I needed to drill the holes, and sometimes I placed the wood on top of the pipes and used a marker to draw around the pipe so I could see where to drill the hole.  Does that makes sense?

how to build industrial shelves

You can see in the picture below how we added the first shelf.  You just continue doing the same thing for each shelf.

Pipe…T-ring….6 inch pipe…elbow…shelf….repeat.

how to build industrial shelves

Then we created the open space on Jonathan’s shelf by using 18 inch pipes.  You can see how we still used the 6 inch pipes and the elbows underneath the shelf.

how to build industrial shelves

Since the final pipe on top needed to reach the wall, we used an 8 inch pipe instead of a 6 inch pipe.  We attached a flange to that pipe and then screwed it into the wall.  On Jonathan’s wall, it was the perfect length, and we were able to drill into the wall perfectly, but for Luke’s wall, we had to add an extra piece of wood to the back of the flange to make it fit perfectly to the wall.  {Do not ask me why.}  Smile)

how to build industrial shelves

After the shelves were built, I stained them with MinWax Provencial and sealed them with MinWax’s wipe on poly in Satin. Be sure to lightly sand in between each coat of poly.  I applied two coats.

In the picture below, you can see the sizes of the pipes we used.

how to build industrial shelves

Lastly, I added some guitar clips and storage crates.  We’ve put some “décor” on the shelves for now, but I am sure we will be changing a lot of it.

how to build industrial shelves

Jonathan is thrilled with his wall!!  He said he wants to add some more “music” stuff to it, so that is our goal.  I think it is a great use of space and makes his room look so “boyish.”

how to build industrial shelves

I was trying to figure out how much this wall cost, and I think it was around $300 total.  Which is a lot cheaper than most pieces of furniture and makes a much greater impact in the room.  how to build industrial shelves

If you have any more questions about these shelves, just leave me a comment, and I will answer them.



If you love industrial shelving and want even more inspiration, Jen, from Tatertots and Jello, has a great post about them.  Just click on the picture below.

13 industrial shelving ideas

“In accordance with the FTC Guidelines, I am disclosing that I received products from Lowe’s for this project. Although I have a material connection to Lowe’s, any publicly stated opinions of Lowe’s and their products remain my own.”


**Linking this project to Tutorials and Tips Link Party at Home Stories A to Z.

TDC Before and After

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Pantry Coffee Station {#keurig}

November 6, 2013 AT 12:30 am 24 Comments

Well, I’ve given my pantry makeover a new makeover!

Let’s take a look back at what my kitchen pantry looked like the day we moved into our home…

kitchen 016

See the big orange door?  That was my small, dark pantry.  I didn’t like it at all.

So what’s a girl to do?

Well, tear it down, that’s what!

kitchen 017 (2)

Okay, so Cy tore it down.  Smile

And I made supper while he did it.

kitchen 016 (2)

Is it just me, or is seeing your husband tear a down a wall sexy or what?!

kitchen 024 (2)

Once the old pantry was completely gone, I was amazed at how much bigger the kitchen looked!

kitchen 040

Cy built some new cabinets with baskets where the pantry used to be…

microwave 002

We filled up the rest of the empty wall space with a shallow, wide pantry.

kitchen 032

I have loved this pantry ever since!

kitchen 010

It is so easy to see everything inside the pantry and nothing gets “lost” in the back of it.  It’s also easy to clean.

Even though I have loved this pantry very much, I had to make a couple of changes to it.

Why, you ask?

Because of my new Keurig.  Smile


Recently, I received a new Keurig Vue, and it sat on my kitchen countertop by the fridge.

That’s totally fine, except that my toaster, canisters, blender, mixer, and more was on my countertop too.

I don’t like a cluttered countertop, and I don’t have a lot of counter space.

So I decided I needed to “tweek” my pantry to accommodate my Keurig and my toaster.

Here is what the pantry used to look like…

pantry 011

And here it is now that I made room for my new Keurig Vue!

2013-11-05 16.46.41

I simply cut the top pantry shelf in half and cut some new boards to create new shelves.


I used my Rockwell Versacut to cut my 1×12 boards for the new shelves.


This tool is the bombdiggity!


It cuts like butta!


I glued and nailed the new shelves in place and installed an power strip with surge protection down the side of the pantry wall for my toaster and Keurig.

Luckily, there was an outlet underneath the bottom shelf of the pantry that I could plug the power strip into.

2013-11-05 16.48.21

I used screw-in hooks above the Keurig machine to hold my coffee cups.

I also got a carousel to hold my Vue cups and placed it on the shelf beneath my Keurig.


2013-11-05 16.49.51

Even though I lost some shelf space, I also gained some shelf space by creating an extra shelf on the top right of the pantry.

2013-11-05 16.47.05



Keurig’s Best Cup

Brew Stronger. Brew Bigger. Brew Hotter.®
The revolutionary Keurig Vue® Brewer works together with the Vue® packs to deliver the ultimate brewing experience.


Are you a coffee drinker? 

How do you like your coffee?


Click on the picture below to see “before and after” pictures of our complete kitchen makeover!


Disclosure:  I received a free Keurig Vue to review on my blog.  I was not told what to do or say.  Everything I shared is 100% Traci-fied. Smile

*This post contains affiliate links.

Linking this post to Home Stories A to Z Tutorials and Tips linky party

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DIY Dressing Table

June 3, 2013 AT 9:44 am 8 Comments


Hey Friends!  I hope you had a wonderful weekend!

Mine was super busy and super wonderful.  We had very special guests at our house this weekend, and I will share some pictures with you later this week.  Smile


I want to remind you about the Summer Tour of Homes that started today!

Just click on the picture below to start the tour!  Have fun!



Today, I wanted to show you how Cy made my dressing table in our new master closet.

diy dressing table

I knew that I wanted a dressing table in our master closet.  Because of where the windows and lighting were in the closet, the best spot for the dressing table was in this corner.


To make the table, Cy started by drawing a level line the height that we wanted on each dressing table

Then he screwed two 2×4’s in the studs of the wall.

DIY dressing table


To give the table top support, he created a crossbar.

DIY dressing table

Then he cut the shape of the table top out of a 4×4 sheet of oak.

DIY dressing table

He trimmed the table top out with 1×2 pieces of poplar wood.

We thought the table may need a little extra support, so we nailed two 2×4’s underneath like legs.

DIY dressing table

For my skirt, I measured the distance from the bottom of the table top to the floor.


DIY dressing table

Then I folded my drop cloth in half and laid it out on the floor.  The cool thing about drop clothes is that they are “hemmed” all the way around.  So I didn’t have to sew a hem on my skirt.  I just cut my drop cloth in a way that would make the hems be on the sides and bottom of my dressing table.


DIY dressing table

I ironed the drop cloth before I cut it the length I needed.

DIY dressing table

I hot glued the “unfinished” side of the drop cloth to the backside of the 1×2 trim underneath the table.

There was really no rhyme or reason for how I glued it on.  I just folded a piece of the drop cloth over and then glued it.  (and burned my hands several times!)

Since I had two pieces of drop cloth, I hot glued one piece to half of the table, and the other piece to the other side of the table.

DIY dressing table

Lastly, I filled in the nail holes with wood filler, sanded them after they were dry, then painted the table top white.  I also applied a coat of poly to the top.

I LOVE my new dressing table.  It’s going to be so nice to sit down while I put on my makeup and fix my hair.

DIY dressing table

And I love that it is hidden in my master closet so that I don’t have to worry about leaving a mess on my bathroom sink countertop.  I can just hide it in here!  Smile


I will share some info about the accessories in this room soon!

DIY dressing table

Where do you do your hair and makeup?



Do you like using a dressing table?



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How to build a Fireplace Surround

October 11, 2012 AT 10:03 am 33 Comments


Thanks for all of your sweet comments on my Fireplace Makeover Reveal yesterday.

I wanted to hug all of your necks!  We (mostly Cy) worked so hard on that fireplace surround, so it was great for us to read all the great positive feedback.  I felt like y’all were giving us a bunch of “high fives”, and it was awesome.  Smile

If you came to my house to see the fireplace in person, you and I would look something like this…

And then we would go get a Coke at McDonald’s to celebrate, and probably eat chocolate too.


Today, I want to show you the steps we took in creating our fireplace surround.

how to create a fireplace surround

Cy had to get pretty creative to make it work, but he did it.

We were using this picture as our inspiration…




There were two problem areas on our fireplace.

1.  The brick stuck out in two different places.

how to create a fireplace surround

2.  The vents were going to need to be covered up by the surround.

Cy started the project by building a frame above the mantle ledge to create a flat surface between the two places where the brick stuck out.

how to create a fireplace surround


To attach the wood to the brick you need to first drill a hole in the brick with a concrete drill bit.  Then drill through the wood as well.

how to create a fireplace surround

Next, add PL Adhesive by Locktite to the back of the wood…

how to create a fireplace surround

Then attach the wood to the brick using a concrete screw.

how to create a fireplace surround

The brick on top of the fireplace stuck out a bit, so Cy had to come up with a way to create a flat surface on the front.

how to create a fireplace surround


He used his level to help him figure it out.

how to create a fireplace surround

By attaching a “filler” piece to the 2×4, he was able to create a level surface to attach the plywood to.


how to create a fireplace surround

Once he had his frame, he added a large piece of cabinet grade birch plywood to it.

how to create a fireplace surround

Next, we added 1×6 boards of Poplar wood to create the “planks.”  You could use pine or mdf boards to save money because you will be painting them.

how to create a fireplace surround

If you put nickels between each board as you attach them, it creates nice even spacing between each board.

how to create a fireplace surround

Next, Cy began attaching ripped pieces of 2×4’s below the mantle (the same way he did above the mantle) to create a frame to attach the birch plywood to.

how to create a fireplace surround

He cut and attached birch plywood directly below the mantle…

how to create a fireplace surround

And down both sides of the fireplace to cover the vents…

how to create a fireplace surround

Because we wanted to cover the vents, we had to attach the wood a little bit closer to the fireplace opening than we would have liked.  We only have about 4 inches between the wood and the fireplace opening on the sides.  Therefore, it technically cannot be a working fireplace.  It doesn’t work right now anyway, so we are okay with that.

how to create a fireplace surround

Cy added a 2×4 to the front brick ledge and trimmed it out with the birch plywood to create the mantle.

how to create a fireplace surround

how to create a fireplace surround

Next he covered up the mantle and the sides of the fireplace with ripped 1×6 poplar boards to fit.

how to create a fireplace surround

He also added 1×4 poplar boards to picture frame the planks above the to create a fireplace surround

Then there was a lot of adding decorative trim to the fireplace.

how to create a fireplace surround


It is really up to you how you want to trim out your fireplace.  We just chose the pieces we liked and added them.

how to create a fireplace surround

After Cy finished trimming everything out, he caulked all of the crevices.  Don’t forget to caulk!  It makes a world of difference!!

I forgot to take an after picture of the picture molding that Cy add with 1/2 x 3 inch poplar, but you can see it in the picture below.

how to create a fireplace surround


I painted the wood with two good coats of white paint, and the brick with Ebony Fields by Valspar.  It’s a gorgeous blackish, grayish, brownish color.  Smile

Cy also cleaned out the inside of the fireplace and spray painted it with a high heat spray paint.

And we were finished!how to create a fireplace surround

You can see in this picture that I also painted our front door the same color as the brick. It really made a huge difference in the space.

how to create a fireplace surround

Hopefully I can get the mantle decorated soon and share it with you.

If I left anything out, or if you have any questions about this process, feel free to ask!

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Dresser turned Vanity Makeover

September 2, 2012 AT 10:19 pm 66 Comments


I am soooo very excited to show you this project!

How to turn a dresser into a vanity.

I gave you a sneak peek of something I was painting last week.

It was our bathroom vanity!  You know…the one that we just re-did?

Yep!  We re-did it again!

(I just started singing Brittany Spears’ “Oops, I did it again” in my head.)  Smile


The second makeover turned out WAY better than the first.


Let’s take a look back shall we?

dresser turned vanity

We bought this dresser at a thrift store last fall for $50.

I immediately knew that I wanted to turn it into a vanity for our master bathroom.

I was picturing something beautiful in my head.  Like this…


Cy worked really hard on sanding and staining our dresser…

dresser turned vanity

He added a drop in sink…

dresser turned vanity

It really was beautiful.  I loved it.

turning a dresser into a vanity

But as we continued to work on the bathroom, something wasn’t jivin’ and I couldn’t put my finger on it.

I loved the hard wood floors…

utility grade floors

I loved the faux wood beams and white washed brick

bathroom makeover

I loved the claw foot tub….

claw foot tub


But there was something about that vanity that wasn’t sitting well with me.

dresser turned vanity

I think I was having trouble with the dark cherry stain.  It just wasn’t working with the walnut floor and beams.

I started thinking about painting it, but I didn’t want to tell Cy.

He was going to kill me.

But it kept bugging me.

And bugging me.

I mentioned to Cy that I sort of wanted to paint it.  And guess what?  I’m still livin’!

I guess after being married to me for 15 years, nothing really surprises him any more.  Smile

So then I started rolling around in my head, “What color do I want to paint it?”

And here is what I decided on…

Annie Sloan Chalk Paint in French Linen.

dresser turned vanity


(If I do say so myself!)

I was able to add the original hardware back on the vanity, and it looks great.


french linen

It is the exact contrast I need between the vanity and the flooring.  I was probably more giddy about this project than any other that I have done during our renovation.turning a dresser into a vanity

I was DYING to show you guys last week!  It is EXACTLY what I was envisioning for my bathroom, and I am SOOOO glad I painted it!

So here is my advice to you for what it is worth.

If something isn’t jivin’ in your décor…change it! 

Trust your gut!

Just do it!

You’ll be so glad you did.  I know I am. Smile


Let’s look back and the transformation of this $50 dresser…


How to turn a dresser into a vanity


Tomorrow, I will show you how I painted the dresser.  It was super easy.

I will also give you a breakdown of the total cost of this dresser turned vanity.


So what do you think?

Do you like it better stained or painted?

Linking this project to…

Home Stories A2Z

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How to White Wash Brick {Bathroom Update}

August 22, 2012 AT 4:28 pm 116 Comments


how to white wash brick

For anyone who is new to my blog, my family lives in a 1400 sq ft ranch that we are updating and adding on to.

The addition to the house includes a master bedroom and bath downstairs and two bedrooms and a bath upstairs.

how to white wash brick

When we added our master bedroom and bath to the side of the house, I knew I wanted to leave the brick wall exposed instead of covering it up.

how to white wash brick


The only problem was the brick was not pretty.  If you can see where the lamp is shining on the brick, it is very orange-y.

how to white wash brick

It looks a little darker in the picture below, but it definitely had an orange hue to it.  Try as I might, I didn’t think I could decorate around orange brick.

how to white wash brick

So at about 11:30 pm the other night, I got a hankering to white wash the brick.

I posted about my idea on my Beneath My Heart facebook page, and I got a bunch of “Yeah!  Do it!”

So full of courage, I mixed my wall color paint (SW Natural Choice) half and half with water.

I actually used my glass measuring cup, added two cups of water and two cups of paint, then mixed them together.

It gives you a milky consistency.

(Some people white wash with a lime and salt mixture, but not I.)

Then I just painted the brick with the mixture.  Be sure to put down a drop cloth because it can get really messy!

It goes on white, but as the white wash dries, the brick color begins to show through.

Here is what the brick looked like with the first coat of white wash on it.


how to white wash brick

It looked really good, and I was excited about the process.  I shared the pic on my facebook page again, and everyone gave me big thumbs up!


how to white wash brick

But the brick color still showed through a little too much for me.  I needed the brick to be a little whiter.

The paint mixture had thickened up a little by the time I got to the bottom of the measuring cup, so I added a little more water.  I had to do this several times.  I would add a little more paint, then water it down.  There is no perfect formula.  You just want to water down your paint color



It was about midnight, and Cy was tiling the shower next to me.  I add the second coat of white wash on and the brick turned completely white.

It wasn’t pretty.  I said to Cy, “Oh no!  I’ve ruined it!  The brick is going to be completely white!”

But there was nothing I could do at that point, so I had to finish.

Luckily, as I continued to paint up the wall, the brick below me began to dry and the brick color began to show through.  WHEW!  It just takes a minute for the brick to soak up the paint to give it that white washed look.

how to white wash brick

I was so relieved!  And I was very satisfied with how it turned out.  You can still see the detail of the brick, but it got rid of the orange color.  And it gives me a more neutral palette to decorate around.


how to white wash brick

We have not finished the trim work around the doorway or the ceiling.

Cy will finish that this week.

how to white wash brick

I definitely love it!  And now I cannot wait to white wash my orange brick fireplace!

I plan on doing that in the next couple of weeks.  Can’t wait to share it with you!

how to white wash brick

Here is a little white washed brick “eye candy”

for you!

white washed brick


white washed brick


White washed brick.


So what do you think? 

Do you like the brick natural or white washed? 

(You won’t hurt my feelings.)  Smile

Have you ever white washed brick before?



how to white wash brick

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How to Refinish an Antique Claw Foot Tub {Check out my New Tub!}

July 9, 2012 AT 12:32 pm 88 Comments



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Last year, we found this great antique claw foot tub on Craigslist.


You can see the video HERE.

Well, it was finally time to refinish this baby!

So Cy set the tub up outside on some saw horses this past week.

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I’m not totally sure how completely safe this set up was, but it worked for us. Smile

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As you can see, the tub needed a little TLC.

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I took a picture of the bottom of the tub to show you when it was made.  How cool is that?

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Cy used an orbital sander, with 80 grit sander paper, at first to get the flakes off the outside of the tub.  With a cast iron tub, it is hard to get a perfectly smooth surface.

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Next, he sanded it with 120 grit sand paper, and then 220 grit to get it as smooth as he could.

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There were a few spots on the tub that sanded down to the metal, so he sprayed those spots with a spray primer so the paint would adhere.

Next, he chose to use white automotive paint from PPG that we had left over from another job that he had done a couple years ago.   Many people use automotive paint for the outside of the tub, but it is not necessary.

You could use the same tub and tile kit that we used on the inside of our tub (see below) on the outside of the tub if you wanted.claw foot tub 037

Aaaahhh…doesn’t it look beautiful already?

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Next, it was time to apply gel paint stripper on the inside of the tub.  Cy didn’t have gloves on at first, but he quickly put them on, along with safety glasses.  This stuff will eat your skin up!

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Let me tell you that my husband did this work in 100 degree temperatures!  It was BRUTAL!!!

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He spent hours in the sun stripping the inside of the tub.  This was the most difficult part of the whole process by far.

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He used a scrapper and wire brush to help strip off the paint.

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I kept bringing water and gatorade out to him about every 10 minutes.  The boys and I watched him work from the comfort of our air conditioning inside the house.

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He is such a hard worker!  I think I fell a little more in love with him that day. Smile

After he cleaned up all the paint residue from inside the tub, he used his sander again to smooth out the surface.

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He used 180 grit sand paper.

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You can see that there was rust around the drain.

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So Cy covered the rust with a spray primer/sealer.

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Here is the spray primer that he used.  This will keep the rust from coming back and help the paint to adhere to the metal.

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To  paint the inside of the tub, Cy used this Tub and Tile refinishing kit from Lowe’s.  It’s about $40 for a box, and we used almost two boxes.

Homax Quart Interior High Gloss Paint and Primer in One

We bought the spray on refinishing kit, but Cy said there is also a brush-on kit you can purchase as well.

You want to make sure you spray the epoxy paint on in small, smooth strokes.

We did three coats of epoxy, lightly scuffing with steel wool between each coat.  Cy also used a tack cloth between each coat to get any dust/steel wool particles off the surface.

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Notice the red towel Cy is holding?  It wasn’t for the tub, it was for his head because his sweat kept dripping into the tub.  That’s how hot it was!


For the claw feet, we just removed them from the tub and lightly sanded them before painting.  You can spray them with a primer first if you want, be we didn’t.

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We used some Valspar metallic spray paint at first

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I wasn’t crazy with the results.  It looked a little dull.

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I was hoping for a shinier, “chrome-ier” look on the feet, so I went back to Lowe’s and got Rustoleum’s metallic spray paint.


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I was super happy with the results!  I don’t know if you can tell the difference in the pictures, but the Rustoleum spray paint was definitely shinier than the Valspar spray paint.

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We left everything dry real good before bringing it back into the house.

Here is Cy hooking up the tub faucet.

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Here is Eli enjoying the running water we FINALLY have in our bathroom!   Woohoo!


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Now we have a beautiful claw foot tub to enjoy!

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I love the way it turned out!  We have about $250 dollars in this tub (minus the faucet), and I think it is just as beautiful as this claw foot tub that sells for about $1,200 at VintageTub.  And that is on the low end of prices.Bella Casa 54 Inch Cast Iron Classic Clawfoot Tub Wall Drillings

Cy also finished the window trim in the bathroom this weekend.  I will be posting a video tutorial of that soon.

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What do you think of our “new” claw foot tub?  Do you think the money we saved was worth all the hard work?

If you have any more questions about this process, just let me know!


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