Office/Guest Room Rearranging

Continuing from the Office Closet Storage Post, the entire room had to be re-arranged.

This is how it looked empty and moving in.

I don’t have a before photo of the re-arranging but you can see that the bed is where the chaise was and Robert’s desk is on the left.

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You can see how full and packed it was.

We found out we were getting a renter as we were finishing up the closet.

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So I knew we had to change the room around because it was just so crowded.

I also knew for a while that I was going to have to sell my wonderful desk. 😦 It was just too big for the condo and I knew that I needed to get a smaller desk.

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I bought the large desk for $550 (including tax etc.) and I sold it for $300. Which is about half, but since we were going to have a renter we would more than make up what I bought it for.

I bought this smaller desk a few weeks ago for $50.

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The legs were a bit wobbly but I thought I would be able to glue it or something.

Fun story, I finally put it together a week after I got it (since we were re-arranging it was easier to leave it taken down), and I hated it…

It’s really pretty. It just isn’t for me. So I sold it for $40. Which is $10 less than I got it for but it was worth it for the experience.

It’s actually for the better right now since we have a renter for the next 1-4 months and it gives more room in the office/guest room.

Here is what it looks like now.

 

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We have gotten rid of some books, completely re-arranged the room, bought a dresser, (soon a mirror and a clothes hanger), and new bedding.

I was searching high and low (I went to 12 thrift stores in 2 days) for a duvet cover of any size I could cut down. (Post coming soon).

Also, the dresser post coming soon as well.

Christmas Decorating

Since it is my first year as a full fledged adult, you know, making your own dentist appointments, having your own car insurance under your name, owning a home, having insane amounts of bills. You know, adulting.

Anyway…since it is my first year as a full fledged adult I wanted to decorate and organize my Christmas decorations precisely how I want it rather than getting ornaments I kinda like and will donate later.

We went out to buy a tree. But I refused to pay $80 for a 6 foot tree. So Robert found out that Lowes had trees for $43. So much better. And it fit in the car!

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We wanted a tall (6 feet) and fairly thin. We got it in the car no problem.

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I think it fits perfectly in the condo.

My grandmother has a tradition of putting up her Christmas Village every year the day after Thanksgiving. I decided I wanted a Christmas Village of my own but I didn’t have room for such large houses. So I found a fairly mini village.

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We also had cocoa during decorating.

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Robert had to make strings for our bulbs that didn’t already have string (we have regular string now but didn’t at the time). But the cat though differently.

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I love my stocking (Robert’s is on the way.) And the beautiful flowers in the tree.

And everything together!

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We also did gingerbread houses!

And our completed houses! Mine left, Robert’s right

I really like how it turned out.

Thanks for joining me on a Christmas decorations tour!

DIY Christmas Tree Skirt

It is now Christmas decoration, song, and present season in stores. Since this is the first year I will be having Christmas in my own home I really wanted to make it beautiful and classy.

I am going to get a real tree as my first Christmas tree as a full-fledged adult. But I needed a tree skirt (and about a million other pretty Christmas decorations). I was looking at all the different tree skirts and I didn’t like too many of them. Lots of them had ruffles or linen fabric which I didn’t like.

But I found this one which I thought was pretty. It was $29.99.

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However it was that weird linen blend. I was also on a sewing kick so I decided I wanted to make my own tree skirt.

I still had just enough fabric from reupholstering my dining chairs:

So I decided to make one. A quick trip to JoAnn’s and I found some pretty fabric for the other side so it could be reversible and some cording for the edge. Everything including the remnant from the dining chairs (besides labor) was about $25. But I got exactly what I wanted.

You would think it would be easy to make a circle. It is and isn’t I did the whole string and pen trick which made it a whole lot easier. Then I cut out the rest of the fabric. I made the skirt as large as my remnant from the dining chairs would let me. I don’t know what the traditional size is but I think it is roughly the same.

Then I ironed the edges under so they would be easier to sew and there wouldn’t be any weird puckers.

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Then I pinned some of the cording on to see how it would look and I also cut the opening using a small salad plate to get an accurate circle.

I sew them together and I just love how pretty this seam looked after I ironed it down.

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After sewing everything up I made little tie closures and sewed them on so they wouldn’t show the edge. I could have sewn them inside the fabric but I had already sewn up the openings.

 

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And here is the finished product!

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And, it is, of course, reversible!

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I am super proud of myself. I feel very accomplished.

I think I am still on the sewing kick and I am going to make pillow bows, a stocking for Maia, and a table runner.

Thanks for reading. Don’t forget to subscribe. I will be uploading my DIY pillow bows soon!

Upholstering My Antique Dining Chairs

My last post featured all the new furniture I bought. And among them was my 4 “new” dining chairs for $15 each.

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Do you see a problem with them? Correct, it is not upholstered. But with $30 in foam and another $30 in fabric, the chairs cost a total of $120. I assume that when we sell them we can sell each for $30 at least and make back the cost of them.

While I love these and they are antique, my dream chairs are these or a variation of these:

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Parsons Chairs

But each one of those is at least $90 and can be all the way up to $200. Which is too rich for my blood currently.

So, in the mean time I get to practice upholstering and doing projects.

I took Robert to JoAnn Fabrics and of course we looked at all of them and decided we only liked one. Which was custom order only. Of course. The funny part was it was the same price (and same 50% discount) as all the rest of the “regular” fabric. Just the inconvenience of shipping it.

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Eaton Square. It doesn’t look like much here but it is cream with linen “lines”.

I couldn’t get the 1.5 yards I needed so I bought 2 yards instead. I will most likely use it for my “shoe chair” I also recently got at a thrift store.

I had to wait until after our dance convention to upholster them but I did asap. Side note, cutting foam is difficult.

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You can see on the top right of the cushion that it had a few issues being cut. But it isn’t too noticable.

Here is the before and after.

 

I think they look really nice. And if we ever sell them I think they will be well received.

Here they are all finished and with the dining table.

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Buying MORE Furniture

So…..

I bought more furniture.

2 side tables, 4 chairs, and a headboard and footboard to be exact.

How does it all fit in the house you ask? Well, I sell some and move others.

But! In my defense, we did need the 4 dining chairs even though those were not what I was initially buying furniture for.

The company Antique or Unique is a online company who purchases antique and vintage wood furniture from individual parties and sells it online. This way he keeps his overhead low.

Which is exactly why I follow him on Facebook. So, on Saturday I was scrolling through my Facebook feed and I found this:

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It was $50 and I had to have it. I asked Robert and he said yes so we drove 45 minutes one way.

It was the 1940’s mahogany with the same drawer pull as my coffee table and everything else in my house.

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See, it matches.

I had decided it would replace the leather insert side table in the living room.

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While I was looking at the drop-leaf table I saw this one right near it for $45.

14900511_1313417458700182_7393737900334074766_nAnd it matched even better. So I decided to get both and Robert would have the drop-leaf table as his new nightstand.

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I told Robert on the drive there I could only get 2 things which is one more than we originally were going to the warehouse for. Unless we find dining chairs, then I could get 4 of those also.

So as we were checking out. I saw the chairs in the back and asked how much each one was. I was thinking also $30 or $40. BUT! He said all of his chairs were $15 each. I excused myself and went over to them.

We got 4.

They don’t have any cushion or upholstery (post coming later) so we are going to get fabric soon.

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The small pumpkin is for the cat.

I ended up with exactly what Robert and I agreed on me being allowed to get. Though really, I would have gotten more if I saw more things I liked.

While we were there I saw a twin mahogany headboard and footboard for $125. Which I wanted to replace the brass one I had previously. (Free with the bed.)

 

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Not very pretty since everything else I have is mahogany. But I had actually seen the exact same one (actually there were 2) at a thrift store where I live for $50. So the next day I went over and promptly bought it.

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I think it looks beautiful. Full twin bed post coming later.

I love everything. All of it for $250 including the upholstery fabric and supplies. 🙂

 

Built-ins Are Not What You Think

We think of built in bookshelves and cabinetry as a luxury or opulent since they are typically in very old and often grand homes.  Why aren’t they built now? And are they really opulent?

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Built-in Cabinets

In this modern day and age it is quite expensive to commission a carpenter to install solid wood or mahogany  bookshelves and cabinets. Why? Because skilled trades such as that are becoming obsolete and are being replaced with either automation or easier building projects.

One of the other major reasons it isn’t done anymore is because the materials needed like mahogany or cherry are much more expensive to purchase.

And any homes with these built-ins preexisting are already expensive since they are so old and typically near the cities.

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In a 1912 Craftsman in Portland, OR

So, to answer the question, Yes. Built-ins are expensive for many reasons and therefore opulent, grand, and luxurious these days.

But, what about when these homes were first built in the early 1900s?

These homes and subsequently their built-ins were made for the working class, not the upper class.

Why? Because buying furniture was expensive and difficult to move when the owners relocated. So, the less furniture they had to buy and take with them the cheaper it was.

During the early 1900s when there was a great influx of people to America and specifically the Pacific Northwest contractors and builders realized that when they made these smaller bungalow and Craftsman homes (popular at the time) they needed to include built-in furniture to accommodate the working class.

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This Built-in Buffet is beautiful.

If you are interested in learning more about old houses and styles wait for a future post of mine or check out this book , Classic Houses Of Seattle.

What do you think of built-ins? I find them exquisite and full of history and stories.

A Side Table In Need Of Love

After the Living Room Tetris was finished I found this side table for $5. The top is wood with a leather insert. It is water damaged and there is no stain or polyurethane on the wood. So it must be refinished.

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I had to get it though. It was close (and about 8pm and dark outside) to where I lived so I said I could go get it right now. He was free.

I couldn’t believe I got this vintage side table for$5. Even though it does need a lot of work.

Currently it is being used as a side table and hopefully soon I will refinish it. So far I have been too busy (and broke) to get the tools needed to refinish it.

Coffee Table from Craigslist at Midnight

First, I live about 20 minutes north of Seattle. During the whole Living Room Tetris Part 1, 2 and 3 I needed a new coffee table.

I searched through about 1,000+ photos and items for sale and I actually found this one:

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It was beautiful and we went and saw it. I would have gotten it except the pattern was leaves rather than filigree. And unfortunately leaves are not the theme of what I am going for.

After I called my mom for the 2nd chair I kept looking on OfferUp and found this.

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It was in Kent which is about 30 minutes south of Seattle. Which from my house was about 50 minutes.

We were already in Seattle at a friend’s house and would be leaving until about midnight. But this was even further South. So I didn’t want to have to drive all the way down when I could just drive half way. So I messaged the lady. She said we could come at 12:45 at night! Yes it was sketchy, but I had Robert with me and she was going to meet me outside her apartment complex.

I tried to put her at ease by talking about the traffic patterns and how its easier tonight rather than tomorrow day time. Hoping she would know that I wasn’t a serial killer.

We finally got home about 1:15. But by then I had all my lovely furniture. And it was $10, and it matched my Drexel side table and dresser. I was thrilled. Now if only we could sell the other couch set.

During the Tetris in the living room this table had to be left in the hallway.

I was beginning to take up every room in the house including non-rooms! But as you know from parts 1,2,3 of the Lving Room Tetris game we sold the couches and this is what it looks like now!

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I think it fits in nicely.

It is so much nicer in size than the huge coffee table from before.