Well, this is five months late, but I am finally revealing my new dining room! I had finished this room in October, but then never got to post it because of personal reasons (see this post for more).

My goals for this room were pretty straightforward:

  • lighten up the color scheme
  • create visual interest in a rather boring room
  • maintain the same amount of storage
  • create a casual modern feel
  • update the dated furniture

As I mentioned before, there aren’t a lot of elements to work with in my dining room, and on top of that I chose to keep the color scheme neutral. That combination could have easily resulted in a flat looking room. But I was able to counter the simplicity of the room with some patterns and textures that gave depth and life.

I’m pretty happy with how this room turned out considering my limited budget.

So without further ado, let’s see the photos!

Here are the before photos:




And here are the after photos!




Here’s a breakdown of the changes I made…


Hello, lovely readers… if there’s anyone left out there! You may have noticed I haven’t posted for awhile. I intentionally took a break from this blog after experiencing a sudden tragedy in our family shortly after my last post. During the week of Thanksgiving, my mother suffered an accident that took her life. I was very, very close with my mom, and she lived a mere 0.8 miles from our home (yes, we actually measured it on the odometer once :) ). We talked every day and saw each other most days, even if it was just a quick visit.

My mom was my BIGGEST supporter in my design endeavors, wanting to get updates on all of the projects I was working on and going antiquing with me every chance she could. She was likely the only person who regularly read this blog too :) . Because that’s what mothers do, they support their children no matter what!

We had recently been working closely together on a makeover for her guest room which she was really excited about. We were almost finished making an upholsterd headboard for her bed and were heading out to buy an armoire off Craigslist for her new room when she suffered a mild fall that would suddenly take her life a few hours later.

She was healthy and active and it was a shock to all who knew her. She was a two-time breast cancer survivor, and yet a small accident took her life. It doesn’t seem to make sense! But in the midst of my sadness, shock and regret, I hold onto the hope I have from knowing that she was a Christian with a strong faith in God which means she is in heaven. She is now filled with peace, joy and healing, and my heart can rest in that assurance!

Since her passing, my time has been busy trying to help my dad learn how to live on his own after losing his partner of 45 years! I have also been hesitant to move forward with my design projects since I was right in the middle of working on one with my mom at the time of her accident. For awhile, every time I thought about it I was filled with sadness over the reminder that she is no longer here to discuss it with me.

But I am grateful that I’m now ready to pick up where I left off with my design plans! I had been planning a redo of my closet right before my mom’s accident, and I finally finished it last week. Here are the before photos…




And here’s my new closet…


My dining room reveal is almost ready, I’m just waiting on one thing. Unfortunately, that one thing is the result of an unexpected accident. A few weeks ago, my son was playing with our dog in the dining room and he accidentally broke the light fixture we have in the room. We had installed that pendant light about seven years ago, and while it wasn’t my favorite choice for lighting in the dining room, it still worked with the design. So in an effort to stay on budget I had decided to just keep it in the room as is. That was until my son’s incident. The bad news is I now have to spend more money on my makeover. The good news is I got to search for a pendant I liked better than what was there :) .

I have found a pendant light that I just love but is still reasonably priced. It’s on it’s way now so as soon as it’s delivered we’ll install it, and then I’ll be ready to reveal my new dining room!

In the meantime, I’ll share some new projects that I’ve started on…

I have a new makeover that I’m working on for my mom. It’s an interesting and challenging project which I love! She is using one of the bedrooms in her home as a guest bedroom/photography studio. My mom is an avid nature photographer and she uses this room to store her fairly large photo printer, inks, paper, mats and frames. She also likes to hang her photos on the wall in here so she can step back and see how they look printed out and matted.

At that same time, this room serves as a guest room for visitors. So there are a couple different functions happening in here.

This is what her room looks like right now:



A big focus of this room will be creating a way for her to easily display and change her photos on the wall.

Her photos are often filled with color, so it made sense to keep the color scheme of the room simple and mostly neutral so that the colors in her photos aren’t “fighting with” all of the colors in the room. The only color I have added to the palette is navy since it works well with all other colors (… some people even consider navy to officially be a neutral color). This color scheme will set a neutral backdrop for her many colorful photos and help them pop in the room.

Her budget is fairly limited, but she has agreed to pitch in where she can to do some projects in order to help reduce the cost.

Despite the challenges and limitations, I’ve come up with an exciting plan for her room. Here’s the design board:


I will be sharing some DIY projects for this room that will include furniture makeovers and a special project for displaying her photos.



This is a photo of our old dining room table. We bought it many years ago and it now just looks boring and dated. What I do love about this table are the hidden extensions, and because of that reason alone I considered keeping it. But honestly, I just no longer like the overall look, and it’s only partly solid wood the rest is veneer so it just wasn’t worth saving.

I started looking for a new dining table and found a few I liked, but West Elm’s Emmerson table ranked at the top of my list.


Unfortunately, the $1300 price tag (and that doesn’t include tax or shipping!) ranked at the bottom of my list.

After not finding anything I liked in my budget, I decided I had no choice but to make my own dining room table.