Play Kitchen Before & After

In 2013 while we were living in Denver, we had a lot of space to accumulate odd pieces from Craigslist that we saw potential in. Enter this free hutch-ish thing I found on the side of the road. It might be hard to see from these before pictures but this thing was a real piece of trash. It had actually been sitting in the snow, the wood was wet and warped and pretty sad looking. However, we knew we wanted to make a play kitchen for Trudy and thought this might be perfect! 

We took the wheels off the bottom and realized that the countertop was still too high for our daughter. We removed the drawer and cut off about 6 inches of wood where the drawer was to make that the new countertop height. We took the doors off and all the framing and relocated the drawer to the bottom. We reframed the bottom half so that we could add an oven door. We cut the drawer off the top and replaced the counter with a new piece of wood. There was a lot of restoration that we had to do because the wood was warped and split in places. If we had to do it all over again... we'd probably just build it from scratch because it was a lot of work. 

We laid the white subway tile in the back and then stained some wood for a shelf. The shelf is really convenient, Trudy loves to put anything and everything on it.

We added the light at the top, it works out great and makes the whole thing feel even more adult like. It's one of Trudy's favorite parts to show her friends.

The top (stove and sink), well the top was... fun. I mean that sarcastically too. It was a lot of trial and error. We found the faucet at ReStore and sprayed it with silver spray paint. We learned the hard way that just because the paint is silver doesn't mean it will look like nickel. We bought a dog dish for the sink because a regular size bowl would have been too deep for the right scale.

We cut rings out of wood for the burners and then made slots for little pieces of aluminum. We looked at tons of play kitchens and wanted to stick with a very realistic theme so we sprayed all those parts black to make them look like real burners. 

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The oven door was made out of mdf and then covered in faux stainless steel contact paper from Amazon. The handle on the oven is from Home Depot (I wish that I only had to buy one piece every time I needed hardware!). The little window in the oven door is plexi glass. We painted the inside of the oven black as well as the back of the oven door.

Inside the oven is a rack that we created from two small racks that we found at Re-Store. We sprayed them black and they work perfectly for Trudy's little cookie sheet to sit on. The light that Grant put inside the oven is so adorable. The push button is my favorite part.

I wanted the kitchen to be gender neutral but I had to put a little girliness somewhere. I painted the inside of the bottom drawer a lilac shade of purple. It's such a fun surprise to see when you open the drawer. To keep everything from sliding around, I kept some boxes and wrapped the inside of them. I kind of hated wrapping those boxes but it was worth it because it keeps things pretty and also organized.

Grant did such a good job at keeping the wiring for both lights so minimal. I love the secret light switch in the back.

And just because the change is so drastic, one last before and after shot (Extreme Makeover Edition).

I've taken quite a long blogging break. We finished this play kitchen in 2014! Coming to this draft a few weeks ago was so fun though. I've gone back and forth so much about blogging and I've just realized that for me... it is worth it to remember all the projects we've done. I look forward to posting more just so we can have a more thorough journal of all our projects. :)

LInked up here.

My All Time Beauty Favorites

With the simplifying theme of my life right now, I've been getting rid of anything I don't need or love. I have favorites on my mind. I do love buying the same thing over because then I know that I really love it. Every product above I've bought over and over and over. They are worth my pennies!

Anastasia Brow Wiz: If you're someone who fills in your brows, you know that finding an ashy color is the trick to making them look authentic and natural. The color selection Anastasia provides is spot on and the wear with this pencil is kind of incredible. On nights where I'm lazy and don't wash my face, I can wake up and my brows will still look untouched. The spoolie on the end is just perfect.

NYX Butter Gloss: I am not and have never been a gloss girl but I love these! I have almost every color. They aren't too thick and they last a long time. The colors are SO fun and bright. NYX is actually one of my favorite brands all around. Great products for the best prices.

Becca Shimmering Skin Perfector: My favorite product ever ever ever ever! I have it in moonstone and it's the perfect color. It gives me the most believable glow and makes highlighting a cinch. All I need is the tiniest amount. And I mean like... the size of a nerd (the candy). The bottle lasts forever.

NYX Blush: Not much to say other than... great pigment, great colors and great prices. I even have a reddish orange shade that is so different than any blush I've ever seen, so on trend and fun.

Jane Iredale Pure Pressed Powder: Magic in a compact. I've been wearing it for more than 10 years. It's not just makeup, it's skincare too. It looks like skin on. It's everything you'd want it to be. I LOVE it!

Chanel Chance Eau de Tendre: Just my perfect smell. To me... its perfect. 

Check out my favorite Sephora purchase here.

What are your favorites?

The Settee Before & After

So our lovely settee is the third completed project in our room. Besides really really small reupholstery projects, this was our first REAL reupholstery job. We felt ambitious taking on a tufted piece for our first but with all the helpful tutorials online... we were just excited to get started. We actually finished this project last Thanksgiving. 

We found the settee on Craigslist years ago and I believe we paid $40 for it. Smaller benches and settees are my favorite things to look for on Craigslist. It's sad that I didn't get better 'before' pictures (this is the only one I have! sweet baby Trudy...) because while it might look okay above... it was DISGUSTING! All the dirt, grime and stains just grossed me out. The frame was broken as well as one of the legs. You could not sit on it (unless you were under 10 lbs :)). Nail heads were missing and there were holes in the fabric. 

Finding the right fabric was HUGE and I wasn't used to the typical price range for upholstery fabric. I stumbled upon the upholstery fabric that we ended up using, towards the beginning of my search. I fell in love with the beautiful pattern, I loved the raised velvet and then the color combination is actually my very favorite. Navy and kelly green!? Come on! But I wasn't sure if I could find something that I liked just as much and for a better price. As my searching went on, I envisioned what it would be like to take all the time and effort in reupholstering the settee in a fabric that I liked for a better price and that's when I knew that I just had to buckle down and choose my favorite, something I LOVED. Better to be safe than sorry! And I've never regretted it. I absolutely LOVE the fabric.

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I bought the fabric from an Etsy shop called FabulessFabrics and I really did get a great deal. Eight months later I saw these pillows pop up on One Kings Lane and realized even more that I scored big time. 

The actual process wasn't too bad, but maybe it would have been worse if I didn't have my husband. I mean, he is the one who helped to get things so tight and perfect for the stapling. He also did a great job at taking pictures of the all the fabric while we slowly took it a part. It helped so much to be able to go back and look at the pictures as we cut different pieces to size and stapled. For the legs, we considered all options and in the end painting them black just seemed like the natural way to go. I'm glad we did too, it feels more unique.

I have to apologize for the awkward angles, unfortunately they are the best I can do for the space we are in. One day we'll have more room to spread everything out. I could have chosen to keep this settee wrapped up in the garage when we first moved in but I just couldn't. I love seeing it every day... even if it gives me a teeny tiny walk way between it and the bed!

Linked up here.

Nightstand Dressers Before & After

In February of last year, while living in Denver, we found these two dressers. We had been in the process of selling our bedroom set and needed to find a matching pair of dressers. I have loved the idea of dressers as nightstands and spent a few months searching (finding a matching pair is hard!). I finally came across these and I believe we paid $30 for the pair. We weren't able to start working on them until May when we were moved in here and all settled in.

I also knew if I didn't find a pair with beautiful wood... I would paint the dressers grey. The little rim that borders the drawers was kind of a fun extra detail that we painted white. To start out we sanded both dressers and all eight drawers until they were nice and smooth.

All the drawers had different vintage floral patterns for drawer liners and they were not fun to take out. Who knows how long they'd been there and there was a film of sticky ickyness after the paper was pulled up.

I don't have pictures of the paint process but we primed them both and then painted them both with oil based paint. We have such a love/hate relationship with that stuff. It's like.... we know it would be dumb to use any other paint (so durable and also pretty) but cleanup is a *****.

I'm so not a professional photographer or editor so I feel like my pictures look lame. But here there are nonetheless. Since the headboard is an upcoming project, you'll see our cute box spring... all in due time ;)

I see so many beautiful nightstand vignettes and pin them all the time, but for my nightstand... it's not realistic. I want all my books, pictures and jewelry right there. So I kind of just pile it all on. Also, I love how back in the 80's, chick flicks always seemed to include a picture of a teenage girl's boyfriend on their nightstand. Anyone know what I'm talking about? Anyway I've loved the idea ever since I can remember and that's why I have my sweetie in that rad malachite frame. Totally my favorite part.

What could possibly be better than gold shiny paper and white abstract polka dots? I know. It's so satisfying to see every day!