Thursday, August 15, 2013

My New Dining Room!

For a while now, I've been itching to update our dining room. It's the first room you see from our front door and since it's a rarely used room in our house it has been horribly neglected. When we first moved in, the dining room was one of only two rooms in the house that weren't yellow. (And it wasn't just one shade of yellow. Each room was a different color of yellow. Lovely.) I rushed to find a color for this room (as I did for every room in the house) when we moved in. We had used a chocolate color for our great room in our old house so I wanted a lighter wall color in this house. When I chose the wall color it seemed so light (compared to what I was used to) and I really liked it.

I found heavy curtains at Pier 1 that were very much my style in our old house and I liked the look of them. And then I hung the gallery wall and called the room done. That is until it started feeling like a dark cave in there! The front room has a large window and gets amazing morning sun but not much light in the afternoon/evening. So the room always felt dark. I always felt the the room needed more pops of color but I could never figure out where to put color.

Moving in 3 years ago.

 Please excuse the mess on the table. Decorations had already been removed from my buffet in order to start painting when I realized that I needed to take some "before pictures". 
 Along with the mess on the table, this picture also has the new curtains hanging so this is a really bad before picture!
 Here's a pic from Cayden's party of the other side of the room.  I still think it's pretty. It was just too dark.

I had in my head that I wanted to paint light grey walls in the dining room and entryway. And I really wanted to do bright yellow/white graphic curtains. Well, finding yellow/white graphic curtains is harder than you would expect. The only ones I could find were way out of my price range online. So one day at Hobby Lobby a fabric caught my eye and I decided that maybe I should just make curtains. (That's what I've done in 3 other rooms in the house since I never can find pre-made curtains that I like.)  I asked the lady at Hobby Lobby to cut 86 inches (I believe) of fabric. I knew I wanted 84" curtains and gave myself 2" of seam allowance. I asked if it was returnable if I decided I didn't love the fabric in the house. She assured me that as long as I didn't cut it, I could return it. I took my trusty 40% off coupon to the front and got my curtain "panel" for $15!

I hung it on the current rod with safety pins and left it like that for a couple weeks to make sure I loved it. I did. So I sent Jonathan and my dad back out to Hobby Lobby with exact specifications for what to buy. (I was neck deep in party decorations/food prep for Cayden's party the next day and the guys were nice enough to run errands.) This was one of those projects that I just HAD to have done at the last minute. You know how that is, right? The nice thing is since I had them cut separately, the fabric was already cut to the length I needed for each panel. The sides didn't need to be hemmed, so I just used hem tape for a top and bottom hem and then used drapery clips to hang it from the curtain rod. These were the easiest curtains I have made yet! I love how they turned out!
You can see how they are hung in this picture. 

I picked up two paint color swatches from Benjamin Moore. One was Moonshine and one was Grey Owl. Both of these colors were used by my favorite home bloggers and I loved how their walls looked. Grey is so hard to choose! You don't want it to be too green or too blue. I held both swatches up to the fabric and decided on the Grey Owl. And I LOVE it. Jonathan thought it looked a bit too white on the walls when my dad painted a few spots on the wall because next to the old color, it did look white. But once it covered the entire wall, it looked very grey.

My mom and I ran out to Hobby Lobby. So glad it's only 5 minutes away since it's my favorite home store! And we found a few pops of yellow for me to add to the room to tie in the curatins, including fabric that I made into a runner for my table. (Our Ikea table is massive and normal table runners are way too short for it so I had to make my own.)  I love the bird cage because it's so not "me". It didn't have a price tag on it at the store and it was the last one and I was convinced it was going to be $50/$60 (like the black ones on the same table) and I would have to put it back but I went ahead and asked the cashier and found out it was $34 but on sale for 50% off so I got it for $17!! I was so excited! I'd like to drop it down a bit from the ceiling but I haven't found the right chain yet. (Lowe's had a 10 foot for $10. Um no.) I am absolutely in love with this room now!  It honestly feels like the room doubled in size and it's not just in the background anymore. It's open and part of the house.
 I raised the curtain rod because I love the look of curtains hung high. (I still love the look of my windows without the blinds. That also helped to get more light in this room!)

 Looking down the hall toward the front door. The yellow "B" used to be hung at our old house and was a gold color. My dad spray painted it yellow and I love how it looks. (Can you tell my dad enjoys doing projects around the house when they stay to watch the kids?) My next idea is to paint a dark stain on the stairway handrail. I love the idea of it tying into the dark pops in the room and the ORB doorknob. 
 The middle family picture will be switched out as soon as I can decide on which family picture from C's photo shoot I want to have made into a wrap! I think the gallery wall pops so much better against the lighter walls. Love this look!
 It's so hard to get pictures of this room because so much light comes in now with my airy curtains!
 This is my view coming down the stairs each morning and I love it!

I'm thrilled with how a gallon of paint made our entire downstairs feel like an entirely new house! It is a difference between night and day! Here's hoping our guests enjoy the changes as much as we do!

Linking to Beneath My Heart Best DIY of August Party.

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