Spring Cleaning Time Again

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Every spring I get in a super spring cleaning mode, simplify everything turns out to be my motto. I get so far then I start to slow down. This year I have already purged a couple of bags full of things and have my whole attic to go through. My husband and I are looking to buy a farm and need to purge all of the clothes my kids have outgrown that I have been keeping for the next kid. I will go through and keep a few things but I’m tired of holding on to stuff, it is time for it to go and to finish adding on to our house.

So this spring my goals are to

  • Clean the attic out
  • Donate or sell or trash what I don’t need
  • Try to clean one area each week (that way I’m not overwhelmed)

Simple but easy and hopefully attainable goals.

Until Next Time,

~Kristen

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Rental Renovation – Campbell House Part 1

My husband and I acquired this rental house about 3 years ago, it was instant love for us. As it is in need of some updating, I am attempting to do some of it while our renters are living there. So I decided to start with the front entrance/hallway, it was covered in a yellow flower wallpaper that made the area dark and dingy even though the wallpaper was rather pretty. Especially since there is very little light in that corner and since the ceiling and walls are plaster putting new lights is almost impossible unless you don’t mind making a mess.

This was one of those projects that isn’t hard to complete it is just messy and takes time. Again finding a babysitter is the hardest part of this project for me, but having 4 children tends to do that.

Ok. So this front entrance had 2 layers of wallpaper on it, I once again used just a spray bottle and plastic putty knife to remove it.

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As you can see it was rather pretty wallpaper. Even the ceiling has a thick wallpaper on it, that needed to be removed. Because of the carpet I put just a cheap plastic drop cloth that I could throw away at the end of the day since it would be covered in wet pieces of wallpaper. I also brought a step ladder and borrowed the renters step ladder, I be bringing my own step ladder once we start to paint and of course our cloth drop cloth.

 

 

 

 

 

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There is just so much going on in this front entrance that we want to make it a cohesive and bright color. We are going to paint the section of dark paneling by the stairs and leave the red color. Although a we are putting a small piece of trim between the paneling and the red wall going up the steps.

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One thing we will be replacing is the pendant light, while it is beautiful it doesn’t put out a lot of light. We are going to find vintage style chandelier for this space instead, that way it gives our tenants the light they need and open up the space with just light.

It took 2 days a total of 6 hours to remove all of the wallpaper on the walls, the paper on the ceiling came down in giant strips in less than 5 minutes.

 

Until Next Time,
~Kristen

 

Rental Renovation Project – The North House Part 3

The living room, I’m so excited to show you the living room. Man oh man has it changed since we first bought the place back in September.

If you remember it was this super dark wallpaper with heavy white curtains over the single window in this room. I peeled the wallpaper off in this room pretty quickly, all I used was a spray bottle of water and a plastic putty knife. I was surprised to see that it came off pretty easily and without to many problems.

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It was so stinking dark in this room, the ceiling light/fan didn’t work so that didn’t help matters any.

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One Sunday I only had my youngest with me in other words I was babywearing, so I only scraped wallpaper as far as I could reach since it wasn’t safe to climb a ladder while wearing her. This work was literally an hours worth of work, I do love results like that.
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A few days later I was able to make my escape, I mean find a babysitter and finish pulling the wallpaper off the walls. The wallpaper only went to the tops of the built-ins so that was great news.

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What a mess

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The corner where the built-ins were located

 

During our repaint of the living room I decided that the ceiling would need painting too since it was an almond color and didn’t fit the updated color scheme. It was amazing how much brighter it became once the ceiling was painted a bright white.IMG_20160625_181323809

Lets just say the updated colors turned out fantastic. Honestly my husband and I have thought about using this same gray in our living room when we repaint at some point.

Now the fireplace mantle looked a little drab after seeing everything painted white as it was an off white almost cream color.

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The corner wasn’t painted yet due to needing the corner fixed with a bit of dry wall mud.

The next picture is just after the first coat of white paint.

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The difference was perfect and changed the whole look without damaging it at all. If it hadn’t already been painted we wouldn’t have done so.

Until Next Time,
~Kristen

Rental Renovation Project – The North House Part 2

So last week I wrote about one of our rentals we have been working on the North House, today’s post is all about the dining room.

If you remember it had ugly stained carpet, accordion wallpaper and paneling wainscoting right? Well here it is in all of its ugly carpet glory. We did keep the light fixture as it was beautiful and fit the space perfectly.
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It was pretty boring except the exceptional fireplace mantle.
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However the wallpaper got painted this hideous green, but like I said in my last post the green was really pretty on the paint swatch.
We replaced the carpet with a soft beige carpet and the walls were painted, so it was really just cosmetic things done in this room.
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I’m pretty sure it is pea soup green, but hey our renters like it so that is all that matters right? Right.

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Keep an eye out for our next blog post on the living room, it is my favorite room in this house.

Until Next Time,
~Kristen

Rental Renovation Project – The North House Part 1

My husband and I own several rentals and over the course of this summer we have been renovating one of them and I’ll be updating a few area’s of another one as well. I thought why not write about the updates we are doing in these great houses.

The first house we call the North House due to the owners before us being the North’s  plus it makes it easier on us to name the houses.

The North house was purchased last September at a local auction, it is a beautiful gray brick house built in the 1890’s. Mr. North had quite a few rentals and wasn’t known to be the best repairman so many of the things we have come across were put in poorly. So we have had to deal with that long with other problems, but fixing one thing at a time has this house ready to rent out to a lovely couple.

Several of the projects we worked on in that house was painting the living room and dining room, updating/fixing 2 of the 4 bathrooms, removing a drop ceiling in one bedroom and repairing the ceiling and chimney in that room. We have also removed a closet that was built in a doorway, fixed a few cracks and holes in the ceilings with plaster and dry wall mud. Replaced a few lights as well. So it has definitely been a busy summer working on that house between our regular schedule lives.

Today is all about before pictures.

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The dining room has some weird accordion wallpaper and a horribly stained carpet. So the walls were painted a hideous green that our renters picked out and to be fair it is a pretty color on the paint swatch. We replaced the carpet in this room and the room to the right, it was a pale pink carpet in there. It was replaced with a soft beige.

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The living room was so dark

The living room was dark, oh so dark with its green wallpaper and heavy white curtains on the windows. Although there really is only 1 true window to the outside in this room. So I removed all of the wallpaper on the walls, my husband removed the built in bookcases since they were not in great condition. Oh and all the cords you see in the right hand corner of the bottom picture, well Mr. North used oodles of short extension cords, we found about 30 of them while cleaning out the house.

We have come across a few strange things like the plugin light switch. The reflective tape around the light bulbs in the kitchen light. And the mess of wiring, plumbing and air vent disaster in one of the bathrooms. Repairing and fixing this work has taken a while but we are slowly getting it done.

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Where can I get a skirt with this print?

There have been a few treasures such as this wallpaper in one of the upstairs bathroom above the drop ceiling. I’m pretty sure this is one my favorite things in this whole house.

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This mantle is my favorite one. The tile is pink and cream which I have never seen before.

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The detail work is amazing

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One thing this house has going for it is the beautiful mantels. The large mantels are downstairs while the small fireplace mantels are in 2 of the 3 bedrooms.

Until Next Time,
~Kristen

 

Studio Renovation Part Ten: Organizing

Finally an update. I know it has been awhile but having a new baby tends to put everything but baby on hold.

I did get a chance to go work in my studio last Saturday with my youngest 3 children in tow, we went during Abigail’s afternoon nap so she slept while I worked and her brothers played with their blocks and dinosaurs.

I finally finished hanging up all of my inventory. I needed to purchase more hanger thus the hang up, pun intended. Once that was completed I started the arduous job of organizing all of the clothing which I should have done all along but didn’t as I was trying to get as much done before Abigail made her appearance. After much debate with my 4 year old son Z, we decided to organize by type of clothing then by decade within each type. I only got about halfway of organizing by decade when I broke up a fight between the boys and that sent me on a another task.

So all in all I started my wall of hats, cleaned some trash up, hung the hooks for my backdrop, organized my clothing inventory and some general clean up.

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Noticed my husband put in a light for me one day, he did a great job picking it out and installing the chandelier for me.

I love it.

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My husband also claimed one of the other bedrooms as his office so I told him he needed to paint it since I’m so over painting anything right now. He picked a lovely light blue and did a pretty decent job of painting. I really should have had him help me with the rest of the studio.

Josh Office   If you noticed the pile of foam in the door way, that was carpet padding from the living room that has been sitting there since last fall. My husband also got rid of that along with several other bags of trash that needed removed. So I can now walk into the living room without climbing over all of the carpet and carpet padding.

Also the reason the door is off is that my husband purchased a very large desk that won’t fit in his office without removing the door and door jam.

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It was wonderful being able to put in a few hours of work and seeing progress made even a little bit is better than none.

Until next time,

~Kristen

Studio Renovations Part Six: The Hunt For Color II

As my studio progressively gets closer to being finished I am in quandary of what color to choose from. Last week I talked about getting a few samples of colors that appealed to me, before I left the studio I used a piece of cardboard and painted some white primer paint on it to prep it for my sample swatch instead of painting on the walls to do so.

I narrowed it down to 3 paint chips at Lowes and had those 3 turned into small paint samples. I don’t know if you remember or not about the employee in the paint section forgot to put the name of the paint on the sample its self so I don’t have the names to share with you. So I labeled each sample with a number 1 through 3 and did the same to the area that I painted on my cardboard swatch.

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After my samples had dried I am very much leaning towards sample 1, it is a very light yet crisp color and one that will not detract from the pieces in my shop.

IMAG4490 Sample 1, my favorite right now

IMAG4491 Sample 2, I like it but I think it is going to be a bit to dark.

IMAG4492 Sample 3, I do like this color blue but it doesn’t seem right for my studio.

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I must decided one which color by Friday so I can run to Lowes and get a couple of gallons of paint.

~Kristen