Friends forging a course together through the unexpected

Future Dinner Parties Are Being Planned! February 11, 2013

Filed under: Kate — Uncharted @ 12:42 pm
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Now, this may be considered a small project by some of you, but it is the first completed of MANY home projects that Eric and I have taken on since buying our beautiful little 1950’s house on a hill in Barrington, IL. When Eric and I bought our house in April of last year, our wish list included a huge list of items, some of which we knew we’d have to compromise on, based on our budget and targeted area to live. Some of the things that we wished for: 2 Car Garage, En Suite Master Bath, Huge Lot… we got in the house that we purchased. Others (Finished Basement, Lots of Closet Space, Modern Fixtures) we had to surrender and hope for in the future. But just because our little starter house isn’t our dream house, doesn’t mean we can’t fix it up for the next owners (and for us too, while we live there!).

So together we have been tackling many small projects around the house – taming the jungle in our front yard and growing grass in our mud pit (I know, I’m making this house sound like a dream!), pulling up the nasty carpet in the foyer and tiling it (this one is on my 2013 list of aspirations) and changing the light fixtures so we don’t feel like we’re in the 1980’s… but our first entire room is finally complete… the Dining Room.

Now, as you can see from the below picture, our dining room wasn’t in too bad of shape. It was really sort of a bonus to have one in the first place, even if it was a bit dated and needed to be cleaned up. As you can see from the stylish window coverings, there wasn’t much “covering” going on and we received several comments from our neighbors (quite politely I might add) that their dog barks at us when she sees us through the window. I’m pretty certain this was their nice way of asking us to cover the windows because they’re tired of watching us walk around half naked. (What? Don’t you do that at your house?) You will also notice that the chandelier was dated and perhaps it’s just me, but not to a 20-something year old’s taste and was hung way too high. Lastly, the walls were filled with nails and holes from picture hangings. I might also add that the furnishings is this picture are not ours.

old dining room


To beautify our amazing dining room, here’s what we did:

(1) Removed the old window treatments
(2) Pulled the nails, patched the holes and painted the walls – Tiffany Blue!
(3) Bought a chandelier at Menard’s (though I don’t have a love affair with the chandelier we chose, we felt it was modern and would appeal to the masses) and made sure it was dark to pop against the walls.
(4) Purchased Custom Sized, Faux Wood Blinds at Menard’s and hung them (I’m not even joking, these were less than $100, they look amazing and were super easy to install. Plus, they cut them to your size right there in the store – it takes like 5 minutes!)
(5) We are lucky that Eric’s grandfather built our dining table, but we needed chairs, so we purchased some at Overstock.com and assembled them. By the end, we were blistered and bloody… but it was all worth it.

Lastly, I wanted to point out the table mats in my after shot. For my wedding, I believe I mentioned we bought some material to jazz up the white linens on the tables, just a couple patterns where we used some material in the center of the tables… well these table mats, my tablecloth (not pictured) and my new cloth napkins (yellow with polka dots!) are all from the wedding cloths we used. What a cool way to turn them into a keepsake!

And now for the grand reveal:


new dining room



What do you think?


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