Thursday, July 28, 2011

Paint Wars!

Dude, travel can suck the energy right out of you!  Anywhoo, So I was in Reno, NV this past weekend for a work event (though I did have fun!) and had the chance to see some of the fancy schmancy hotels and suites while I was there.  I will not go into all the details of the "Elvis" bathroom (especially since I do not currently have pictures) but it got me to thinking about all the painting projects I have around my house. 

Painting is not one of my favorite things to do but it has to get done.  When I moved in, the builders painted a nice tan color...everywhere. Ceilings? Check. Walls? Check. Every nook and cranny? Check.  The carpet is in the same shade of this tan color and it is like living inside a manila folder.  The color is not atrocious but the amount of it can be overwhelming. 

So, I have been thinking about the colors and when I am going to paint.  The colors are easy!  I have been dreaming about taking the color out of one of my throw pillows on the couch and translating it into an accent wall in my living room and dining room.  I love the Sherwin Williams App for my iphone where I can take pictures of stuff and match the color (and according to Color Snap, my skin is Swanky Gray so I gotta get some sun!)  For the wall behind my couch and the coordinating opposite wall in the dining room, I have chosen Dutch Tile Blue:
I LOVE this color!  It goes well with my existing furniture and my dream of having incredibly crisp, white drapes on the wall of windows (and french doors) in my living room as well as the windows in my dining room.  It also translates well with the kitchen cabinets  in my kitchen and the existing tan color in my house. Two good coats in a flat paint and I am golden!

Next on the paint project is my master bedroom.  I have been dreaming about doing something that will match the statement of my headboard.  Those that know me and have been to my house know I took a headboard that I made previously and converted it to a padded and wrapped headboard.  The material I chose was a medium gray.  I am still waiting to use the silver nail head trim I want to use but thus far love the headboard.  I want to build the rest of the bed surround and wrap it as well as I think it will give a more finished look.  BUT there is not much of a statement with the head board on the tan wall so I am going dark...really dark:

Black that name!  I think my headboard will scream fabulous against this dark color.  Also, that means I am going to take my nightstands (well, when I find the appropriate shape and size) and go high-gloss white with sparkly glass knobs.  Girly...yes, but I am a girl. 

My master also has three other walls and painting the entire room in Black Magic would make it look like I live in a cave and cave-chic is not what I am going for so I needed to pick another color for the rest of the walls and ceiling (since that is...wait for it...tan.) The ceiling I am pretty sure I am going to rock in white but for the rest of the walls, shazam:

Modern Gray!  It will go perfect with Black Magic and the gray of my headboard which is a bit darker tone.  It will also go with the fabric I have already bought for my window dressing so now I just have to find the perfect window seat fabric. Yes my master is going to look like a black and white photo but that is what I want people...leave me alone!

The final paint choice for this go-around is for my master bathroom.  All of the bath fixtures are white with chrome hardware.  The cabinets in the bathroom are in the same mocha color as the kitchen cabinets.  Also, the master bath opens up into the master bedroom...funny how that happens... so must "talk" to the bedroom colors.  So, what did I choose? Voila:

It is another gray but has more of a blue undertone to it and is darker than what I plan for the bedroom.  I have a really large frosted window in my master bath and the size of the space can carry the darker color.  Who knows though...I might just carry modern gray into the bathroom rather than this Unusual Gray.....

Now, Project House?  Well, I have shown you all photos of it before but here it is again:
Go, Speed Racer, Go!

I am pretty sure the red is settling in with Christie but I have to confess, the red - especially around the Faccia - looks like a giant red racing stripe to me...I don't know if it is the radical differences between the two colors or what but I am so itching to change something up here.  I would either paint out the red everywhere to a more complimentary color to the gray house paint or change up the gray to a color that works better with the red.  Besides, this is a 30's house so I am thinking more color combinations that they would have painted in the 30's.  What do you think readers?  Any suggestions for "Project House" paint colors?

As soon as some of these paint projects are completed, I will post up making fun of my painting abilities! (well, you can but I know where you live...I am that powerful)


Sunday, July 17, 2011

A Tale of Two Closets!

So Friday Fantasies was a washout this last week...but I have a job people and it kept me busy so look for friday fantasies this next week (hopefully since I will be in Reno for work)

So, one of the first things I wanted to tackle around my Suburbia-Standard house was my master closet.  I am a girl.  I like shoes. A lot. And purses. And clothes.  A lot.  What I don't like is having any of these things in my bedroom.  I mean, what are closets for if not all your clothes, shoes, and purses?  When I looked for my house, I really looked for a master closet that was large enough to store all my crap in.  No dressers for me...nosiree! 

So I lived with the builder-basic closet for last year but come the new year, I wanted to get the closet up and running.  I took my christmas cash (thanks mom and dad!), and headed off to the organization store of all organization stores...The Container Store.  See, me and Elfa are good friends.  Elfa and I have converted several closets and pantrys (my current pantry is sill in builder basic but on the project list) so I am very familiar on how to use this product.  You know you are more familiar with the product when you can sketch out your design in Excel (sorry, I don't have a CAD program on my laptop) and take it to the store with your cut list and they are impressed and showing it to each other...but I digress.  I got the hammer out and knocked the hell out of those crap shelves and went to town on installation...and now I have this!

Yes, those are lovely shelves for my shoes...and bags...and sweaters...and look at the magnificence! (Ignore the walls that need a coat of paint...a sister does what she has to in order to have a closet in a day!)

Right there on the left...
I even have space for my laundry cart!  And a stepladder because those shelves go ALL the way up and I am short.

And now just some fun shots...

Oooh, la, la!  Glamor shot...had to get some jewelry in this post!
Snickers, bored,
hiding in the closet wondering why mommy is taking pictures in here...

Next up for the closet is some better lighting.

So how is this story about two closets?  Well, when Christie moved into her has a bonus space in the back.  Walking through the house (sorry about all the comments, Christie!  I know it is your house but I have ideas...aaaaammaaaazing ideas!), she mentioned that she would love to turn this unused space into a "Walk-In Closet".  And like Jeannie to Major Nelson, BAM!  Done! 

Hello photo from a camera phone...
What?  You say it is just one shelf and a really long hanging pole?  Hey!  We are working on a serious budget here.  One thing at a time! 

Besides, the Great A/C Debacle of 2011 happened so money was diverted (Yes, one of these days Christie is going to tell the WORLD about the GACD2011 as I am now referring to it).  Seriously, we live in Texas and you have to have AC around here in the Summer.

Anywhoo, while our closets vary greatly, at the end of the day they fit us both.  My closet is complicated and seemingly organized to the max( TRUTH: my room typically looks like my closet went on a bender and vomited clothes and shoes everywhere) while Christie's is simple with personality and an organization I envy...just like the two of us!


Thursday, July 14, 2011

A quick comment from the tragically messy...

Hi, my name is Shelley and I am a messaholic.  It has been a couple of hours since I was forced to rapi-clean* my house for strangers....

As if life is not chaotic enough right now, this week I have been visited by the AT&T service tech (stupid non-working modem...I hate you technology!) as well as the new bug vendor who arrived this morning to vanquish the spider and wasp population that had taken up residence in my house.  Those that know me well or have worked with me or stayed with me while on business trips (Hi Dena if you are reading this!) or just know me, know that I am tragically messy. 

It all started when I was a kid...I think it was because I hated the pumpkin orange of my carpet (um, who wouldn't?) and thus found a way to spread my clothes and belongings all over the floor.  This affliction began to take over all viable surfaces in my childhood bedroom as well.  Then, as my chore growing up was doing the dishes (and by doing I mean loading and unloading the dishwasher), I grew further and further away from wanting to do anything to keep my space clean. 

So now to this week where I have had a stranger in my house every other day...well, I could not have them thinking I was a hoarder so I did the mad dash around my house each morning hiding, ferreting, or throwing away everything in site (which is hard when the bug guys want to spray around all the plumbing pipes!)  And now I cannot find my checkbook, or stamps, or anything remotely essential.  THIS is why I don't clean up!  My mess has a system and I can find things so much easier when they are all out on the floors or surfaces in plain sight.

So now things are relatively straight around here and once again I make a promise to myself that I am going to keep things straight this time.  But like any messaholic, I will once again most likely fall back into bad habits next weekend when I return from a business trip and just drop my suitcase in the closest spot....that is how it always starts....


*Rapi-clean:  The act of running furiously around your space and shoving all mess and clutter into convenient hiding places 

Monday, July 11, 2011

Pinky and the Brawn

Well, there she not Snickers though she has decided to take over the renovation responsibilities here but my new Pink Tool Belt of "Two Chicks" fame!
I'm thinking lots of soft fluffy surfaces with minions to wait on me!
So the quick story about the toolbelt is while installing shelves in Christie's kitchen pantry (or what we are turning into the pantry...more on that later when we get more than a few shelves up), I mentioned that I was going to have to get me a toolbelt for just such occasions.  Now mind you this is while I am rolling around on the floor of the pantry space (a walk-in pantry with a window no less!  I am so jealous!) mounting shelf brackets so the yummy, yummy goodness would not crash to the floor while Christie slept.  Anyway, I pretty much forgot about the conversation until I was installing the shelf and hanging rod in Christie's "Walk-in Closet" (again, more on that later with a story about my closet) when it would have come in SUPER handy as I kept misplacing the stud finder and drill bits.  Again, I did not think much about it...

Lo and behold, I headed over to the "Red Renovation" which is my current favorite name for Christie's place on the 4th of July weekend just to hang out and maybe grab a drink on the town square and this thing of beauty :

Hello Beautiful!
Was in a festive gift bag!  A gift from a true friend who lets me come up with zany projects for her house...wild ideas that neither of us know how to do - YET - and cost oodles of cash.  I was so excited as what a great birthday present...when she asked me when my birthday was (evil smile). So if it was not for my birthday, then that means I get some thing else in a couple weeks!  YES!  I love presents! 

Now I just need to find tools that color coordinate with my snazzy new tool belt....


Friday, July 8, 2011

Friday Fantasies...

So, as I sit on my couch in the blessedly cool air conditioning (hello and thank you to excellent insulation and a really strong A/C unit!), I thought I would share some of the upcoming projects we are fantasizing about for our respective houses...but when the temprature finally drops below the surface of the sun here in Texas!

For my house:

So this is the backyard - well the backyard when I bought the house (it is actually really green now thanks to my sprinkler system!)

BOOORRRING!  No outdoor space to play with the furry munchkin ( AKA Snickers) and NO SHADE!!!!  This has to be rectified!

First up, a deck - not attached to the house but standing a bit away from the house...I am thinking 15x15 at grade.  Something like this:

Well, something like this without the step and without the big-box store shade structure. 

Listen, I understand the draw of these structures.  They are homeowner DIY friendly, they contain all the parts and pieces you need (hopefully!  Don't ask Christie about the missing parts and pieces when we assembled her new desk!), and they look relatively first.  The problem with these structures is they are almost always temporary and do not last more than one season.

Instead of a generic shade structure that will either blow away in some of the strong winds I get (thanks to all the fields surrounding my house), I want to do a shade structure something like this:

It is sturdy with the poles planted in the ground and made of steel, the covers are made to be outdoors for all seasons, and how fun are those!  

Oh, who am I kidding?  I REALLY want something like this from my friends locally at Varnado Construction

Who knew the dude scooping ice cream in high school would grow up to do this!

Wood, and lights, and fans and D.R.E.A.M.Y!!!!!!  Man, does he do good work. This however is not DIY friendly and I did not lately win the lottery so I am out of luck. 

For Christie's abode, we are starting out slow as if she were to give me my way, I would start ripping down walls and pulling up porch boards to replace...not to mention panting everything that does not move!  The girl does have some patience with me. 

We are talking about that spot WAY down there.

Anywhoo, I did already hang her flag so she is already all patriotic and stuff so how about for this corner of the porch:

THIS!  How cool and easy would this be.  I would modify it though with sides and a back as we tend to drink margaritas and mojitos and I can so forsee us falling off the back of this thing and if we kept going over the porch wall, it is a fairly long way down.  I am all into daybeds but not having to use a daybed because you have broken something falling off the porch...and of anyone, Christie and I would be the ones falling off. 

I would also LOVE to see this dressed with an old colorful quilt and some colorful coordinating throw pillows.  It would really add some character to the porch.

Anyway, what am I going to do this weekend?  Well since the thermometer is currently melting outside, I will be spending the weekend inside reorganizing my home office.  There is seriously a trees worth of paperwork everywhere and since I work from home, it is becoming a distraction (more posts on this crazy space later!).  I also am going to take copious breaks to go around the corner to one of the pools in my suburbia-subdivision and chill out. 

So have a great weekend readers!  For those of you - friends and foes alike - who are anywhere where the temperature is has not starting melting the roads and sidewalks and you are not outside enjoying summer, I hate you (or not...I may not even know you yet!)


Thursday, July 7, 2011

In The Beginning...

So, I thought and thought about how to start this blog and what my first post would be and decided I would start at the beginning…no, not the beginning of life but the beginning of how two crazy chicks started this journey.  It all started around sometime in 2002 when this crazy (and in only the very best way), 6 ft. tall blond walked into my office as a new co-worker.  She was a little bit country, with a little bit country on the side and a heart as big as her pick-up truck, Silver Bullet (miss that truck!) and we hit it off immediately.  Two single, blond chicks became peas and peas…she introduced me to the fun that is four-wheeling and I introduced her to the fun that is renovation (not sure that one has sunk all the way in…)  So, in the beginning, Christie and I became friends.

So what does any of this have to do with a pink tool belt and a dream?  Well, I have always been fascinated by building things and HGTV..well, some would say obsessed.  So last year when I needed to get out of my living situation, I turned to buying a house…and of course bought the shiniest, most brand new house I could find.  Sounds great, no?  No. There are few projects I can tackle myself around the house.  I already have granite countertops, everything is in new shape, in other words, booooring.  Then, a couple of months ago, Christie embarked on finding a house in an older neighborhood.  She was looking for something inexpensive with a bit of soul and ended up finding this:

I would say this sucker has soul!  She would probably (now that she is living there) say this house is soul-less (but that is another post and another future blog altogether).  I was so happy for her and secretly (well, not so secretly) excited for myself.  HERE was the project house of my dreams!  The best part?  I don’t have to live there while the projects are happening.  Win, win, right? (Christie, if you are reading this, all the future construction will be so easy and you won’t even be able to tell that it is going on. Promise. Do you believe me?)

Anyway, this blog is dedicated to the two of us as we tackle projects large and small, complicated and easy, messy and messy.  It will show us learning how to use the table saw I inherited from my grandfather and all the tools I plan to buy this year for my birthday (that’s not weird is it?).  It will also follow the few projects that I do around my suburbia-standard house to make it stand out from the neighbors.  Basically, this blog is following two renovation rookies as we figure out one project to the next on how to do things for ourselves.  I hope you find it entertaining and if not, well, the power button is not broken on your computer, is it?


Oh, and stay tuned on where that Pink Tool Belt comes in...