I've waited so long for a beautiful room. Growing up I shared a room with my sister and that room was never "mine", it was always "ours". Then I went to university and had my own tiny dorm room, it was all mine. It was all mine, but all I could do was add posters to the white painted cinderblock walls. When Christopher and I first got married I painted our room and added border, and I was in heaven, but we still had second hand furniture, and whatever bed covering we could salvage. This year after a very long wait I finally have my dream room. A place that makes me smile and envelopes me in a rush of tranquility.
This was the year that I would have my the beautiful room of my dreams. We are a one income family and so I knew that I would have to do this on a very tight budget, but I also knew I could do it. I began by eagerly eating up Pinterest. I pinned tons of pictures of rooms that I thought were beautiful. Should it be ethereal, oh I would love an ethereal room (all white and flowy spa like). I was sold on ethereal, until I looked at my white duvet that our dog Fergus was lying on... no white is not a good idea in this house. Eventually I decided on a beach theme. All of our best vacations have been at the ocean, and the ocean breaths life to my soul. It was decided, beach theme. It would not be cheesy beach themed, however.
On our March Break vacation to Virginia Beach I picked up this shell bedspread, and giant pillows. That was the jumping off point to our room. Every time I was anywhere near a store that sold paint I would grab up handfuls of paint chips. I picked up blues and browns and coffee colours, and tans. What should be the wall colours? Eventually I took out my bedspread and placed the dozens upon dozens of chips on the bedspread. That is how I decided on the colour scheme. The room would be the lighter coffee colour. That would be a bit boring though... What if I added a stripe? Should it be vertical or horizontal? The only for sure was that the stripe should be the blue of the bedspread. After much self debate (I say self debate because Christopher was not in any way helpful in picking out colours or making decisions). I decided on large vertical stripes.
I would like to show you before and after pictures, but Christopher was just to quick! I came home from shopping to find all the wall border off and the first coat of paint on the wall.
I gave the wall 24 hours to cure before I began taping. To begin with I was going to use a plumb line to get my stripes even, but in the end I decided to use bristol board and measure out rulers. I have fallen in love with the frog brand of masking tape. It is amazing, not inexpensive, but worth every single penny. It took me about four hours to tape out the walls. If you are looking at the above picture and wondering why there are small bits of tape on some bits, it's because those were the stripes that were to remain coffee coloured.
As Christopher rolled on the blue I began to get excited. I could see the room beginning to materialize. I was going to have my beautiful room!
Our bedroom floor is plywood, yucky, dirty old plywood. This had to be remedied. There was no point fixing the room up, making it look nice, when the floor was plywood. I am an asthmatic, so carpet was out of the question. Hardwood was too expensive. We investigated laminate flooring. That was quite a shocker. Our room is tiny, I mean tiny only 9 x 11. For the very cheapest laminate flooring that we would install ourselves (did I mention that we are not handy) it was going to be a minimum of $300.00, ouch. We felt like spending $300.00 was our only answer. And then I saw the below video on Youtube.
It was decided, we would paint the floor and make it look like faux hardwood floors. I went to the hardware store and bought a Martha Stewart wood graining brush, some glaze and varathane.
We began by vacuuming the plywood and washing it. When it was dry Christopher painted two coats of light yellow on the floor. At this point you may be wondering why I am always saying "Christopher painted". The reason for this is not because I'm lazy (although I totally am), but rather because my husband LOVES painting. He finds it really relaxing, and who am I to stop the man I love from doing the
lion's share of the work what gives him pleasure? We used yellow paint because if you look at real wood, it has a yellow undertone.
I had planned to tape all of the lines so that they would be crisp, and plankish. The fact is that I am super lazy and the first few bits went on really nicely and looked quite good. I decided to forget about the extra work, I would just wood grain it without the tape. Although I am really happy with the way the floors look, if I were doing it again, I would take the time and tape off the floor so that it would have crisp lines.
I was surprised that all told it only took me an hour and a half to paint the whole floor. The next day Christopher got up early and varathaned the floor. If he put a coat on every two hours he would not have to sand it down in between coats. He gave the floor three coats. We let the floor cure 48 hours before we moved anything back in.
We moved all of the old furniture back in. Somehow the furniture that I had hated so desperately molded itself to the new room. I dry brushed the old bookcase with antique white paint and it completely changed the look of it, making it look worn and beachy. Not only did it completely change the look of the bookshelf, somehow as if by magic, it changed the look of the old dressers. With each return of furniture I would sigh a sigh of contentment. My room was looking so beautiful.
Because the room is so small we knew that we did not want to sacrifice the new roomy feel of the room by putting in a clunky end table. Christopher did need somewhere to put his things, and so the hunt was on. I found the above little stool at this really neat little spot called "The Vintage Booth" here in Tweed. It was the perfect size, and by adding a wooden tray to the top it was completely functional.
I found dark bamboo blinds on sale at Lowes for only $6.00. I could not believe it. I really wanted pure white gauzy curtains for the window. I really wanted it to have a plantation style feel to it. The closest I could find were the white gauzy curtain that had the blue circle pattern on them. I was concerned that I had mixed too many patterns in such a small space (stripes, shells and now circles), but it actually blended in really nicely.
One of my favourite things in the room is the picture over the bookshelf. It is a picture from Christopher and my wedding renewal last year (yes I know I plan to share about that even though it was last year). I had found this really great matted picture frame at Home Sense. I discovered when I was putting the photo enlargement in it that it had a bit of a shadow box feel to it. I put shells in front of the matting, shells from our renewal. Every time I look at that picture it reminds me of that magical day, and just how much I love my husband.
Now my room is an oasis. I feel privileged to have a room so beautiful. It has been a long wait for this space, but I think it means more to me because I had to wait so long. When I go into my room I smile, every single time. When I lay in bed, just before I turn out the light to sleep, I smile. My new room makes me feel special. That sounds stupid to say that a room could make me feel special, but it does. I don't know how it happens, but that room improves my self worth, my self esteem. For the first time in my life I truly feel that I deserve to have something nice.
This bedroom makeover cost us well below $400.00 to create. That includes the paint, the bedspread, the pillows, the picture frame, the curtains, I mean everything. The price tag was inexpensive but the results, at least to us are priceless.