AFTER - bright, cheery, sunny, organized ... ahhhh.
first step of the process - the day that I made the repairs, hung the plywood and peg board and moved in the furniture that I refinished. I also used that first day to organize the contents of the closet. I'll describe the organization of the closet in more detail below.
My second day of work was all lipstick and rouge: primer, paint and accessories! Love love and love. Here's how it went down. First, I primed the room. I had the white latex primer on hand, so I used that first. The room is mostly studs and unfinished plywood on the walls and ceiling, so I knew priming was a must. I decided to prime everything: studs, unfinished drywall, plywood, trim, even the heating duct (which was an unfortunate shade of messy black thanks to a well-intentioned contractor who removed the asbestos). Here it is after a coat of primer (note: I was somehow able to restrain myself from painting the floor)
Doesn't it look worlds better already? Once the primer dried, it was time to paint! My original plan had been to use the leftover nearly-full gallon of pale blue paint from the nursery (Icelandic by Sherwin Williams), but full disclosure: I could not handle painting *another * blue room in my house. Don't get me wrong, I love blue. I mean, hello, walk in my house and it is abundantly clear how much I love blue. But I realized that in the past year, I have painted nearly everything blue: the bathroom, the laundry room walls and floor, even my kitchen and powder room are a bluish gray. I needed to step away from the blue. So I hit up Lowes' "oops" paint area and lo and behold, I found a full gallon of Valspar Pecan Cream: a bright, sunny yellow. I snatched up that gallon (for $5!) and my paint geek self rejoiced. So, I used the pecan cream on the walls and ceiling and painted a fresh coat of white trim with my favorite trim color, Dover White by Sherwin Williams on the white bits of trim in the room. The Pecan Cream is a little brighter than I would have liked, but it does a good job of brightening up the closet. And for $5 I can't really complain. Here's the freshly painted space.
And now for accessories and organization! I divided the room into three distinct sections: (1) gift wrapping; (2) paper love and crafts; and (3) sewing. Now everything has a place.
Gift Wrapping Section
I used a tall bookshelf here (that I painted white) to organize all my gift wrapping needs. The top shelf holds cards in the card box I blogged about last week, as well as two other boxes that I covered with fabric I had on hand (a tutorial post will follow soon). These boxes hold tissue paper and curling ribbon & bows. The second shelf has a big narrow basket that I already owned, and in it is scraps of ribbon. The bottom shelf stores my wedding shoes and cards on the left and a bin of the kids' artwork from school on the right. I used the pegboard to be a ribbon station and to hang my most-used supplies. This was super simple: I just bought some dowel rods from my local hardware store, and suspended the rods from some peg board hooks, threaded the ribbon through the dowel and voila. I also hung my favorite scissors in a hanging Mason jar that I picked up during Jamie's and my trip to the Pottery Barn Outlet, as well as my trusty upholstery stapler and beloved Sherwin Williams fan deck. I picked up the cool black and white tote to hold rolls of wrapping paper. I hated the way the floor looked, so when Jamie and I were at the Pottery Barn Outlet, I couldn't resist this cute yellow rug (on sale for $9). I used a frame I had on hand and framed a yellow Susy Jack calendar print on that wall and called it a day. I used cute labels from Paper-Source that I had on hand to create labels for all of the contents of my baskets and bins, sticking the labels on some and hanging them from ribbon on the baskets.
Paper Love/Craft Section
For the crafty section of the room, I used another old bookshelf that I had (and painted it white). This sucker used to have doors, which made it such a pain to access. So I knocked them off and re-purposed it as open shelving instead. I already had the clear bins and sorted the contents and made labels for easy identification of the contents. I keep labels and paper in the little two-drawer unit on the floor, which I had used for storing ribbon before. The little clear bins formerly had blue tops, and being the insane person that I am, I spray-painted them the green to go with the new color scheme. The blue was making me nuts. I know ... I added the labels to the bins for easy identification. The plastic two-drawer unit on the floor holds paper and card stock.
Finally, this is the sewing area. I had the drawer unit and the little cubes already and pushed them together to form a nice, neat little storage system. The drawers hold my fabrics and the cubes hold my mini-sewing machine, my sewing kit (that my mom gave me a few years ago!) and baskets for more accessories.
The room still functions as storage space, too. I keep our extra table leaf in here and secured it to the studs with some bungee cords that I picked up at Dollar Tree. I also keep our suitcases in the corner and hang my diaper bag along the entry wall (though, sadly, with Little almost potty trained, the diaper bag's days are numbered). Here's the table leaf -- nice and secure. You can also see how I painted all the studs and unfinished dry wall.
* $5 paint (Lowe's Oops Paint, Valspar in Pecan Cream, high gloss)
* $20 peg board and plywood (from Lowe's and Home Depot)
* $1.50 peg board hooks
* $10 pvc moulding (I went with PVC because it's soooo easy to cut!)
* $1.00 - tote for wrapping paper (I used a credit at Marshalls to get this)
* $1.00 - dowel rod
* $1.00 - bungee cords for securing table leaf
* $9.00 - rug from Pottery Barn Outlet
* $0 - furniture, baskets, plastic bins, labels, trim paint, primer, hooks, artwork and frame
All in all, worth every over-budget penny, I think! My goal was to make use of this formerly wasted space and to pretty it up, both so that I could enjoy it now and so that in the future when we sell the house, someone might adore the bright, cheery bonus space. What do you think?
So what's next? That's the inevitable question when I cross something off of my to-do list. I have a bunch of smaller projects lined up for my place and a few really large ones. However, the large ones all involve lots of painting and/or outdoor spaces (i.e., refinishing the cabinet I bought from the ReStore for the kitchen, painting the garage walls and floors, organizing the garage, organizing our storage shed in the yard), so those will have to wait until Spring. Fear not, my sweet mother-in-law has graciously allowed me to do some big time work on her home, starting with the dining room. I get to tear down wallpaper, paint, hang moulding ... oh, happy happy joy joy! Stay tuned for those posts!
See you swoon,