"faux" chimney

When the renters moved out they failed to mention in the past 10 years that there was a leak and water damage in the kitchen... not sure how you fail to mention this to your landlord in a 10 year span but it happened!

There have been two remodels to the house in the past 110 years.  The 1928 remodel when a bathroom was added and a 1958 remodel when they finally put in a furnace, electric stove, and a hot water heater.  Prior to this my poor great aunt was still stoking coal in a stove that was originally in the corner and hooked to the chimney. In 1958 the chimney was taken out of commission and covered so nicely with this dry wall.

Instead of trying to patch or redo the dry wall my dad and I decided that we would pay homage to the chimney that was once there and cover the wall with bricks.  We thought this would be time saving and less messy (only ended up being a little).

To start my dad fitted the wall with plywood for the bricks to adhere too.

We used the little halfy bricks you can purchase.  These are NOT the light little foam ones that people are always pinning on pinterest and putting on the side of their bathtubs for a quick face lift.

These are real bricks, just thin - here they are at Home Depot.

My dad and I took turns and shifts to complete this wall over a couple week period.  You have to fit work in when you can sometime.  To get correct spacing we used brick spacers and adhered the bricks to the wall with SimpleSet Thin Set Mortar

Luckily for me I have my dad around and he took a load of bricks home and cut them in half to fit the smaller blank spaces you see above.

To fill in the spaces between the bricks we used a pastry bag.  It was not the most time friendly and you hand definitely hurt after but the final product was worth it.  

Not having this wall done was my excuse for not finishing other kitchen projects... guess it's time to start working on the kitchen more...

So it begins

I decided when I moved in and saw all the great molding that it would need to be an accent color. 

After looking at paint samples tapes next to my front door for a week I came to the decision of Ralph Lauren's Black Basalt. It's inbetween dark gray and a black. 

Entry way before

Entry way before

I started by painting my entry way door and the frame. Now I just need to tackle the rest of the house...

Ta da!! 

Ta da!! 

It's amazing what a little contrast paint can do to an area! 

kitchen update

Still have a long ways to go in the kitchen but for only being in the house for 5 months a lot has been completed.  

We hid the ugly water damage!! YAY!!!

We hid the ugly water damage!! YAY!!!

I split up the oven and fridge so that they each actually have room to function and doesn't feel as cramped.

I split up the oven and fridge so that they each actually have room to function and doesn't feel as cramped.

The cabinets have been painted white on top and blue on the lower half. Now that I'm done with it all I'm not feeling the blue and these may be dark gray very soon.  

The cabinets have been painted white on top and blue on the lower half. Now that I'm done with it all I'm not feeling the blue and these may be dark gray very soon.  

After the photo above this one was taken I got time to paint the inside of the cabinets. I took the doors off and I'm using these as "open shelving."

After the photo above this one was taken I got time to paint the inside of the cabinets. I took the doors off and I'm using these as "open shelving."

 

Items left on the kitchen: 

-finish brick corner - half bricks, seal, grout

-shelf on brick wall  

-repaint lower cabinets

-figure out a circular rug (My mom brought this DIY to my attention yesterday Make Your Own Rope Rug)

-doggy feeding station

-doggy wall toy pouch

-art work  

-tile counter tops (the dream, way way way down the road) 

**To see what the kitchen looked like at move-in take a peak at the (Before) House Tour Link at the top.

DIY Ottoman under $100

I made this ottoman 2 years ago when moving into my first solo apartment. I was trying to find one online and any large ottoman was pricey. I decided I'd give it a DIY try and see how well I could do. 

I looked on Pinterest trying to figure out the best way to make one and created an attack plan.

  1. Materials I Used
  2.  2 x 4's
  3.  plywood square
  4. 4 decorative fence toppers (these will be used as your feet)
  5. decorative wood trim (optional)
  6. spray adhesive
  7. foam - I used 4in thick
  8. muslin
  9. quilt batting
  10. staple gun
  11. fabric
  12. drill
  13. screws

Decide how large and what shape you want. Start out by cutting your 2 x 4s into 4 equal lengths (if you want a square) with a 45 degree angle on the end. Nail these together to create your base

Nail a fence topper to each corner to create the feet. 

I used nailed decorative trim on the sides of the 2x4 to give it more of a finished look and painted it all white. 

Take your plywood, this should be cut to be the same size as your 2x4 frame. Cut and arrange the foam on top to completely cover the wood surface. You are creating the cushion part 

on top.  

I had troubles finding foam the exact size so I pieced it together to cover it. Use your spray adhesive to permanently attach the foam to the wood. 

To eliminate the lines that piecing the foam together created and add a little more height I used a layer of quilting batting. 

I also layered muslin prior to my final fabric to help smooth these lines out even more. I attached it in the same manner as the final fabric that I describe below. 

I ordered this fabric from fabricguru.com. Sometimes it's easier for me to scroll through pictures than wonder around aimlessly at the fabric store. Fabric guru will send you a sample square for a $1 so you can feel and see it before ordering. 

Place your fabric with outside face down. 

Place your ottoman top down, plywood up in the center of your fabric. 

Start on one side and use your staple gun to attach the fabric to the plywood. 

I did the two opposite sides first, then the next two. I wrapped the corners like you would with a present. 

Once all the fabric is stapled you can cut off any excess that you have.

To connect the top to the base use your drill and screws that are long enough to reach through the 2x4 and anchor to the plywood. 

Flip over...

YOU HAVE AN OTTOMAN!

This time around I just recovered it and the design allowed me to reupholster it in about 20 minutes. 

-Madeline

Bathroom (in progress)

Last week one evening I was super impatient and just grabbed a sample size can of gray that I had left over from another project and started painting. I can be slightly impulsive and impatient. Sometime it works out and others, not so much...

This time it worked!

Here are some lovely before shots.



Mid-week the wood had been painted gray. 


The rest of the bathroom needed to be painted as well. I decided I'd enjoy my long weekend painting my bathroom instead of going to Sasquatch (sarcasm).

See how yellow-y the old white was?

So bright, white, and clean!

Here is a good shot to show the difference in the old and new white.   

Ahh look at how much better it looks!!

Such a BIG difference with just a little (a lot) of paint. 

Sooner or later I may replace the hardware. There is so much storage (not complaining), it ends up being pricey replacing that many handles.