In the midst of vacuuming up Cheerio crumbs and cleaning the doggy nose art from our back door windows as we prepared for our 27-guest big family Thanksgiving last week, I realized that I hadn’t really posted a house tour yet.
Since the last one was pretty much a slew of completely blank before shots, and we are hitting the official 1 year move-in anniversary, it was high time I made something happen. Hey, the house was already clean (which never happens) as we prepared for Thanksgiving. Might as well trapse through the house to document with the camera, right?
I’ll give you the disclaimer now:
We owned exactly one sad looking sofa, a pair of tiny bookshelves, a crib, a dresser for our daughter’s nursery, and that was it.
We lived in a 1 bedroom 700 square foot apartment in our first year of marriage before moving in with my parents for a year and a half when Olivia came along as Robert finished college on the GI Bill and I worked as a high school English teacher.
We had very little furniture and hardly any extra money to buy anything to decorate our house this time last year, but we had very big dreams.
I have three tips for you, my budget-conscious friends:
Check Craigslist every day
Visit thrift stores every chance you get
Believe in the power of paint
We bought our everything-builder-grade house because it made the most sense for our budget and we decided, from there, to customize it for our eclectic cottage style. It was a total blank canvas. We have a long way to go, but I’m pretty amazed at what we’ve achieved in a year on an extremely low budget.
We still have a little ways to go on this room, and a few projects are on our wish list for 2015 (that you’ll be seeing in a few weeks). We found a Pottery Barn pedestal table ($250) on Craigslist. I madeover a set of 1970s dining chairs ($40 each), and I madeover a Craigslisted chandelier using rope ($20).
Breakfast Nook 1 Year Ago
(plus my mother-in-law there)
Breakfast Nook In Progress
Since I’ve gotten to know my style a little better in this first year, I’ve thought about getting rid of the red in this space, but with Christmas coming up, I’m loving it!
We created the clock gallery wall ($100 total) using items found in the clearance aisles of Target and Garden Ridge. I repurposed the table runner (free) from an old window panel. We replaced the builder grade light by selling it on Craigslist and buying a new one from World Market in order to get it half price ($40 out of pocket after profit from previous light). I madeover the existing bar pendant lights ($10 each) for an industrial look.
Kitchen 1 Year Ago
Kitchen In Progress
This space still has a lot on the wish list (my lust for white cabinets will never fade), but we painted a chalkboard wall ($12), added a handlettering decal ($6), and sold the builder grade flushmount light to help in the cost of a new, more custom one.
Not much has happened in here yet except we replaced the builder grade mirror with one from HomeGoods ($40), I madeover the existing builder grade light ($6) and made some simple burlap wall art ($10). We painted using Valspar paint in the Sherwin Williams color Sea Salt.
So far for the backyard, we added a playground (gift from Olivia’s grandparents), removed brush, graded it, and seeded the yard (free HUGE favor from Robert’s father).
Office 1 Year Ago
For this space, we found a Craigslisted Pottery Barn desk ($180), painted an old desk chair ($65), and found several Goodwill decor items like a typewriter ($9), globe ($6), and desk lamp ($5). We painted with Valspar paint using the Sherwin Williams color Pediment.
Olivia’s Bathroom 1 Year Ago
Olivia’s Bathroom In Progress
We wanted to make this bathroom kid-friendly, but not too childish for guests (so hot pink Hello Kitty was out, I guess). We painted using Valspar paint in the Sherwin Williams color Sea Salt. Most of the decor items came from Goodwill and the clearance aisles of Hobby Lobby, Target, and HomeGoods. (Sorry for the badly lit photos. Bathrooms are tricky to photograph.)
Olivia’s Bedroom 1 Year Ago
Olivia’s Bedroom In Progress
We’re still transitioning from the crib to the bed for little miss Livie Bug (the crib is hiding in the corner of the room in this shot), but so far I have madeover a thrifted bed ($25), painted a Goodwill dresser ($15), installed an Ikea light ($50), spray painted an old mirror (free- already owned), and made a no-sew canopy ($20).
Master Bathroom 1 Year Ago
Master Bathroom In Progress
So far, we have replaced the builder grade mirrors with a pair we found on sale at Kirkland’s ($30 each) and brought in an old ladder (free) we found in my in-laws’ barn. Paint is Valspar brand with Sherwin Williams color Pediment.
The master bedroom, playroom, and laundry room haven’t really been touched, but we’ll get to those eventually.
The best part of all- despite living on one small income, we’ve been able to remain debt-free besides our mortgage and still manage to decorate. Thrifting and Craigslisting works, y’all! (Psst. Check out my tips for decorating with no money if you don’t believe me.)
So that’s the grand tour! I hope it will be twice as grand next year for our 2 year move-in anniversary. We have a lot more to do, like paint several of our still primer white rooms, but I’m proud of how far we’ve come.
This week, I’ll be dragging out Christmas decorations! More on that later though. 🙂
You can find all of our projects here since we moved in. Hope you enjoyed it!