One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Dark and cozy guest room reveal

Wooooooooowwwww. Even with an extra week, I almost didn’t make it.

When I first started, I thought this small room was going to be a breeze. I even thought it wasn’t worth doing the ORC for, since it wasn’t going to be that big of a change.

Then the ORC gods were like ‘lol, this girl.’

Ok. OK. Some of it may have been self inflicted. Why did self decide this was the time to learn how to build a bedframe and headboard from my brain and upholster it? In the last week. Oh, self, you’re a real pain in my ass.

But, you know what? It’s week 6 7 of the One room challenge and my guest room no longer resembles a crack den hovel!

If you’re wondering what my almost incoherent ramblings about what an ORC is, it’s a biannual event created and hosted by Linda, from Calling it Home. Designers, bloggers, whomever wants to join the madness; choose a room and have 5/6 weeks to complete the refresh/remodel/arson (JK. DON’T DO THAT) and blog weekly with their progress.

Fall 2015 / Spring 2016

I’m not a designer, and I’m barely even a blogger, but, I rate high in neuroticism and I like to spend money. So I’m pretty qualified.

Here’s where the room started: Continue reading “One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Dark and cozy guest room reveal”

One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Week 6 and we finally have paint.

It’s week 6 of the One Room Challenge and normally this would be the reveal post, but, I am so relieved for the extra week this round! If you’re new to the One room Challenge, it’s a biannual event created and hosted by Linda of Calling it Home. It’s usually the kick in the pants that most of us need to finish a project that we’ve been dragging out. Or is that just me? Thanks for creating this event with me in mind, Linda!

Anyways. We have 4 relatively tiny bedrooms upstairs. I chose to work on the guest room in my house for this round. I love my house, I chose it because I saw the potential and it desperately needed someone to love it. But. The walls are fucked up badly.

For this one tiny bedroom, I had removed the drywall and drywall screws to expose ugly green faux finish and make a planremove the faux finish, repair the walls with joint compound, stripped down the trim and sanded the walls, and then finally primed everything.

Continue reading “One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Week 6 and we finally have paint.”

One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Deferred gratification and a boring post

Welcome back to week 5 of the fall One Room Challenge! Created and hosted by Linda of Calling it Home. This is a bi-annual event for designers/bloggers/adrenaline junkies to choose a room to remodel/refresh/etc and blog weekly about their progress for 6 weeks. For the first time, it was extended a week to remove some pressure and stresses on participants that are dealing with fall out from natural disasters.

And, dang. Last week, I was ALL UP in my feelings.

My mood has improved much this past week because of PAINT! My god, what a essential thing visual progress is to the soul.

I had previously removed the drywall covering the plaster and all the drywall screws before I started the ORC.

For reference of what this room needed before I could even get to paint:

I introduced the room, that had metallic green faux finish on the walls. Next, I scraped off the faux finish with razor blades, to expose the state of the plaster underneath. I patched holes with drywall and cracks with joint compound. Finally, I sanded the walls and stripped all the trim to prep for primer/paint.

Here’s how it looked last week: Continue reading “One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Deferred gratification and a boring post”

One Room Challenge Fall 2017: My progress is an even UGLIER room than last week.

My finger prints are gone and I’m starting my career as a bank robber. Or perhaps a jewel thief.

I’m pretty much going to have to if I want to keep bankrolling these projects.

It’s week 4 of the One Room Challenge, created and hosted by Linda of Calling it Home, and this week has been tough. All the kind words of encouragement are what keep me going though, and that’s why I’m so appreciative of the challenge. THANK YOU!

Where it started: Here’s where I left it last week:

I am so, so tired and discouraged and I’ve either been wearing the same gross project clothes or the same sweater for several days because I’m too tired to care and I haven’t had a chance to do laundry. I have layers of paint under all my nails, blisters and super sore muscles. Project dust always makes me break out. I’ve been waking up at 3:00 am to double check my calendar on how much time I have and thinking about what needs to be finished. My alarm goes off at 6:00 am, so, that ain’t cool.

My body keeps threatening an ugly cry when I’m at work. Body, you fucking traitor.

To catch you up on what led me to this disastrous state: I previously showed the room I was working on, made fool hardy claims of ease, repaired the walls (much to my chagrin) and decided to strip the woodwork.


JK. Even if you tried to stop me, I’d still do it.

Continue reading “One Room Challenge Fall 2017: My progress is an even UGLIER room than last week.”

One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Let’s talk about walls. And my standards of ‘not so bad’.

Stop me if you’ve heard this story before (if you’re new to this blog, then it’s sure to be a riveting story): we bought this house from some house flippers that covered all the plaster walls with drywall. The walls looked nice, but projected farther than the baseboards and it irked the hell out of me. A few years ago, I started removing drywall, room by room, to expose varying horrors underneath.

This guest room is the 7th room in the house that I’ve been repairing in earnest and for some reason, although I have gotten a pretty good handle on it, I felt serious avoidance to putting the work in. Like, I found all sorts of other activities to do instead of work on those walls. Working my actual job longer days, watching kids movies (Hocus Pocus for the win) and idk, my fucking taxes? Basically, anything seemed better.

I removed the drywall and screws, and introduced the room.

But not myself? Which should be the biggest indicator of who I am. My name is Madeline, I am not a designer or real blogger (as evidenced by my many posting faux pas) and I am renovating my 100+ year old home as a hobby. I do all these projects by myself because my husband has no interest in them. I love hyperbole and pink.

Now back to the room.

Last week I scraped off the faux finish. What I was left with was the room with the least amount of cracks on the ceiling and walls, although I was still gifted with some huge chunks of wall/ceiling missing, cracks and tons of screw holes. And a seriously growing hatred for all the previous owners. The worst. Whenever I would get my dusty clothes on and mix up some mud, I barely worked on it and would abandon the walls for wine and justifications that I still have weeks.

That is the beauty that is the One Room Challenge though. Thanks to Linda, from Calling it Home, for creating this event. And all the amazing and inspiring participants! I can’t give ya’ll an ugly and crumbling room and I am running out of time.

Continue reading “One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Let’s talk about walls. And my standards of ‘not so bad’.”

One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Procrastination is expensive and also my default setting

Welcome back!

To brush you up, the One Room Challenge is a bi-annual event that is hosted by Linda from Calling it Home which facilitates bloggers choosing a room in need of love and 5 weeks to share progress and then a reveal. It’s such a great opportunity to GET SHIT DONE, and there’s so much support from fellow participants. It gives me all the fuzzies.

As per my routine, I announced that I would complete this project in a short amount of time, then I went and did other things – not related to my project.

And there I was, minding my own avoidance business and I was like “Oh shit! The roman shades!”

You see, I purchased the last 4 1/2 yards of Rose Gold Regency fabric from Tonic Living (here’s the gold version) a few months ago, and then it sat in it’s packaging.

Sometimes (all the time) in my head, once I have made a decision about something in my brain, it’s done? But not actually in reality.

So I reached out to someone on Etsy about sending the fabric and having shades made, and the price was reasonable and I was like great! Then I went to purchase the listing and the estimated time was 6-8 weeks. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO.

Continue reading “One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Procrastination is expensive and also my default setting”

One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Dark and cozy guest room

Well, damn. That was a long and unintended blog hiatus.

It was really more of an internet hiatus, if I’m being honest. It is depressing out there right now.

I seem to have two modes: On the couch with Netflix and wine or full blown DIY mania. I am 100% back on my bullshit.

I haven’t really been sure how to start, so, why not jump back in with a One room challenge?

Continue reading “One Room Challenge Fall 2017: Dark and cozy guest room”

One Room Challenge Spring 2016: Kid’s bedroom reveal!

Happy reveal day! It might be one of my fave days of the year.

If you’re unfamiliar with this bi-annual holiday, it was created and is hosted by Linda of Calling it Home. It gives bloggers an opportunity to destroy a room/home/bank account/relationships/sanity/nails/neglect all other responsibilities/etc over the course of 5 weeks and link the progress in the hopes of a new and beautiful finished room at the end.

And it is awesome.

Except that my body might be sore forever.

This is my second time participating. I did my living room this past fall. Reveal here.

The room that I chose to work on is one of the modestly sized bedrooms in our 110 year old south Minneapolis home, to create a new big girl bedroom as a surprise for my 5 year old daughter.

The beginning:

IMG_1149What a drag.

I didn’t end up getting much done for the second week. Sometimes when I start a project, I get so overwhelmed by the sheer amount of tasks that I go into the fetal position on the couch with wine. I know you feel me.

The original plaster was obvs in rough shape and needed a lot of work as far as patching holes and cracks, missing chunks of wall/ceiling and sanding smooth. IMG_1217This is about the point where I get a faraway look in my eyes and I start mumbling on repeat…. ‘I just have to get the primer up, everything is better after primer, so close’ while I’m putting tin foil up on the windows and donning a garbage bag as a dress.


Someone should put that on one of those inspirational posters with a kitten and a roller.


I ended up doing a drop ceiling with black paint, installed the stellar flush sputnik and my daughter helped choose the pale pink.

I thought that I was keeping most of the last minute details out of the previous post, to make the reveal more special, but no. I am deluded. I was just procrastinating. Let’s call it what it is. K, Madeline?


It was at this point that I had to make finial decisions.

The list:

Paint walls and trim
Scrub everything clean
Fix roman shades (FML) and install (the blisters!)
Assemble day bed, brackets, wood slats cut down (the bed is an antique and amazing. But one of the screws to attach the side piece had some stripped threading and wouldn’t go into the receiving part. I’m a motherfucking do’er though, so I used a hacksaw and removed that part and it worked!)
Acquire mattress and bedding (mattress is a twin and apparently I need a longer one. Le sigh. Why didn’t I take measurements?! Or, assemble previously… or have general foresight)
Hang chair
Create storage
Make pretty

Something as simple as picking a color for the little makeshift storage unit nearly broke me. It left me in the paint aisle practically feral and like: I can’t decisions no more.

I might not even be able to decide what words to use for this post.

Am I forming words?

Hopefully you all understand guttural sounds.


Decisions got made.

Pictures quality proved to be a bummer because it has rained every day for the past week. But, the room looks good. Real good.

IMG_1395 IMG_1397 IMG_1420IMG_1362 IMG_1405IMG_1352

Can we talk about the beautiful floral sculptures?

IMG_1356They are from a shop on etsy called DillyPad. Each piece is a masterpiece. I adore them.

And these dark floral roman shades?!IMG_1419I die.

Details on the antique daybed from craigslist:IMG_1359 DSC_1290Sarah from Lucent lightshop sent me the black sconce, and they gave it to me! For, like, keeps. Knock me over with a feather. I was about ready to pay a king’s ransom for it. The ORC desperation is real. It was super sweet of them.

Their craftsman ship is hella on point. I paired it with a faceted light bulb that I picked up from CB2. DSC_1288

This rug.berber wares "moroccan pouf" "rugsusa braided rug"The pictures online don’t do it justice. The braiding is really thick, maybe an inch wide? Really comfortable.

Pretty things like pillows! It’s the best when you get to clear a room out of tools and paint cans and put pretty shit in there. I love pretty.



The wall between the door and the closet door is kind of wasted because the door opens towards it. I painted a large circular chalkboard here to provide a space for creativity, that takes up no room. IMG_1371IMG_1370


I was so excited to tell Rylan about her new room. I was able to keep her out of there successfully the past weekend whilst I installed, to keep it a surprise. I acted out all the bad teenage movies though, awkwardly cracking the door and blocking it with my body when she would seek out my attention.

When I finished and my husband and I told her that it was for her, she was so happy and went straight to her dad to thank him and hug him.

I was like: what. the. actual. fuck.

Is this real life?!

I mean, he’s cool and all, but he did not make this room for her. He did supply moral support for me tho.

He told her that he should be thanking me (after accepting a pretty stellar hug), and only then did she direct her attention to me – the person who has been slaving, bleeding and sweating for 5 weeks for this room.

Ummm. Did she not see me with her own eyes doing all the work?!

I guess that about sums up what it’s like to be the mom.

I digress.

She was so verbally appreciative after that. I got to hear a lot of “You did all that work, for me?! I LOVE it.”

Then this happened: DSC_1287 So, so totally worth it.

Make sure to check out all the other completed rooms. Mind blowing!ORC



  • Paint colors (Behr Pale Bud, Sherwin Williams Tricorn Black, Benjamin Moore Hunter Green)
  • Daybed – Antique
  • Sputnik ceiling light – Lucent Lightshop
  • Moroccan Pouf and wedding blanket pillows – Berber Wares
  • Other bed pillows – Target
  • Chair pillows and blanket – Home Goods
  • Hanging Chair – Serena and Lily
  • Rug – RugsUSA
  • Roman shades – Fabric by Ellie Cashman design and sewn by Creative Drapery
  • Mirror – Antique
  • Cubby storage – ‘antique’ Ikea and waddell furniture legs
  • Planter – Target
  • Copper table light – West Elm
  • Brass side table – West Elm (no longer available in brass)
  • Pink throw and quilted blanket – West Elm
  • Copper basket – Target (maybe no longer available?)
  • Alarm clock – Teach me time clock (I don’t know if anyone else uses this, but, it is a life saver when your kid wants to wake up at 5am! We just started using it about 6 months ago and now she stays in her room until 6:45 daily)


One Room Challenge Spring 2016: Pre-reveal reveal post

It’s week 5 of the One Room Challenge, hosted by Linda of Calling it Home. That means that next week is the reveal and we all have one more week to pull it all together. I’m so excited to see everyone’s rooms!

Are you all ready to read another 1000 words about paint?


I spend a lot of my life painting. On Friday, I had to tell all my friends that I couldn’t be social ’cause I was too busy painting and deep conditioning my hair. I’m totally kidding, guys. I spend my Fridays painting and deep conditioning my hair…. I don’t have friends.

Here’s how the room started:IMG_1144If you’re curious about the progress from that point, check out weeks one, two, three, and four.

This room is small, but it still managed to take:

  • 1 gallon of oil based primer
  • 1 gallon of latex primer
  • 1 gallon of Tricorn black
  • 1 gallon of flat Pale Bud
  • 1 quart of satin Pale Bud

After I spent all that time painting the walls and trim with Behr Pale Bud (mixed in Valspar Aspire – I think the price and quality of this paint is excellent), they kind of just looked white, and not really pink at all.

Then I realized that I’m not going to waste hours of my life painting, and then stressing about an inoffensive pale pink white color. It’s subtle.

I knew that wine as a coping mechanism for anxiety was going to pay off some day.

Moving on. I went to Home Depot and rented their rotary laser level to mark off the line where the black and white pink would meet on the walls. It cost me $41 and was so, so worth it.

It took some work and precarious balancing on a tiny table to get the bubbles level. Then I saw where the line was on the walls and it was lower than I had envisioned in my minds eye.laser level laser level

Then I was like idgaf and left it where it was.

I’m totally so cold and calculating. I’m practically a super villain.

It only took me about 15 minutes to tape off the line and paint a thin coat of Pale Bud to fill any gaps.

A coat and a half of Sherwin Williams Tricorn Black (again mixed in Valspar Aspire), with paint pole snapping mid-painting, and I was pulling that tape off to reveal some fine lines.IMG_1260

I was like: Danggggggggggggggggg. That’s a crisp line, yo.


My rugsUSA braided rug arrived and I got all excited and put it down before cleaning the floor. The shape of the room, with the slanted door frame and radiator makes it a little tricky for the rug size. I went with a 6×9 to take up as much of the available space as I could.IMG_1275

The rug pad is MIA, but it turns out that this rug is so thick it might not even need one. I’ll still probably want to find out where it is out there in the world, since I paid monies for it. I’m terribly unreasonable.

The off white color of the rug helps the walls look a little more pink in contrast. IDK. I’m grasping at straws here.

After I put the rug down, my daughter saw the room and said “Mom! I love where you’re going with the room you’re working on!” to which I kept a cool demeanor on the outside and was like “fuck yeah!” and warm and fuzzy on the inside.

Another byproduct of the angled door and radiator is this shallow space:IMG_1271

It’s only like 14″ deep and limits what can be put here, without interfering with the whole walking into the room thing. That means a dresser is out. I thought about building something, but, let’s be real, I simply didn’t want to.

I remembered I have this wall thingy from ikea that I bought like 5 years ago. I am planning to put on some furniture legs and paint it. It should tuck right in there behind the hanging chair, and provide a little storage for books and stuffed animals and all the little shit that kids somehow accumulate without having money.

I worked on the roman shades. I was able to use some scrap 1x2s that I had laying around (it’s a normal thing to have scrap lumber hanging out) to make them less deep. I got one all done, and the second one is still on my list. I messed it up the first time, but now I know that I was doing way too much and should be able to fix it pretty easily. Removing all those staples again tho….. groans.

Basically, the room needs to be cleaned and will be prepped for the install. I feel so profesh calling it that.IMG_1266 IMG_1269 IMG_1267

Things left to do:

  • Paint walls and trim
  • Scrub everything clean
  • Rug
  • Fix roman shades (FML) and install
  • Assemble day bed, brackets, wood slats cut down
  • Acquire mattress and bedding (bedding is stupid expensive – even the tiny twin versions)
  • Hang chair
  • Create storage
  • Make pretty

Shit. Did I do anything this week?! List – you the worst.

At least my work trip was pushed back and I will be home the days leading up to the reveal.

Follow along on instagram also, and make sure to check out the other link ups.


One Room Challenge Spring 2016: Painting and chillin’

Welcome back! It’s week 4 of the One Room Challenge, hosted by Linda of Calling it Home. If you haven’t yet, make sure to head over there and check all the other rooms’ progress. It’s amazing what these bloggers can do in 6 weeks.

To bring ya’ll up to speed, week 1 presented a horribly pink room with a ton of nail holes and cracks in the plaster. Week 2 wasn’t much of an update at all (shame), and week 3 had a lot of progress with patching/sanding/priming the walls.

The rest of the past week was spent fighting off the beyhive because I’m Becky with the good hair painting. Between this bedroom and my dining room, it was a total of 2 coats of primer on walls/ceiling, all the trim/doors, 3 top coats on the ceilings and 1 on the dining room walls. My body is beat – and I don’t have a lot to show for it in the ORC room.

But I apparently have a lot of words to describe very little. Brevity isn’t my thing. I always suspected that was the case, but writing blog posts about paint has definitely proved it to be true.

Since the ceilings are fairly low in here, and one side slopes due to the roof, I decided to go on ahead and embrace that by painting the ceiling black. The room is so bright (which is good), but the dark ceiling gives the eyes a nice place to rest. I likes it.IMG_1242 IMG_1243

Between some coats, I took the opportunity to swap out the light switches for dimmer toggle versions, and installed a ceiling medallion and my Lucent Lightshop fixture. I turned it on and the angels sang.DSC_1250

It’s always a hassle for me to install new light fixtures with this old house. I never know what the ceiling pan situation is going to be like, and the included screws don’t usually fit. It took two trips to my local Ace Hardware (love that place) to get the right length screws that would work with the pan/ceiling medallion – but I was determined to install it.

Rylie was like :’Ummm. You’re having a hard time with that.’

Thanks for that astute observation, sweet little child.

Pink paint color swatches are very deceiving in their paint chip form. I felt all sorts of betrayal.

I chose 5 samples, they all looked rather innocuous on their tiny little squares and in their paint pots – until I got them up on the wall.Valspar Angel's Sigh, Behr Prelude to Pink, Behr Sweet Roses, Behr My Sweetheart, Behr Pale Bud

L-R – Valspar Angel’s Sigh, Behr Prelude to Pink, Behr Sweet Roses, Behr My Sweetheart, Behr Pale Bud

Sorry for the terrible picture. It’s been raining the past several days.

I like My Sweetheart actually, but it went way too peach for this room. Angel’s Sigh is terrible, just terrible.

So – I did what any normal person would do. I deferred to the 5 year old. She chose Pale Bud, the one I had in mind, actually. That will be this weekend’s project. Yaaaaaay. More painting.

Once the painting is done, I can start bringing some things in.

I ordered a rug, this one by RugsUSA. I have my fingers crossed that the “off-white” color works with the paint and upholstered day bed (a craigslist find.) I ordered it when it was 70% off, and then an additional 10%. Woohoo.

The hanging chair arrived! Such a relief that it’s in my greedy possession. The box was too big to get through both my front and back house doors, so I had to take it out and I am pretty sure I heard neighbors laughing at me whilst I struggled. WhatEvs. They’re probably just jealous they ain’t got it like that.

And. The big box provided the kids a lot of entertainment in the back yard. Until they started squabbling over turf and I came out with a box cutter and broke down their house. Life lessons.

I learned a life lesson also. I don’t know how to measure for roman shades. For the depth, I thought it was the depth of the WHOLE window casing, not only the casing directly around the window. So, they are too deep. I’ll have to figure out to how to retrofit them without completely messing them up.

Things left to do:

  • Paint walls and trim
  • Scrub everything clean
  • Rug
  • Fix roman shades (FML) and install
  • Assemble day bed, brackets, wood slats cut down
  • Acquire mattress and bedding
  • Hang chair
  • Create storage
  • Make pretty

Not too bad, all in all! I’m actually feeling a little guilty, like this room was too simple for the ORC, compared to how much work other people are doing.

Yikes. I hope that I don’t tempt the fates to mess up my life with that thought.

I can’t wait to see all the reveals in a couple of weeks.