My Kitchen Counter DIY Disaster

The title is a a little misleading as my kitchen counter DIY was not a total and complete disaster. In fact, everyone that enters my kitchen say they love it! But I think they are straight up lying to my face.

Before we even bought this house I knew the counters had to go. I don’t totally hate laminate, but our counters were this terrible blue laminate that I wasn’t feeling. After reading countless blog posts talking about using Ardex concrete feather finish to give your counters a concrete look, I was totally confident my kitchen could look amazing.

Here is what my kitchen looked like before:

 

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I decided to jump headfirst into the project one Friday afternoon and as soon as I put the first goop of concrete on the counter, I knew I had made a terrible mistake. It was really hard to spread out and get it even on my counters. It was IMPOSSIBLE to get it to look right on that little lip on the wall. I kept going hoping it would get easier and it did get a little better after I was more used to it.

After putting the first layer on and letting it dry you have to sand it down. That process is when I realized I had gotten myself into a lot more than I could handle. The mess was insane and I was having a giant panic attack. I didn’t take a whole lot of pics of the process, but here are a few.

 

 

So after three day’s of layering and then sanding, I decided to call it quits on just half the counters. After I sealed it, it actually didn’t look half bad and I thought I would finish the rest of the counters one day when I could handle the mess again.

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I used a super food safe sealer, which looking back was silly. We don’t ever cut directly on the counter, so I could have gone with something less food safe. About three days after our project we started getting huge stains on the counter. Three months later here is what it looks like.

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NOT GOOD. If you have the patience and get the right sealer, I would really recommend this project for a cheap way to update the counters. I am not patient so that was my first mistake going into the project. I also hate create giant messes, and having everything in my kitchen covered in dust was not good for my sanity.

So whats next? We are getting poured concrete counters made right now! The actual stuff, not this fake powder stuff. I’m really excited about it, even though it is not cheap. I’ll keep you updated!

 

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Picking Wood Look Tile

When we bought our house the floors were not really a selling point. The main living space has laminate, which luckily is not super ugly laminate. The bedrooms have carpet, which I HATE. I am not on the carpet train. Sure your feet have something warm and fluffy to walk on, but its typically ugly and just waiting to be stained.

We planned to eventually replace the carpet, but our plans got moved from the future to the present after the introduction of a new kitten.

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She make look cute, but she is a little monster and decided she didn’t like the carpet one bit. I’ll spare you the gross details, but our bedroom carpet had to be removed immediately.

We considered hard wood for about 3 seconds, but with four cats, tile is a way better option. Tile is wayyyy more durable than hardwood. You can spill liquids and don’t have to worry as much about scratches. With the wood look tile we could get the best of both worlds.

I didn’t want to spend more than $2 a sq foot, so we headed to Floor and Decor to see what options they had. Floor and Decor has some pretty good options, but there are ENDLESS wood tile options at other retailers as well. You can end up spending a lot of money getting really quality wood look tile.

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I knew I wanted something not too dark and something with a lot of pattern variation. I bought samples of these three to see how the looked in my home.

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The one on the left was the most expensive at $2.29 a sq foot, but it had the most pattern variation and grey undertones. Even though it was over our budget,  we decided to “splurge” since it would only end up being about $200 extra in total to go with this one and we liked it so much more than the others.

We got a few quotes on getting the tile professionally installed, but tile laying is expensive. It would have doubled the cost of the project to get it professionally done. My Dad has some previous tile experience, so we decided to do it ourselves.

Up next: Carpet Removal!

 

 

Dining Room Update

I know you all have been waiting with baited breath to take peek into my dining room! Well maybe not, but it is always fun to see how other people have decorated a space.

My dining room started as a blank space. The first thing we did when we bought the house was paint the living space white. After we painted it white I realized our trim and ceiling are not white, so that was fun surprise that will get fixed eventually.  Here are some before pics for your viewing pleasure.

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And now for some afters!!!!!

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The dining table and matching chairs, china hutch, and wicker chair are all things I had before. The china hutch was previously a bright teal. I painted it black to make it a little more neutral.

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I think I need to paint the inside of the cabinet to make all my pretty plates pop out a little more, i’m just not sure what color yet. I just stacked all that art up there to make it look a little taller since the ceilings are so high, but I probably should curate it a little more. I also now spot that one of the drawers is missing some hardware. My bad….

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I am aware that my dining table has a large stripe on it. The table is old, and the leaf was obviously not used as much. I plan on refinishing the table to bring it back to it’s glory days. We usually don’t have the leaf in all the time, so it’s really on the bottom of my list.

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I got that bar cart a few weeks ago at a vintage show and it only cost me $50! It really classes up my drinking habits. Please try and ignore the tiny tiny art, I just put that there for now as a place holder. I am on the lookout for something amazing and bigger for that corner.

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I got that cowhide rug in Round Top and it is #bestrugever! One of our cats straight up peed on it the other day and it just wiped right off. I love an indestructible AND pretty rug.

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All my chairs are mismatched because of my desperate need for more chairs for the holidays, but i’m starting to really get into the mismatched look.

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I am planning on making a plant bench for this window so all my plants can feel like something special instead of just cast off’s on the floor. I already have the legs for the bench, I just need to get my butt to the salvage yard to pick up some wood.

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That wall hanging was made by yours truly and it took me 20 hours. My cat tried to “help” me make it, so it took twice as long as it should have.

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So there you have it! What is still left? My house is in desperate need of some art. The ceiling and trim needs to be painted white. Table needs to be refinished. I also have a chandelier that is going where that ceiling fan is, and a plant bench to make so stay tuned!

 

A Bathroom Refresh

An old friend of mine contacted me after seeing a few of my blog and Facebook posts and asked if I could help give her guest bathroom a refresh. Even though I have no experience in design and absolutely zero training, I thought about it for about ten seconds then promptly said YES. Who wouldn’t jump at the chance to tell another person what to buy? DREAM SITUATION.

She didn’t want to do any major construction, just give it some new life with  paint, new lighting, and some styling. Here are a few before pictures of the bathroom.

 

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The bathroom certainly is not terrible. It’s probably what most of our bathrooms look like. For someone who doesn’t want to gut a bathroom, there are a ton of simple changes you can make to make it feel brand new.`

My plan is pretty simple: update light fixtures, paint walls, paint cabinets, new hardware, style with some accessories. There is a faux brick floor, so I had to keep that color in mind when deciding on paint colors for the wall and cabinets. The walls have a VERY heavy texture. It’s the heaviest texture I have ever seen and removing the texture wasn’t in the budget for now so I suggested a bright white to hopefully camouflage the texture as much as possible. I also recommended a light grey for the cabinets to give the bathroom some color.

Here is some of my inspiration pictures that show the feel we are going for.

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We are in the early stages for this bathroom refresh…pulling products and accessories. I’ll give y’all an update soon when paint goes on the walls!