Mudroom Makeover

On a farm, a mudroom is essential. It’s where you take off your muddy boots and hang up your coat after you’ve done the chores. Honestly, most of the muddy things get left in the garage at our house, but the mudroom is the next place you step into. And when you’re not muddy, it’s nice to have a place to hang your coat and leave your shoes.

The mudroom walls started out off-white, just like the rest of the house. And when the painter asked me if I would like it painted, I said, “nah”, with a wave of my arm. (Silly me.) I thought it would give some dimension. Instead it looked like we forgot to paint the mudroom.

IMG_9883Years ago, I picked up this cute little bench at a garage sale for $10. It had caught my eye (since it was green and had cute hearts on the sides), but I decided after bringing it home that I wanted it blue. It fits perfectly in the space between the garage door and laundry room door and serves as a space for my husband’s shoes (which, quite honestly, are too big to fit in the closet neatly)! 🙂
IMG_9882 Several months after we moved in, I couldn’t take the “unfinished” look anymore and decided to paint the mudroom.
IMG_9881This was one of those afternoon projects that I’d been procrastinating starting. Once I saw the color on the wall, it was so gratifying to just get it done! (So just start!) 🙂

IMG_9887IMG_9886After the walls were done (in Olympic “Royal Palm”), my blue bench no longer worked. It clashed like maroon damask and aqua polka dots. So I painted it white. (Spray paint with a satin finish.) Ah… much better! And I just love this sign that I picked up at Hobby Lobby-  it covers the alarm box perfectly.DSC_5281

May I introduce you to Greta? She’s my black angus cow. My brother-in-law is a welder and made her.

Here’s the wall before Greta.

DSC_3277Here’s the wall after Greta. I love looking over there and seeing her when I’m in the kitchen. She’s a happy cow.DSC_5283

Just a few hours of work, and our mudroom is stylish and welcoming. IMG_9881DSC_4714IMG_9883DSC_5267

Half Bath Transformation

The half bath in our house was covered from floor to ceiling in paisley wallpaper born in the early 90’s– for about a day. I think it was the first room we tackled when we signed the papers and received the key. Unfortunately I can’t find a before picture of the bathroom anywhere. Oh well. Just thought you’d appreciate the lime green more if you saw what we had to work with.

Over the years, I have removed/painted several rooms of wallpaper or borders that weren’t my style. So out came the Kilz primer (love that stuff!).

But from the moment the lime green was swiped across the wall, I was unsure. It was electric, for one. Don’t get me wrong, I do love this color. (The music room, guest room, and laundry room all wear it after all.) But in the small, windowless half bath, it was too much. (Who chose this color, anyway?) 😉 Even the wood floor reflected the green and looked yellowish in its glow. Besides, who needs an electrifying, energizing, and bright bathroom?? You get the point.


After I finished the hallway project, I had some “Sea Sprite” left over and decided to do what I had long planned to do in repainting the bathroom.

DSC_4854Immediately the mood of the bathroom changed to calming, soothing, and relaxing. The way a bathroom should be.

I did do one crazy thing in here.


What?! Yes, I spray painted the fixtures “oil rubbed bronze” while they were still on the wall! Obviously I didn’t mind if I got a little splatter on the green since it was getting painted anyway, so rather than hassle with turning off the electricity and taking down the light fixture and towel hanger, I opted for the lazy option. It actually worked quite well, although I’m sure some of you are shuddering at my bravery, er, laziness. Anyway. Much improved, don’t you think?DSC_4834

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Callie is my 15-year-old border collie/Australian shepherd dog. She follows me around everywhere and is a constant companion. But as much as I love her, I didn’t want her prints forever painted on the wood floor after she walked through the paint tray to get closer to me. Thanks, Cal.


The bathroom was coming along.

DSC_4853A few finishing touches were needed. One was the gold ends of the sink handles. I removed them and spray painted them silver.

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Next, the thrifted black shelf had to be painted. Hanging with the off-white shutters, it looked stark and intense. And since I had spray painted it the first time around, it was in need of some TLC.


I painted on about 3 layers of antique white, letting it dry between each coat.

DSC_4884When the final coat was dry, I used a rag and rubbed on some Zar stain, giving it a worn, vintage feel.


Ah. Much better.DSC_4929

DSC_4913The last project was to make something fresh to hang on the wall. I rummaged around in my garage and came up with a piece of barn wood that I had attempted to stencil at some point (a complete failure, by the way- the wood was way too ridged).

DSC_4906So I nailed a picture hanger on that side and attached a hose clamp to the good side with two small nails. (I tried screwing through the slats, but was unsuccessful.)

DSC_4909After filling a mason jar with pea gravel and potting soil, I grabbed one of the broken-off stems of houseplants that I keep in this jar and planted it in the soil. (Did you know that almost any plant will eventually grow roots if kept in water?) Also as a side note, did you know that houseplants improve air quality? NASA did a study on it. You can read about it here. I love houseplants!


Then I slipped the mason jar into place through the hose clamp.

DSC_4925The half bath is much improved and has a calm, relaxing, organic, soothing feel.


DSC_4913In case you forgot, here’s another look at the before:DSC_4839

Afternoon Hallway Facelift

It’s been long in coming. Every time I walked through the hall into our bedroom, I thought to myself, “Gotta paint this.” It just didn’t “flow” and felt choppy going from aqua to gray with the off-white sandwiched in the middle.

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Well, Monday, I did paint it. I had a quart size of Olympic “Sea Sprite” left over from the kitchen and office, and it was just the right amount. No fuss no muss. It took about 2 hours. (Cutting in took the longest… my least favorite part.)

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Do you like my step stool? I was being lazy and didn’t want to go out to the chicken house in the cold to haul in the dirty ladder, so I made do. It worked just fine. DSC_4832 DSC_4833I don’t know about you, but I’m a little bit of a messy painter. Paint usually ends up all over my hands and at least a smudge or two on my clothes. It’s always a good idea to wear frumpy work clothes. This time, I also wore an apron like my grandma when she cooks. 🙂

I used a wet paper towel to wipe around the doorframe where a little excess paint collected.
DSC_4828Wow! I do love the finished look! It’s amazing what a coat of paint will do!

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