Finally did some updates to our bedroom. We live in a house built in the early 1940’s. It is a very well-built house, good bones as they say, but we have been here nearly 21 years and have never been able to do a whole lot in terms of upgrading and maintenance, much less improvements. We never did anything with our bedroom, pretty much just painted, ripped out the old carpet, mopped the floors and set up our bed. We have scraped together furniture various ways over the years, castoffs mostly, a few yard sale or thrift store purchases. Nothing new except about ten years ago we bought a new couch and love seat for the living room. We purchased bunk beds new for the boys, and that’s the only new stuff we have ever bought. I never minded much. Grew up in a family that passed things along amongst one another, simple country background. I got pretty tired during this process, had a point when I was a little down and got discouraged about having to scrimp and scrape, but I am pretty creative and was up-cycling and re-purposing long before it became a “thing”, and actually feel pretty good about it when I accomplish something like this. I like stuff that has a history. And so many people get rid of good stuff with a lot of life left in it just because they see something new they like better. I never could stand to see someone take an appliance to the dump that still had life left in it because I know from experience there is someone out there who would be very glad to take it because they can’t afford a new one. I was blessed to get a washing machine that way once. It lasted many more years too! I am thankful for what we have, and I know I will enjoy being able to go into our own room and sit there and read or do other stuff when I want solitude.
My son told me that his girlfriend said to him recently that “everything in your house is so old. It must feel like coming into another century when you come to my house”. He responded with “well, that’s because we use stuff until it falls apart”. That same week his girlfriend’s parents bought her a new car, when she didn’t even want a brand new one, but her dad was tired of working on her old one and just wanted her to have one that runs well. Her mom found something she liked while shopping for the daughter, and so she went right out and bought a new car for herself also. I’m not saying that is wrong. Just seems foolish to me. Everyone knows that when you buy a new car, it depreciates immediately so why not buy something that is a year or two old instead and save a few thousand bucks!? You get a similar benefit from used furniture. Let someone with more money buy it new. There are people who make a decent living taking the things someone just got tired of, and making them into something different or unique. I love doing that!
Well, anyway, back to the makeover. My husband painted, I made most of the art, but also did some nifty freshening up of old art my kids did over the years. I sewed the new cover for the footstool, and then shopped thrift stores, dollar stores, WalMart, and eBay for the rest, then swapped out some things from other rooms in the house.(My friend Shannon calls it “shopping your own house”. I gave up the two dressers I had, and took a chest of drawers from my son’s room and his old toy chest. The chest of drawers was already the color I needed and was not really a color suited to a teenage guy’s room. When we got it for fifteen bucks at a local “junk store”, I offered to buy paint for my son to paint it, but he didn’t care enough to mess with it. That was the older son, now the younger son is in that room and “inherited” the thing, and he is much more particular. So, he got two pieces of furniture that are in much better condition, and I got the older chest of drawers that I don’t have to paint, plus the toy chest which is already white and can serve as a seat as well as for storage of whatever clothes are not currently in season. Houses this old don’t have much in the way of closet space, because back when they were built, folks had a couple of good pairs of daily wear clothes, one Sunday-go-to-meetin’ outfit, a coat, and a pair of shoes or two. It’s ridiculous how much we have now-a-days. I haul stuff to Goodwill on a regular basis, but it still piles up.
Sometimes someone pretty much forces their stuff on you. Last time I had hauled a bunch out and freed up all this wonderful space, only to have my neighbor move and by virtue of being present, she just kept giving me stuff. She was grieving, she was pushing to get through it all, I didn’t want most of it, but when someone is sentimental and having to get rid of stuff (her husband had died and she was moving in with her son) they like to think that someone they know is going to have it, as if it could possibly mean to the recipient what it did to the one who has to get rid of it. I hold loosely to “stuff” as it is. The first time I discovered how liberating it felt to get rid of things, I couldn’t wait to find more to get rid of. And I STILL have way too much! Once a year for several years our boys went to West VA to spend time with their WV grandparents. That was when I sifted through and got rid of old toys, out-grown clothes, did painting and cleaning and rearranging in their rooms. My husband did the painting mostly, but when they were babies, I had their room done in a Pooh Mural, all four walls, and made the curtains, etc. Then when they were a little older, we redid it in a space theme with just one wall mural. My husband is a good artist too. I think we both shared that project.
Well, as far as changing my room, I needed color really bad. Now I have it! If you ever watched the Big Bang Theory on T.V., look at the apartments of those characters on that show, that is how much color I love!!!
So, here is the view as you walk in the bedroom. High ceilings in these old places, and fairly good sized rooms. The chair belonged to my Grandma Ward, my mom’s mom. As did the footstool.
The orange slipcover was on sale at Wayfair
The artwork is all family stuff, some by my sons, my Mom, and me.
My wardrobe, hubby’s chest of drawers and mine that matches the walls
Jeweled Damask bed quilt and shams by Better Homes and Gardens from Walmart
I upcycled some of my favorites of the kid’s artwork, adding funky pre-cut quilt squares from WalMart
This collage has been around for several years, contains combination of family pics, kid’s artwork from school days, and the cameo in the center is of my boys, done by me, while the two face-forward sketches were done by my niece, an art major. If you look closely you can see me dressed as the Cat in the Hat, and my boys as Thing 1 and Thing 2. The top tells what Isaac’s names mean, the bottom tells what Benjamin’s names mean, and down the sides are the meanings of my husband’s and my names. At the top of that collage is one of my infamous actual gold ladybugs (tortoise beetle). I had a really good zoom lens on that camera! The oval floral on the right at bottom is actually an altered art piece. My mom did several flower paintings in the Donna Dewberry style, and I did a 3-D effect by quilling some tiny paper rolls to set some of the flowers int he bunch at a higher level from the wood mount than others, and also behind the butterfly. I didn’t have room to frame and hang so many similar paintings, so I combined them. I love doing 3-D diorama type pieces. I used to gather up old bulletins from church, and cut the pretty pictures up and make stuff like that by layering. I think my aunt still has one I made when I was fourteen.
Other collage of similar combo of kid’s pics and kid’s drawings, as well as one artistic photo of mine of a local Japanese garden, flowers on the left by my Mom, and the Cookie Monster and Peacock by my younger son. The bottom right one was done when he was four, at my grandma’s kitchen table. With markers and glitter glue. It’s hard to see, but he drew images that looked like angels so we titled it “Angels from Heaven holding Mommy up”.
These are old dollar-store items that came with resin roosters on them. I removed the roosters and made “bouquets” out of old brooches. I made the bird from a wood cut-out. She sparkles too! I love things that sparkle. It doesn’t have to be a diamond!
I hand-sewed this cover for the footstool that I had reupholstered once before. It is older than I am. Maybe even older than the house, lol. The fabric cost me four bucks.
My kitty Rascal, that I painted, and the cute fake kitty that looks almost just like him.
This is a rag rug, made of leather strips woven in India. Sixty bucks! Yes, those are my toesies in the pic. The rug is seven feet by five.
The boy’s childhood bears! Their new home is atop my cedar wardrobe.
Another dollar store item that I re-did. I made the purple morning glory out of actual home made flour play-doh. The frame has bamboo backing. They had a metal die-cut apple in one and I think a chicken in the other. I yanked those babies off, and did my own thing. The hummingbird in the top one is an old car air freshener that had lost it’s fragrance. I painted it. The morning glory also has some beads and a gold ladybug I made from clay, and her little antennae are copper wire.You can barely see her on the right side of the morning glory there.
I like this saying and saw it on a lot of little plaques in the stores, but instead of coughing up seven bucks, I came home and drew my own with sharpies.
The bicycle painting cost me six bucks. It is 30 inches by 30 inches. Got it at Rose’s Dept. store. The good thing about living in a podunk town is we still have stores like that. The verse in the bottom picture represents when the Lord delivered me out of my depression. Above that is a beautiful old plate with painted birds and blooms on it. Paid a dollar and 25 cents for that at Goodwilll
Here’s the verse up close.
I used fabric scraps to re-cover this old lamp that was given to me by the friend who moved but this was something I definitely wanted. Love this fabric! Six bucks for that, and made a table skirt out of it as well. Didn’t get a pic of that.
My sleep-related promises mean a lot to me, since I have narcolepsy.
So I just wrote them out in sharpie and popped them into colorful $1.oo frames from the Dollar Tree store.
This pic didn’t show up well, the flower is a silk flower from a small pick also from the dollar store
Here is my bedside table, already painted the top bright green, the rest of it is white, and that’s a Pioneer Woman placemat from Walmart for $3.49 on top.
The old toybox we bought at a yard sale, and painted and my husband repaired the hinge.
Small cabinet on the left was some guy’s woodshop class project from a few decades ago, that he sold in his yard sale. I’ve had it a few years. The white one also was a yard sale item, serving me well for my collection of vintage jewelry and the jewelry I make. The boxes on top, one was a container for an art set one of the kids got when they were little. I gave it to my Mom, and she never found a good use for it, and I just got it back recently. I padded the inside, used one of those pre-cut quilt squares and made compartments in it for necklaces and things, and on top of that is a cigar box, which I have made three jewelry boxes from,. Now the boxes are in the drawers but I had them on the wall before and they were cute that way. I hot-glued hooks in them so my beaded necklaces could hang inside them. I haven’t made a cigar box purse yet, but my husband has made a couple of cigar box guitars! Don’t you just love the color of those drapes? Oh, and the colorful tree with the yellow bird? I make those from copper wire and the colorful florist wire you can buy at Dollar Tree. Then I put different beads on there. This is one of the biggest ones I made, although I made my niece one in red-white-and blue, with lights even! She was born on the 4th of July. The base of it is a Salvation Army find, I got three. They are heavy, like maybe meant to be used as a lamp base. Perfect for making my trees. I did one in a bottle too. I mean, not in the bottle like a ship-in-a-bottle, but “growing out of” a bottle. That one went to my friend at Thanksgiving. Oh, and that chair, I got that for five bucks at a yard sale, and it is a really nice one. Guess what it says on the back of it? .
Commonwealth of Virginia, Department of Corrections. It’s just a sticker, but I thought that was kind of cool and left it on there, lol.
I think this monkey my older son drew with black sharpie, looks a little like George Bush.
Older son did this tree. Reminds me of being a kid and laying on the grass watching cloud-pictures.
Younger son did Cookie Monster
And younger son did peacock.
This box just exactly fits under the chair for storage of some of my many photo albums!
Had to go back and get the picture of that sticker on back of the chair anyway, so I snapped one of the table skirt, which also shows the carpet remnant (blue) one of the throw rugs, and the bottom of the sea-blue sheer curtains I covered the closet with, as a door just takes up too much valuable space! I need to hem those, though, then I will be finished!
Here is a short video walk-through. Sorry about the camera noise. (What’s that clickin’ noise?) At the end, you will see a figure of a girl in a purple dress. This was a piece of ROCK I found on our honeymoon and painted to look like a girl sitting among flowers. Then there is a jewelry box made from a tea box, decoupaged with vintage images, and the box at the end is one my husband made.
Including the 9×12 bound Berber-style remnant, the throw rugs, new window blinds, paint and rollers, curtains, bedspread, shams, bed skirt (not here yet) new sheets, art and art updates, fabric, slipcover, and curtains, the total cost was six hundred bucks.