Experience Counts: Part II, The Downstairs!

29 Mar

Long time no post! We have been trying to get everything squared away to close on “The Pink Monster” but I will save that for another post!

In the last post I told you that we sold most of our furniture on Craigslist and hit up Ikea for replacements. This is how it went down.

Living Room

We love the idea of a sectional sofa or even just a sofa with a built in lounge. Unfortunately our town house didn’t have enough room for a sectional or a built in lounge. We opted for the Karlstad for a few reasons. I liked that the sofa had a removable and washable cover. We have two big dogs and a cat so being able to wash off slobber and fur is the BEST! Second the dimensions fit our town home perfectly and there is always room to grow with the Karlstad. Yep, that’s right. Those arms come right off and you can add a lounge or a corner piece to make it into a sectional! Lastly, it’s pretty comfy. Now don’t get me wrong, it’s not a napping couch but it’s great for tv surfing and the occasional movie night.

Living Room

Since the wall we put the sofa on was so small there wasn’t really room for side tables so we opted to add a floating shelf behind the sofa to hold our lamps and as a surface to rest drinks, remotes, books, and whatever we may have on hand while relaxing. The shelf is the Lack from Ikea. We also purchased the lamps, mirror, and flower pot there.

Living Room

I wanted a TV console that would take up as little visual space as possible so I really liked the idea of mounting one to the wall. We found this Besta series cabinet and purchased the glass doors so that the cable and Wii remotes would still work. As you can see we added another Lack shelf as a display space. We purchased a Poang and a Tullsta chair for additional seating. I recovered the Tullsta chair with some Alexander Henry fabric to liven it up a bit. The ottoman which is kindly referred to as the “muffin” is an ottoman for us at times but it’s main purpose is a dog bed. I came up with the idea and Brian helped me bring it to life. I covered it with a white marine grade vinyl from a local fabric shop and it has really held up well to the abuse the dogs give it. I love that it’s so easy to clean!

Kitchen/Dining Room

As much as I liked the idea of having darker cabinets I just didn’t like the way they looked when we refinished them. We used a all in one stain which was our first mistake and our second mistake was the color. It was just too dark for that little kitchen. So we re-refinished them. Let me tell ya… that was a hard one to talk Brian into. I had to do A LOT of sweet talking! I knew I wanted white on top but I didn’t want the black appliances to stick out like sore thumbs so I chose a gray color in the counter tops and painted the bottom cabinets out in that. We also took out a bar that the builder used to separate the kitchen and dining area. I don’t have a great before photo to show you for that. We took down the bar’s wall and turned into on very large workspace that the kitchen needed desperately. I knew I wanted to do a fun backsplash but wasn’t sure what to do. Then I saw a great post over on Apartment Therapy on wallpaper backsplashes and knew that was just what we needed. I found Mystique by Graham & Brown and fell in love.

So here the kitchen is in all of it’s finished glory!


That butcher block counter is where we took down the bar. It really helped open up the kitchen.

We didn’t really do much in the dining room except paint and curtains. Brian built me the table and the chairs are the Gilbert chairs, again, from Ikea. He is just so good! I come up with the ideas and he figures out how to make them happen. Must be the engineer in him!

Dining Room

I have the table all set up with snacks for our open house in this photo.


I mentioned in the last post that the white vinyl fence and the concrete patio wreaked havoc on my patio furniture cushions. Brian came up with a great way to keep the sun at bay but still allow light into the kitchen! He looked at me one day and said, “I am going to build a pergola.” After telling him it was a great idea he did a little research via “the Google” as I like to refer to one of my besties and then off to the home improvement store he went… in our Honda Accord. Believe it or not he got all the lumber home and with a little help from me and my brother, Matthew, he built this guy!

Patio with Pergola

We weren’t allowed to attach it to the house since our home was a town home and technically we didn’t own the outside. So we improvised and put it on concrete deck post supports. It worked perfectly and it was a great spot for having breakfast, reading a book, or even entertaining guests with the occasional fire. The table doubles as a fire pit.

So that’s all for this post! In the last of this whole little series I will go over what we did to the upstairs. Mostly just paint and a bit of trim but I will give you the tour anyway!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: