Stylish powder room renovation

This really wasn’t a “renovation”. It was just paint. Since we had used non controversial paint colors in the rest of the house, I wanted to do something unexpected in the little powder room. I was on a purple jag for awhile so thought this eggplant color would be nice. I’m glad we did it in such a tiny room because it was a pain in the butt. Dark colors usually are, so we chose the higher end Benjamin Moore Aura paint in Bonne Nuit (and the trim was Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls). It probably worked better than some cheapo paint would have, but it still took several coats. Anyhow, it came out nice!

Powder room before and after. Benjamin Moore Aura Bonne Nuit

Powder room before and after. The paint is Benjamin Moore Aura Bonne Nuit.

The entry, stairs, and upstairs hallway- what a mess!

Our 1911 Craftsman house in Colorado Springs was in pretty good shape when we bought it but one of the problems it had was wallpaper in every room that had been painted over. Normally this doesn’t really bother me (Mike can’t stand it). However, in some places the wallpaper was starting to come off the wall and looked terrible. If we were going to stay in the house we eventually would have stripped it all off. But that’s a major undertaking and not one we had the time and energy to do. In all the other rooms we scraped off the really bad parts and just patched over it then painted, which worked fine. But the stairway was another thing. We included the downstairs entry, the stairs, and the upstairs hallway in the same project because they were all connected so we needed to paint them all the same color, even though we did them all at different times. We knew we were not going to be able to do a great job on painting the stairway with it’s high high ceiling, so we chose a color that matched what was already there so that if it came out messy it wouldn’t show as bad. The color that matched the best happened to be one we had already used in the office, Old Prairie from Benjamin Moore. The trim is Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls. The light “fixture” is original, and they even sell new ones just like it for vintage homes, so we kept it.

The stair landing, before on the left and after on the right. If you look closely you can see the wallpaper had started to pucker and come off the wall in the corner. Also, the walls and the trim had all been painted the same beige color in semi-gloss paint. We removed the wallpaper, which I'll get into in a minute, and painted the walls and trim different colors.

The stair landing, before on the left and after on the right. If you look closely you can see the wallpaper had started to pucker and come off the wall in the corner. Also, the walls and the trim had all been painted the same beige color in semi-gloss paint. We removed the wallpaper, which I'll get into in a minute, and painted the walls and trim different colors.

The upstairs hallway wallpaper was missing in some spots, revealing this kind of original horsehair plaster (which I liked!) or was peeling off. We removed as much as we could, patched, primed, and painted.

The upstairs hallway wallpaper was missing in some spots, revealing this kind of original horsehair plaster (which I liked!) or was peeling off. We removed as much as we could, patched, primed, and painted.

 

An artistic shot of the original horsehair plaster wall.

An artistic shot of the original horsehair plaster wall.

This wall made a great backdrop for my photography.

This wall made a great backdrop for my photography.

This wall made a great backdrop for my photography.

This wall made a great backdrop for my photography.

One night, after a couple of drinks, we started picking at the stairway wall and were excited to see this neat old Titanic era wallpaper. So we continued picking and peeling till it was no longer fun. It stayed in this state for months.

One night, after a couple of drinks, we started picking at the stairway wall and were excited to see this neat old Titanic era wallpaper. So we continued picking and peeling till it was no longer fun. It stayed in this state for months.

Original 1911 wallpaper.

Original 1911 wallpaper.

We had lots of ideas for this wall,. but when we decided to sell the house, we sadly, decided it needed to just be a normal painted wall.

We had lots of ideas for this wall,. but when we decided to sell the house, we sadly, decided it needed to just be a normal painted wall.

We had hoped a skim coat and some paint would do it, but nope. Bruse the drywall guy to the rescue. He got up on his scaffold and removed all the wallpaper for us! Then he let us borrow the scaffolding so Mike could paint.

We had hoped a skim coat and some paint would do it, but nope. Bruce the drywall guy to the rescue. He got up on his scaffold and removed all the wallpaper for us! Then he let us borrow the scaffolding so Mike could paint.

We painted everything, including the trim, and considered it done. It was good that we used the same color that was already there (we even went so far as to use semi-gloss paint on one of the really bad walls) because it matched perfectly.

We painted everything, including the trim, and considered it done. It was good that we used the same color that was already there (we even went so far as to use semi-gloss paint on one of the really bad walls) because it matched perfectly.

Quick and easy living room renovation

We were very lucky when we bought our 1911 Craftsman home in Colorado Springs. The house was a foreclosure so it had some issues. But the people who owned it before us bought it when it really needed a lot of work. They did all the boring, expensive stuff like getting a new roof, furnace, some electrical, refinished the floors, and got the exterior painted. Then I guess both of them lost their jobs, the housing market crashed and they went into foreclosure, leaving us to buy a cheap house that needed pretty much only cosmetic work. We have a lot of mixed feelings about the whole situation, but right here on this post we’re just going to focus on the things we did. I had been following the house for quite awhile, seeing the price keep going down. I knew I’d want to buy it so I didn’t even want to look at it until it was within our price range. Once we did go inside, we were only in there for 5 minutes before we decided to make an offer.

I pretty much knew this was our house when I walked in the front door and saw it.

I pretty much knew this was our house when I walked in the front door.

The house had been used as a hair salon for 40 years! Accirding to our neighbor, the people who owned the house before us discovered this intact fireplace and built in bookcases behind a bank of mirrors.

The house had been used as a hair salon for 40 years! According to our neighbor, the people who owned the house before us discovered this intact fireplace and built in bookcases behind a bank of mirrors.

All this room needed was the usual scraping, sanding, patching, priming, and painting. We used Benjamin Moore Ultra White on the walls and Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls on the trim.

All this room needed was the usual scraping, sanding, patching, priming, and painting. We used Benjamin Moore Ultra White on the walls and Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls on the trim.

These doors had all the original wavy glass.

These doors had all the original wavy glass.

The living room is huge, just slightly smaller than our entire Chicago apartment.

The living room is huge, just slightly smaller than our entire Chicago apartment.

Mike's favorite Morris chair fit in perfectly with the Craftsman style.

Mike's favorite Morris chair fit in perfectly with the Craftsman style.

The floors didn’t need anything except a good scrubbing, and then we were done.

Our sweet little guest room renovation

This room is one of the reasons I wanted to buy this house. It was so charming with those neat windows overlooking the cute Victorian homes on the street. The direct sunlight was also a bonus, and look at the pretty floors.

The guest room the day we looked at the house for the first time.

The guest room the day we looked at the house for the first time.

Pretty windows with a view of Pikes Peak

Pretty windows with a view of Pikes Peak

We had hoped this room would be the “master bedroom” but the king-size bed just barely fit in the space and it really wasn’t going to work. We did end up spending more time sleeping in this room than the real master bedroom during our time here, for various reasons, tho.

One day I started picking at a spot on the wall and uncovered this cool old wallpaper.

One day I started picking at a spot on the wall and uncovered this cool old wallpaper. The beige wallpaper was the first layer and the one with the blue was on top of it. We think the blue was from the 30s or 40s.

This is really old- it's actual paper. I googled the pattern and think it is from when the house was built in 1911.

This is really old- it's actual paper. I googled the pattern and think it is from when the house was built in 1911.

I loved the old wallpaper and we planned on stripping it all off this one wall and doing something kind of artsy with it. But when we decided we needed to sell the house, we just decided to cover it back over and be more generic.

I loved the old wallpaper and we planned on stripping it all off this one wall and doing something kind of artsy with it. But when we decided we needed to sell the house, we just decided to cover it back over and be more generic.

It made a cute guest room. These twon beds could be pushed together to make a king bed, but there isn't much room that way.

It made a cute guest room. These twin beds could be pushed together to make a king bed, but there isn't much room that way.

A little sitting area for guests.

A little sitting area for guests.

This was the last room we painted so we just mixed together all the leftover paint. Since they were all shades of grey and beige, it worked out fine. The trim is Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls.

This was the last room we painted so we just mixed together all the leftover paint. Since they were all shades of grey and beige, it worked out fine. The trim is Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls.

We actually had several guests in the year we spent there, so it was nice to have a place for them.

Spare bedroom: office and dressing room swap and renovation

When we first moved into our 1911 Colorado Springs Craftsman, we used one of the upstairs bedrooms as a dressing room. I have a glamour photography business and like having a dedicated room for the girls to get dressed and their hair and makeup done. But since we were going to sell the house we wanted to have a more mainstream floor plan and that meant using the bedroom we used for a dressing room to be an office instead. Luckily there was a small covered porch off the bedroom that would work perfectly as a little dressing room.

The smallest bedroom was pretty cute as a dressing room.

The smallest bedroom was pretty cute as a dressing room.

But when I didn't have any photo shoots, it became a messy place for random items.

But when I didn't have any photo shoots, it became a messy place for random items.

So we took everything out, patched, painted, stripped the hardware, and changed the outlet covers from off white to white.

So we took everything out, patched, painted, stripped the hardware, and changed the outlet covers from off white to white.

We used Benjamin Moore Old Prairie for the walls and Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls on the trim.

We used Benjamin Moore Old Prairie for the walls and Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls on the trim.

The view from the new office room.

The view from the new office room.

The office "after".

The office "after".

Lots of houses in Colorado Springs have small covered porches off the largest bedroom. They were for TB patients who came to Colorado Springs seeking “the cure” which consisted of, among other things, lots of fresh air. Some of the porches were open at first and covered later. Some were always covered but with lots of windows, which we think was the case with ours.

The small covered porch off the bedroom would make a nice dressing room.

The small covered porch off the bedroom would make a nice dressing room.

The small covered porch needed a lot of work before it could be used as a dressing room.

The small covered porch needed a lot of work before it could be used as a dressing room.

We nicknamed this the "door to nowhere" and had some trouble getting financing because of it. It originally went out to an uncovered porch- our neighbor's is still intact.

We nicknamed this the "door to nowhere" and had some trouble getting financing because of it. It originally went out to an uncovered porch- our neighbor's is still intact. Some drywall solved the problem.

It was also really cold in there in the winter, so we did our best to close up all the gaps and holes. Mike got to use his favorite thing, spray foam, for this task.

It was also really cold in there in the winter, so we did our best to close up all the gaps and holes. Mike got to use his favorite thing, spray foam, for this task.

This was the only light in the room, and it had no electrical outlets, so we got an adapter for the fixture that had a couple of outlets on it. You have to have the light turned on to use the outlets, but since I only really needed the outlet for a hair dryer, it wasn’t that big of a deal.

And paint. It needed a LOT of paint.

And paint. It needed a LOT of paint.

It took days to prep, prime, patch, paint and caulk this room.

It took days to prep, prime, patch, paint and caulk this room.

I loved the original red floor, but it needed to be repainted and we didn't want to spend any more money, so we just did it in the white (Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls). I was planning to use a rug anyway, which covered most of the floor.

I loved the original red floor, but it needed to be repainted and we didn't want to spend any more money, so we just did it in the white (Benjamin Moore Cotton Balls). I was planning to use a rug anyway, which covered most of the floor.

I cut up the pink curtains from the other room and used them in here.

Covered porch dressing room "after".

Covered porch dressing room "after".

Dressing room "after".

Dressing room "after".