ORC Reveal – Dining Room Part Deux

ORC Reveal – Dining Room Part Deux

Welcome to everyone’s favorite kind of post – One Room Challenge Dining Room Reveal Time. I’ve been struggling a bit this round of the One Room Challenge rollercoaster. This is my third time and my first round since I have become a homeowner again.

The last two times I participated were in a house we rented (if you have never seen those rooms check out my first dining room and master bedroom). It was almost easier to commit to design ideas in that space because it felt temporary. So if I didn’t like the space in a year it didn’t matter since I would be moving anyway-right?!?!

For some reason this round of the challenge I felt like I could not get my bearings. I was a little fearful of committing to the space because I knew the design had to last longer than my last two rounds. The other part had to do with balancing a demanding day job with family responsibilities. I could find the time to do the physical labor…but couldn’t seem to keep up with the blog posts, Instagram posts and all the other parts that make the challenge so fun and engaging. Every time I would carve out a few hours to edit pictures and write I would have total writers block…and then it felt inauthentic like I was forcing words out of my brain. So I apologize if those last posts weren’t as good as they could have been.

Despite it all I finished the space…and am happy to report that I really love it. Beyond that it has become one of the most functional spaces in our small but mighty home. I’m thankful for the deadline the ORC provided, because we all know I’d still have pantry shelving in my dining room if it wasn’t for that. Just a friendly reminder…

Dining Room in the Glory Days

Dining Room Before

Let me show you a few other pictures of where we started. These were taken the day we were given the keys. I honestly walked in an thought…”Did we make a mistake?!?”

Happily that was just a moment of pure fear before we embarked on a “mini” renovation to make the house feel more like a home of our own. So without further ado here is my OneRoomChallenge Dining Room Makeover!

Dining Room After

Modern Dining Room
View from Family Room
Dining Room Reveal, Modern Dining Room
Looking towards Backyard
Dining Room Reveal, Modern Dining Room
Looking Towards Kitchen

Big Impact Changes in the Dining Room

So let’s talk about what we did in here to give the room a more cohesive feel.

  • First I modified our old blue banquette by cutting down the back and reupholstering in a Perennials fabric that is proving to be bullet proof. It cleans up so easily you almost have to see it in person to believe it. I debated about the fabric swatch for weeks and I’m really happy I went with this more neutral textural choice. Then I painted the white banquette the same Benjamin Moore Shale that we painted the kitchen with. That way the banquette felt like it was an extension of the kitchen not a weird add on. (Bonus that this was leftover paint from our renovation a few months ago).
DIY Furniture, Dining Room Banquette
DIY Dining Room Seating Bench. Pillows by Relative Renovations
  • Next on the list I added some faux Roman Shades to disguise the black roller screens the previous owner installed. The screens were functional but felt really bare with the vaulted ceilings. I had picked up these Belgian linen window panels six months ago at an outlet. All I had to do was buy a few tension rods and use an extensive amount of iron on tape to make these beautiful little window coverings.
  • Looking Down on the windowsill you can see the new wood casing. I used a piece of red oak that was easy to find at Lowe’s to give the window a more finished look. I figure it is a good spot for a drink and also ties the window to the other oak items used in the space. Ashley came through in the eleventh hour and made us a few new pillow covers too!
  • Adding a new large scale light fixture to the space was like adding a piece of art. This light fixture was the perfect choice to fill the volume of the vaulted ceilings without feeling too heavy. I’m really in love with it and so happy to have a light in this corner again!
Modern Light fixture, scandanavian chairs, fiddle leaf fig.

Small Dining Room Changes

These were the little things that really helped give the space life. All too often I skip these detail because of time and money, but what I have found is that they really give the space life and make it feel like our home!

  • Plants, testing out a new Fiddle Leaf Fig andI love that new little black and white pot.
House plants, Fiddle leaf Fig, Monserata
  • ART! We bought this painting for ourselves on our fifth anniversary and it is one of the few pieces I have been missing. (When we moved in I left all of our art in storage to see what pieces I really missed- this is one of the first to make it out).
Modern Dining room, banquette, modern chandelier.
  • DIY Elements. I have been thinking about making this butcher block roll for over a year. I am glad I was finally able to think it through and DIY this for our dining space. Tutorial coming soon on this one. The kids and I are enjoying already writing out family dinner menus. I’m hoping it will also serve as inspiration to add impromptu art to the house!

Well Friends, I hope you enjoyed the reveal. Six weeks of thinking, mulling over decisions and DIY-ing marks the end of another successful OneRoomChallenege. I hope you enjoyed watching the transformation. Let me know what you think!

Make sure to also check out the other talented designers who participated in this round of the challenge, link here. I can’t forget about my talented partner Ashley who has participated in the past by renovating a full kitchen and master bedroom! Have fun reading and pinning away!


ORC Week 4 – Dining Room Part Deux

ORC Week 4 – Dining Room Part Deux

I believe we left off the last few weeks of the OneRoomChallenge write ups with me promising that I would make progress on my Dining Room refresh. As each week has creeped along I was getting more and more concerned we weren’t going to get it all finished. Well my friends…the day has finally arrived and I have some progress to share! Cue the happy dance!

If you are just jumping on and wondering what I am talking about you can check out my posts the the last few weeks ( 1, 2and 3)… although if I am being honest just skip weeks 2 and 3 as we didn’t really progress as far as I would have liked.

This past weekend my husband was in town and we had one child staying with Grandma for a sleepover. Saturday was go day and we started out by a 2 hour trip to Lowe’s where we bought every piece of hardware imaginable to convert our light fixture mounting plate into a install plate that can accommodate a sloped ceiling.

Dining Room Sloped Ceiling Fixture Adjustment:

All the Parts we tried to convert our light fixture

After tinkering with all the pieces, we found that the winning combination was slipping the vertical drop of our light fixture through a ceiling fan sloped ceiling adaptor part. The mounting piece has a fair amount of extra room within it to hide our fixture mounting plate. The swivel ball at the bottom perfectly allowed our 1/2″ rod to slip through. Half way through the day we solved part one of our light problem. If you find yourself in a similar sloped ceiling conundrum you can buy this adaptor here, just be prepared for a little fenagling.

Step 2 – Dining Room Light J Box Relocation

Next on the agenda was for my husband to climb through our attic space and relocate the junction box above our new dining nook area. The original owners took their light fixture with them so we have had no light in this corner for months. Plus, their dining space was centered in a weird spot that really blocked the flow of traffic. My husband put on his Tyvek suit and disappeared into the attic. This was probably my least favorite part of our process since I felt so helpless downstairs while he struggled in a tiny crawl space to create this new box.

Tyvek suit, Attic work
Andy climbing into the attic – his team was concerned
Attic space work.
There he is way in the back over the kitchen space

I’ll spare you the details, but this was by far the most time consuming and messy part of the job. He had to cut a new hole in the ceiling and run wires from the old junction box to the new one.

Step 3 – Upholster Banquette Back Cushion

While he risked his life climbing through the attic I focused on upholstering the new back cushion for our banquette. I have a tutorial coming on this one. It’s an easy method that involves limited skill and a few tools.

Once Andy came down from the attic we worked together to actually hang our new light fixture… which involved all four of our hands (so no picture documentation). Let me tell you – this moment was worth the wait – BAM!

Step 4 – Reveal Dining Room Light Fixture!!!

We have a gorgeous dining room Light!!!!

Dining Room nook, light fixture, bubble pendant. Homemade banquette. Fiddle Leaf Fig.

Everything felt so simple and perfect once the light and banquette back cushion was installed. I’ve spent all week thinking about how much I love the simplicity of the space. Which has me seriously questioning my original art, decorative pillow and window covering plans.

Dining room nook, tulip table, bubble pendant

I fight this internal tendency to over decorate. So the next two weeks I am going to push to really edit what goes in here.

Stay tuned for more to come. I hope you are as happy as I am to see progress! Make sure to also check in with others on their oneroomchallenge journey here. There is so much creative action going on!


ORC Week 3 – Dining Room Part Deux

ORC Week 3 – Dining Room Part Deux

Here I am, about half way through the One Room Challenge wishing that I had made further progress. I’ve been happily following along with those guest participants who are knocking it out of the park, check some of them out here.

When I signed up for this challenge I knew I needed some strict deadlines and camaraderie to help encourage me towards the finish line. As I hoped, other guest participants have been messaging me on Instagram and cheering me along. I knew that the first few weeks would be the most difficult since my partner in crime (insert husband) was traveling for work and unable to help me with most project related things. Hopefully when I report back next week we will have some real news to share.

In the meantime I have been majorly struggling with what piece of art I want here. Initially we had considered a wall mural…then I coordinated with an artist regarding a custom wall paper. It looks like that isn’t going to work out and so I was back on the hunt… I am feeling particularly inspired by this piece of art:

Artist Unknown

So we will see how that pans out. I kind of want to see the light fixture in place before I commit to the size and type of art.

I worked on the banquette cushions a little more this week, adding piano hinges and backing to my seat cushions. My hope was the hinges would allow the kids to easily lift them up for storage….but I unfortunately mis calculated the thickness of the cushion and back of the bench and they won’t open… so back to square one on that.

Despite my mishaps this week I felt pretty great about how the space was shaping up. We entertained a few people a couple of days this week…and no fail everyone congregated to the dining nook. It felt really great seeing this space serve a better purpose and seeing everyone enjoy sitting around the table. It made me feel like I was on the right track.

I’m gonna wrap this up for the week and promise you I have big things for next week 😉


ORC Fall 2019 Week 2 – Dining Room Part Deux

ORC Fall 2019 Week 2 – Dining Room Part Deux

Already into Week 2 of the one room challenge…sadly I don’t have a ton to share. This week was filled with planning, organizing, finding tools, etc. If you are just catching up we revealed working on our dining room in this Week 1 review here.

Modifying the Banquette

We started the week off with the big blue banquette in the dining room, which I would have used “as is” had the height of the backrest not completely blocked the window (shown below). When I moved it into this spot I wasn’t sure it was going to be a permanent fixture…but it quickly became my kids favorite spot for meals and playing legos. I forgot how functional a big cushy bench would be at the tulip table. This determined my resolve to keep the seat portion and modify the backrest to fit in this new space. Plus by keeping it I saved hundred of dollars, which was a win win.

Dining Room Modifications

First things first, I pulled out my tools and went to town cutting the backrest down. Then I lowered the top portion so that it was mid back height. Perfectly located to rest the top of one’s arm. Even with the food and crap on the table you can see its so much better already!

Dining Room

Recovering Cushions

Next up on the agenda for the week was recovering the seat cushions with my new Perennials fabric. I chose a beautiful taupe/cream chenille like swatch. If you have been following on Instagram you probably saw me rub beet juice all over these sample pieces of fabric. This stuff is amazing and pretty much cleans up with a sponge and soap. There was no way I would use a light fabric on a seat cushion that is exposed to non stop messes unless it had been hardcore tested. When the beet stains wiped right out I knew it passed the test for our family. Plus I love the monochromatic feel of the fabric against the marble and new banquette color.

Cushion Recovering

Speaking of colors…I had a long running debate about painting the base of the banquette a dark green, dark blue or black. The white was not holding up to everyone’s dirty feet :/ Out to my garage I went to sort through buckets of leftover paint samples. I stumbled across the BM Gray we used throughout the kitchen and baseboards. Since the kitchen is right next to this area I loved the idea of building the banquette into the wall and having it feel seamless. So an idea was hatched and I went ahead and painted the banquette to see how I liked it:

Dining Room Banquette

It complimented the floors, chairs and dinner table…from a distance the fabric almost looks like an exact match to the paint color. So I decided to keep it and am moving forward with the monochromatic color scheme.

Moving Into Week 3

Typically I have a more concrete design plan in front of me as I work on spaces (I.e. a moodboard or materials selected). This time around I have some loose ideas that have been bouncing around in my head for some time and a lot of leftover design items and construction materials that need to be used. So I am trying to be creative and use what I have. After out last move I realized how much “stuff” we have accumulated and/or not used throughout four major renovations. I’m hoping to clear some of these things out and put them to good use.

So that was my week – not counting a normal job, solo parenting and a family member having a hospital stay… Even thought I didn’t make the progress I had hoped I am trying to focus on the positive things I did.

Hopefully week 3 will be a little less hectic and I can get a lot done and write a better blogpost than this one! Some weeks it is so hard to keep up with progress posts – between the design plans, ordering, DIY, the actual job that pays the bills, feeding children and all the other life commitments it zaps ones writing creativity. Are you other DIY bloggers feeling me on this one?!?! How do you make the time, give me answers?

Hopefully you are following along with others, who actually write good posts, over at the ORC link up page. There are so many great projects to follow this round, I’ve been enjoying picking a few faves to keep an eye on.

See you next week friends!