* I was going to subtitle this post “in under an hour, for under $10!” but I’m not a normal person so I ended up spending a bit more time and a teeny bit more money than that. YOU could certainly do this transformation in under an hour and for under $10! See the breakdown at the end of the post.
There are a few spots in my house that fill me with dread. It seems no matter what I do to spruce them up, they come back to haunt me. One example of this is my huge brick fireplace and mantle. You’ll meet that dreadful space in due time, but until then here’s area-that-fills-me-with-dread #2: my dining room.
Quick history: when we bought the house, the dining room was actually a game room. They had a pool table in there, and the walls were covered with– wait for it– BASEBALL CARD WALLPAPER. This is the first room you see when you walk in the front door. I’m all for meeting the needs of the homeowner, but needless to say that stuff had to GO.
Fast forward a few years, and I’ve done what I can with the room but I’m still not satisfied. The room is dark and dated. I do love the rug:
and the antique china corner cabinet from my husband’s grandmother:
… but the color palette I originally chose is too dark for the space. See what I mean?
I decided to tackle the room because it was depressing me. After some simple and inexpensive changes, here’s what happened!
Window Blinds: The blinds had dark green fabric strips on them to match the baseball wallpaper that used to cover this room. It stuck out like a sore thumb, and certainly didn’t match the current color palette. I took a risk and used Fabri-Tac glue to attach cream-colored ribbon to the front. Instantly the green disappeared and the cream blended in. NO MORE EYE SORE!
Curtains: I searched everywhere for curtains to match this room. I finally settled on dark brown velvet panels. They became a black hole of sorts, not adding much to the room and sucking the light out of it. I couldn’t find an alternative, so I kept them. For this make-over, I remembered a pair of IKEA panels I had in the basement that couldn’t be returned. I spent some time ironing them and voila! Let there be light!
Flowers: We have an apple tree in our yard making for some cheap-o blooms. I popped them into IKEA glasses I had on hand filled with river rock, and placed them in our window and on the table. Forsythia from our side yard became a centerpiece for the bookcase, and when those fade I have some willow branches to place inside.
Tablecloth: Like the curtains, I couldn’t find the right tablecloth for this room. I’ve been searching years. On the way back from Hershey, I found this beautiful fabric at a discount fabric outlet and I HAD to use it for the table! The problem? I’d purchased 2 yards, which was about 1 foot too short of what I needed. Thankfully I had some cream corduroy fabric, so I sewed that on the ends. I’m in love.
Table Runner: I shopped the house for the yellow runner, added some apple blossoms, and then placed some lemons down the center.
Drink Cart: By the way, this cart began life as a brass cart I found for $3 at the thrift store. Black spray paint, a good cleaning, and it has new life in our dining room! I added lemons to another thrift store find (the capri dot bowl, $1) and it freshened things up.
Window Blinds: $9 for supplies, and 30 minutes to attach
Flowers: FREE from the yard
Table Cloth: $20 for fabric, and 2 hours to cut/pin/sew it
Centerpiece: $4 for the lemons (can I call it FREE, though, since I’ve now used them all?)
Curtains: FREE, and 20 minutes to iron them with 10 minutes to hang them
As for the lemons, I’m not sure I can count them in the budget breakdown because most are already gone. What did I do with them? Make Lemonade, of course!
Linking this to:
Metamorphosis Monday at Between Naps on the Porch