Before and After One Room Challenge The Scenery House

One Room Challenge Week 6: Master Bedroom Reveal!

November 7, 2018

Master bedroom with fireplace

It’s a wrap! I successfully finished our One Room Challenge master bedroom makeover JUST in time for today’s reveal. If you’re not familiar, every spring and fall, 20 featured designers selected by the ORC team participate in a 6-week challenge to decorate one room. The event is hosted by Linda Weinstein of Calling it Home and Better Homes and Gardens. In addition to the featured designers, hundreds of other folks with blogs (and Instagram this season!) join in on the challenge as Guest Participants <— that’s me.

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is my second One Room Challenge (last season I made over our guest room). I am glad you’re here!

If you’d like to travel back in time and see each week’s progress:

Week 1: The Master Bedroom Plan

Week 2: The Fireplace Plan

Week 3: Curtains + Rugs

Week 4: Gallery Grid

Week 5: The Last Details

These last 6 weeks flew by and I am so happy with how much we accomplished. I can’t stop smiling at the fireplace I built with my dad – it’s the focal point in our the bedroom and I love it. And upgrading to the most beautiful king size white oak bed has been amazing. Ok, let’s take a quick look at where we started and then I promise we’ll get to the good stuff!

The Master Bedroom Before

White wall master bedroom mid century

6 weeks ago our bedroom was cute but under-furnished. We had a queen size bed paired with mismatched lamps and nightstands and art hung just a little too high. The fluffy shag rug was great underfoot but not easy to keep clean. Our Dyson had trouble handling it and our new Roomba, Clementine, wouldn’t even try it.

The room had already come a long way from what it looked like in the listing photos and from when we moved in. We had the floors refinished, removed a chair rail, and painted the walls Benjamin Moore’s Simply White in matte. Our master bedroom was also much improved by switching out a frilly chandelier for the Cedar & Moss Conifer Flush Mount from Rejuvenation.

dark shag rug white walls mid century dresser

This was the view looking into the room. I had a small 3 drawer mid century dresser that I still love and haven’t been able to part with. The dresser and mirror combo is nice and all but I couldn’t help but wonder, what if it was a fireplace instead?

The New Modern Traditional Master Bedroom

Modern traditional bedroom with fireplace

This view! I love it so much. I’ve always dreamed of having a fireplace in my bedroom so my big project this season was building one! I designed a fireplace surround that was a modern nod to the craftsman and Tudor style of our home. My dad and I spent about half the challenge building the fireplace on weekends (plus some weekdays my dad gave up to work on this solo because he’s the best). I picked a pale blue irregular tile with a crackle finish that mimics the original tile in our blush bathroom. The fireplace is painted the same color as the walls, Benjamin Moore’s Simply White, in a satin finish rather than matte.

I added a midcentury chair from our living room and small drink table to create the perfect spot to enjoy a cup of coffee while basking in the heat of the fireplace.

Modern traditional mantel styling

I originally planned on adding art above the fireplace but at the last minute asked Andy to lean this arched mirror on the mantel instead. I picked it up at a thrift store almost 10 years ago and it used to hang in the entryway of our apartment. You may recognize it from my Pinterest-popular SVALBO hack. I styled the mantel with my favorite gray vase from Pittsburgh-based ceramicist Bombabird along with a vintage brass vase, a candle holder from CB2, and a vase and tray from Target. I clipped a branch from a tree in our yard and popped it into a vase to add the perfect touch of greenery.

Electric fireplace insert gif

For the electric fireplace insert, I chose a 23″ insert from Dimplex. It acts as a space heater with the added ambiance of a fire. I can control the temperature and the robustness of the flames via remote control. I like that I can choose to just have the flames on without the heat for warmer months.

If you are thinking about adding an electric fireplace to your home, I have a few pieces of info for you that I learned during this process. Electric inserts like these can be directly wired or plugged into an outlet. Essentially, electric fireplaces are just fancy space heaters and space heaters like this should be on their own dedicated circuit for safety. If you have an older home like ours, you may not have grounded, 3-prong outlets and that’s also a problem. We are addressing these issues with an electrician and won’t be using the fireplace for heat until we have a safer electrical solution in place.

Rejuvenation perkins spindle bed

Just like in our guest bedroom, our master bedroom works best with a layout that places the bed under/in front of the windows. The trick for placing a bed in front of a window and having it look intentional is picking the right bed or headboard. A piece that lets the light shine through (think spindles in wood or metal or a woven rattan headboard) will complement the windows. Alternately, you can choose a low bed or headboard that hits just under the window or at the same height as the window sill. I have wanted the Perkins Spindle Bed from Rejuvenation since I first saw it in Emily Henderson’s bedroom reveal. I chose the white oak because I wanted to add lightness and contrast between wood tones and in this room.

A new king-size bed means a new mattress and there are so many mattress-in-a-box companies to choose from! We picked the Leesa Sapira mattress because I like anything that’s described as luxury. We are really liking it! The bed is dressed in my favorite Target sheets, Dobby Ladder Stripe Duvet Cover, Belgian Linen Quilt, and oatmeal check lumbar pillow from Juniper Studio.

For our new and improved bedroom, I originally wanted 2 rugs for the two “zones” in the room – the bed area and the fireplace area. A few kind internet friends asked me – hey – why not just 1 rug? And then I asked everyone to weigh in on stories and the answer was “please, just 1 rug!” So I set to searching the internet high and low for the right giant rug. It wasn’t easy but I found a great vintage overdyed rug at my favorite traditional rug source, eCarpetGallery.

Crate and barrel keane nightstand

Euro pleat curtains

I still can’t believe we have matching nightstands. For the first time. Our guestroom got a set of matching nightstands in last season’s challenge and now I’m hooked. I’m also hooked on furniture with secret electricity. These nightstands from Crate and Barrel have outlets and USB ports hidden inside a drawer. Technology!

Just like last season, I gave IKEA curtains a major makeover just by adding a good pleat. I removed the tabs and sewed a Euro Pleat into basic LENDA curtains to give them a tailored, modern traditional look. They took forever but they were so worth it.

For the curtain rods, I chose Pottery Barn’s PB Standard Drape Rods in the .75″ diameter with an antique bronze finish. The finish is nearly black and the brackets have a nice curved shape that echoes the casement fasteners on our windows. If you choose these rods for your home, know that you’ll have to purchase the finials separately, I picked the simple Endcap option. To save some cash where I could, I ordered these curtain rings in black from Amazon which matched the antique bronze finish extremely well. I ended up removing the clips (but keeping the wire hooks) from the rings and attaching them to the curtains using pin-on drapery hooks.

Crate and Barrel Keane Nightstands

Finding the right lamps was another challenge for me. Andy doesn’t like reaching inside a lampshade to turn it on because that’s where spiders live. I wanted something large that was the right scale for the large nightstands and big king bed. It was a challenge to find lampshades that weren’t too bright white or weren’t too close to the color of the curtains. I ended up finding these Roar + Rabbit lamps at our local West Elm just in time and am so happy with them. They have a crackle glaze that nods to the crackle finish on the fireplace tile AND a little dangle pull that means secret spiders are out of luck.

Grid Gallery Wall

We added a grid gallery to the long wall beside our bed using black and white prints of our travel photos and frames from Amazon. We had the oversized mats custom cut to add extra breathing room around the prints. It can be hard to figure out what to do with a big blank wall like this but a tidy, monochromatic grid can make a big impact.

Kent Coffey Tableau Mid Century Dresser

We are still shopping for a new dresser for Andy (we love this mid-century piece by Kent Coffey but are looking for something with larger drawers) but gave this side of the room a little bit of a spruce up. I put together a quick and easy DIY art project by sketching out art on my iPad, having it printed at FedEx Office, and popping it into an IKEA frame from our dining room. Sorry, dining room.

Mid Century Dresser Abstract Art

The lamp is from CB2 from a few years ago and the vases are both from Target. The blush necklace on the wall is from Sasha.

Abstract Art Mid Century Dresser Vignette

The small pink vase is from Bombabird and the taller spotted vase is from Studio Arhoj. I borrowed the blanket ladder from our guest bedroom and hung some of my favorite ceramic knot necklaces on it from Oatmeal.

I am so in love with our new master bedroom. While we didn’t make huge changes with the wall color or layout, we now have a room that is much cozier. Our bedroom felt large and empty before but now feels comfortably furnished. I’m so glad I was also able to bring in some of my favorite vintage accessories to round out the space and add age to the room.

Remember to check out the Featured Designer reveals as well as the Guest Participants reveals!

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

Hey heads up: This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

One Room Challenge

One Room Challenge Week 5: The Last Details

October 31, 2018

[ photo by Andy Cosnotti ]

I don’t have a pretty room picture or even an in-progress picture to share with you this week so you just get this picture of me smiling at wood glue.

It’s week 5! There’s only 1 week left of the Fall 2018 One Room Challenge! If you’re not familiar, every spring and fall, 20 featured designers selected by the ORC team participate in a 6-week challenge to decorate one room. The event is hosted by Linda Weinstein of Calling it Home and Better Homes and Gardens. In addition to the featured designers, hundreds of other folks with blogs (and Instagram this season!) join in on the challenge as Guest Participants <— that’s me.

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is my second One Room Challenge (last season I made over our guest room). I am glad you’re here!

This week and the coming week are all about wrapping up loose ends, finalizing the last details, and making sure things are as finished as is reasonably and humanly possible in time to photograph the room for the reveal. This is the time where I make compromises and usually, a bit of zen falls over me as I realize what is really important and what is not.

So what have I been up to?

I spent the weekend working on the fireplace with my dad. I think my favorite part of this challenge is finding an excuse to spend a lot of time building things with him.

[ photo by Andy Cosnotti ]

We’ve been putting the surround together over the last couple of weekends. It’s really starting to take shape and I can’t wait to see it in place in our master bedroom. To get a head start, I started priming it as soon as we were able to sand it. See me above, tiny paint roller in hand, definitely wearing pajamas and laughing at one of my own jokes.

[ photo by Andy Cosnotti ]

My nail gun skills are questionable which explains the face I’m making. But look at that beautiful arch going in! I love it. We set the tile, but still need to apply the grout. And once that’s all done, the fireplace surround has to make a 2-hour journey from my parents’ house to our house in Pittsburgh.

But there’s more! Because finishing up the fireplace, making a lot of important last decisions, decorating, and photographing the full reveal wasn’t enough, I’ve also got a quick DIY art project rolling around in my brain. So we’ll see about that.

If You’re Prepping for Your Reveal or Just Want Some Styling Tips…

Last season I wrote up some tips on How to Style Textiles Like a Pro that also includes some great photo tips on getting the best photos of your finished room for your reveal.

And remember, do what you can but don’t stress yourself out too much (I’m saying this to me just as much as you!) You’re gonna do great.

Still to-do

  • Finish and install the fireplace
  • Put furniture in place
  • Lamps
  • Finish sewing curtains and hang them
  • Art for above the fireplace
  • Selling/hoarding existing bedroom furniture
  • Decorations and last touches
  • Photograph the reveal

To catch up on the previous weeks’ updates:

Week 1: The Master Bedroom Plan

Week 2: The Fireplace Plan

Week 3: Curtains + Rugs

Week 4: Gallery Grid

Remember to follow along and see what the Featured Designers and Guest Participants are up to!

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

DIY One Room Challenge

The One Room Challenge Week 4: Gallery Grid

October 24, 2018

Master Bedroom Budget Gallery Grid

Holy crap it’s week 4. Week 4 of the Fall 2018 One Room Challenge that is! If you’re not familiar, every spring and fall, 20 featured designers selected by the ORC team participate in a 6-week challenge to decorate one room. The event is hosted by Linda Weinstein of Calling it Home and Better Homes and Gardens. In addition to the featured designers, hundreds of other folks with blogs (and Instagram this season!) join in on the challenge as Guest Participants <— that’s me.

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is my second One Room Challenge (last season I made over our guest room). I am glad you’re here!

We’ve got this big blank wall in our bedroom that we’ve never done anything with. You may remember it from my One Room Challenge Week 1 Master Bedroom Plan. I tackled a big blank wall in our guest bedroom for last season’s ORC by DIYing abstract art and building custom canvas frames but this season, we’re showcasing our photographs in a grid wall.

How to Make a Budget-Friendly Gallery Grid

Budget Thin Frame Chunky Mat Gallery Grid

Sources and Supplies

  • Frames – $29.99 each
  • Mats – $8.95 each (with shipping)
  • Prints – $5.00 (with express shipping)

Each frame cost us $43.95 with all 8 together totaling at $351.52. That seems like a huge number but for art that takes up an entire wall, that’s not bad. And you can always get cheaper frames with coupons at Michaels or Jo Anns.

For our gallery grid, I wanted a custom look without the custom framing price. Custom framing is totally worth it (Framebridge is great and even has Gallery Walls), but I needed a quick project with a very short lead time. I found 16×20″ thin metal black frames on Amazon and ordered 8 of them. I wanted a chunkier mat to give the prints more breathing room so I quickly customized mats from MatboardandMore.com. I chose the Arctic White mat color with a white core with the 4ply thickness. I decided to center my photos in the frame but you can totally do a bottom weighted mat where there’s more mat space below the print than above it. Then I played around with print sizes and landed on 8×10″, setting the mat window size at 7.5×9.5″. When you’re choosing your mat window, make sure your window is smaller than your print size so you have room to tape it in.

My husband, Andy is a skilled nature photographer and has seen the prettiest mountains and trees and sights this country has to offer. This means we have access to an impressive library of beautiful photographs ready at a moment’s notice – perfect for this project! We took a family trip to Yosemite in September and I snapped a few photos too as proof that I was a good sport and went outside. We selected 4 of Andy’s photos and 4 of mine for this black and white gallery grid and had them printed by Mpix on their True Black and White Paper.

How to Hang a Gallery Grid

Of course, I planned this in SketchUp because I can’t make a decision without it. Putting the frames in my SketchUp plan helped me decide on the size of the frames I needed, the number, the spacing, and where to hang everything.

How to plan a gallery grid with painters tape

My plans put the center of the grid at 57″ high centered horizontally on the wall with the frames spaced 2 inches apart. Andy used painters tape to help perfect the spacing and placement.

Master Bedroom Budget Gallery Grid

Budget Gallery Grid DIY

Black and White Prints in Budget Gallery Grid

I am so happy with how the grid turned out!

So where are we on that big ol’ list of to-dos?

Things that are done:

  • Gallery grid is finished
  • Curtain rods are up
  • A mattress has been ordered!
  • Fireplace tile has been ordered
  • Fireplace building has begun!
  • Bedding

The still-to-do list:

  • Rug(s)!
  • Lamps
  • Hem + pleat curtains
  • Other art?
  • New dresser
  • Selling/hoarding existing bedroom furniture
  • End of bed bench?

If you’d like to catch up on the previous weeks’ updates:

Week 1: The Master Bedroom Plan

Week 2: The Fireplace Plan

Week 3: Curtains + Rugs

Remember to follow along and see what the Featured Designers and Guest Participants are up to!

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

Hey heads up: This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

Interiors Inspiration One Room Challenge

One Room Challenge Week 3: Curtains + Rugs

October 17, 2018

Large nightstand, modern mushroom lamp

[ nightstand | lamp ]

Welcome to week 3 of the Fall 2018 One Room Challenge! If you’re not familiar, every spring and fall, 20 featured designers selected by the ORC team participate in a 6-week challenge to decorate one room. The event is hosted by Linda Weinstein of Calling it Home and Better Homes and Gardens. In addition to the featured designers, hundreds of other folks with blogs (and Instagram this season!) join in on the challenge as Guest Participants <— that’s me.

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is my second One Room Challenge (last season I made over our guest room). I am glad you’re here!

Week 3 is a weird week where some things have been ordered, others have not, many decisions have been made, yet others have not. I’m trying to think through each decision, to share with you what I learn along the way, and that’s just what this week’s update is: an exercise in overthinking in curtain and rug form.

I can’t remember just when it happened, but I’ve fallen in love with a certain kind of curtain. I was seeing these beautifully styled curtains, deeply compressed, tidy but just slightly untidy. And then I found myself scrolling through Pinterest, seeing those perfect curtains and holding my laptop mere inches from my face saying out loud “what is that pleat?!”

Euro Pleat Curtain Inspiration

Emily Henderson Living Room Euro Pleat Curtain Inspiration

[ source: Style by Emily Henderson ]

Amber Interiors Euro Pleat Curtains

[ source: Amber Interiors ]

Amber Interiors Living Room Euro Pleat Curtains

[ source: Amber Interiors ]

Tailored but lived-in. Modern but traditional. Just a dang dream.

That perfect pleat is called a Euro Pleat or Top Tack. And it is being underserved in the DIY internet. If you google DIY euro pleat you’re going to be bummed when you find a youtube video titled “how we create euro pleat drapes” and where you’ll just find a poorly edited, eternally long video of a woman pointing at euro pleats but never telling you how they’re made.

How to DIY a Euro Pleat

I know a lot of what I’m seeing are custom panels. I’ve splurged on the furniture in my room and don’t have room in my budget for custom curtains so I’m DIYing this. My plan is to double up on regular panels so I can get that rich volume and add that sweet euro pleat held up by curtain rings with clips. Magic. The best resource I found is a helpful PDF from Rowley Company on how to sew Euro Pleat Drapes. It has detailed info on how to create two and three finger euro pleats and helped me get a close visual on exactly how the pleats are … pleated. Plus, now I know exactly how much fabric should comprise my pleats (about 6 inches) and how much space there should be between pleats (about 4 inches.)

IKEA LENDA curtains light beige

For my curtains, I’m using curtain panels from IKEA – my favorite budget source for long curtains. I grabbed the LENDA panels in light beige (I pronounce LENDA in my head like someone yelling LIIIIIINNNHDDAH!) which are also a favorite of Young House Love who recently wrote about making cheap curtains look more polished. They are so affordable at $24.99 for a set of 2 but just need some help to look polished. They are improved ten-fold by removal of the top tabs and a proper hemming. Pleating will remove a lot of the width of the curtains so I’ll be doubling up – there will be 2 panels on each side of each window, sewn together to make one wide panel. And if that’s not enough, I’ll add more until the curtain rods fall out of the walls.

Let’s Talk About Rug(s)

The clock is ticking on a rug decision. My hangup has been choosing the right number of rugs in the right sizes. Do we go for one rug or two? And what size? Is it ok to have a rug that is narrower than the total footprint of the bed+nightstands?

I was pretty set on doing a 2 rug layout in my initial plan, but a very nice commenter said, hey, why not 1 big rug? And at first, I thought, “impossible!” I didn’t want to cover the original footprint of the fireplace and I didn’t think I’d be able to find a rug in the right giant size. But I’ve realized that the footprint doesn’t matter, it’s flush with the rest of the floor and finished the same, so if a rug overlaps it, who cares? And heck, big rugs exist. I think?

Long Large Bedroom Rug Layouts

I’ve been thinking this through in the best way I know how: messing with my SketchUp layouts. The big pink rectangles are rug placeholders.

Option 1 solves some my anxiety around having the nightstands grounded by a rug, but it is a tight fit. The 9′ x 12′ rug just hits the edges of ends of the nightstands. The 2 rugs in this plan help to create different zones (a sleeping zone and a dressing/staring into the fire alone zone) and lets me properly ground the big furniture elements, but seems choppy.

Option 2 means that the width of the rug doesn’t extend to match the edges of the nightstands AND means that they don’t stand on the rug at all. The dresser lands mostly on a rug but not entirely. Despite these drawbacks, I think it seems like the better solution. Finding the right 11′ x 14′ rug that costs less than a car is going to be its own challenge.

Which option do you prefer? Would the ungrounded nightstands drive you nuts? Would the 2 rug situation make you itchy?

Things that are done:

  • Nightstands are here
  • Bed is in transit
  • Curtains are here
  • Curtain rods + rings are here
  • Electric fireplace has arrived
  • Fireplace surround plans have been tidied up
  • DIY gallery grid frames and mats have been ordered

The still-to-do list:

  • Rug(s)!
  • Mattress
  • Bedding
  • Lamps
  • Hem + pleat curtains
  • Hang curtain rods
  • Photo prints for gallery grid
  • Tile decision + order
  • Begin work on fireplace surround (eek)
  • Other art?
  • New dresser
  • Selling/hoarding existing bedroom furniture
  • End of bed bench?

If you’d like to catch up on the previous weeks’ updates, check out:

Week 1: The Master Bedroom Plan

Week 2: The Fireplace Plan

Remember to follow along and see what the Featured Designers and Guest Participants are up to!

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

 

Interiors Inspiration One Room Challenge

One Room Challenge Week 2: The Fireplace Plan

October 10, 2018

corgi on a bed

Welcome to week 2 of the Fall 2018 One Room Challenge! If you’re not familiar, every spring and fall, 20 featured designers selected by the ORC team participate in a 6-week challenge to decorate one room. The event is hosted by Linda Weinstein of Calling it Home and Better Homes and Gardens. In addition to the featured designers, hundreds of other folks with blogs (and Instagram this season!) join in on the challenge as Guest Participants <— that’s me.

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is my second One Room Challenge (last season I made over our guest room). I am glad you’re here!

For this season’s challenge, I am making over our master bedroom. Sometimes I like to think of the One Room Challenge as the Great British Bake Off of interior design blogging and if you’re following me down that path, I’m about to talk about what I like to think of as my “showstopper.” In last week’s master bedroom plan post, I talked about my overall vision for the room and the most important, most labor-intensive DIY part: building an electric fireplace surround. But where did that idea come from?

On my list of “one-day house hopes” (we all have one of the those locked up in our brains, right?) is a bedroom fireplace. So many of the Victorian homes I drool over have them along with some of my favorite Tudor and Craftsman homes. Our bedroom actually used to have one – the brick chimney and firebox have been plastered over and the surround removed, but the footprint is still visible – and I figured that was the end of the story. It seemed completely impossible to me to restore the old fireplace, to dig out the firebox and make sure the chimney was safe for use. And so, that was the end of it.

DIY Fireplace Inspiration

That was until I saw some of my favorite home bloggers adding electric fireplaces to their homes.
Nicole Cole vestige home fireplace surround electric insert

[ Vestige Home via Instagram ]

Nicole built this beautiful surround with a modern take on a traditional fireplace style.

modern DIY recessed electric fireplace

[ Chris Loves Julia ]

Julia and Chris Marcum built a recessed modern marble surround fireplace with the most beautiful view into their stunning new master bath. Be sure to read their excellent post on how to DIY a built-in electric fireplace.

Classic Fireplace Surround Inspiration

Michelle Smith interview on Rip & Tan

[ from the home of Michelle Smith via Rip & Tan ]

Once the internet gave me the courage to build something similar,  I had to think: what do I want this thing to look like? How can I make it appropriate to our house with its Tudor-ish and Craftsman-ish and Colonial-ish style? My dream is a beautiful stone surround with an arch in the middle like the one pictured above. But as I do not know how to make a single thing out of stone, I figured maybe I’d better try to capture similar design elements with wood and tile.

Fireplace Design Building Plans

This is what I’d like the view of the fireplace to look like when all is said and done. It would be nice to have 2 chairs or a small chaise or sofa near the fireplace but honestly, we don’t need more furniture to trip over on the way to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

Sketchup Fireplace PlansMaster bedroom fireplace framing view

Here’s a look at the back of the surround. The plan is to build some framing to both hold up the electric insert and to support the surround. A piece of cement board will be secured to the framing and then tiled. Next, the framing and tile combo will be secured inside the surround. Last, the electric insert is slid in from the front of the surround.

The electric fireplace insert vents through the front and doesn’t need extra venting or clearance in the back beyond its actual depth. I’ll just need to make room to pass the cord outside of the surround so I can plug it into the wall.

fireplace surround deconstructed diagram

Here’s how the 3 main components look on their own.

Tile

I love the aged crackle on the tile in our blush bathroom and want something similar for the new fireplace. I want to add a little bit of color and age with the tile and have ordered a few samples.

Tile Options from TileBar

Which would you choose? Tundra, Arctic Blue, or Deep Emerald? There are some obvious color differences in the examples above pulled from the TileBar website but they are all beautiful in person. I am leaning strongly toward the Arctic Blue!

Master Bedroom Makeover Checklist

So how’s it going with the rest of the One Room Challenge?

  • Order bed
  • Order nightstands
  • Make complex plans for the fireplace surround and run them by Dad
  • Order electric fireplace insert
  • Order tile
  • Build fireplace
  • Buy curtains
  • Pick curtain rods
  • Choose and order rug
  • Pick and order a mattress
  • Order prints and frames for photo gallery grid
  • Other art
  • Find new dresser for Andy
  • Get king size bedding

The fireplace project isn’t a weekend or even a week-long project but instead will come together over the course of the challenge. My dad and I have talked through the plans and are ready to get started, but since we live about an hour and a half apart, this will be an extra tricky build. I’ll keep you updated but will probably save the fireplace reveal for the whole room reveal! So stay tuned.

Remember to follow along and see what the Featured Designers and Guest Participants are up to!

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

Before and After One Room Challenge The Scenery House

One Room Challenge Week 1: The Master Bedroom Plan

October 3, 2018

mid century nightstand casement windows master bedroom

It’s the first week of the Fall 2018 One Room Challenge! If you’re not familiar, every spring and fall, 20 featured designers selected by the ORC team participate in a 6-week challenge to decorate one room. The event is hosted by Linda Weinstein of Calling it Home and Better Homes and Gardens. In addition to the featured designers, hundreds of other folks with blogs (and Instagram this season!) join in on the challenge as Guest Participants <— that’s me.

If you’ve hopped over to this post from the ORC website – welcome! I’m Emily, this is my blog, and I’m working on undecorating the 1929 tudor-ish home I share with my husband, Andy, and our corgi, Penelope. This is my second One Room Challenge (last season I made over our guest room). I am glad you’re here!

We loved our guest room makeover so much that we decided it was time for our master bedroom to get the ORC treatment. What I love most about the One Room Challenge is the community and accountability. I have the support of my fellow participants and the pressure to actually finish a project – which is not always my strong suit.

Our bedroom is large (about 19′ x 13′) for the age and size of our house, with two closets and an ensuite bathroom. I’ve really only photographed small corners and vignettes in this room because overall, it feels a bit empty and unfinished. Let’s take a look at what it looked like when we first saw it in the listing photos and where we are now.

Canopy bed listing photo

[photo from real estate listing]

The walls were painted a purple-mauve-gray and there was a chair rail around the room. The canopy bed and very low hung curtains make the ceiling look so low. I hope you’re counting because there are FIVE rugs in here. And not one is anchored by a dang thing.

small rugs everywhere listing photo

[photo from real estate listing]

And while you’re counting, see 2 more rugs in the bathroom. The floors in this room were in bad shape, probably the worst in the whole house which is probably the reason for all the rugs.

Ok, so what does it look like now? After having the floors refinished, we went functionally sparse and a little minimal in the space, using furniture from our much smaller apartment bedroom. As soon as we moved in I removed the chair rail and after a few months, painted the walls my favorite white – Simply White by Benjamin Moore. We swapped out the chandelier for a much simpler fixture by Cedar and Moss and put up our favorite IKEA SKOGSKLOVER shades (more about our roller shares here). And that’s about it.

White wall master bedroom mid century

We placed our bed in front of the windows to make the space feel open with lots of room on both sides. So much room, we could totally (and will totally!) fit a king size bed here PLUS bigger night stands.

White wall master bedroom leaded glass windowsdark shag rug white walls mid century dresser

My 3 drawer dresser (part of an amazing Kent Coffey Tableau set I scored for less than $200 at a thrift store many moons ago) is placed in front of what used to be a fireplace. The brick chimney has been plastered over and sits directly above the fireplace in our living room. I have always wanted a fireplace in my bedroom – there’s just something so classic and cozy about such a thing – so I decided why not just add one? So I will! And I’ve got plans! More on how we’re going to add a fireplace surround with an electric insert to this room in the coming weeks!

white master bedroom louvered closet

This side of the room (opposite the windows) has Andy’s closet and the door to the ensuite bathroom. I replaced the pulls on the closet doors but did not give them the fresh coat of paint they deserve.

master bedroom closets

To the left of Andy’s closet is the door to my walk-in closet. And I know, I know, that small floating rug! It used to be our living room rug in our apartment and then was in the record area in our living room until we replaced it. It landed up here because we had nowhere else to put it and Penelope (our corgi) really appreciates rugs.

white walls mid century dresser kent coffey tableau

This is Andy’s dresser which is part of the Kent Coffey Tableau set I mentioned earlier. It’s in great shape but Andy’s wishlist for our room includes a 6 drawer dresser with smooth, soft-close drawers.

blank white wall master bedroom

What a nice big blank wall. And what’s that blob at the top? That’s where a vent for the old AC system used to. We started ripping out the old unit, vents, and ductwork over a month ago and haven’t finished skim coating and painting all the patched holes. My plan for this wall is to create a tidy gallery grid of Andy’s photographs.

Master Bedroom Design Ideas

modern traditional neutral master bedroom

[ flush mount fixture | black frames | print | curtains | lampnightstands | bed | quilt | basket | rug | pillow ]

My design starting point was that beautiful white oak spindle bed from Rejuvenation. I’ve had my eye on it since I first saw the walnut version in Emily Henderson’s Bedroom. It’s just gorgeous. It’s definitely a splurge item but when I looked around for other options I just couldn’t find anything I loved as much.

I really want to find an 8×10 rug that has a modern traditional look with some blush, blue, and gray tones – the one in the mood board sold out before I could get it! The shag rugs under our bed (what we have now is actually 2 IKEA rugs side-by-side pretending to be 1 single rug, so secret’s out: we have 3 rugs in our bedroom) are super cozy to walk on but very difficult to clean. Even our Dyson has trouble with these shag rugs and now that we have a Roomba, we want a lower pile rug that is Roomba-friendly.

Master Bedroom Layout

master bedroom layout skechup

To-do List

  • Pick and order furniture
  • Select the perfect king-size mattress in a box
  • Buy king-size bedding and pillows
  • Curate gallery grid from Andy’s travel photography
  • Art!
  • Design and build fireplace surround
  • Get curtains (and maybe figure out the elusive euro pleat)
  • Find the perfect large and slightly less large rug combo
  • Finish patching old vent hole and touch up paint
  • Shop for a new dresser for Andy
  • Transfer my clothes from the 3 drawer dresser into the built-in dresser in my closet

Does that sound like enough? Wooow. Well, here goes.

Remember to follow along and see what the Featured Designers and Guest Participants are up to!

One Room Challenge Guest Participant

Hey heads up: This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.

DIY One Room Challenge

How to Make Your Own Canvas Float Frame

June 25, 2018

This post contains affiliate links, if you make a purchase after clicking one of my links, I will be compensated.

DIY Oak Canvas Float Frame

For my One Room Challenge Guest Room Project Reveal (check out all of my One Room Challenge Posts here), I showed off my 3 DIY paintings mounted in handmade oak frames. I completed my paintings to solve the challenge of filling one large bank wall and wanted my DIY abstract art to really shine so worked with my dad to build custom canvas float frames. Float frames are different from regular frames meant for canvas because they are made to be just a little bit bigger than the canvas itself. While a regular canvas frame would hug tight against the canvas, a float frame has an intentional gap all the way around to make the canvas look like it’s floating inside the frame.

Before I get into the how-to of it all, lemme show you what one of these frames looks like IRL.Alternate view of oak float frame

Side view of oak float frame

Oak Float Frame Detail

Oak Canvas Frame

How to Make a Wooden Canvas Float Frame

I’m going to walk you step by step through the process of making your own float frame for canvas art. Heads up – there are power tools involved. We don’t have a table saw or miter saw of our own yet, so I visited my dad who lives a couple hours away to help me hustle on this project for the Spring 2018 One Room Challenge.

What You’ll Need

The Plan

How to Make a Canvas Float Frame

How to Make a Canvas Float Frame

My first step, as with most projects, was to draw up a plan in SketchUp. I wanted to figure out the best way to assemble the frames so that the edges were a clean, solid plank and that the back was tidy. It also helps me to draw things out to check on proportions so I could be sure the wood frame wouldn’t look too thick against the canvas.

My frames are made to fit 24×30″ canvases – I picked mine up at Jo Ann’s. I decided I wanted a 1/4″ gap between the canvas and the frame and for the canvas to be recessed 1/8″ from the front edge of the frame.

If you want to make the same frame as I did for a 24×30″ canvas, here are the dimensions:

Frame Side

  • 2 pieces cut to 2″ wide x 31 1/8″ long x 1/2″ deep
  • 2 pieces cut to 2″ wide x 25 1/2″ long x 1/2″ deep

Frame Back

  • 2 pieces cut to 2″ wide x 30 1/8″ long x 1/2″ deep
  • 2 pieces cut to 2″ wide x 24 1/2″ long x 1/2″ deep

Picking the Wood

Up until my dad and I made it to Home Depot, I wasn’t sure if I’d be going with oak or pine for the frame. Poplar is a good, inexpensive option but has a lot of green in it so it’s a good choice if you’re planning on painting it. I knew I didn’t want to paint my frames and I didn’t really want to stain them either – once I set eyes on the oak, I knew it was the way to go.

How to pick straight wood planks

When you pick your wood, try to find the truest wood planks you can. You want wood that won’t lie to you (does this count as a pun?) but more than that, you want the straightest wood you can buy. How do you tell if a plank is straight? Hold the plank up with one end close to your face and look straight down the wood – you’ll be able to spot curves in the wood pretty easily. See above for the proper form as demonstrated by my dad.

Organizing wood planks

My dad and I looked at every board in the little cubby hole and sorted them into “these are good,” “these might work,” and “these are bad” stacks.

How to Remove Stickers from Wood

Removing stickers from wood with hairdryer

How to remove sticker residue from wood with rubbing alcohol

Once we got back to my parents’ house with all our supplies, I started removing the barcode stickers from the wood. They left behind a lot of sticky residue and I tried a few different methods to remove it. A hairdryer helped to loosen the main sticker from the wood but wasn’t super helpful for what was left behind. I tried pulling the sticker residue off with duct tape, but that wasn’t super effective either. Then I tried rubbing alcohol on a rag and it worked wonders without staining or discoloring the wood – if you try this, you should probably test the alcohol on a scrap piece of work first to double check that it won’t discolor your wood. In most cases, I could still sort of see where the sticker had been but was mostly concerned with removing the sticky bits.

Rip That Wood

Ripping wood on a table saw

My plans called for wood at a different width than what we found at the store so my dad trimmed both the length and width of the planks on his table saw.

Another piece of advice from my dad, Joe: trim wood at both ends to shorten it instead of just taking from one end. Wood sold in planks like this is often thinner at the ends because of how it’s planed.

Organize Your Wood

Grouping oak planks by grain

I noticed that the grain of the oak differed from plank to plank but I wanted all pieces on each frame to work together. I organized the wood by grain type (tighter, looser) and then gathered them in groups of 4 for each of the 3 frames.

Marking the best edges of the oak planks

I also used small pieces of painters tape to mark the best sides of each piece of the wood to be used as the outside and front edges of the frame.

Make Miter Cuts

Cutting frame pieces with a miter saw

Miter cut pieces of wood for framing

Then it was time for those miter cuts. The pieces for the sides received cuts along their thing edge while the back pieces were cut along their wide edge. Miter cuts make for a really beautiful, profesh looking corner.

Glue the Frame Corners

Applying wood glue to miter cuts

Building frame using corner clamps

Starting first with the oak pieces for the sides of the frame, we put glue on the ends and clamped them together using the corner clamps.

Secure Corners with a Nail Gun

Using a nail gun to secure frame corners

Detail of nail holes at bottom of frame

We used a nail gun to secure the corners. The nails went in at the top and bottom of the frame rather than the sides so they’d be less visible. You can also use v nails and a joiner to join your corners at the back of the frame.

We added more nails than is necessary if you allow for proper dry time on your wood glue. I needed to get my frames finished in one day before loading them into my car and driving home. If you can allow for at least 24 hours of dry time, you won’t have to rely on nails as much.

Fit in the Frame Backing

Fitting the frame back pieces

Fine tuning the fit of the back pieces

Once the outside frame was complete, we removed it from the clamps and started fitting in the back pieces. As you can see in this picture, we needed to cut a little bit more off to get a perfect fit. Make sure to work on a flat surface so you can push the back pieces the whole way down into the frame to create a level back for your frame.

Glue the Corners of the Frame Backing

Gluing back pieces of float frame

Once the pieces were fine-tuned to fit together tightly, we ran a bead of wood glue along the miter cut and the long edge that fits inside the frame.

Detail of glued back corner of frame

Here’s a look at the freshly glued back of the frame.

Fill Nail Holes and Sand

Filling Nail Holes with wood filler

If you use a nail gun, you’ll want to fill those nail holes. I picked up golden oak wood filler that matched my frame perfectly. For small holes, you can just squeeze wood filler out into the hole or onto your finger and smooth it out. Let it dry, see if it shrinks (it probably will) then refill if needed and let dry fully. Once the wood filler is dry, use a fine grit sandpaper to sand down high spots.

Stain and Seal the Frame

If you want to stain your frame, now’s the time to do it. If you like the natural look of the wood you use, you should seal the wood with a water-based varnish. You can use the brush-on type or spray, sanding with fine grit sandpaper between coats. Adding a non-yellowing, acrylic coating will protect your frame from moisture and make it easier to clean.

How to Mount a Canvas into a Canvas Float Frame

Using shims to place canvas in frame with equal spacing

Andy picked up 1/4″ thick pieces of wood to use as shims to make sure the canvas was 1/4″ away from the edge all the way around.

Putting in screws

Use flat head screws to secure the canvas to the frame so that you don’t have a screw head sticking out and scratching your wall. We ended up using 6 screws to secure the canvas to the frame because while the frames were squared up and flat, the canvases weren’t. Securing the canvas at multiple points to the frame straightened out the canvas.

Adding Picture Wire to the Wooden Canvas Float Frame 

Back of oak float frame with hanging hardware Detail of float frame hanging hardware

We hung the picture wire on the inside edge of the frame backing pieces. This way, nothing is sticking out on the back of the frame to scratch the walls or add a weird gap between the frame and wall.

Wowowow. My paintings look so good in their new frames. This can be a great weekend project if you have access to a table saw, miter saw, and nail gun. There are no special order materials here – I picked everything up at Home Depot. I love the effect the float mount gives and I’m so proud that I could design and build these with my dad. I’ll take any excuse to spend a whole day with him. Is this a project you think you could tackle?

DIY Canvas Float Frame