Sunday, June 22, 2014

A Teal Transformation

Before I get into the meat of this post, I want to again thank everyone who came to our house "cooling" party over the weekend. It was such a fun night and I am still just tickled so many of you took the time to visit our home! We're so lucky to have such great family and friends, love you all!  

OK, back to business.
A few months ago, Eric and I picked up these Rast chest from IKEA for our bedroom. I wanted matching nightstands, and the extra storage these provide is an added bonus. 
Of course I couldn't leave well enough alone, and soon started formulating a plan to give these unfinished dressers a glam new look. 
The paint color I chose was Beta Fish by Behr. I fell head-over-heels for this deep teal and knew it would be perfect in our bedroom. 
The whole process was easy enough, and took 3 coats of high-gloss paint to get the coverage I was looking for. 
Since I knew I wanted to swap out the wooden knobs the dresser came with for something a bit prettier, I filled the holes and sanded everything down nice and smooth before painting. 
These little beauties came from the Ohio Valley Antique Mall. I LOVE looking at the vintage hardware they have, and I was able to snag a 20 count bag of these pulls for only $8! 
Before and after! Another example of the incredible power of a fresh coat of paint. 
These bring a smile to my face every time I walk into our bedroom. This space is now another step closer to looking like the mood board I shared in our last bedroom post
I think the next project in here will be to tackle that stenciled wall. Honestly, I have no idea how that will go, I've never done any wall stenciling before. But hey! There's a first for everything.  :) 

Friday, June 20, 2014

Suit up! Banister Goes Black and White

You guys, I am BEYOND excited to share this transformation with you! 
Since Eric has been off of school for summer break, he has been KICKING BUTT AND TAKING NAMES! Words can't begin to express how grateful I am of him and his incredible handy-man skills. I know I don't thank him enough. So honey, if you're reading this THANK YOU!!!! 
Yeah, he's a keeper. 

This weekend we are hosting our first official house party! Yes I know, it only took an entire YEAR for us to get around to it, but better late than never right? 
Now I'm at that "anxious excited" level where I keep thinking of ridiculous things we need to do before everyone comes over. Do you ever get that way? I am fully aware that NO ONE will notice how our coffee table books are stacked...but that didn't stop me from rearranging everything last night and separating them buy size and and color. 

My absurd habits aside, this party has been a excellent motivator to get our butts in gear and complete some of the larger projects on our to-do list. I shared how we finally rid ourselves of all that unsightly brown trim in THIS POST, which was extremely satisfying, and Eric also painted all the doors upstairs white to match. 

One task that I didn't have on my radar, but Eric cranked out in a couple weeks anyhow (again, note the amazingness that is my husband) was the banister on our stairs! We knew we wanted to give it a paint job (especially with all of that new crisp white trim around it) and I've always been attracted to the dramatic effect of black and white stairs, so of course I pounced at the chance to reflect that look in our home!
Source / Source / Source / Source 
So armed with a plan (and some advice from his Dad) Eric went to town demolishing our stairs.
Since these stairs have been painted a dozen or so times, the detailing on the spindles was getting lost. To bring those details back to life, the strategy was to take everything apart, strip, paint, and then reassemble. 
Layers and layers of paint. 
Once everything was torn down, Eric started stripping *cue sexy music*  NO NO not that! Jeez you guys... 
I wish I knew more of what chemicals he used, or the exact process it took to get all the paint off, but I DO know that all his hard work left us with these wonderfully bare spindles.
One coat of primer + two coats of paint = one incredible dapper banister! 
You guys!!! I am OBSESSED! 
Every time I walk up the stairs, I run my hand over that sexy black banister in awe and whisper sweet nothings to it. 
Adios strange mix of wood, brown paint, and...well...more brown paint. Hello black and white tuxedo bliss! 
The next thing to conquer in the foyer is painting the backs of the steps white, and replacing that runner with something a little less brown and a little more "us". 
Seriously, there has been SO MUCH BROWN in this house. 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Walk, Drink, Chill, Repeat.

This Saturday, my great friend Dan and I decided to enjoy the absolutely GORGEOUS weather, and roam all around Cincinnati. 
Our first stop: The City Flea
Over the summer this event happens once a month in Washington Park, and is pretty much like Etsy...but in real life! Tons of creative types gather on the lawn and sell their products. Vintage clothes, handmade crafts, original jewelry, unique gifts, everything! 
This park is quickly becoming one of my favorite places in Cincinnati. Last Sunday Dan and I went for a free concert, Opera in the Park, presented by the Cincinnati Opera company. Every weekend there are free events at the park for the public to enjoy.

After browsing through the flea, we headed deeper downtown and grabbed a quick drink at Nada. I've walked passed this restaurant so many times and have ALWAYS wanted to check it out. They are a contemporary Mexican restaurant, and I can tell you first-hand that the margaritas are exceptionally yummy :) 
We dubbed our look for the day "hipster-hippy". 

Once we got our fill of downtown we thought, "Hey! Why not keep going and head up to Mt. Adams!?". So sticking to the theme of walk, drink, chill, repeat we wondered around and found ourselves at The Blind Lemon Cafe. This cafe is like a secret garden where magical fairies come along and serve you wine, beer, and little pint sized bowls of pretzels. 
I still can't get over those over sized vintage posters! And the mirrors expand the space by adding so much drama! Eric is going to come home one day and find a giant mirror propped up against our fence in the backyard. 
I could have sat there all afternoon. 

The last stop of the day was the Unwind Wine Bar in Hyde Park. If you enjoy wine, beer, appetizers, and desserts this is the place for you. We each had a delicious glass of vino and split a lick-your-fork-clean slice of lemon blueberry cheesecake. 
Walk, drink, chill, repeat. 
This should be the mantra for every weekend. I don't think we could have planned a more relaxing day of  exploring our wonderful city if we tried. 
So if you're in the area and looking for someplace new to hang out; Washington Park, Nada, The Blind Lemon, and Unwind all unofficially have the Dan and Beth Stamp of Approval! 

Friday, June 6, 2014

Brown Trim Be Gone!

Last weekend Eric and I began the daunting task of transforming all of that dark trim in our foyer, stairs, and hallway from boorish brown to a wonderful bright white. A LOT of taping-off was involved, which ended up being the most tedious part of the process. In the end we had to tape along the floor, 7 doors, 2 windows, as well as the entire staircase. Fortunately we plan on painting the back of the stairs white anyhow, so that was one less area that needed taped.
After an initial coat of Kiltz primer, we had to give it another two coats of Simply White by Benjamin Moore to get the coverage we were looking for. 
The green tape really gives it an extra something don't ya think? 
Even though each coat easily took two hours, and there were just soooo many doors to go around, this has to be one of the more rewarding transformations we've made. Not having that depressing brown darkening up every corner is a HUGE improvement. 
I apologize the horrible photos, or more horrible than usual I should say. These are kind of awkward spaces to capture, there's just not a great place to stand to get the whole picture. 
To make up for my dreadful photography skills, about a little before and after! The pictures on the left were taken shortly after we moved in. 
Notes on random things you may have noticed: 
  • Yes the painting around the front door is spotty. The goal is to paint it a brilliant new color in the near future so we weren't too concerned about getting white on it. 
  • Same goes for the back of the stairs. 
  • We're Eric's also in the middle of refinishing the banister. That's why it's spindle-less and looks like a crazy death trap.  
  • Why yes I still am in love with my adorable bathroom curtain! Thanks for asking :) 
There you have it! Gone are the days of chocolate-colored despair, and into to a world of finally-all-the-freaking-trim-matches white bliss!