As I'm writing this, it's been just over 3 years since we bought our first home. I thought it would be fun to share a look back at the progress we've made and also some inspiration for the rooms that are still left on our to-do list! So far, my husband Anthony and I have done all the renovating ourselves, with help from family and friends. Home improvement is a priority for us, and we are slowly working on projects as time and budget allow.
Back in 2015, I shared a full "Before" House Tour and have been writing about our progress ever since. (You can see my 30 most recent home posts here, or view my entire blog archive for more.) Since we just had our first baby, it's a little up in the air which project will be next on our to-do list but I thought it would be fun to share my ideas for our unfinished rooms anyway. I'm sure my vision for each room will evolve by the time we get to them, but as I was waiting patiently for our daughter, Sage, to arrive I had lots of fun pinning interior design inspiration on my Pinterest boards! So you can thank my "virtual nesting" spree for inspiring this blog post.
Note: All of the inspiration images in this post are clickable, and you can also check out my Pinterest Boards to see what's been catching my eye lately!
The living room was the first room we tackled. We spent the first two months with barely any furniture as we saved up for our couch. I painted the walls Iron Ore by Sherwin Williams and we slowly collected other furniture and accessories, mostly secondhand, to finish this room.
We'd eventually like to remove all of the carpeting on the first floor and refinish the original hardwoods underneath, something that I know would take this room to the next level! And Anthony and I are still waffling back and forth on window treatments. The living room is at the front of the house, looking out onto the porch and street beyond so we want privacy but I also like to let in as much light as possible. I think the ideal solution might be shades with top-down-bottom-up functionality. I've considered a ton of options for curtains- plain linen, luxe green velvet, solid charcoal gray, folksy patterns - but at the moment I'm feeling the idea of a very simple plaid. If we even want curtains. We'll see what we land on, if we ever make up our minds! I've also been wanting to do a faux tin ceiling and crown moulding in here since we moved in. But it feels silly to spend money on that while we still have so many projects on our to-do list. Wouldn't it be so pretty though?
The dining room was another room we got together quickly after moving in. With my Aunt Bea's midcentury modern dining table and Eames style chairs purchased from Overstock, we had all the function we needed in this room. We painted the walls Pearl Gray by Sherwin Williams and swapped out the art and accessories several times before we landed on this final iteration of this dining room. And there's a reason I say "final"...
...is because this room is in the process of being turned into my new home office and Stevie Storck Design Co. headquarters. My previous office just wasn't cutting it anymore. It's a smaller room that has to also act as a hallway because you walk through it to get to the staircase that I think will work just perfectly as the new dining room.
I don't want to just recreate the old dining room in the new space. Anthony is partial to our current table and chairs, but I'm open to replacing them with something else if we find the perfect thing. Honestly, what I really want to do in this room is remove that doorway and cut into the wall on the left to create an open bannister for the staircase behind it and open up this room even more to the rest of the first floor. Also, I would love to install a gas fireplace with a salvaged antique surround in between those two windows once the other walls are down. We live in a 1903 colonial/farmhouse, I think we need at least one fireplace! But that's a much larger project than we have the time or budget to take on in the near future. So when it comes to a "phase one" makeover, I'm having a little trouble visualizing what I want. I would love to do an interesting wallpaper or architectural wall treatment, it doesn't make sense to do that now when I'm hoping to tear down about 30% of the walls in here. If we decide to join in with the One Room Challenge again this fall or spring, this room could be a good candidate. If we were to start this project right now, I would go for something in between rustic, collected farmhouse and polished English country home. Eventually the floors in here will be the original hardwoods too.
With the dining room moving across the hallway, I'll be able to have a bigger office with more storage and a door that I can close at the end of the day. This is also the first room downstairs that we've taken the carpeting out of and the original wood floors are just about ready to be stained and finished. Once that's done, we'll probably just move all my office furniture in and let me rearrange and get settled in there for a while before we do any real decorating. But here are some home office vibes that are inspiring me right now:
So far we've done some little things in the kitchen, like removing the cabinet above the fridge so it would fit better, demo-ing the scalloped valance above the sink, painting the door to the porch black and removing some cabinets to install a dishwasher. But overall, the kitchen looks about the same as when we moved in 3 years ago. I have big plans for this space though!
It's a large room that isn't being used to it's fullest potential. I would love to do a complete gut and remodel, but I think there's a lot we can do ourselves on a smaller budget. I want to rework the cabinetry we have into a better floor plan, remove some more of the uppers, paint the cabinets and add new hinges and hardware for a fresh look. The walls in here are a mix of old wallpaper and formica that have been painted over, so I like the idea of stripping some of that down and maybe doing vertical paneling or horizontal beadboard for some texture and character in here. I would ideally like to uncover the original wood floors in here as well, although I could see doing tile in both the kitchen and the laundry room off of it. I'm drawn to these country style kitchens, and although I plan to add some open shelving I would want to lean more towards the minimal styling of the two kitchens on the right.
We have two bathrooms, one on the first floor and one on the second floor. Really, we have a third in the basement but it's pretty basement-y and gross down there so we've never used it. The upstairs bathroom was recently remodeled but with builder basic finishes. It would be fairly easy to tile the floor in there, since it's a smaller room and with that, some paint and maybe a new vanity that room could be complete. The downstairs needs more of a complete gut and remodel, so that project is a little further off. For the time being, I'm just collecting general bathroom inspiration and once we decide when to start one of the bathroom projects I'll narrow down which ideas I want to use in which. I want them to share some elements, so that the whole house feels cohesive but I definitely want each to have their own personality too.
Our Master Bedroom is a project we've been working on for quite some time! This room was my first attempt at the One Room Challenge, and we bit off a bit more than we could chew at the time! By Week 6, we did have the random bathroom sink removed, the original yellow pine floors refinished, a DIY faux brick accent wall installed and a new chandelier hung. We eventually moved in the furniture (once the floors were cured) but our progress stalled for a good year or two. This spring, I was motivated to get back to work on our bedroom before our daughter was born and I'm so glad we did! I'd say at this point, our bedroom is 85% complete but I shared an update post because I felt like I had left you all hanging for way too long on this room!
Read More: Master Bedroom Progress
What's left on our to-do list for our bedroom is a little finish trim work, adding curtains to my closet, finishing out Anthony's closet (he built and organization system for mine as my birthday present!), and installing real window treatment. I've already changed some of the bedding since I last photographed our room and I'm thinking about bringing a little more color into the space with different accent pillows. But overall, we are in love with our room! And I'm so glad we finished as much as we did before Sage was born. We've spent a lot of time in here the past few weeks!
Enter our favorite project so far, Sage's nursery! We decided to try again at the One Room Challenge for this room and this time we were successful in finishing the room in just six weeks! Designing and putting together a nursery for our first child with Anthony was so special for us. Of all the rooms in our house, her room is the most complete. It's a mix of old and new and feels peaceful and calm, which is exactly what I was hoping to create for our little girl. There are a couple little projects I'd like to do in her closet, but she has real window treatments! That's more than I can say for most of the house. We absolutely love spending time in this room!
The guest bedroom was one of the projects I thought I'd start with when we bought the house, but 3 years later it's full of stuff but still never really been decorated. There are paint swatches on the wall that have been there since the summer after we moved in! I shared some vintage nautical inspiration for the guest bedroom around the time we moved in, but I'm kind of over that vibe. For our house at least. We're not looking to start any new projects in the immediate future (we're a little busy caring for a newborn) but my wheels have been turning about this room. I love our dark living room, and I'm thinking it would be fun to do a dark bedroom, since the paint color of our master bedroom and the nursery are both on the light-medium side.
We're not looking to start any new projects in the immediate future (we're a little busy caring for a newborn) but my wheels have been turning about this room. I love our dark living room, and I'm thinking it would be fun to do a dark bedroom, since the paint color of our master bedroom and the nursery are both on the light-medium side. I love the feel of this guest bedroom I designed for a client last year. Here are some of the things I've been pinning for our a future guest bedroom makeover.
Read More: 10 Guest Bedroom Essentials
So the fourth bedroom in our house is the exact same size and shape as our living room. So it's very large for a bedroom, and doesn't have a closet. At this point in our lives, I don't think we need two guest bedrooms so we want to turn this room into a family room that can also function as a playroom for Sage as she gets older. Right now, it's housing all of our leftover furniture plus some home improvement supplies from the nursery and master bedroom projects. But here's what it looked like when we moved in!
We weren't planning to tackle this room anytime soon, but a $25 distressed leather couch I picked up from Facebook Marketplace might have changed that! Our end goal is to have a projector up here for family movie nights but we'll probably start slowly working on this space once I can convince Anthony to haul to new leather couch up the stairs. Since it's literally the same footprint as our living room, I want to go the opposite direction and do light walls. I would love to do another wall moulding treatment like we did in the nursery! We'll see if that idea makes the cut. Other than that, I'm envisioning a really cozy, layered space with maybe a bit more quirk than the other room in our house.
That's it for now! Our days are looking a bit different now that Sage is here, but I'm itching to get back to work on the house. Fingers crossed we'll get something done while I'm on maternity leave from my interior design business. For more of what I'm up to lately, and a first look at any new projects be sure to follow along on Instagram!