Posts Tagged ‘Remodel’

Reception Room Makeover:

Okay!  Back to filling you in on the details of the MAJOR office makeover!


Now we’ll cover all the juicy details of the front Reception Room.


Office Inspiration at

Again… This was the main inspiration for most of the rooms.  In some way or another they all resembled this.  Of course instead of doing uppers on the bottom, we did lowers.  This better allowed for more of a desk feel to the area.



We also loved this T shaped desk and how it both looked so awesome yet was super efficient! The only difference is that we made it bar height instead of desk height.  And I totally TOTALLY loved how it turned out!!! It’s so comfortable for either sitting on the stills or just standing at. No one really works at the reception room desk for long periods of time, as far as I know… It was intended to be more of a place for potential customers to drop in and look at sample shingles, sign papers, etc…

I am curious though how reality is playing out there and how they are ending up using all the spaces!!! 🙂


Office Remodel at

This is the footprint of the whole unit.  The goal was to build something that looked built-in but in reality could be removed and taken somewhere else easily if they ever moved.  And I think we succeeded because in the whole unit there were very few screws into the wall studs!  The whole thing can be taken down by removing just a handful of screws.  Boom baby!


Office Remodel at

This is what it looked like from the front view. (Not including the T desk part)  What I love about the guys is that they were able to take these rough sketches and totally make them come to life even better than I imagined!

For instance, Adam had the idea of adding lights above the bookshelves.  I would never have thought about doing that let alone HOW he did it but when it was done?!?!?  It TOTALLY made the whole unit!  Seriously it was awesome!!!


Office Remodel Before/After at

Again, The before and after.

Amazing, right?!?

The area rug came from Rugs USA.

The decor from Master’s Hand, Marshalls and Target.

The cupboards from Home Depot.

Butcher block countertops from Menards.

Cabinet Hardware from D. Lawless.

And the furniture was bought on garage sales and given a fresh coat coat of paint.  Score!!

Can’t you see why I’m so in love with this remodel?!?!

The inspiration…

What inspired us in the office overhaul?

Office Inspiration at{Pinterest}

The basis of our inspiration was something along the lines of this awesome built-in by Thrifty Decor Chick.

Since we were giving 5 rooms an overhaul in 5 days, we knew we needed to find ways to speed things up.  Using stock cabinets and building from there seemed like a great way to achieve that!  I also love how all the rooms are different but they tie in together so well.



We loved this T desk but also loved the idea of a bar height desk for the front reception room.



We also used this inspiration for the group office.  Thankfully before we started on our 5 day blitz, Adam (one of the awesome guys in Manhattan) built in the desk similar to this one.  It has 3 workspaces and looks like it will be super efficient.

Anyway… This is kind of the direction we wanted to go… More details will follow room-by-room! 🙂


Cupboards – Home Depot and Menards

Butcher Block Countertops – Menards

Cupboard Hardware – D. Lawless 

Decor – Marshall’s, Target and Master’s Hand

Secret Office Remodel…

So my last good week before I dropped into the pit we call first trimester, we worked on pretty much my favorite project ever.

And I fully acknowledge I say that phrase often declaring this or that project my favorite project ever… But this time it really was!  And I’m fairly certain it will stay my favorite project for quite some time!


Sam’s boss (also our awesome friend) went on vacation and since he was gone, we (and when I say we, I mostly mean his wife Emily) brainstormed on how to do a week-long remodel of their office they had recently rented.

So for weeks, together we talked… compiled inspiration pictures… drew up plans… All in secret.


We had 5 rooms to complete in about 5 days. Thank goodness we had lots of help!  A couple of the guys that also work for the same company in Manhattan put in a ton of work on it and we even recruited some other friends and family to paint, etc…

It was awesome!

And totally felt like we were doing a HGTV show! Ha!  Time crunch… Lots of help… Total overhaul on a space… 🙂


Anyway… On to the pictures!  I’ll give more details later! 🙂


Office Remodel Before/After at

Reception Room

Office Remodel Before/After at

Allyn’s Office

Office Remodel Before/After at www.DIYinRealLife.comConference Room

Office Remodel Before/After at

Brandon’s Office

Office Remodel Before/After at

Group Office

See what I mean??!




Installing a door = HAPPINESS!

Door install by

Since this adorable munchkin is crawling everywhere, it’s become quite evident that we needed to install a door in the hallway with stairs that go to the basement and outside.

Handsome Man was going to be at Menards, so I mentioned he should look in the bargain door area for an interior door that might fit.

Door install by

And whatdoyaknow they had one!  Exactly what I would have picked.

And *drumroll* it was only 10 bucks people!  That’s what I’m talking’ about!!!

Door install by

 We <3 you Menards.  😉

Door install by

Have I mentioned lately how much I appreciate that Handsome Man is so good at this kind of stuff?  It’s just plain fantastic!

Door install by

Slid right in there and fit nearly perfectly!

Door install by

It’s still not pretty yet as I just finished caulking it.

But TODAY I think I’ll paint it!

Door install by

And it will be gorgeous!

It really does finish off the space!

And best of all, I can keep the munchkin away from the tools.

She really makes a beeline for tools.  Especially sharp ones.  Yeash!

It’s like she takes after her parents of something.

Kitchen: Nook Remodel – Pt. 2

So like I was saying…  Cabinets.


We used uppers instead of lowers since they were only 12 inches deep instead of 24 inches.  Then we built the bottom up using 2×8’s and wainscoting.

Kitchen: Nook Remodel  by

Fantastic, no??

Kitchen: Nook Remodel  by

Kitchen Nook Remodel at

Added 1x’s to the tops of the cabinets.  Unfortunately they were new 1x’s.  And they looked new.  And I wasn’t too keen on new looking 1x’s.

Kitchen Nook Remodel at

So out came this…

Kitchen Nook Remodel at

And this…

Kitchen Nook Remodel at

And this…

Kitchen Nook Remodel at

And this!

I basically just went at it with any tools I happened to have on hand.

Kitchen Nook Remodel at

Then I stained it…

Kitchen Nook Remodel at

And sealed it…

Kitchen Nook Remodel at

I love some of these imperfections I did.

Kitchen Nook Remodel at

Seriously loving this nook!

Kitchen: Nook Remodel – Pt. 1

Okay…. so you know what our kitchen layout looks like now…


Kitchen Nook Remodel at

See that empty space there at the end?  Initially we intended to put in a breakfast nook in that area.  But in the year and a half it took us to get to this project we realized we wouldn’t actually use it as a breakfast nook.  It tended to acquire a lot of junk and not a lot of use. 🙂

So Sam came up with this idea.

blog kitchennooklayout

It actually took me a while to warm up to the idea.

Now however? I love it!

Kitchen Nook Remodel at

The sign of progress!

Kitchen: Tiling the backsplash

After finishing the plumbing and electrical, installing the cabinets & countertops, etc… It was time to hit the backsplash.


Now I love the look of glass tile, but not the price.  I really didn’t want to put several hundred dollars into the backsplash.


Here’s the upside though.. I do love the tumbled stone look too.  Especially in combination with glass tile.  So this is what we did….


A Kitchen remodel at

The ivory 6×6 tiles looked just like tumbled stone.  It was very affordable.  I’ve used this tile several times and love it.  Unfortunately Menards stopped carrying it.  Boo!

A Kitchen remodel at

Then we cut the 12×12 glass tile pieces into 3 strips, giving us 4 inch strips of glass tile.

A Kitchen remodel at

Really really love how it turned out!!!  Pretty affordable too!  I’ll take that!  😉

Kitchen: Putting Things Back Together

After figuring out out layout problems and subsequent solutions, we got to work….


Although Handsome Man is quite proficient at both electrical AND plumbing, (I know ladies, be jealous.  I totally hit the man-lottery with Handsome Man!) we did decide to hire the professionals for the mere reason of speeding things up.  We bought the house in August and we were planning on moving in after getting married in November.  And with those chilly Nebraska winters on the way, we opted for speed.  I think that’s the key to DIY.  Do what you can, but don’t hesitate to call in a professional when needed!

A Kitchen remodel at

YAY! Progress!  New plumbing and electrical.

I love demo and I love construction.  What I don’t love are things like electrical and plumbing.

With the demo and construction, you can visually see progress.  And it’s exciting!

With boring stuff that goes in the walls, it takes so much time and doesn’t look like anything is getting done, even though it is.  *sigh*

A Kitchen remodel at

Nothin’ quite like midnight installation of insulation by the light of a halogen light! 😉

(Picture me humming “By the light, of the silvery halogen, with golden spoon, to my honey I’ll croon love’s tune…”) 😉

A Kitchen remodel at

And drywall…

A Kitchen remodel at

And more drywall…

A Kitchen remodel at

And painting…

We did keep the uppers on the left side…  They were in good condition and when painted, blended perfectly with the new cabinets!

Kitchen: Layout Changes…

Okay!  So here’s a rough idea of what our kitchen looked like…


Keep in mind, it’s a ROUGH idea.  It’s not to scale… It’s a quick rendering using various shapes in Pages.


On the upside?  You get crude stick people in some of the layouts!  Yay! 😉



Okay… You’ve been warned, continue at your own risk! 😉



A Kitchen remodel at

Here’s how it originally looked…

You’ll notice there aren’t a lot of cabinets or counter space…  Only along the left-hand wall.

The oven encroached on the already narrow doorway…

And the refrigerator took up an awkward amount of space on the right-hand wall.

Nothing was efficient or cohesive.



A Kitchen remodel at

And of course, to make things worse, you had to go through not one, but 2 narrow doorways to get to the kitchen.

Narrow door #1 into the hallway… Narrow door #2 into the kitchen… Sidestep the oven… And finally you’d be in the kitchen!

(You’ll observe the sad faced stick man. 🙁 )





A Kitchen remodel at

And so…. We opted for a more galley kitchen layout.  The additional cupboards and their storage are fantastic!  I really do have a lot of storage room for the amount of space we have!

Step one was tearing down the whole wall on the frontside of these layouts.  Floor to ceiling.

It TOTALLY opened things up between the dining room and the kitchen allowing for an enormously open floor plan.  No more hiding the dish-filled kitchen!  I have to WASH those dishes now if I want people to think I have a clean house!

That’s okay with me though…  I’ll take that trade-off!


A Kitchen remodel at

This layout made it so much simpler to get from the dining room to the kitchen!  Bypass that hallway altogether and just have an awesomely open floor plan!

(Hello happy-faced stick man! 🙂 )


A Kitchen remodel at

This is what the layout looked like on the right-hand side.  Tons of cupboard space and I LOVE how it gave the kitchen a custom cupboard look with the refrigerator and stove built in with the cupboards.

A Kitchen remodel at

This is what the left-hand side looks like with the exception that one set of drawers got moved over to the right side of the sink base cabinet and the other set of drawers became a cupboard/single drawer cabinet.

You cannot even imagine how much I now love this kitchen layout!

 It’s so.




Kitchen: Demo

As I was going back through old pictures, I realized I hadn’t shown you all the process that brought our kitchen from abandoned-forclosure-house to what we know and love as home.


It was in really rough shape…  The fact that all the pipes in the house had frozen in burst meant that we had to totally gut the bathroom and kitchen.  While we knew we were in for a lot of work, it turned out so much better than if they hadn’t caused such a mess!  It forced us to start from scratch and we got the house for a great deal because of it!  Yay for good deals – especially ones that become your home!  🙂



Refinishing a kitchen floor at

First things first – The demo part of things!  Who knew a hoe would be the tool of choice whilst ripping out dorky square ceiling tiles??

A Kitchen remodel at

Imagine my excitement when Handsome Man found a fantastic brick chimney behind all that lathe and plaster!!!

A Kitchen remodel at

You’ll notice I’m excitedly ripping out the lathe and plaster…. Shortly after this I’m pretty sure I was kissing the chimney.  I love exposed brick.  It’s as simple as that.

A Kitchen remodel at

Amazing how much junk and mess one gets into when ripping into lathe and plaster.  Seriously.

Can’t wait to show you what the previous layout looked like and how we totally changed our kitchen!  (AKA: Which walls came down! 🙂  )

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