Home decor and renovation craftalong

It’s a perfectly nice background color, you just need to fill up the foreground! :grin:

So glad you’ve finally found a place!


Yay! That’s so exciting!


I’m sure it will look great when it’s done!
We had a party tonight at a distillery in an old factory and the entrance to the venue reminded me of your stairs.


Yes! That’s kind of the aesthetic we’re going for!


I’m also not usually a fan of this type of yellow, but the room is perfect for a craft room - natural light, lots of wall space for storage, enough space to walk around, a sink for brush cleaning. And we all know no one is going to see those walls again :laughing: I really like the floor.

I’m still not 100% sure about the colour I’ll paint my room in, and I want to get started in about two weeks! It will be pink-ish or lavender probably. I’ve always loved those colours, Mr. Imma won’t want them anywhere else in the house, and I want to go for a lighter shade because of all the art that’s already going to cover the walls. Meanwhile I’m already developing plans in my head for what project I’m going to pick up next, I’m trying to do one thing at a time but it’s hard :laughing:


The house is sort of split with the bedrooms and baths on one level and the living/dining/kitchen on another. My husband really dislikes any yellow tones so we are having that lower level painted a white/gray. He likes the blue family so I will stick to those in our common areas.

I really do like a mix of patterns, colors and textures while he is more of a minimalist. You should see what I have planned for the guest room…yeah, I want to do everything all at once, but we really do need to concentrate on priorities, plus, we haven’t seen the house in person, so we do need to be patient and wait to get a feel of it.

I do have to get a new desk almost immediately as I am still going to work from home although my office is less than a mile from the house and my old office is still available if I want it (I don’t!). I do have a fold up kitchen table to use until I find one, as I do not want to rush and buy something I don’t love.

I wish I were younger and able to do a lot of the projects myself, but I can’t. So we have to also mind the budget since we will have to pay people to do the heavy stuff.

I am mapping out all of my metal shelving to see how to best make it fit. I also want to put a huge workspace in the middle for sewing and painting. It would be nice to have a comfy chair to sit and do things like embroider or knit.


I’m working on my gallery wall in my little library. I have a few embroidery pieces to add to the mix before I start adding to the wall. Some of these will stay on the bookshelf, some will go on the wall. But, it’s all framed at least.


What a nice cosy corner to sit down with some knitting!


I love it. I’m also trying to elevate my art display with frames and prominent locations. Right now I’m feeling like I have more art than wall space, but I think that just means I have to get creative!


Thanks! I think I’m going to get a shelf, or a display with a few shelves for the art I can’t hang very easily. I have a few nice walls in the library that will be good for art and pictures. I still have a few posters that need frames, but they’re large enough for their own wall section. I’m terrible at the decoration part of decorating.

I do like to sit there and knit, @Immaculata! It’s the best chair for it. The two baskets in that bookcase have WIPs and mending in them. My second Hobbes stuffie is tucked between the chair and the wall. (The coaster is even bees and honeycomb, to match the artwork.)


We haven’t done anything major lately, beyond our curb appealing the front yard a bit. But I did create a ‘Family Art Gallery’ in our kitchen, with those frames for kids artwork that you can open and slide new pictures into. I added a portrait I took of Ada and had printed, one of my lino block rabbit prints, and the set of 3 pieces my husband made me for Mother’s Day.

Jim took Ada’s handprints in craft paint, then placed tracing paper over them, and turned them into fun drawings of a muscle monster, a bubble creature, and a little girl with an octopus. I tried to leave room to add a piece or two in future, but mostly it exists to add Ada’s coloring projects to.

In the guest room I hung up a little gallery wall of various art. The bedroom was originally the last one in the row upstairs, furthest from the staircase to the front entryway. But when the previous owners created a Bonus Room above the garage in the late 80’s, they added a door from that bedroom to a hallway that connects to the Bonus Room, which in turn has a staircase down to the kitchen. Therefore we use the room as a hallway, walking through it to go down the ‘back’ staircase. Because we walk through it several times a day, I like putting some of my favorite pieces up there. That way they get to be appreciated by guests, but also see by us all the time.

Here’s a closeup with an angle to avoid glare. From the top, a lino print of a chrysanthemum that came in a lino block carving kit from Speedball. A dream catcher originally created by @FiberAlchemist about 8-9 years ago. After moving a few times, it needed a little love, so I refreshed it a bit by replacing some of the hanging bits. I left the cream lace she used, but removed the original ribbons, and added some recycled sari silk instead. A Mosquito Fairy Flying Through the Forest, created with ice dyed silk and paint by a local-ish artist, that I picked up at an art faire last year with @endymion. A beautiful rainbow-mushroom-watercolor piece by @Edel, from the Midwest Meetup last year. And a blue & metallic copper pour painting by my lovely MIL @Millykay. I’ve had the silver mirror for about 20 years, and it’s been sitting on the black console table since we moved in. But it wasn’t doing anyone any good there, so I finally got it up on a wall. I know I have another box of art that hasn’t been unpacked yet, so I left some space to add to it later .

Meanwhile, we should be happily enjoying peak pool season right now, but that’s not happening. When we moved in last year our neighbor across the street gave me the name of their pool guy, Kurt, and he was great. Opened and closed for us last year. Quick to respond and a hard worker, with a small business of his own. Cut to this year. I was a little late calling to schedule an opening, so he told me he could get to me the first or second week of June (normally you’d want to open the 3rd or 4th week of May, so you could get the water balanced before swimming weather in June). Since we liked him, we happily waited. And waited. He kept putting us off, until finally it was the last week of June, and he promised to be here on Wednesday, the 26th. No show. Then promised Saturday, and again, no show. Sunday I gave him the benefit of the doubt and assumed he’d be there in the afternoon. (I knew he was working weekends to try to catch up.) So I texted him as we left to go on a walk, telling him the back gates were unlocked for him.

Kurt sent me a breakup text, and told me he wished me ‘good luck’ finding someone else. There are 2 bigger pool companies in town, and one of them just pushed a local baker out of her bakery space to make more room for their patio furniture sales. Since she made our wedding cake and is loved around town, I refused to call them. I called the other guys, Ohana, on Monday, and they said they could be out Tuesday. They showed up perfectly on time and got to work. But shortly into the job, Xavier came to find me. It seems the bolt plug for the filter, and the plug for the heater, had both been broken/sheered off. The plug screws in, and works just like a bathtub plug. If it’s not there, water pours out of the filter, and floods the pool pump room. Which happened to the guy, as the broken plug had just been placed there, as though it were fine. Thankfully he was able to immediately turn the pump off so it didn’t flood too bad. Just a soaked concrete floor. He thinks Kurt, or his worker, broke them last year, and didn’t want to tell us, and that’s why he didn’t want to come back. What’s funny is the broken plugs cost about $2-4 each. Nothing expensive. But we can’t run the pump without them.

Xavier also found that the ladder back rubber feet were missing. They slide into the metal poles, to keep the metal from cutting a hole in the pool liner. He thinks Kurt or his assistant weren’t careful taking it out last year, and that they fell out, into the pool, and are on the bottom somewhere. Again, a cheap part at $3 each. We need the parts but it’s a holiday weekend. Jim was able to find a replacement for the filter, but not the heater. Since we don’t use the heater anyways, he attempted to bypass the heater by adjusting the pipes, but couldn’t find the right parts at Lowe’s, and he’s worried his work might not be right for a high pressure pool pump. So he called Ohana to come reroute the pipe themselves sometime next week. So we get to spend the holiday weekend looking a green-ish hole in the backyard.

Wish us luck…


A pool really is lovely for a family, but we turned down about 30% of the houses we looked at because they had pools. It is way too much money and maintenance for us, and as you said, finding good people is tough!

Hope you get to use it sometimes before fall hits! Fingers crossed!


We really didn’t want a pool, and while it might have been a selling point for some people, for us it was almost a deal breaker for this house. Honestly, the house is too big for a family of 3. But Jim needs a real (and comfortable) home office to work remotely. And with family visiting regularly, a guest room was a necessity. Everything we were finding was about a room too small. This house is basically a bonus-room too big. (Along with a too-big yard that we need to get professional help with next season.)

But since we have friends with lots of kids in town, family nearby, and we’ve always been the social hub for the friends group, it has come in handy to have a bigger space where lots of people can gather.


I totally get it! In this market, we had a choice of too small or too big! It is just the two of us and most of our family and friends live in the area. We saw so many nice homes with pools, but at our age, it was a deal breaker.

The house is bigger than we wanted or needed as well, but we were looking at function…we needed a separate place for Jim to play drums without disturbing the neighbors or me! And, we were quite specific about the neighborhood. I am still pinching myself that we lucked out!

The house is being cleaned today and all utilities are working. The painter comes tomorrow to do a few rooms we want right away. What a lot of work, but I am looking forward to the fun stuff now. I just hope everything fits in the semi truck the movers are bringing. I have over 60 boxes just for my crafting room plus 25 plastic bins!


Oof, Jennie, that’s a lot! It’s a real shame how our culture has seemed to shift towards not owning up to mistakes and just making it right. Years ago when I was a decorative painting contractor working on a multi-million dollar remodel with a bunch of other contractors I had to work after hours to do my thing unimpeded. I messed up some leveling that the tile contractor was doing, so immediately called the general to get the tile guy’s number, called him and found out it was fine. But the general and the tile guy acted like I was some kind of saint for just admitting my mistake and trying to rectify it. It was really quite sad.

Anyway, we’re finally replacing our old, poorly constructed (also ugly) deck! And pretty much doubling it’s size! We’re hiring the pros to (properly) build the understructure - like with concrete in the ground and everything. But we did the demo with help from a neighbor friend who has big equipment and I’ll be laying the decking and doing the railing.

It was not as rotten as it looks, except the railing which is not only rotten, but nowhere near any kind of code in more than one way.


In this shot, I’d already taken down one of the railings, so was using patio furniture to make sure no one walked over there.



Next the other railings and the hot tub came off.


Then I used a reciprocating saw to cut the stringers from the top so we could remove several rows of decking (as well as the support structure underneath) at a time. We did it in three sections with the help of our friend and his Bobcat with forks.

We piled it off to the side for me to de-construct later. I had thought I would more methodically deconstruct in order to save the materials for other, suitable projects and we were originally in the contractor’s schedule for early August, but their schedule opened up next week.


Over the next few days we’ll finish getting the last row of “add-on” deck removed and set aside the concrete pier pads - they’ll be reused for the new deck.

The new deck will be almost 20’ x 30’. (6m x 9m)


Some more progress today. We removed that last row of decking and the support beams under it, set aside all the concrete pier blocks, raked up pine duff.


I got to operate the front loader a tiny bit! I have driven it before when I helped the neighbor get out of the ditch in the snow a couple years ago, but here are the quick pics I got from my POV.

That’s me in the mirror!


Looking good! Lots of work but then you will have a really nice, safe place to enjoy your property and have cookouts!

I can’t believe what great friends we have in PA. We managed to snag a house painter during the busiest months. He is painting the interior of the house before we move in…well, at least the two most important rooms, my husband’s den and my craftroom and the ajoining baths. I just don’t feel safe standing on a ladder anymore, so sadly, all the rooms will probably be the same color, a nice neutral gray.

Looks like my renovations and home decor will be limited to furnishings, curtains, etc.
Can’t wait!


Thanks! We so excited to have what is basically 1/3 more living space on the main floor. We plan for heaters and eventually a retractable cover of some sort over part of it, so there is every chance that TheMisterT will be out there even in winter. We’re both sad that Delia won’t get to enjoy the new deck. She would’ve loved “roasting” in a sunbeam out there, rotating in and out of the shade, and probably enjoying the new furniture we’re planning to get.

Today, the materials for the understructure were delivered! Tomorrow morning the contractor starts. It’s going to be extra hot here for a few days, so we offered to let them start at 7:00. There are no ordinances regarding that here and we are up and working by then anyway.



They set it at the east side of the work area. Eep! It’s getting so real!



And now we have concrete footings! Mostly they had to be hand dug in our rocky, hard soil. They worked hard today. It was about 95F (35C) when they finished. They’ll be back day after tomorrow to deconstruct the original porch and start building. WOO!


They’re difficult to see in the dappled shade, but there are eight.



Such a great project!! :slight_smile:

1 Like