Bathroom Plans & How To Strip Wallpaper (What Worked Best)

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Strike up the band! Fire the cannons! Attempt to twerk! Okay maybe not that last one, but whatever the appropriate celebratory action is, bust it out because our once very wallpapered house is officially wallpaper-less! And since we thought one last wallpaper removal post might be boring on its own, we saved that info and bulked it up with some other bathroom progress for you guys – namely… how we puttied, prepped, and primed the damaged walls how we primed & painted all of the cream trim and old wood quarter-round what paint plans we’ve landed on for this freshly de-wallpapered space (hint: we’re going to try to balance out the bold floor tiles with

Fab Freebie: Interior Domination

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By now you probably know that domino is back – and they have a whole integrated web shopping experience that makes it easy (this husband may contend a little too easy…) to bring the looks that you see on the pages of their magazine into your own house. So this week they’re giving someone $200 to spend at domino.com plus a one year’s subscription to the quarterly magazine.   Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a second to load, but it should eventually pop up below this paragraph). This giveaway is open to residents of the United States (but we have a worldwide prize all queued up for next week).

Fab Freebie: In Quotes

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The new year is all about finding the motivation to do / be / live / act / beatbox better, right? So we thought it was the perfect time for Silhouette Blue to give away a $250 gift certificate so you can stock up on stationery, wall art, calendars, notepads, and more (nearly all of which come in custom colors and can even be personalized). You’ll also score one of her charming Quote Jars, which come in 3 colors and are each stocked with 150 quotation notes to lift you up and inspire. Think of it as the fortune cookie that keeps on giving (but you probably shouldn’t bite into it). Please use the Rafflecopter

Using Polyshades To Darken Our Wood Cabinets

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Even though a household-wide cold got our 2014 off to a rocky (well, sneezy) start this week. We still managed to get our lower cabinets stained darker as planned. PS: Anyone remember this song? I had the whole album and kinda loved it. The change isn’t as dramatic as last week’s upper cabinet painting post, but as you can see below – we did achieve our goals of making them a slightly darker and less orange color while reducing (but not eliminating) the wood grain. The process took us about five days total, thanks to one day of prepping, one day of staining, one day of sanding and restaining, a full day of drying, and

Christmas Gifts & Other Good Stuff

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Today we’re wrapping up our annual pair of “Christmas present” posts (the first was yesterday’s rundown on what we made Clara) with this summary of what else we unwrapped and how we spent the day, like this one and this one of yore. Think of it as our way of trying to cling to the holiday season for one more day while answering all of those “what did you get each other?” and “what else did Clara get?” questions. Meanwhile, in quick kitchen update news, we’re knee-deep into staining the lower cabinets, which means the room is a complete disaster, but it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas progress. The doors/drawers/frames have been sanded,

Twenty Favs of Twenty-Thirteen

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2013 has been quite the year. It began with a book tour, mid-pointed with us moving into a new house, and ended with us finding out that we have a baby boy on the way. And in between there have been lots of projects, announcements, transformations, and other good stuff. So we thought we’d make our last post of the year a look back at our 20 favorites – from makeovers to personal moments – of the last 12 months. We fell off the “monthly superlative” train somewhere around our move, so we’re well overdue for a little retrospective anyways (cue the slow jazz). So here we go, in no particular order… #1 – Refacing

Fab Freebie: Monkey Business

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If your garage looks anything like ours at the moment, you’re in luck. Monkey Bar Storage is hooking someone up with over $1,000 worth of garage storage and organization solutions. In addition to eight feet of grid shelving and an assortment of hooks and hangers, you’ll also get to pick three specialty racks for whatever fits your storage needs – bikes? tools? skis? golf bags? Heck, at this rate you could even add “pick up a new hobby” next to “tame the garage” on your New Year’s Resolution list. Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a second to load, but it should eventually pop up below this paragraph). This giveaway

Painting Our Upper Cabinets White

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We’re soaking up a white Christmas over here! Nope, we didn’t wake up to any snow on the lawn, but there was a dusting of white elsewhere on the premises… We used last week to sand, prime, and paint all of our upper kitchen cabinets and – shocker – we ended up going with white. So yeah, it’s a little bit different from our original plan to paint them a light gray-tan on top… and a little more like what we did in our last kitchen – but just for those uppers. We have a completely different plan in store for the lowers – and it actually involves wood stain and no paint at all

Reader Redesign: Starry Night

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Hope you guys are having an awesome week-between-Christmas-and-New-Years. We’re soaking up some family time, along with sanding, priming, and painting our kitchen cabinets (it looks like a small paint bomb went off with some random gingerbread cookies among the fray), so we’re hoping to share our progress on Monday. But today we wanted to drop by with a makeover by Katy for her son Gabriel. This transformation was not only completed on a serious budget (she estimates that it was under $200, including big things like a bed and a dresser), it was also done in a rental (and we know you guys love to see those). Bravo to the landlord for letting her give

Fab Freebie: An iPad Stocking Stuffer

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We’re still surrounded by piles of wrapping paper, but we wanted to stop by with a special holiday giveaway for you guys. The prize? An iPad 2 along with a custom iPad cover from StickyGram! You may know StickyGram already from the cool magnets that they make for your Instagram photos, but they also create fun stuff like customized phone and iPad covers (the latter of which doubles as a stand). Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a second to load, but it should eventually pop up below this paragraph). This giveaway is available to residents of the United States (but we’ve got an international giveaway coming up right after

Our Annual Christmas Card

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Every year we like to drop in before everyone abandons their keyboards for Christmas (or have you already?) to share our Christmas card along with some gushy words of appreciation. So thar she blows: We had a few other ideas planned for our card this year (Clara gift-wrapping Burger, Clara riding her bike with a tiny Christmas tree on the back as Burger ran next to her, etc) but a combination of book deadlines, hospital decorating, showhouse meetings, and bad weather tied us up. Thank goodness for this shot that we miraculously got on the day that we told Clara she was going to have a little brother (I’ve filed it under “Christmas miracles”). And

Our Free Annual Calendar Download

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This time of year we tend to feel behind on just about everything: projects, emails, present wrapping, cleaning, proper hygiene… but by some miracle, we’re actually ahead in one department: making our homemade family calendar. As many of you know, for the last five years we’ve whipped up a simple-yet-colorful calendar in Photoshop. A few of you (like Lauren and Alexandra) have even asked if we had this year’s ready yet (since we like to share the customizable template, in case you need a last minute gift). So I’m relieved to exclaim “the deed is done!” It doesn’t usually serve as our note-riddled family calendar (that’s what Sherry’s desktop planner is for) but it’s more

Replacing A Hanging Microwave With A Range Hood

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Hood, there it is. Well actually, for the last couple of weeks it has been more of a “hood… there it isn’t” situation in our kitchen. You may remember that we removed our over-the-range microwave before painting the kitchen. It’s the only appliance we’ve planned to replace as part of our Phase 1 kitchen makeover, since it was so front & center in the room, it crowded our stove, and we always seem to prefer range hoods over microwaves with vents when it comes to performance. So we replaced it with a stainless countertop microwave (more on that here) which we’ll eventually get “installed” into our pantry for the long haul (even into Phase 2)

Fab Freebie: Tool Blizzard

Ryobi-Giveway

If your current tool collection could be described as “little to no accumulation” prepare yourself for the virtual snowstorm of power tools that may be coming your way. The good people of Ryobi are forecasting over $600 worth of tools this week. There’s a 10″ Sliding Compound Miter Saw. A Cordless Brad Nailer. And, best of all, a Ryobi ONE+ Ultimate Combo Kit that’s stocked with six tools (including 3 more saws!) that all work from the included 18V lithium ion battery. And if that doesn’t get your head spinning with ideas, there are plenty to get inspired by in the Ryobi Nation community – where you can enter to win even more tools. Please

Our Holiday Makeover Project At The Children’s Hospital

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Well, you can stick a candy cane in it, because one of our favorite seasonal projects ever is officially done! To recap, we were invited to help with a very special project: decorating a family waiting room at the Children’s Hospital of Richmond at VCU. They contacted us in the hopes that we could volunteer our time to warm up the room so it’s more cozy and homey year-round, as well as to add some festive touches for the holiday season. Not only did it sound like a fun project, it had such a deserving purpose that we couldn’t wait to get started. Here’s what it looked like when we first visited. We set our

Fab Freebie: Warm Wishes

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Well, the weather outside can be frightful this time of year, so staying curled up in a warm bed sounds pretty darn delightful (and it can be your everyday reality if you’re Burger). This week Crane & Canopy is making that temptation even harder to resist with a $250 gift card. They’ve got luxurious designer bedding – duvet covers, sheet sets, pillows, throws, etc – without the designer prices. So this gift card is an invitation to transform your bed with your pick of some colorful patterns, cozy textures, and even some intricate embroideries. Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a second to load, but it should eventually pop up

How To Replace Fluorescent Lighting With A Pendant Fixture

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This past week has been full of showhouse meetings and Children’s Hospital projects, but we also managed to knock three more bullets off our kitchen to-do list. We (1) patched, primed, and painted the old yellowed ceiling, (2) replaced the two fluorescent lights in the kitchen area, and (3) replaced the light over the breakfast table. So let’s kick things off with our favorite new view: Each light installation had its own little peculiarities, so I’ll dive into those before detailing the work that went into the ceiling. When it came to replacing the big fluorescent light, many of you asked for a step-by-step rundown (so you can tackle one of these beasts at home)

Baby Petersik is a….

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… HE! We haven’t done one of these posts since 2010, so it feels kind of strange and exciting to be sharing this kind of news with you guys again. We found out on Wednesday, and then scurried to tell our families over the last 48 hours. Of course, the most important person to tell first was Clara. We didn’t want her to learn the news from an ultrasound technician, so we scheduled a playdate for her with my dad during this particular appointment. Then when we were back together, we surprised her with a baby boy doll (which are surprisingly hard to find, we learned). It was a cute little “OK, look in the

Eleven Fun Holiday Upgrades For The Children’s Hospital

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It’s official. We’ve checked off 11 things and there are just seven more to go. Two weeks ago, we shared our Children’s Hospital makeover project with you guys, and this week things really got rolling. As in, we got to start actually installing the room. Holy holly jolly, Batman! The shot above is a sneak peek of the tree that we Instgrammed yesterday and, as annoying as sneak peeks are (we know, we know) the good news is that we’re 60% done with everything (woot!). And since many of you were asking what we’ve been up to in there, we thought it was a good time for an update on our progress. You know we

Fab Freebie: Art For Two

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Finding one-of-a-kind art that you love isn’t always easy, so we’re psyched about this week’s giveaway from ArtTwo50. They’ve got a virtual gallery full of tons of original art from over 500 artists ranging from abstracts and portraits to landscapes and beyond – all priced at $250 including shipping. While you can browse their art on their Pinterest page, the real fun starts when you download their free iPad app, which allows you to take a picture of your empty wall and virtually “try on” different pieces before making your selection. You can even post on social media to get feedback from your friends first. And speaking of friends, ArtTwo50 is giving away a $500

Full Nelson

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Another Monday, another leap forward for our kitchen. Here’s where we were last week, after priming and painting the trim, doors, crown molding, and paneling white. And here we are today, with the walls freshly coated with a little Nelson Blue (the light blue color that we’ve planned on from the start). Shall we all let out a communal sigh of relief that the walls aren’t covered in wallpaper anymore and there are no more spackle holes and raw drywall from under those cabinets that we removed? Together now. Ahhhhh. Update: There have been a few questions about the intercom and why we didn’t remove it yet, but we’re not sure if we’re going to

Painting The Ceiling A Little Darker (And Glossier)

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We’re doing Children’s Hospital stuff today, but a bunch of you noticed a foyer ceiling update in the background of yesterday’s post, so we owe you those details. We actually knocked it out before the big kitchen paint-fest, but that post cut the line because it was too exciting to save for later and we have the patience of toddlers (not to be confused with having the body of a baby). We usually hate painting ceilings (big rooms = sore backs) but the foyer’s a relatively small swatch of space, so I ended up just rolling the whole thing while Sherry knocked out some simple cutting in around the edges. Two coats later, we were

Fab Freebie: Farm Fresh

Antique-Farmhouse-Giveaway

On this Thanksgiving week, Antique Farm House is offering up some fun and festive goods. This sale site that was started by two sisters specializes in (you guessed it) farmhouse style decor and vintage reproductions. And you can grab them for up to 80% off retail prices during their sale events. Every day they announce new deals that epitomize the shabby chic and industrial vibe – from furniture and accessories to storage and tableware. And considering the prices, the $500 gift card that someone’s winning this week could go a long way… Please use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter (it might take a second to load, but it should eventually pop up below this

A Little Holiday Excitement

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Heads up: this post might be a bit of a smorgasbord. I think it’s because life has been feeling kinda smorgasbordy lately (in a good way) and sometimes it’s hard to organize life into tidy, tightly-themed blog posts when it’s really all over the place behind the scenes… I say it’s “in a good way” because we feel like we’re really starting to gain momentum around a goal that we mentioned in this post of taking on more “off-campus” projects. In other words, projects that aren’t centered solely around improving our own spaces and, in more than one case, are for a good cause. The Homearama Showhouse that we’re doing for Habitat For Humanity, being