Monday, April 30, 2012

Dining Room Plate Wall

Hey there, hope you all had great weekends. Man I don't know about you but I am just chugging along with this whole "no more blank wall" business. I'm hanging art left and right and it feels good. The next room I tackled? Our blank dining room walls.

My inspiration for a plate wall came after seriously debating what to do on these walls for months. Guys, I had a reaaally hard time deciding on something to put on these walls I was almost paralyzed with indicision. Do I go classic/timeless with gilded perfectly symmetrical frames? Do I go funky with a collage wall of different frames? Same frames? Two long rectangular frames? Bookshelves? How will these work with the living room directly across and what do I do on those walls that won't be too matchy-matchy but still complimentary? Aahhh!

At some point I just sucked it up and realized it would be better to put something there and change my mind later on than to do nothing at all. And of course, lots of Pinterest browsing helped, specifically these two lovely rooms:

And with that my idea became a reality. Now all I needed was a whole mess of random plates and I knew exactly where to get them-- the same place I scored my awesome campaign dresser. This place has more dishes than I could ever sift through but luckily I found what I needed in about twenty minutes. This crappy phone picture doesn't even do it justice but every single shelf is stuffed to the brim with plates and cups and bowls. Perfect for what I was looking for and what's even better is that most of the dishes I got were about 50¢ each.

With my plates washed and dried I set about deciding on a pattern for the wall and then numbered them on a piece of masking tape so they would easily be transfered. (Plate number 5 is from Target)

One of my plates is not actually ceramic but this sweet little incredibly tarnished silver dish that took a couple coats of primer and white paint to fit in with the rest.

When figuring out how I would attach the plates to the walls I assumed I would use these Disc hangers that I've seen everywhere in the blog world. But after wandering around Lowes for too long I did a little Googling and found out that they are only sold online and/or at The Container Store which is no where near me. Bummed I had to figure out some other solution to hang my plates. Lowes did have traditional wire plate hangers but at about $3/4 a pop I didn't want to spend that nor did I like the look of wire hangers showing from the front. My options weren't looking too good.


In a moment of dire resourcefulness I rechecked the "hooks and hangers" section and saw these adhesive cloth hook hangers. The directions tell you to moisten the back with a little warm water and stick to the wall, allow time to dry, then you can hang things from the hook. I wondered if I could tweak things just a bit and attach the adhesive side to my plates and trim off the hook, leaving an eyelet to hang the plate on the nail. At $1.50 for a box of five I took a chance and bought three boxes. If it flopped I could always order the Discs online (which start at $1.25 each).

I tried the hanger out on one plate, allowed about a half hour to dry, and saw that they were incredibly sturdy. So I attached them to all the plates and allowed about an hour to dry. In the meantime I cut paper plates to use as templates and tried out my pattern on the wall. It was love. It was the perfect mix of classic and fun.

Now to keep you from scrolling back here's where we started Before:

And After!

Of course I had to have a little fun setting the table and putting out some of our gorgeous white azaleas.

Dining room walls: check! I'm also happy to report that three moons have passed (three moons have passed!) since these plates went up and they're all holding strong.

P.S. In case you're wondering where I bought the plates it's called Englishtown Antiques and I just discovered that Apartment Therapy did a piece on them back in 2009 that describes the place perfectly! Pretty cool.

P.P.S. Any other New Girl fans out there? Since we don't have cable TV we just watch a couple shows online, New Girl being one of them, and our newest favorite: Shark Tank.

Friday, April 27, 2012

It's A...!

...azalea bush! My instincts were correct when I rightly guessed the identity of our unknown front bushes.

We even have a cute little red one as well. Our hostas even popped up around the perimeter but let's be honest- this landscape is pretty sad. Especially when you look at the other side.

Yeah, a whole lotta nothing. Our evergreen tree also needs to be pruned because it's hiding our gorgeous pink dogwood! Aaand our yard is covered in "helicopters." It's on the list for the weekend.

Have a great one!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Getting The Hang Of It

I've been on a mission to tackle our bare walls for quite a few months now and I am happy to say I've been making some progress. After hanging art in the bathroom, guest room, and kitchen I've moved on to the most daunting room for me: the living room. Something about all those bare walls and all the options out there for what to put on them (hello Pinterest) is quite overwhelming. The same goes for the dining room but I've actually got something up my sleeve for that...

But back to the living room. I made a little progress a few weeks ago with the addition of a mirror above our TV console and with that I was headed in the right direction. If you don't remember, we have a pair of floating shelves that were supposed to be used in the kitchen until we nixed the idea and went with a plate rack instead. Enter said floating shelves and we now have a lovely addition to our living room walls that cost us nothing.

First off I took a couple strips of masking tape and marked the walls where I wanted the shelves to be:

Then I used some paper to mark the approximate height to fit a frame and make sure my tape was far enough apart. Woohoo. It was.

Then it was as easy as hanging the shelves and finding some things to put on them! A couple random items and frames I had at hand worked well enough but I foresee this corner going through more changes than a thirteen year old girl.

Yeah, we're getting there. One step at a time.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Even Smaller, Even Cooler

More entries have been added to Apartment Therapy's Small, Cool contest and they just keep getting better. Here's what caught my eye:

Do you see that kitchen? In the nook? Crazytown.

Any favorites so far?

Friday, April 20, 2012

Friday Finds...for real

Hey guys. So ya know how a couple weeks ago I said I was taking part in a Friday Finds series? Well some wires got crossed and I'm actually posting today! Head on over to Oak Ridge Revival to read about one of my all time favorite finds.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Our House: Spring

The amazzing weather this weekend drew me outside and I took the opportunity to snap a few shots of our house in its first Spring (since we've owned it).

One of the really fun parts about moving into our house in the late summer is that we don't really know what kind of plant life we have going on. Take these bushes by our front porch for example:

I'm not positive what they are but I do know there are three of them and they're sprouting the cutest little white buds! I'm thinking maybe azaleas? In front of them is a little bush with pink buds surrounded by some sort of ground cover-- hostas? I guess I'll know in just a few more weeks.

Our pink dogwood is also in full bloom and I can't tell you how happy those lovely little pink flowers make me. I'll definitely be sad once all the spring flowers are gone but we do have the hydrangeas in the back to tide me over during the summer. 
Are all your plants in bloom?

Monday, April 16, 2012

The Dining Room

I've been meaning to show you guys the updates to our dining room for a while now but the room was kind of over-run with random items that had no other place to go. After sorting through all the nonsense I was left with a nice blank slate that has come a long way yet still needs quite a few finishing touches.

Right after move-in back in late July the room looked like this with tons of unpacking left to do and walls that were half painted:

About a month after that the room calmed down just a tad, the painting was finished, but things were still very unfinished:

Around Christmastime the floors were finally finished, some decor was up to make things cozy, but the old white chairs were still in need of replacements.

Now eight months in to the new house, here's how the dining room looks today:

You can see where our "entry way" is in relation to the dining room. Once you walk in the front door you step immediately into the dining room.

Here you can see the doorless coat closet (soon to be remedied, fingers-crossed) and our staircase.

And the view from the kitchen.

So there ya have it. The curtains were made in the same fashion as our living room curtains (yes, that means they're sheets) and are just a shade darker which helps tie the two rooms together without being totally matchy-matchy. As you can see our walls are still totally blank so some artwork is definitely in order. We'd also like to replace the chandelier (not really our style) and figure out what to do with the far wall. I'm thinking I'd like to find a bar cart so I brought up an old kitchen cart we've had for a while and tried it out to see if I would like it.

I like the idea of something there but the shape and color aren't working for me. I think when we get a new chandelier I'll nix the standing lamp and have two table lamps beside the far window. Sound good to you? Either way I'll continue to keep my eyes peeled for some great deals.

(So after I typed this all up and scheduled it to post today I saw that Thrifty Decor Chick was hosting a dining room link-up party-- what are the odds? So head on over there if you wanna see even more dining room goodness.)

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