A Dining Room Becomes A Music Room: Curtains and Furniture

 

BEFORE:

Removing Wallpaper

AFTER:

Target Cube Organizer

The music studio is complete!  Last week, I moved some basic cube storage (from Target) into the room to hold music and teaching supplies.  I added a few light weight but comfortable leather chairs (found at T.J, Maxx a few years ago) for parents or students to sit on, and a neutral storage ottoman (found on clearance at Target) for additional seating and storage.  I’ve been teaching at home for almost a week now, and I absolutely love it.  Why didn’t I do this sooner?

You can find the gray storage bins here.  The ceiling light is from Home Depot, but not available online.  You can find a similar one here.

Nail Head Trim Cloth Bulletin Board

I love the bulletin board I purchased from FleurDeLizDecor on Etsy.  You can find it here.  I contemplated making my own for all of five seconds, then I remembered that I’m not crafty and have a 4-month-old who screams when he’s in his car seat running errands with me.  So, yes, I broke down and ordered the expensive bulletin board from the comfort of my computer chair.

Petrof Grand Piano, Agreeable Gray by Sherwin Williams

The piano move went smoothly, and it fits nicely in the room.  I was a little worried about the baby grand engulfing the room as it’s only 9.5×14′.

The wall color we chose is called Agreeable Gray by Sherwin Williams.  It’s such a livable neutral.  It has a green cast in all these pictures, which I’m not happy about, because it’s really a true gray-tan. I tried about 17 different shades of gray before settling on this one.  It’s so hard to find a gray without a purple, green or blue tone to it.

West Elm Curtains

I went with the Pinwheel Linen Curtains from West Elm- you can find them here.  I went extra long on the curtains, and hung the rod well above the windows to give a feeling of extra height to the room.  I love the way it looks!

Clear glass lamp and black shade are also Target finds.  I like how a black shade can dress up an ordinary lamp.  The aqua vase is a gift from my paternal Grandma, something she’s had displayed in her house for years and years.  It’s extra meaningful because she was my first and most influential piano teacher.

West Elm Curtains

I’m still looking for some art to add a pop of color to the room, thinking about something like this or this (can they mark it down to 95% off for me?).

A Dining Room Becomes A Music Room: Board and Batten

In the last post about the music room, this is where we left off- wallpaper, floor trim, carpet and chair rail was removed, and we were all set for the carpet to be laid.

Removing Wallpaper

We were amazed at how fast the carpet was laid.  In our old house, we had all wood or tile flooring, so this was our first experience with carpet.  Granted, this room is only 9.5×14′, but the carpet layer was in and out of our house in under an hour.  Years down the road, we may put wood flooring in this room, but for now, carpet meets our needs in this room best.  It’s cheap, didn’t require our time to install, and it’s pretty cozy, too!

Home Depot Millwork

We decided to add board and batten to the lower 4 feet of the walls.  We looked at several tutorials, but our favorite was this one from Young House Love.  What we liked best from YHL was how they just painted the wall with glossy white paint to resemble board, instead of putting board up all over the wall.  It saved us a lot of time and money.  Now that it’s done, you would never guess that our board and batten is really just batten.

We headed out to Home Depot one Saturday to get our supplies.  We grabbed 4 inch baseboard for the room.  It’s amazing how much change you notice in a room just by switching out the old 2 inch baseboard for 4 inch.  We decided to keep all of the window and door trim and just paint it bright white.  In this house, our motto is to make it look great while saving as much money and time as we can.  Painting, instead of removing, window and door trim, is one way we’re doing that.

Sawing at Home Depot

For the board across the top of the board and batten, we picked up some ordinary 1×3 pine boards that were primed white.  We had a lot of trouble finding battens that were inexpensive AND would give us the look we wanted.  We finally settled on these, 1-5/8″ Wood Primed Finger-Jointed Lattice Moulding.  We looked at Lowe’s and Mendards stores, but could only find these at Home Depot.  I promise Home Depot’s not paying me, I just love that store so much!

Baby Sleeping At Home Depot

Oh look, Hudson loves it too!  I was carrying him through the store, and all of the sudden he felt really heavy.  I looked over, and he was sound asleep.

Painting Window Trim

When we got home, Nathan painted the existing trim and the lowest 4 feet of the walls with glossy white paint.

Board and Batten In Process

After the paint dried, he put up the baseboard, and then the battens.  Since studs are typically 16 inches apart, we decided to place the battens 16 inches apart, so we could nail them right onto the studs.

I got Nathan this stud finder, and it’s awesome!  It’s basically just a strong magnet, and it finds the screws in the studs that were used to attach the sheets of drywall.

Board and Batten In Process

 

Board and Batten In Process

 Once all the battens were up, Nathan added the primed 1×3 pine board across the top.  In this picture, he’s trimming out the small doorway to the closet under our stairs.  Putting up the floor trim, the battens and the top board only took one Saturday afternoon.

IMG_2021Quilt from Little Sproutie

And, of course, no post could be complete without an update on baby Hudson.  At 27 inches and 16 pounds, he’s a 4-month-old giant.  His cheerful grins bring so much joy to our house!

The Dining Room Becomes A Music Studio: Wallpaper Removal

Last night, Nathan and I dug into our first remodeling project on the new house.  Since I’ll begin giving all my cello and piano lessons from home in mid-August, transforming this room is top priority.  After a long day, we were finally both home around 8:30 pm.  Hudson went down for the night.  Nathan and I quickly ate leftovers from the cookout we had over the weekend.  By quickly, I mean no-time-to-warm-them-in-the-microwave and just-sit-on-the-kitchen-counter-while-you-eat.  Needless to say, we weren’t all that thrilled about beginning our project so late.  We had to get it done last night because we’re having carpet laid today, and the piano is being delivered tomorrow.  Stressful is our style.

Removing Wallpaper

Here’s the before picture of the room, minus the cat-stained blue shag carpet we already tore out.  I’m sure you’re sad you missed seeing that.  By far, this is the yuckiest room in the house.  But, by far, this is a way easier remodel than our old house.  That was remodeling.  This is just peeling wallpaper, putting in a light fixture, taking out old trim, putting up board and batten, putting up new trim, having carpet laid, changing out the cream outlets/switches for white, and painting.  No big deal.

Removing Wallpaper

Here we are in the process of peeling off the wallpaper.  As you can see, the top layer of paper came off super easily.  I’ve peeled a lot of wallpaper and it never came off in big sheets like this.  The backing and glue were still on the wall after the top layer of paper was peeled off.

To remove the backing and glue, we tried using a clothes steamer, but that didn’t get it wet enough.  After that, we tried rubbing a mixture of water and dish soap into the backing with a towel, and it started to peel off, but in teeny-tiny bits.  Then, my genius husband brought in a grout sponge, and we rubbed the water/soap mixture into the paper backing with that.  It was magic.  I would wash a wall thoroughly, then Nathan would come behind a couple minutes later, and the backing would peel off in huge sheets.  This little sponge made all the difference-you can find one here for $1.97.

After the backing was removed, there was still the issue of the glue.  Again, with a towel, it was hard work, but removing it with the sponge was so easy!  I would wipe down a section, leave it for a minute while I wiped down another section, then come back and wipe the first section again.  That’s all it took!  From start to finish, this project took less than two hours, including sanding the walls where the chair-rail had been, and cleaning everything up.

Removing Wallpaper

 This is what the room looks like right now.  I can’t wait for the carpet layers to come today and cover up that nasty vinyl tile flooring!