weekend update: mini-makeovers

this past weekend was full of small triumphs around the house.

first off: the front porch. i finally put out the housewarming gift dave and lauren got us. it is an adorable welcome mat from patina. my mom and i went to costco and she bought us this fantasticly huge plant. so they went up on the front porch. i know this is kind of like lipstick on a pig, but it brightened up our entryway significantly (even if the only person who notices is the postman).

before:


after:

to quote from clueless, "not a totally betty, but a vast improvement."

here's another small update:



(please excuse the sawdust.) i love the knobs. they add a great sheen to the kitchen that makes me really excited for shiny new appliances.

and finally, we painted the mudroom a lovely shade of gray. it was actually called "dorian gray" from sherwin williams. they had funny names. a close shade was even called "intellectual gray." i want that job: naming paint colors. we also installed a light fixture because we have our final electrical inspection coming up. we decided that the fixture wasn't bright enough, but we'll keep it up for the inspection and then change it out.

before (note the sad little light bulb):


after (note the sad lack of doorknob):


i think it will look awesome with crisp white trim. the doors will be painted a color to keep them from looking filthy; i'm just not quite sure which color yet.

this weekend involves a paint project in the half bath with a special guest. i'll post pics when it is finished!

the finishing touches

we got our sliding glass door and windows installed yesterday. what a huge difference! but because i can't find my camera at the moment, this post is going to be about things on the internet. :)

the last few weeks have been a whirlwind of things to pick out. to be honest, sometimes i suffer from the problem of too many options. i second-guess myself and wonder if there is something out there i would like better. so ben has been reassuring me that we are making the right choices.

here's what we went with for cabinet hardware. the cup pulls are for the drawers. i like how they are kind of old-fashioned in style, but with an updated finish. they are sturdy, too! the knobs are super basic. nothing fancy.
ben likes the oil-rubbed bronze finish on knobs, but i like anything silvery. we compromised and decided to get oil-rubbed hardware for the front door. i feel like every decision we make reminds me of how different our tastes are. but he's been really easy to work with on this. it's been a blessing.

hmmm...what else. we picked out our kitchen sink last night! after i stalled for weeks and weeks, we finally just went and bought one at home depot. one thing ben and i could agree on was that we both love apron sinks, like this:

i was so excited that we agreed! however, the more we researched, we found out that they are kind of risky. first, they are super expensive. the one above is like $1,150. second, you have to have a special under-sink cabinet made, and your countertops are also designed around the sink shape. apparently, no two apron sinks are exactly the same, so it posed a problem if anything were to happen to the original. (i have been trying to think worst-case scenario for all these decisions: what happens if it breaks, etc.) so the apron sink was out.

i personally like the undermount sink, but ben vetoed those. so, we consulted consumer reports (which we have been using a lot lately, and i highly recommend!) and found that cast-iron, enamel sinks are highly rated. so that is what we got. they are a standard size, so easy to replace if need be. i wanted one big sink, but my mom and mom-in-law convinced me that i would want a sink with a divider. so when i saw this one at home depot with a low divider for soaking pans, i was sold.

it's simple. nothing special, but i think we'll be happy with it. at 10% off and $225, it was a good value.

finally, we picked out our paint for the kitchen. this is a really big deal. ben doesn't like the all-white kitchens that i do, so with white cabinets and white countertops already ordered, we needed something with a lot of contrast. i'm not gonna say what color it is until i post pictures, but it satisfies my need for something graphic and crisp, and hopefully ben's desire for something warm (not a sterile, modern kitchen).

i did get a sample of it last night and painted a few patches on the walls. i wanted to see what it looked like in natural light and at different times of the day. it looked a little light in the bucket, but when it dried, i was totally sold. ben is happy, too, so i'm happy.

so tonight, we prime the walls. then, this weekend, we paint!