let there be light

Pouf and Fixture

The father-in-law was here, the father-in-law was here! Easter weekend was spent with my in-laws at our house. They were nice enough to fly down for the extended weekend and help us with some house projects!

In Action

The husband and my father-in-law spent time switching out FOUR fixtures, two receptacles, and fixed a toilet! It was so motivating to have them here; it made me want to do even more!

The first fixture in the dining room was probably the hardest. They had to head up to the attic because I wanted them to place a fixture directly above the dining table and get rid of the center chandelier in the middle of the room. Now the space serves as both a living room and dining room instead of one big dining room. Below you can see the old chandelier in the middle of the room, reflected in the mirror.

Full Dining

I chose a 3-jar chandelier I got from West Elm (go figure). It worked perfect in the space. It doesn’t look too formal for the table, and I’m so pleased with the size!

Dining Room After Fixture

Dining Side view - Fixture

Then, the pair moved on to the kitchen. In our little kitchen nook, there was a big ceiling fan, which was nice, but I want the space to have a more structured spot for eating and entertaining. Plus the big ceiling fan wasn’t that aesthetically pleasing.

kitchen light - before

I decided on Ballard‘s Eldridge Pendant. I kept the existing placement of the electrical box (the guys were happy about that) but had them swing the chain to center the light over our little farm table. At first, I was a little nervous I got too big of a fixture for such a small space, but as I look at it daily, it really works with the space.

Kitchen Light

If that wasn’t enough, they moved to the nursery. There was a very dated fan in the nursery that needed to go!! I wanted some sort of chandlier or pendant for this space depending on if it was a girl or a boy. With a boy in my belly, I went with Serena & Lily‘s Birds Nest Hanging Pendant which my father-in-law affectionately called the waste basket. Here’s the before picture of the nursery.

Nursery w:Fan

And the nursery light after! I’m in love with the nursery light, and at night it makes a wonderful design on the ceiling! Again, I was worried about how big it was for the space but it worked perfectly! I absolutely love it! I think it looks a little more boy-oriented and again love the wooden look that accents the wood on the crib and the woods on the dresser!

Nursery Final

Lastly, we used our white kitchen fan to replace the current light in the guest room. The guest room had a fluorescent light in the room from the previous owners who used the space as an office.

guest room - office

All I had to do was clean up the fan, and I bought four new light globes for the fan to make it a little more modern. It felt good to reuse the light and get the old nasty fluorescent out!

Guest Room - Fan

It’s absolutely awesome to have that all off the to do list and all those lights off the ground and in there spots! I’m so thankful no one electrocuted themselves or fell through the ceiling! A big thanks to the husband and father-in-law for your extended efforts and work throughout the weekend!

dining room

Full DiningOur dining room feels a little like a real dining room since the addition of chairs thoughout theses last weeks. I know I talked about a couple of different options in this post and wanted you to see the completed collection.

Side Dining

We matched our bench with the table and went a little different with the high-back West Elm chair in elephant leather. I love them and think they are rather comfortable, too. FYI, if you want anything from West Elm, Crate & Barrel, Pottery Barn, I suggest getting on their email list. They have weekly specials and if you’re patient, your item will come up 15-30% off. I never pay sticker price for these big ticket items.

Table Top 1On the other side of the bench, we found these two Village Grigio side chairs at Crate & Barrel in a clearance section of their floor models. We bought them both with cushions for cheaper than we could buy one chair without a cushion new! I was in. It matched the elephant leather of the West Elm chairs, and if I didn’t like them, I wasn’t all in with a high price tag! Score. Luckily, they worked perfectly.

Table Top 2

The center piece is a collection of old and new things. My white everyday side plates, a french wine bottle from The Whimsey Shoppe, the birds were from an estate sale (my favorite past time), and the table runner is from Pottery Barn which I purchased for $9.00. What can I say, I like love a deal! One of my girlfriends actually got this same table runner as a bridal shower gift the other weekend, and I was in love with it! It’s subtle but works well in the space!

Bench Dining

I think the whole space looks wonderful, and I can’t wait for my father-in-law to come down and help the hubs put a little light on my beautiful subject! I’ll keep you posted!

windows!!

Cover WindowsWe did one of the biggest impact additions to our house to-date! I have to thank my husband for pushing this decision. I wasn’t convinced we needed them. Windows that is. I thought we could live with towels around our windows, the inability to open most of them, and a huge crack in the nursery window. Yes, I’m serious! We have plantation shutters in most of them that doesn’t show a thing, so who cares if you can’t open them? Plus, windows can get pretty, pretty pricey.

With that, we had a home consultation with a couple of companies, talked to neighbors, friends, and family to hear their input and finally pulled the trigger. I was still hesitant with this decision, but we moved forward.

Construction

Because we aren’t sure if we’re going to live in this house forever, we didn’t go with the highest-of-high end windows but also didn’t pick the dirt cheap ones either. We went with Home Depot’s higher end brand Simonton windows which have a life-time warranty. Even if our baby boy’s aim isn’t as good as his father’s or papa’s, we won’t have to pay for a broken window. Pretty nice.

First window in!

Guest Interior Window

We also decided to put panels in the windows that matched our backdoor. I was a complete wreck about this decision, because it added to the cost ($100+/each), and I couldn’t uninstall the windows if I didn’t like them. But I knew any panels were better than none, and it add to a classic rich look that people like, and I love. Plus, it’s a nod to my love for Frank Lloyd Wright and his prairie style.

2nd Window

Interior look

I don’t know if it shows up on these photo (mostly from my phone) but trust me they look beautiful in person. I love being able to turn the thermostat down and open up the whole home on these wonderful spring nights. I thank my husband for pushing this desicion.

Before and After Windows

They are beautiful, and we could not be more pleased with the service and look of our windows!

dining table

Dining Table

We went mainstream on our dining table…. Yep, feel like I sold out. BUT all the people, places, and websites we visited that had or made dining tables, we just weren’t impressed. They just didn’t fit our style or well, looked too cheap or too rustic for the space. We kept going back to this one at Pottery Barn.

Our gift to each other for Christmas this year was a couple pieces of furniture, so we finally pulled the trigger on this piece after months of back-and-forth. It’s light wax pine makes a fun contrast to our dark hardwood floors, and we feel with kids (someday) in our future, it will be durable. It’s dull enough that the scratches we put on it won’t really change the look like a shiny gloss finish would. We actually (encouraged by the manager) took a fork to the table at the store to make sure it would hold up or at lease add to the rustic feel.

Dining table top

detail table end

detail dining table

I’m already getting excited for the table centerpieces and have visions throughout the year of fun collections!

Dining CenterpieceOur plan is to buy the matching bench, and I need to find some fun end chairs and two other dining chairs. These are the ideas I have in mind but nothing is set in stone.

PB Bench

PB Bench

West elm high back (for the head of the table).

WE Chairs

West Elm

Mid century modern – idea for chairs opposite the bench.

Hvidt Dining Chairs

I’m just really pleased to look out from our galley kitchen and see a dining table in there. I’m excited to sew table runners for seasons to come and hopefully have our families down to share a holiday together! Thanksgiving 2013?!? Maybe!! ;) Plus, this chalks off another 33 before I’m 33! Yay!