Happy New Year, everyone! When I gave you the before house tour on the blog, my first thought was "oh dang. Now I have to finish a room to have an after."
The house has been a constant work in progress since I moved in. I'm pretty proud of what I've gotten done so far, I just never feel like anything is really totally finished or perfect. But honestly, I don't know that I ever will. I'll always be moving things around as a find new treasures, or switching things up and going for a slightly different style. Andy really loves this about me - he tells me all the time how much he's looking forward to hauling yet another load of stuff and rearranging more furniture. Really.
But with this in mind, I decided it would be good to show you my entryway exactly as it is right now. There are still a few spaces I want something for, or pieces I'll switch out, oh, and it's still decorated for Christmas (I'll get the stuff down before February - I promise!).
As a reminder, here's how it looked bare bones in the listing pictures.
Now here's the after:
I found the midcentury buffet on craigslist for around $100. The wood veneer was pretty rough, but some primer and green-gray paint cleaned it up and made it look a lot more modern. The drawers provide great storage space, and the top gives me a lot of styling flexibility season-to-season.
For Christmas, it was the perfect place to display my very favorite decoration, my nativity set. I wanted to layer something on top of my large marble canvas print, and Hobby Lobby had chalkboards on sale, so I decided to hand-letter the silent night sign. The tray and bowl are perfect for dropping sunglasses, and giving a little shine to the space.
I never seem to take the extra time to hang a coat in the closet, so Andy helped me build this shelf with hooks for bags and a coat. I'm really happy with the way it looks, but it was so easy to put together. We just glued then screwed two 1"x8" pre-finished boards together, anchored it to the wall, then added a pre-cut piece of trim and the hardware.
Most benches were too wide to fit well in the entry, so I was thrilled when I found an old church pew on craigslist, and my wonderful Dad was able to refinish it with a LOT of sanding, and some gel stain. I have a big basket from Target at the end of the pew as an easy spot to throw small items like hats and mittens and scarves that would just clutter up other spaces or get scattered around.
The biggest and toughest projects in this fairly small space are also the ones that made the most impact. Here's a decorating spoiler alert for you: rugs are expensive. Most of the time, they're STUPID expensive. Like, it's actually tempting to make your own rugs out of rags expensive. BUT, every now and then a little luck and elbow grease can get you something awesome.
I found a cheap dhurrie rug on sale at esalerugs.com in some pretty awful colors. A cream rug with light pinks, blues, and green isn't exactly my jam, but it's nothing a little Rit Dye couldn't take care of!
I wish you all could have seen Andy's face when I told him I wanted him to help me dye and wring out a 12'x2' rug in the backyard in 45 degree weather. I'm sure our neighbors made similar faces trying to figure out what the heck we were doing...but like I said before, rugs are expensive, so this was worth it. We dyed the red and cream rug with navy blue dye, and it came out looking much more rich with blue and burgundy tones. SCORE!
The closet had wood veneer hollow core builder grade doors that I just thought looked cheap in the space. I took inspiration from the AMAZING Jenny Komenda of Little Green Notebook and decided to add some paint, textural fabric, paneling made foam core trim, and some new hardware. All those miter cut corners and getting the fabric smooth was a bit of a challenge, but I'm thrilled with how it turned out, and how it added a little glam to the space.
Getting the look of a pulled together entryway took a fair amount of DIY work, and a little craigslist luck, but it was totally possible on a budget. If there are any projects you want more details on let me know.