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Randy and I thought it would be fun to share some of our house projects we’ve been working on for the last few months. Okay, well really we just wanted someone other than ourselves to critique our hard work! A pat on the back perhaps? A gold star sticker? Mmm, asking too much? Okay, well how about this: if you are in the mood to re-work old furniture pieces or redesign a space, then perhaps this post can provide a bit of creative inspiration? Ehhh, perhaps that’s asking too much as well :)

Anyway, our projects were: backyard, kitchen dinette area, dining room and living room (these projects then resulted in the slight redesign of our office space as well). I’ll try to note anything that might be of interest in any of the following images….

We had three blank walls in our backyard. Since we’re renters, we didn’t want to do anything too permanent.

So we built two long planters and planted Equisetum Horsetail Reeds…

… and built a larger palette piece for our back wall. Cheap and effective!

(All pots from IKEA.)

And what would a backyard be without a patio palette table?

We used 1 1/2″ galvanized steel piping for the legs, and the chairs are from IKEA.

Here is a view of the backyard in the midst of our various projects. Next up, furniture painting!

We had some old furniture pieces that were in perfectly good condition, but simply didn’t fit our style anymore. We couldn’t justify getting rid of them, so we decided to paint them. This coffee table used to be dark faux-wood (from IKEA). (Please note our high-tech painting booth!)

We got this tv stand (or in our case printer/scanner stand) on Craigstlist and had to gave it a fresh coat of paint as well (changed the colors from cream & navy to white & orange).

The lighter color coffee table helps liven up the living room!

A view of our new couch. If you don’t know of Sofa Craft, then you don’t know what your missing! Custom build your own couch! The side table is from IKEA and the lamp is from good ole Target :)

Side note: Here’s our fabulous intern’s new space in the office. The desk and filing cabinet are from IKEA (never underestimate the power of the Swedes!)

We thought long and hard about what kind of dining room table we wanted. With a little one on the way, we knew we wanted something durable!

So we got a slab of unfinished kitchen countertop wood from IKEA and slapped on 2″ galvanized steel piping legs. Let me tell you, this thing is STURDY. Plus, the countertop turned tabletop will welcome the destructive hands of children and (hopefully) any nicks and scratches will only add more character to the surface :)

By the way, if you decide to build anything out of piping, the most expensive part of your endeavor will undoubtably be the flanges (seen here at the base of the leg.) But hey, they’ll last you forever!

Chandelier from Pottery Barn.

In the corner of our dining space we built a simple plywood shelf piece.

Yes, we like piping. Makes for great curtain restrainers! (Curtains from – you guessed it – IKEA!)

The bookshelf on the left used to be a dark, dark brown (from Target). Moving onto the dinette, this metal cart (sold at IKEA) is usually $160. We found it on Craigslist for $60!

Truth be told, we picked up this table from the Pasadena Flea Market with the intention of removing the top and using the legs for the base of our dining room table. But we changed our minds :) Love the vintage feeling it adds to the house!

So there ya have it! I can finally say our house feels like a home now. We were determined to take the time now (before our son arrives) to get everything looking the way we always wanted it… and then he can ruin it all upon his arrival :) But we did build everything with him in mind, and no single piece is so costly that I’ll be heartbroken if it gets scratched or ruined. The longest process in this home makeover was making up our minds – we had way too many ideas! But building, painting and finding the pieces really didn’t take much time (or skill).

So here’s to creativity, in all of it’s forms!

– She

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