Building a Home, Coldspring, collecting, Country living, Country Style, vintage style

Using Pinterest and Google Inspiration Boards

When you have been planning a project for 8 years you tend to collect a lot of stuff and ideas.

I have had a Guest Shed Pinterest board going a long time (7 years) and if you look at it, you will see that my ideas for the house changed dramatically over time. I love Pinterest. In 2017 I wrote a blog post with my plans for the cottage. A lot has changed because reality set in. At first I thought we would go with a total mid century vibe when I thought the roofline of the building would stay the same, the bathroom would be at the back, and the wood burning stove would stay. It felt low slung and sort of 50’s mid century modern look.

After deciding that we would raise the roof (it was less than 8 feet in about a third of the house so wouldn’t count as square footage on an appraisal) I really took a look at what I wanted, what I gravitate towards, and what items are special to me. When you have years you can finally come to he point where you really are honest with yourself. My husband did an awesome job designing the new roof joist structure so that the electrical for the can lights and ceiling fan run through the collar ties connecting the beams at the top of the ceiling. He had a total vision for what it would look like. I did not.

I realized as I looked though my stash of things collected that I had a lot of sentimental vintage items, antique furniture, and more of a time worn vintage look. Most of my collected things have a story.

I returned to my Pinterest board, and started collecting pictures from pins on Google Sheets. Google Sheets work a lot like PowerPoint but it is free to anyone who has a Google account and they are so easy to share with people who can work on them with you in real time.

The results were that even though our house doesn’t look exactly like the inspiration pages, it has the same feel. I did not link the photos or give credit to the creators but the original information is probably on my Pinterest page if you are interested in something you see.

I added notes to remind myself what I was shooting for but I shared this one with a friend so there is more detail.
I still love my sweet little kitchenette.
I really had to look to see the beauty in this tub but it turned out great!
The vanity turned out better than I hoped. The vintage sink I thought I wanted would have been too small to be useful.
This is the paint I chose and the wall where the kitchen and front door are located in glorious v groove wood salvaged from a home remodel and given to us. I love the look.
I did end up painting the cabinet red and did not use the sewing cabinet in the cottage.

As I look back at my notes I see that even though there were changes as we moved forward with the build from these inspiration boards the cottage still has the look I was going for. It feels like going back to my great grandma’s house but with air conditioning!

Thank you for following along on our journey.

We love hearing from you.

Blessings,

Karen

Coldspring, family, Texas, the guest room, vintage style

Beds in the Cottage

When we decided to make the cottage a place to sleep in overnight we thought about bed sizes and I perused a lot of Air BnB suggestions on Pinterest. (They are a great resource for how to make a guest home work for guests.) We are a really tall family so that factored into the plans. We considered a Murphy bed but the largest they come in is queen and we thought a king would be our best choice. By the way, if you want a room to have lots of functions and a queen, double or twin work for you, Murphy beds are awesome. We installed one in our back bedroom it was a lot of work but we love that we have a comfortable bed or a work/craft space.

Also, I want to be able to use the cottage for more than just a place to sleep. Just this Saturday there was an impromptu dance recital performance by two of my granddaughters that required things to be moved against the wall so the room would be more open. (They were magnificent by the way!). I can see using the space for baby/wedding showers, birthdays, game nights etc. so I didn’t want a quarter of the space to be taken up all the time.

I discovered searching online that there are bed frames that can be bolted and unbolted together and there is a strap and filler made just for the purpose of making two twins a king. That sealed the deal for us. Two twin xl beds were going to be in our future.

I shopped marketplace and found two mattresses and box springs used to stage a home. The guy that bought them thought they could be returned once the house sold but they got a little scuffed on one end moving them in. They were brand new expensive mattresses. I bet he wished he had hired a stager instead of trying to work the system but his loss, our gain. The still wrapped in plastic box springs were donated to Restore. A friend gave us a king sized bed topper that will make it even better.

We now can configure the room several ways.

Daybeds in the corner (this is how it looks most of the time).

Side by side twin beds

King bed

The night stands were once a vanity table that had been left in a garage for years. I love how cutting it in two, removing the peeling veneer, and painting the body made the furniture useful again.

We are ready for company. Flushing potty, hot water, beds, and most importantly air conditioning!

We love hearing from you.

Blessings,

Karen

bathroom, Building a Home, Coldspring, DIY, guest house, Real Life, Texas, vintage style

The Inside of the Guest House is Finished

Finally, finally, finally we have finished inside of the guest house. It was a project that we will enjoy for years to come and will increase the property value but man it was hard. I don’t recommend 60 years olds to take on this type project in the middle of a pandemic with supply chain issues and a shortage of contractors. Seriously.

We still have the porch ceiling to finish, erosion control, septic for the toilet (but it is happening this week!) and landscaping. It no longer stresses me to walk into the building knowing what we still have to do. Now I just get to enjoy being there.

I am going to link all the projects we have done here, mainly for myself, but if you haven’t followed along it might be something you want to check out. I apologize in advance for all the links!

https://theweekendcountrygirl.com/2021/04/01/progress-sort-of/

https://theweekendcountrygirl.com/2021/04/09/weekly-update-on-the-guest-house/

https://theweekendcountrygirl.com/2021/04/16/week-2-update/

https://theweekendcountrygirl.com/2021/05/02/the-struggle-is-real-remodeling-a-home-is-hard-right-now/

https://theweekendcountrygirl.com/2021/07/26/finally-an-update-on-the-guest-cottage/

*** If you are only going to look at one, this one has a good overview https://theweekendcountrygirl.com/2021/07/30/learning-to-love-the-imperfections/

https://theweekendcountrygirl.com/2021/08/02/why-we-hired-a-pro-for-the-tub/

https://theweekendcountrygirl.com/2021/08/04/installing-a-vintage-kitchen-cabinet/

https://theweekendcountrygirl.com/2022/02/12/a-bathroom-vanity-from-scraps/

We now have a functioning 464 square foot house that has the ability to sleep 4. We have on demand hot water, air conditioning, a six foot antique claw foot tub, a 1935 kitchen sink, hardwood floors and a peaceful front porch.

We added these canvas prints of the gust house to remind us how far we have come.

The twin xl beds can be bolted together to create a king and a very cushy topper makes it more comfy than our bed.

Thanks for following along on this year+ long journey.

We love hearing from you.

Blessings,

Karen

bathroom, Coldspring, guest house, Roadside Rescue, vintage style

A Bathroom Vanity From Scraps

We are nearing the end of putting together the bathroom in the guest house! Hooray! At this point I think we have spent about $3,500 on everything that went into turning a covered porch area into a functioning bathroom. Concrete, framing, Sheetrock, electrical, plumbing, window, lighting, tile, pocket door, tub, tub refinishing, and toilet all added up. We have done most of the work ourselves, except the terrible Sheetrock job and exterior siding. I am ever so thankful for a hard working husband.

One thing we didn’t spend much money on was our bathroom vanity thanks to recycling things we already had and materials given to or collected by us. We literally only purchased paint, the water connects, and the drain pipe for this project.

In my mind I wanted a black vanity with a white top. On a trip to Hot Springs, Arkansas I saw an antique porcelain legged vanity that I loved in a restaurant bathroom. A quick look online convinced me that the option may be out of reach. I was disappointed but I had so many other things in the bathroom that I loved, an inexpensive vanity would have been fine.

With my heart set on something white and black to go with our floor meant we had to get creative. In our stash of treasures I spotted a white vanity top that my buddy The Social Planner had given me ( I have great friends) and a grooved wood cornice board from the front window of our house that would work for the skirt. I had lots of legs I thought would work, but it sort of felt like Goldie Locks and the Three Bears. They were either too damaged, too short, or the wrong style.

Deep into the stash Mr. Math spotted two newell posts that were perfect. I bought them a while back at a garage sale. I can’t even remember why I thought I needed them but they were inexpensive and oak. We already had a medicine cabinet in the guest house from the previous owner. The mirror is pretty aged and may need to be replaced eventually but I sort of think it is cool.

The posts in this picture I thought would be perfect but they were too thin and too short.

My husband cut the cornice to fit- and did an amazing job, cut the legs t length, attached the legs with giant screws and glue then even spackled the screw heads for me so I could prime then paint the vanity with a semi gloss cabinet and trim black paint. Mr Math attached leveling feet so that we could get the cabinet level.

Just as I was thinking about purchasing a faucet the hubs surprised me with yet another treasure that I honestly have no idea when or where it came from. He found a chrome faucet in the stash with porcelain handles! It was chrome but had was filthy. A good cleaning and tightening all the parts made it exactly what I needed to finish off the sink.

I really like how it is all coming together.

The mirror looks more distressed in photos than it does in person but we may be getting another mirror cut to fit down the road.

Next up we will be installing the faucet, shower ring and drain in the claw foot tub.

I. Can’t. Wait.

Thank you all for following us on our journey.

Blessings,

Karen

Coldspring, guest house, vintage style

Hanging up the Quilt

Recently I shared the inspiration for the color scheme of the guest house was a fun quilt my great grandmother made. I just love those little houses. I always knew it would be hung on the north wall above the beds. I just didn’t have a plan for hanging it.

Thank goodness I have a problem solving hubby.

We laid out the quilt and decided to display 9 squares in a 3 x 3 pattern.

Mr. Math designed a quilt hanger using two sections of 1 x 6 painted boards and four bolts to basically hold the quilt in place by squeezing the folded quilt in place.

Slipping the folded quilt in was tricky but the idea worked!

Mr. Math cut off the bolts then we hung the quilt with some small brackets that held up the wood part without touching the quilt.

It looked good the first try but a little too low. I could just see it getting pulled down.

The second try was much better.

I am so glad to have a place for the quilt. The frames next to the quilt hold two framed prints of quilts that we bought in the early 90’s and a piece of tatting my grandmother made. Still working on getting something cohesive for the pillows on the beds when using them as daybeds.

It is so nice to have another project done.

Thanks for following along with us on our journey.

Blessings,

Karen

Coldspring, Country living, Country Style, vintage style

Installing a Vintage Kitchen Cabinet

Five years ago I bought a complete 1930’s upper kitchen cabinet set on Craigslist. It was solid, but filthy. The cabinet sat in storage at our house from the day we brought it home but I always knew where it would go when we finally got the guest house started.

It had all the original Bakelite hardware still on it but was in too bad of shape to save.

We literally figured out how big the front window could be, the location of the window, and the door based on this cabinet set. There was math involved and a little fussing at each other over getting everything just right.

When we started the building the cabinets were moved to the outdoor kitchen so I could work on it.

I took all the cabinet doors, hardware, and all the nails from when it was removed from the wall off then sanded everything down. It took several days.

Apparently at some point the cabinets were in a shop or garage and some knucklehead stored oil in there. It too a bit of sanding and strong primer to get the oil stains covered.

The cabinet doors had to be stripped and all the holes filled. The outdoor kitchen is only partially under cover and we have had the rainiest summer I can remember. Most days it was under a tarp.

The cabinets were painted with Behr cabinet paint in bright white. I picked chrome hardware to play on the vintage feel. Hardware is expensive people. For four knobs, two handles, hinges, and fasteners it was over $50.00 but it is so pretty!

That hardware! The Fiesta plate is a gift from my friend The Social Planner. Her father in law made it for them years ago.

The cabinets sat so long outside that when the were installed they needed another cleaning and a coat of paint. The biggest challenge was to get cabinets that were taken out of an old house, then put in a storage unit, then moved, then again in storage, then outside then moved again installed so that they were level and square on the wall.

The first try didn’t go so well.

Look at the cabinets compared to the wall and the horizontal planks. I literally laughed out loud.

The wall isn’t square, the floor isn’t level, but with some adjustments and more fussing, it looks better. Adding vintage kitchen ware on top helped too.

A folding table is standing in for the kitchenette until we get it built. That vintage sink under the window will be so beautiful.

We have a beautiful butcher block counter, vintage sink, refrigerator, microwave, and storage going in after the exterior gets painted. I am making myself wait but it is hard.

Aren’t you glad you don’t have to work off my drawings?

We love hearing from you.

Blessings,

Karen

bathroom, Coldspring, vintage style

Why We Hired a Pro for the Tub

If you know us, you know that we do as much work as we can on our projects unless we don’t have the strength or skills to do the work. We definitely did not not have the skill or experience to refinish our tub and sink so we hired it out. This post is not knocking someone who refinished their own tub or sink. If you were able to successfully do it I applaud you. I just know our limits. Together Mr. Math and I can do basic construction, plumbing, electrical, tile, and paint but haven’t had experience with bathtub refinishing.

We have hung on to the old farm sink since March of 2015. I paid a whole $2.00 for the sink and moved it with us here to Providence Acres. I loved it at first sight and would have been so disappointed if I messed it up trying to DIY refinish it.

It looked rough when we got it but the dark stain was just a moldy hard water spot.

The sink looked much better once I used CLR and toilet bowl cleaner to clear it up but it still wasn’t good enough to use as a kitchen sink.

Once it was cleaned there were rust stains and chips I hadn’t seen before.

The 5 1/2 foot long claw foot tub that we bought on Facebook marketplace for $200.00 was painted lime green on the base when we picked it up. I thought the porcelain looked to be in good shape but once the professional got started on it, I could see the pits and dings all over it.

A pro has access to the chemicals I don’t have and knows how to use them safely. Jesus came with exhaust fans, respirator mask, and a truck load of chemicals. I think his vehicle should have a hazmat warning sticker on it.

Muriatic acid, epoxy bonding agents, super thick oil based primer, and two part epoxy all smelled bad and took gloves and a mask along with a special fine mist sprayer, sander and porcelain bondo meant I would have never been able to have done this job as well as someone who does this for a living.

Jesus showed up at 11:00 with a helper and worked non stop until after 5:00 and then returned the following week to buff out some rough spots after the enamel had cured. We are just thrilled with how both turned out. So clean and shiny!

The finished project is beautiful.

I can’t wait to get the bathroom tiled, septic in and everything installed. We are getting closer.

Thank you for following along on our journey.

We love to hear from you.

Karen

Behr Paint with Primer, Coldspring, Painted Furniture, recycled furniture, rescuing damaged furniture, vintage style

1940’s Chest of Drawers

Waaay back on December 30th Mr. Math and I headed off to collect a chest of drawers, vanity, and mirror. Somehow along the way I also picked up a lime green claw foot tub but that is a story for another day.

The furniture belonged to my friend’s grandparents and had been in a garage for 20 years and was showing what humidity can do to furniture over time. The veneer was coming off and the drawers were warped. The mirror is going to really need some attention down the road but it is a beauty. I had no idea when I picked up these pieces that shortly I would temporarily go back to work. As a principal. Then there was a pandemic. Then online learning, zoom meetings, virtual everything. The bedroom furniture got put on the back burner. I have been busy people. I promise. So the furniture moved from one garage to another.

I honestly thought that the chest of drawers would be too much work to save but that original folk art factory stenciling kept staring at me. I knew I would have to give saving at least some of it a try. I got busy stripping the veneer off. I had to get a steamer after parts of it but it came off and got sanded. I bought water based polyurethane hoping I could seal the drawers after cleaning them. The first coat was a disaster. The old varnish under the poly started bubbling up. I stopped after one coat thinking that this was all getting primed and painted. I went to bed thinking about that darn chest of drawers. The next morning I decided to try going over the bubbly varnish with steel wool and to my surprise it wasn’t horrible. It took four coats to get them looking decent. They still aren’t perfect but I am glad they were preserved. The top was totally stripped and sanded by my husband including all those wiggly grooves around the top drawer. I stained it all dark walnut

I am keeping this set for my guest room. The base of the chest of drawers was painted a warm white called cinnamon bun. I liked the original hardware patina so I kept the as is but will be spraying them with a sealer soon. I convinced my husband to stop moving it inside to take some pictures, but I still have some touch ups. I love how it turned out and look forward to having it in my home.

glazing, rescuing damaged furniture, Roadside Rescue, vintage style

Using the Restoration Hardware Finish to Fix a Problem

A pile of tables were given to me.  I know.  I am so very lucky.

tables

The table I worked on this weekend was the one at the back in this picture.  I know I should have taken a better picture of the table, but in true form I just got in the mood to paint and jumped in.  It is how I operate when a lot is going on.  Paint first, think later.
The tables had been in a vacant house left by previous renters and this one was in pretty rough shape.
I fell in love with particular table because I have an identical one that is in great shape from my mom.   My table is a family piece that I would get grounded if I painted.  This one I am free to do what I want to.

I spray painted the legs with chalk spray paint I picked up at Walmart.  I liked the paint but frankly it wasn’t worth the extra cost for the chalk finish.  I should have just purchased flat white paint.


This table at one point sat under a leak and had water stains along with a water ring that just wouldn’t come out, even with sanding the finish off.  I tried my darkest stain, Minwax Jacobean, and the stain still showed through.  Bummer.


I knew I wanted the top of the table to be stained with the bottom painted, so I knew I needed a solution to my water problem.  The solution was my Restoration Hardware Weathered Oak Finish for the top.

I figured out this finish through trial and error and have used it several times like here on the bathroom vanity in our suburban house

dresser to bathroom vanity

and here on the top and sides of the Funky Dresser

Funky Dresser

It is a finish that covers a lot of flaws and is almost foolproof.  This finish is the most popular post on my blog, so I guess I am not alone in using the simple process.

Pickling Stain on top of the stained wood then wipe off in the direction of the wood grain almost immediately.


It always looks a little nasty at this point and every time I second guess my decision.

The next step is to apply a coat of Jacobean stain over the top.


Wipe off the excess stain with the grain and voila- the water rings disappear.

I sanded the paint slightly on the legs and will ne adding a clear protective finish to the top of the table once I am sure the stain has dried completely.


It turned out great and gave me the satisfaction of getting one project done this past weekend.

I don’t know where this table will end up, but I really think it is pretty.

I hope you were productive this last weekend,

Blessings,

Karen

Building a Home, Coldspring, Country living, kitchen storage, vintage style

Our First Project- The Kitchen

It looks like we will be closing on our home Friday.  We now have a closing date and time at the title company.  The insurance guy has gone to take pictures, and he survey is completed.  Whew.  This has been a struggle.

Before Mr. Math has to return to work, we want to get the kitchen up and running.

Here is how the kitchen looks today:

   
   
I found this inspiration picture on TomKat Designs

  
There are a lot of elements in this picture.  

Here are the plans to get the kitchen spruced up that should be doable this summer:

1.  The carpet must go.  Vinyl plank floating floor is going in as soon as it comes in.  Currently it is back ordered until August 5th.

  
2.  The fluorescent light is coming down and pot lights are going in around the kitchen.

3.  The ceiling fan is coming out.  

4.  There is a huge pantry on the other side of the refrigerator that is coming out so that a walkway can be put in to open up the space.  We are going to put in a pantry in the laundry room.

  
5.  Pendant lights are going over the island.  I plan on working on some IKEA pendants to get the look I want.

  
6.  A farmhouse sink is going in.  I have decided that I wNt a double farmhouse sink.  I love the way it looks in the kitchen of House of Smiths.

  
   
 7.  The cabinet doors are getting a makeover.

  
8.  The laminate will be replaced with Quartz.  

  
9.  The cabinets will be painted two toned and hardware added.

   

  
We will be keeping white appliances because one day I hope to have a vintage stove…one day.

We will keep you posted on our progress.

I hope your summer is going well.

Blessings,

Karen