When we moved from Bossier City in July 2014, it was very unplanned. Honestly, it couldn’t have been anymore unplanned. Jacob applied for a job back in our hometown in April, interviewed for it within a week or two, and then two weeks later, he accepted the new position. We weren’t ready to move back home at all. We had just built our house in 2012 and were still adjusting to married life and figuring things out, so to say we weren’t prepared would be an understatement.
Our hometown was starting to really boom economically, and houses were selling faster than you could make any appointment to see it. It was crazy! Houses were selling within hours of being on the market, so it was a bit scary because we weren’t really ready to move, and we knew we needed to find something fast so we wouldn’t have to rent an apartment. After a not-so-fun apartment experience when we first married, I really did not want to live in another apartment unless we just had to. We started searching online just to see what was available, but things were selling so fast, it was hard to try to do that from 3 hours away and without a real estate agent.
Luckily, Jacob had kept in touch with a lot of old co-workers, and one of them told us that both of his neighbors were selling their houses, so we kept that in the back of our minds. The area was good and where we wanted to live, and the house size was decent, especially compared to the starter home we had just built. So, Jacob checked the house out first, and he said I should take a look when I was in town. We didn’t really get to look at it on our own very much. It was a very fast walk through (like 5 minutes!), but we thought it would be a good fit for us with some new paint and maybe some upgrades later on, so we put in our offer and bought the house. I didn’t plan on it being a permanent house for us because I really want to build our “dream” home in the next few years, but in the meantime, I knew this one would work for a while, especially with just the two of us.
Shortly after we moved in, we had most of the rooms painted, and I got to decorating once the boxes were unpacked. I felt like our living room and dining room were coming together nicely, but the breakfast room was just blah. We had some faux leather chairs with an older table (that should probably be replaced soon) and then everything else was just kind of thrown together, so I knew at some point, I would want to tackle that room and give it some love and fun flare.
I purchased new chairs from Target (here and here). I love them. They comfy and weren’t very expensive at all, so if I change my mind later, I won’t feel like I’m wasting as much money when/if I replace them. I do plan to keep them for a while though.
Here’s what it looked like before:
Pretty boring, right? I had already taken down the painting when I snapped this picture, but trust me, it didn’t really add anything extra to this room. I had just painted the walls a light gray, but it pretty much looked white, and I didn’t love it. Some people can pull off white rooms, but I can’t, and I just didn’t love this room after I painted it. I really didn’t want to paint the room again because painting takes forever when I do it, but the color was just too plain for me, so it had to be redone for sure at some point.
As you can tell from the photo, this room needed a makeover or some kind of design/color very badly. It was just so boring compared to the rest of the house I had already decorated. So I came up with a plan:
- rug – I had one previously but it just looked old, so a new one was on the list of things to buy.
- buffet – I really wanted a buffet table. Something you probably don’t know yet is that I have a terrible obsession with plates and things that go on tables. I’m trying to do better about that and just buy plates I really, really want, but it’s a struggle. So a buffet was really required, so I could have a place for all my new plates. HA!
- light fixture – I really like this one and plan to keep it, but I really want one with some pizzazz.
- wall art – I had painted the picture that was in that frame, but I couldn’t decide if I liked it in this room, so I could splurge for something else if I found something I loved.
I felt like the room wouldn’t require a whole lot of money to give it the makeover it really needed, and I’m usually pretty thrifty, so I set out to find the best deals I could to give this room some love.
Here’s what the room looks like now after just a little bit of time and money:
What a crazy difference, huh!? Now, the breakfast room has some personality, and it can compete with the living room and dining room.
I found a tutorial online from Young House Love blog about how to add board and batten to the walls, here. It looked fairly simple, and we priced it out ahead of time, which turned out to not be all that expensive. I decided for this project, I really wanted to do it on my own for the most part, so I just had Jacob supervise all of my cuts and help hold things when needed. I’m super proud of myself for doing it all by myself, especially because I don’t really think of myself as very handy these days. I come up with great design ideas, but I usually rely on Jacob to help with the building part of things, so for this project, I really wanted to try to do it myself as much as I could, and I learned a lot along the way! I can’t wait for my next project with the miter saw. 🙂
The board and batten project was a little bit lengthy and took a few days to complete, but I think it turned out great! It took way longer than I really wanted it to with all of the cutting, sanding and painting, but once it was complete, I knew it gave the room the extra oomph it really needed.
I painted the walls a darker gray color (Behr – Dark Granite), which is actually the same dark gray in our dining room. Then I painted the board and batten a bright white to make it really pop.
I don’t know exactly how much we spent on the board and batten, but it was less than $150 for the supplies… although we did buy a miter saw, which was more than that, but I know we’ll be able to use it for other projects soon (ahem, crown molding in some rooms that don’t have it yet).
The art on the walls? I created those myself for less than $50 for all of the supplies (two 24×48 canvases, black paint and paint brushes). It took a few hours to paint and then touch up, but it was worth it considering the ones I liked were well over $200, and now we have something unique on our walls.
The buffet is from Target! Can you believe that? I needed something pretty slim because this room is not that large, and I really didn’t want to overcrowd it, but a buffet was a must, so I found this one for under $400 with discounts! It actually turned out to be my 4th wedding anniversary gift from Jacob! Similar buffets retail for over $1000 usually, so I was super excited when I found such a great deal. It came pre-assembled, except for the legs, so it was a breeze to get it set up. The hardest part was unpacking it from the box, which took a while, but it was packaged up so nicely that it wasn’t broken or scratched!
The animal print rug was under $100 from Ross Dress for Less. I couldn’t believe it when I saw it in the store. It was the perfect size and hello, the price was amazing! I knew I would have to convince Jacob a bit to let me put this in our house, but with just a little bit of twisting of the arm, he said it could stay. Score! I did tell him that the other rugs I was looking into were well over double that price, so that helped to convince him quite a bit I’m sure.
The feathers in the vase are from ZGallerie. I purchased them a year or two ago, and they tend to move around our house quite a bit.
The curtains were the splurge of the room. They’re from Pier 1, and I love the little bit of gold at the top! I’m seriously considering buying them in ivory for our master bedroom makeover, but I’m not sure if I want to splurge on them again… just yet.
Everything else is stuff I already had or came from Ross or Marshalls. I love shopping at those stores, particularly Marshalls, because you can find a lot of really nice stuff for not so much money when you’re on a tight budget like I was for this room.
I’m still on the hunt for a light fixture. Jacob likes one I picked out but dislikes the other one (my first choice), and I really kind of want something fun and spicy for the room. He doesn’t seem to be really going for it yet… so I’m going to keep looking and then try to convince him to let me purchase the one spunky one. 🙂 I’ll share my light fixture options in another post soon!
I really love the way this room has turned out. Just the light fixture to go, and it’ll be all finished and on to the next space, which I’m already working on now!