It all started, innocently enough, on a Saturday. Matt and I decided to “tidy up” the house and began our efforts in the bedroom. I wish I had a good “before photo” but like many things in our house, we didn’t know we were doing to do it until we were half way into it. This cell phone picture is the beginning of our story and our first claim of victory over the bedroom.
A bit of a back story, a couple months ago we had installed floating Lack shelves from Ikea and a wall mounted Besta Bur cabinet with reading lights above our bed. This would be when we discovered that all of our common walls have firebreaks. Not sure what this means? We soon found out. Behind our drywall is a layer of plywood, behind that layer is where our studs live.
In practical terms what does this mean? It means that it is near impossible to detect studs through nearly an inch of drywall and plywood and that dry wall anchors do not have any space to expand and are thus useless. As you might imagine, neither Matt or I were entirely comfortable with the setup pictured above . After one of the small shelves tore out of the wall and I had a series of nightmares of being crushed by the cabinet we assessed the anchors on the cabinet and deemed it unsafe. We were left with some pretty large holes where the cabinet and shelves used to be. For whatever reason the shelves on my side of the bed (the left) were secure so we left them in place.
So with that background, we decided to start our household tidying up with the bedroom. We had the wayward cabinet on the floor and Matt was without a bedside table. The drywall holes needed to be patched and the room needed a good cleaning. The first thing that we did was clean off the dresser and move most of the furniture out of the room. Remember my concept of the tile puzzle? Yeah, the mess just moved into the recently updated office. *sigh* It was at this point that we realized that 18 months earlier the movers had broken our bed frame. Instead of disassembling the bed frame they had moved it in one piece, causing the foot board and the headboard to come apart. Awesome. Matt updated his Facebook status to reflect our “pleasure” and what ensued was hilarity.
Matt: Nothing like finding out 18 months AFTER you’ve moved that the movers broke your then brand new bed.
Friend 1: Are you sure you didn’t.. ya know… bappity boopity?
Friend 2: Uh-Hun… Sure. Blame it on the movers!
Amy’s Dad: Not sure I should have read this.
Matt’s Brother: I told you it was broken last summer when I was out there. Maybe you should stop seeing how high bowling balls bounce off of it. Just a thought.
Friend 1: Bowling balls indeed 🙂
All we could do was disassemble the bed and prop the mattress against the wall. We vacuumed the floor and patched the walls. Unable to admit defeat over half the walls in our house we decided to purchase a more powerful stud finder.
Lowes Trip #1: Super-dupper stud finder and spackle
In a moment of pure genius I suggest that we install the ceiling fan we had purchased, you know because the bed was already out of the room. What I failed to account for was 1) we had no plan and not the faintest clue what tools we needed and 2) it was already 2PM and we only had 3 hours of daylight left. Logic tossed aside all I cared about was replacing the boring ceiling fixture with a modern and polished fan.
Doesn’t it just scream- “replace me!”
Problem number 1: all of the junction boxes in our house are not standard size, they are approximately 1/2 inch too small and won’t work with modern light fixtures. Also, the junction box is on a brace not rated for ceiling fans.
Lowes Trip # 2: Wood glue and straps to repair bed, drywall saw to enlarge hole in ceiling & ceiling fan retrofit kit.
Fun little tid-bit, as a woman who never got to do too many house projects growing up I get really excited and like to try new things. Matt and his siblings were always delegated the fun task of holding the flashlight growing up. My eagerness on all household projects has frequently left Matt “holding the flashlight”. However, at this point in the project I am holding the flashlight (and camera).
With our newly enlarged hole we faced a problem. How were we going to get the existing brace out so that we could put in the retrofit kit. We tugged, we pushed, we tried to get it to budge to no avail.
Lowes Trip #3: Metal keyhole saw.
Matt dangled the prospect of getting my very own sawzall in front of me, but neither of us could justify the cost right now. The $6 keyhole saw did the trick.
By this point the sun had set. Power was turned off to the room and we resorted to running a long extension cord from the second floor to finish up the task. After the battle with getting the junction box properly installed the fan itself assembled very quickly. So quickly in fact that I have no photos of the progress. Just a finished product.
Exhausted but not finished we managed to hang a third floating shelf and move the bed back into the room. And then we slept- under the quiet hum of our new fan. Like so many rooms in our house this one won’t be totally finished until we paint the walls but here is a peak into our “Tidied up” master bedroom.
To balance out our platform bed and the large window we found a set of low four drawer dressers which are the same height as the Malm bedside table.
Source: Ikea *this item appears to no longer be available- 😦
We placed two dressers next to each other to create a long low space below the window.
At the foot of our bed is a leather storage ottoman. The Ikea bedside table is now on Matt’s side of the bed.
The color scheme that we have planned for this room is grey and robins egg blue.
We can’t wait to paint the walls a light grey and for now I am enjoying little blue accents like my farmers egg crate from anthropology. I swear that Catherine at Forty Twenty Four introduced this repurposing idea to me but I may be imagining it! Nonetheless, I love it!
What started as a plan to tidy up the house ended up with a minor makeover. Do you plan out your home projects or just stumble into them as we do? Exactly what is the minimum number of trips to Lowes required to complete a project? For us I don’t think we can ever get away with less than 2 Lowes trips per project, heaven forbid we plan it right the first time.