head diy Design Fanatic: February 2010

Sunday, February 28, 2010

What a Difference A Little Paint Makes!

  This is my Master Bath before: with the lovely builder white primer paint. We lived with this for 8 years before I finally picked a color and painted. (Please don't be hard on me ... I had been insanely busy during that time working full time making everyone else's home beautiful and taking care of my family! Something had to give).
We had decided to put our house on the market before we painted so, we wanted maximum impact without spending a lot of money.

And here is the after:
I tried out two paint colors & didn't like either one, so I mixed them together until I found one I liked. Then I had Lowes color match the custom color. My husband added crown molding.

We replaced the large mirror over the vanity with two separated ones over each sink base. I found them at TJ Maxx for $19.99 each. Since we wanted to keep costs down I painted the existing light fixtures to match the mirrors.

The whole project cost us around $350 including the metal artwork which I found at SteinmartOur next project beginning in a few weeks is to install tile flooring.

Thanks for stopping by,


Saturday, February 27, 2010

Guest Room Progress

O.k., I couldn't leave that awful photo of my guest room up all weekend as the first thing you see when you come to my blog, so here are a couple of updated ones.  
The budget was really tight since  we are basically staging the room to sell the house. We bought the headboard and Basset nightstand at a friends estate sale for $125 and found the matching tall Basset dresser on Craigslist for $150. How great was that to find a matching set of furniture from 2 different places? The sheers were $24 from Lowes, the pillow and lamp are from Homegoods ($16.99 and $29.99) and the paint for the room was $25.(we had a gallon left over from when we painted the living room). The artwork was moved from other rooms. I painted the edge of the larger piece black to coordinate with the room.

I am looking for a comforter or matelasse quilt to replace the flowered comforter.

This morning I will be catching up on some painting projects. I need to paint a gold vanity mirror Oil Rubbed Bronze & paint something (not sure what to call it) silver for my daughters room. 

Happy Saturday to everyone


Friday, February 26, 2010

So Many Projects .... So Little Time

Are you like me & have a LONG list of projects needing to be started or finished? Being a DIYer, our home has always been in a state of endless projects. And, we can't just work on one at a time, but have several going on at one time!
We've really kicked it in to high gear around our house beginning last summer because we are planning on putting our house on the market.

Here's what we've done so far:

* Guest Room: painted & decorated - After living in our house for 9 years the room was still painted the white builder primer paint.

I am not so good about taking before photos, but I dug around &
actually found a few before photos. This one was taken by my sister.
Wow, draperies are from the previous house & don't match the comforter)

* Master Bath: Yep, this room was still the builder white, too. Installed crown molding, replaced the large mirror with 2 picture frame ones & repainted the vanity light fixtures. You can see the progress we've made in the Master Bath here.
Our Master Bath before painting. Ughhh, is what
I said every time I went in here!

* Master Bedroom Draperies: Had the fabric for at least 2 years.
* Bonus Room: Installed a closet so we could list the house as a 5 bedroom.
* Upstairs Bath: Repainted.
* Powder Room: repainted a neutral color over the bordello red.
* 2 Bedrooms (2 daughters): Painted both, redecorated one. Almost finished  with one that is coming out REALLY well.
*Foyer: added crown molding below shelf above Front Door
* Basement: built mantel shelf & had the stonework done
* Deck: repainted
* Front Porch: replaced posts, removed railing
This is all in addition to decrappifying the entire house and basement!

Whew, I guess we've been busy.

Now here's what we still have to do:

* Master Bath: Tile floor. This is our next project coming up a few weeks
* Laundry Room: Tile floor
* Upstairs Bath: Tile floor
* Bonus Room/Office: install a closet organizer
* Upstairs Bedroom: Paint trim
* Porch: build a new rail
* Garage: Paint walls & Floor
* Family room, Foyer, Hallway: call a painter!

We are going to try to get this all finished by the end of May. That leaves us only 3 months! There is a project planned for EVERY one of our weekends. We are definitely going to be busy. I will post the after photos soon.

Do you have multiple projects going at one time and have "Design ADD" like me? Or, do you stick to one project at a time?

Hope everyone has a GREAT weekend!!!


Thursday, February 25, 2010

Mirror, Mirrors, Everywhere!

I am really drawn to mirrors. Can't help it. I'm not sure what it is about them, but it's difficult for me to ignore them. Selecting art for the wall is much more difficult for me, but mirrors? Ahhh, there are so many beautiful ones.

This one is in the laundry room above coat rack.

The black mirror is in the hall next to the laundry room. All the girls check themselves in it before heading out the door.

Master Bedroom.

Master Bedroom closet - I use this one when I try on jewelry.

Had to add this one in a wall grouping in the foyer.

I found this mirror at Bombay. Love the classic lines. This one is also in the Foyer.

A very special mirror hangs in my dining room. It was my grandmother's mirror that hung in her grand Louis XV living room. I received my creative bent from her. My grandmother would see a dress in a shop window, then make the pattern & sew the dress. I was a patternmaker for a clothing manufacturer for several years. I know all of you have certain thing you are drawn to in terms of decorative accessories. What are the decorative things you love?

thanks for stopping by,


I almost forgot this one in our basement family room!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

I Love My Garden

I love to garden and can't wait to look out my basement door and see this view

And for my front yard to look like this

The path coming up from the creek in my backyard

I finally found a nice round fireplace for the patio in the woods. Will be putting it out this weekend. That's my cat buddy who follows me around everywhere.

Thanks for stopping by,


Monday, February 22, 2010

Kitchens & Baths I've Designed

kitchen design, designer kitchen, diydesignfanatic.comDesigning cabinetry is a little like having a baby. It's a long several months. Sometimes things go smoothly, but other times clients aren't quite sure what they want, so the design process takes awhile. But, when the project is finished and everything comes out well ... no ... better than you thought, then it's all worth it.
It was due to September 11th that I got into the kitchen design business. You might remember we had a little recession after and since I had been designing $3000+ custom closets and no one was buying them at that time, I  applied for a temporary job at the Home Depot and the General Manager thought I'd be a good kitchen designer since I had designed custom closets.  He  sent me to their Kitchen & bath design school. After working at HD, I went on to work at smaller cabinet company & have worked with the same people at another place. 
With eight years of design project you might think my portfolio would be filled with photos. But, up until the summer of 2008, we were insanely busy so we didn’t take the time. I hope you like the ones I do have. 
Do you have a favorite?

kitchen design, designer kitchen, diydesignfanatic.comlove putting large pot and pan drawers in a kitchen whenever the design allows. They are so much more functional than roll out shelves inside a cabinet because there is only one step to get out what's inside.

kitchen design, designer kitchen, diydesignfanatic.com 
I love the big island in this kitchen. This would be a wonderful kitchen for entertaining because the breakfast room is on the right and behind you is a keeping room with a stone fireplace

This Master Bath goes with the kitchen above. I hope that the people who bought this house were tall because the vanity should be shorter with a vessel sink. The builder hadn't ever used one before and didn't know that the vanity had to be shorter when he ordered the sinks.

kitchen design, designer kitchen, diydesignfanatic.comI love the casual feel of this kitchen. All of the bump ups and outs keep it interesting. This kitchen was much more affordable than most due to the door style.

kitchen design, designer kitchen, diydesignfanatic.comThe large drawers on either side of the cooktop make this kitchen very practical. The bump ups and outs break up the long run of cabinets.

This was a very challenging project, but I love the way it turned out. I custom designed all of the hoods seen in these photos & every one is a little different from the others. I wish there was a close up of the ins & outs of the crown molding on the cabinet on the angle. There are bump ups, outs, ins & outs & I prayed for all of the angles to work. (and they did, thanks to a really awesome cabinet installer(craftsman) Yay!!!)

kitchen design, designer kitchen, diydesignfanatic.com
I only designed the big island on this one. The house had been on the market for over a year & a buyer saw the house & agreed to buy it only if the multi-angled island with a raised bar was replaced with a large non raised island. 
There is seating on the side opposite the sink, along with a beverage refrigerator, as well. This was my first custom designed island. The four extra large corbels alone were over $1000!
I was extremely happy with the way it turned out.

Thanks for stopping by,



A New Beginning ...

Hi, my name is Pam and I’m a design fanatic ...

Yes, I am saying it out loud, I am addicted to design. (I am sure there are many more of you out there … I’ve seen your blogs!) I am in a continual state of observing and assessing the elements of design that I encounter in my everyday life … Space, Line, Shape, Texture, Color … and, the principles of design such as Balance, Rhythm, Repetition, Transition, Scale, Harmony, Contrast, and my favorite: Functionality. (I’m sure I missed a few). All of you design fanatics assess these in your daily life too, even if you didn’t sit through design 101 & can’t name the el
ements & principles of design. It doesn’t matter whether I am observing the exterior of a house, a garden, a vase, an outfit, piece of furniture, a billboard or even a school project.

I am envious of you who can just pick one area and be really good at it such as creating jewelry, invitations, clothing, a garden, etc. It’s too difficult for me to choose just one thing. I am constantly designing & re-designing the multitude of things I see all around me -in my head. The only way to calm those thoughts in my head is to be involved in an actual creative project … doesn’t matter what it is. Sounds like a mental disease to me!

I can remember designing things when I was very young. What do I remember from kindergarten? I remember painting these ginormous ball gowns on princesses. When I was a few years older I remember sitting in my bedroom creating dresses for my Barbie from scraps of fabric that I had. What do you remember from your childhood? Could be the key of what you should be doing as an adult! I think I read that in a book somewhere.

Being a Christian, I used to wish that I had some really important talent such as singing or teaching and felt bad that my career up until I had kids was in the fashion industry was so secular. I mentioned this to a friend as we were having dinner at one of our favorite pizza places. I can’t remember all that she said, but she basically said it was the first thing written in the bible in Genesis 1:1 which says: In the beginning God created …. If being creative is one of His attributes, then it’s a good one for me to have too. I have never forgotten that, thanks Melissa!

We are often told to find the thing that we have a passion for in life, do it, and that will make you happy. I always thought of this one thing as a paying job, but it doesn’t have to be. I have found that my one thing that makes me happy (other than being with my family) is very general, and that one thing is to create … anything … as long as it is helps to make the world around me a more beautiful place.

Thanks for stopping by,


P.S.The photos in the mosaic are pictures of some of my work. Starting from the top left & going clockwise: 1. A kitchen I designed in Rosehill … 2. My backyard … 3. Another kitchen I designed in Rosehill …4. Tablescape from my youngest daughter’s 15th Birthday party … 5. Fall wreath on my front door … 6. Metal Art in my master bathroom … 7. Close up of the design on the comforter on my bed … 8. The kitchen I designed for my brother.