(I put a shiny pink picture first because the "befores" are pretty gruesome and I didn't want to subject everyone to that.
My little girl turned 12 last week. *sniff* You know what that means, right? (Besides me crying in my Cheerios about the lost baby years and all those tiny ruffly dresses.) Yep, it means she's decided she's too old for her "baby" room anymore. Lucky for her, I've been watching design shows like a madwoman and formulating a plan.
I started plotting and planning back... oh, I don't even know. Months ago. She inadvertently helped me by picking her paint color while we were killing time at the doctor's office one day back in June; we were checking out the posters on the wall and she pointed out a particular pink (ew, pink) shade on one of them and said, "If I ever had a room makeover, that's the color I'd want my walls." Ask and you shall receive, child (as long as it's cheap, lol).
As it happened, the week containing her birthday was one she was spending away from our house, so I decided the whole thing could be a surprise and gave myself a one-week time frame to get it all done. One week, says I, is plenty of time. No sweat.
Scratch that. It turned out I had to work parts of that Saturday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, and all day Thursday. Still, no problem, I thought, and I got to work.
Here are a few examples of the disaster that confronted me in the bedroom:
(Believe it or not, I had the kid clean before she left for the week.)
Once all the furniture and such was removed, I realized I had even more work cut out for me than I'd suspected...
....Yeah. It's hard to really show the disarray and general shabbiness of the room in pictures (especially when I seem to be lacking in the mad photo skillz department), but trust me when I say it was not a shining example of a clean, tidy, well-appointed room. That was one room in serious need of some help.
But before I ramble on about all the projects, let's get to the good stuff... the after pictures!
I set myself a budget of $100 to do the whole room. With that in mind, I decided to rip out the closet and replace it with a smaller one, replace the gigantic dresser, build a new bed with under-bed storage drawers, create a headboard/divider and desk, and turn her dilapidated coverless toybox into a bench. Of course, there were other projects thrown in, like painting the room, adding a few lamps (what kind of room only has one lightbulb, anyway?), and painting all the furniture, but those were the main construction projects. Also, I thought about redoing the nightstand (formerly a wall desk that was passed down by my sister and couldn't be put on the wall) since it doesn't go with the rest of the "new" room, but it was the only piece of my daughter's furniture that stayed in the room, and I wanted her to be able to make the choice about whether/how to change it.
To make a long story short(er), I got the project (mostly) done and she absolutely loved it. There were a few things I wasn't happy with--like the carpet patching job I had to do to make up for the difference in closet size, and the fact that I didn't get to finish the faces of the drawers because I learned at 8pm Thursday that she would be home at 7:30am Friday (as opposed to 6pm, as I was expecting)--but overall, I'm pleased. Ridiculously proud of myself for getting it done in a week and
under budget, too.
I re-used and re-purposed A LOT of items from her room (and elsewhere in the house) and did a fair bit of yard sale shopping to make it happen; much of that was just a matter of looking at things differently (turning the toybox shell into a couch, for example, or making strips of the ceiling molding into a replacement piece for the door frame rather than running out to buy new items).
I won't lie, this project involved an incredible amount of stress and swearing, and there were several times I thought I'd never get it done. I'd never done any major project by myself, so there was a pretty big learning curve on a few things (and one bruised rib from a rogue table saw), but really, to anyone who might be nervous about tackling such a big project, I can honestly say: just go for it. You WILL figure it out, and you CAN do it. And don't be afraid to change your plans midway through (even several times, as I did). There are a zillion ways to get a project done, and even if you don't use the "right" way, things can still come out great.
...And that's enough inspirational, motivational rambling from me.
If you have any questions, feel free to ask--I'll tell you everything I can about the process and stuff, but I thought this post was already way too long. Details about each major component, costs, etc. can be found on my shiny new blog
Thanks for reading, hope this gives someone some good ideas!