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Topic: Sanity saving breakfast nook  (Read 2366 times)
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« on: September 13, 2008 07:22:43 PM »

This is my very first post with an attempt at adding pics.  I know the Tuscan look has been done to death, but I still love it.  I am really nervous but here goes. I apologize for the yucky pics, I am no photographer so...

Background: hubby and I bought our home outright about 12 years ago.  It was/is a labor of love/hate.  Never have I believed I could have so many emotions about an inanimate object.  Previous owners were a bit backwards or woods.  So this house was near derelict.  But that is what allowed us to buy it and not pay a bank note every month. We have made improvements, and it always seems that time and money never coincides. I think we should be further along after 12 years, but somehow living, working and raising a family gets in the way too.  I have to forgive myself for that.   

Our biggest undertaking was the kitchen (so far).  It was a craptastic to begin with.  No before pics, I never want to revisit that again.  When we moved in we were so very poor we barely had money for paint.  That is the first thing I did in order to tolerate the room.   I painted everything a white and blue to live with until we got money.  It was disgusting. Picture Sea foam green everywhere, a mix of cabinets from days of yore and 80's cheapness and a really bad peel and stick tile.   It took us 3 years to get it totally done.  What I am showing now is an old back bedroom that was in back of the kitchen.  We ripped down a wall and lengthened the kitchen.  One of the drawbacks to this house is that the rooms are rather longer than wider.  This breakfast nook was how we attempted to make that work for us.  A full on kitchen table does not fit in the kitchen.

The door was a window that my hubby and dear old ex-father in law busted out cement blocks to make.  It is half of discarded old French doors (free, we had to put in our own door knob hole and everything).  This was a hellish job start to finish.  We ripped the walls down, a ghastly paneling from the 70's and put up brand new drywall.  The dry wall job we did was crappy.  Mix high humidity with broken pieces of dry wall and it adds to a pretty crumby look.  We were determined to save money and we used up everything we had on hand.  So to hide the dry wall I found an idea in a book I was looking through at the book store to put in stones and distressed plaster.  I used paper bags, wall paper paste and dry wall spackle.  We put up a chair rail to cover up the imperfections (half pieces of drywall, only went half way up).  Another idea I found in a book while browsing, plastic grapes cut in half.  The grapes are nestled in spackle in all the corners and give the look of relief plaster.  This covered up the terrible taping job we did in the corners.   I mixed up various left over paints to damp sponge on the walls.  The ceiling is an embossed wall paper painted grey and washed with a silver glaze.  Looks like tin (I forgot to take pics of that).  We put in a ceiling fan.  We ripped up the floor to find (to my joy), wooden floor.  We have yet to rent the sander to re-finish it, but I am happy to say that the distressed look of it doesn't really detract from the look of the room. 

I collect platters, sterling and silver plated serving pieces and liquor decanters.  That and all the wrought iron and wine inspired pictures contribute to the clutter.  I have to say that I am attracted to shiny things and I like having things to look at.  I know it is too busy for a lot of people.  Most visitors to our home are really intrigued by it all.  It is certainly hell to dust.  I like my stuff and can't stand the thought of getting rid of any of it though.  So thank heaven for the static dusters.   

We were going for the Italian/Classical look and I have to say I am happy with it even after about 2 years since completion.  This is a wonderful place for me to sit and drink coffee, read and commune with my dogs in the quiet mornings before the 3 men (hubby and 2 teenage sons) start getting up and around.  It is truly my link to sanity.  It is also like a nice cafe when friends visit. 


"The cure for boredom is curiosity.  There is no cure for curiosity"
Brynns Mom
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2008 08:04:51 PM »

What  a great story!  It looks great and I love the platters.  I collect tole trays so I feel you on that one!!  Great job!
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2008 08:54:45 PM »

i think it looks great
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« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2008 10:30:41 PM »

Wow that a lot of work, but what a lovely reward. Congrats on the finished product.

MAKE: something of yourself
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« Reply #4 on: September 16, 2008 12:41:25 AM »

wow wow wow the amount of love and work that went into it.. i am so glad you have such a great nook to curl up with by yourself, dogs, and friends. congrats on making it:D
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