Tag Archives: wrkdesigns

And Then There Was Art!

I finally hung something on our bare white walls! The artwork is made even more special as it was created by my family.

And Then There Was Art

  1. Set of 4 (custom ordered) Chair pieces by my mother. Check out more of her items on her Etsy Shop: FiberArchitecture
  2. Cupcake painting by my little sister as a reproduction study from a piece by Wayne Thiebaud. Check out more of her handmade items in her Etsy Shop:MMPKreations

Now I just need to find some time to put up all the other artwork I have planned!


Our First Christmas At The House

Happy Belated Holidays!

Our First Christmas

We’ve slowly been getting back into the swing of home repairs…and I’ve definitely been slacking on my updates. But, I first wanted to recap some of the highlights of our first Christmas spent in the house!

Our First Christmas 2

  1. Our Christmas tree and presents! As an advocate of “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”, I’m not a big fan of buying a ‘real’ tree. Instead I picked up a Nordic Pine indoor plant which we’ll be able to use for years to come!
  2. The newest addition to our household! Meet Ginger AKA “Slinky.” A very sweet little girl that Neil’s brother found abandoned out in the snow.
  3. Winter wreath. My handmade book page rosette wreath (that I started 2 years ago and finally found the time to finish) finished with a red ribbon saved from last year’s presents.

Hope everyone enjoyed their holidays and look for more updates, demos, renovations, and news soon!

To Do Before The Move

to do before the move

Since we are getting SO VERY CLOSE to being able to move into the inlaw suite I thought I’d put together a list of the last few items we still need to finish.

To Do Before the Move:

  • Finish Bathroom (install mirror and accessories; hang rod, curtain and door; finishing decor details)
  • Dining Room built-in (install shelves, paint)
  • Kitchen Storage Nook (install 1/4 round, paint)
  • Kitchen Floor (replace flooring transition strip…which was accidentally broken, but needed to be replaced sooner or later anyway)
  • Kitchen Drawers (install custom printed drawer liners)
  • Replace vents (maybe replace baseboards too?)
  • Linen Closet (paint, install doors)
  • Kitchen Door Entrance (replace lock)
  • Prime all walls
  • Cleaning, Cleaning and more Cleaning

We’re hoping to knock off most of the “building” items over the weekend. Then we’ll just have to clean, put a fresh coat of primer on the walls, and schedule the official moving day!

It’s Really Coming Together

Things are really starting to come together. We should be able to set up an official MOVING DAY within the next 3 weeks. Woo Hoo!

Here’s what we’ve been up to…


coming together

Closet shelves and rods installed. Our closets are much narrower than standard closets, so we had to come up with our own custom set up.

I installed the rods myself…using the screw gun and everything! I’m on my way to being a power tool queen. =)

We also hung the refinished doors with the “new” vintage knobs.

Still To Do:

  • Install the door closure magnetic hardware
  • Hang door on living room closet
  • Clean


Dining Room Built-In:

coming together 2

Finally figured out how to put together the framework for the built-in shelf in the dining room. Now I just need to figure out where I want the shelves. I figure it will mostly be used for knickknacks and some artwork, so I’ll probably just need a few shelves…uneven placement might be nice.

Still To Do:

  • Install Shelves
  • Paint / Prime



coming together 3

The bathroom is functional! We swapped out the valves, hooked up the toilet and vanity, and hooked up the tub. This project has been going on for so long I was afraid to be able to actually use it. But, it’s really coming along and looks great.

Still To Do:

  • Hang the mirror, towel rod, toilet paper roll, and accessories
  • Put up the curtain rod and curtain
  • Hang artwork
  • Find bath mat
  • Hang door
  • Eventually: find cabinet and/or floating shelves for above the toilet
  • Clean

Baseboards and Vanities

I’m still totally in love with the Jalapeno Jelly color of the bathroom. The photos make it look a bit more lime than it is in person, but I would highly recommend checking it out at Lowes.

Right before I started painting I came across an amazing painting tip on Pinterest. It was so “duh” that I can’t believe I’ve never heard of it or thought of it before. But, here’s the general idea:

Painting Tip: How to get perfect lines where colors meet

  1. Paint the light colored walls (in my case the white ceiling)
  2. Tape off the edges in prep for the colored walls.
  3. Paint the taped edge 1st with the color of the wall it touches (the white of the ceiling), this seals the seam of the tape and any paint that seeps under the tape will be the same color as the area you’re taping off…genius!
  4. Then, paint the colored wall as usual (green in my case).
  5. Peel off tape and enjoy your crisp edges!

Check out the tip in full detail here.

Okay. Back to our bathroom progress:

baseboard and vanity

1) Now that the walls were painted, it was time to install the baseboards. We dry fit the vanity in place, so we could cut the baseboards around it, in order to ensure that the vanity sat flush against the wall. Don’t want a gap between the sink back and wall that water can get down!

I picked out 5.25″ baseboards. I wanted to use this throughout the entire house, but it’s a bit more expensive so Neil told me I could use it for select areas and everywhere else would be the standard 3.25″. I like the look of the taller baseboards, not only because it’s more elegant, but because we have floor vents. The taller baseboards make the vents seem less protruding.

If we had just been repainting the bathroom, I would have painted the baseboards first and then the walls, but since it’s new construction it was better to paint the green, install the baseboards, then come back and paint them. So, I caulked the seams, painted the baseboards (2 coats), then taped off the baseboards (using the painting tip above), and touched up the green wall to get nice crisp finished edges.

2) The next step is hooking up all the plumping. I hooked up the new faucet to the sink and attached the supply lines underneath (whenever replacing a sink, it’s much easier to do this part before the sink is placed). I found the faucet on sale at Home Depot for $20. It was in our price range and has a high neck, so a win-win in my book.

3) Then it was time to figure out the toilet. Turns out (I think since we have an older home), our toilet area in not standard…typical. Standard toilets are 12″ from the wall. Ours was about 10.5″. Instead of getting a new toilet for $100 it would cost us over $300 to order one.

Toilet Tip: If you are replacing your toilet, measure it to make sure you get the proper size. Measure from the wall to the center of the drain (or to the bolts that secure the toilet down if it’s still in place). If you don’t have a standard size (about 12″ from wall), be prepared to pay the big bucks…or see if you can repair it instead. 😉

Luckily (or not), the other bathroom had the same sized toilet. So, to save some money now, we pulled that toilet out, scrubbed the piss out of it (literally) and are going to reuse it. It’s a newer toilet and looked great once Neil was done with it. We just need to buy a new seat and it will be good as new.

When we get around to redoing the other bathroom we will have to figure out the toilet situation there, by either moving the wall back a few inches or rearranging the plumbing in order to be able to fit a standard sized toilet. But, we’ll come up with something when the time comes.

Happy Thanksgiving | Fall Wreath DIY

Fixing up a house is expensive and we try to save money wherever we can. One thing I love about having a house is the ability to have a different wreath for every season/holiday/event. Being the crafty person that I am, I decided not to buy any supplies, but instead work with what I had lying around.

So, here is my Dirt Cheap Fall Wreath DIY Tutorial:

Step 1: Build the wreath framework. I did this using newspaper and masking tape. Start by making a rough circle at the size you want your final wreath. Next, fold up additional newspaper pages into strips and coil those around the circle, taping the ends as you go so they stay in place, until you end up with a nice thick circular wreath frame.

This is the hardest part of the whole project. You want to squeeze and form the frame as you go until you get the shape you’re looking for, but make sure that you add enough layers to make it sturdy…otherwise it will droop over time and you’ll end up with an oval. I ended up using about 3 or 4 of the free pennysaver mini newspapers that come regularly in the mail.

Step 2: Wrap your wreath framework with something pretty. I had a long strip of fabric already cut, leftover from the edging for the quilt I did a few months ago, so I wrapped that around the wreath and taped it off at the end with more masking tape. I kept the exposed masking tape in one area so I could easily cover it up with my decorative elements.

Step 3: Add decorative elements. I had a container of bowl filler that I bought from Target a while back and some random pine cones. I didn’t have enough to completely fill the entire wreath, so I arranged them nicely along the bottom. I finished it off with some paper flowers I folded and never turned into earrings and some dried flowers from a Fall flower arrangement I bought last year. Each element I adhered in place with hot glue.

Step 4: Hang and enjoy!


TOTAL TIME: About 2 hours

Note: Due to the fact that the framework is made from newspaper I wouldn’t hang the wreath in a place where it will be directly exposed to the elements. Hang it on a porch with a roof or inside a storm door. Or…because it cost nothing you can always just let it do its thing and take it apart to reuse for something else afterwards.

Rain Rain Go Away & New Exterior Choices

For a house with a leaky roof and basement and no gutters, rain is not our friend.

It was pouring all day, so Neil strategically placed buckets and bins all around the house to catch some of the access rain in the problem areas. The buckets had to be emptied out into the yard multiple times an hour to keep up with the heavy rain fall.

Now our interior work is on hold until we have the roof replaced and basement finished. But, BIG NEWS, we are now going to redo the vinyl siding and add the portico/front porch at the same time!

Originally we weren’t going to get to the siding and front porch done until maybe next year. But our roof guy said that when he replaces the roof he’s going to have to rip off a lot of the existing siding off, so if we had a plan to replace it, now would be the time. Otherwise we would have to pay to replace the removed pieces, which wouldn’t match the white that’s there because of the age difference…and why pay for new patches, when we’re planning on replacing anyway?

We headed over to the roof/siding/decking showroom and picked out some really nice options…without must disagreement too!

Here’s the plan:

I’m not exactly sure how we’re going to do the new portico and porch. Check out the original idea here (Idea #1). Or I was thinking (Idea #2) that the porch could extend out past the large “future bay window”. That way we could add seating. But most likely we will go with Idea #1, due to cost and the fact that I don’t think Neil cares if there is the ability for seating on the front porch or not. But a girl can dream right?! =)

Either way, I’m super excited about all the exterior updates. Although it’s too bad that we did all that work to make the existing front porch look nice only to replace it a month later, but oh well.

WRKDesigns New Website Launched

WRKDesigns has launched a new website. Now we have everything in one convenient location and our blog can be found here. Please update your bookmarks and RSS subscriptions.

SPD | Printsource

My surface pattern designs will be available at the April Printsource show. Stop by the Carr and Lamb booth.

SPD | April Printsource

My surface pattern designs will be available at the April Printsource show. Stop by the Carr and Lamb booth.