Budget Breakdown: How much does it cost to furnish a room?

ORC: Week 3 – Living Room Transformation

How to decorate a room in 6 weeks!  That’s the main goal of the One Room Challenge.  My ORC transformation room is my Living Room.

The 3rd full week of the One Room Challenge is now complete.  Quite honestly, I’ve had a busy week (being sick and then with work).  So, unfortunately, there aren’t too many visible signs that things are progressing on the room.  I am hopeful, however.  Most of my fabrics have been ordered and are either in transit or are already at my workrooms.  Here are a few of my workroom projects:

For my birthday in January, I bought myself this pair of George II style Gainsborough Library chairs.

George II style Gainsborough chairs

I found them online two years ago and nearly gasped in delight.  The Rose Tarlow “Kent” chair is, in my opinion, a gorgeous speciman of art with those dark scrolling legs!  I fell in love with this chair 25 years ago and never thought that I’d be lucky enough to own one (let alone two) of my very own.  For two years, I stalked them and imagined them in this room.  Finally, in January, I made the decision.  This is how I decided to bite the bullet.  I asked myself “would I be upset if someone else bought these chairs?” – after hemming and hawing to myself – I agreed that I would be very upset with myself if I didn’t buy them.  So, I contacted the owner, Erin at Erin Lane Estate in Oakland, CA  to ask a few more details.  She and her husband, Carlos, were extremely gracious over the phone and answered all of my questions.  I very much enjoyed working with them and highly recommend that you go to their gorgeous website and see what other goodies they have.  I hope to work with them again – as I had such a great experience.

These Gainsborough Library chairs never made it to my house – they were shipped directly to my upholsterer.  She’s going to reupholster them in Jim Thompson’s “Paradise Vine, pink” linen.

Jim Thompson’s “Paradise Vine, pink”

For my two existing upholstered chairs, I will have them reupholstered in Pindler & Pindler’s “Zanzibar, pink” zebra cotton and ornament the skirt with a sherbert pastel tassel fringe.

Existing yellow chair to be reupholstered in this “Zambezi, pink” zebra print fabric
“Zambezie, petal”

Here are a few other fabrics going into the space:

“Tao Fretwork, jade”
“Nirvana Shadow, pink”

And lastly – one of my surprise favorites for the room is this F. Schumacher’s “Yangtze River, aqua” fabric.  It, literally, was a fabric I picked up very last minute for a Client project.  But, after realizing it wasn’t going to work for her, I noticed the colors worked really well with my scheme!  So, surprise!  I’m going to have a couple of pillows made with it and place them on the pink zebra chairs.

F.Schumacher’s “Yangtze River, aqua” will be made into pillows for my pink upholstered chairs.

The only problem is that the fabric is back-ordered and won’t be shipping until the end of May.  So, it looks like I’ll have to post-pone my professional shots until some time in June….

The only real noticeable improvements taken in the Living Room redecoration this week was the trim color.  That’s a minor drama in itself.  But, long story short, the handyman that swore he was going to come on Friday to give me a final quote didn’t show, nor did he answer my calls and texts.  So Saturday morning I hopped over to the BenMoore store and bought my gallon of  “Chantilly Lace” paint and a good trim brush.  Thinking that I’d probably have to paint all of the trim myself, I spent Sunday afternoon taping off the fireplace area and a bit of Monday beginning to put the first coat on.  However, after a few hours of tedious trim painting, I had to quit.  I resolved to call one of my reliable painters.

Mike and his team answered my painting prayers.  Mike came over Tuesday evening to give me a quote.  And, by Wednesday afternoon, he and James came over to begin repair work on my trim.  Mike and his crew arrived bright and early this morning and applied the first coat of semi-glossy paint on my trim.  Already the difference is staggering!  I can’t wait for them to finish tomorrow.  

So that wraps up Week 3 for me!  Go ahead and see what the Featured Designers are up to HERE and the other Guest Designers HERE.

One Room Challenge, guest participant

Thanks for following along!  Please don’t forget to leave me your comments!

Until next week – Cheers!

Bathroom Renovation: One Room Challenge – Week 5

Welcome to Week 5 of our Bathroom Renovation in the 2017 Fall One Room Challenge event!

As you may remember, I am transforming and renovating an outdated and dysfunctional bathroom into a sophisticated, functional, and inviting guest bath for my discerning client, Rebekah.

If you are new to this blog and would like to read about the Bathroom Renovation’s progress – read the earlier blog posts:
Week 1 here – where I show you the before photos of the lurid space and provide you with the mood board that I gave my Client.  The, demolition begins!
Week 2 – design elements are refined, wall elevations are created, and the contractor prepares the space for tile installation.
Week 3, tile and more tile!
Week 4, okay, sooooo I skipped writing a blog post last week!  Sorry!  But absolutely NOTHING happened in Week 4!  We were waiting on the wallpaper hanger.  I probably should’ve written a blog, to help with SEO, keep others interested in knowing more about my project.  But seriously, there were crickets chirping in there last week!

Sooooo…..welcome to Week 5!

Wallpaper is ready to be hung!
Week 5 was great!  I’m not gonna lie.  We got a lot of items checked off my list and the bathroom is starting to look more and more like a brand new, shiny penny.
Tub panel in initial stages of completion

1.  Bathtub Wood Panel.  I haven’t really talked about this add-on project, but it’s a sensational idea and turned out fabulously!  The circa 1940s style tub was looking a bit too…..flashy? dated? Okay, ugly for the likes of this soon-to-be pretty new bathroom!

The dated tub style
I didn’t want the tub to be the ugly step-sister in the room!  So, we decided to hide it with a wood panel!  I found a great visual on Pinterest for my Client and contractor.  The concept is surprisingly simple, but the results are HUGE!  It’s still a work in progress.  We’re missing the marble slab that will hold on top of the wood panel.  We were originally planning on using 3 white marble thresholds.  However, my contractor isn’t keen on having seams in the marble.  So, he’s going to have a single narrow slab of marble fabricated for the top.
Wood fillets added to outside frame. Creates a prettier and more traditional look to the tub panel.
The panel began as a flat sheet of wood, cut to size.  1X4 wood planks were cut to create the frame.  And filler pieces created the more graciously detailed traditional look I was after.  When painted gloss white……TA-DAH!  Totally FAB!

Wood panel installed on tub face in bathroom
2.  All trims were painted gloss white and the ceiling was painted a flat white.  The walls were primed with 2 coats of Zinzer 123.  We’re now ready for wallpaper!
Installed panel, now painted in a gloss white finish
Nelson rolling on the Zinser

3.  Wallpaper installation.  The bathroom area is tiny!  The Thibaut “Bahia”  wallpaper went up very quickly.  And completely transformed the look of the room almost instantaneously!  Seriously though, don’t you agree?  The wallpaper has a beige ground with a darker brown metallic starburst.  The metallic starburst color replicates the metallic browns in the specialty tile in the tub/shower area.

1st roll of wallpaper – GOING UP!

Bathroom wallpaper installation is complete.

4.  Electrical.  You may recall that the previous bathroom only had one switch, which turned on the lights.  There wasn’t a switch to the exhaust fan (whaaa?  Then, how did it work? It didn’t).   There wasn’t even an outlet for a guest to plug in her hairdryer!  (Say it ain’t so Barclay!). I KNOW!!

Visual Comfort “Etoile” sconces are installed
So, the electrician came in, installed all of the plugs, and also installed the two new Visual Comfort “Etoile” sconces in burnished gold!
And now that Week 5 is over, I’m very very nervous that we won’t be able to finish this Bathroom Renovation Challenge on time.  We’re waiting for the sink vanity to be finished.  Once it’s finished, a myriad of small tasks will need to be accomplished AND we have to get it professionally photographed.  Unfortunately, I feel certain that (despite being granted an additional week to finish by the ORC committee) we won’t hit the deadline.  But, fingers crossed. I’m still hopeful.  Let’s send some positive juju vibes to my furniture maker!  We need the vanity to complete my bathroom renovation!
Here’s my LIST going forward – let’s see what I can knock out by next week!
1.  Order niche glass and glass clips – install
2.  Vanity arrives – install
3.  Baseboard underneath vanity – install
4.  Order marble vanity top, have cut, attach undermount sink – install
5.  Install shower fixtures, new toilet, sink fixtures
6.  Install towel rod
7.  Install mirror
8.  Have client approve and order artwork to be placed over toilet (thinking tonal landscape images 2 or 3 framed)
9.  Monogram towels
10.  Photograph space
There are lots of other Guest Participants in the Fall 2017 One Room Challenge event.  If you’d like to see progress on some of the other bloggers’s rooms – click HERE to take you to that page.  The main group of blogger/renovators progress can be see HERE.
Thanks everyone for reading my bathroom renovation progress!  I’d love to hear your feedback on the project! (okay, that’s sort of a shameless way of asking you to give me happy comments!)
Until next week!

Bathroom Renovation: One Room Challenge – Week 2

2D Rendering of Bathroom Renovation Elevation

Are we ready everyone?  It’s Week 2 of the Bathroom Renovation for the Fall 2017 One Room Challenge!  And, guess what?  We’re plowing ahead and making great progress this week.

To recap, I’m an interior designer living in Atlanta and I’ve just started a bathroom renovation for my client, Rebekah.  She was kind enough to let me blog about this process (at the very last minute), so I’m hoping that we will be able to move quickly and successfully through the first phase of this challenge.  If you want to read my blog post from Week 1 Challenge , click here.

DEMOLITION DAYS:Demolition of Bathroom space demolition of bathroom space  

So, this past week we started her bathroom renovation project.

My contractor brought in a couple of guys to work in this tiny 4×8 space (not including the tub) to knock out the existing tile on the bathroom walls, shower/tub walls, and floor.  I think it was 95 degrees outside during the two demolition days.  No fan was allowed in the space because it would spread more dust and dirt around.  So, my poor guys had to tough it out.old toilet, now outside of house

No surprise.  We encountered a few “bummers” during demolition.  If you’ve ever done a renovation, you know what I’m talking about.  You hope and pray that whatever is lurking behind those walls is harmless, but, inevitably, something nasty pops up and “bums you out”!  Well, we had a little of that going on last week.Wall tile and medicine cabinet removed

The first bummer was the bathroom’s SUB-FLOOR (or what was left of it).  But, I anticipated that we’d probably have to replace the wood sub-floor (due to rot or age) and warned my client of this.  However,  (surprise, surprise!), in our case, the sub-floor wasn’t even wood – it was CEMENT!  Well, that threw us all for a little loop!   The cement was practically sand it was so worn down.  My contractor, Emilio, quickly and efficiently resolved that problem by chiseling out what was left of the existing cement sub-floor and replacing it with a new sub-floor with moisture barrier.

The next issue, however, really bummed me out as I could see that it was going to affect my re-design.yellow of existing tub

When the contractor removed all of the existing shower/tub tile, we could see that the “WHITE” tub was actually a YELLOW tub!  The previous owners had sprayed the original yellow tub  – white!  This was a problem for me because there was about 2 inches of yellow on the top face of the tub.  How the HECK was I supposed to mask that and pretend the yellow never existed??  I had to bring in Rebekah immediately and try to find a solution.  We had 3 options:

  1. Replace the existing tub with a new one.  This would be time-consuming AND costly.
  2. Re-surface the tub and make it all white.  Again, time-consuming and costly (although clearly not as costly as a new tub).  OR
  3. Build up the walls with enough layers of sheet rock + tile + sealant – to safely hide the existing yellow ground peeking out.

It was a no-brainer.  Rebekah went with option #3.  And, Emilio added a total of 3 layers of sheet rock to build up the back wall!  (yikes – that’s a lot of sheet rock!)  So, happily, crisis averted.


With the demolition of the bathroom behind us, we are ready to pick-up speed and start putting the space back together.  This process takes a lot of juggling with tradesmen to get it right and keep the wheels churning.  Before our contractor can continue putting the walls back in, we needed the plumber to come out and update our shower fixtures – raise the shower head, re-plumb the sink faucet, etc..plumber working on the tub fixtures

Rob, the plumber, came in – did his handiwork in a short matter of hours then left us.  Done!  Rob will make a re-appearance later on! (possibly Week 5).  He will need to install the toilet and sink fixtures for us (after the wallpaper hanger comes in).

Next up – the electrician!  Julio is our amazing electrician for this bathroom renovation.  The existing bathroom only had one switch.  This switch turned on the one light fixture and that was it.  I need to mention that there is also a fan vent in the bathroom.  A fan that doesn’t work and doesn’t have a switch for it either.  Odd.Electrician measuring exact spot for sconces

Julio spent maybe a day with us.  His job was pretty important for the final success of this renovation because this bathroom is currently not very functional.  There are no outlets in the space.  So, if you were a guest – you wouldn’t be able to blow-dry hour hair in here or use any appliance that needs to be plugged in.  Also, the room is very dark.Electrician adding sconces

We’re removing the dated overhead sconce and replacing it with a pair of sconces.  We’re also adding a can light to the shower area, so that guests can see better when taking a tub or shower. Electrician adding can light to bathroom renovation project Lastly, we needed Julio to hook up the fan vent so that one could just turn it on with a flick of a switch (basically, connect that bad boy for ventilation!).

So, all of this was completed last week.  Somehow, when I write it down it doesn’t sound like a lot – but, it was.  Prepping the space for tile takes time and patience.  But, we’re in a good spot now – we’re ready for the tile and the pretty to begin!can lights added to shower areashower area with new niche

Rebekah and I made our final selections for tile.  We’ve ordered a very pretty Jeffery Court mosaic for the feature wall in the tub area.Homeowner selecting tile for her bathroom renovation project  With the exception of the niche, the remaining tile in the bathroom will be white carrera marble.  For the niche area, we hoped to use the Jeffrey Court mosaic, however, it’s pretty expensive.  bathroom schemeSo, we had 2 options – a beige glass subway tile or an antiqued mirror subway tile.jeffrey court mosaic with glass subway tile  Once again, when Rebekah and I saw the mirror tile – it was a no-brainer!  The niche HAD to be the mirror tile!  It will add a bit of glamour and sparkle to this fun bathroom renovation project.  We were so excited to find the mirror subway tile.  It added a little pep to our step last week!mirror subway tiles

Stay tuned for next week!  Tile and more tile!  It should be fun – the progress photos will really feel like things are coming together.

If you’d like to see some other One Room Challenge spaces, click here!  But, otherwise, I’d love to hear your feedback!  How would you have handled the yellow tub fiasco?  Did we do the right thing?

Cheers!  Barclay



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Budget Breakdown:
How Much Does it Cost to Furnish a Room?