Master Bedroom Makeover Part 4: Bedside Built-ins

Bedside Pocket
Bedside Pockets

If you’ve been following my blog and specifically the series on our master bedroom makeover, you already know that the layout of our master bedroom does not allow for any sort of bedside table or night stand. To compensate for this, we previously used little pockets on the sides of the bed for storage of glasses, lip balm, books, etc. I made the pockets several years ago and although they served the purpose for the most part, what I always desired was built-in cubbies on either side of the bed. I was so excited when my husband agreed to build them! It seemed like the perfect timing because he had already committed to installing sconces that required wiring and a light switch.

Basically, he built boxes that would be installed between the studs of the closets that bank both sides of the bed. The boxes were custom designed from scrap wood according to our individual needs. Mine was built a bit deeper than Tim’s to accommodate my alarm clock and my books. Although this meant that it impinged a bit further into my closet, I was totally okay with that because I only use this space for dresses. We painted the boxes and then added a frame around the edge after installation.

BEFORE:

You can see the wall banking the closet to the left of the bed. This is where the bedside built-in was installed. (You can also get a glimpse of my old ceiling fan before it was upcycled to more of a vintage farmhouse style.)

AFTER:

I love how Tim also incorporated outlets & a charging station into the design. I really didn’t want cords dangling all over the place and this completely solved the problem. I always charge my phone in the kitchen, but my husband keeps his beside the bed, so a USB port was needed. Tim doesn’t tend to use the full height of his cubby, but I like to put my water bottle in mine at night, so needed the extra space. We might install an additional shelf in his at some point. You can see the dimmer switch for the sconces on my side of the bed below my cubby. (We thought of putting one on each side of the bed, but decided that in our house I am almost always the first one to bed and am the only one that reads in bed, so it just made sense for me to have the switch on my side. )

I am so happy with how the bedside built-ins turned out!

Stay tuned for upcoming Master Bedroom Makeover posts on DIY throw cushions, DIY curtains and room reveals.

If you enjoy my blog….others might too! LIKE and SHARE the posts you enjoy. SUBSCRIBE to my blog and receive notifications when I create a new post!

Master Bedroom Makeover Part 3: Ceiling Fan Upcycle ~ Farmhouse Style

I’ve watched my fair share of HGTV shows and I can honestly say that ceiling fans are generally not in their bag of design tricks. I probably wouldn’t opt for a ceiling fan in my master bedroom either, but the reality is that we live in a 1921 home with no central air. We get by with a few portable air conditioners, but I literally could not survive without the added air movement created by our ceiling fan. Bottom line…it was a non-negotiable. So the only other option was to figure out a way to make it look like it belongs in our farmhouse style design. There are actually some decent options available in new fans, but our fan worked fine and there really was no reason to replace it other than the dated style.

As mentioned in my last post, this isn’t actually my fan, but a picture that I found online that closely resembles what ours looked like pre-upcycling. By the time I thought of taking a picture, mine already looked like this.

Tim dismantled the entire fan and then taped off the parts that needed to be protected from the spray paint. You can see the blue painter’s tape over the light sockets. This upcycle projects was relatively easy to do. I spray painted all of the silver pieces a matte black. I did need to do a few coats to ensure even coverage, but it was quick to paint and the dry time was short as well. I gave the blades a coat of regular white house paint and let them dry. I then used a dry brush technique to distress the blades using a combination of grey and dark brown paint. (Dry brushing is a technique that uses very little paint on a dry brush.) When dry brushing, it is important to add the paint very sparingly, work it in with the dry brush and then repeat until you get the desired look. I didn’t have brown paint on hand, so I just picked up a small bottle of all purpose crafter’s paint and it worked fine. To distress the blades even further, I used a light sandpaper to blend the colours and sand back some of the paint I had applied. Seems a bit counterproductive, but it’s how you achieve the look.

Tim reassembled the fan and replaced the old glass shades with these cool light bulb cages we found on Amazon. We added amber coloured light bulbs that I bought on clearance at Michael’s for $3 (regular $12). I honestly can’t believe how awesome it turned out!

Stay tuned for Part 4 and find out how we solved the issue of “no bedside tables”.

Master Bedroom Makeover: Part 2 Custom Wall Sconces

Initially when we were considering lighting in the alcove, I was set on pot lights. These would eliminate the need for the lamp that rested on the headboard (sometimes…when it wasn’t falling over). The issue with the room layout was that the closets banking both sides of the bed made it impossible for a nightstand of any kind. Years ago, I made bedside pocket storage for both sides of the bed to help solve this issue, but it still wasn’t ideal, as you really can’t fit a lamp in a pocket!!

It was actually Tim’s idea to mount sconces instead of pot lights. Originally, I was like “no” I really want pot lights, but the more I thought about it, the more I liked the idea. Of course, the issue with me is that I don’t just want normal store bought sconces….I wanted something original that would fit with the overall design I had in mind. Lucky for me, this wasn’t a hard sale. I found a few DIY sconces on Pinterest that I liked and Tim set to work. Although he didn’t follow this plan to a tee, this is the style he modelled ours after. We had seen some really awesome fixtures with pulleys and decided to incorporate that into the design as well.

Custom Farmhouse Style Light Sconces:

Tim constructed the sconces out of…you guessed it…scrap wood we already had. I decided on a dark stain to contrast the very white walls. We also just happened to have two old clothesline pulleys in the basement. We had removed the previous owners clothesline (from the basement rafters) when we moved in, but luckily Tim kept them. We ordered the wire and light kit from Amazon. The light sockets came in a set of four for $22.99. The cord was a bit pricey at $25.99, but there was enough for both sconces, a new fixture in the kitchen and still extra for another project. This was a relatively simple project for Tim to build, but the wiring made it a bigger project. I am honestly so lucky…my man can do anything!!

I found some amber vintage style light bulbs on clearance at Michaels. The original price was $12 each, but they were clearing them for $3, so needless to say I bought several. We tossed around several ideas and even sampled a few different “shades” for the sconces, but in the end we settled on upcycled lamp shade frames. I picked up this set of shades for $3 at the thrift store, removed all the beads and then rigged up some wire across the top to hold the “shade” in place. I must admit removing the beads was a brutal job. There must have been a million of those little suckers and all were individually beaded onto fine wire. Not only did it take me a couple of hours to remove the beads and wires, but my fingers were filthy and super sore from the tedious work and wire pokes😣. The final step was to spray paint the completed shade a matte black.

I love the way they turned out! Tim did such an amazing job with the building, staining and installation of the sconces. The amber light isn’t as bright, but is still fine for reading. I love that he put them on a dimmer switch, so that we can adjust the light depending on our needs.

Keep an eye out for my next Master Bedroom Makeover post where I’ll share how we transformed our old ceiling fan, so it would work with our new farmhouse bedroom design.

(Disclaimer: I never took a picture of my old fan before we took it all apart, but this one is very close to the original design of ours.)

Master Bedroom Makeover: Part 1

When we first moved into our home in 2008, my husband worked a night shift. Although I wanted our bedroom to look nice, I never saw it as a sanctuary. Our primary concern when painting was to create a space that allowed him to sleep during the day. At that time, a blue & brown colour combination was a thing. We opted to paint 3 walls chocolate brown and one a powder blue colour. The curtains we chose were room darkening to assist with his daytime sleep schedule. Neither of us ever spent time in our room. It was basically a sleep room. In fact, it often seemed like making the bed was a dumb idea. I would get up for work just as Tim was getting home and settling into bed and vice versa at the end of the day. And so, for 12 years, our room was a a dark dungeon-like room. Although it may not appear dark, you must keep in mind that the curtains were rarely opened because of Tim’s work schedule. I scoured my archives for before photos and this is all I could come up with. These shots show the powder blue wall, but only a glimpse of the chocolate brown walls. When Tim finally got a day shift in May of 2019, a bedroom makeover seemed appropriate.

I spent several months pondering what I wanted the new space to look like. I knew that I wanted our room to be super bright with an aura of “lightness”. In addition to wanting to paint and transform the space, we had both been complaining about restless sleeps for months. We thought that the solution might be a new king sized bed. We currently have a queen, but in all honesty, it seems cramped, especially with our dog, Hershey, in bed with us every night! I am a hot sleeper and between the “heat” and the dog, I felt like I spent most of the night thrashing around and Tim felt like he spent most of the night responding to the after shocks of my thrashing. Neither of us were sleeping well! 🤪

I finally came up with a plan. Although we weren’t really ready to purchase a King size bed yet, we knew that we would need a custom platform bed to accommodate the space in our room. The head of the bed would need to fit in the alcove between the two existing closets and although a king mattress would fit, it would be tight and Tim would need to build the bed to make it work. We decided to go ahead with the room design and build the platform and then we could just place our queen on the new platform until we decided to purchase a king mattress. And so the transformation began to unfold….

Step 1: Feature Wall Installation

You can see that Tim has already done the wiring for our new sconces!!

For many years now, I longed to transform our little alcove at the head of the bed. I envisioned a feature wall and custom lighting. One of the cool things about our 1921 unfinished basement is that at some point many decades ago, some walls were put up and they were built using….wait for it…wait for it….shiplap!! Yay! I always knew that at some point we would either reclaim and use the wood elsewhere in the house or incorporate it into our someday finished basement design. It just so happened that we removed a wall a few years ago and of course, kept all of the old shiplap. Tim measured it all out and began to construct the “puzzle” of shiplap pieces. Here is the picture of the shiplap wall pre-painting. (I actually like the randomness of the pieces and finishes, but it wasn’t the look I was going for in this space.) This also gives you a peak at the new navy wall paint.

Step 2: Priming and Painting

Of course, we knew this would not be a quick and easy paint job because we were covering the 3 existing chocolate brown walls with white! The light blue wall was going to be a combination of white and navy blue. We ended up priming everything….including the ceiling which we had painted light blue as well…Why? I don’t know. That was sure a pain to prime and paint. So, with one coat of primer and 3 coats of paint….the room began to take on a whole new look!

Stay tuned for more master bedroom projects and photos!

Those Bi-Fold Doors Have Got to Go!

Despite the fact that our home is a 1921 home, somewhere along the line there were a few “upgrades” added that seriously compromised the integrity and character of the house.  The bi-fold master bedroom doors were no exception.

Before the Bi-Fold Door Removal

bi-fold doors

French Door Duo

We went to one of my very favourite stores ~ The Old House Revival Company, and found a matching pair of French Doors for around $80 (I think, it’s a while ago since we bought them). They needed to be trimmed a bit to fit, but adjustments were minimal.  (I am so glad my husband is handy.)We gave them a fresh coat of paint (white, of course) and voila!  It is funny how something so simple can make such a dramatic difference in a room.  Like every other room in my house, it is still a work in progress.  By the time I get it all pulled together, I will probably need new bedding and will have to start all over ~ yikes…don’t tell my husband!

french closet doors

IMG_7880

I had totally planned to curtain off behind the glass to hide the contents, but haven’t gotten to it and actually like it the way it is (minus the bright orange and white striped dress, that is).