Painting the Dining Room White (Shocker, I Know)

By | Room Makeovers, Wallace Woods House | 5 Comments

When I was in my mid-twenties, I distinctly remember my reaction when a boss of mine told me he was taking the day off to clean his garage. I thought that was the most pitiful thing ever. A day off to clean the garage? How depressing!!

Fast forward 10 years and that sounds like the best idea ever… LOL! And it is! I love it! My how times have changed.

Every so often I will take a few days off work to get some projects done around the house. These are like my mental health days. I know I said DIY is somewhat dead for me, and while that is true, it doesn’t mean I dislike DIY. I just don’t have the time for it anymore. But you bet I still get that buzz of adrenaline after fixing up a space with my own two hands. It’s the best feeling!

When the weather wasn’t cooperating enough to get the darn deck stained, I turned my attention to the kitchen walls. The paint on the kitchen walls is so, so dark (it’s Porter Paints “Phoenix Fossil”). Normally I dig dark paint (and I actually love this dark gray!), but in a space with a ton of big white doors and big white(ish) cabinets and weird ceiling bump-outs, the end result makes for a very chaotic aesthetic. Too many shapes and contrast popping everywhere. We needed calm. And the only way to achieve calm is to remove the chaotic—all that dark contrast.

Here is the before. There’s just soooo much going on with all of the white doors, windows and grey on the walls.
Kitchen Island Lights

Kitchen Island Lights

And here is the after. Well the almost after. Badda bing, badda boom! So much more calm! This is Sherwin Williams Pure White, which is a big change for me. I normally am a diehard Behr Ultra Pure White when it comes to white walls, but that color looks too blue in this house. I’m liking the Pure White!

Painting The Dining Room White

Painting The Dining Room White

I actually just have half the kitchen done—the eat-in dining room part—so the rest is saved for another day (or five). Yes, it took me five days to complete this sucker and if truth be told, it should get one more hit of white before I call it truly done. I’ll get there one day. 🙂

I also plan to put back up the bamboo shades, but was waiting for the paint to dry. And our favorite indoor/outdoor rug from Overstock is still holding strong! Love being able to hose it off. (Ours is the 6′ x 9′ size by the way… perfect for under a dining room table.)

One thing to note on paint—paint is NOT PRECIOUS! I think the paint companies have done a really good job at keeping us intimidated. There are so many rules with paint… not too hot, not too cold, latex vs. oil, storage rules and on and on and on. And that doesn’t even begin to get into all of the colors, types, finishes, with primer, without primers, etc. Please don’t get yourself wrapped up in all that hoopla. Keep it simple. Keep things loose. For example, I didn’t have primer and I only had one gallon of paint. I didn’t want to use up the “real color” trying to cover the gray, so I found an old can of paint in the basement that was light enough to do the job.

Painting The Dining Room White

This paint (read… not even “primer”… gasp!) was old, in a rusted out can and had been sitting out in the elements for a month. And you know what? It’s FINE! And it worked beautifully. And I actually liked that color so much I ended up using it somewhere else in the kitchen which I’ll show you soon.

Painting The Dining Room White

Paint is so much more resilient than we give it credit for. You literally cannot screw up paint in 99% of painting occasions. Trust. I have pushed paint to its limits many, many times.

Anyways, that’s the story of the painted kitchen. I’m going to have to get creative in finding some time to paint the other half (and that half has a ton of cutting in to do around cabinets) but I’ll get there! Finding time is easy when you’re doing something you love. 😉

Until next time.

Also, follow me on Instagram please? I mini blog over there all day long! It’s @gohausgo.







Is DIY Dead?

By | Craft & Create | 8 Comments

Emily Using Power Tools

When I first started blogging back in 2011, the DIY (Do It Yourself) world was exploding. Every home blogger had a DIY focus/angle to their content, home improvement stores ramped up their DIY courses, TV’s DIY Network was born and so on. DIY was absolutely everywhere.

Even myself, personally, planted my online identity firmly in the DIY space for many years. I mean, my face and first house was plastered all over DIY Magazine for a long time. And to this day, I still describe my blog as a DIY and design blog.

But overall, it appears DIY as a cornerstone to home makeovers is fizzling. And while I doubt that I will walk away from DIY totally (I just can’t quit it!), I do see myself choosing other routes other than DIY. Here are a couple of reasons why I think we’ve shifted away from the DIY life overall.

The Big Box Stores Have Better Choices Now

The Internet's Top Home Decor Picks

Image from my last post on the most popular big box items

Let’s go back to the reason why most of us DIYed—we were hoping to achieve a unique look that we just couldn’t find in regular stores. Or if we could, couldn’t afford it. DIY was definitely that for me… the big box stores just hadn’t done a good job of keeping up with the trends. And DIY was our way around that. But now? My gosh… I can walk into friggin Walmart these days and find something good. And don’t even get me started on Target. Have you all been to Lowe’s lately? They are doing such a good job! (But Home Depot, my goodness, please step it up.)

Big retailers have also done a really good job at manufacturing spendy items for less. There’s places like Riad Tile, who are doing the cement Moroccan tile look, in a really affordable way. Remember when I tried to DIY that look myself? Yea, in today’s world, there is no reason to DIY. DIYing would actually be more expensive in many of these cases now.

Thrift Stores Caught On

Goodwill Hunting

Those darn thrift stores caught on to our DIY game. Buying and refinishing old furniture is the cornerstone of DIY culture. But this only works if the thrifted furniture is inexpensive. Have you all browsed Goodwill furniture lately? They’re on to us—no longer can you grab an mid-century modern buffet for $20. It’s going to cost you at least $100. And once you paint it or refinish it, you’re often close enough to buying new.

We’ve Grown Up

Many of us were all in the same boat six years ago. We were in our mid twenties with tiny decorating budgets. But now we’re older and our pockets are a little deeper. We feel too old for IKEA. We can’t remember the last time we ate Ramen or stayed out all night. We start to value quality over quantity.

There’s No Time

Painting the Living Room

DIY is extremely time intensive. Painting a room takes me 3 days, with lots of breaks because life requires it. A professional can get it done in 4 hours. For me, personally, this is one of the reasons I have stepped away from DIY for some things. In many cases, it just doesn’t make sense for me to spend the time. And I don’t really have any extra time to spend. Someone very smart once told me, “You can always find more money, but you can’t find more time.” And because of that, I find myself hiring out more than ever before. Not because I can’t do it myself, but because I just don’t have the time to. And sometimes that really stinks for me! I mean, I still get a kick out of the satisfaction that comes with creating a thing yourself.

The OG DIYers Are On A Whole New Level Now

DIY influencers/bloggers have been at the forefront of the DIY movement since it began… teaching us along the way. And it seems like those OG DIYers went one of two ways over the years…. they either quit the DIY game OR they advanced to such an extreme level of DIY that the rest of us can’t even begin to keep up. There’s people like Sawdust Girl who has become a pro level carpenter. There’s no way I can even pretend to try to learn that skill (have you seen her work… it is amazing!!!). I’d have to hire out to even attempt to replicate some of the projects she shares. (Also, if you don’t follow her on IG, please do. She is singlehandedly turning her home into a carpenter’s dream.) Lots of DIY bloggers started simple, but now some of the are building houses and laying hardwood floors and running new electrical…. like what!? I bow down, but that just isn’t my world. I can’t even connect with that anymore.

Painting Wood Isn’t So Cool Anymore

Painting wood has been a big facet of DIY for the longest time… furniture, walls, stairs, you name it. But guess what happened in the decor world? Natural wood became really cool… and valued. And people get really ticked when you paint over beautiful wood. Ask any blogger out there… they’ve had to weather the storm that comes with painting over beautiful (and not so beautiful) wood. Also, I see people turn to natural wood pieces over painted pieces more than ever before. Like in Hommemaker’s recent bedroom reveal, when the Internet had an aneurysm over that beautiful dresser. Wait, was that just me? 🙂


Anyways, whether DIY is dead or not, there does seem to be some sort of shift that has occurred. I feel it and I’m wondering if you feel it too. If you’re a blogger, how has this shift affected your projects and how you write? And if you’re a civilian, have you shifted away from DIY? Tell me what you think!




The Internet’s Most Popular Home Decor Picks

By | Haus Hacks | 4 Comments

The Internet's Top Home Decor Picks


Like most of you, I spend a decent amount of time on blogs and Instagram checking out others’ homes. And for the last few months, I keep seeing the same few home decor items pop up over and over again. And so, by very not-scientific methods, I hereby declare these 14 things the internet’s most popular decor picks. 🙂

I’d bet good money that a few of you reading will g0, “Hey! Those are my sheets!” and so on.

1.) The Olga Rug from Wayfair—this rug has got to be the most exposed blogger-loved rug of all time. And yes, we have it too.

2.) The Fake Fiddle Leaf Fig from Target – I have no idea what’s going on with the world, but suddenly fake plants are totally acceptable. I’ve been trying out a few of my own and it’s hard to argue the convenience. And most of them look so darn real nowadays!

3.) The Big Round Brass Mirror from Target – I have been seeing this EVERYWHERE. Bathrooms, entry ways, bedrooms—it’s perfect for it all. At just $40 for a large 28″ round, it’s hard to argue its awesomeness. We used it to stage the house we recently sold.

4.) Shibori Pillows – Shibori continues to be so well-loved right now and it doesn’t apply to just pillows. Curtains, upholstery, window treatments… shibori is everywhere! This specific pillow is from Overstock.

5.) Rattan Cabinet From Ikea – It’s a perfect size for those nooks and crannies that need something, but nothing too crazy. Bloggers have been loving the texture of this piece since it came out last year.

6.) Letterboards – The first letterboards came to the scene via Letterfolk, but tons of people make them now. This specific one is from Mandy at Vintage Revivals.

7.) The Pink Scalloped Vase from Target – This terra cotta vase was a part of the Spring 2017 collection and people freaked out! It’s so pretty and looks much more expensive than it really is.

8.) The Woven Strap Chairs from World Market – My gosh, these things are everywhere and even better, World Market carries them in a bunch of different styles. The ones shown are dining chairs, but I love the lounge-y accent style too.

9.) The Nate Berkus Diamond Sheets from Target – These sheets started the whole idea behind this post. We have these sheets, our neighbors have these sheets (I mean, I assume) and let me guess, YOU have these sheets! (Also, they coordinate super well with any duvet cover and are super soft, get them!)

10.) The Serena & Lily Dip-Dyed Stools – If there’s a bathroom renovation, chances are these stools are a part of the styling. And for good reason! They’re so darn cute! I love the tone of the wood, and who could go wrong with a little modern white-dip action.

11.) Home Sweet Home Welcome Mat from Target – It’s hard to find good yet affordable outdoor welcome mat these days, but this one makes it look easy.

12.) Chelsea Double Sconce from Urban Outfitters – The more “spider-y” a light looks the better, right?

13.) Pom pom throws! Especially this two-pack for under $20 from

14.) And last but not least, the gold framed picture frames.

OK, so how did I do? Did I get everything? What is an item you keep seeing over and over again? And better yet, what do you own of the above?






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