Life + Style

July 10, 2009

It's not all boatdrinks at the beach

So for those of you who think we've just been sitting around drinking fruity drinks by the pool, well, you're partly right. My family was here all last week and we had an awesome and much needed break from home renovation. I enjoyed lots of strawberry daiquiris at the cabana bar at South Litchfield and lots of Coronas and glasses of wine at home. I even let my husband off the hook for the week as well. I figured convincing him to help me host my family at our house for five days earned him enough good husband points!

Before my family came to visit, he was able to cross several projects of his honey-do list. The first was getting started on the renovations in his *office/den.

*The space previously known as my husband's office has now officially been changed to the den in order for it to feel a bit more like a room that I can use too!

Updates in the den:
  1. Tear out out existing and awkwardly placed closets

  2. Remove pointless brass and glass (classy) shelves from back wall

  3. Invite friends and family over to tear out carpet and install ply wood sub floor

  4. Hire a team of *pantry thieves to install hardwood floors.

  5. Begin a large scale built-in bookshelf/cabinet project to house our newly acquired and steady growing collection of books.

  6. Find a home for the adopted dinosaur of a desk that came with the house. They left be behind the desk but not the gnome. Seriously, I would have rather taken the gnome.

*Pantry Thieves: So you might remember me complaining a few weeks ago that the guys we hired to install our hardwood floors in the living room moved slower than out-of-state minivans traveling through Myrtle Beach on the Fourth of July weekend. Well, they might be slow but they rock at installing flooring for a deal so we scheduled them to come back to finish up installation in the den. It was only then that I realized the reason they worked so slow last time was because they were hungry. I had no idea that on top of paying these workers we were expected to feed them as well. Luckily this go around I had a freshly stocked pantry. I hope these boys enjoyed their can of corn and cream of chicken soup because they sure did help themselves to it! Not exactly sure what they made with that, but whatever it was did wonders for their speed!

Here are a few before and during pics to keep you satisfied until we come up with an after.

I mean seriously, this was an OFFICE. A place to get work done. How on earth did anyone ever get anything done in this room? In the South, we're raised to always say something positive, so here goes: My goodness, how clever the previous owner must have been to fit so many of her things into just one room!

Enough of that, it's time to say goodbye to those useless closets and ugly shelving!

A wise uncle of my husband's recently said that sometimes you have to take a step back to move a step forward. Very prophetic. I think he was talking about careers, relationships and life, but it clearly applies to our den renovation as well. Luckily I knew from our little half bath project back in May that sometimes even the most awful demolition mess cleans up nicely and is worth it in the end.We nailed down pieces of plywood for the sub flooring to cover the whole room. The desk you see is original to the home. We didn't ask for it but I think it was just too big to fit through the door. It's not my favorite but will do for now. Our gorgeous oak floors were laid down board by board.You can see there is layer of paper that is placed on top of the sub floor directly underneath the hardwood. It's #15 tar paper used as a moisture barrier.

After eliminating the awkward closets and existing shelving unit in the back corner of the den, we had a whole lot of workable space added to the room. Matthew decided it was the perfect spot to build built in bookshelves with some leftover pecky cypress wood he'd been saving. I'm not sure if the bottom is going to be bookshelves or cabinets? What do y'all think? I'm a HUGE fan of storage that stays behind closed doors. Some things are necessary but look cluttered no matter how cute the basket is that you place it in. A cabinet would be a great place to hide electrical cords or batteries or office supplies and such. I'd like to keep the shelves a clutter free space to highlight artwork, photographs and books. I'm pretty sure I can convince the builder to get on board with this!

Things we still need to finish:
  1. Choose a paint color for the walls (and paint them, duh)

  2. Finish the built-ins

  3. Add baseboards

  4. Build paneling on the walls (like in the living room and dining room)

  5. Acquire furniture (Notice I didn't say buy new furniture. That's because we are more than happy to accept your used furniture donations since there is no budget to buy anything new)

  6. Decorate (this is actually the only step that I'll be actively participating in)!

Don't worry, more to come!



  1. That room has actual moisture barrier product compared to the tar paper used throughout the rest of the house.

  2. Thanks for that info baby! Can you please explain the difference between a moisture barrier product and tar paper? Please!!!


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