• Kara Cushway

Home Updates: March 2020

I thought I’d hop on the blog and do a brief post sharing some of the before-and-after photos of projects I’ve done around the house in the past 5 or so weeks. My husband, Kyle, was away for the entire month of March doing training for his job, and I always like to have projects planned to improve the house in some way while he’s gone. Really, it’s just to keep myself occupied, since, as military spouses everywhere will tell you, it sucks when your spouse is gone. The fact that it improved the house is just a bonus.

Highly technical shiplap-groove paintbrush.

I had a few big projects to supervise while he was gone, two of which I set myself, and one that was sort of a necessary home improvement project that we’ve been waiting around since January to finish, due to insurance and red tape.

Isle of Pines (L) and Hunt Club (R) both by Sherwin Williams
The worst possible lighting for a color comparison photo - Isle of Pines (L) vs. Hunt Club (R). Both by SW.

The two projects I set myself were painting projects – an accent wall and the front door (interior). Since we bought our house back in November of 2019, we’ve had to patch a few holes in this particular wall, from where the flipper nailed in a bunch of tiny wall art. (I have strong feelings about tiny wall art. Basically, it’s the worst. See if you can spot all the patches in the before photo below.) We painted over the patched holes, but the paint was matte compared to the rest of the wall, and I wanted it to be uniform; I also had a vision for an accent wall that was totally different from anything else in the (mostly gray and white) house, so I chose to go with a beautiful dark green with a subtle blue undertone. In the color sample photo above you can see the two options I chose from: Isle of Pines (a bit too Green Bay Packers for what I was aiming for) and Hunt Club (elegant, understated). Here's a before and after of the dining room wall (and peep the dishwasher chillin' in the dining room because of the kitchen floor fiasco!):

I've got a few more plans for the dining room that may or may not come to fruition in this house - I'd love to get a new dining table and chairs, and possibly swap out that interesting light fixture for something a little more... well, less.

For the inside of the front door, I just wanted to match to the rest of the doors in our house, which are all pure black, and if I do say so myself, it looks like it was always supposed to be black:

Another project I'll probably tackle during our extended stint at home is spraying out the mirror frame to the left of the front door. I painted it an off-white when we had gray walls in our last home, but now that the walls are white, I'm thinking I'd like to do something that contrasts with the white a bit more.

Color comparison - new vinyl laid on top of the old gray laminate.

The third project was new floors, as you have probably already noted from the before/after pictures above. I had hoped that we could have the floors done before Kyle got home from his training, and as luck would have it, I was able to schedule it so that the flooring was finished on the day he returned home.

Downstairs bathroom was outta commission for 3 months - but look at the tile with the new flooring!

(To fill you in, and to keep a long story short, we had a dishwasher leak from faulty installation that ruined flooring in the kitchen and adjacent bathroom. Thus, new floors.) Below is a before picture of the living room (spot the boxes of new flooring to the left) with the newly-painted black door, and a couple of in-progress photos from the flooring redo.

The flooring we chose was a mid-tone wood-look vinyl, and I have to say it brightened up the house considerably compared to the gray laminate that was there before - and living in the cloudy PNW, anything that brightens up your home is a plus! Since we knew we'd be getting this specific color flooring, I based my color choice for the green dining room accent wall off of that, knowing a deep jewel green would look great with the mid-tone vinyl.

Can you believe there used to be NO hearth here?

My personal favorite part of the flooring project is this hearth. We don't have a functioning fireplace currently (another project for the near future), but we wanted to have the option to make it functional, which is why we had our crew lay these awesome black hex tiles.

Bits loves the new hearth! ... Or does she?

Thanks so much for stopping by and reading about the updates! If you have any questions about specific materials, feel free to drop it in the comments section down below! I'd be more than happy to share the links to all the materials we used in our projects. Hope you're all staying safe at home!


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