My $100 family room makeover is moving forward at light speed. We’re three weeks into the four week challenge now which means crunch time!
I’ve been slowly chipping away at the multitude of eyesores in the room. Last year I painted our sliding glass doors to hide the ugly aluminum frame. Last week, I added a new statement-making mantel. This last week I took care of two things that I have hated about our house since we moved in eight years ago. Seriously. This stuff was long overdue. These updates may not be as splashy and pretty as a new piece of art or other decor, but they made such a huge difference in the room. And unlike a cute bit of DIY decor, this stuff is going to be here a long time. (Rather than a few months until I get a wild idea to rearrange everything!)
So what did I do?
First up, I finally added trim to our built-in shelves. There’s a long bookcase under the peninsula that separates our kitchen and family room.
It’s great to have a bit of storage there, but the shelves were so ugly. I painted them white soon after we moved in but that didn’t hide the fact they looked a lot like kitchen cabinets without doors and not at all like actual built-in shelves. Fixing them up wasn’t hard, just tedious. I removed the trim and facing that was previously there and replaced it with new trim that covered the old toe kick – one of the main features that screamed cabinets!
Then I added baseboards and shoe molding around the entire peninsula. Smoothed out all the holes and rough spots with wood filler and caulk and gave it a fresh coat of bright white paint.
I don’t know that pictures adequately show the difference this made, but it is night and day. The whole room looks less tired and worn down and much more bright and fresh. And I am just itching to get these babies loaded back up – but in a much more neat and orderly fashion!
My second project this week was even more exciting. See that big 1970s intercom in the middle of the wall?
I hate it. There are at least a dozen speakers scattered throughout our house which means there’s a nice eyesore on the wall of every single room. (And really our house is a 1600 square foot ranch. You can pretty easily hear someone from side of the house to the other. Why the need for intercom speakers every five feet?)
As you can see, it used to be even worse.
That huge box under the main intercom? That’s a pull-out 8 track player. (Sadly it was broken). A few years ago, I removed the 8 track player and painted the intercom to match the walls in hopes of camoflauging it. It was an improvement, but the intercom was still pretty ugly. Well, I decided I couldn’t take it anymore. That intercom was coming out. Now I’m not an electrician so I’m certainly not going to try to provide a tutorial on how to remove your own ugly intercom. But I can say that if you do, you won’t be sorry
Of course, once I had managed to get the thing out, I was left with a big hole in the wall. Not necessarily an improvement. But our walls are old 70s wood paneling painted white. And while the white paint is a vast improvement, I still want to replace them with drywall at some point. So for now, the hole is totally covered by an awesomely huge piece of art. (Can’t wait to share it next week in the big reveal. It’s actually an oldie that used to be in a different spot in our house years ago and is absolutely perfect for the big white wall over the couch.)
And there you have it. Two major improvements to my worn out family room. Not the most glamorous DIY projects, but two that were totally worth it and totally elevated the room.
So here’s how the budget is looking so far:
Bookshelf trim: $25.50
Paint: free, leftover from other projects
Removing intercom: free
So when we add in last week’s $53 mantel, the total so far is $78.50. And funny enough, so far my entire budget has gone to wood for various projects.
Next Wednesday is the big day. Reckoning day! I mean reveal day! Where we all get to show off what we managed to accomplish in only four weeks for $100. I’m super excited to show off my own room and I definitely can’t wait to see what everyone else manages to pull off!
See everything related to my $100 family room makeover right here:
Week 1: Before pictures and plans
Week 2: DIY rustic fireplace mantel
Week 3:Getting rid of the ugly
In the meantime, check out everyone else’s week 3 updates at the link below!