So now that the house cat is out of it’s bag (?), I need help with decorating!!

You see, I don’t know how to dress my own self (remember the inside out skirt!), let alone decorate decorate a 2,000 sq. ft. house!


Umm…retro chic??

It’s so not in me.

PROOF?  I wear brown with black.  White after Labor Day.  The motif in our current house is “Toddler Toy Chic.”  I’ve owned the same set of towels for 10 years.  <-not a joke.  We now have a total of 2!  Put towels on the list.

I like what I like when I see it, but I can’t imagine things all together (that doesn’t make sense – neither does my fashion sense).

So that’s why I’m calling out for help!  One room at a time.

Today, I’ll show you the 1950s bedrooms!





Henry’s Room



Clara’s Room



Kinda sad, but there’s some potential that the pictures really can’t show!!  Here’s the order in which I’d like to revamp:

Tear Down Wallpaper

The wallpaper just has to go!!  Not only is it hideous, but it’s crackling and peeling above the (soon to be removed) copper heating system in all of the rooms.


No.  Just no.

The sad thing is that I have no earthly clue how to remove it.  A Google search is in order (and any tips you might have!)


After the wallpaper is torn down, fresh paint is in order!  (side story – the only two times when we’ve had to paint in the past, I’ve conveniently been pregnant and couldn’t help.  Can’t use that card this time.  Drat!)

As for the color, I know we’ll probably go with Valspar paint.  I looked around their site and they have SO many options and suggestions as to what goes together.



I just want something neutral (I think) in our bedroom.  Either something out of the Warm White collection or I’ll go complete opposite and paint it pumpkin orange or neon purple or something.

Henry/Clara’s Rooms



For the kid’s rooms, I know I want some color, as all of their furniture is stark white.  But I don’t want it to be your typical “blue for boy, purple for girl” look.  Something with a gray base and slight touch of color.

New Bedroom Furniture (for Master)

I’ve just started looking around, but I really love the look of Laura Ashley bedroom furniture sets!  In particular, I like the style of these two sets for the Master:



Our old bedroom suite is dark cherry, and while I still love it, I don’t think it would go well with the color of the floors.  I also want some color on the walls (scratch what I said above about neutral walls!) and white furniture would go so well with that.  I clearly need help – I can’t stick with a plan!  I did read an article about painting your furniture, but I’m not sure I’m up for that – thoughts of paint flecks crackling off make me weary.

New Light Fixtures

They have to to go.  We actually just bought this fan for our room and the front living room – I kind of love it.


And we need two light fixtures for the kids’ rooms.

Take Down Window Thingies

What are these?!!?!?


They must go!  Anyone want them?

Put Up Curtains

Luckily, my mother-in-law is a master seamstress, so I’m hoping to enlist her help with any curtains that need to be made.  She sews many of the costumes for the local theater shows – she actually created my Tiger Lily costume!


(If you’re reading, Catherine, I’ll pay you in more grandbabies!)


Phew.  A pretty good Lindsay’s list!

So I think those changes will help the bedrooms tremendously!  I’ll show you more rooms next week!

Anyone want to come help???  I’m serious – we’re having a workday tomorrow!

QUESTION:  Have you ever remodeled a house?  Any tips for getting wallpaper off?  Any design tips in general?  HELP!


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  1. Ewwwwww on the wall paper. Soaking the paper in hot/warm water (using sponges) will do wonders for being able to peel it. Might need something else for the glue residue that could get left behind. Love the idea of blue/purple with gray base for the kids rooms. Also, love the fans you chose! The shutter window thingies are hideous. So glad they are going!

  2. Be careful with Valspar paint. I used it to paint my bedroom and it took weeks for the smell to get out, it was really strong. We even used diffrent remidies trying to get the smell our but to no prevail. The paint also easily scratched off the wall if a wire was rubbing agaisnt it or somthing scratched it.

  3. I would say number 1 is get the wall paper off and paint on the walls. You will be amazed at how much that will change a house!!! And the wood floors you have are AWESOME! I also changed all my fixtures right away (lights, door knobs, cabinet knobs, etc..) I know that sounds like an insignificant thing but for me it really helped me stamp my personaility on the house early. Paint and new fixtures did wonders!!

  4. I loveeeeeee decorating. Love! We redid our apartment when we moved in and it was insane but so worth it. Sites for inspiration: Young House Love, Apartment Therapy and Pinterest. For the kids rooms, you said you wanted to do gray maybe, and if their things are white, you could do yellow or blue – or really any color looks awesome but I think yellow is gender neutral and super class-ay. For your bedroom, pick a calming color like blue or green or something that makes you say “Ahhh, sanctuary.” I would say the #1 thing with paint is to make sure you see the color in both artificial and natural light because it will look so much different, and can help you decide if you like it. We went with this cool yellow for one of our bedrooms but we painted during the day and when you turn the overhead light on at night, it’s like, macaroni & cheese bright. It always makes me hungry. But blabbering aside, congrats!!!! So exciting for your family :)

  5. Ah congratulations!! So exciting to be moving to a new spot…it’s like starting over again!! :)

    I won’t be much help because… I cannot dress myself either. Seriously I am with ya on, um, not being a fashionista. It’s okay though. We can just wear awesome workout clothes all the time! ;)

    Good luck with all the decorating..looks like you have a fun project house on your hands! Can’t wait to hear more about it!

  6. omg girl we have wallpaper that needs to go to. I still to share more pics of our house and how our remodeling is going, it has been awhile.
    We still have so many house projects to do ;)
    we can be each others cheering section!

  7. Yay!! Congrats!! wallpaper removal sucks…there’s no way around pretending it is not. I did it, when I had a house (sniff. hope to own again soon!!), and it is a pain in the a&&! But it is so worth it. What we did was take downy fabric softener (yes, really) white vinegar and mixed it with warm water and you can use spray bottles or we used one of those bigger pump spray thingies for watering gardens and just douse the walls with it as the downy in the liquid helps soften the glue. Scrape it all down, wash the walls and then you can paint! good luck!!

  8. What ARE those window things?? I actually like them but I’d only want them in a book room I’d already decorated in a totally weird way, all to match those crazy window things. Clearly, I won’t be much help decorating.

  9. I’ve been spending more time on pinterest recently for this very reason – looking for inspiration. Not that you need to spend more time on digital devices, but it might help you.

    And I go to home depot and bring back lots of paint samples. Paint makes a huge difference and is relatively cheap. I LOVE color – bold & bright!

  10. I moved into my 97 year old house 3 years ago and the whole house was beige!! I’m still redecorating! We also had to remodel the bathroom because it was the size of a closet. I’m not kidding!! I have an obsession with blue… So many of our rooms ended up with some sort of blue! But we like neutral colors so we paired it with tans and chocolate browns… And the dining room is a sage green. I love the look of accent walls in a brighter or darker color and chalkboard paint is really cool in kids’ rooms, you can even make it magnetic :)

  11. We are just finishing up week 1 in our new home that is under construction as we are living in it. Very stressful, but you’ve for the right idea with one room at a time. Decorating and changing a house that has so many nos is overwhelming, but what I’ve found helpful is to pick 2 thing that I really like for a room and use it as design inspiration. It could be a rug, vase, painting, whatever. There aren’t really any rights or wrongs because it’s your house so it can look like whatever you’d like it to.

    Good luck!

  12. Yay on the new house! Congrats! I really like the hardwood floors, those are always my favourite:)
    And I’d definitely stick with neutral colour on the wall and then with things like couch, pillow, paintings, etc. add in a pop of bright colour! I love the looks of rooms like that.

  13. Congrats on the new place! I see TONS of potential!

    I agree with the comments on the wallpaper – definitely use the water and let it soak in. But, if you have a lot to remove, it might be worth it to invest in a steamer – you could probably get one used on Craigslist or something, too – http://www.homedepot.com/buy/decor/wallpaper/wagner/wallpaper-steamer-28295.html#.UDeeHMFmSQw.

    Also, going with the neutral tones for the bedrooms is a good call. We originally did stripes in my daughter’s room, but if you ever want to change it I don’t recommend it, they are a beast to paint over! We recently went with a neutral light green color for her room and a medium tone brown for our room (more blue than red undertones) and it matches just about any color of bedroom set you have.

    We have completely redone our house and basement so if you have more questions feel free to email me!

  14. Check out HGTV.com. They have lots of tips (and videos) explaining basic DIY stuff. I know for wallpaper – use a spray bottle filled with water and a little dish soap. Saturate the wallpaper. It should peel off easily after that. I love the colors for the kids room. Don’t be afraid to put some color on the master wall! We painted ours a robin’s egg blue and it makes me happy all the time. Our furniture is white, so the room is very light and airy. If you are scared to go too wild, use linens and art work to add lots of color. :) Enjoy

  15. We refinished our first house, and it was a lot of work- but so much fun! I’m not great at decorating either, but you’ve got the basics- new paint, fresh colors, I’m sure it will look awesome. Wish I was nearby- I’d be happy to come help you paint! :)

  16. I am not so good at home decorating and JUST finally started hanging up some artwork this summer (we’ve had the house almost 2 years). We had to remove wallpaper in two rooms and still have one to go.
    I know that someone recommended DIF- and I agree- Use it! Buy a little scorer (it will probably be right next to the Dif) and USE it. It makes a big difference. Spray the dif and let it SOAK IN (this was hard for me, I want to jump right in).
    Good luck with your big blank canvas!!

  17. Congrats on the house!! My best advice is to check out This Old House’s website – they have everything; tips from their pro’s on how to do certain home improvement things, to forum boards where you can most likely find any answers you need. It looks like it has good bones!

    In terms of decorating, scour Pinterest for ideas. It’s my favorite site to use!

    1. Yes …. I agree. Then again, there are so many fantastic online sites and blogs to read and help you along. Do not forget APARTMENT THERAPY Lindsay. The best of the best. So many brillant ideas. Ohmy. I wish I could send you the little kid (I think it was a boy) room with the ferris wheel!!!! Just amazing. I plan to buy that mural and put it in my kitchen.

      Only advice …. {{please}} …. do not decorate with (ANY!!!) browns or shades of the beige family. Fugly + double ick. Depressing too.

      I can visualize your kitchen in all whites, blues and some nice greens!

      ENJOY the makeovers. It will be fun!

  18. Hahahahaha my #1 comment was going to be remove those wooden things on the windows!!! I’ve never had to decorate – I move so often and rent that I’ve never even painted! So I am basically useless. But I do watch HGTV Design Star – go with semi-neutral colors and then add pops of color with things like pillows and accessories! Haha that’s all I got. Good luck!

  19. congrats on your new house! how exciting! i have no decorating bones in me at all. we bought a brand new house and kept everything original. i do love your comment that you will pay your MIL in more grand-babies!

  20. So happy you have your dream house. As for decorating, I’m horrible since I go by the less is more, minimalist lifestyle. Although I LOVE color I tend to have odds and ends in furniture and only what fits our needs. Have fun!

  21. For the wallpaper- there are a number of things you can do (I used to love helping my mom take it down.. yes I am weird)…

    You can rent a steamer which will help dissolve the glue –

    They also sell a gel called DIF – which you can sponge on to the paper. FIrst you will buy this thing that kind of perforates the paper.. and put the gel on.. it helps dissolve the glue as well!

  22. I haven’t remodeled a house but we bought/moved into a new house in June so I understand the repainting, redecorating, etc. side of things–and I’m severely lacking in skills in that area too haha Just remember that it’s YOUR home and you can do whatever you like with it, plus these homes are just temporary in the scheme of things anyway :)

  23. I personally like mostly neutrals with pops of color via accent walls or the decor. I do like some bright in the kids rooms though. For fun. Wall paper – get a spray bottle and fill it with water. Spray the HECK out of the wall one small section at a time and use a putty knife to scrape it away. Let’s just say I did A LOT of this during my pregnancy with Makenzie when we remodeled our entire upstairs.

  24. What a great place! We just bought a house too and I am exactly like you… I have no idea what to do or where to start. I love people who have the knack for putting it all together. I just look at it all and get overwhelmed. I wish I could help… I do know one thing your place is great and it will be a wonderful home once you get it all set up. Congratulations!

  25. I think that your idea of using grey undertones on the walls is excellent (sorry that I don’t have any wallpaper take down tips!!). Furniture in black and white would really pop and also would go well with the floors. It might need a facelift, but it’s going to feel more YOURS after you’ve finished (and not as though you’re taking an extended vacation in someone else’s house). Good luck!! Definitely looking forward to watching it progress through the transformation stages! :)

  26. Love your hardwood floors! To take off the wallpaper, you’ll want to score the paper before you spray your solution on it. There are specific “Wallpaper Remover” solutions out there, but I’ve used a solution of just hot water and fabric softener. (I’ve also heard hot water and vinegar). Spray a small section till really wet and then you can grab an edge of paper and pull it off. That should work! I found pulling the paper off sort of cathartic. ;) ha!

  27. I don’t have an ounce of decorating ability in me. Sorry. But I did call upon the help of my friends and famil, like you’re doing, and it all worked out! How much fun though!!! The place looks great, and no matter what, when the house becomes a home, that’s what matters most and will make it the most enjoyable! ;)

  28. LOVE the hardwood floor! I’m liking all of the things you have picked out so far! For the master, since the wall color and the beds you are looking at are pretty neutral, I would pick something that has color for the bed covers, or put pops of color throughout the room with pillows/accents/etc!

  29. So exciting about the house! I imagine the renovation is rather intimidating but it will all come together I’m sure!!! I wish I had some good remodeling tips but unfortunately I don’t have much experience with house renovation! I do love HGTV though!! Congratulations on the new house! So exciting!

  30. I’m in the same boat! we just moved in and I have NO idea what colors, lights, etc I should pick! This weekend is wallpaper removing for us and next weekend painting. I need to go check out the Valspar site. I’m praying a little decorating fairy comes to help me :)