Our first major (and I mean MAJOR) project:

So, enough practicing on our guinea pig room…its time to get to the “real” stuff! Pretty much everything we practiced in the laundry room was gearing up for our lovely breakfast nook:

It probably has to do with the fact that I grew up in an old house from the 1940s, but one thing I detest are trim-less windows. And guess what, every single one of our windows in this house is trimless!
So following my “do it in the order of what bugs you the most” mentality, our first MAJOR project was the breakfast nook. I just felt like this area looked extremely unfinished, with those three, sad trimless windows! And nooks have so much potential. They are such cozy little spots. I was dreaming of something like this:
Aka: tons of woodwork. The more crisp white woodwork, the better šŸ™‚
So our plan was to frame out the windows as one (meaning, put wood in the gaps between windows, rather than framing each window separately). We also added the same board and batten technique to the empty walls of this nook area, to help define the space.
We took some lessons from our first wainscoting project and decided to remove the baseboards this time. In the laundry room, we kept the baseboards on and just started the board and batten above it. We also used chair rail moulding at the top, but this time I decided to make a short ledge to fit better with the casual board-and-batten feel.

This was not the best project to do when framing windows for the first time, since the shape of the nook meant extra work getting all the angles right. There was much, much frustration on Nick’s part. Through this experience, he also realized that for future projects like this, we need to get a table saw. He has a miter saw right now, and it was very difficult to cut straight lines.
The biggest lesson we both learned during this was that almost anything can be fixed (or “fudged”) with wood putty and caulk. That became my job, and let me tell you, I spent nearly the same amount of time applying the putty and sanding as Nick did building. I am wood putty’s biggest fan now!

Once it was finally done (it took about 3 days of working every free moment we had), then my job really started and I began painting. This was the first time I decided to use primer. Newsflash: that stuff really does work! In the laundry room (where I didn’t prime) it took at least four/five coats. Using the primer, I only had to use one coat of paint afterwards.

So here are the final results. And by final, I guess I really mean window-treatmentless, wall-artless, and new-light-fixtureless. But those things will come šŸ™‚

So what do you think? I’m pretty proud of Nick for his perseverance through the frustration. I am super-impressed by his skills, especially since this was his first time framing a window. And I think the space will all really come together once I get some window treatments up…which by the way, I am in the process of DIYing (of course) right now.

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