The One Week Challenge

The last three weeks/weekends have been a whirlwind for us.  First, there was Chicago for a work conference, then there was a weekend in Connecticut/New York for a baptism, and this past weekend we hosted our first overnight guests, in town for the annual family reunion.  I like to think it was successful…maybe…okay…maybe we’re a bit rusty in the overnight guest hosting department but hey…everyone survived.  But there’s nothing better to kick your butt into high put-the-house-together gear than the prospect of hosting guests.  So in the matter of a week, we threw together this room:

First Round Of Guest Bedroom Makeover

Spending less than $50 (not including paint) and working with what we already had.  Is it perfect?  No.  Is it what I dream of when I think of our guest bedroom?  Heck no.  Will it go viral on Pinterest?  Oh no no no no no.  But is it littered with flies, stinks like an old musty farmhouse, and looks like this?

Guest Bedroom Before Mess

Oh hell to the no!  No way was I hosting guests in that toss-random-rugs-and-furniture-in-a-room-and-shut-the-door room.  That’s what the space looked like for the last couple of months.  And it stunk, believe me, it stunk, literally AND figuratively.  We didn’t have a ton of time to put the room together so there were no big plans, no mood boards, and no budget.  It was a let’s-just-see-what-the-power-of-paint-can-do kind of makeover.  We did take off the old crown in the room, which in reality is basecap tacked up as crown.  We saved it to later repurpose as basecap.

Removing Guest Bedroom Crown

Here’s why the crown went away.  Oh so gross!

Disgusting Mess Behind The Guest Room Crown

When we moved into our old farmhouse, it had been vacant for at least three years.  Plenty of time for the cluster flies to move in and make their home in the guest room (under the crown) and then die.  I spent the first day of new home ownership vacuuming flies out of this room.  Ewwww!

After a good cleaning, we prepped the room for paint.  I went with Pebble Beach for the walls and White (yes, the name is just “White”) for the trim, both Benjamin Moore.  The colors were a total snap decision.  Colby drove me to the paint store just before closing time and in the five-minute drive there I picked out the colors.

Painting Trim First Before Painting The Walls

I’m not gonna lie.  It wasn’t the best paint-picking process.  But we had a week to make a room livable and painting was the number one priority to cover the stained, creamy walls and trim and make the space smell fresher.  Ah that fresh paint smell.  Besides, at the time I had no clue what I wanted to do with this room.  Of course, now I have a clear vision of the room thanks to a sweet $30 spindle bed score from a flea market (see it on Instagram here), and of course, said design plan involves a different paint color here.  But alas, the room and trim and doors and windows got painted.

Painted Guest Room Walls Trim Windows And Doors

It took about a week’s worth of painting post-work to finish it up.  And then about four hours on a Friday evening to throw up some art, make a bed, and set up some nightstands.  The poor bed here didn’t have real bedding or pillows at the time of the photo.  Let’s just say…a last minute Target run before our guests showed up.

Guest Bedroom With Wall Hanging And Gallery Wall

There are so many things I would change about the room in the above photo (don’t like the nightstands or the mismatched lamp shades, the gallery wall is a bit of a cluster and is hiding a big ol’ hole in the wall, the rug is suffering from rug-too-small syndrome, and no bed skirt), but you know what I love?  The wall hanging.

Wall Hanging In A Guest Bedroom

It’s not really my style and I would never pick it out on my own, but it tells a story and that’s what makes it beautiful to us.  It came from Colby’s Grandpa Bun’s brother, who brought it back from a trip overseas during World War II.  In our last house, we didn’t have a single wall big enough to hang it so it lived in a box for five years.  Now it’s gloriously displayed.

The room also displays one of our favorite DIY art pieces, a framed nautical map of Pushaw Lake in Maine.

Gallery Wall In A Guest Bedroom

Pushaw Lake was OUR lake.  We’ve logged many hours there fishing while we lived in Maine and we dearly miss the lake.

Can we take a minute and talk about the lamps and the thriftiness of this room?  I scored the pair of lamps at a local thrift store.  Just $3.00 for the pair.

Stacked Wood Crates For Nightstands

In total, we spent $142 on this room.  About $100 in paint, $3.00 for the lamps, $15.00 for curtain rods, and $24 for the curtains.  Even then, I bought a gallon of trim paint and could have gotten away with a quart, but I knew I would be using the white paint for the rest of the trim in the house.  Everything else in this room we already had or were given.

Craigslist Armoire Score

We were so grateful that when we moved into our new home, one of Colby’s grandmothers was moving into a small apartment.  We scored a few major furniture pieces including the bed, headboard, dressers, and more.

The blue wardrobe was a $40 Craigslist find I bought for our formal, front entry.  It was pretty there but not functional.  It stored nothing for two months.  Up in the guest bedroom, it plays the role of linen storage with some serious room to grow.

Blue Armoire For Linen Storage In A Guest Room

Topped with a vintage flea market find planter and house plant, my favorite accessory these days.

Plants In Vintage Pots Make A Room

So that’s our little makeover/guest room tour/spiel for working with what you have.  It may not be Pinterest-worthy, but it’s still beautiful to us and a great big step in the right direction for the room.  I love giving a room a first pass working with what we already have, noodling around a little bit, refining and tweaking, until it’s a space we LOVE.

Pssst…how was your weekend?  Is anyone else hosting family?  Or are any other family reunions going on out there?  It was glorious for us to only live 20 minutes away from the family reunion this year instead of 7 hours!  GLORIOUS!!!


    1. Awww…thank you so much! I don’t know why I’m not liking this room (maybe from seeing too many perfectly coiffed Pinterest rooms?!?!) but you’re right, it’s definitely pretty. Thanks!!

      1. Maybe the one-week challenge didn’t give you enough time to fully enjoy the process and end result…
        Anyway, I may be biased because of your floor, whatever you do on that glorious wood floor can only be amazing 😀

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