Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Designing on a Budget: The Library under $100

Hey everyone! I am so excited to start blogging about our new home and the changes Lucas and I are making together! This is the first place that I will live in that will exceed a two year mark. Yep, that is right, I have never lived in one home for longer than two years. We laugh about it together because while I am so excited to be in a 'permanent' home, we wonder if I will get the itch to move in about a year and half. For now, I am very excited to be in a home that we sort of own. Lucas' family owns the property, but we have the free will to create and design around our style. With that being said, let's get to the first room we did!

As always, it is not fully complete as there is constant change in our household and there are a few things we still want to do, but for now, our library is as comfortable as we want it!

I have no idea why I am so bad at before pictures. When I go back to my photos there is ever only one useable photo of before. I apologize for the lack of before pictures, but I will try to be as descriptive as possible to complete a good image for you.

The picture above is only one corner. This room is a 'separator' room that is not very large. It is between the kitchen and our room and is met with three separate entry ways. Confusing, right? You can get to it from the garage, from the kitchen or from the hallway. The French doors shown lead to our bedroom. Either way, the important thing in my opinion is the paint chosen for the room. The top is a deep olive green and the bottom is a deep burgundy. While we do not dislike the colors (in fact, for certain purposes, these colors compliment themselves quite nicely) it does not go with our overall look and design. We wanted this room to be a 'rich' and 'warm' library that we could sit in, relax and read. Reading is one of our favorite pastimes and we house a TON of books. We were debating between two very different colors, green and red. I knew that these two colors, when done right, could lead to a very warm and cozy room, but could also be too overwhelming for a small room. 

Priming the walls!

Priming is a very important step when painting anything. Not only does it save you money on the paint you buy, it also allows for the 'actual' color you choose to really stand out. I have made the mistake before of painting a yellow room with a darker color, thinking that I did not have to prime and what a mistake that was! My color did not come out anything like I wanted it to. It was a disaster and I ended up spending more time and money attempting to make the room the color I had originally wanted. Had I primed, none of that would have happened. The primer I used was Royal Tintable Deep Color Primer. I absolutely love Royal and love their quality. I only needed a gallon which cost $22.00.
Now for the fun part, painting! I wanted to separate the room like it was before, but instead of dark on bottom, I wanted to open the space by using a clean white under the railing. I chose the color Cotton Balls by Benjamin Moore. But I cheat and use the Royal Paint because I love it.  Meaning, instead of getting the Benjamin Moore paint, like you are supposed to when they make the color, I choose Royal Paint as my base. I do it all the time, but I always get a little attitude when ordering that way. But I don't care. Give me the color in the brand I want! I digress. On the top, we chose a deep green. The color is Tarrytown Green by Benjamin Moore. Again, I got the Royal paint. Lucky for me, they were having a sale, so for the two gallons (one of each color) we spent $48.00

These are the colors!

It took all of two days to complete the priming and painting. I think the hardest part of painting a room is taping it. I HATE taping rooms or furniture or anything for that matter, But, I do it, because I will tell you, it creates the best lines for the job. While it may be time consuming, tape, tape, and tape away. It saves you time in the end.

Now, what will we do about bookshelves? We knew that we didn't want store bought shelves; we also knew, there wasn't room for anything more than the bare minimum (i.e. bookshelves would be too bulky). So... we created our own. We have this awesome redwood at the ranch. If you are not familiar, check out our family's winery, Dubost Winery.  Anyway, Lucas cut the redwood to the size we wanted and we attached them to the walls using brackets.

Hooray for bookshelves!

The brackets were white, but never fear, I just painted them the same color as the wall. It hides them quite nicely. The redwood was free and the brackets for all the shelves cost $25.00.

The next issue to tackle, was book ends. Again, we didn't want to buy anything for book ends, so we went back to the ranch to do some digging. What we ended up using were telephone insulators. If you are not familiar with the item, they are old glass insulators that were used in the early 1900s for telephone systems. Insulators are not rare and can be found anywhere online or in antique shops. OR you can always buy them off of me!

Drill, baby, drill.

Book Ends!

After that was done, we just needed to decorate the room!






Every item in the room we already had! The total cost of the room came to: $95.00. We are so in love with this room. We need to add some more shelving. We still have boxes of books, but for now, we are thrilled with it! Hope you like it as well!

Squeeze- Liz


  1. I LOVE taping!!!! It's my favorite thing. And I hate painting unless it is the first roll. After that I am done.