Category Archives: Dining Room

New addition to the dining room–Tea/coffee bar

Several weeks ago we got an idea from Pinterest to have a coffee/tea bar in our dining room. It seemed like a great idea to solve a couple problems in our kitchen and dining room: the large blank white wall and limited storage and counter space in the kitchen. Since we have quite a bit of tea and coffee related items, this would actually free up a significant amount of space.

Inspiration from Pinterest:

We looked for tables/sideboards/buffets at a couple local antique stores but didn’t really find anything we liked in the price range we wanted. We considered purchasing the shelf/drawers/hooks in the original picture from Pinterest (it can be found at Hobby Lobby.), but wanted to look around first to see if we could find any other options that may work just as well for what we wanted and be less expensive. (If anyone is interested in the one at Hobby Lobby, just wait long enough and it will probably eventually go on sale for 40-50% off.)

A couple weekends ago we went to Ikea with just a couple specific things to purchase, but of course we were still going to look around for anything else that might go well in the house. We happened to come across a sideboard (made of solid wood) near the kitchen tables. It looked like a great piece of furniture to use for the coffee/tea bar. We still needed something to hang mugs on the wall, though. On our last trip to Ikea, we purchased a metal bar and intended to use it to hang up kitchen gadgets, but there isn’t really anywhere to put it in the kitchen where it wouldn’t be in the way and still be easy to get to. At first, we thought we’d just use it and buy some hooks to hang some mugs from, but then we saw the little baskets and those only fit on the narrower bar. This turned out just fine, though, since it was less expensive to purchase the bar, hooks, shelf/basket, and ceramic pot-type thing (a total of about $10) for the narrower bar than to purchase hooks and baskets to fit on the larger bar.
With the way this is currently set up, we can keep 8 mugs there–4 hanging and 4 on the wooden stand (hiding behind the sugar in these pictures–only 2 of the 4 are on the stand here). At some point, we may add another bar above that one to hold more mugs and tea. We will also be able to keep spoons available near everything in that ceramic container next to the basket. Somehow we left Ikea without thinking to go by the utensils to get some spoons just to leave with the tea and coffee. (Here’s a link to this project posted on Pinterest.)

updated coffee/tea bar

We now have space to store several mugs, all the tea and coffee, and anything used to make tea and coffee, as well as finally having something on the big blank wall.
(Also, on the far right side of the table there is a bonus project from Pinterest–homemade ginger ale. )
coffee/tea bar rack
coffee/tea bar drawer

We added a few cookbooks to the shelves as decoration (and again, as a better place to store them)–two that we already had and one that we purchased at TJMaxx with a gift card we received at a wedding shower.


Homemade ginger ale:
ginger ale

Sideboard: Ikea
Metal bar, hooks, baskets: Ikea
Baskets: World Market
Tea canisters: World Market
Looseleaf Tea: Dekalb Farmers Market

We added this project to The Pinterest Challenge being hosted by Sherry of Young House Love, Katie of Bower Power, Erin of House of Earnest, and Ana of  (other links will be added as they are posted). Go visit their blogs to see their projects as well as all the other Pinterest inspired projects being submitted.


Lots of progress in the kitchen/dining room

Big news of the weekend: After spending all afternoon working on this, the new refrigerator is finally in the kitchen! It was quite a complicated process to make this happen. The doorway from the living room to the kitchen is 30 inches wide. The depth of the refrigerator without doors or anything else sticking out is 29 inches. We had to remove the refrigerator doors and remove part of what the freezer door is anchored to on the bottom. As if disassembling the fridge and getting it into the kitchen wasn’t enough, we then had to piece it all back together.

Two other things finished this weekend as well–the red dining room chairs and moving the butcher block upstairs!

The butcher block weighs at least 200 pounds, so it wasn’t something that one person could move up the stairs alone (or the boy + girl could do–the girl doesn’t have enough muscles for this). A friend came over to help move it up the stairs, prepare the counter base to have the butcher block screwed in, and put the butcher block on top of the base (with screws holding it in place).

The red paint on the chairs was finished a few days ago and just needed a clear coat. We tried putting a clear coat on it a few days ago, but it just brushed off like dust when it dried–it didn’t seem to stick to the red paint at all. So, we went to buy some more clear gloss paint (same brand) to try and it worked this time!


The list of things to finish in the kitchen and dining room is getting smaller and it is actually starting to look more like a usable room.

Tile floor = finished!

This weekend, the remainder of the tile was cut and laid and grout was put in. Now that the kitchen/dining room floor is finished, we can now start the process of making it look a little more like a room instead of a storage/work space. We also found a glass table on craigslist and went to look at it today–should be able to pick it up and move it over here in a couple days. We didn’t have to go far to get it either–just .8 miles away in Crestwood North. The dining room chairs are closer to being ready, so maybe in the next few days the dining room will be ready to have pictures posted.

Paint progress–All doors and trim in the hallway and hall bathroom have been painted white. The only thing left to paint is the door in the dining room and touch ups of gray in the hallway. There are a couple other painting projects that need to be done at some point, but those will wait a little while longer.

We’ve briefly mentioned the Gunlocke chairs in the living room before, and we thought it was about time to actually show them to you. These were the chairs where we bought one (the brown one) from a local modern furniture seller then, a couple weeks later, happened to find one just like it (though green) at What’s on 2nd?


If you would like to help out the Crestwood community, please consider donating to my friend’s kickstarter program to provide a bi-monthly newsletter to the crestwood area.  She is the founder of the35212 and has been a very strong supporter of our community and its residents.

Largest project to date

The tile is down and ready to be grouted. Dog is excited to have tile floors to help him stay cool. He also enjoys trying to eat spacers, which has been a minor inconvenience.

Tile floor (and dog)

The original linen wallpaper has also been removed from the master bathroom. After hearing horror stories about removing wallpaper, we were a little worried about how difficult it might be to get it off and had been discussing the possibility of  painting on top of it. Just out of curiosity, we decided to try to peel a little piece of it off from around the window. To our surprise, it came off pretty easily. 10 minutes later, we had all the wallpaper down! Now we just have to get the 50 year old glue removed from the walls and prep for paint. After removing the wallpaper, moving the bathroom mats out of the way, and pushing the curtain out of the way, we also realized that the bathroom tile wasn’t nearly as pink as we originally thought.

Not quite as exciting, the white paint has been finished on the doors and trim in the hallway and primer has been put on the door and trim on the inside of the hall bathroom. The hall bathroom shows the biggest improvement from this–it used to be yellow.

Next on the agenda–subway tile backsplash


About a week ago the kitchen looked like this:

As of Saturday, 225 square feet of backerboard is finished and ready for the tile to be put down. The humans are happy to be finished with this. The dog is happy too, since we are one step closer to him being able to roam the house while he’s at home alone. He’s also looking forward to more surface to slide around on.

Also…notice the white cabinets. Two layers of primer + two layers of Behr Premium Plus Ultra (Ultra Pure White) + some touch ups = they actually look white now!