Sunday, January 03, 2010


Tonight I'm sharing a project that I did just about eight years ago.  At that time, we did not live in an expansive fixer-upper like we do now.  Five of us lived in a tiny, 1000 sq. ft. fixer-upper shack--which I'd love to be able to call a cottage or cabin or cute little house--but I can't.  It was a shack.  And one of these days I will post photos so you will know for sure and for certain that I do not lie.  Yes, I had it looking as darling as a shack could look, but nonetheless--it was what it was. 
We I called it the house that Jack built because it was thrown together with some pretty odd things.   If you've ever been to East Tennessee, you will have some idea of what I describe.  But I digress. Oh, and one more thing as long as I'm already digressing.  Before wall words were popular or even available for purchase, I had stenciled--with stencils I hand cut--across the wall in the living room the following: 

And they all lived together in a little crooked house.
It said it all.  It was the first thing folks saw when they came in.  I wanted them to know right off the bat that I was well aware of what I was living in.  At the time, I struggled a bit with my circumstances or more specifically, my home, but in looking back at the photos, I now realize that some of my fondest memories are of the time we spent in that shack home.  I learned a lot there.  I planted my first garden there.  I canned my first vegetables there.  I owned my first chickens and goats and rabbits there.  I had my first love affair--with a horse--there.
And now that I wrote all those fond memories, I kind of feel compelled to write more.  I may make it a weekly feature.
On to the post so that I can make the deadline for Funky Junk's SNS.

Because the shack had only two bedrooms when we first moved there, my two sons, 18 and 10, and  my two-year-old daughter had to share.  It was cozy.  Then the oldest joined the Air Force.  I wonder why.  And then there were only two in the room.  Still cozy and the boy and girl thing.  So one day, after about two years of living like this,  I had this brainy idea that we could easily enclose part of the porch for my then four-year-old daughter, Tessa.  The room could only be 7 x 8 feet or so, but I had a plan.  I always do.

This was before digital--you know in the olden days when you had to wait to see your photos--so bear with the some of the scanned images!

Now what is impressive about this remodel is how it all came together.  The headboard was made out of cabinet doors that I snatched from my mother's old house in Ohio when she got *new* cabinets.  I know, horrors!   The lights were snatched from a remodeling job my husband had done.  They are outdoor fixtures painted white.
I took--for me at the time--a huge chance by painting the ceiling pink and the walls green, but I loved it.  I still love it.  I wish I could have taken that room with  me. The vanity was given to my husband.  I just painted it and sewed a skirt for it.
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The window, which we made into a cabinet was picked up off the side of the road or something. The gingham checked fabric for the curtains was given to me many years before. The little white ruffle was made from an old bedskirt. The pink curtain rod was a find at Big Lots for a couple of dollars. The art work was done by my daughter.  Still love it and display it.
And again, more cabinet doors were used to make the book shelf.
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She had a perfect view my son's club house on the side of the mountain and of the chicken coop.  How lucky was that? And while the rest of the house had painted OSB floors, she got hardwood! 
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And the little horse-loving girl who lived in this room remains a favorite of mine as well.
five-year-old Tessa
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Emily Lawrence Bray said...

This is by far my favorite post. I love that you "boomed where you were planted", and made the best of what you had. I know you, so I am certain it was lovely!

Mimi said...

I always love reading your blog and the perspective you put into everything!!!! I love your honesty!!!! it makes me laugh!!!!
We all learn to love what we are given as we should!!!!As the old saying goes, Home is where the family is!!!! Not the walls!!!!

Funky Junk Interiors said...

Oh my gosh... I'm totally melting at your daughter!! Aside from wanting to keep her all for myself, her room is seriously fabulous. You sure have some ultra creative genes running through you. Those lights are to die for.

Thanks for linking up to SNS, girlfriend!

FJ Donna

Ali said...

Please post more like this! We are in 1600sq ft of condo space, but only 2 bedrooms. I don't have a clue "where" to put my daughter (who is only 5months). Right now my son has the second bedroom and my daughter is in our bedroom. But I'd love for her to have her own space. I just can't figure out where!

Tessa/Lorenias said...

Yes that was an awesome room Mom.

Dianna said...

Old doors, windows, screens and shutters make great art pieces. I love the headboards.

Danielle @ Transforming Home said...

Such wonderful creativity and a beautiful room! I love spaces like these because you can tell a lot of love and personality went into it. Great work.


PlantSomeRoots@Lakewood said...

I truly believe our creativity grows when we are forced to make do. We rise above what we are handed and can make something out of nothing. That room is adorable!
Living it up at Lakewood,

edie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
edie said...

My favorite part: Tessa's comment. That says it all. I love all the repurposed cabinet doors----the creativity is EVERYWHERE. And loving your new side bar additions.

lots of love,

Kelly said...

It was a darling room. You need to feature the other bedroom in that house that we painstakingly painted.