Friday, December 30, 2011

We installed carpet.

We've been busy. I don't know if the Internet can handle this much excitement. Are you ready? We installed carpet in the dining room!

I know, I know. Everyone likes to chew us out for covering our hardwood floors. But hear me out. The original floors were very damaged and unfinished.

Warning: This post contains mostly pics taken with my iPhone. (That is a disclaimer meaning they aren't the highest quality. It's ok. Remember, the best camera is the one that's with you.)

You may recall that we can previously toyed with the idea of refinishing the floors in this room. You also might remember that when we bought the house, this room had old, stained white carpet covering the floors. We pulled up the gross carpet to find the original hardwood floors, but they were definitely showing their wear (see above).

We intended to start from scratch with the whole refinishing process, but we just didn't have the time nor resources to tackle this project. Refinishing is expensive (we would need to rent the sander and buy lots of sand paper to finish this job), messy, and time consuming. As I mentioned in a previous post, I was also nervous that refinishing the floors might be wasted time, money, and effort since our 120 pound dog Murphy is pretty hard on wooden floors. Who's to say the floors wouldn't need work in just a few years of Murphy's destruction?

Also it should be noted that we have wood floors (both hardwood and laminate) throughout most of the main level of our house and the basement). So I honestly don't miss one more room of wood and can appreciate a different material.

Back to the project at hand. Right around Thanksgiving time, we decided to take a look at inexpensive carpet options for our dining room. I knew I wanted a material that was a bit more durable and hard-wearing, definitely not anything shaggy or fluffy. I also love textures (we have quite a new jute rugs scattered throughout the rug). We found some promising options at Menards, and I was pleasantly surprised to learn that the type of carpet I was seeking was actually very affordable. We strongly considered this one for $1.19 a square foot.

I liked the woven texture and bold jewel-toned colors. But we try not to make impulsive decisions, so we opted to check out Home Depot's selection as well.Home Depot has LOTS of carpet choices that fit our requirements. And they offer small samples that you can take home.

We grabbed several small samples to take home and try. Note: The lighting in those giant warehouse stores can be really misleading. Whenever you are picking out any home materials, whether paint or tile or carpet, I highly recommend you bring home a sample to see how you like it with your own home's lighting.

We both agreed on a clear favorite - one that Rob had picked out. It is called "Progressive Natural." It's not a fluffy carpet material, but it's actually pretty soft to the touch. It seems well made and has a loop pattern. It really reminds me of a natural-textured rug.

In fact, I immediately had to show Rob another blog article I saw a while back in which this pro interior decorator installed sea-grass carpet in her home (click here to read that article at Pure Style Home). I love how natural and earthy it looks:

Photo from Pure Style Home

Now here's the best part. The carpet that we both liked was only 58 cents a square foot. Can you believe that? We were able to buy a piece for our large 19x12 foot dining room for $132. That's much cheaper than a large area rug, and it's also much cheaper than refinishing the wood floors. Since this room had carpet previously, we hoped it would be fairly easy to install since the current trim had a gap which we could slide the new carpet into. Note that we also bought a $67 carpet pad to make it even softer on our feet. And then we picked up some staples for our existing staple gun, a $15 boot kicker, and $12 for tack strips. Total money spent = $226.

Here's the room all emptied out:

And here it is with new carpet!

Closer shots to show the texture:

I love it. We hardly ever used our dining room before, but maybe we will now that it's so comfy on our bare feet.

What's next for this room?

  • New paint color. We're thinking a light warm gray to brighten things up but still maintain the neutral feel in the room.
  • Finish the photo wall we talked about here.
  • Install lighting fixture over the table. Perhaps a rugged looking chandelier?
A room is never really done, is it? Ah well. With the new carpet, this room feels so much more cozy and inviting now.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Dear Ann

Dear Ann,

Since you've been gone, I've worked hard to continue your mission of adding some color to my (mostly black and gray) wardrobe.

Look here - there's some blues and greens. Purple and coral. There's even some orange in there!

I hope this photo will make your day. :)

someone else's words

"Happiness comes when your work and words are of benefit to yourself and others." - Buddha

  © Thanks to for providing a great Blogger framework to remix. Hope you don't mind the changes I made.

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