R&R Fixer Upper: 1 Year Update

Monday, August 24, 2020

I absolutely cannot believe it has been a whole year since we moved into our 'fixer upper'. I also cannot believe it has been almost a year since I have shared anything here on R&R at home. A lot has happened in the past year; getting pregnant with our rainbow baby, a pandemic, quarantine, a new baby... the list goes on. This year's theme has seemed to be all about survival and staying sane which has meant putting R&R on the back burner to take some stress off my plate. 

That doesn't mean we haven't been busy with home projects! Pretty much every every room in our house has been transformed in one way or another. I figured it would be fun to do a look back at all of the before and afters of our house as a way of celebrating ONE year in this house.


This space got a major face lift with some simply changes. The biggest change was obviously with paint. I painted all of the trim and walls (Walls: Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter Lightened 50%, Trim: Benjamin Moore White Dove). Before you are too impressed- let's play a game of iSpy... Can you find the spots I still need to a second coat? Welcome to what we call the 95% club, ha!

In addition to paint we also swapped out the chandelier for something a bit more modern. Y'all know I'm cheap as he** but this was something we did have to hire out for as we didn't' have the tools or equipment needed to change a second story fixture. I really love the simplicity of the new fixture and I love that I was able to find it at the 'open box' price!

Dining Room

This room got a temporary update with some paint and a new light fixture. I say temporary because I have big plans for this space down the road but don't necessarily have the budget for it just yet. 

That being said, a little paint an updated light fixture did wonders for this space. It feels so much lighter and brighter!


This was another room that simply needed some paint to update it (are you sensing a theme here?). I'm not thrilled having our playroom off the entryway as the first room guests see but this season of life calls for this space to be used this way and we're embracing it. I did choose a very neutral color palette for this very reason. 

You can find my full post on how I organized our playroom here

Living Room

This was the first room that I tackled painting trim. I was so beyond nervous to start but once my brush hit the first bit of crown molding all bets were off and I literally had all of the trim in the house painted in about a month (I do plan to do a full post with my process at some point FYI). 

Down the road I would like to update the fireplace with a german smear technique or a mortar wash. I need to paint the fireplace screen and would love to update the mantel as well but much like all the other rooms paint alone gave this space the update it needed.



The kitchen was one of the bigger projects that I tackled upon moving in but once was again transformed by the power of paint. The first thing I did was remove a few upper cabinets that I felt were simply taking up visual space. I replaced the uppers that I removed with some DIY open shelving using some iron shelf brackets and common pine boards. Ready for another round of iSpy?... I still need to stain the shelves next to the refrigerator.

Other than replacing some of the upper cabinets, I painted all of the cabinets white and replaced all of the hardware. Down the road I would like to completely redo the footprint of this space but that is going to be years down the road once we have saved a pretty penny.

Powder Room

This was one of the first rooms I tackled as part of the Sept 2019 $100 Room Challenge (see full details here). For the low low cost of $65 I was able to transform this space. It really is the epitome of night and day in here. It was soooo dark before with the burgundy color. 

Mudroom Hallway

This space was the first project I completed when moving in. This hallways is off of our garage and I learned pretty quickly that we were going to need a more functional space as a 'drop zone' since this is the main way we enter the house on a daily basis. You can see the full details of this makeover here. I did recently add a few more updates by painting the door black and finishing the trim in white.

Laundry Room

This was my most recent project. At 9 months pregnant I was itching for a project so I gathered up all of my old paint and completed this space for ZERO dollars. I painted the cabinets with Fusion Mineral Paint in Little Lamb (leftover from my master bathroom makeover... details on that space later), painted all of the trim white, painted the door black (Color: Sherwin Williams Peppercorn) and created a fun accent wall with a paint brush technique and an old paint sample. 


I will be honest, this room was the lowest on my priority list. It is at the back of the house and was a space we rarely used (and one I hoped to demo into a giant mudroom/laundry room at some point). But when we realized that my husband was going to be working from home for the foreseeable future I decided it was important to give this space a facelift. 

The biggest change was... you guessed it... paint. I started by painting the trim (BM White Dove) and then did the walls (SW On The Rocks). The only other change made to this space was replacing the ceiling fan with something more modern. I scored this fan for around $100 at Lowe's. 

Master Bathroom

One of the biggest renovations we completed this year was in our master bathroom. This room was almost a deal breaker for me when it came to buying this house. I could not believe how absolutely gigantic it was, how awful the layout was (I mean... why a giant bathtub and TINY shower) and it was filled with wall to wall CARPET! I totally thought it would be years before I had the budget to tackle this space.

Then one day at 19 weeks pregnant I decided I had had enough and I ripped out the carpet and gave myself $500 to makeover this room. Yes... $500!! And that budget had to include FLOORING! Spoiler: I was able to do it! I had meant to put a full blog post together for this room alone but life happened and I never got around to it. 

Timing was great for my impulse because about a week after completing this room we went on full lockdown here in Illinois due to the Covid-19 pandemic. 

I'll do a quick rundown of all the changes we made; I installed vinyl plank flooring (all by myself!!), painted the cabinets using Fusion Mineral Paint in Little Lamb, Updated the hardware to match all the gold fixtures (thank goodness gold is coming back!!), painted all of the trim, installed shiplap as a bathtub surround where there was carpet, used peel and stick tiles to cover an old pink flower design on bathtub tile. 

It's time for iSpy again... I still need to finish the bathtub step, install a barn door leading to the shower and install quarter round to all trim (was not able to get final supplies due to lockdown and subsequent quarantine for our family). 


If you follow along with my on Instagram then you may already know about the water fiasco we encountered a month after moving in. If not, let me catch you up to speed; we discovered water was leaking from our roof and into our living room when I noticed it pooling in the ceiling. It took us about 9 months to diagnose and fix the problem (chimney flashing). Then, this room became the nursery for our new baby!

Phew! I truly cannot believe all that I have been able to accomplish in a year. It was a LOT of painting but looking back it was so fun to see all of my hard work transforming this house. No other house we have lived in has felt more like home than this one and I believe it is because of all of the hard work that I've put in. 

I promise not to take as long of a hiatus. Excited to share more progress of our fixer upper soon!

As always, thank you for visiting R&R at home!

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