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Ten Cottage Style Renovation Project Ideas

December 30, 2022

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The end of the year is traditionally a time of reflection.

It's a great opportunity to look back and take stock. To check in to see how the plans made in January turned out.

And what popped up that hadn't been planned at all.

Choosing  A Green Paint Color to make fabric and wallpaper

The amount of renovations we accomplished during the last twelve months certainly fell into the latter category.

At the start of the year, I was sure that I would finally, finally find a new sofa to replace my beloved, but well worn, floral couch.

And I did.

However, the amount of renovations that one, supposedly simple, swap triggered was insane.

As December fades into the horizon, our home has been almost completely madeover.

Inside and out.

Did you catch them all?

Well, in case you missed them, I thought this would be a fun time to revisit all those before and afters and count down the ways my tiny has changed in order of popularity.

According to you.

Let's take a peek, shall we?

Number 10

Let's start out with my unexpected basement makeover

Family Room Makeover Before and After ceramic pumpkin, crochets coasters, pillow

This one was not on the list, but after everything else was looking fresh and new, we figured why not.

We really didn't replace more than the sofa and a few accessories, but what a difference it made.

Number 9

Wallpaper is all the rage now and I hopped on the bandwagon this fall.

Smoothing Wallpaper Seams

We added it to our family room to level up our cottage style decor. It looks absolutely fabulous, if I do say so myself. 

And it wasn't that difficult to do.

Here's exactly how to hang floral wallpaper to perfectly match up all those dainty petals.

Number 8

Those flowers were only part of a very dramatic family room makeover

Cottage Style Checked Sofa and Floral Wallpaper

It's the one room we truly planned on renovating. Well, we really just planned on replacing the sofa with a checked version.

But when the dust finally settled, and there was a lot of dust, we'd repainted, ripped up the carpet and put down a new floor, added fresh moulding, a new window seat, curtains, a custom bay window rod.

The aforementioned wallpaper...and a new ottoman, which Santa delivered himself just days before Christmas.

Ho Ho Ho.

Number 7

When we ripped up that carpet in the family room, we had to remove it from the stairs that led to the basement, too.

Cutting Stair Runner Rugs

The rooms are attached and it would've looked silly to leave it there.

Besides, the carpet was 20 years old and ready for a replacement.

I wanted to leave the stairs, uncarpeted, but after a tiny tumble, we decided that installing a runner rug on those old, uneven steps was the safer option.

It also turned out to be the more attractive one.

Number 6

The next two renovations were actually tied in our countdown.

I guess once our full hallway makeover was revealed, everyone wanted to know exactly how we did it.

Red Roses On A Table In The Hallway

I'll be honest, this room was probably the most work, even though it was the tiniest space to get an overhaul.

However, it's so light and bright now, and feels like we have a new room in the house, not just a passthrough, I hardly remember all the construction.  


Maybe I remember a little. 

Number 5

Clearly, the most dramatic part of that new space was the painted floor.

It was such a huge change from the dark, wall to wall patterned carpet.

Using A Roller To Paint A Wood Floor

But there were a lot of questions about it and in how to paint an old wood floor, we answered them all.

As for a follow up, I'll check in this summer, but right now, it still looks as good as new.

Number 4

While it would be overwhelming enough to renovate so many room inside, you might remember that we also did a lot of updating outside.

Everything from the roof, the pool liner, the fence and driveway were replaced. A busy year indeed.

However the spot that really grabbed your attention, was the patio.

Cambridge Patio Pavers in Sand in backyard with wooden deck

We tore up the old concrete slab and put down gorgeous, sand colored pavers in its place.

While that wasn't a DIY job, the new wooden deck my husband built absolutely was...and it became my favorite evening perch to oversee my lovely {much improved} exterior view.

Number 3

Number three bridges the gap between indoors and out. It's my very sweet, lightly madeover covered porch.

Outdoor Covered Porch Decor With Candles

Like the basement, this room just needed a tiny kiss of upgrading.

Fresh cushions, a few thrift store accessories, flowers and candlelight, turned my dated screened in room into a cottage style beach retreat.

It wasn't on the list at the beginning of the year, but I'm so happy we decided to tackle it.

Is it summer yet?

Number 2

I have to say, you guys love flooring.

No joke, in addition to our painted floor and our stair remodel, you visited how to install laminate vinyl flooring more than almost any other DIY.

How To Install Floating Vinyl Flooring

I was a little nervous about his one, I loved the carpeting in that room. It was warm and soft and made the room look so cozy.

Of course, now I can't imagine it any other way.

It's even more snuggly than it was before, if possible, but at the same time that new floor makes the room feel fresh and modern.

Clearly, you all have very good taste.

Ok so now we're ready to reveal the most visited, most shared, most popular renovation project of the year.

As shocked as I was with what ranked number one out of all the year's crafty projects, I'm equally as shocked here.

Once again, a solution outranked a before and after reveal.

What is this helpful hint, you ask?

Number 1

Coming in at number one is what to do when you pick the wrong color paint.

Ok, so truly, not that shocking.

It's a very common occurrence. I mean let's face it, choosing a paint is hard.

Benjamin Moore Paint Swatches

The swatches never look the same on the wall.

Lighting and wall texture can cause large variations in tone and sometimes what you thought you wanted, just doesn't work in real life.

Fear not, you're not alone, there's always an out and we listed several to help you find the way.

Whoa - that was a whole lot of DIY for one year.

And while that list was quite exhaustive and covered much of this tiny house, believe it or not, we're not done yet.

The kitchen is more than twenty years old and needs to be painted.

The bathroom vanities each have their own little issues.

And one of these days, I really would like to have an actual apron front farmhouse sink.

So keep your eyes peeled for those upcoming DIYs.

In the meantime, I hope you have a wonderful New Year's celebration, whether you're partying with friends or cuddling up at home. 

I'd also like to take this opportunity thank you for spending another creative year with me. I truly appreciate each visit, comment and email. Nothing thrills me more when you fill up the comment section with your own stories and tales of DIY.

After all, it's no fun talking to yourself.

I look forward to many more creative pursuits in 2023 and hope you'll be there to join me as we craft our way through it! 🥂


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  1. Kim, y'all have been BUSY! I love the wallpaper and it's perfect with your new sofa! How wonderful to usher in the new year with so many home improvements completed. Happy New Year!

    1. Happy New Year!! Thank you so much, yes, very busy, but hoping to take a renovation break soon...very soon!!

  2. You and your hubby definitely put in some serious DIY hours in 2022. And the results are spectacular. Your home is so cozy and charming. I love it! Happy New Year to both of you! Hugs.

    1. Thank you so much, Nancy! It was a lot of work, but a true labor of love. I know you understand. I hope you have a wonderful 2023, my friend, sending big hugs back to you!!

  3. What a great list of accomplishments for 2022! I have fixing the paint color that I don't really like on my bucket list for 2023.

    1. Thanks Janet!! Happy New Year...and good luck with that paint. It's tricky business for sure!

  4. Hello sweet friend. You did a lot of beautiful things in your pretty cottage. I love the new sofa and the wallpaper and paint color are all so pretty. I cannot wait to see what happens for you in the new year. Happy New Year. xoxo Kris

    1. Hello Kris...and Happy, Happy New Year!! Thanks for the sweet words, as always, my friend. I was really hoping for a respite, but the Mr is already asking me where the tarps are so he can repaint the kitchen. Oh boy!!

  5. You have been very busy this past year Kim! I hope for 2023 you can sit back and enjoy all the fruits of your labor. Have a Happy and Healthy New Year my friend!

    1. Thanks Mary! Sitting sounds like a lovely plan!! Haha!! Happy New Year to you, too!!

  6. Happy New Year to you and yours! I have a list as long as my arm of things I want to do with my house, so I eagerly read up on what YOU do since apparently we both love the same colors and all things cozy and comfy (: My favorite makeover of yours was the basement. Looks so relaxing!

    1. Happy New Year, Gina! I have to say that basement makeover was also my favorite and a surprise, at that. I really thought the family room would be my big makeover crush, but that basement sectional is narcotic!! Haha

  7. You have accomplished so much in twelve months! Your cottage is so cute, and I enjoy reading about ALL of your projects, large and small. Happy New Year!

    1. Thanks so much, Ricki! It's always fun to share, I'm so glad you enjoy reading about our crazy DIYs!! Happy New Year!

  8. You were certainly busy last year!
    Wishing you a Happy 2023.

    All the best Jan

  9. I'm happy to say that I remember each and every one of your projects this year! When you put them all in one place - wow! You did so much! Looking forward to your before and afters in 2023. Wishing you all the best in 2023, Kim!

    1. Happy New Year, Amy! Thanks so much, it was a lot all at once, but I'm glad we got it all completed before the holidays!

  10. Hello,
    I am trying to get Jeremy on the wallpaper bandwagon, hee hee, I am thinking of wallpaper in our dining room.
    Thank you for sharing your projects with us, I always learn something from you.
    xx oo

    1. It’s addictive, Carla! Now I want to wallpaper the basement wall and the bathroom. Maybe in the new year I can talk my own DIY guy into more. And thank you for the lovely words! xo

  11. Your renovations have been nothing short of astounding! Everything is so beautiful, even more so than previously! You and your husband are quite a dynamic team! It will be interesting to see what things you decide to tackle in 2023! Happy New Year to you!

    1. Thanks so much, Marilyn! It was a whirlwind kind of DIY year, that’s for sure!! Happy New Year!!

  12. I still remember being so excited when you mentioned on IG that the much talked about sofa had arrived. I couldn't wait to pop over for a visit and it was worth it. Love how you guys tackle projects and give honest feedback. It's so refreshing in a world full of over staged nonsense. Can't wait to follow along on the new projects too. Hope you all have a wonderful 2023 and that all you body parts stay safe and unbroken.

    1. Thanks so much, Michelle...and you and me both!!

  13. Kim,
    OMG!! You have been so busy and everything looks so fantastic!!! You have done such an incredible job of transforming your home this past year...I sure hope that you are patting yourself on the back because you deserve it!!