Monday, October 7, 2013

And We're Back!

Hi! Sorry we had to take a hiatus from blogging for the past couple of months. Things got hectic and I ended up catching pneumonia so I didn't have energy for doing anything for awhile. I slowly recovered and now we are adjusting to our new home...there are still lots of things to do but I thought I would show some of the progress in different parts of the goes!

A lot of my pictures are gone because my old lap top broke down during the hot, hot summer, so I'll just show you what I have. Sorry there are not better "before" pics to compare!

WALLPAPER: so this was pretty much the main project throughout the house because we decided it would be the least expensive but biggest impact. We started out with very dirty, sticky walls that were worn out from 20+ years of use (with heavy smokers and little to no cleaning! eek!). So we stripped almost all the walls and Seisuke replaced the wallpaper himself. He did such a great job and saved us thousands of dollars!

MASTER BEDROOM: I think I posted these pics but just to refresh your memory here are some before and after pics.

Here I am testing out some paint colors with a paint that is made specifically for painting over wallpaper. We used this room to test before stripping the walls. Can you see how dingy the walls were?

We wallpapered the accent wall horizontally to create a wavy look.
The lines aren't even in focus bc they are so thin they really look like they are moving!
Here's a view of the outside and a shot of our nice crisp white walls.
We added these tatami mats and sleep on Japanese futon mattresses.  
Here's how they look folded out.
Our nice velvety curtains.

GUEST BEDROOM 1: We wanted to paint this room mint green, but we noticed that the paint dries a lot lighter than the sample color and we wanted to make sure the color was bold enough to cover over the brownish color the existing wallpaper was, so we picked a darker shade. Turns out it looks more "pistachio" than "mint," I think, so I was a little disappointed but it is a huge improvement from the old walls.

I haven't really mastered how to take pictures of rooms yet....this is tricky to show because it is a narrow room and we put the ends of the beds together to make an L shape. This was the only way they would fit since the other wall has a door and closet. These beds were already in the house and, since they match, we decided to put them in the same room.

GUEST BEDROOM 2: This one has a balcony that connects to the master bedroom. Seisuke had accumulated a lot of things on that balcony and clearing it out was just as big a task as clearing out the room!

You can really see how dirty the wallpaper was!

First I painted the ceiling white a few times...

We still need to get some kind of tile or panels to protect the concrete and someday I'd like to paint a mural on the walls!
Here's all the stuff that was on that balcony that has to find a new home!

Baby blue

UPSTAIRS HALLWAY: The hardest part was definitely rewallpapering the walls around the stairs. We decided to leave the ceiling wallpaper because I didn't want to risk Seisuke getting hurt--especially before our wedding! So I repainted it white. 

For every room Seisuke measured out how many meters of wallpaper we would need--while also considering that for patterns to match up we would need some extra. It was really impressive how good his math skills are!!!

You can see the ORIGINAL wallpaper color once we removed the lighting!

Here are the stripped walls

Just getting everything stripped was a big relief and, at the time, a huge accomplishment.

This really made me nervous seeing how he had to climb up to wallpaper the staircase.

Getting brighter in here....

Painted ceiling

And then we turned it into a little office nook! The iMac was a get well gift from Seisuke, the desk and Eames chair was from Rakuten, the print we got in NY and had framed here in Japan, and the rug is from Target!

TOILET: So, believe it or not, Seisuke replaced the toilet himself. He also re-did the flooring, fan, lighting, and wallpaper! We often get the most compliments on this room and, as funny as it sounds, we are very proud of it!

Self is from Ikea. Chandelier is from a cute interior store in Osaka.

The towel and toilet paper holders are from Rakuten (different vendors but they totally match!). The mat is from a department store in Osaka and the towel is from Home Goods. I also put a small Yankee candle on the window sill and it smells amazing! It makes such a difference and I haven't even lit the candle! I would love to get more Yankee candles for other rooms in the house!
LAUNDRY ROOM: We inherited the family washer/dryer and I gave my old (smaller but newer) washing machine to Seisuke's parents. We decided to keep the existing sink but change out the faucet--which really makes a difference. We also added new lighting, towel hooks, and furniture from Ikea!

ENTRYWAY: This is still a work in progress, but at least most of the clutter is gone. I am IN LOVE with this light and I love that it's the first and last thing I see when I come and leave the house.


LIVING ROOM: So I fell in love with this wallpaper and we chose all the furniture based on those colors and style. We enjoy this room so much and are so happy with how it turned out. And the Ikea sofa is COMFY!!! We can't wait to add more personal touches to this room little by little.


DINING ROOM: This is still a work-in-progress, but we really love our "retro" wallpaper and school desk dining table. It's a big trend here now to get a bench instead of separate chairs. It's cheaper and allows for more flexible seating. We still need to get curtains for this room (it's actually quite hard to match things to this pattern!) so for now here is a view of the shed in the backyard!

KITCHEN: This makes me wanna sing, "You go and save the best for lastttttttt!!!!" (I try to have a theme song for each project and Seisuke looooves it! ;-P ) Well, this room definitely gets the most attention and I do believe there is no kitchen like it! We still have other really cool plans for the kitchen, but for now we are happy to be using it--especially after a HUGE ant problem this summer! Let's pray the ants (or any other bugs) don't come back!!!

Remember this?

HECK NO was I going to live with the existing kitchen!


New handles from Ikea just make everything look more updated...cabinets will be taken care of later...

I had to cover up the ugly, beat up wood floor with this fun (but cheap!) rug from Ikea.
We got all these never-been-used-hand-me-down dishes from various Japanese relatives.

I can have a miso soup party with all these bowls!
Well, I think we are all caught up now! We definitely keep busy keeping this house clean while still trying to fix it up more. Sometimes we just look around at all the bright white walls and are like, I can't believe you wallpapered this WHOLE HOUSE! Isn't he amazing? We love how things are turning out so far and are excited for the next set of updates....probably by the end of this year....hopefully! ;)

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