2013 Year In Review

Well, hello there! Happy 2014! I’ve been away from the blog for the last week, trying to get stuff done around the house, and get ahead on some projects that I’m excited to share with you.

In the meantime, I’ve been sharing the highlights of 2013 over on my Facebook page for the 100,000+ new folks who have joined us over the last few months. (30,000+ new folks just in the last two or so weeks! Wow!!)

So I thought I’d put them all in one place for easy access, and so that you can get caught up just in case you missed something.

condo hallway - smallCondo Hallway Turned “Laundry Room”: The very first thing I tackled in 2013 was the completion of my condo hallway, which I turned into a “laundry room.” I opened up the coat closet on the left and added built-in cabinets and a countertop work area, and the washer and dryer are hidden behind the curtain on the right.
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cedar bathroom countertop - small$35 Bathroom Countertop Made From Cedar Fence Pickets: In January, I started a bathroom makeover. First project — replace the old, stained, chipped laminate countertop with something new. Being on a tight budget, I had to get creative.
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bathroom cabinet doors - smallDIY Cabinet Doors: As part of my budget bathroom makeover, I wanted new vanity cabinet doors, but didn’t want to spend lots of money on new, pre-made doors, or on any new tools (like joiners, routers, etc.). I came up with a way to make beautiful doors with only basic tools that most DIYers would have — circular saw, miter saw, and brad nailer.
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faux wood plank walls - smallFaux Wood Plank Walls For Less Than $35: As part of my condo bathroom makeover, I did wood plank walls…but I didn’t use wood. What I did use made this wall treatment incredibly affordable!
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painted bathtub - smallPainted Fiberglass Bathtub: As part of my condo bathroom makeover, I needed a “new” tub on a budget. Replacing the worn and stained fiberglass tub and surround weren’t in the budget, so I painted them. The difference was remarkable, and it was still holding up perfectly when we moved out in mid-October.
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faux mosaic tile mirror - smallMosaic “Tile” Mirror Made From Wood Yardsticks: As part of my budget bathroom makeover, I made a mosaic tile mirror. Since I couldn’t find actual tiles the right color, I had to improvise. I used wood yard sticks, cut them into small til-sized pieces, painted them, and used them just like tile, grout and all.
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dimensional artwork made with drywall mud - smallDimensional Artwork Made With Drywall Mud: This was another project I did for my bathroom makeover. I made the frames using a Kreg Jig®, and then painted some vines and made dimensional flowers with drywall mud.
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painted floor cloth - smallPainted Floor Cloth Using Scrap Vinyl Flooring: I needed a “rug” for my bathroom makeover, but needed very specific colors. I knew I wouldn’t be able to find one, so I used the back side of a piece of vinyl flooring to paint a floral floor cloth.
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pleated shower curtain - smallExtra Long DIY Shower Curtain With Pleated Accents: The final big project for my bathroom makeover was a decorative shower curtain. I like shower curtains to be extra long and hang almost to the ceiling like draperies, but I cut down on the cost by using an extra flat sheet that I already had on hand.
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bathroom makeover - smallSmall Condo Bathroom Makeover: In March, I finished the bathroom makeover. It went from ugly, outdated, and frankly, quite disgusting, to bright, colorful, and updated on a relatively low budget.
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bookcase wall - smalDIY Built-In Bookcase Wall: In June, I finished my biggest building project yet — a 12-foot-wide built-in bookcase. I used stock upper wall cabinets from Home Depot as the base cabinets, built a solid wood countertop out of cedar 2″ x 4″ lumber using a Kreg Jig, and made the upper shelves from scratch.
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sunburst mirror - small36-inch Colorful Wood Shim Sunburst Mirror: I needed something to go on the wall between my bookshelves, and I needed it to be big and inexpensive. Wood shims fit the bill, so I created this large multi-colored sunburst mirror.
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cedar shower floor mat - smalDIY Removable Cedar Shower Floor Mat: In June, I started a second bathroom makeover. For the shower, I created this cedar floor mat. Cedar is naturally resistant to mold and decay (which is why it’s very popular for building outdoor decks), and with regular care and oiling, a floor mat like this can look great for a very long time.
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scalloped mirror - smallDIY Decorative Scalloped Mirror: As part of my bathroom makeover, I recreated a mirror that I found online that retailed for over $330. My version cost me $25.
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tiny bathroom makeover - smallTiny Condo Bathroom Makeover: In July, I finished up the second bathroom makeover in the condo. This bathroom is very tiny, but I packed in some color and a few DIY projects to make it feel more custom.
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concrete planter - smallWood & Concrete Planter: This modern concrete and wood planter is not only easy to make, but it’s very inexpensive. The sides are 12 x 12 concrete pavers, available for about $1.50 each.
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picket fence headboard - small$25 Wood Headboard: You can make this headboard as big or small as you want, in just about any shape you can imagine, and for only about $25. Quite a bargain for a headboard!
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house - smallOur New (to us) 65-Year-Old Fixer Upper: August was an exciting month for us. We bought a house! It’s a serious fixer-upper (my favorite kind!!), and will be the main focus of my blog and all of my projects in 2014 (and probably 2015, 2016, 2017…). If you haven’t seen our old fixer-upper in all if its “before” glory, come take the tour!
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refinished hardwood floors - smallRefinished Hardwood Floors: The first major project I did on our new house was to rip out all of the carpet and refinish the original hardwood floors. This was possibly the most challenging DIY project I’ve ever done. I thought the sanding would never end!!
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raised platform bedRaised Platform Bed Frame: The first thing I made for our new house was a raised platform bed frame for our bedroom. It’s as far as I’ve gotten so far on our bedroom makeover, but it’s a start!
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lotus flower mirror- small40-inch Metallic Lotus Flower Mirror: This was the first decorative item I made for my living room makeover. I was inspired by a similar mirror I found on Layla Grayce that retails for over $1500.
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Roman shades - smallDIY Relaxed Roman Shades: After a couple of weeks of indecision, I finally decided to use relaxed Roman shades on my living room window. I have a step-by-step tutorial showing how I made them.
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ottoman - smallDIY Diamond-Tufted Coffee Table Ottoman: This was my final project of 2013. I was inspired by an ottoman that I saw at Layla Grayce that retails for over $1200. Mine cost me $280.
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And that’s a wrap on 2013! I’ll see y’all back here tomorrow for a brand new year of projects and progress on my little fixer-upper!

The blog will also be getting a new look tonight, and with that new look will come better functionality. Hopefully those of you who read the blog on mobile devices and tablets will have a much easier time from now on.

Here’s to a happy, healthy, and very productive 2014!! :)

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  1. Chris says

    WOW! I hadn’t realized that it was just the start of last year when you were doing the hallway. It seems like so long ago for that, but yet it seemed like you had only JUST done the bathrooms (didn’t realize it was as long ago as it was now!).

  2. Betty says

    Thanks for the recap. I started following you at the end of the condo phase. Now I can go back and take a closer look at the earlier postings. I want your energy!

  3. Dee says

    Seeing all you accomplished in 2013 is absolutely amazing! I’m looking forward to seeing what you have planned for 2014 and beyond. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Silje says

    I just got to say that you are truely an artist. Everything is so clever and amezing. Wish I could do it. For now Ill have to just watch and enjoy. Its awesome, keep it up.
    Have a happy new year =)

    *hugs from Norway*

  5. Sue says

    Happy 2014 to you and your husband! I couldn’t believe all the projects you completed in 2013. Amazing and each one was fabulous! Thanks for the recap and the inspiration!

  6. says

    It is amazing to see all that you have accomplished in 2013! Wish you have an even better 2014. I started following you towards the end of the condo bathroom redo. Even though I have zero knowledge about hardware and stuff, I love looking at how you transform rooms. Looking forward to all the projects in your new house!

  7. Claire says

    hi Kristi,
    Happy New Year to you both! i love love love your blog! your creativity and constant inspiration from the SIMPLEST things is astounding!
    your new home will soon be as you want it to be … your energy, resourcefulness and can do attitude will see to that ;)
    did i read it right – you have 100,000 NEW FOLKS!!! wow! amazing. how many followers in total if it’s not rude to ask? (i’m not a blogger so please don’t answer if it’s not an appropriate question).
    so many INCREDIBLE projects well done hon. so glad you did the review, there were a few i missed. thanks.
    Claire in Australia …
    ps your Ottoman is amazing …

  8. Kim says

    Just saw your year in review and I’m exhausted just watching you work! You have great skills and I love the way you write, it sounds like we are sharing a cup of coffee as you explain the details to me. Thanks for sharing your gifts with us and I can’t wait to see what you do next!

  9. Kimberly says

    Wow! Please give me just a moment to bow down to you “I’m not worthy!” style! That’s an AMAZING amount of work you got done. I wish you could bottle your energy, enthusiasm, and skill, I’d buy that stuff by the case!

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