Friday, December 30, 2011

Covering an Old Window

One of the many joys of buying an older home is finding out where the original house ended and additions began. In our house, inefficient, oddly placed windows were the tell-tale sign. Until last spring, we had a window in one of our bathrooms that looked directly into the laundry room. And while this was very convenient when I wanted to watch my kids bath while I did laundry, it left a lot to be desired when someone had to actually use the toilet! This year, we turned that window into an adorable little wall niche in the bathroom. I'm still thrilled about it and our new found privacy!

The second window we decided to address was the window in our basement kitchen (yes, we have 2 kitchens) that looks into the children's outdoor toy storage/garage. Last year, we replaced all the windows in our home with new energy efficient windows except this window. Best $10K we ever spent on this house! Why replace a window that we would rater just get rid of, right?
In this picture, we are removing all the flooring in the basement to replace it with laminate flooring. But, you can see the window that looks out into our toy storage room/garage/garage door. It was just ugly. Okay, so the entire space is awful in this picture. Doesn't it always look worse before it gets better?

Since funds were pretty low (like non-existant) after repairing all the water damage this year, we had to get creative. First, Carl patched the window with extra plywood we had from an old daybed. Between the plywood sheets, he added insulation and Great Stuff for insullation.
After putting in the plywood, we realized how dark the room looked. The kitchen is in the basement, after all. We agreed that adding a mirror to this space would look great. But, having a mirror cut could be expensive. A look at craigslist and our local second-hand stores didn't yield anything in our price range either. So, we began looking through all our junk and spied this!

We were no longer using the hutch portion of this dresser and decided to store it. The mirror was a perfect fit for the space. So, Carl popped out the mirror, glued it into the space and added some moulding to secure it in and to look nice. Here's how it turned out.

I painted the tile backsplash white. Yes, i painted the ceramic tile. I'm not that concerned because we never use this kitchen. I decided not to paint the cabinets (for now) because they are in excellent original condition. These cabinets are original to the house. So, they are approximately 50 years old. They have a very mid-century feel which works well with the rest of our theme in the room. They polished up beautifully too! Honestly, I hate the light fixture globes, but Carl loves them and they match the family room rug, so they will stay. I added some lime green accessories like towels, rug and a clock to tie the color scheme into the adjacent room.

As I mentioned before, I never style pictures because I just don't have the time/desire. This is how it looks every day (we don't use this kitchen much). I always keep a cutting board out (because I am obsessed with cutting boards!) and the dogs messed up the carpet. Oh, and I usually walk around the house in a red apron and my hair a mess. We are beyond pleased with this project. Now, we can spend time in our family room kitchen without viewing the old, ugly and inefficient window. This old house is slowly becoming one that reflects our family.