As you can imagine, the events of my husband’s sudden passing put all other projects in my life on hold. And to be honest, I wasn’t even sure I would care enough to finish the dining room project that he and I started together. But as the days after his death moved on, I found that I needed to have something to focus on to get my mind off my pain and grief, if only for a few hours a day. So, with the help of my family, we did what we could to finish my dining room.
Here is a photo of the room before we got started with this project. As I said before, there was nothing wrong with the room, it was just pretty boring. And there was the issue of the giant boob light chandelier that just had to go.
Before my husband passed, the room looked much like this: board and batten was mostly installed, but I still needed to add the second rail of board and batten, as well as paint the upper walls, then caulk and prime and paint the board and batten. The weekend before my husband passed, I managed to install the rest of the board and batten and paint the upper walls Stonington Gray. About a week after my husband’s passing, my dad helped me caulk, prime and paint the board and batten, while my father-in-law installed our beautiful new chandelier. Once that was done, all I had to do was await the delivery of my rug and install some curtains.
Here is how the room turned out. I think it’s beautiful, despite it not being completely finished as I had envisioned it. I didn’t do some of the projects that I would’ve like to get to, and some of my accessories to finish the room (like the giant tobacco baskets) have not yet arrived, but I think the dining room turned out beautifully despite the circumstances and the delays. I know Garry would have been very proud of me for transforming this room, largely on my own. He would also have loved to see our dads working together to help me get it done.
I don’t really know what’s going to happen to this house now that he’s gone. Right now, it doesn’t make financial sense for me to keep it, but it kills me to think about selling the home he and I had chosen to raise our family in. I will be exploring options for working from home part time (I am being encouraged to finally start my online design consulting business I’ve been to afraid to start), but I also don’t think I should make any big decisions until after the holidays. Getting through birthdays (my kids), Thanksgiving, and Christmas will be hard enough as it is.
What I love most about this dining room makeover, besides it being the last project Garry and I worked on together, is that it was done on a limited budget. I spent the most on the rug, which was very inexpensive for the size and quality. I really love this rug. The chandelier was the next expensive item, but it was still very reasonably priced. All in, we spent about $600, including all the lumber and paint for the board and batten. I’d say we achieved our goal of creating a beautiful French Country style dining room without breaking the bank!
Dining Room Resource List
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- Stonington Gray paint on upper walls
- Behr paint and primer on board and batten (no tint, just straight out of the can)
- Safavieh Adriondack Oriental Silver & Ivory Vintage Distressed Rug
- Turned Leg Dining Table Set (similar)
- White Parsons Chairs (similar)
- Tobacco Baskets
- Rustic Wire Chandelier
- Ekena Millwork Ceiling Medallion
- Ikea Lenda Curtains
- Ikea Racka Curtain Rods
Don’t forget to head over to Calling It Home to check out all of the other One Room Challenge participants and their amazing projects!