While I spent most of the month posting recipes  (and a huge thanks, again, to everyone who contributed), I was also busy sprucing up our house and doing some fun DIY projects.
I had about a week off earlier this month, during which time I decided to paint our bedroom, refinish the floors in our bedroom, the spare room, the hallway connecting them and refresh the floor finish in our dining room. That sounds like a lot, but I had about 10 days to do it, and I've been procrastinating on the floors for years, literally.
Our bedroom had been painted a light blue. I painted it the same day I closed on the house, four years ago this month. Previously, it had been the yellow gold color that was in almost every other room in the house. I'd wanted a calming, icy blue, but the yellow shone through a bit, making it more green and drab than I would have liked. You can see a before photo on the left.
I've also always felt like our room is the most thrown-together in our house, with no real cohesive look. We have a variety of wood furniture in a variety of wood tones, brown polka-dotted curtains  and a multicolored quilt my mom and I made when I was in high school.
To fix this, I thought a coat of bright white paint would help bring all the different browns together, and also make a backdrop to make our vertical filing cabinet  really pop. (More on turning the cabinets into true pieces of furniture coming soon.)
After loving the results I got with Dutch Boy's Ultra White in our bathroom  and hallway , I figured it would be the perfect color for our room. I bought a semi-gloss to ensure easy cleaning and even more light reflection. Plus, I figured it would be smart to paint before I refinished the floor. I was right - any and all paint spatters were easily removed during the refinishing process.
And, while I had our mantel headboard  off the wall, I decided to reupholster it. I never really liked the original fabric, and had looked for a modern botanical-print fabric. Instead, at The I.D.E.A. Store , I found a white and brown plaid that I thought would blend in really well with my white-and-brown color scheme. (And no, I never dreamed I'd have a bedroom with that color scheme, but it seems to work.)
I originally thought I'd take the upholstered panel off the back and rip off the original fabric. But then Rob reminded me we used heavy-duty adhesive to stick it on there. So instead, I cut the plaid fabric down to size, hemmed it on all sides and stretched it over the panel, attaching it to the plywood backing with hot glue. This will make for easy (re-)reupholstering if I get sick of the plaid, and also will give me the ability to take it off and wash it if necessary.
These changes and a few other quick DIYs (more later on those) make our bedroom feel so much bigger. I think part of it is, the white paint blends with the white ceiling, which gives the illusion of more space. The refinished floors also reflect more light and feel silky smooth underneath our bare feet. I added a large mirror on one wall, in addition to a few others we already had in the room. I love mirrors in our small house. They make everything seem so much bigger. We bought this new-to-us one at the same estate sale where we found the metal file catalogs.
It feels like a truly grown-up space, and is so calming. I'm so pleased with the results.