We started with the living room. Since of course we're both unemployed and (as always) poor as church mice, we were forced to do our renovations in the cheapest way possible. So we scoured our local paint shop for a bright color for the living room, finding the perfect color in their "oops" section. We bought a $35 gallon of paint for only $5 because someone had the color mixed but then didn't like it. Score! To compliment our fabulous new curtains, we painted the walls a deeply saturated orangey-red.
Here's Deb, hard at work:
The hallway was next. We decided on a soft, saturated "organic green" for one wall. (We're leaving the other white, for monetary and aesthetic reasons) As Deb was busy putting together our new Ikea bookshelf and getting the living room back in order, I ended up painting the whole hallway myself:
Next we outfitted the living room. We needed a major furniture overhaul. We had an old pub table and two stools that was just taking up space. The futon that was passed down to us from the previous tenant was disgusting and old-- it needed to go away. It was too big to haul in our car, so we gave Uhuru Furniture a call. Uhuru is an amazing local organization that you can donate your used furniture to and all of the proceeds go to African relief. Plus you can buy furniture from them too-- great stuff for cheap! And the best part of the deal? If you're making a donation, they come to your house and pick it up for you! Check them out, they are really awesome.
Uhuru came yesterday and took away the table and stools, but unfortunately they rejected the futon because the mattress had stains on it. (From the previous tenant) So we hauled it outside, set it on the curb and wrote a blurb on craigslist advertising a FREE futon frame and mattress, available for curbside pickup. We worried that it might rain overnight and no one would want it, but we shouldn't have. Literally within 10 minutes of posting on craigslist we spotted a minivan hauling both the frame and the mattress away. Amazing!
Our purple loveseat had to go as well. We needed a bigger couch to fit the two of us, and it really didn't fit in the living room. Hoping to recover some money from this venture, we posted another ad on craigslist, offering it for $100. We got an immediate response from a very nice woman who came and checked it out yesterday. She hauls it away tomorrow.
Now our living room was clean and painted, but empty. Back to craigslist we went, looking for a nice sectional couch for cheap. And after one disappointing venture with a stuck-up snob in Rittenhouse Square, we found the PERFECT sectional being sold by a lawyer who was closing up his office. The color is perfect, the size is perfect, and because it was in an office rather than a home it has very little wear & tear. Deb used her amazing bargaining skills on the lawyer and got it to a price we could afford. It took two trips to haul the whole thing home, but we finally made it:
(Sorry about the blurry pic, still taking pictures on my phone while I save up for that new camera!)
Today we plan to hang up all of our artwork and photos in the hallway and maybe get around to waxing the kitchen floor. We're going to spend the weekend cleaning and arranging the bedroom and spare room.
So our house is really shaping up into something pretty amazing! I can't believe how much work it's taking, but it feels really good to see things coming together. It's nice to work together on this project-- for the first time in my adult life, I really feel like I have a home, instead of just an apartment.