Dining Room: The Simple Reason Before the Decorating Storm

The One Room Challenge is the cream of the crop for interior design remodels. This month we are working on renovating our own dining room for the design challenge!

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Dining room before the One Room Challenge

The One Room Challenge

The One Room Challenge has been around for about 12 years. It originated with the Calling It Home blog, and is sponsored by Better Homes and Gardens and other fabulous brands. This is a very popular contest among bloggers and interior designers. I have wanted to try this competition but something always seems to get in my way. This year, I have decided to join the crowd and see what happens!

Here’s how it works: There are a number of chosen designers for this competition that work with major sponsors for the event. Trust me they are rock stars! Bloggers like myself can link up our own version of the ORC each week showing the progress in our rooms. If the project is popular enough, any blogger has a chance to be a major designer the next time around and may be featured in magazines or attract major corporate sponsors. I am not working with any sponsors for this event, just winging it this time around! The competition is held twice each year in October and April and lasts for 6 weeks.

Our dining room will be the subject of my posts which I will post each Wednesday through October and early November. This week is the introduction and “game plan” of the event. You see see the other participants in this challenge here.

ORC Blog Schedule

Here is my schedule for the renovations throughout the month:

Week 1: Painting

Week 2: Stenciling

Week 3: Window Treatments

Week 4: Table Improvements

Week 5: Wall and Lighting Decor

Week 6: Accessories and Final Reveal

Here we go! This is my for this room includes lightning up the space, and adding some color and pattern. Our home is an old urban farmhouse. Most of the rooms are painted beige. However, I am not a beige kind of girl. I know the world is full of beige rooms that are beautiful, but I am ready to move away from the plain neutral decor in this room. I am craving color and pattern!

 

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Mood Board for Dining room renovation by Designers Sweet Spot

My favorite decorating style is probably farmhouse but I am smitten with English style antique furnishings, fine art and eclectic accessories. Does that make me English, Farmhouse, Transitional or just confused? Guess we will find out! Ha, ha!

Interior designer Tricia Guild has been at the forefront of cutting edge interiors for many years. I have follower her for as long as I can remember and she never fails to inspire me. Our dining room renovation is inspired by her classic furniture mixed with modern colors and fabrics. This inspirational video from www.DesignersGuild.com is full of ideas for our dining room.  I have included it because you really can’t get the full idea of what I want to create without seeing these incredible rooms in all their glory.

Looking forward to the challenge! You can see last year’s final One Room Challenge posts here!  

Be sure to stop back to see the progress each week! Sign up here for updates! 

Be sure to Pin this post for later!

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Here are some of my most popular design posts:

Thrifted Dining Room

Dining Room Reveal

Living Room Revealed

20 Stenciled Wall Transformations to Inspire You

Urban Loft

How to Stencil Furniture Like a Boss

Delightfully Easy Crock Pot Roast Chicken Recipe

Crock pot recipes are great for the days when you don’t have time to cook and need a hot meal ready when you get home. This recipe super easy and very tasty! This post contains affiliate links. When you make a purchase I will receive a small commission at no additional charge to you.

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Crock pot chicken with lemon and marinade.

Crock Pot Roast Chicken

There is something so comforting about having a meal ready to eat when you get home. We eat crock pot meals 2 or 3 times a week during the fall and winter season because they are so easy to throw together and taste delicious.

This roast chicken recipe can be made with frozen chicken breasts, whole chicken or even chicken legs and thighs. I look for chicken on sale and stock up when I can find it less than $2.00 per pound. You can order organic chicken by the case and have it delivered to your door for only $1.39 with Zycon Fresh. 

Crock Pot Roast Chicken Variations

Deliciously Easy Crock Pot Chicken Recipe|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com
Photo Credit: Copyright: robynmac / 123RF Stock Photo

There are several ways to make this dish, I tend to vary it depending on what’s lurking in my refrigerator at the time. Sometimes I use fresh garlic, olive oil and lemon juice, some times I use the bottled salad dressing as listed. Either way it turns out great and your family will love it!

Crock Pot Beef Roast Recipe

Crock Pot Beef Roast Recipe

Ingredients

  • 4 lbs. chicken breasts, thighs, or legs (thawed)
  • 1 bottle Paul Newman's Olive Oil Italian Dressing (or 4 cloves chopped garlic, 1/4 cup olive oil and 1/2 cup lemon juice)
  • Green Olives
  • Lemon slices and fresh cilantro for garnish
  • Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Wash and clean chicken.
  2. Add to crock pot.
  3. Pour salad dressing over top of chicken, cover.
  4. Cook on high for 6-7 hours or until chicken is falling off the bone.
  5. Add lemon slices, olives and cilantro for garnish.
  6. Serve hot with your favorite rice or potato dish and cooked vegetable.

We love this dish as leftovers too. You can remove the chicken from the bones and serve it on a salad or in a sandwich with mayo and your favorite veggies.  I cook a large quantity of chicken at a time in this manner, freeze any leftovers and add it to my next batch of homemade chicken soup. Anyway you look at it, it’s easy and fast!

If you are interested in being an affiliate for Zycon Fresh you can sign up here. They have a wonderful affiliate program and bloggers just love it! 

Deliciously Easy Crock Pot Roast Chicken Recipe|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

 

Vintage Wash Nightstand Stunning Before and After

Repurposing old furniture is an inexpensive way to get high quality furniture at a great price. This nightstand redo will have you looking twice at all those old wooden pieces in your house! This post is sponsored by Joann Fabrics and Deco Art. Any opinions given are completely my own.

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After Vintage Wash photo

Nothing gets my creative juices flowing more than a good painting project! This thrifted nightstand is part of our bedroom furniture. I purchased it at a garage sale for $35.00 a couple of years ago. It is a high quality piece of furniture, definitely worth putting some time and effort into preserving.

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The “before” nightstand was originally very dark wood.

I love furniture pieces with great storage. You can never have enough storage! This little table has both drawer and shelve storage. We keep extra bedding and blankets in the bottom shelves of it and store miscellaneous clutter in the drawer. The clean lines of this table are what attracted me to it, I am not one for a lot of fussy details. Although the wood was in fairly good condition, it was definitely in need of a new look and I was pleased when Deco Art asked me to try their new Vintage Effect Wash product. This was a great opportunity!

I started with a grey tone base, then added the Vintage Wash on top for a beautiful vintage patina. Here’s how you can recreate this look on your own!

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Nightstand with Chalky finish paint

Vintage Wash Nightstand Project Directions:

  1. Lightly sand the table with a 80 grit sanding block. Wipe clean with a soft cloth to remove remaining dust.
  2. Paint the first coat with Americana Decor Chalky Finish Paint in Primitive (light grey). Let dry.Vintage Wash Nightstand|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com
  3.  Paint again with Deco Art Vintage Effect Wash in White. The Primitive grey tone becomes a softer shade with the wash coating on top. You can add more coats of Vintage Wash until you reach the desired vintage look.
  4. Enjoy!I didn’t replace the hardware on this piece, but left it just as it was. I like the worn brass look of it. Don’t forget to Pin this post! Thanks to Deco Art and Joann Fabrics for sponsoring!

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15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor

Fall is finally here! Although, it still doesn’t quite feel like it in most parts of the country, it’s time to bring out the pumpkins! Here are some of our favorite porches to inspire your fall porch decor. 

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Nothing says fall quite like cornstalks, pumpkins, and mums.  Head over to House of Hawthornes to check out the rest of this classic fall porch and get a closer look at that cute wreath!

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Fall and farmhouse seem to go hand in hand.  Seeking Lavendar Lane chose muted colors to complete the ascetic of her beautiful home!  This porch decor could also be easily repurposed for other seasons, too.

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Some of my favorite decor has been something I pulled together using items I already had lying around my home.  I also used a few pieces of Indian corn to add some fall flair to my door.  More on that over at Designers Sweet Spot.

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

This is a fun play on the classic choice of pumpkins and mums.  Hymns & Verses used a more neutral palette for her decor, but accented it with the bright yellow mums. How fun!

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What a cozy looking porch! Shaken Together Life used this fun chalkboard to list some of her favorite things about fall, we couldn’t agree with her list more!

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Here’s another chalkboard that’s giving us handwriting envy! The candles add such a warm feel especially on those cool fall nights. Check out the tutorial for that beautiful wreath over at Ella Claire Inspired.

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

If you’re wanting something simple for your porch decor this year, Today’s Creative Life might have the perfect solution! This DIY Corn Wreath could be a great solution for many years to come.

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Living at the beach shouldn’t keep you from decorating for fall! Sand Dollar Lane did a great job of incorporating fall decor into her costal farmhouse. What a perfect solution for those of you lucky enough to live at the beach!

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Little Vintage Nest was able to decorate her porch with one trip to the pumpkin patch and some antiques she already owned! I love the creativity of using things she had to create a porch that felt like an extension of her home.

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Some people live for Halloween! If all these muted pumpkins and mums are leaving you wanting something a bit more colorful, head over to Uncookie Cutter for some whimsical inspiration.

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.comAn Oregon Cottage shares some great tips + tricks on ways to think out of the box when it comes to your fall decor. She moves furniture around to create new spaces to appreciate the new season, and the result is beautiful!

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Here is a simple idea for those of you who are wanting to do something different this year! 2 Bees in a Pod created such a cozy sitting area on her porch this season, it seems like the perfect place for some warm cider and a good book while the sun sets.

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Who says garland is just for Christmas? Not Our Southern Home! She also suggests using a mixture of real pumpkins and fake to save some money.  It’s nice to have something to use again next year!

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Tara over at Lehman Lane shares her pretty fall porch with us.  She also created a super cute concrete pumpkin! You’ll definitely  want to check that out.

15 Fall Porches to Inspire Your Decor|Designers Sweet Spot|www.designerssweetspot.com

Feeling the need for some DIY in your future? Tips From a Typical Mom shares a great tutorial complete with photos on how to create this beautiful wooden sign! Sometimes the simplest decor can be the best.

Are you ready for fall yet? I’m ready for some cooler sweater weather and a bonfire! Let us know if you’re inspired to decorate your own porch by these beautiful ideas.

 

Remember to pin this post for later! 

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Fast and Easy Pumpkin Pie Bar Treats

Delicious Pumpkin Bar Treats can be made with canned or fresh pumpkin. They are a rich and satisfying desert that will satisfy even the pickiest of eaters.

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Fast and Easy Pumpkin Pie Bar Treats

Pumpkin Pie Bar Treats

Our family eats loads of pumpkin dishes in the fall. Everything from muffins and breads to soups, ice cream, cookies and pie. Sometimes you just can’t get enough. This Pumpkin Pie Bar recipe is sure to be a favorite with your family. It’s a breeze to make and everyone always loves it.

Delicious Pumpkin Bar Treats

Delicious Pumpkin Bar Treats

Ingredients

  • Bars:
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 cup coconut oil
  • 1 16 oz can pumpkin pie mix
  • 2 cups flour (can also use gluten free flour)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Icing:
  • 2 8 oz. packages of softened cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup softened butter (1 stick)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 cup powdered sugar

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, mix together eggs, sugar, oil, and pumpkin.
  2. Stir in flour, baking powder cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.
  3. Add salt and baking soda.
  4. Mix thoroughly.
  5. Grease 9 x 13" pan. Pour in mixture.
  6. Bake at 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes until a tooth pick comes out clean.
  7. Let cool.
  8. Mix frosting by beating cream cheese, butter and vanilla until smooth. Add powdered sugar. Spread on bars.

If you love this post, try some of these other recipe ideas:

Molasses Cookies

Secrets of the Best Snickerdoodle Cookies

Guilt Free, Gluten Free Chocolate Waffles for Any Diet

Gluten Free Chocolate Oatmeal Bars

Lemon and Lavender Sugar Cookies

15 Fall Apple Recipes You Need to Try

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