Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Brotherly Love

I thought I would share a little project I did recently as a surprise for my brother. Matty is the youngest of the four Baker children, and the last one to graduate from college. Upon graduation, his plan was to live here at our parents house. Coming home with a very impressive two degrees and a minor (that's right - my boy's wicked smaht) it was clear that he was no longer the little one, and that he had officially become an adult, much to his dismay. His bedroom, however, was still stuck somewhere back in his middle school days. Luckily, the (super cool at the time) robot wallpaper of his childhood had been taken down, but the room was still covered in messy magazine clippings, sports memorabilia, and absolute junk. (I don't mean to throw you under the bus here, kid, but you know it was bad...) Now, being the youngest, Matty sort of got the shaft when we moved into this house. His "bedroom" is actually a ten foot by ten foot portion of another room that was split in half, with no closet to speak of and a tiny sliver of a window. I know he will kill me for doing this, but let's just take a peek at this before photo (in his defense, this is actually more of a 'halfway through cleaning it out' picture - it wasn't quite this messy to start with, but it was pretty close)

And all the stuff that was under the bed....probably there since we moved in....16 years ago?

Pretty dismal, no? So, being the awesome big sister that I am (right, buddy?) I thought that as a graduation gift to little number 4 (and a fun design project for myself), I would redo the room to make it feel a little more adult and a little less pre-pubescent. Matty just so happens to be one of the coolest brothers ever; he is always putting others before himself, helping around the house, and has assisted with enough apartment/dorm/home moves to earn him the nickname 'Llama'. So I wanted him to be able to come home from college and move into a brand new, clean space without having to worry about figuring out where to put everything or having to fix everything up.

The major issue with the room was figuring out where to put all of his stuff. Matty has a pretty impressive DVD and book collection, so storage was key. Although I would have loved to have gotten all new furniture, plenty of what he had was in fine shape, so I worked around those pieces. One amazing trip to Ikea later, the bulk of my shopping was done. I had to keep the dark blue carpeting, so I thought I would go with a neutral color on the walls, keeping it light so the room wouldn't feel as heavy as it previously had. While I like the color I chose (Behr's Castle Stone), it wasn't exactly what I had wanted for this space (it's a bit too yellow). But it did the job, and Matty has no idea the difference, so whatev. Just painting the room made such a huge difference - it went from tiny and dark to light and bright in just a couple coats. Even though there is a ton of furniture squished into this tiny room, there is still plenty more space to move around now that everything is organized.

The after pictures!

And the awesome reaction face! I think he likes it!

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