evolution of my house | part 6 | the master bedroom

Marian ParsonsBefore and Afters, Master Bathroom, My House

…and now we’re at the master bedroom in this “evolution series” and, oh my, it’s a doozie.  This room made me want to hit my head against a wall for years.  It stumped me.  I kept making stupid, decorating decisions that I knew were stupid as I was making them.  I wasted so much time and money on things I wasn’t in love with…all for the sake of getting it done.  Sigh.  Tell me I’m not alone.

A couple of years ago, though, after yards of fabric and gallons of paint, I finally got on the right path and I’ve been able to see it through to completion.

Miss Mustard Seed-28-2

So, let’s start at the very beginning.  A very good place to start.   Humming along?

Okay.  THIS two-tone mauve wall was definitely NOT one of my favorite things.   And what’s worse than a two-tone mauve wall is adding yellow, red and green to it.  Which is exactly what I did.


I had painted the master bedroom walls in our last house in two-tone yellow vertical stripes, so my bedding, slipcovers and pillows looked great with that.  The two-tone mauve wall?  Not so much.  Throw in a yard sale dresser ($35), hand-me-down vanity, beige carpet (and a stand-up fan), and the result is a mish-mash room that left me at a loss.  And, even if I knew what I wanted to do with the room, I didn’t have the money to do it.  We just lived with it and kept the door closed.


I don’t have pictures of the next two “stages”.  Those were pre-blog.  I removed the border and painted the bottom half of the wall in a deep red (SW Red Bay), that was leftover paint from our last house, and the top half in Dove White, leftover from the dining room.  Better than pink, but still not what I wanted at all.  It was just what I had on hand that would make it better.

I finally was able to buy some paint and I picked a very un-Marian greenish gold.  It was a strange color that I was never able to match fabric to, no matter how many samples and remnants I tried.

So, I went to what I knew and repainted the walls blue.  Again, I picked paint before I had fabric to match, so the hunt began for a pretty fabric to compliment that exact blue.

I painted the vanity and rearranged the furniture and the room was coming along.  At least it was looking better…


I picked up this dresser on Craig’s List for $35 and my aunt gave me the pair of lamps out of her attic.

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The headboard was $5 at a yard sale, the coverlet was $10 and, since I couldn’t find a fabric to match the blue, I made pillows out of a black & white fabric.

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I also slipcovered a $30 rocker in white cotton twill.

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…and painted some yard sale night stands…

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Still wasn’t working for me.

So, time for another wall color.  (You can see how crazy this room was making me!)  This time, it was Irish Cream.

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I rearranged the furniture again and, this time, I decided to deal with the thing that was bugging me most…


…the door that connected what is now Jeff’s office to the master bedroom.  It was smack in the middle of the wall, limiting where you could place the bed and larger dressers.  We moved the bed in front of the door and covered the door with a DIY half-canopy.

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I was over-the-moon in love with that thing.  I bought an aqua toile as the primary fabric and set the color palette at aqua, brown, cream and white.  I also bought some white bedding with a Kohl’s gift card I got for my birthday.  I was working the coupons and Kohl’s cash, too!


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I also painted and added mirrored fronts to a pair of nightstands I purchased for $50 at a yard sale.

master 1


And then, I got sick of the aqua toile and the Irish Cream walls.  We took down the half canopy and moved the bed back by the window.  I bought more aqua fabric to make a skirt and new curtains (for an HGTV.com tutorial.)  And I repainted.  This time, in a pale greenish-gray with a pale blue ceiling.

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Bedroom Drapes - Beauty Shot 2

I bought and customized some sconces with ribbon to use as reading lights.

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I brought in some new furniture pieces and kept rearranging.

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We closed up the doorway on both sides and drywalled over the opening.  After living without the doorway for a while, we knew we wanted to close it permanently.

mbr 12


For my book, I made the upholstered headboard.  Again, what’s with the aqua fabric?!  I am such a blue and white girl and I don’t know why I kept going for that, even after I was already sick of it.  I think I felt stuck, because of previous choices.



The room looked really nice at this point, but I knew it still wasn’t ME.  And then, I had a great opportunity.  Home Good wanted to work with me and they gave me a $1000 gift card to help with a room makeover.  The master bedroom was finally going to look the way I wanted it to!

So, I go to Home Goods, ready to spend $1000 and I came home with this rug.

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Marian, what in the world?!  The choices I made that day were made out of impatience.  I went in thinking blue and white and I walked out with green, orange and a little blue.

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When we installed the hardwoods in the family room, we also put them in the bedroom and that made a huge difference in the look of the space.  We had plans to replace the small closet with more functional built-ins, but we never got around to it and put in trim and doors when we were hoping to sell our house last summer.

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When I had everything I picked out from Home Goods in the room, my heart sank.  I tried to talked myself into loving my choices, but I had done this too many times and finally returned everything and started over.

And then, I had another chance to get things right.  HGTV asked me to write some DIY tutorials for bedrooms.  I sent a list of everything I wanted to do in our room to my editor…  a fabric wall, painted nightstands, French-pleated drapes, planked ceiling, crown molding, a bolster pillow and ruched shams.  They hired me to do all of them, so the bedroom makeover was on and this time, I learned my lesson.  Everything would be blue and white and I wouldn’t make choices out of impatience.

I bought the bed of my dreams.  I had been eyeing the Vienne bed from Restoration Hardware for years and it went on final clearance and we were able to buy it.  This was also the time I started my partnership with Pine Cone Hill and they sent me some beautiful linens for the bed.

mbr 42

We planked the ceiling, added crown molding, painted the walls in BM Simply White, traded out the ceiling fan for a vintage chandelier and started getting the bones of the room in place.

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I moved the bed back to the wall that once had the door and starched fabric to the wall to make it a focal point. 




The “bed wall” was perfect.  I now needed to get the rug and the rest of the room sorted out.

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Here are a few things I tried…

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I finally decided to go with a jute rug, since they are inexpensive and neutral.  I needed a 9 x 13 rug, so this was the only one that was in my budget.  I also found a gorgeous French wardrobe on Craig’s List – one of my best finds ever.




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Here are a few pictures of my Christmas 2014 home tour…

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Miss Mustard Seed-256

Miss Mustard Seed-262

Miss Mustard Seed-280


And from my recent summer home tour…








Whew!!  This room has come a long way since the beginning and really tested my decorating endurance!  I think it’s a great example, though, for how off track you can get when you make quick decisions based on what’s available that moment. If I had just left things alone, squirreled away some money and taken my time to shop around, I would’ve saved myself a lot of angst over this room.

Well, I was planning on sharing the master suite all together, but the bedroom had quite a history!  So, up next will be all three of the bathrooms

If you missed the other room tours, here they are…

Part 1 | Living Room

Part 2 | Dining Room

Part 3 | Home Office

Part 4 | Kitchen

Part 5 | Family Room

Part 6 | Master Bedroom

Part 7 | Bathrooms

evolution of my house | part 6 | the master bedroom

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