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Whew, you guys! We’ve been putting EVERYTHING into the barn – or the guest quarters – the last couple of weeks! New floors throughout, complete bathroom reno and now I’m putting on the finishing touches in my department: the decor! Honestly, the transformation is amazing and I wish we could clone ourselves and move our double selves right into the barn ๐Ÿ˜‰ LOL

Bathroom Reno by House of Menig

So on that note, there will be pictures in a few weeks, once everything is ready for our AirBnB guests!!

The other all-consuming project has been (and still is) the garden. Spring has sprung and we’re in the process of making all sorts of major decisions for the outdoors. When we first saw the house, the yard was unkept and quite ugly. Now glorious possibilities are emerging!

We began with the most pressing matter, the veggie garden. I grew up seeing my mom and both my grandmas gardening, heck, when I was little my grandma even let me have my own little plot once. What did I grow, you ask? Carrots! Not because I love carrots all that much, but because they attract swallow tail butterflies….. I was quite the nature girl ๐Ÿ˜‰

Back in March, I started an experiment called Winter Sowing. It’s a hands-off approach to raising your own plants from seed, without having to fuss over them for weeks. Basically you craft these make-shift tiny greenhouses out of milk jugs (and other containers), sow your seeds in the middle of winter to early spring and let nature take it from there. I’m happy to report that my experiment has been a full success!! It may not have looked so pretty, all this trash sitting around the kitchen entry, buuut I have plenty of healthy veggie seedlings growing that can soon be transplanted into the raised garden beds!

New England Vegetable Gardening Plans by House of MenigNew England Vegetable Gardening Plans by House of MenigWinter Sowing by House of Menig

We decided to create raised garden beds and make it a liveable space at the same time. Nothing beats versatility and functionality if you’re Swiss LOL

The nine beds were built in one afternoon, and they’re really quite simple to make. For each 6×4′ raised garden beds, we bought two boards 2 inches thick, 12 inches wide and 10 feet long. Then we cut them into 6 + 4 foot pieces and assembled the beds with outdoor screws.

Raised Garden Beds New England Vegetable Gardening Plans by House of Menig

We started out the first plot of beds with stakes already attacked to the corners. Later though, as we banged them into the ground, we had to remove the stakes, bang them in first and then attach the beds to the stakes. It was the only way to truly align the beds.

How to Build a Raised Garden Bed by House of MenigHow to Build a Raised Garden Bed by House of Menig

The veggie garden as it’s coming along…

New England Vegetable Gardening Plans by House of MenigHow to Build a Raised Garden Bed by House of MenigHow to Build a Raised Garden Bed by House of Menig

Miss Leya just loooooves to be part of everything. Such a great + happy pup!

How to Build a Raised Garden Bed by House of Menig

As you can see, we really wanted to stay away from a square box type of garden. Instead we wanted something unique and interesting to the eye. I think we accomplished these tasks! I cannot help myself looking outside the windows and just getting so excited for the next step – putting in soil and finally transplanting my seedlings into their new home!

Eventually there will be a pretty pathway leading up to the garden, with a large archway covered in climbing roses at the entrance. I’m also thinking of adding extra interest by building a cucumber trellis for the far back middle bed, as well as two vertical obelisks for pole beans or other climbers.

 

You know what the best thing is about paint? It’s not permanent!

When I painted the sewing nook blue, I felt right away that it wasn’t IT. Sure, the actual blue color was pretty, but it didn’t make me feel inspired or craftsy at all. So, back to the drawing board and a couple of months later, I was ready to buy a new gallon of paint!

Pink Wall in Craft Room by House of MenigPink Wall in Craft Room by House of Menig

This is what the room looked opposite of the pink wall….. LOL

Pink Wall in Craft Room by House of Menig

While I love pink, I didn’t want this nook to be overwhelming. I chose the most beautiful barely-there-pink I could find, Bridal Bouquet by the paint brand True Value. Two coats and 28 bucks later, I’m simply in LOVE with how the sewing nook turned out! The soft pink brings just the right amount of pretty into the space, without feeling too immature or girly.

Pink Wall in Craft Room by House of MenigPink Wall in Craft Room by House of Menig

The shelves Adrian built are just the BEST!! They are super strong and can easily hold all of my craft supplies – and they even make things look super good! Way to go for a half-day project that costs less than 50 bucks!

Pink Wall in Craft Room by House of MenigPink Wall in Craft Room by House of Menig

Since the floor is super uneven in this room, we’re going to put a little floating table below the window. Eventually.

Pink Wall in Craft Room by House of Menig

Paint really is an amazing way to change out the look and feel of a room entirely. But my biggest lesson with this was: good thing paint is cheap and not permanent. When you make a mistake with paint, it’s just so worth it to change it out, instead of trying to ‘grow to love it’ ๐Ÿ˜‰ Like in this case, a pink wall is much better than a blue one!

Pink Wall in Craft Room by House of MenigPink Wall in Craft Room by House of MenigPink Wall in Craft Room by House of Menig

 

 

 

Remember the story of our DIY credenza we shared a couple weeks back? We had bought the IKEA kitchen cabinets, assembled them, attached them to the wall and installed the doors.

The only thing left was the wooden top.

So we ran to Lowe’s (seriously, it’s our second home!!) and picked up some pretty 1 by 12’s, 12 feet long. These babies don’t come cheap and were around $28 each! We needed two. So roughly 60 bucks. Back home I was rather surprised at how yellow and intense in color they were. Not quite what I was going for in the first place… To give it a shot, I put one of the boards atop the DIY credenza and… Oooooh, how I wished I could have just loved it!

DIY Credenza by House of Menig

Here’s the thing. Our kitchen slash dining room is VERY white. I mean, we love white, but it was getting a little… well, white. That’s why my genius idea was to bring in a little bit more raw wood to warm things up. Unfortunately though, what really happened was it created a verrrry yellow focal point. It screamed ‘Hey there stranger!!! I’m a sideboard and I’m supposed to warm things up in this room!!!’ Not cool! And BTW, in pictures the wooden top actually looks really quite pretty!!! But the reality is, in person it was a completely different (yellow) story…

So, back to the drawing board – aka – playground. Off went the wood to see what the sideboard would look like if left white.

DIY Credenza by House of Menig

Leaving it white was not right either. I LOVE white on white, but this was going too far. (Also, white on white always looks a heck of a lot better in a sea of natural light. In shade? Not so much.)

Then my genius idea hit me. Why not use some leftover drawer liners instead? On went a couple of strips I had laying around. Yes, it worked! The Grey color of the felt liners has variations, so the effect is absolutely beautiful! It creates just the right amount of contrast in a sea of white, yet it doesn’t draw too much attention.

DIY Credenza by House of Menig

So, yesterday I finally went at it and cut the felt liners to the right size and glued them to the top. Yes, you read quite correctly ๐Ÿ˜‰ Hot glue is probably my favorite tool! I used four lines (which ran me around $30) and if I ever change my mind in the future, I can easily dis-assemble the entire thing and use the liners in the shallow drawers that are still liner free.

This felt liner top gives the DIY credenza such a warm look and feel. And boy, it fits perfectly with the marble top in the kitchen!! For such a huge piece of furniture (after all, it’s 120 inches of pure storage!) it has such a low impact on the room overall, which I adore.

DIY Credenza by House of MenigDIY Credenza by House of Menig

The last bits and pieces consist of installing some pretty knobs, cutting a couple of holes into the top to feed the lamp cords directly to the outlets (no cable salad!!!) and lastly, I’m seeing a picture ledge between the lamps.

For the moment though, I’m having fun showcasing some favorite finds & treasures on the sideboard, including my brand spanking new lamps by Tommy Bahama, my favorite square candle holder by House Doctor, a bunch of design magazines (including the Swedish Lantliv) and a twig of forsythia I foraged in our own yard ๐Ÿ™‚

DIY Credenza by House of MenigDIY Credenza by House of MenigDIY Credenza by House of Menig

The three-way lamps give off such a beautiful soft light that covers the entire room in a warm, cozy glow. Honestly, I would have never thought that I’d ever get SO excited about light and lamps and bulbs and wattage and lumens ๐Ÿ˜‰ LOL

DIY Credenza by House of MenigDIY Credenza by House of MenigDIY Credenza by House of MenigDIY Credenza by House of Menig

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New England weather is a crazy affair! One day we were struggling to keep warm (okay, this might be a slight exaggeration) and the next we’re being catapulted into Summer! Just three days ago, the lawn was brown and dead, today there’s a definite shimmer of green all around the village. Leaves are starting to unfold and flowers will be blooming any moment now!

On my quest to make headway for the changing season, I made a DIY Spring wreath, the inexpensive way. It’s such a satisfying project! Taking something and making it even better, prettier, more beautiful. And here’s how you can do it!

DIY Spring Wreath by House of Menig

Supplies you’ll need:

  • inexpensive spring wreath or plain vine wreath
  • faux flowers
  • metal clippers
  • hot glue gun

1 // I found my wreath at our local JoAnn’s store and it was on sale for 14.99 instead of 39.99! Not a bad deal considering that a plain vine wreath with that feathered look costs you 12.99 without any coupons.

DIY Spring Wreath by House of Menig

2 // With wire clippers, start dismantling the wreath. I didn’t like those berry stems as well as the chartreuse color of the green flowers. So off they went. I gotta admit, it feels really really wrong to cut off so much of a perfectly fine wreath! But stick to your gut here and you’ll be so happy you did ๐Ÿ™‚

DIY Spring Wreath by House of Menig

3 // I was left with just a few stems of the pink magnolia, which are so lovely! There were three stems per cluster, which I quickly pulled apart for better coverage on the entire wreath.

DIY Spring Wreath by House of Menig

4 // Next I clipped off the tulip stems and pulled apart the forsythia garland.

DIY Spring Wreath by House of Menig

5 // Now it’s finally time to start hot glueing! Start with one flower and add glue to the stems as you arrange the little clusters of blossoms. Then add the second flower, in my case the yellow forsythia to add that pop of happy. By the way, I specifically chose magnolia, tulips and forsythia, because they are some of the first flowers to bloom in spring. I think that pairing together what grows in nature always looks best as a whole โ™ฅ

DIY Spring Wreath by House of Menig

Yup, and that’s really it!! This project took me just a little over half an hour to accomplish and I’ve already seen numerous people walking by our house this morning, smiling at our front door ๐Ÿ˜€

DIY Spring Wreath by House of MenigDIY Spring Wreath by House of MenigDIY Spring Wreath

I hope you enjoyed this tutorial on how to make your very own DIY Spring Wreath for this season!

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When we looked at this house for the first time, I imagined a slender sideboard on the huge dining room wall. A floating credenza with clean lines and lots of storage space.

The other day we decided to go ahead with the project and I came up with this super easy DIY sideboard idea that would utilize IKEA’s upper wall cabinets! But wait, doesn’t IKEA have a sideboard system in place already? Yes, they do. It’s called BESTA and it’s really quite awesome with plenty of options. They also just released some new doors, which were super tempting, to be honest!

RahelMenigPhotography_1799

But since we had already worked with the kitchen cabinets – and knew how easy they are to assemble – we decided to go with their 20 inch upper wall cabinets, 30 inch wide with two doors each. We went with the cheap HAGGEBY fronts, which is a matte white finish. The four cabinets plus two sets of shelves plus the metal hanging system cost us 286 bucks! That’s not much considering we’re getting 120 inch of storage!

I put together the four cabinets in less than two hours. All you need is a screwdriver/drill and a hammer! Super simple!

Easy DIY Sideboard with IKEA Kitchen Cabinets by House of Menig

Then Adrian found the studs in the wall and attached the metal hanging system. Since we have chair rail, we decided to hang the cabinets just below, so that the wood top would fit snugly with the lower part of the moulding.

Easy DIY Sideboard with IKEA Kitchen Cabinets by House of MenigEasy DIY Sideboard with IKEA Kitchen Cabinets by House of Menig

Onto the railing the cabinets went and Adrian put some screws into the sides to keep them close together. He also carved out some holes to get easy access to the electrical outlets.

Lastly I attached the doors, again, super simple. The cabinets come with the easy to install hinges and less than an hour later the credenza was ready to go!

Easy DIY Sideboard with IKEA Kitchen Cabinets by House of MenigEasy DIY Sideboard with IKEA Kitchen Cabinets by House of Menig

We’re going to add some wood boards to finish up the tops, with little felt spacers I cut out from leftover drawer liners, to create the illusion of a floating top. The two sides will be finished up with some white painted plywood, just like we did in the kitchen.

We’re both so happy with how this easy DIY sideboard turned out so far! The 20 inch cabinets definitely are the perfect height and the ‘float’ really looks, well, ‘floaty’ and super customized!

Easy DIY Sideboard with IKEA Kitchen Cabinets by House of Menig

This story continues…

 

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