Hello! I'm Suzannah, a serious DIYer and mom of two little ones. Follow along with my DIY fixer upper house renovations, sewing and crafty projects, real food recipes, and de-stressing goals.
I believe you can love your home just the way it is, AND have the power to design and make big changes to make it better.
I'm also the author of DIY Wardrobe Makeovers!


How to recover a curved, nailhead headboard - tutorial!

I wanted a really unique, cool headboard for my One Room Challenge guest room but I wasn't prepared for a full-on from-scratch plywood etc. DIY headboard. I found a curved headboard with nailhead trim (not my favorite) for $10 on Facebook Marketplace and recovered it with a beautiful fabric, and found a great solution for covering up the nailhead trim. I didn't even have to remove it! Easy tutorial here!

DIY recovered curved headboard tutorial

You will need:

  • Headboard
  • Fabric (plan to run the fabric vertically, so enough for the width and height of the headboard plus 6"+ on each side--I had to use two widths of my 53" wide fabric for my full/queen headboard)
  • Optional/if your headboard is dark and your fabric is light: white spray paint
  • Spray adhesive
  • Staple gun and staples
  • High heat hot glue gun and glue
  • Piping cord (or, I used macrame cord since I liked the size better)
  • Zipper foot
    • Or, for simpler/no sewing, contrast trim!
  • Standard sewing tools


1. Measure out and dry fit the fabric. I had to piece mine so I chose how I wanted to center the pattern on the headboard.

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2023 house project goals

As I mentioned in my 2022 house project recap post, this house is in a good spot and I've learned I need to focus more on myself in 2023. So I have some goals for myself (take 3 fun vacations with friends, get my tattoos removed, learn to make cocktails), and the house stuff will have to fit into the happier lifestyle I'm trying to create for myself. 

Part of that means hiring out some projects when I'm able. Partly that will also mean making small changes when they feel fun, like adding pieces that represent the style I've been working on identifying this past year. 

Fixer upper renovation project goals for 2023


I had this on my list last year but talked myself out of it... I want to paint the brick. I've gone back and forth a lot on this one and it's a harder choice since this is a somewhat historic house (1937), but... the bricks and mortar are not in good shape and cleaning them has not been successful. I need to tuck point/re-mortar in places and then I'd like to have all of the brick painted the same color as the siding. I think it will really clean up the look of the front and give the house a less shabby feel overall.

In the backyard, I hope to get it cleaned up (ended up storing a lot of garden stuff for various reasons) and hopefully remove the garden area, just make it lawn.

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2022 home project recap

I majorly paused home projects and blogging and Instagramming in 2022 due to an unexpected divorce (hard) and finally learning to take care of myself and choose fun and rest over needless productivity (good). We moved into this house in July of 2018 and have been working on it since, with not a lot of breaks. It's currently very comfortable and adequate, with a few unfinished or under-improved areas, but I am so grateful for it as it is, a wonderful home for me and my children.

I did get several fun projects done this year (somehow), though. Here they are.

2022 Tudor revival home projects

Here's my list of house project goals for 2022. I definitely did not do all of those... but I did a good job of picking the highest priority/most important to me ones.


The biggest deal thing on the exterior this year was replacing the front window. Read about that here. Very expensive, long lead time, kind of sad on an old house, but very much needed! So glad I did that.
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Moody English-inspired basement guest bedroom REVEAL! + costs and sources

Hooray, my One Room Challenge is done! I 100% did not have time or capacity to do this project (hence the lack of blog posts long the way, unlike how I've done my previous ORCs) but I have to say it turned out great and I'm so glad I did it!!

Moody English-inspired basement guest bedroom

This room is part of my big basement renovation which unfortunately is still not 100% done--though now this room is, as is the bathroom right next to it (my spring One Room Challenge--reveal here). Most of the work in this room was done earlier this year, and a lot of it by the electrician, drywall team, etc. who did the rest of the basement, but still--huge transformation! 

See the before/inspiration post in Week 1 of the ORC here

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Historic home statement front window replacement

One super prominent feature of this home is its long living room with (approx.) 7'x7' window at the front. It lets in tons of sun in the morning (it faces east) and a good amount of light most of the time. It's a great!! But it had a lot of issues. Almost all the windows on my 1937 home are original wood windows, including some leaded glass ones. They are very cool and help the house keep its original character. But this window was failing in several ways. 

When we first bought the house this window was on the long list of overwhelming expensive projects/updates, and it fell to near the bottom of the list. But now with two kids and using the space in front of the window for their playmat and climber, and with a lot of other projects crossed off, it felt like it really needed to happen. 

Take a look... leaded glass panes including four fins in the middle, which were no longer welded together. At the top someone had tried to secure them with wood and screws, but the glass literally moved when you pushed on it slightly, and rattled in strong wind. There was also a lot of water damage on the sill and floor below. (And cat hair--but hard to dust with the varnish worn off from water damage!)

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English-inspired guest room makeover, week 1 One Room Challenge!

I need a kick in the pants to wrap up this big basement renovation project, so here goes--my 117th (kidding) One Room Challenge. (See all my others here.) We started turning this little extra room into a guest room months ago and stopped, and... now it's just sad. But I have plans for a beautiful, richly colored, vintage-ey English country-inspired room and here I go!

Basement guest room One Room Challenge makeover

The before(s)

This room has been through a lot. Here's its recent history, from 70's/80's home office to newly framed tiny bonus room. There's no closet since it wasn't intended to be a bedroom (hence why we didn't add an egress window), and it's really very small. A full size bed is as big as you'd want to go! I was thinking it would be a nice office, too, or music room or small playroom... but then we decided we wanted it to be a guest room, and I love decorating bedrooms so that was the most fun option anyway. 
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Thrifted and vintage gallery wall living room update

We have a long, skinny living room and the wall opposite the front door/entry has always stumped me. We tried the TV there, tried a wall of bookcases (looked so cluttered)... no good solution. Until recently, when I got some new toy storage cabinets. They were really low and needed a big statement something above them, but I'm a little tired of really big art pieces and wanted something cozier. 

So I gathered a few pieces of art I already had and started buying coordinating frames at Goodwills. I started with the largest piece and just built outward from there. 

I "framed" out the gallery wall even before I had all the art pieces, and had empty frames hanging for a couple months! Even that felt better than the heavy wall of bookcases (we put them in the basement media room now that the basement is almost done).

Then, I had four empty frames I needed to fill and I shopped around some of my favorite sources for original art downloads (I highly recommend the Public Domain Print Shop from A Home Is Announced). I picked out some landscapes and some sketches that worked well with each other and the other art pieces. I printed them at Office Depot on 110 lb paper for about $1 each. Frames at the Goodwills in my area are usually $2-5 each. I would guess the total cost of this wall was about $40! 

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Living room update: new custom ottoman, coffee table solution!

I said back at the beginning of the year that a goal for my home was figuring out the living room. I knew it would probably take all year! I've been updating the curtains, creating attractive toy/book storage, moving things around... and the custom ottoman I ordered a while back is here and so wonderful!

This post is sponsored by Wayfair.

Coffee table replacement: upholstered ottoman

I've debated a lot about coffee tables in here and tried a couple out. I love the function and style-ability of a coffee table, but with little kids, we had to just keep it bare all the time and it was sort of a hazard for rough play. There is also already a lot of wood in this room due to the original wood trim. Plus, I like to put my feet up on the coffee table while watching TV and I was always putting a pillow under my heels for padding, ha.

So a while back I decided I wanted something traditional, comfortable, and unique. I found this upholstered ottoman on Wayfair that comes in a ton of beautiful patterns and has charming ball feet. It was perfect! I was able to choose the color of the feet, too. Ah, I love some of those stripes it comes in so much... it was a hard decision! I recommend ordering swatches!

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Old house small closet update!

I did a closet project last year--I repaired the walls and reconfigured things in a medium-sized somewhat funky hall closet that I used as mine. That worked great but it was down the hall from our room... we recently switched things around and now I get the closet and dresser in the bedroom. It was built similarly and apparently 1937 closets often need some of the same updates. I recently made this closet way more functional, too! 

This was a simple project that I mostly did right after the kids went to bed over a few days. Check it out!

Old house closet update

Here's my clothing storage corner of the room. Dresser (we bought two of these when we did this bedroom update years ago), jewelry storage, and a long but pretty narrow closet. 

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