So Many Tassels!

Can’t believe we are already wrapping up Week 4 of the One Room Challenge!

For any new readers, the One Room Challenge is a biannual decor and design event that takes place every spring and fall. This Fall 2018 Challenge marks its fourteenth season! Each Challenge there are 20 designers selected to transform a space, and they document their progress every Wednesday for 6 weeks. In addition, anyone with a blog can take part as a Guest Participant. Each Thursday the guests post links to their progress, inspiring and encouraging others as they participate. And that’s me, a Guest Participant! I’m making over my boys shared bedroom, giving it a touch of whimsey and lots of function.

Hi, I’m Laurel... wife to John, mom of FIVE, interior decorator and real estate stager in Auburn, Maine. Life is a tiny bit chaotic, but I love working with clients and helping transform houses into homes. This is my first One Room Challenge, and it’s been a blast!

This has been a week of tiny little areas of progress, but no one giant thing completed. Although the giant cream colored shag rug I added to their room is just right, so third time’s the charm. (Does this one count as the third rug? The first was just my initial choice on the moodboard, but didn’t make it into the room. I guess you could argue it either way.)

With the shag rug in the room my three year old has been playing in his room more than ever before, building with blocks and cooking up a storm in the play kitchen. The boys actually playing in their room is one of my major goals of this makeover, so I’m pretty happy to see this change.


The lights have bulbs! And a flat head extension cord! The boys love being able to read in bed. We read Bible stories in the lower bunk at bedtime the other night, and everyone got a huge kick out of cuddling up together.


The biggest project to get finished up this week was the birch stump that will serve as a side table next to their reading chair. In May I decorated a wedding reception with, among other things, 10 birch stumps. I brought 6 home afterward (so heavy!!), and they have been drying out in my garage ever since.


This weekend I selected one for the boys room, and set it on a stool outside to peel the bark. I hacked at it in a fairly unsafe way with my husband’s multi-tool knife until I got the many layers of bark off. I almost-not-quite got a blister, so it’s going to be a while before I peel another stump.

The next step was sanding, and I first used 80 grit, then 150, then 220 to finish it up. I used a 5-inch radius palm sander, and completed sanding in less than an hour. All told it was about a 3 hour project. I’m not going to seal it at this point, because there is a further layer that I’ll remove when it dries out even more (probably a spring project). Then I’ll oil or poly it… if you’ve ever peeled a stump please comment and let me know how you sealed it!


Tassels. So many tassels. So many, in fact, that it’s the title for this blog post, despite the fact that I have yet to take a picture of said tassels. I am going to trim the sides of the existing blackout curtains with tassels, and am making three different green colors with crochet thread. It’s going to be very fun. And now you know what I’ll be working on tonight when I finish this blog post.


The KALLAX unit has seen steady progress, though I’m STILL not done with it. But I’ve applied multiple layers of poly to the wood and I should be ready to “built” it this weekend. I love how the color came out, and can’t wait to show you all! Crossing fingers for a successful IKEA hack…


I took a trek to a second Target to pick up the second comforter, and my youngest is thrilled with his cozy blanket. The oldest commandeered the first one immediately upon purchase, so the little guy had been waiting for a couple weeks.


I’ve been vacillating about my art plans for the room, but am pretty sure I have it nailed down now. It is all very personal and significant to the boys, and I’m looking forward to getting it on the walls in the next week or so. The boys will be so excited about a couple surprises I have planned!

I realized today that I hadn’t taken any pictures with the bed curtains closed, and it’s one of my favorite details of the whole room. Check it out!


On to Week 5, time to really rock and roll!! Be sure to follow me on Instagram to keep up on One Room Challenge updates, and check out the featured designers and my fellow guests at the link below!