I’ve been hard at work on the small bedroom. Here’s what I’ve done so far:

  • Repaired damaged window glazing
  • Repaired damaged window sash
  • caulked an ugly gap around the attic hatch
  • Painted most of the trim – Benjamin Moore Super White
  • Painted the ceiling – I just mixed my three white samples together and it was enough paint for the ceiling
  • Painted the walls – Benjamin Moore Simply White
  • Built wall-to-wall shelves above the bed

What still needs to be done:

  • Caulk, prime, and paint the new shelves
  • Prepare and paint the floor
  • Paint the upper window sash and touch up the trim in a few areas
  • Decorate!

Originally, I thought I would just clean and paint and otherwise leave the room as is, but now I want to totally redecorate. Since the room is so small and has no particularly nice features, I’m going with austere and simple.  Think Anne of Green Gables, or a convent. Just a bed, small chest of drawers, perhaps a wooden chair. Braided rug on the painted floor, minimal window treatments, and a patchwork quilt on the bed (which I’m going to make myself). I’ve also decided to buy a new bed. The nook is technically just large enough for a full size bed, but the baseboards eat up so much floor space, even the smallest full size frame is too big. I’m hoping to find a good antique 3/4 size bed, which is wider than a twin bed, but a few inches narrower than a standard full size. Since the room has no closet, I’m considering  Shaker peg boards around the perimeter of the room. I think it will be sweet when it’s done, but it’s turning into a bigger project than I had intended at first. Other than the original twin bed, there’s no furniture to speak of. I’m going to donate the bed once I find a suitable antique.

And now some photos!

Attic Hatch before


Attic Hatch after caulking the gap and painting


First coat of paint on the walls


Walls are painted; getting started on the shelves

Regarding the shelves – this was my first real foray into woodworking. I did build shelves for my kitchen but the framework was plumbing pipe, so there was very little woodworking involved. (See post about it on my old blog. Also this post.) For these shelves, I googled “shelves above bed,” looking for inspiration and also came up with a plan for construction. I didn’t want to use brackets and saw some images I liked in which the shelves are supported by narrow strips of wood on three sides. The space between the walls is about 58 inches. I went to Lowe’s on Saturday night and made an utter fool of myself, walking around the store with a 10 foot poplar board and my other supplies. A kind man helped me carry it to my car, where, after I put the seats down and wedged one end very tightly under the windshield, it just fit. (I drive one of those silly looking Scion wagons. They are much roomier inside than they look.) The chief difficulty with the construction was holding the supporting strip of wood, level and tightly against the wall with one arm, while hefting our 8.5 pound drill one-handed and drilling into the wall. My wrists are sore and I had a few near misses with almost drilling holes through the bed frame (I was standing on the bed) and my leg. I also had some difficulty cutting the shelf boards to the correct length. The skill saw is too heavy for me, so I used a small hand saw. My first attempt was a tiny bit too wide, so I had to carefully saw off 1/4 inch, and then another 1/4 inch. I am very pleased with the result.

I built the shelves over the weekend when Jon was away at a conference. It wasn’t easy.


Completed shelves. They will look sweet when they are painted and styled.


A reminder of what the room looked like before I started.