Leanna Pelham

My super power is Positivity

Category: DIY

Pipe and Wood Shelves

With the living room painting project done, it was time to pick a new project! In our old apartment we had floating cabinets above our TV that filled up the wall. Now in the new house the tv stand seemed like the smallest thing against that big white wall.

I *loved* the shelves (and everything else) that Kristen F. Davis made for her similarly shaped living room. With true DIY newbie fashion, the project Kristen completed in one weekend I managed to stretch over 10 weeks! Let’s say the winter here made it harder to get out to Home Depot some days and very difficult to stain the wood in a safe way.

I took the design she and her dad roughly sketched out for the shelves and recreated it with measurements that would fit our living room.

Here’s the process of ours going up up up:

ONE: Once we had all the measurements just right on paper, we post-it noted the wall with where the iron beams would go and also each shelf, just to make sure it would line up just right.

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TWO: we started building up all the shelves, and carefully leveling them. I didn’t realize how forgiving this design was going to be for 100 year old floors! We were able to loosen and tighten the pipes to get everything flush to the floor.

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THREE: it’s getting tall, so out comes the bright yellow step stool from Ikea that I spray painted last fall.

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FOUR: Vacuum all the sawdust from drilling holes to secure the support flanges to the wall. And eagerly set a few things on the shelf!

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This was a really fun BIG project and I think we totally nailed it. The living room now feels complete, warm and inviting.

To balance out the opposite wall we installed two of the ribba ledge shelves instead of hanging all of our family photos. That part was very little effort for a big effect!

Record Player

My Parents  Santa got me a record player for Christmas! I had mentioned that we had an entire Queen album set and Lazaretto (from record day) but nothing to play them on.

Conveniently it also has cd and cassette players … where did I put that Phil Collins tape?

Here it is:

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It sounds and works great but we already have enough wood finish in our living room. The floors are dark brown, the furniture is dark brown the tv stand and bookshelf are both dark brown. Adding a yellow brown was the last thing we needed.

Spray paint to the rescue! I taped up all the knobs (almost perfectly), the speakers and the little screen and let the Rustoleum do its job. And here is the final result:

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I really like the way the turquoise spray paint turned out. Here is a picture of what I used  (turquoise is called “Seaside”).



Rock on!

Spray Painting Bathroom Mirrors

Our two bathrooms have some rickety old medicine cabinet mirrors which are next on the chopping block!

Here is a picture of what the current cabinet looks like:


This week I decided that flat mirrors without cabinets behind them was going to be the project. I really don’t care for medicine cabinets, they get gross and I’m sure I would never remember to clean them.

To Craigslist I went and found this beauty (I was half way through taping it up when I remembered that I didn’t take a picture yet! (Only $30 for this Italian made mirror)




I got lucky this week and we had a gorgeous sunny day — perfect for spray paint to cure on the back deck! I first applied a nice white base coat as you can see here. But I think it needs another color, of which I haven’t decided yet.


I’ll hang it like this for now until we get to the color decisions of it’s new home in the bathroom.

Storage Closet Revamp!

Our first renovation project! EEEeee — I am just out of my mind excited about this!

The new house is a bit lacking in useful storage space, as you can see there is a ton of wasted space going on in this closet! Ryan hates the doors, but we’ll need to take this one small step at a time.

First up was removing the long poles for hangers. Since this closet is located in the bathroom hanging coats or clothes in there is a bit awkward. So out those go!

You can see I got so excited to get rid of them that I yanked out 2 of the 3 before remembering to take a picture!

Here are our lovely before photos of the closet of my nightmares. I shouldn’t complain because it had a few clean cubbies to put towels in while we brainstormed on what we wanted to do.

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Container Store to our rescue! Now we don’t have one of these within a 4 hour drive of our house but I knew I wanted their help to design a closet that would work for us. So while we were in New York City for work I stopped by and had help from one of their awesome designers. And here is what she came up with:


Ryan ran a marathon in Indianapolis this past weekend so on our way home we picked up all the pieces to this beast and trucked it home proudly.

Then the real work began with cool tools like levels and drills! I’ve been waiting for this day for years! I had already repainted the inside of the closet so that it would be fresh and ready. I also had to spackle and clean up the holes that the former “organization system” (lack there of) left in the walls.

I have to say that doing the self install on the Container Store’s Elfa system was way easier than I ever could have hoped for. They had tons of helpful videos and written instructions that walk you step by step through the process.

And with Ryan and his expert hand helping out we now have a fully armed and operational storage closet!

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And as a fun last little extra (until we redo the doors) I added these little knobs I have been holding onto from Anthropologie.

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