Before & After: Catherine's Boarding School Oasis

Before & After: Catherine's Boarding School Oasis

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(Image credit: Submitted by Catherine)

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Name:
Catherine
Location:
Faribault, MN
Division:
U.S. Renter
My room makeover::
My apartment is located on the grounds of a boarding school in Minnesota. That’s right: my home is down the hall from a middle school in a 100+ year old building with about 120 teenage neighbors! It was (and is) so important to me to create a sanctuary from the craziness of boarding school life. The biggest project I have done in this process was redoing the kitchen. It took me about 6 weeks to finish. I deep-cleaned nearly everything with TSP. By myself, I removed and repainted the old cabinets, painted the walls, and replaced the hardware for everything. I used Clark & Kensington Satin finish paint in “Coastal Pleasure” and “Anchors Away,” and Valspar’s “Botanical Bliss” for the cabinets. I later added a discarded dorm desk as a kitchen island, as well as some decoration from IKEA. I still have some empty space to figure out, and likely will add a couple of rugs to the linoleum floors.
My makeover advice::
Don't be afraid to use color! It took me a while to embrace bold paint colors. Don't be afraid to do a project on your own - especially if you're a woman. I used YouTube videos, home websites, and asked for advice at my local hardware store. So far, I've been able to do everything myself! My other advice would be to see the project as a chance to meditate or zone out, and not as a cause of stress. I also like to choose a series on Netflix, or a book on tape, to play as I work. It makes everything go faster, and the repetitive action of painting/working helps you concentrate.
What I love most about my new space::
I love that it is an oasis from the busy world outside my door. The colors of the kitchen make the space look cleaner, even with my cooking materials scattered about. The kitchen "island" increases my cooking space, and has led me to work in the kitchen a bit more. One thing about 120 teenage neighbors - there's always someone willing to eat the excess of baked goods.
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