Tuesday, August 9, 2016

A Big Makeover for My Blue Haven

If you've been reading this blog a while, you may know that "My Blue Haven" is my affectionate name for my bedroom, which I'm trying to make into a  restful and inspiring place to sleep, think, talk, read, write, and create. It is mainly decorated in robin's egg, aqua, turquoise, and teal shades of blue.

This summer, My Blue Haven got a big makeover! I didn't replace the carpet or repaint, but I do have several ideas here for making a bedroom practical and pretty while being creative and resourceful.

It started with a bed bug invasion in a child's room, which soon spread to the rest of the house, including my very own bed. Itchy itchy bites! We called an exterminator who came out four times to spray. We also decluttered most of the rooms and washed loads upon loads of laundry in hot water. I think all the bugs are gone now.

In the process, I realized that the old queen size bed was probably harboring lots of bugs in the wooden grid below the platform frame. The frame was over 30 years old, clunky, and too long for a standard queen mattress since it used to be a water bed frame. The 20 year old mattress was completely shot with lumps and holes galore. I disassembled the whole thing and had my teen sons drag it outside the house for the trash folks to haul away. I had to sand and spackle the wall where the frame had badly gouged it. I still need to touch up the paint, but it's good enough for now.

Then I bought a universal bed frame at Sam's Club for less than $40, a beautiful Ethan Allen headboard at a thrift store for $60, and a queen size pillow top mattress and box springs set on clearance at a furniture store for about $250. I quickly put it all together in a new spot in the room. 

Then I decided I needed new bedding for it. I found a gorgeous teal blue quilt with matching pillow cases at Ross for less than $50. I chose king size instead of queen size because I wanted it to drape down the sides and cover the box springs so I could avoid buying a dust ruffle. As it turns out, I turned it sideways, and it covers the foot end of the bed, too. Yay!

I did have one problem with the bed. Since I sit on the edge of it so frequently (and my kids plop on it), it seemed like the top layer was getting squished down and tilted to the side. When I climbed in at night, I felt like I was about to roll out of bed just a little bit. I tried rotating the mattress, and I checked the bed frame to make sure it was level, but none of that helped. After a few weeks, I added two layers of 1" thick 10" wide foam sheets under the mattress along the edge where I get out of bed. After I took this photo, I tucked them in under the fitted sheets.

I also bought a really soft fluffy blanket for underneath the quilt. There are two standard size pillows under the quilt for sleeping, and the big king size one with the teal pillow case goes on top as decoration after I make the bed.

The place where I put the bed this time has wall space above it. I looked for coordinating artwork in a bunch of stores and couldn't find what I wanted, so I decided to paint my own. It's inspired by cathedral rose windows and you can read more about its creation here: Sanctuary: The Story of My New Blue Painting.


You may remember that I bought this blue IKEA cart for our school room, but then decided to use it by my desk in the bedroom. Well, now it's my bedside "table" since what I had before won't fit in this spot. I love that it has multiple levels to store my lamp and medicines and tissues (top bin), CPAP machine (middle bin), and miscellaneous supplies (bottom bin).

I was diagnosed with diabetes this past spring and take metformin orally twice a day. Though my doctor didn't tell me I needed to test my blood sugars yet, I decided last week to get a glucose monitor anyway and keep track of the levels occasionally. I bought an opaque blue mason jar with a straw hole in the lid. I drop my used lancets and test strips into it so I can dispose of them hygienically later on rather than dumping them in the regular trash with blood on them. I store the jar on my bedside cart, where I also keep my glucose monitor.

I took down the net layer of my curtains, and left up just the muslin under layer. It has a more subtle look.

I found the light blue and white basket at a yard sale for $1. It sits on the file cabinet next to my desk along with my magnifying mirror and my tweezer jar. (When I moved the cart, I replaced it with a file cabinet from the closet. The cabinet now holds my tools and sewing kit. I put a decorative blue medallion dish towel on top.)

I found these closet organizers on clearance at Ross for about $5 each.

After our bed bug crisis, I took my four younger kids on a 15 day road trip to visit family in Maryland and New Jersey.

I brought home a whole box more of my late mother's pretty things. The newest additions to my bookshelf on my desk are the little vase and jar that are near the left side of this picture.

The calming glitter jar sits on my desk. I made it last week, and I love to turn it over and see the colored glitter swirl around. You can read more about that here: Calming Glitter Jar

While on our trip, I bought a lovely blue sun hat at the Jersey shore. It is now perched on the top shelf of my desk.

I rearranged this bookcase with other treasures!

On top, I put a sign that I bought for half price at Cracker Barrel on our way home from Maryland.

The stained glass piece on the right was made by my mother.

This platter that I painted used to sit on my bedside table, but there's no room for it on my cart, so I moved it to the shelf. The crystal pieces were my mother's. I brought them home with me when we were visiting my dad.

I bought the tea cup on the right at an antique store at Savage Mill in Maryland.

I already had a hymnal collection, but found a few more, along with a Book of Common Prayer, in a box in the basement in Maryland. I brought them home.

This one belonged to my great-grandmother Olive (Mrs. C.B.) Ransom.

And finally, I bought new pull thingies for my ceiling fan and light at Cracker Barrel on clearance. I love the encouragement that I see every time I turn them on or off!

You can read the other Blue Haven posts here!