The Quick Fix

The Quick Fix

9th May 2019

Hey ya’ll! Tune in right here to see all things home, health and happiness. Each week we plan to share something DIY home, something related to health or ways to create happiness in your home. So our first project is our dining room makeover. This is something you can do too. Want an easier hack than repainting layers of primer and paint to cover up a really dark color? Have lots of woodwork that you don’t want to paint, but feel like your room is weighed down and feels dark? We understand!! Follow along here for our quick tips to inexpensively update your space.

Anyone ever feel like there isn’t enough time in a day to just do life, much less redoing a room? Don’t panic. This can be done in one day. We moved into our farmhouse late October 2018. Because life comes before buffalo check, we didn’t start any updating until three weeks ago.


The colors throughout the house are actually time-period to the style of the house, but the primitive colors were much too dark for our taste. We have officially begun the process of lightening everything up. Our go-to paint color is Gracious Griege by Sherwin Williams. Good news is it plays nice with EVERYTHING. But, the down side was we knew it was going to take several coats to cover up the dark wine color on the wall in the dining room. And...I really wanted to wallpaper buffalo check because we all know, it’s so darn cute.

There’s a ton of woodwork in the house. If we had our way about it, it would be white, but a lot of it was milled from the trees on the property and we don’t dare cover that up. That further justified going the wallpaper route because who wants to trim paint around all of that? Full disclosure; the wallpaper and paint were going to cost about the same amount by the time we put three coats on the wall, so think about it, you can go right over the dark color with light wallpaper and have instant gratification without the headache of painting inside the lines.

The dining room has wood paneling 2/3 the way up the wall, so the paper was only going to cover 1/3 of the area. This was great on the cost front, but it also allowed us to do a bigger print and it wouldn’t look too busy. We opted for a buffalo check that from a distance looked lighter and up close it looks like pencil lines. This is a more modern interpretation of the check pattern that we think will outlast the trend. 

We also focused on an accent chandelier pulling the black and white accents in. The wallpaper helped cancel out so much wood in the space; wood panel, wood built-ins, wood floor because the paint color was as dark as the wood. So, if you are struggling with too much wood, maybe trying going lighter with your paint color (cool grays look great with wood) or wallpapering. The other thing we did to break up the wood in the space was finding a large pattern vinyl rug that extends outside the dining table. It helps anchor the space, break up the wood and plays nice with the wallpaper (by mixing patterns) because the wallpaper isn’t too dense. If the wallpaper were more solid black and white, this rug would have never worked.

To finish off the space, we accessorized with found objects and furniture, modern takes on farm-themed objects and grandma’s jelly cabinet.

It really is okay to mix wood colors in a room. We added grandma’s jelly cabinet and repurposed it to store our milk glass dishes instead of jelly. The color of the cabinet is almost black. In the space, despite the dark wood color it actually is, it appears black with the other black accessories in the room and natural wood everywhere else. We also have a mini sideboard we threw in there in chippy white . Coupled with the salvaged dining room table, we put modern metal chairs and upholstered chairs at the head of the table. 

Function is important to us and it should be in your space too. We can take the canvas covers off the chairs and throw them in the wash. The vinyl rug can be mopped and our metal chairs can be wiped down.

Greenery is like a cherry on the top of a sundae. We threw two boxwood wreaths on the built-ins just to add some symmetry and color. A couple of mini wreaths are centered in our tobacco baskets (rectangular baskets, not square, because we are so not square people). Real touch tulips line the center of the dining room table in a ball jar holder. Simple. Livable. Light.

Need some help getting started? Check out our house calls.