Top DIY Projects of 2012 Party!

I look forward to this party every year and I think this is at least 4 years I’ve been doing it!

Fast forward one year and wow, do I have some projects to share this year!  It was a whirlwind year of renovating my 1979 fixer upper and my dad and I did a LOT of work to finish up this house so I could move in on October 18th.  I’ve been in here a little over 2 months now and it is feeling so much like home to me.  I absolutely LOVE it!  Really, truly love it.

I re-read my post from last year’s party (which by the way, had over 400 link ups) and I was so anticipating getting a fixer upper house this year and I’m so thrilled that it happened, just as I had hoped and dreamed about!  God sure has a way of giving us what we need, doesn’t he?

So, let’s look back at the year in review, at my house and the highlights of projects that went into making this old house a home for me.  It was a daunting task as I’m sure many of you felt when I showed this house off for the first time in March.  I’m sure some of you were wondering what in the world I was getting myself into and honestly, I am sure I felt the same way at times.  But, with lots of hard work, blood, sweat and a few tears, the house came together and I’m so grateful it did. I shared every single week of the house renovation here on the blog and y’all were so great to cheer me on!

If  you’re new to my blog, I have a House Renovation category and you can see every post that I did on this house project and you can always click the house pic on my sidebar to get there too.

To be in my own house this Christmas has been such a joyful time.  You truly do appreciate something more when hard work is involved to get it.  I don’t take any of this for granted, but I am truly grateful that I was able to get in a house again and I couldn’t be more content to call this house my home.

On March 30 of this year, I announced on my blog that I had found my house!  The deal was done, we closed on April 12th and we were about to start a renovation journey, my dad and I.  It was lot to tackle, that is for sure, but we did it!

The humble beginnings!  I still haven’t done a thing to the outside yet, but I’ve got some big plans for landscaping, a new front porch too and working on the fireplace outside.  2013 will bring many more fun projects on the house and one of the first will be the screened porch in the back. I’m itching to get that space all nice and pretty!

But for now, I’ll show off the inside.  We really transformed the whole inside of the house this year and I could not be happier with it all.

We did so many projects along the way on this house, but I’m going to highlight the big ones.  One of the first things I did in the dining room to add some character was add board and batten.

With my electric nail gun and my dad’s expertise, we got this job done pretty fast and that really added some much needed architectural details to this plain Jane dining room.

And here’s the real After shot with new hardwoods installed and everything painted.  You can find all my paint colors in this post And the board and batten tutorial is here.

And here it is with furniture.  What a difference, yes?!

One of the other major projects we tackled was installing new pine stair treads as well as new risers.  That was a big job, but I’m so happy with how it came out.

And you can find all the details on how we did it here.

Since I opted to keep the existing bathrooms as they were, I spruced them up by painting the vanities and this guest bath also got a Rustoleum treatment on the countertop.  It went from dated 70’s laminate….

To at least an updated black glossy look by using Rustoleum’s Countertop transformations kit.  Love how it updated this bathroom!  I’ll be doing a complete post on this bathroom soon to see all the fun updates in there.

So, the kitchen was without a doubt the most transformed space in the entire house and the one that I’m most proud of.  It began like this, nasty ugly dated 1970’s pine cabinets.  Now, I know they look sort of charming in these pics, but believe me they were roach infested and nasty when we tore them off the walls.

The base cabinets were in really bad shape and we just couldn’t save them, although I did save some of the uppers to reuse later.  After a lot of work and installing new hardwoods and all new kitchen cabinets from Ikea, the kitchen is now the kitchen of my dreams.

I hired an installer to install the cabinets, but my dad and I did the rest of the finish work, including the subway tile backsplash and all the window trim work.

It’s a gorgeous kitchen now and I am completely in love with it.   You can read all about why I chose an Ikea kitchen.

It has everything I need and want and is a dream to cook in.  I posted all the details about the granite and you can see all the Before and After shots in this post.

My bedroom got an updated feature wall with a paint treatment I did and it went from plain to a lot more jazzy.

This Gingham paint treatment that I saw in a Southern Living idea house was done with Frogtape and I love how it came out.

I managed to do a little furniture painting this year as well and this $45 thriftstore Ethan Allen piece got spruced up with some Annie Sloan chalk paint in Provence.

And now looks 100% better in my new den.  You can see all the details on this post.

My really gross and ugly laundry room got a new lease on life with painted walls, wood trim, and a cool striped paint treatment on the concrete floor.

And now it’s so much more tolerable, I can definitely stand to do laundry in here now.  You can see all the how-to’s here.

Before we started on MY house renovation, I also did a fun update in my parent’s bathroom back at the beginning of the year.

This was the tired and dated 1970’s bathroom before.

And here is the fresh and updated After!  You can see the whole renovation on this post, with all the details.

My parents bedroom got a much needed update as well and it’s all on this post.

My sister and I did another stencil treatment in her basement craft room, this diamond damask beauty.

It was definitely a year of projects, getting this house move-in ready, but it quite possibly is the most rewarding time I’ve ever had.  It was worth every bit of sweat equity to now be living in my own little jewel box of a house and you can color me content.

I’ve been up to one more project during the holidays, but it might take me a few weeks to finish this one.

Two  panels down, 4  to go out of 6 Ikea Ritva panels I’m stenciling in this pretty Ikat stencil by Cutting Edge stencils.  These will go in my bedroom.

It’s a deep blue on cream panels and will make a pretty addition to my room, I think!  I hung one up just to take a peek at it and I’m really loving it so far.  It might be awhile before you see the finish on this one though.  It’s time consuming, but very cost effective and I’ll have $75 in this project for the panels (for 3 windows) and $6 for the paint.  I’ll share a whole tutorial on this when I’m done!

So, now it’s YOUR turn to link up!  I know there have been some fabulous projects in blogland this year and I can’t wait to see yours too.  Link up here and share your posts!

PLEASE don’t link up all your individual projects!  I’m going to limit it to 2 links per person, at the most.  And a recap post is so much better for this party!

I’ll be back right after New Years, so enjoy this party for a few days of inspiration!

And I’ve announced the winner of the MirrorMate frame HERE!  Thanks to all of you for signing up!

- Rhoda


  1. Wow Rhoda, you have had a busy year! I especially love your board and batten dining room. You should be thrilled with all you have accomplished. I can’t wait to see what you do next year. Thanks for sharing. Happy New Year. All my love, Julie x

  2. A standing ovation in Phoenix! You really have done so very much this past year. Well done!

    Can’t wait to see what 2013 holds for you.

  3. Loved seeing all these projects evolve and look forward to many more!

    Happy New Year, Rhoda!

  4. Hi Rhoda,
    I can’t believe how much you got done this year. Amazing. I need to get some painting and organizing done in mine this year. Very motivating seeing the before and afters. All the best for 2013 in you new home.

  5. Thank you for hosting, Rhoda. I hope you had a wonderful and very special Christmas in your new home. Happy New Year too!

  6. Rhoda,
    You and your lovely parents should open an Etsy Shop and sell bottles of your seemingly never ending ENERGY! 🙂
    You did an amazing job transforming a house into your home sweet home.
    I look forward to reading all that 2013 brings you.
    Your Friend,

  7. I am so excited for you Rhoda! It has been so much fun to see your journey this past year & all you have accomplished in your new home. Thank you for sharing your projects, your family & your heart with us. All my best for the up coming year!

  8. I loved seeing the transformation you and your parents did to your new house this year, it was HUGE and well done! I can’t wait to see what you do this coming year!

  9. Rhoda – you deserve everything great thing that’s happened this year! Your house looks amazing and I know you’ll be sharing even more fabulous projects for years to come!
    Love those stenciled curtains!

  10. Thanks for hosting Rhoda! What a great way to end the year. I loved being able to see all your home transformations in one post… it was a very busy and productive year for you. Happy New Year!

  11. Rhoda,
    The transformation on your home is outstanding! It has been so inspiring to share your journey this year. I so admire your spirit. I wish you many more blessings in the new year!

  12. Rhonda, you’ve had such an incredible year! Such awesome projects. Thanks so much for hosting and Happy New Year!

  13. So glad I found your wonderful blog….Love your kitchen and the tile! This is a wonderful Party! Looking forward to all of your inspiration for 2013!

  14. Rhoda,

    What a fun party! Thank you so much for hosting and sharing all your projects! It has been an amazing year for you and your wonderful house!

    Have a blessed and incredible New Year!


  15. Rhoda I loved following you along on your journey this year! You turned your new home into a beauty!! My favorite is your remolded kitchen, love love!!
    Thanks so much for hosting!

  16. It was great to watch you and your family transform your house into the beautiful home that it is! Thanks for hosting. Happy New Year, Rhoda!

  17. Oh my goodness, you have been one busy girl! I love all the changes and how did I miss that gingham wall~love it! I hope you have a wonderful 2013! I can’t wait to see what you do next 🙂 Thanks for hosting.

  18. Hi Rhoda, I have absolutely LOVED all of your new home’s transformation. Absolutely incredible, every single room. It’s just amazing to see what hard work can get you. Thank you for hosting the party, I always look forward to seeing what bloggers have been up to this past year. Wishing you and your family a happy and creative new year.

  19. Dear Rhoda,

    You accomplished so much, it’s amazing! And your house is truly beautiful.

    I wish I had bigger DIY projects to share, but we are not set up for them in our current house. But I can’t wait to show off our new house once we finally move!

    Wishing you an amazing, healthy, and peaceful 2013!

  20. You’ve come so far this year! My favorite project so far has been your kitchen remodel. I love the subway tile! And I can’t wait to see the reveal of your stenciled curtains.

  21. This is my favorite party each year! Thanks so much Rhoda! I love all of your projects from this year, you’ve been busy!

  22. Just one word…AH-MAZE-ING!! You rock Rhoda, and I’m so happy your dream came true! Here’s to a wonderful 2013 in your new home.

  23. Wow, Rhoda you have been one busy woman this past year! 🙂 Your projects look wonderful. Great job, my friend! 🙂 You deserve it! 🙂

    Thanks so much for hosting the party!

  24. You’ve had a super productive year, Rhoda and have done an amazing job! Love every DIY and decorating change to your new home. Looking forward to your 2013 projects!

  25. Hi Rhoda, You win the award for the most projects in 2012. I have loved watching the transformation of your home and seeing the beautiful results. Thanks for hosting. Happy New Year! xx, Sherry

  26. You should be very proud of yourself Rhoda…you have accomplished so much. A lesser woman would have taken the easy way out. You bought that home, on your own, and made it your own. Well done. Happy New Year!

  27. Hello, I am so happy for all you’ve accomplished! Your dad (whole family) seems pretty awesome. You are one fortunate girl! Hope you have a wonderful New Year!

    I am working from my iPhone in the car. I was excited to link up several projects THEN I went back and enlarged your post and saw I was suppose to link up only two. I’m one over. So sorry!


  29. I absolutely love your re-dos! The kitchen is so my fav with the white tile.

  30. I still can’t get over how much you accomplished this year! You have such a beautiful home and are such an inspiration! Thanks for hosting and best wishes for a Happy New Year!
    Cheers! – Shelley

  31. Rhoda, I don’t think anyone can compare with you for DIY projects for 2012! It’s amazing to think where you started and where you’re ending the year. I’m so proud and happy for you. And to think that you headed up the Haven Conference right in the middle of all that remodeling–can you believe what a year it’s been for you?!? Three cheers for Rhoda!

  32. Thanks so much for hosting! Love the recaps of the year!!

  33. Thanks for hosting a very inspirational party! Your home is so beautiful – I am sure you are so proud of all the transformations you have accomplished so far; it’s easy to see all the love you and your family poured into your new home and I am sure you will make lots of wonderful, beautiful memories here in 2013! Congrats on your move in and have fun feathering your nest! (Love your stencilled drapes!) Heather

  34. I’ve really enjoyed watching the amazing transformation of your new home. Your hard work is evident in every picture and each room is lovely. Wishing you a very happy new year!

  35. What a transformation I am in awe at all that you did!Looks beautiful!Thank you for the inspiration and for hosting too!
    Best wishes in the coming year!

  36. Rhoda~look at all you’ve done! Wow. Love, love your kitchen especially. Here’s to even better things in 2013! xo

  37. my goodness! I missed some of these posts. all O can say is awesome! you did a fabulous job! lovely choice of finishes and colors. Happy New Year!

  38. Hi Rhoda- I have enjoyed seeing your dream come together this year. Happy New Year!

  39. Not only did you find your dream home, but you did SO MUCH this past year to improve it and make it truly your own! Not sure even which is my fave, as there are quite a few! Thanks for hosting this end-of-the-year party — I love seeing everyone’s top posts all in one creative spot!

  40. Wow, you certainly have accomplished a lot, you home is so gorgeous!

  41. Thank you so much for hosting Rhoda!! Hope you have a lovely weekend!!

  42. What you have accomplished this year is amazing, Rhoda! Congratulations on your new home!…hugs…Debbie

  43. I LOVE looking at your amazing progress. What a year you have had. What fun to look back on it. And all that work has paid off in spades.

    I have enjoyed watching your progress and can’t wait to see what else you do!

    🙂 Erin

  44. Congratulations on all of your accomplishments! Love the way the house looks! Hope to see you soon at Haven! Happy New Year!

  45. Thank you so much for hosting the party, Rhoda. You have certainly done a ton of projects in your new home, and with such lovely results! Happy New Year to you!

  46. You conquered an amazing amount of projects in 2012. The board and batten in the dining room is my favorite. Looking forward to seeing your blog posts in 2013. Thanks for hosting the party.

  47. This is a labor of love this post. Wow you put all your projects on one. Love it. Great creative work.
    Thank you Rhoda for including me in your year of posts. Loved it.
    Happy New Year.

  48. Oh Rhoda! I can not believe how much you’ve accomplished this year! Through in Haven to top it off too? You are a machine! The home is looking so gorgeous and I’m enjoying watching the transformation. Happy New Year my friend!

  49. Hi Rhoda, your home looks amazing!! I especially love your dining room, and the stairs are fantastic!! I linked up my guest room, because I haven’t written my best of 2012 post yet. I guess I’m a little behind.

  50. Hi Rhoda!
    You were one of the very first bloggers I followed back when I began blogging almost 1 year ago. I am still absolutely in awe of your talent and perseverance! I love everything you’ve done to your beautiful home, and have LOVED following along as the reno progresses! Thanks so much for hosting! I hope 2013 brings you so many new blessings!! ~ Virginia

  51. Rhoda–great party!

    It was fun to look back at all you’ve accomplished over the last year! You’ve made your house into a lovely, cozy home!

  52. Those curtains look amazing so far! You do good work. 🙂 Thanks so much for hosting–and Happy New Year!

  53. Thank you for doing this. It is a great way to see many wonderful ideas all at once! I am a big fan of your blog, by the way!

  54. You’ve done an amazing job on your home. The rooms are coming together beautifully. Congratulations on your beautiful place.

  55. Thanks for hosting, Rhoda! I wish I’d known your party was already up, but I didn’t do a “best of” post until Monday anyways. You were so busy in 2012…your home looks fantastic! Happy New Year. 🙂

  56. Hi Rhoda- I am a frequent visitor and just read your story. Wow! Thank you for sharing. I smell a book deal on the horizon! xo, laura

  57. I just realized that the link back to your blog for my submission (#49) was broken. I’ve fixed it!


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