Welcome to Salt & Rook, a blog about our DIY home renovation and style | Syracuse, New York

Work In Progress Wednesday: Living Room and Life Update

Work In Progress Wednesday: Living Room and Life Update

What happened to October? We're already feeling the effects of the holiday season and it's only going to get busier. We'll try to get up to speed on some projects we have in progress right now.

I tried to give a few updates through Instagram stories (including some chatty updates about ) about some things that we have going on, so if you want to keep up with things in real time, you can always follow us there!

Living Room Progress (A Surprise Before & After!)

After the curtain post, we installed the new curtain rods and white curtains. The curtain rods are the same as the one we used in our dining room (this one), and the curtains are also from West Elm (these ones) and they come in a 2-pack. We are very happy to get rid of the messy bamboo shades and the cheap black curtain rods.

If you're wondering, the curtains from West Elm are opaque, which is exactly what we wanted. We wanted curtains that wouldn't totally block light, but would give us some privacy at night. I would recommend them.

Here's a quick before and after of the room and what a difference some new curtains can make. Also, we know one of the rods is a little crooked. When we take the rods down to paint, we'll straighten it.

You can also see that we got rid of that big old bookcase in the corner. The living room feels much bigger without it.

We've agreed to paint the living room next so that we can hopefully have it freshly painted before the holidays roll around. In case you're wondering, we're going with the same color we used for the dining room, Behr's ultra pure white in eggshell. But we might not be able to paint before the holidays because ...

Living Room (And Roof) Setbacks

Although we have grand plans for the living room, we also are running into a couple of issues. Immediately upon moving in, we noticed water damage on the living room ceiling directly below our bathroom.

We knew water was coming from our shower, since the caulking was cracked and the shower handle was installed upside-down. Pat fixed it, then patched the ceiling. That was last winter. Now, we've noticed water coming through the patched ceiling.

To make a long story short, we finally figured out this week - on a very rainy day - that it's a problem with our roof.


We knew the roof had problems, but we didn't know we would need to do anything to it so soon. So we have to look into that issue and understand the complexity and the cost before we do any painting. Hooray!

Living Room Details

To distract from the bad roof problems, we're slowly fleshing out some details that we want for the living room.

Still Looking for a Loveseat

We found another contender for a new couch!

This one is from Interior Define: the Sloan Apartment Sofa. At exactly the $1000 price point, 63" wide (perfect!), and the ability to customize fabric and legs with no extra cost (no need to buy from another shop!), it seems like everything we want.

Side note: I learned about Interior Define from following Chris Loves Julia, who designed their own couch with Interior Define (they designed the Charly sofa). So cool.

 The Sloan Apartment Sofa from Interior Define.

The Sloan Apartment Sofa from Interior Define.

The only downside is that it's not in our spending budget for any time soon. It's not a "downside," exactly, but you know. Fiscal responsibility can be tough! But we have lots of repairs to do first - so the sofa remains on our watch list.

If you want to keep an eye on furniture and other products I'm window shopping, you can to follow the Salt & Rook furniture board on Pinterest.

Updating the Fireplace: Mantel and Tile

 The old mantel. No amount of editing or cropping can save the ugly on show here. It's so ugly we just removed it, threw it away, and use bare brick.

The old mantel. No amount of editing or cropping can save the ugly on show here. It's so ugly we just removed it, threw it away, and use bare brick.

Eventually, we're hoping to build a new, simple mantel over our fireplace.

The old mantel was big, chunky, outdated, and ugly. We threw it away.

 What we hope the new mantel will look like!

What we hope the new mantel will look like!

The inspiration photo is from a gorgeous home design from House of Jade Interiors. You should check them out - if you follow me, odds are good that you've probably pinned some of their work.

We're still finalizing on our budget for this project, which and the kind of wood and stain combination we'd like to use.

We're also brainstorming ideas about fireplace tile. You can see the current tile above, and we'd like to replace it with something bolder.

We can go one of two ways: funky and colorful, with Spanish- or Moroccan-style tile, or leaning into the traditional craftsman style with a glazed green tile for a more craftsman-style or British feel.

I'd love to hear what you think about some of our ideas! We'll be back soon with some updates from the past (bedroom painting before and after! Our basement workshop!)) and some updates about our current situation (water damage remediation!) in the upcoming weeks.

Benjamin Moore Yellow Finch

Benjamin Moore Yellow Finch

Inspiration Post: White Curtains

Inspiration Post: White Curtains