Last year my husband and I bought a lovely little bungalow a few miles from our favorite beach, and we adore it. Having said that, we also couldn’t wait to give our “charming” — aka old and quirky — new home a major makeover. And, real talk? We’ve been on an emotional roller coaster ever since.
So if you are thinking of doing the same, get ready for a wild ride! To help you get your head in the right space, here’s a glimpse of the phases you (and everyone else undertaking a home reno on their own) inevitably cycle through. Spoiler alert: It’s worth every maddening minute.
1. All-encompassing giddiness
Yaaaas. You finally got your significant other to agree to a home makeover. You’re the queen of the world! Which is your oyster! The emoji of your soul right now would be a giant exclamation mark. The opening track on the soundtrack of your life would be “Walking on Sunshine.” If you were a logo, you’d be one of those eternally chipper Life Is Good stick figures. Let the idea boards commence.
2. The Pinterest high
Your excitement level cannot possibly be contained by one measly board. There will be boards for paint choices, boards for paint hacks, boards for inspiration, boards for your ever-loving boards. There is no shame in this game — I have 109 boards, and I need every single one, you guys. When you’re a Pinterest fiend, the world is full of possibilities (and potential Pinterest fails).
3. Budgetary blues
I’m fairly certain my husband wanted to form a DIY-home-rehabbers Anonymous group when I started announcing “I love the smell of commerce in the morning!” every time we walked into our local home improvement store. But in all seriousness, is it even possible to stick to a budget during a home makeover? Don’t ask me. I wouldn’t know from experience. I would apparently give away all my monies in the name of pretty tile and a new caulk gun.
4. The blind optimism of potential
Between Pinterest, the excitement over getting to do a home makeover in the first place and the potent combo of adrenaline and caffeine fueling you, everything is awesome. That musty smell that envelopes you every time you walk into the guest room? “Beachy.” The straight-out-of-the-’70s fruit wallpaper border in the kitchen? “Retro.” The potential you see in your home overshadows any glaring problems and makes everything seem totally doable — which is why I have holes in my powder room wall right now, thank you very much “quaint” ceramic towel holders that refused to gently jiggle free.
5. The hysteria of sentimental attachment
What do you mean we don’t need this circa 1960 broken record player console now that our remodeled foyer includes built-ins? But I love it. I need it. I can’t imagine my life without it! What’s that? It’s been covered in coats for three straight years and I probably couldn’t even tell you what it looks like? Bollocks! It’s, uh, wood… with a record player… and, uh, legs. Shut up. I’m keeping it.
6. Just-one-more-I-promise mentality
You may also recognize this as the I-can-get-it-all-done-I’ll-sleep-when-I’m-dead phase. I’ve been operating in this phase for, oh, about eight months now. I’m not sure I’ll ever leave. It’s warm and cozy and full of coffee and strangely pretty paint-splattered clothes I can’t wear in the light of day. If my husband had a dollar for every time I told him I’d come to bed after painting “one more wall,” well, we could buy that fancy fridge with the SodaStream built in that we’ve been eyeballing.
7. The letdown of reality
Ah, yes. That moment of sheer panic when you realize you have no earthly idea what you are doing and that all those things you found “charming” and “quirky” before now make you want to plunge your head into a vat of paint and hide from the world like a DIY ostrich. This usually occurs after you’ve made some catastrophic miscalculation (see aforementioned reference to my powder room).
8. Pure pride
Fortunately all that nerd rage is short-lived and soon replaced by the glowing realization that you’ve created an HGTV-worthy space in your very own home. You, m’lady, are amazing. Someone should give you your own show, where you can wield a pink tool belt and knock down walls all day, because you are a home makeover goddess of Joanna Gaines proportion.
9. The itch to do it all again
Sure, it’s been hard. Have there been times you were tempted to ram your head against your fabulous and newly painted walls? Yep. Do your fingers feel heavy with the caking of sawdust and plaster and paint and maybe even a little blood? Naturally. But you’d do it again in a heartbeat. Right, hubs?
This post was brought to you by American Signature Furniture.