One Room Challenge: Week 1

And so it begins… welcome to Week 1 of the Spring 2018 One Room Challenge!

Last week I made the announcement that I’d be participating again, but I didn’t reveal which room. Any guesses….? Watch this week’s vlog and find out!

Originally, I was looking forward to using the great room at the Heights House…

You can imagine the pressure of scrambling to figure out a Plan B when the house was destroyed just two weeks before the event was scheduled to begin! Do I drop out of the ORC and leave everyone hanging? Can I find a new room and come up with a design plan on such short notice? Well, they don’t call this the One Room Challenge for nothing—bring it on!

I’m excited to announce that the room I’ve officially decided to make over is…

Our bedroom! We’ve been living in a temporary one bedroom apartment since we moved to Florida in January, expecting to move into our house in July when our lease was up. Well, that’s not happening anymore, so we might as well make the space feel cozy while we’re here!

We’ve been so busy focusing on the renovation of our house that we haven’t bothered to make this apartment feel like home at all. We moved in with nothing but an air mattress, and I bought a few pieces of used & inexpensive furniture online, with the hopes to eventually refinish them.

I found the bed on Craigslist (I believe it cost us around $120 delivered?) and haven’t had the time to paint it, but I think it’s better suited for a future guest room.

The night stands were an OfferUp score for $80 and they have so much potential—they’ll be the first item I tackle in here! Above them, flanking the bed I’ll hang two pretty vintage mirrors.

This beauty was just $45, also found on OfferUp—how gorgeous will it look with a few coats of paint?

On this empty wall I plan to put a small desk & chair so we don’t always have to work from our bed:

I also plan to swap out all three boring hollow cores with custom solid wood panels from Metrie:

On the empty wall across from the bed, I’ll hang some large scale art along with a vintage coat rack:

The window will be updated with some new blinds and curtains.

Above the bed the plan (as of now) is to build a small shelf, and the fan will be swapped out with a beautiful beaded chandelier.

I was really hoping to go all out with picture frame moldings, trim and paint on the walls, but my apartment manager vetoed the idea so I can’t do anything permanent. That’s the biggest challenge of all for me—not having complete creative control! This is the first apartment I’ve ever decorated so it will be interesting to see how far I can go without making any permanent changes (I’ll have to remove the chandelier, blinds/curtains, doors & shelf when we move out).

On the flip side, this could be inspiration for my fellow renters out there who are dealing with restrained designing too! I’m determined to make this work, and to make these temporary walls feel like home as we spend the next year rebuilding ours.

Here’s my vision board for this space. I’m dubbing it the “French Bohemian Bedroom”…

(Coming up with descriptive names is my favorite :D)

Here are some of the key elements I’ll be using:

Bed from Overstock

Floral sheets from Spoonflower/Roostery

Bedding from Pom Pom at Home

Rug from eSale Rugs

Doors from Metrie (painted in Farrow & Ball)

Door knobs from Nostalgic Hardware

Chandelier from Bellacor

Art from Minted

Chair from HomePop

Mirrors from Bellacor

Lamps from Lamps Plus

Hanging Map from Bellacor

Blinds from Overstock

Curtains from Overstock

Vases from Lamps Plus

DIY night stand makeover

DIY desk makeover

DIY wardrobe makeover

DIY wall shelf

I’m really looking forward to seeing how it all comes together, and to share my progress with you all each week! It feels amazing to be back in my zone, dreaming up room designs and brushing up my DIY skills.

Did you know you can get in on the action, too? Take this opportunity to finally tackle that space you’ve been putting off, and join us as a guest participant! It’s a great way to stay accountable and we can all cheer each other on!

Make sure you check out the 19 other participants and see what room they’re working on…

Apartment 34 | Beginning in the Middle | Coco & Jack | The English Room | The Gold Hive

Gray Malin | Jenna Sue Design | Jojotastic | Kelly Rogers Int. | Linda Holt | Marcus Design

Michelle Gage | Natasha Habermann | The Painted House | Rambling Renovators

Sacramento Street | Shannon Claire | Sketch 42 | Stephanie Kraus | Style Me Pretty Living

Media Partner House Beautiful | TM by ORC

I’m off to see them now—this is gonna be a great season… I can feel it!



43 thoughts on “One Room Challenge: Week 1

  1. So glad you were able to change gears and make plans for your apartment. I love seeing rooms go from nothing to phenomenal (as opposed to the participants who already have a Pinterest-worthy finished space and just want to change it up). The Afters are so satisfying! And I’m glad you’re including DIYs; I find such inspiration in those, as opposed to $200 pillows. (Can you tell I have a love-hate relationship with the ORC??)

    Also, I’m sure you’ve learned more than you ever wanted to know about insurance (which you should totally document on the blog as a resource for others), but your insurance should cover the rent on your apartment, right?

    1. Thank you so much for the support Allison, I’m really looking forward to this makeover! We’re still in the very beginning stages of the insurance and don’t know much yet, but they won’t be covering our rent since we already had a lease here and weren’t displaced from the fire.

      1. That’s frustrating, since you will have to extend your lease longer than you originally planned. ?

  2. It is awful what brought the circumstance about, but as a renter I am very excited to hear what your plans are for working around the challenges of not being able to do anything super permanent. Can’t wait to see how it all turns about and am especially looking forward to the furniture makeovers!

  3. I’ve been following you for years and I’m so excited to see another ORC of yours. I’m especially interested because we just moved into our first rental in 10 years and I’m faced with the same restrictions. I decided to make it my personal mission to transform our dining room ORC style and document it along with you guys- plus it gives me some accountability for a timeline. Can’t wait to see what you do 🙂

  4. I’ve used removable wallpaper.. it’s the jam! there are some really great prints out there. Just wondering if you can use it somewhere since you can’t do anything permanent.


    1. Which brand did you use? I ordered a couple swatches from walls need love and was disappointed by the quality of their product. I pretty much scrapped the idea since its pretty pricey and reminded me of contact paper. I’d love to hear if you know of any good alternatives.

      1. nuwallpaper. it worked great for me… took about 15 minutes each section of the wall. it was a patterned wallpaper, but it was easy to reposition and re-stick until perfect. you can’t even see the seems. my only warning is be sure to not to let the back stick to itself (sometimes i would lose my grip doing parts near a high ceiling and the backing would stick to the backing -that is really hard to get apart.)

  5. You have such a great attitude about your circumstances. Must have been all your world travels. Love the plan and can’t wait to see this come together. Loved the flipping furniture 🙂

  6. I was SO excited to see that you’re doing the ORC again! I am sure the fire was completely devastating (I can’t even imagine) but this bedroom will surely be beautiful. Love everything you do and can’t wait to follow along!

  7. So excited to see what you do with this rental! I know a lot of people struggle with non-permanent changes and still making a space feel like home. Your creativity will make it fabulous, I’m sure! 🙂

  8. Your design plan looks great. It’s so hard to make a temporary living space feel like home, but I’m sure you’ll knock it out of the park. Good luck with all the insurance stuff with your house. I was really sorry to hear about that.

  9. Dear Jenna
    I am most probably one of your most enthusiastic followers from South Africa. I am a farmer’s wife who lives in the central part of SA. I can identify with your style and love your ability to see the possibility in almost everything from design to execution. This new adventure in the form of an ORC is most probably the best thing to put your energy into, especially with everthing that happened to you these past weeks. I know for sure that I will learn a lot from you again with your DIY skills and eye for design. To buy everything from an interior shop is not a challenge, but to work with what you have and to improvise as you go, that is a challenge in my book! Good luck. I can not wait to be part of your ORC journey!

    1. Hi Annene, that is so kind of you to say and I just love hearing that you’re from halfway across the world! You are absolutely correct, I needed this ORC to get me through these next couple months! This challenge has more than one meaning for me this time around, but I love a good challenge these days 😉

  10. I LOVE that you’re doing an apartment room. People will learn so much from seeing you do a “temporary” space! And of course, it looks like a beautiful plan. 🙂 Good luck!

  11. I love everything about this room. Can I ask where you are getting the drawer pulls from for the night stands? I’m doing something similar with a coffee table and found some on Amazon, but I’m reading mixed reviews.

    Thanks so much.

  12. Hi Jenna!
    Love the room. The reveal is gorgeous. We actually have that same bed from Overstock and I’ve been trying to decide what color to paint the walls for a few months now. I know you’re landlord said no to paint, but whatever is up on the walls looks great…any ideas what the actual color is?

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