My Favorite Room....On Sutton Place


When Kim asked me to be a part of her "My Favorite Room" series, the first thing that popped into my head was that definitely I would be writing about my Living Room. The more I thought about it though, the more I knew I had to write about my Entry.
  The transformation that recently took place in my Entry wasn't planned or expected. I started the project knowing only that I wanted to remove the carpet and wallpaper and update the finishes. So that's where I started.

When the carpet was removed I was totally elated to find oak hardwood steps and risers in very good condition. I wasn't so lucky with the walls under the wallpaper. The drywall was a mess...I'll get to that later though. Steps first. Here they are before we started the refinishing process. Really not bad at all.

The first thing we did was sand and fill in the holes. After that the stain was applied and then 3 coats of poly. We opted to apply the finish on all the steps at the same time and get the process over with. The other option was to do every other stair over 2 days. (The day the poly was applied we slept downstairs.) Here they are stained, sealed and risers painted.

I had help with the tread refinish but I painted the risers myself. It took a few days from start to finish. Here is my step by step process:
1. Tape off the treads.
2. Caulk the gaps all around the risers. Remove the tape and let caulk dry overnight.
3. Tape off treads again. I tried leaving the tape from the caulk step on for the painting step but it didn't work. The caulk came off with the tape. Thankfully I started with just the top 2 steps so I was able to re-think my process before painting all the risers.
4. With fresh tape I primed the risers followed by 2 coats of paint.

With the steps finished we moved on to the walls. We applied a skim coat before priming and painting 2 coats of Sherwin Williams Upward. Here is a great tutorial on skim coating. I really think it was the most important step in the painting process. Wallpaper can hide a multitude of sins...paint not so much. After sweating it out refinishing the steps I didn't want to go only halfway on the walls. It took longer and was no fun (honestly it was awful) but in the end I am so glad we did it.

I replaced all the brass hinges, door knobs, switchplates and lights with new Oil Rubbed Bronze fixtures. I got all the hinges on eBay for much, much less than I could find at my home improvement stores. I started buying all the new fixtures right after Christmas and was able to spread it out over several months. It was so much easier than spending a big chunk of change all at once.

The only hinges I didn't change were the ones on the front door. I taped them off, primed and then painted them with some ORB spray paint. I just sprayed the paint into a throw away bowl and used a little brush. They look great and you would never know they were once brass!

The last step was to re-hang the gallery wall pictures. I waited a long time to do this. The walls turned out so good that I had a hard time pounding nails in them! But hang the pictures I did and now I love it.

I used this little tool that Sabrina Soto had mentioned on one of her TV shows. Just put a screw in the end of a paint stick.

Hang the picture on the screw and figure out your placement. Gently push the screw into the wall. Use the little indentation in the wall as your marker for the nail. Works like a charm. I hung all these pictures in just over an hour and that included figuring out the placement first.

This project wasn't quick or easy. There were times when I wondered if I was nuts to even be attempting it. I can truly say now that it was worth every sore muscle, every tear (yes, there were a few) and all the mess and confusion.

I love my entry. I'm proud of the way it turned out and know I added value to my home. Can't get any better than that.

I'd like to thank Kim for the opportunity to share my project with her readers. I met Kim when my blog was very new by joining her weekly linky party. She has been a constant support as I have figured out blogging and owning an Etsy shop. I can pretty much guarantee that without her friendship I wouldn't be where I am today.

Thank you, Ann. I sure hope y'all will go visit Ann's blog, On Sutton Place. You will love touring more of her beautiful home. Be sure and check our her etsy shop, too.

Have a wonderful weekend. 
I am attending the Southern Blogger's conference in Raleigh, N.C. this weekend.
I will try to add updates on facebook.


  1. First, I have to say that friends from blogging are just the best! It warms your heart to know someone on the other side of the screen cares about your thoughts! I know.. as I did a recent post about one of my blogging friends. We must support each other! Now, it's interesting to read post of yours as I woke up thinking about the transformation we did in our 1929 home. We have a curved staircase and the previous owners had put a carpet runner on it. Oh, dear! Made the stairs look narrower! My husband and son would come over each night to rip carpet up and that was the end of the carpet on our stairs!! We also replaced the brass with the oil rubbed bronze. However, I wasn't as wise as you and bought them at the hardware store...ouch!! Thanks for a great post and do come on over and visit mine. I would love to have you!!

  2. I also follow Ann's blog and think she did a beautiful job on her foyer and stairs. I guess I didn't know she did it herself though. :) Great job Ann!

  3. Yes Ann is an inspiration when it comes to Stairs.... lol Love them. I also follow.

  4. Your entryway/stair makeover turned out beautiful Ann!

  5. It looks lovely. I keep debating tackling our steps and ripping the ugly carpet off. Do you have any issues with noise in the going up and down? My boys have their rooms upstairs and I keep wondering if they would be like elephants going up and down!

  6. Kim and Ann,
    thanks Kim for having Ann do this lovely post.
    I so enjoyed it, and Kim yall did a wonderful job on your foyer, everything looks so updated and
    just beautiful, all that hard work has sure paid off big dividends. Very fresh and pretty.
    Thanks for sharing it with us.
    blessings, Nellie

  7. Ann I could totally see why you would pick your entry. It turned out magnificent! What a change indeed. Thanks for sharing Kim.

  8. Wonderful job....a great updated makeover!

  9. You did a wonderful job!! LOVE the new look!! :) xo Holly

  10. Ann, Your entryway is beautiful! All your attention to detail creates a stunning welcome.
    Mary Alice

  11. Ann knows I loved her entry before and after! She did an amazing job and it looks beautiful!! Great feature Kim!!

  12. You should be proud, Ann! Your entry turned out beautifully from the stairs to the walls. Such a great color, too.

  13. I do like your entry, Ann. I love the look of the wood treads and the painted risers. It's so clean and fresh. We have to have carpet on our stairs or our dog freaks out. Slippery wood scares him. I had three bare stairs above the landing for about a week, and poor Alfie almost couldn't make it up to bed at night. That's a great tip about the screw in the paint stick!

  14. Entries are like first impressions! And your first impression is fabulous! I love all the updated elements and fresh color and design! That blue is gorgeous! I am so glad to see the lovely chair in your original image is still there... now accompanied by other great pieces... and your WONDERFUL pillows!
    We are making over the front of our home which includes the foyer... what great inspiration!
    Ann you are so gifted in so many area!
    Thank for sharing your home with us!
    And Kim, enjoy the Conferene... I am very jealous. Tell everyone I said HI! Learn lots and come home and share!!!!

  15. Ann, I love your new look. It really updated the space and made it so fresh and lovely!! What a beautiful first impression for your guests, and for you to see upon arriving home :)

    Thanks for sharing this Kim.

  16. I love the stairs, wall color and picture placement I so have to pin it for feature reference. All in all a beautiful entry!

  17. what a difference! so pretty, Ann =)

  18. Very nice change!!
    I love red, but the color blue you have is very soothing!
    Change is usually good :-}}

  19. What a great difference!! I love the picture hanging tip, that is a great one....

  20. Wow, what an amazing transformation -- truly lovely! Thanks for sharing this with us.

  21. Hi Ann & Kim, Your entryway is beautiful Ann. I was thinking of you today - I baked some of your pumpkin bread and it's delicious! Thanks so much for the recipe. Have a great weekend.

  22. Hello!
    Wow! What a beautiful transformation! The entryway looks so calming. I love love it!

  23. HI there, I hope to meet you both in person on Saturday!

  24. :) I love your entry too. And I agree it was totally worth the effort - tears and all :)

  25. Wonderful transformation!!! Beautiful. Thanks so much for sharing!
    Cheers, Gee

  26. What a lovely transformation! We had the same mess in our house when we moved in, only it was cracked plaster we had to repair. Dust, dust, and more dust. I still haven't pounded any nails in those walls and it's been a few years! After seeing Ann's lovely photo gallery, I'm inspired to get our family pictures out of storage and up on the walls. Thanks for featuring this gorgeous transformation!

  27. Ann, your foyer transformation is beautiful! I love the stairs! We just built this new home a d have the same thing: stained treads and painted risers. I loved hearing about the process and am sorry it was a bit of a pain but SO worth it. Kim, hope youare having FUN and will share what you learn. XO, Pinky

  28. What a beautiful job she did, I love the tip for hanging pictures. I will definitely use it.


  29. Hi Kim, Ann did a beautiful job transforming her stairway and wall. Wow, what a difference. I've been thinking about doing the picture gallery like Ann's and haven't had the courage to attempt it yet. Her tutorial helps a lot.
    Thank for featuring Ann's beautiful foyer.

    The French Hutch

  30. A big WOW for the before and after. Light and fresh and pretty.


  31. Kim this is a great feature!What a beautiful transformation! LOVE that color and the photo gallery too!

  32. Your entry has been totally transformed! It's so much lighter now. I'm very impressed with all of the attention to detail you gave it. When I changed out the hardware on my doors, I didn't even bother with the hinges! Ha! I love your steps. They are so pretty stained.

  33. How lucky to find such beautiful stairs under that carpet!! It's a gorgeous transformation, and I love the finished look. Getting me more and more excited to get my own stairs done!! If only I had gorgeous treads under my carpet...

  34. Thank you to Kim and Ann for sharing. Ann, your entry looks fabulous - and I love your living room, too.♥

  35. Wow, turned out beautiful! I love the stairs. I am getting ready to redo my stairway also. Thank you for the tip with the nail and paint stick. What an awesome tip! I will definetly be doing that when I rehang all my pictures.

  36. Ann, your entry is gorgeous! No wonder it is your favorite. I'm sure you are filled with pride and satisfaction every time you see it! That tip about the paint stick is very helpful. And Kim, I really enjoy this series.

  37. What an amazing transformation...and so tastefully done!

  38. Ann, your entry is just lovely. The stair makeover is gorgeous and it's amazing how little things, like changing out hardware, can make such a difference. And I love the gallery wall!

  39. I adore Ann's blog and its so fun to see her featured! Beautiful transformation!! How lucky to have those beautiful stairs under that carpet.