Deuce Cities Henhouse

Bedroom Floor Plans

Bedroom Floor Plan
Whut Up? I bet you guys really want to know about the floor plan of my bedroom, right? Well for those of you who care, you might find it a little interesting as it has a bit of history and some tricky design obstacles. It dawned on me after reading some of your comments, that I never have really taken the time to explain our semi-unconventional bedroom. It’s not really that crazy, it’s just that it is in an old house, and obviously people used to do things a bit differently back then. What I’m trying to say is that it’s not your typical modern bedroom. The room isn’t nice and square, there is no dedicated wall to put the bed on, it’s long and narrow and layout has always been tricky for us. Things make a lot more sense design wise after getting rid of the hidden tank and squaring off the corner, but it’s still tricky.

We have a sunroom off of our bedroom which is awesome but not typical. The entrance of it consists of one large door with a large glass window pane with two full sized double hung windows flanking it. The sunroom has windows on all three walls, and it is our only source of natural light in the bedroom. Depending on the time of day we get a lot of natural light but there are still some dark spots in our bedroom and it can become very cave like on dark cloudy days. The newly wallpapered wall adds a lot of life to the room and helps offset the darkness.

The sunroom most likely used to be an open air porch or a sleeping porch. Now that I have learned more about these old houses I believe it was probably a sleeping porch used during hot muggy summers nights. It’s been enclosed and insulated and although there is no heat source (only the radiator in our bedroom) it stays relatively warm in the winter and we use it all year round. Since updating it last spring we now use it all the time, the kids lounge there to watch TV, and we hang there at nights enjoying a cocktail while devouring the latest spy show starring cool 90′s teen babes.

We don’t have an en-suite bathroom or a walk in closet or anything like that. The interior entry door splits the room almost in half and acts as an invisible hallway directing traffic straight into the sunroom. It’s not a path I really feel like interrupting with furniture. Since there is an invisible barrier between the “bed side” of the room and the other, I thought it would be best to define the “other” space as a functional area in our bedroom and I think I have a plan.

Back in the middle of summer I found a framed full length mirror at Ikea for $30 bucks in the AS IS section. I nabbed it without giving it a second thought. We had been living without a full length mirror for years, and I was over it. Anyway, that basic framed mirror began the downward spiral that is now the bedroom redo. The mirror is the most uninspiring piece of furniture ever, but I bought it on a whim and didn’t measure. It turns out it totally doesn’t fit on the wall I was planning it to rest on. So of course that meant furniture rearrangement, and before I knew it big ideas started coming. It wasn’t all just the mirrors fault, I had been planning on a bedroom makeover eventually, especially since we had finished the sunroom, the bedroom was begging to be changed up. Then mirror just pushed me over the edge. Before you know it I was tearing down the walls and uncovering old mechanics.

Wow, I really get off track quickly, guys, sorry. Back to the far side of the room (aka the “other” side). I was thinking since we don’t have a big closet it would be nice to make it a dressing area. Of course it would include the full length mirror and a tall chest of drawers. Directly across from that I’d like to incorporate a new chair for sitting on (duh) as part of the dressing area. A babe needs a spot to put her shoes on. Behind the chair I’m toying with the idea of adding a mini library, because there are chairs in libraries, so obviously. I know it doesn’t all make tons of sense yet, but I can see it coming together. I know we’d never actually sit there to read, but I think a corner book shelf mounted on the wall would be kind of cool. It would solve the problem of our homeless library of books and the chair would make it feel libraryish. Get it?

It’s all still a big work in progress. I could never be a real designer because I just can’t make all of the decisions in advance. I really need to spend time in a space and witness it slowly coming together, while bothering my husband with hypothetical design questions. I gotta have time to simmer bros. Since I first started stewing I’ve come up with even more specific design ideas for the space and I’m hoping to share those with you next week. This is the long game, my friends. Hang in there.

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Pruning your Fiddle Leaf Fig

Pruning your Fiddle Leaf Fig - Deuce Cities Henhouse
Friends! Just wanted to give you a little fiddle leaf fig (aka ficus lyrata) update. Both my fiddle leaf figs (1 and 2) have grown tons this summer, it’s is really exciting watching new leafs appear all the time. One of my figs (the younger one) really began growing rapidly from the center stalk. It was actually starting to look a bit funny, like an awkward gangly teen (as you can see in the above photo). I really want to encourage my tree to take on a more rounded shape so I decided to do something drastic. After scouring the internet on fiddle leaf fig pruning advice I decided to go ahead and chop off the top of my fig. Now I’ve got to let you know that I didn’t find a lot of solid info out there on the old net, so after some careful observations I came to the conclusion that I’d have a decent chance of creating new branch growth if I lopped off the top of my fig tree, so I did it.

Pruning your Fiddle Leaf Fig - Deuce Cities Henhouse
Minutes after carefully chopping off the top of my tree with a pair of sharp pruning shears I was filled with regret and worry. I wasn’t confident that this was really going to work. That was nearly 7 weeks ago. I was expecting to see a new branch after about two weeks. This totally didn’t happen, then the days passed and there was still no sign of growth. I was sure that I had ruined my tree. I could’ve cried about it, fer real. After four weeks passed, something amazing happened, I spotted the smallest little bud beginning to be formed! My plan worked!

Now mind you, the whole intent of this was to create two new branches in hopes of creating a more rounded vibe for my tree, but when I saw that new growth, I could care less, I was so happy and relieved to see something growing from the main stalk. I was sure I had screwed up my tree for lyfe. I also can see what appears to be the very beginning of a new branch bulge (whatever, my words aren’t technical) so I still am keeping my fingers crossed that it will produce more than the single branch. I’ll let you know what happens over the next few weeks.

If you’re gonna take on pruning your tree, make sure to do so in the months when it is growing – this is super, super important. I read somewhere that August was best, but I bet it would almost be better in the late July months. I am no expert, so don’t take my word for it, just consider what I have to say. If you’re gonna try this it is best to prune your tree immediately after a leaf, you can see in the photo below where I did this. I also paid careful attention to where my fig had been pruned prior (before it was mine). I even examined all the fiddle leaf figs and their pruning scars when I visited the garden center. I’m totally a tree detective.

I imagine my tree has another leaf or two to grow before it ends this growing season. I’m hopeful that next spring it will really take off and the new branches will begin to actually look like branches. I am really, really hoping.

Pruning your Fiddle Leaf Fig - Deuce Cities Henhouse
So, have any of you ever tried doing this before with your Ficus? How did it turn out. Let’s start a discussion about pruning our super fast growing Fiddle Leaf Figs!

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Hey Guys! Just wanted to pop in and say that I am really feeling reinvigorated and positive about blogging, and projects, and life, and all that stuff. I always tone down the frequency of interior projects over the summer months for a few really good reasons. I don’t want to miss out on any of that sun and warm weather, our summers are packed with lots of vacation time and family stuff, and my summer projects mostly involve being in the garden. But most importantly I think taking things slowly during the summer months is a really good way to get amped up for that changing of seasons in the fall. We all need a bit of down time in our lives and perspective to survive the winter.

Unlike previous fall transitions it’s been a bit different this year. Finn, my oldest, is in all-day kindergarten now, which leaves me and the little guy, Gus, with many hours to fill together. This is awesome because Gus rarely has one-on-one time with Jeff or I. He needs it, and we need it. I’m sure a lot of you parents of siblings understand this. Finn has a really large personality, is a bit competitive in nature and often needs to be the center of attention. Gus happens to be totally fine with this, as he prefers to sit back in the cut and take the world in at a slower pace. However, the little dude needs some time out of his brother’s big shadow. With Finn in school and Gus to myself I’m hoping for really great changes in Gus’ growth. We’ve got memberships to the train museum, the zoo, and the children’s museum. We have been out and about multiple times a week! To say we have been busy is a major understatement.

Making time to blog and do house projects has been tough, but one thing is very clear. I love the blog and need it in my life. Having the blog as an outlet to incorporate all my favorite things is crucial to my personal fulfillment. So I will carve out time where I need to to make it happen, even if that means dedicating a night or two it each week to work on it.

Guys! I’m super amped for the fall, I’m looking forward to squeezing in projects and blogging as well as getting the opportunity to have very special and rare time with my little guy. I can’t wait to just dive right in to everything! Hoping you are all having a great start to your week!

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Wallpapering 101

Instructions on How to Install Wallpaper
Guys! Today I am going to teach you how to install wallpaper on an accent wall. This is a job that is fairly easy, a tiny bit stressful, and 100 percent totally worth it. This my friends, is the third time I have ever wallpapered, so I pretty much consider myself an expert. Stick with me and you’ll be alright.

I have a method and it seems to work pretty well, so I’mma share it with you. Wallpapering isn’t that scary, actually it’s pretty straight forward and makes a lot of sense. You are pretty much gluing paper to a wall, which isn’t that hard, my six year old does this sort of stuff all day at kindergarten. A more complicated project might involve wallpapering around fancy moldings, windows or in a small room. I am not showing you how to do that stuff, I am simply sharing instructions with you on papering that all important “accent” wall. I am going to share with you the basic principles of wallpaper (aka wallpapering 101) like finding where to mark your plumb line, determining paper length, matching the pattern, hanging the paper, removing bubbles and trimming the edges. It’s not rocket science bros, but it works.

I’m not gonna lie to ya, there is always a stressful moment in wallpapering, you know, that serious “oh shit” moment. Anticipate that and you’ll do just fine.

Wallpapering Supplies

Wallpaper – Peonies in Copper Colorway from Hygge & West
Zinsser Sure Grip Wallpaper Paste
Straight Edge
Paint Brush & Roller
Seam Roller
Paint Tray
Tape Measure
Wallpaper Squeegee or Smoothing Tool
Straight Edge
Bucket or Pail


Step One
Prepare Walls

Make sure to fill any holes in the wall with spackle and sand down any rough spots. Make sure to wash your wall with a damp sponge prior to starting your wallpapering project


Step Two
Draw Plumb Line & Cut First Strip of Wallpaper

Line Up Pattern Repeats
Measure the width of your wallpaper. Working horizontally out from the right corner of the wall, measure out the width of wallpaper minus two inches. Draw a vertical plumb line at this spot on your wall, using a pencil and a level.

Measure the vertical length of the wall.

Measure out your first strip of wallpaper, take the length of the wall and add five inches, (this will allow you to have a few extra inches of paper for both the top and bottom of the sheet). The excess paper will later be removed.


Step Three
Match Repeat with Second Strip on the Floor

Line Up Pattern Repeats
Prior to hanging the first strip of wallpaper layout the second strip on the floor to the left of the first strip. Wallpaper patterns have repeats, and you want to make sure to line up your second sheet of paper to match the pattern repeat from the first strip. When you have the pattern lined up, roll out the paper and cut the second sheet to match the length and pattern of the first.

*Note, your second sheet will most likely be longer than the first sheet due to the placement of the pattern repeat.


Step Four
Roll Paste & Fold Paper Book Style

Roll Paste and Fold Paper Book Style
Make sure to read the label of your particular brand of paper before beginning to paste. Some wallpapers come pre-pasted, in that instance you only need to wet them to activate the glue. I’ve also used paper that only requires the walls to be pasted prior to hanging. The point is, make sure to read the label of the wallpaper as well as any instructions provided on the label of the wallpaper paste.

This specific wallpaper required me to roll out paste on the back of sheet of wallpaper. After a generous pasting I was instructed to fold the paper to the center (booking the ends). I made sure that the edges lay flat so the glue wouldn’t dry out. Booking the ends of the paper also allows you to easily move the wallpaper around the room without risk of dimpling or kinking the paper. After folding the paper wait 5-7 minutes for the paper to “relax” while at the same time allowing the glue to get nice and tacky. Feed it a cocktail to ensure extra relaxation.


Step Five
Hang First Sheet of Wallpaper on Plumb Line & Smooth Out

Hang First Strip of Wallpaper on Plumb Line
Now this is where it gets a little hectic. I’ve wallpapered three times now, and even though I think I am a pro, there will always be a few minutes of stress and chaos, guaranteed. Usually it happens sometime around the first or second sheet of paper.

I start the process of hanging the first sheet by unfolding the paper, it easily drops down when you use the book method of folding. Begin lining up the paper with the plumb line you previously drew out on your wall. Once the paper is place, begin smoothing out the paper using your hands and good pressure. Follow it up by using a the edge of your smoothing tool (aka wallpaper squeegee) to remove bubbles. The squeegee tool is essential, and is the difference between having a successful project and a shitty one. If your wallpaper isn’t lining up how you wanted it to, try not to worry! I know, that’s hard, believe me. Go ahead and redo what you have done, partially remove the wallpaper from the wall and start over. Crazy, I know, but it can be done if you are working quickly and carefully. Generally speaking, you have about 15 minutes from the time you start hanging the wallpaper to get it right.


Step Six
Line Up Third Strip on the Floor & Hang Second Strip

Now you might want to go ahead and hang that second strip of paper you have lying on the floor, but don’t! Before hanging the second strip use the same exact technique as explained in step 3 and 4 (above) to match your pattern and determine the length of your next sheet.


Step Seven
Trim Excess Paper with a Straight Edge and Sharp Utility Knife

Trim Excess Wallpaper with a Straight Edge
While you wait for 2nd sheet of paper’s glue to set up, go ahead and trim the excess paper from the first sheet hanging on the wall. This part is really satisfying because you finally get to see a crisp clean edge, and everything begins to seem possible! Use a straight edge and a very sharp utility knife to slice the edges of the paper. Be extra careful around corners and moldings. If you are wallpapering a large wall change your blade throughout the project.


Step Eight
Hang Second Sheet, Butt up Seams

Okay, now I give you permission to hang that second sheet of wallpaper! Begin by lining up the second sheet with the first sheet at eye level. I suppose they say to do this because that is where your eye will naturally go, so might as well have get it right at eye level, makes sense, I guess.

Smooth the paper out from the middle moving upward and out to the left, and then downward and out to the left. Follow it up with a good squeegee working down from the top. I find it works best to move your squeegee out from the seam, towards the left and across the paper. Don’t overlap the wallpaper, carefully butt the sheets up to one another. The paper will expand in contract throughout the seasons, so small gaps may occur depending on how humid or dry the air is.

It’s never going to be perfect, guys! Wallpaper has give and it will stretch! No matter what you do and how hard you try, it will never line up perfectly. The good news is that no one will ever notice except you, and even then you’ll really have to look for it. Believe me, I am crazy about that stuff and I barely notice.


Step Nine
Use seam Roller to Flatten Seams, Clean up Excess Glue with Sponge

Use Seam Roller to Flatten Edges, Clean up Excess Glue with a Damp Sponge
So your edges aren’t sticking down as nicely as you’d like? This is where a bit of glue and a seam roller comes in.

Using a brush add a bit of extra glue to the back edges of the paper. Using the seam roller and applying even pressure, roll it up and down the seam. Use a damp sponge to clean up extra glue that might spill out.


Step Ten

I feel like you’ve got the hang of this, continue on repeating steps 3-9 until you finish your wall!

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Thinking About : Big Box Store Ceiling Fans

10 Big-Box Store Ceiling Fans in White
Friends! There is something that you may not know about me… I love sleeping with all of the fans on! Dudes, I am not even kidding around here, this is serious business! Not only do we have two ceiling fans in our master bedroom, but we also have an oscillating fan to boot. It’s just the way it is. Don’t judge.

I never had the problem of needing a constant breeze in our bedroom prior to moving into our house. Our current bedroom just happened to come with two junky old ceiling fans with faux marble fan blades, and even though they were so ugly and gross, it didn’t take me long to learn to love them. Fans just lull me to sleep now, I’m like a super lame baby who needs its blanket – so wut?!

But wait! I can justify this craziness, the fans are actually practical! They keep the second floor of our house cool in the summertime, and warm in the winters – so now you can’t hate me because they’re sensible and economical. It just happens to be a bonus that they just feel so nice to lay under while I fade off into unconsciousness. There is absolutely no way we could live without them, even though I know they are the ugliest objects you could ever affix to a ceiling.

So I’m in need of a matching set of somewhat affordable, somewhat attractive, white ceiling fans. I can’t make this bedroom pretty and leave those ancient-ugly-beastly-fans on my ceiling. I can however make my bedroom pretty and replace old fans with newer, cleaner, kinda-sorta cooler fans. Here’s my top 10 list for affordable big box store fans, all of which can be found at The Home Depot (it’s my local big box). Now I just gotta pick one.

I’m a breeze junky, what are you, a hater or a lover? Come on now, don’t be shy.

Cool Thing Alert

Also, on a side note. My internet friend, Daniel is starting a new adventure over on his site If you guys don’t already read his blog you should – especially now! Not only has he lovingly updated his Brooklyn apartment he’s also spent the last year renovating his 1895 Kingston, NY home DIY style. Now he’s branching out, investing in his burgeoning neighborhood, and planning a home renovation down the street. There should be lots of great blog posts in the coming months, so get with it and start following along already!

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